For the purposes of my own sanity while voyaging this vast adventure that I somehow embarked myself upon a couple of years ago (i.e.  page one of this blog),  it will be psychologically helpful for me to disclose my most immediate masterplan to a wider audience.

Step (1)  The Hop.

There are a few hours left to get the winch cranking a load for real.  I have a confident conviction that it will be Groovy.  If it ain’t, it’s just a thing.  Things can be Fixed.

Step (2)  The Skip.

When we are back, we will know it because the shooting is good.  This will involve lots of fine adjustments to balance the torsion springs and get the bolts flying with as little wobble as possible. Tune to Learn.  Insight here will not be possible without the patience to pursue perfection.  (Yes, I know.  That sounds like one of those God-awful slogans corporations use to motivate their proletariat.  Bear with me.  It has a purpose.)

Step (3)  The Jump.

From that Learning, make a better set of limbs.    To include, but not limited to, more radical tapers ,  much lighter tips, and less steel at their base.  There is every indication that this will yield a significant boost to performance.  If we can take our current power levels that hover around 1700 ft lbs  (about the same as a 45-70) and increase them to around 2500 ft lbs  (about the the same as a 30-06), then we can engage in some flat shooting catapultery on a level the Romans themselves would no doubt appreciate.

At that point, we will be contemplating how best to tackle step (4), The Springboard.   (Access to springboard metaphor currently restricted due to insufficient data. )

Yes, what you always suspected, is true.   Around here, bs is not just bullshit alone.

2 Responses to “The Hop. The Skip. And the Jump.”


  1. Captn Harpoon says:

    – tune to reconfirm previous findings with rotation.

    – tune to learn. More rotation is good thing. More rotation more speed that simple. But, given we know there IS a speed zone one can utilize instead of merely adding more power or a longer runway – is how the application of power within the same parameters or draw length and/or rotation.

    Having a strong string tension at rest, as opposed to having a string at rest under the very minimum of tension.
    One should increase the machines effeciencies and the other decrease it.

    The actions if using the same rope (string) are predictable. Where you gain in one area, you lose in another, so results are pretty much the same. Some variables must introduced.

    Having varying length strings would be required in order to investigate the matter further…

    This goes hand in hand for my predictions that if string starts out under tension, then you will attain your 400fps (I say 425) with less than 90 degrees of rotation – 75 – 80? This is also with the new arm position but using same arms.

    With a slack string at rest, an additional 20 degrees at most. You still should have plenty of rotation left so the springs dont get overwound giving better memory for continuous useage and consistant speeds.

    As you know I use steel springs, but I cant stop working on her potential and rope bundle power. Firefly is pure awesome. Am getting some really surprising results from having close to zero energy left in springs at end of powerstroke.

    Something I think you should investigate as even a small increase in effeciency of the rope bundle springs would have a large effect due the to high loss due to friction.
    It might not be what I think, but you will hopefully learn something new and perhaps a new perspective on the proposed arm build. Its lot of time and effort so maybe the results will influence you one way or another. Result driven performance enhancements.


  2. Captn Harpoon says:

    Hey. I got to thinking about MY work and how much of it is related to Firefly, which seems to consume a lot of my thinking and designing for Firefly first, and then adapting that to use on my manuballista designs I hope to offer early next year.

    My first offering will be whatever final design Firefly ends up with or very close I imagine. A non-compounding torsion inswinger on a crossbow platform. 425 is fast enough for now.

    My calculations are that to mirror the five thousand lbs plus pull (depending on lever length)of the current arms I estimate at 30 inches, the corresponding draw weight for my ballista would be 166.5 lbs.

    This figure and expected performance of 425 or thereabouts is eerily reflecting the Scorpyd SLP 165 model: http://scorpyd.com/store100.html and also the expected performance of my offering.

    If I can get off the computer today long enough to hit the bank, I will order one today as the one I have is genetically altered.

    The point here is my friend, that Firefly will have the same capabilities as the hottest and most advanced technology can come up with. But is this simply “just good enuff”??

    Do you really think Firefly is gonna let you get away with leaving her thataway? Or, the CG’s simply content with “as good as” or “equal to”? You already know they have their ways to get your attention and call to action.

    We are both at a pivotal point here. I have shared a lot of what I know with a new “partner” of sorts to form “Ballistaca (Ballista.ca haha) on a handshake until we arrive at a final arrangement to put in stone. Suspicious and inherently a paranoid inventor its hard for me to maintain a complete 100% confidence its all going well when I havent heard from him in a couple of weeks.

    To make myself feel better, I am going to make you a vid sharing the “impact acceleration tech.” I designed for Firefly and them big honkin arms. I’ll ask ya as a gentlemen to keep it under your hat for awhile, but it should help influence your limb design a bit.

    I am on a drug trial for my emphysema and the one year trial is almost up. Hoping to continue with the next trial but no guarantees. So lets get this done. The next arm build after the current ones planned is a lonnnngggg ways off.

    I’d like you review again the work of (Pat B?) from February 3 again, as I just did reading it over several times until I understood the numbers he posted.

    Although he shared the results of his formula (a “couple” of days work) which must have taken him some time to do CORRECTLY. It has a little more significance to it than merely provide a guideline or map to the “sweet” spot of the stroke. Where it all comes together.

    As expected his math kinda broke down during the last few degrees but infinite velocity potential is kinda neat eh?
    Unfortunately (or fortunately) the math was for the arms at the normal rest position so we will never know the math for the new position.

    The Scorpyd crossbow in this respect might give you a few hints as to where the application of power or how and when it should be applied, if you look at the degree of actual rotation and movement of the limbs during loading and release (youtube). I have worked it out so that the cams provide about a one to six ratio arm movement to draw length in inches.

