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The Crossbow   >   Chapter 50   >   Arrow Throwing   >  p.244

Table of Contents List of Illustrations Index Appendix

The Crossbow

The hazel arrow is slightly tapered from one end to the other, its bluntly pointed thick extremity forming the head, or part which travels forward when the arrow is thrown. The pith of the hazel forms the longitudinal centre of the arrow. The arrow is, in fact, formed of pith with a thin shell of wood outside it.

The length of the arrow is 31 in. Its diameter at its small end 3/16 in. ; at its centre of length, 1/4 in. ; near its head, 5/16 in.;  see fig. 177, p. 246.

Its weight is a little over 1/2 oz., or equal to 3s. 6d. in silver coin of the realm.

The balancing point of the arrow is 13 in. from its head, A, fig. 176.

The arrow-throwers are so particular in regard to the balance of their arrows, that they may sometimes be seen inserting a common pin up the pith of the small end of an arrow, or else perhaps extracting one.

The trivial difference of the weight of an ordinary pin will aid or retard the flight of one of these hazel arrows by several yards, and may be the cause of a match being lost or gained as the case may be.

To Throw the Arrow, Fig 176

1. Make a pencil mark round the arrow at 16 in. from its head, B, fig. 176.

2. Take a piece of hard strong string, 1/16 in. in diameter and 28 in. long. Tie a double knot at 1/2 in. from one end of the string, C, fig. 176.

3. Hold the head of the arrow towards you in your left hand, and hitch the knot firmly round the pencil mark, as shown at D, fig. 176.1

4. Next, and still holding the head of the arrow towards you in the left hand, twist the loose end of the string round the first joint of the first finger of the right hand, until the inside edge of this finger is 3 in. from the point of the arrow along its shaft. Keep the string meanwhile tightly stretched from the finger to the knot. The knot will not slip if the string is kept taut, E, fig. 176.2

5. Now grip the arrow close to its head between the thumb and the second and third fingers of the right hand ; (the first finger keeping the string tight,) and turn it from you in the direction of its. intended flight, F, fig. 176.

6. Hold the arrow at arm's length in front of you, then draw it back and

1 Remember that the knot is merely hitched to the arrow and not tied to it.

2 During the process of winding the string on the forefinger of the right hand, the left hand should grasp the arrow and the string tightly together a few inches below the knot, so as to prevent the latter from slipping. The part of the string (about half its length) which is wrapped round the finger may be unravelled so as not to cut the skin. The unravelled portion may be stopped by a knot from unwinding too far.


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The trebuchet kit includes fully precut and drilled frame parts, pins and axles, sling cord and sewn pouch, projectiles and fully illustrated assembly and firing instructions. 

Unlike the flimsy, snap together plywood trebuchet kits, our all hardwood trebuchet kit does not require additional cutting, trimming or shaping.

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Inspired by the great war machines and siege catapults of Leonardo da Vinci , this all Red Oak hardwood trebuchet features an open counterweight cabinet for range and trajectory adjustment. 

Fire with an empty counterweight for indoor use, or add weight (nuts, bolts, scrap lead, iron or steel, sand, or small rocks not included) for increased range.

Individually crafted from cabinet-grade red oak, the da Vinci Trebuchet stands 14 inches tall in the cocked position, 24 inches tall in the fired position and will hurl a projectile up to 60 feet. Includes six projectiles and fully illustrated instructions.

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