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    Goatsfoot lever or Cranequin?

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    Post by ferdinand on Sat Jan 19, 2013 3:08 am

    I am looking to build a goatsfoot lever or cranequin for my "halbe rustung". i think it originally is done with a cranequin but that is maybe a little to much to make for me, maybe later. I think a goatsfoot will do fine for now, anyone have some advice for me on how to build or what things to take in to calculation?(u still get what i mean?)
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    Post by chaz on Sat Jan 19, 2013 4:16 am

    Ferdi,

    Go to google books The Crossbow by Payne -Gallwey and starting on page 84 there is information on the goatsfoot lever ( hopefully you have the book) in the next few pages it has good drawings of one. He says they were used by mounted crossbowmen. It appears that the placement of your leverage pins mounted on the tiller would have a lot to do with the configuration of the lever and of course the distance from the string at rest and the nut. No doubt it will be excellent when it is done.

    Cheers Chaz
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    Post by Geezer on Sat Jan 19, 2013 7:02 am

    Geezer here, concerning goatsfoot or cranequin:
    I have made quite a lot of crossbows with goatsfoot levers (also known as a 'gafa' or 'gaffle') They're efficient, strong and span a medium-weight medieval bow very quickly. (should be workable for bows up to 400-500 lb, depending on your setup.) Most of my lightweight crossbows (70 to 180 lb) measure @ 11 inches from prod-socket to lock, and another 2-3 inches to the gafa-pins. The gafas I get from Darkwood Armory work well for me.
    A couple of years ago, I built a very fancy 300 lb. German sporting bow for a customer. We fitted it with a cranequin from Matuls in Poland. The machine was well made and worked like a charm. Cost was reasonable... under $400
    As for convenience, a cranequin loads much slower than a gafa... you might get one shot a minute, with some practice with a cranequin, but 3 or 4 with a gafa. (actually, with a well set-up rig, I think an expert might get 5 or 6 unaimed shots a minute with a gafa, but actual service-rate for aimed fire would probably be no more than 4... but that's another thread entirely.)
    Anyhow, if you want to make your own, I think a goatsfoot would be easier to construct, and the Payne-Gallwey plan will work very nicely.
    A wooden 'wippe' lever, as illustrated in P-G is also an option, but in my experience, the gafa is quicker, more efficient, and if you build the folding model, it's much more compact.
    So go to it! Geezer.
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    Post by ferdinand on Sun Jan 20, 2013 5:40 am

    Goatsfoot looks like the best option! Will get back once i have pibdtures!
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    Post by African Archer on Mon Jan 21, 2013 3:48 am

    I second everything geezer said, a goats foot is far lighter than a cranequin and much easyer to store in a pack , I'm keen to build one for my next bow so let us no how it turns out
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    Post by ferdinand on Mon Jan 21, 2013 3:17 pm

    A little rough still, but i will make it pretty once i get it to work propperly!
    It handles the forces fine, but it lifts the string to much. Need to adjust a little. I didnt make a folding one(yet..).
    Also need to make the hooks flatter, they leave an impression in the string.
    The trigger mech works, got a test shot off!!! But the string did stretch, is that normal? I used masonry cord wich i pre-waxed, 24 strings endless.Goatsfoot lever or Cranequin? DSC_3857Goatsfoot lever or Cranequin? DSC_3853
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    Post by shiloh on Tue Jan 22, 2013 5:06 am

    That`s awesome, wish I could weld or had access to someone who can.
    I think I`ll attempt one, but from hard wood, with key metal parts, and rivets.

    Rick
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    Post by chaz on Tue Jan 22, 2013 8:32 am

    Ferdi,

    Looks great !

    Chaz
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    Post by ferdinand on Wed Jan 23, 2013 2:58 am

    shiloh wrote:That`s awesome, wish I could weld or had access to someone who can.
    I think I`ll attempt one, but from hard wood, with key metal parts, and rivets.

    Rick
    Welding is not that difficult shiloh! Basics of electrode welding u can master in a few days, and a second hand machine costs maybe 75 euro's.
    A mig-welder with flux-wire has no need for a separate gas-bottle and should not cost more then 200,- dollars new! Be sure to buy one that at least goes to 150 amps. Migwelding is even easier! It really adds to ur skill and possibilities!
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    Post by shiloh on Wed Jan 23, 2013 4:37 am

    I shouldn`t have said I can`t weld, my father was a master welder at one time and I`m sure some of that must have rubbed off. It`d be a matter of getting a machine practicing and reading up on metallurgy.
    Many times I`ve looked at getting a gas mig, but other things always seemed to get in the way. One of these days when I`m tired of paying to get little jobs done, I`ll break down and justify the purchase.

    cheers
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    Post by chaz on Wed Jan 23, 2013 6:59 am

    Shilo,

    You might check pawn shops if you have any, I purchased a nice lincoln flux core wire welder for $100 out the door ......... at this point its abilities exceed mine ...... but its a blast !

    Chaz
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    Post by shiloh on Wed Jan 23, 2013 11:05 am

    Chaz,

    Yes we have a pawn shop, but they never have anything cool like welders, mostly i-phones, video games and diamond rings.
    Though I do frequent Kijiji, quite often, always lots of cool stuff there.

