Parts of the CatapultAny catapult has some principal pieces – a throwing arm, a mechanism that will provide power to a throwing arm, and a “catapult lock” to hold a throwing arm in place. Obviously, a throwing art will need to move, so my husband used a few special Lego pieces to construct an axle for this catapult
Our throwing art was built with several thin 2x16 plates. It’s important to have several of those plates overlapping to add stability, otherwise your Lego piece might snap. Also, leave a gap for a rubber band between plates, this is what will give your catapult its power. Here is an upside-down view of a throwing arm.
Our hooks were specialty pieces, but you could just use studs to keep the rubber band in place. Hooks and caps, however, made it look a little prettier. You might want to experiment with the height of your catapult and position of your rubber band to ensure that the throwing arm has enough launch power to go straight up when launched.
Finally, you could just use your finger to hold the catapult down and then release it, but the catapult lock is a more “elegant” solution for this problem. My husband used a hinge piece that came with one of the sets to make his catapult lock.
Boy-Girl CatapultsMy husband also showed Smarty how to make a very simple “seesaw” catapult and we all had good time having a war with foam 3D shapes. Smarty couldn’t wait for her best friend to come over for a playdate to build some catapults with him. Both of them decided that their catapults need to be decorated. It was too funny to see “boy catapult” vs. “girl catapult”.
Boy catapult actually had a moving arm even though it had a tendency to fall off… It also had a driving wheel (but no wheels), and a computer monitor.
Smarty’s “girl catapult” had to have flowers and a lot of other decorative components including a pirate hat. I am sure enemies would flee in horror seeing her catapult on the battle field.
3D Printer CatapultTalking about catapults also prompted my husband to design a tiny Lego sized catapult and print it on our 3D Printer. Now he is working on a bigger Playmobil-size model that will also have wheels. It will be an awesome addition to our DIY Castle for Playmobil characters!
Did you build a catapult with your kids yet? What kind?
More Catapults for Kids?
- Frugal Family Fun for Boys has a terrific Lego catapult
- Red Ted Art has a video tutorial on craft stick catapult
- Fun-a-Day built a large outside catapult and used it for splash painting.
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