    The Scorpyd is only 165lbs pull. Imagine at 200 or 250lbs.
    So, the little vid of my Scorpyd ballista getting 175fps with a 350 grain is significant at 45-50 lbs draw.

    The vid clearly shows I have proportionately shorter arms than Firefly, and are in fact too long for the relatively short draw I have to work with. But I dont need longer arms as the pulley wheels provide an instant doubling of string speed to arm speed right from the get go at release.

    Naturally here the shorter arms would be better. The slight loss in string speed Pats works shows, is more than offset by the pulley use. In addition, we have increased the amount of power available to us throughout the entire rotation, but more importantly during the last few degrees where any improvement in applied energy has the greatest impact.

    So there is the current dilema to work through.

    Anyhow, the Impact Acceleration Tech, makes that pretty much a mute point, but should be investigated anyhow for the benefit of those less inclined for tin foil hat thinking when math is thrown out the window and of little use.

    The impact system simply seeks to access as much of the arms inertia at the end of the stroke, converting/transmitting that energy directly into the projectile. In this case the approach is use acceleration of the projectile as a rather ineffectual BRAKE for the arms. The arms, having constantly accelerated throughout most of the rotation carry a huge amount of KE or inertia.

    I dont care how fast your arrow is going before the point of impact, absorbing the energy of the fast moving log during those last few degrees of movement…this is where that infinite acceleration part kicks in, and where supersonic speeds are made possible. Just look at Pat B.s numbers.

    The added bonus of the extra rotation is that the direction of the string reverses as it passes the normal rest position. THIS IS NO DIFFERENT THAN WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU CRACK A WHIP. A duplicate action except that it happens in stereo as the ballista has TWO arms sharing a common string or whip.

    ONe last comment about Pat Bs math is that it serves to very accurately confirm my theories and observations concerning what actually happens during the stroke of the inswinger arm, and pointing out how to use the information to increase overall performance of our little projects.

    You will remember the sine wave you first observed in the rope when fired, and my resulting explanations/theories both here and on RAT.

    So, a BIG thank you to Pat B. I spent endless days sitting almost comatose while doing endless mental calculations, component designing, theorizing etc. It apparantly was not in vain. Took so damn long as I have a bad memory haha.

    I dont know whether I’ll ever get around to actually building the supersonic design. I’ve had so much fun in the pursuit, and once the first was done, I went on to develop more elegant solutions.

    Thus, the zero point energy system. ALL the energy must be able to be transmitted or passed along with little to no degradation. Rather it must be amplified or somehow “compressed” into that last minute movement.

    Rather a long way to say a vid is coming I guess and should hit the delete button on everything else. It occurs to me that if one were able to follow all my internet posts over the past ten years, I think the supersonic design is there scattered along the internets “ocean floor”.

    haha – a buried treasure hunt. Maybe Captn Harpoon is a fitting title – matey! Are you sure you dont want to build mini firefly’s with me?

    Anyhow, two thirty and time to head for the bank. I got a hot date with a Scorpyd 165 coming up.

    Almost forgot. Another internet friend sent me some custom heavy big game hunting arrows. One is 725 grains, one is 825, and the last 925.

    My manuballista testing at 166.5 is exactly 1/30th the draw weight of yours. The projectile weight of yours to draw weight is 1.5 grains per lbs.

    My manuballista at 166.lbs should be throwing out an arrow weighing 250 grains would be the correct weight ratio to mimic Firefly.

    I dont think they make a crossbow arrow that light? However using Mr. Harts math measuring the rope bundle energy loss at 68%, gives you a usable 32% of 5000lbs or a true 1600lbs of pull. 1/30 of that is 53 lbs.

    Thats about what the manuballista currently is give or take a few lbs.

    Using the new figure of 1600lbs of true pull, the ratio of projectile weight in grains to lbs regarding pull is now a lot diff. 4.68 grains per lbs of pull.

    My manuballista arrow weight with 166 lbs max ballista draw weight at 4.68 grains per – is 776 grains.

    Seems ???? At least those are the numbers I should be working with to mirror same conditions and power to weight ratio’s according to Professor Hart.

    Again no math wiz here but Pat B’ work kinda mirrors the graphs in Harts work as much as it can given Hart works with actual projectile velocities.

    Geez Im not only thinking out loud, but typing it… sorry for the length, and it should get deleted anyway.

    I have hinted before that as a slack string allows the arm momentum to turn the stanchion or stop into a simple fulcrum, but as such and only for the briefest of an instant the axis changes relative to the distance of the stanchion to the rope bundle axis.

    This happens at the end of the stroke where all that funky acceleration takes place. What happens if you take a medium fishing pole, give it an up and down motion like casting, but instead bring the last top third of the pole against a solid object so that only the top half continues its journey?????
    Instant acceleration is what. If that were a desireable attribute, then one might consider how to introduce more movement to that action…such as backing off the spring tension at rest.

    If you can follow this than the impact accel explanation vid should really turn your crank. Or winch…

    Again please dont make the impact tech shown in the vid public until its ends up either patented by yours truly OR…

    ON the final limb design. For some tinfoil cap thinking I cant get the shape the (lyre) or harp of some kind out of my mind. Its a little thing with both sides gently curved outrwardly, then coming back in topped by a big round (fob??).

    Oddly enough I think Leonardo came up with a crossbow design that is almost a spittin image of that lyre or whatever. Today if you look at the Horton reverse draw design its also there,and to a certain degree the scorpyd crossbow and also the Leopro….

    I just find it odd that that shape or components of the curvatures find its way into my designs as well.

    Have you studied Leonardos Springald? Bound to explode if it manages a shot, but again the design comes up. Not something to totally dismiss.

    3:24 and I cant stop typing. The bank does not stay open for me alone so bye. Must be a relief for ya.

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