    Anyways, back to the lever, I worked on mine for a bit and gave up, I think I`ll probably buy one when I get back to work.
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    Post by ferdinand on Wed Jan 23, 2013 3:43 pm

    Why not make one of those pushing lever things.
    They hook in to the stirrup and push the string.
    They can be made out of wood quite easy!
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    Post by ferdinand on Thu Jan 24, 2013 3:40 pm

    So far so good! I got it to work! Havent finished it totally but thats just cosmetically.
    A fancy twist in the handle bar and an old wooden file handle make it all complete.
    Tell me, dont that just look mighty fine?! Excuse the southern way of speakin, just saw "Django" from Quentin Tarantino. It kinda rubs off on a man( by the way,so did the bottle of 20 year old Port haha).Goatsfoot lever or Cranequin? DSC_3862
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    Post by African Archer on Thu Jan 24, 2013 9:53 pm


    Very very nice, just a thought , what about a polish and a coat of gun blue, very impressed Ferdi
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    Post by ferdinand on Fri Jan 25, 2013 3:13 am

    I happen to have some birchwood & casey. Hmm, that might look nice! But would it be period correct? I'll think about it! Thanks!
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    Post by African Archer on Fri Jan 25, 2013 3:24 am

    The other option is to give it a nice coat of fine red rust and then card it off and do it again till you get the color u looking for, there is plenty online on the prosses
    and probably will be correct
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    Post by ferdinand on Fri Jan 25, 2013 8:21 am

    For now i grinded the welds and gave it a mild pollish, i kinda like the grey and black spotted "old" metal look! It works like a charm so i guess that this is it guys!

    Thanks a lot everyone for help and advice.

    For the whole project i will continue on the ohter Topic called "Halbe Rustung". I am nearing completion!!
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    Post by Gnome on Fri Jan 25, 2013 3:55 pm

    That's a beautiful weapon but I really like the lever, Ferdi. I'm into custom bicycles and that looks like a gothic bicycle fork to me! How is your string holding up? Did it stretch a bit and stabilize? I guess I'm not clear what kind of fiber you were working with.

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    Post by Zardoz on Fri Jan 25, 2013 5:44 pm

    ferdinand wrote:
    shiloh wrote:That`s awesome, wish I could weld or had access to someone who can.
    I think I`ll attempt one, but from hard wood, with key metal parts, and rivets.

    Rick
    Welding is not that difficult shiloh! Basics of electrode welding u can master in a few days, and a second hand machine costs maybe 75 euro's.
    A mig-welder with flux-wire has no need for a separate gas-bottle and should not cost more then 200,- dollars new! Be sure to buy one that at least goes to 150 amps. Migwelding is even easier! It really adds to ur skill and possibilities!

    Spend the few extra bucks for the gas mig. You leave a deposit for the bottle and it is cheap to fill. The flux core wire leaves slag on the weld which needs to be ground or chipped off especially before running another weld bead over it. With gas, if you weld it nice enough, you can clean it up with a wire brush. I use a MIG at work and I used to have a flux core welder at home. I sold the flux core and bought a mig for home.
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    Post by ferdinand on Sat Jan 26, 2013 7:00 am

    Cant say u r not right! Gas-mig does weld a lot prettier! But is a lot more expencive to buy at first! I have both a electrode and a fluxcore. It is more cleaning up in the end. I'll probably buy a gas-mig in the future.
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    Post by shiloh on Sat Jan 26, 2013 8:07 am

    Zardoz;
    I think that when I can justify the purchase, I`ll be leaning toward the gas-mig set up, does a much nicer job for sure.

    ferdinand;
    Your gaffe turned out awesome and good to hear it works to boot, my attempt at a wood/metal version failed, but I did manage to complete a well working example of a wippe(spelling?), even though it pushes the string, it`s a darn cite easier on the fingers, that`s for sure.

    Cheers
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    Post by Zardoz on Sat Jan 26, 2013 8:27 am

    A gas mig can pay for itself in other home and auto repairs. The ones at Harbor Frieght and the Hobart ones at Northern Tool ry reasonable. I have the Hobart 110 volt one. I think Miller makes Hobart.
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    Post by jds6 on Tue Jan 29, 2013 4:26 pm

    Great looking piece of work!! I have recently built a forge and been working with some ticklers, foot stirrups, and bodkin tips.
    Now time for a goats foot lever. How long is it from where the handle is attached (at weld)to the end of the feet.
    Great job!!

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    Post by ferdinand on Wed Jan 30, 2013 6:31 am

    jds6 wrote:Great looking piece of work!! I have recently built a forge and been working with some ticklers, foot stirrups, and bodkin tips.
    Now time for a goats foot lever. How long is it from where the handle is attached (at weld)to the end of the feet.
    Great job!!

    jds6
    I dont have any measurements. I build it to fit.
    But i can take some measurements if u want to. Wont be much use though, every bow is differend in the end. Its about 900mm total length.
    Its enough to span easily.

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