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Crossbows - Everything about Building, Modding, and Using your Crossbow Gear

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    Strange crossbow configuration shooting different directions

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    HeroSK
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    Post by HeroSK Fri Dec 12, 2014 1:33 am

    Hi all,

    I just found this strange crossbow configuration shooting several directions at once from a copy of Conrad Kyeser's Belli Fortis dated to 1460. Do you think that would work?

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    Post by kenh Fri Dec 12, 2014 7:33 am

    Frankly I think it's just artistic license and a desire for balance in the drawing.  I don't think this was intended as a technical drawing of the functioning of a crossbow.
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    Post by mac Fri Dec 12, 2014 8:09 am

    I am going to have to disagree with KenH.  These military tretises are full of bad ideas and stuff that only sort of works.  They have the flavor of "Oh, and here's another trick you can try!".  This particular stunt and variations on it appear in a number of these works, including the early 15th C Kyeser manuscripts.

    I am sure that this can be made to "work" in the sense that all three bolts will leave the bow.  The two facing backwards are not going to go very far or with much force, and the forward facing one will have been robed of much of the stored energy it would normally have had. 

    It's hard to imagine any practical use for this idea except to win bar bets.  If 15th C guys had been able to make Youtube videos, this bow would have been a meme. 

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    Post by mac Fri Dec 12, 2014 8:13 am

    As an aside.  The continuous loop of string over the nocks makes this a sort of compound bow.  The friction of the string over the horn nocks would really be an energy sucker.

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    Post by HeroSK Fri Dec 12, 2014 9:06 am

    This is not one instance. Here another one with four bolts. The only practical usage would be some kinda trap I think. Still interesting. The only way to know is to try but it looks dangerous.

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    Post by Rizzar Fri Dec 12, 2014 9:28 am

    Artistic freedom or ignorance.

    I think, concerning many historic paintings, that somebody that is painting does not have to have a clue about the things he is seeing or at least pretending to see.

    There are so many paintings that make little sense, but people are still trying to interpret some fantastic invention just because stylistic reasons for the artisan...

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    Post by jeep Fri Dec 12, 2014 1:58 pm

    It may  help if you are surrounded by some zombie!!!
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    Post by Todd the archer Fri Dec 12, 2014 6:29 pm

    No way the rear facing arrows are going anywhere! Think about it. At the moment of release the limb tips are going to move forward and the secondary string as a straight line will move forward as well.

    Sorry just another whimsical artist drawing with no basis in reality.

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    Post by mac Fri Dec 12, 2014 7:27 pm

    Todd the archer wrote:Think about it. At the moment of release the limb tips are going to move forward and the secondary string as a straight line will move forward as well.
    Todd,

    You have thought it through very carefully and cut to the heart of it.    I think you are right.

    Mac

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