Welcome! - Home of the 2012 World Champion Punkin Chunkers!
A Brief IntroductionWelcome to the new-and-improved website for Team Urban Siege. Team Urban Siege is a group of friends that have been building trebuchets since 2006 and competing in the World Championships of Punkin Chunkin since 2008. This website chronicles our team's work and also attempts to provide information on building trebuchets, the weapon of choice for mass destruction in the Medieval Era. Soon there will be design information for arms, axles, slings, frames, counterweights, and a whole lot more. Not only will there be discussion as to how they work, but suggestions as to how to keep your various trebuchet parts from breaking will be here as well. There will even be some free plans for smaller trebuchets to get you started in this fun hobby!
But most of all, this site is dedicated to exhibiting our work. Before 2011, Team Urban Siege was well-known in the hurling community for highly-efficient designs. Medieval Postal Service was a breakthrough machine despite not being designed to WIN. However, that has changed with 2011. Our new machine, NASAW, the North American Sliding Axle Whipper, is a first-of-its-kind, incredibly-efficient and super-long-distance-throwing trebuchet. In just it's first season, on only it's 13th shot EVER, NASAW nearly took out the 7-time World Champion Steve Siegers and his new mammoth machine Yankee Siege II with a shot of 2316.17 feet! In 2012, we managed to beat Yankee Siege II and the rest of the field and take FIRST PLACE at the World Championships of Punkin Chunkin! We have the second-longest-throwing trebuchet IN THE WORLD and it's only beginning to get tuned in!
2016 Demo Schedule
Sept. 24 (Rain Date 9/25):
For the past 3 years, we have demoed NASAW at Wickham Farms in Penfield, NY during their Pumpkin Fest. Due to various circumstances, we will be unable to bring NASAW itself for 2016, however we will still be there! Team Urban Siege will bring a couple of our smaller trebuchets (some are seen here and here on our site) that we have made over the years, and fire them off all day. They may not be as large as NASAW, but some of these machines can still throw upwards of 1000 feet! Come on by, we will be shooting fairly steadily between approximately 11:30AM to 3:30PM. Ask us questions, check out the machines, and myabe even pull the trigger on one yourself!
The WCPC is returning to the Bridgeville field for 2016. While it has been cancelled for the prior 2 years, things are looking promising for a return this year, with insurance straightened out, a landowner agreement in place, and the added benefit of the property being one the Association has 7 years of experience with in regards to layout and such. We hope to see you there!
SponsorshipTeam Urban Siege would like to thank all of our sponsors, past and present. These include:
Great Lakes Pressed Steel, who made Medieval Postal Service possible by donating the steel and aluminum used, along with allowing us use of the machine shop there and the services of Glen, who did all of the welding for the machine. They were also invaluable in the construction of NASAW, our new competition trebuchet.
Creative Hands Custom Blinds and Window Treatments for wood shop usage, machine storage for most of our collapsible trebuchets, and help with constructing all of our pouches since Jeckyl and Hyde.
Wickham Farms, who was very helpful in finding us ideal test ammunition (pumpkins) at the last minute before the 2010 World Championships, and who has helped us out ever since by growing some particularly hurling-friendly breeds of pumpkins. We send them flying well over 2000 feet!
Thanks also to all others that have donated, time, materials, and even money to the team. A further thanks to those that helped out in other ways. Most of these are listed on the left.
All information found with this site or at other sites linked to from here is used at the sole risk of the user. Team Urban Siege and its members will be in no way responsible for any damage or injuries suffered from the use of this information.
Use "common sense" when operating trebuchets and catapults. Even little ones can be dangerous. Do not place anything you are not willing to lose in the plane of the arm rotation (this includes yourself, body parts, car windshields, cameras, etc). These catapults and trebuchets are capable of throwing just as far backwards as forwards, and the use of a backstop of some sort is recommended, though the use of one does not make the region behind it safe.
