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    A selfspanning crossbow in the Loeffelholz MS

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    Post by mac Mon Mar 16, 2015 9:05 pm

    Here are a couple of details from pages in the Loeffelholz manuscript of 1505. http://jbc.bj.uj.edu.pl/dlibra/docmetadata?id=258834&from=publication

    They show a pretty cool way to make a selfspanning bow. Sorry about how I cropped one of the nocks.  The images from the Biblioteka Jagiellonska are DjVu format and I had to use screen captures to get them into Jpeg. Unfortunately,  the zoom was in set increments.   Perhaps a Geekier fellow would have a better way....


    In any case, here it is.  As military tretises go, Loeffelholz is very reliable.  So, who knows... this might even work.

    A selfspanning crossbow in the Loeffelholz MS Selfsp11

    A selfspanning crossbow in the Loeffelholz MS Selfsp12

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    Post by phuphuphnik Tue Mar 17, 2015 12:18 am

    sigh...(adds to shortlist)
    If I had the money I'd try to make one this week. Looks easy enough. Actually, I can use a prod off one of my other bows, and I have the steel. hmmm...
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    Post by phuphuphnik Tue Mar 17, 2015 12:40 am

    Did some quick measurements. Assuming a 1" wide nut: prod length is 21", draw length is about 7" total stock length is around 24" Note all measurements have a heavy -ish on them.
    What do you think, oak stock, maple top?  That latch at the butt is cool.. the hinge will be tricky, it looks like it is shaped to the stock, I don't have a swage block to do that. Not sure brass would be up to the task, want to use steel.

    Looks like a thumb button for the lock, otherwise how would you fire it?
    The lever looks like it is functional. I'll have to ponder this.
    Back later.
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    Post by HeroSK Tue Mar 17, 2015 3:16 am

    Amazing manuscript indeed. I downloaded entire book to my computer and  I tried to get wider view of the crossbow. Can anybody read the writings ?

    A selfspanning crossbow in the Loeffelholz MS Ndigor11

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    Post by hullutiedemies Tue Mar 17, 2015 6:51 am

    phuphuphnik wrote:

    Looks like a thumb button for the lock, otherwise how would you fire it?

    Lock is a standard roller nut lock except that trigger has only the sear bar wihout tickler lever . Pin-lock style trigger in bottom lever will push the primary trigger hidden inside lock frame.

    The spanning lever is basically identical to modern spring loaded air rifles.
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    Post by mac Tue Mar 17, 2015 7:36 am

    hullutiedemies wrote:

     Lock  is a standard roller nut lock except that trigger has only the sear bar wihout tickler lever . Pin-lock style trigger in bottom lever will push the primary trigger hidden inside lock frame.

    The spanning lever is basically identical to modern spring loaded air rifles.
    Yes.  I'm with you.   We have to presume that the tickler is pivoted near the "break" hinge and that the artist has not depicted it.

    What do you suppose is the function of the screw?  My best guess is that it locks the end of the sear bar until the spanning sequence is complete.  That may even be the end of the bar that we can see protruding back from the step in the "carriage".   But, why use a slotted screw for something that needs to be turned every time the bow is shot?  That just seems inconvenient.

    My other guess is that the screw secures a spring that bears against the end of the sear bar.  I don't much like that either, though.  Such a screw would (and could) be better hidden on the underside of the carriage.

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    Post by mac Tue Mar 17, 2015 7:44 am

    The thing that worries me most about this whole thing is whether or not the wooden parts are up to the stresses that will be imposed on them.

    The artist has given a lot of verisimilitude to the thing by showing us those iron straps on the sides of the carriage.  Without those there would be no chance at all of the nut-well holding together.

    There are two major concerns about the wood.  The first is whether or not there is enough wood between the hinge and the bow to support the compression.  The second is whether or not the seriously hollowed shaft of the tiller is strong enough to bear the bending loads that will be imposed during the cocking phase. 

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    Post by Armbrustier Tue Mar 17, 2015 12:21 pm

    Hi Mac!
    It has already been done! yeeeeaahhhh woot2

    A selfspanning crossbow in the Loeffelholz MS Lyffel11
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    Post by HeroSK Tue Mar 17, 2015 12:30 pm

    Woah! Splendid work!  Shocked  It would a delightful to watch it while working. Could you please share more photos or even a video if available? Smile
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    Post by Rizzar Tue Mar 17, 2015 12:37 pm

    Genious!!

    A plan for the trigger/lock mechanism would be great, too.

    I am planning to build a bulletbow with implemented spanning (top lever) but regular bottom trigger someday and still think about the transfer from the moved part to the tiller especially concerning safety while spanning.

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    Post by mac Tue Mar 17, 2015 1:38 pm

    Armbrustier wrote:Hi Mac!
    It has already been done! yeeeeaahhhh woot2




    Splendid!
    Who did it?
    I presume from what I see that the maker of this crossbow interpreted the slotted screw behind the nut as a push-button to set the sear bar.  Is that right?  

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    Post by mac Tue Mar 17, 2015 1:43 pm

    ...and just to be clear.  Is this a real object, or is it Photoshop?

