05 February 2013

Wood Hobby Projects

When I don't have much to do in the evenings, I often will make wooden objects, just for fun.   Most are made scaled down, but some items are made full sized. 
  This is a small model of a Ballista, which fires arrows at an enemy's walls or troops; not this one, of course, just the full sized ones back in Medieval times in Europe.   This and the Trebuchet models, shown later, all work quite nicely.
The next item is myself holding a full length, practice, Oak Bastard Sword, with a leather wrapped hilt.  It's longer, at about 48", than the more well-known Long Sword, which is about 39" long.
Next is an assortment of odd-shaped Boomerangs and, yes, they work just fine.  Depending on the bevel one imparts to the "wings," they will either come back to you or overshoot your position by a hundred yards, but one has to know how to throw them or they'll just fall to the ground, hard.  At top is the more recognizeable Boomerang shape.  The three at the bottom are not quite full sized.

Next is a model of a Catapult, both ready to fire and after firing the marble.

I made a prototype Child's  Picnic  Table, which I hoped to market, but now have just the prototype listed in Craig's List.  It could be used indoors or outdoors, has no preservatives or coating on it, yet, but does have outdoor hardware on it.  The bucket gives you an idea of its size.  Its length is 3'.
Here is a two-foot high Trebuchet, another form of catapult.
Next is my first Oak Longbow.  I made it out of a 1"x2"x 6'  length of Oak.  The originals were made of saplings or tree limbs, which I'm planning on doing, but have not gotten around to, yet.  I hadn't strung this one as of this photo.    I must make my own bows such that they are not in excess of perhaps thirty pounds draw, whereas a man's hunting bow can be in excess of an eighty-pound draw.  This is because one of my neck muscles was removed eight years ago, which renders my left arm somewhat unusable for holding the bow out straight in front of me at a heavier draw.
This is another version of a Trebuchet made out of popsickles.

Model Short Sword and Ax, the Short Sword made of Oak and the Ax made out of model airplane plywood.  Again, not quite full sized.
Three different Trebuchets.  The bottom one is designed to lob tennis balls and the bucket contains the weight, whether it be water or rocks or...
Two types of Trebuchet made of popsickle sticks.  The pocketknife should give you a further idea of their sizes.
These Recurve Bows are also made of 1"x2" Oak slats and are about six feet in length.  I have not made a proper string for either, yet, nor are they fully strung.  Both of these have different style handles.  I did not have - or want to make - a steam cabinet to curve the wood, so I used  a hot water bath  instead.  It wasn't quite as efficient, but it did work.  After bathing in hot water (or steam) for a period of time, one clamps these to a form until fully dried.
I shaved off too much wood for a few of my earlier bows and ended up making shorter bows instead.  If a broken bow could not be salvaged, I could cut off the handle and incorporate it into a new bow.  I hate to waste good Oak or any other wood (or, in fact, leather for those projects).


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