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Is it not more logical, from an experimental archaeology perspective, to extrapolate thematically from what appears to be a roaringly good idea?  For example,  Tangs and Loops and Wedges. When we see TLW in the artifacts (actually implied wedges) then why not more of this same excellence elsewhere in the design.  A take-apart stand for example, winch components that knock down into sub-assemblies (like Firefly), a catch and trigger mechanism that can easily be dismounted. Improvements like this are thematically consistent with the found artifacts and including them might well be considered more “authentic” than not including them.  A prosaic solution, like using rivets to hold the machine together in certain key areas, would impede the functionality of a take-apart strategy, and is thus a diminution of the inventor’s obvious intent made apparent in the aforementioned TLW. Here “prosaic” may not be as Occam as we think. All of the available facts have to be considered. A take-apart “intent” is indisputably apparent in all the surviving artifacts of iron frame ballistas.

In this game, parsimony can be as much an enemy of the truth as extravagance.

— There, one more deck chair moved.

Phoenix’s field frames are almost completed.  I’ll post photos as soon as the burnishing bug can be driven back into it’s lair. Tomorrow I must reline my not-so-trusty forge and get ready to thump two nice pieces of 4140 carbon steel into tangs for the Kamarion.  The steel  for the vernier plates is on the mill ready to cut.  Sleep now.


Update:  Awake now.


Burnishing bug subdued, the field frames are completed.  All dimensions are per the Kayumov/Minchev drawing. For all practical intents and purposes these pieces are duplicates of the original from Elenovo.

I get the eerie feeling that the proportions of these field frames are exactly the same as I would choose if I had a free hand in the matter and were not just doing the duplication bit.  The agreeable symmetry of the loops and end caps, plus the massive cross section of the curved stanchion, gives a sense of confidence and connection I never quite had when reconstructing the Orsova frames.  A good omen we hope.

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