Re: [SCA-Archery] Crossbows/English Longbows
- Another factor to consider with the late period steel prod arbalests is
the throw weight of the weapon. The modulus of elasticity of the steel
prod means that a heavy bolt can be thrown with the same speed as a
lighter one. This heavy bolt will lose less velocity to friction and
drag allowing it to travel further and will retain much more of its punch
power at longer range. While this ability to deliver high impact at
longer range is of little use to us in target archery, it was a
significant factor in a military arm.
On Thu, 29 Jul 2004 00:06:49 -0400 "Bruce R. Gordon" <obsidian@...>
> It is generally true that crossbows have significantly slower
> rates of fire than handbows, although that can't be taken as an
> absolute - ROF stats are bell-shaped curves, and the ELB curve
> the Xbow curve to an extent. By which I mean that a light poundage
> overhead-release crossbow is likely about as fast or perhaps even
> slightly faster than some handbows, particularly in the hands of
> someone who is experienced with it. But the heavy, elephantine siege
> arbalests with attached cranequins are going to fire very slowly
> As for range, that's a very complicated subject. Xbows tend to
> heavier poundage than handbows, and so at first glance they would
> to have a better distance. But their stroke (the distance from the
> to the pulled-back string at full cock) is so much shorter than a
> handbow at full draw that the handbow catches up. It's thought that
> classic period ELBs could reach roughly 240 to perhaps as much as
> yards on overdraw - a light poundage hunting Xbow might do well to
> reach 200 to 250 yards. But, once again, Xbow fans are rescued by
> big military arbalests. Late period models achieved perfectly
> ridiculous poundages: common standards were 400 to 900 lbs pull, and
> few models reached in excess of 1500. At that level, ranges well in
> excess of 300 yards are possible, even with a short stroke. In a
> trial in 1901, Sir Ralph Payne-Gallwey, the author of a well-known
> treatise on crossbows, fired a reconditioned 1200 pounder across the
> Menai Straits (the body of water separating mainland Wales from
> Anglesey Island), sending bolts about 440 to 450 yards. In another
> series of tests with somewhat lighter poundage pieces, he achieved
> ranges of between 370 to 390 yards.
> So, it sorta depends on your weapon, I guess.
> Nigel FitzMaurice
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