The Trabuco which is also referred to as Balancing Trabuco was a siege weapon used in the Middle Ages. Armies used the machine to destroy masonry walls surrounding enemy holdings. They would launch projectiles weighing up to 140 pounds towards the desired target at high speeds. It was also used to throw ammunition over fortifications to inflict injuries to the enemies sheltering behind them. It was also used widely during the Crusades – Europeans used it to wreak havoc to those who were against the Christian movements.
How It Works
The Trabuco works by transforming potential energy contained in a counterweight on the effort side of the lever into kinetic energy that drives the ammunition on the load side. However, the system isn’t entirely efficient because some part of the potential energy is lost through friction and heat within the system. The speed of the projectile is directly proportional to the weight used. It could throw projectiles for up to 800 meters with a moderate amount of precision at http://www.em.com.br/app/noticia/economia/2017/07/27/internas_economia,887137/cenario-do-2-semestre-e-o-melhor-dos-ultimos-tres-anos-diz-trabuco.shtml.
The Evolution of Trabuco
Trabuco is a development of the contemporary sling or catapult. It was designed to carry better weight for more destruction during the ancient wars. The structure contains a relatively long piece of wood levered on an engine. The sling is tied on the longer side of the lever whereas the counterweight hangs on the shorter side. To provide extra effort, people pull the strings tied to the weight.
There were different variations of the Trabuco. The tensile Trabuco, for instance, was among the first ones to be established on priberam.pt. It was so big that it would take around 250 people to pull down the lever. A 140-pound load could be fired over a distance exceeding 80 meters.
However, due to their hard-to-build characteristic, the number of tensile Trabucos ever created was limited. Another problem experienced with this machine was poor coordination. Due to these problems, the weapon was used until the 11th century after which they were abandoned.
The Hybrid Trabuco
The evolution of the ancient war technology brought about the inception of the hybrid Trabuco. It resembled the tensile Trabuco with slight variations in its design. Weight was added to the shorter arm of the lever. This replaced the need for people to pull it down during its operation according to sinonimos.com.br. Besides that, the heavy weight gave it more sling power allowing it to hurl a load of up to 400 pounds. This type of Trabuco was commonly used in the Middle East (13th century) by Arab merchants.
During the Crusades, the Europeans saw the technology and were impressed. In fact, they borrowed its mechanics and added a few features. For instance, they made it possible for people to provide more firing power by exerting more effort on the weight. This development also improved the accuracy of the Trabuco and marked the onset of the counterweight blunderbuss.
The counterbalance blunder was fully developed by the thirteenth century and could throw even bigger destructive balls. A certain form of biological warfare was also rumored to evolve. It involved hurling disease-infected bodies into the enemy territory in an attempt to spread the infection. Other forms of ammunition used with this Trabuco included dead animals, sand barrels, human skulls, and horses to name a few.
The Trabuco was later phased out upon the evolution of gun powder and the cannon. However, its mechanics are still employed by teachers to explain problems relating to the potential difference, gravitational force, and kinetic energy. Some of the wars where the Trabuco was used include the attack of Burgos of 1475 to 1476 and the attack on Rhodes of 1480.