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    Post by phuphuphnik Tue Mar 17, 2015 7:11 pm

    Hate to say it, but it looks computer generated.
    As for a lock, why not one like the latchet lock Todstuff did? http://www.myarmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=27236
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    Post by Armbrustier Tue Mar 17, 2015 10:27 pm

    I can't say for sure that it's real, because I have only seen these photos of it, but I totaly believe the builder to be capable of doing it!
    It's built by my friend and master crossbow builder Andreas Bichler from Austria.
    He has built several working horn composite bows including a wall crossbow that I have seen being shot in Austria last year.
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    Post by Armbrustier Tue Mar 17, 2015 11:59 pm

    I will try to post a few photos of his awesome stuff.
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    Post by Rizzar Wed Mar 18, 2015 12:37 am

    Guys, you get irritated by the cut out background.


    Here are some more examples of the groups site (look at the style of the pictures)
    (damn link leads only to homepage. click left side on  "REALIEN" -> right screen side "Reproduktionen von mcd - md" )

    I know Andreas Bichler, too and he is absolutely capable of doing that stuff.
    Got to get into contact with him again some time when I have more time for building.


    Have a look at the real composite bows, the are always absolutely stunning and I bet thye took a lot more work than doing the mechanics for the spanning crossbow.

    There are different ways to to the transition from the lever/trigger to the lock.
    I just dont want to do a thumb trigger (as seen on the latchet bow (which will be coincidentally my next bow) on the bullet bow  because I think it is not as precise to handle.
    The problems begin when putting an topside lever together with a bottom trigger and vice versa.

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    Post by JMC Wed Mar 18, 2015 7:06 am

    Rizzar wrote:Guys, you get irritated by the cut out background.


    Here are some more examples of the groups site (look at the style of the pictures)
    (damn link leads only to homepage. click left side on  "REALIEN" -> right screen side "Reproduktionen von mcd - md" )

    I know Andreas Bichler, too and he is absolutely capable of doing that stuff.
    Got to get into contact with him again some time when I have more time for building.


    Have a look at the real composite bows, the are always absolutely stunning and I bet thye took a lot more work than doing the mechanics for the spanning crossbow.

    There are different ways to to the transition from the lever/trigger to the lock.
    I just dont want to do a thumb trigger (as seen on the latchet bow (which will be coincidentally my next bow) on the bullet bow  because I think it is not as precise to handle.
    The problems begin when putting an topside lever together with a bottom trigger and vice versa.

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    Andreas has already made one!
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    Post by mac Wed Mar 18, 2015 7:10 am

    I have great respect for Andreas Bichler, and have no doubt that he is capable of building this bow.

    If he says that he built it, then he has done a fine job, and it deserves better pictures.  If he says that this is his pre-production photoshop mockup, then he has done a fine job of that as well.

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    Post by Armbrustier Wed Mar 18, 2015 8:29 am

    I found that he said it worked for a bow of around 100 kilo draw weight, but I think it looks like the bow in the illustration is heavier.
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    Post by hullutiedemies Wed Mar 18, 2015 9:48 am

    Btw. this kind of crossbows can be seen in action in Chronicles of Narnia movie "Prince Caspian"
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    Post by phuphuphnik Wed Mar 18, 2015 10:23 am

    For the record, I wasn't saying no one did it, just the photo looks like a drawing, a mock up like Mac said sorry if it came across any other way. Rizzar, you are correct I think I'm fooled by the style of the photo, looking at the others.
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    Post by mac Thu Mar 19, 2015 6:59 am

    Armbrustier wrote:I found that he said it worked for a bow of around 100 kilo draw weight, but I think it looks like the bow in the illustration is heavier.
    That's exactly right.  The bow in the Loefelholz MS looks like a very "standard" sort of steel bow.  I wonder if there is enough wood to support it .

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    Post by Rizzar Thu Mar 19, 2015 7:23 am

    Just a drawing,

    it is difficult enough to draw a crossbow bow, especially a thin one would not look very good.

    Why excessively bothering with forces during illustrating a book?
    Would say the artist just drew the bow like he was used to, or saw on other pictures than measuring it up.



    Hell, the more I look on it, the more I want to build a new bow.

    Lever, latchet, bullet or strong cranequin suited.
    It doesn´t matter, got suitable prods for everything except a balestino perhaps, but no responsible time at all Sad((

    You guys have a bad influence on me.

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    Post by edstuff Thu Mar 19, 2015 12:06 pm

    I wish I had more knowledge of crossbows.  If I did I would make an attempt at a detailed CAD drawing.  Truth is I'm a better draftsman than I am a builder.  
    Either way I really hope somebody attempts this.  I think it's an amazing concept.
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    Post by mac Thu Mar 19, 2015 1:00 pm

    Ed,

    Give it a go!  If you can stand to have us telling you  "move that line here" , "make this part thicker", and "try moving that pivot forward", it might be a fun exercise for everyone. 

    For most medieval crossbow projects CAD is overkill, but this thing has a lot of moving parts and it might be convenient to draw it that way.  

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