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

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    stirrups on crossbows

    Todd the archer
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    stirrups on crossbows Empty stirrups on crossbows

    Post by Todd the archer on Sun Aug 22, 2010 1:57 pm

    Was wondering with todays lighter draw weight crossbows, most of which can be cocked by hand or rope cocker, utilize a foot stirrup. But I think medieval crossbows seemed to be too heavy for that, requiring other means to cock them and by doing so eliminating the need for a stirrup. Am I right in this assumtion because I don't many pics of ORIGINAL period crossbows with stirrups?

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    Post by Basilisk120 on Sun Aug 22, 2010 6:26 pm

    Looking through Payne-Gallway's Book of the Crossbow for stirrups. It looks like they were more common than you might think but not always were you expect them. The crossbows that use a cranequin don't have stirrups and the bows that use a Wippe also are lacking a foot stirrup. But surprisingly was that crossbows that used a windlass had a foot stirrup to stabilize the bow when it was being cocked. I was also surprised that from a quick glance it looks like none of the stone/bullet crossbows have a foot stirrup. Of course like all good medieval art the period drawings are a little ambiguous if the loop on the front of the crossbow is a foot stirrup or just a loop.

    So to sum up it looks like the matter of a foot stirrup or not is more a matter or the specifics of that crossbow than anything else. Sure there are some generalizations like small germanic crossbows that use a cranequin won't have a stirrup but I would hesitate to make too broad of a statement.



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    Post by juancheco on Sun Apr 10, 2011 12:25 am

    It may have been because people were stronger than now? Think about it....Soldiers used to fighting with swords, melee, weapons and heavy equipment handling....Today we are more gentrified than in those times....To much office, Wink gentlemen....
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    Post by vabowyer on Mon Apr 11, 2011 7:23 pm

    I think it might depend on when you are talking about. Lots of art work showing people using a belt hook. hard to do without a stirrup. Some show people using a stirrup when using a craniquin on larger size bows. I think it is a feature that may have went away more as time goes on, and my just the nature of things we have more newer bows than older ones to look at now.

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