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Fall Updates

It has been a busy fall for Team Urban Siege, but not so much on the hurling front. However, there is more than a little of that news to report. Read on for more:

1 - This summer, Mini-NASAW was rebuilt. Mini-NASAW was first built with a wooden frame in 2010, and was at the time nicknamed GRAW. It was the prototype for the basic design that would become our World-Champion trebuchet NASAW, complete with vertical tracks, auto-closing gates, etc. But being as it was made with a wooden frame, including the tracks where all the wheels traveled, meant that it got beat up over time with what was hundreds of shots. The last time out, during a demo in the Spring of 2015, multiple pieces got splintered and the time had arrived for a new frame. This time around, the frame was made completely out of steel, both for the durability with all the wheels, but also to help smooth out the travel of the carriages. It was barely finished in time for our annual demo event at Wickham Farms, but it was done, and it performed marvelously. A photo gallery has been set up for this machine, mostly filled with build pictures right now, but some more will be added with time, along with any old pictures we can find of the old wooden-framed machine.

2 - Matt attended the Extreme Chunkin in New Hampshire. NASAW did not go this year, as the rest of the team was busy getting ready for the World Championships in Delaware a few weeks later, but as Matt lives in the area he made sure to go and get some pictures. A gallery for that event has also been set up. The event was even better than in 2015, with more destruction (as but one example, Yankee Siege threw many pianos, water bombs, a motorcycle, a boat, a car, and a 1300-pound pumpkin!), new teams, and even a new unofficial world record (the catapult Chunk Norris shot a pumpkin 3088', the first competition 3000-foot shot by a catapult)!

3 - This update is being written from a hotel room in Delaware! Yes, the World Championship of Punkin Chunkin, after 2 years of cancellations due to insurance troubles, is going to happen! NASAW will be arriving on the field tomorrow morning and we will be setting it up along with teammate Nick's Human-Powered Centrifugal entry the Buffalo Wing Slinger. Many other teams are already set up, and many, many more should arrive tomorrow. We may be able to post an update or two on this site throughout the weekend, but for sure there will be occasional updates on our Facebook page, so stay tuned there for the next 4 days as we shoot pumpkins with our other chunkin friends on the big field in Delaware! And yes, Science Channel will be producing a show about this year's event, airing Saturday night after Thanksgiving. Kari and Tory from the Mythbusters along with Kyle Hill, will host.

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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!!!