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Ideas about catapult project

  1. Oct 31, 2013 #1
    I'm making a catapult in physics. Does anybody have any ideas of something I can install to the catapult to allow me to change the angle of the catapult to any given angle.
    Also for the trigger mechanism for the catapult what is something cool I could do?
    I was thinking something to do with magnets, but that might not work because the magnet might need to be very strong to pull the pin that triggers the catapult..
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 31, 2013 #2


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    Connect a chain between the arm and the frame that would serve to stop the arm after launch is triggered. To change the angle, just move the chain up or down a few links.
  4. Nov 1, 2013 #3


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    I suggest you learn how catapults have been designed already. Why try to invent in the dark? Use the good ideas already discovered by others!
  5. Nov 1, 2013 #4
    The overall catapult structure is the same
    It is just that our teacher told us to design a catapult that can shoot at different angles and has a unique trigger system..
  6. Nov 1, 2013 #5
    What is something similar to a jack that is installed to the side that can be used to change the angle. The catapult is about 2 ft by 2 ft by 2 ft
  7. Nov 1, 2013 #6


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    For launching at different angles: Take two squares of plywood of equal size and attach them together with a pair of hinges. Place the catapult on the upper square. Raise the free side of the upper square and place a wedge or block underneath. Slide to and fro for different launch angles.

    For a unique trigger system: show what you have now, please.
  8. Nov 1, 2013 #7
    The teacher said he didn't want us to do the wedge method to adjust the angle
    Also for the trigger I was thinking a string attached to a pin and the other side to a car maybe ? That can be moved by magnets?
  9. Nov 1, 2013 #8


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    For launching at different angles: look up "lead screw". This mechanism will allow continuous adjustment of launch angle by turning a threaded rod.

    Have you searched the literature for catapult trigger mechanisms? How are trebuchets triggered? How about crossbows? I repeat, use the good ideas of our predecessors...they have already found some good solutions. When none of that suffices for your project, then it becomes time to invent brand new, never before used mechanisms.

    Edit: Google is your friend. Learn to use it. https://www.google.com/search?q=cat...AMMfJsQSQ6IKYBA&ved=0CCkQsAQ&biw=1366&bih=683
  10. Nov 1, 2013 #9
    I searched up lead screw and I just have no idea how to install it or how much it will cost?? I saw someone use a some sort of jack before to adjust the angle.. Is there anything like that?

    I also searched up catapult trigger mechanisms before but the thing is I have to make it somewhat unique.
  11. Nov 1, 2013 #10
    Basically, how do I make a catapult with adjustable angles?
  12. Nov 1, 2013 #11


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  13. Nov 1, 2013 #12
    So can I put a slab of wood then another slab of wood on top (connected by hinge) where the catapult will sit
    And then install the jack one on both sides? Do u think that will work?

    do they sell jacks that are smaller? because my catapult is not going to be very big..
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2013
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