First of all, yes this was my daughters Leland High School Physics Project that I enjoyed helping her with, however, if they didn’t expect parents and outsiders to help these kids, why did they set the dimensions of the device to one square meter and choose a projectile like a baseball? No way to build that machine without power tools welding and serious thrust. This was a college level engineering competitionand serious buisness with devices that push the definition of “lethal weapon”. I did enjoy the fact that this was my daughters first exposure to the supervised use of power tools and that my freshman son enjoyed the project almost more than her. We designed and built to win after being told that the record for such a trebuchet was 50 meters. By the time we finished the “floating arm”
design and augmented the weight drop with bungie cords, we were consistently throwing 60 to 70 meters which we were confident would win the competition. That is , until the blade tresbuchet from some robotics students was rumored to have tossed a ball more than 450 yards to which I replied BS. Well my bad. On December 10th, at 1:00pm, a tresbuchet with a custom aluminum arm powered by 500lbs of Surgical Tubing Thrust, lancheda baseball 150 meters to our 70 meters. By the way, we did come in second, out of 20 catapults with the next closest being 63 meters.