Also, just because the throw got away safely downrange does not mean the end of the danger. The arm is likely still swinging wildly along with the counterweight, and there is a sling whipping around. One thing many people fail to take into account is this sling; some people put a metal ring on the slip end of the sling and this ring can HURT when whipping around!
Have fun hurling, but please KEEP IT SAFE!!!
Last week, it was announced that the World Championships of Punkin' Chunkin' (WCPC) will be returning in 2016 to the Wheatley Farm in Bridgeville, DE, site of the event from 2007-2013. The insurance issues that necessitated moving the event from the farm field have apparently been resolved such that we chunkers (and fans!) are welcome on the property again, as the landowner and his insurance company are now satisfied of adequate landowner protection. It should be pointed out that the Wheatleys themselves are Punkin Chunkers (United Flingdom III), and did not want to ask the event to leave, but situations were such with the on-going 2013 lawsuit from the 2012 incident that they needed to do what they did. We are thrilled that they will have us back, and are looking forward to chunking again in 2016! More information can be read in the official press release and in the Sussex County Post. Team Urban Siege looks forward to returning to Delaware to chunk punkins with all our friends from November 4-6!
Since the 2015 World Championships of Punkin Chunkin ended up being cancelled for the second year in a row, we were once again left without a hurling event to go to. A number of phone calls and emails ensued, and we decided to go off to the chunk happening at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway, the Extreme Chunkin, which was only 2 weeks away (October 24 & 25) when the Delaware cancellation was made! We had not really tuned NASAW to shoot for distance in 2 years, but we really wanted to compete with some of our hurling friends again, so plans were set for us to go! Some last-minute tuning was done with about 3000 pounds of counterweight (roughly what our last shot at the 2013 WCPC was with), but unfortunately one of those shots resulted in bending a main section of the throwing arm. Luckily we still have the original throwing arm, which was the one we shot with in 2011 and 2012, so that was installed just a day before NASAW hit the road for the long drive from Western New York to Loudon, NH.
Yes, the 2015 World Championships of Punkin Chunkin, scheduled to be held at Dover International Speedway on November 6-8, are cancelled for the second year in a row. The Association was unable to obtain an insurance contract for the event this year given all the legal issues that have surrounded the WCPCA since the accident and lawsuit several years ago. Suffice to say we chunkers were once again given short notice of the cancellation (the news broke October 8), and chunkers and fans alike have been left scrambling. Delaware was going to be our only out-of-state trip of 2015 due to our busy schedules, but we have made the last-minute decision to rush off to New Hampshire and compete there with our friends from Launch-Ness Monster, Yankee Siege II, Onager, and more. We haven't tuned for distance shots in 2 years (that is currently changing), but NASAW has been firing very nicely for the last 2 years so we hope to put on a good show and hopefully set a new personal best distance. For more information on the NH chunk, visit the event site now! Stay tuned here or on our Facebook page for updates!
Many people have been asking us what our plans our this fall with regards to launching pumpkins. Our confirmed schedule is listed at the top of the home page. As noted there, the World Championships of Punkin Chunkin is NOT a distance competition this year. The field at Dover International Speedway is simply entirely too small. In fact, at this time we are not sure exactly WHAT, if any, competition it will be this year. There has been talk of a "call your distance" competition, with closest to their called distance winning, but this has not been finalized. There are also a number of distance competitions popping up around the US this fall, which will see attendance from a lot of the teams that normally compete in Delaware. We would be attending one of those if our schedules allowed, but unfortunately it doesn't look like that will happen.
Hey, Team Urban Siege fans in the Rochester, NY area. The Rochester Museum and Science Center has been running an exhibit for the last 6 months or so entitled the "Inventor Center". Every few months they have a different hands-on design challenge, and the latest one is right up our alley! It is a projectile launcher challenge, and we were contacted to help provide some content and advice for their exhibit. Among these, our first team trebuchet, Melon Felon, is on display in the exhibit space for inspiration! The exhibit just opened yesterday, and runs through the end of this school year, in mid-June. Go check it out and let us know what you think!