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  New Site Format
   As you know
  StampedeProject has
  become way more than
  just Stampede, Traxxas,
  to now include other
  RC brands, accessories,
  and cars. I still don't sell
  anything, I just
  enthusiastically promote
  those RC products I think
  are great.
   Take a look through
  the above li
  I simply had too much
  information for my
  old site format.
  More fun projects
  - Tony


  Please Private Message
  me Here on the
  Traxxas Forum

  Copyright 2007
  all rights reserved 


Click Here for MS Work Document
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By Tony Arnold - StampedeProject.com

In a previous life, long ago, I developed a cursory level of welding knowledge with a good old Buzz Box stick welder.  Those experiences allowed me to stick two pieces of metal together in a caveman "me got fire" sort of way - the simple welds were not pretty but functional.  Decades pass until a month ago when I decided a welder was a critical tool for me as a hobbyist and home fabricator.  This time around though, I decided on a MIG and Flux Cored wire feed welder. Based on numerous recommendations and my needs, I selected a Lincoln Electric Power MIG 140C.

Of course as soon as you mention you have a welder, friends, neighbors, andindex.1.jpg (117545 bytes) relatives show up with all sorts of relatively mundane welding projects.  There I sat with the 140C still in the box and I am trying to decide whose project to take on first.  Re-attaching a mulcher guide on a lawn mower, re-welding a trailer hitch, and fixing a cracked bike frame all seemed risky first projects.  A bad weld could have a significant damaging effect - more practice was definitely needed before tackling those projects , but what to practice on?  I can always count on my friend Tim for inspiration and his call went something like "...so we did this lame corporate team building exercise and I now have 40 feet of extra rebar, would you be interested in building a trebuchet?".  My response was simply "bring the rebar and I will warm up the chop saw and the new welder."

Don't know what a trebuchet is? It was the medieval war machine device the good guys used to defend the Castle in Lord of the Rings by hurling giant stones. In real history was used for both castle siege-ing and defending and flung everything from large flaming tar balls to dead animals. Our intent was simply to re-create a medieval trebuchet to hurl much less menacing golf balls. The rebar was pre-cut into handy 4' lengths and made a 4' tall and 4' long design simple and easy. Within a couple days and many Google IMGP7842.JPG (2346745 bytes) searches later, we had an arm design locked down and all that was needed to do was getindex.2.jpg (241717 bytes) to welding.

The documentation and DVD included with 140C was outstanding and provided me with a crash course in MIG and Flux-Cored wire feed welding the night before the project. Sure I did weld as some point but that was long ago and it was a good refresher to watch a DVD showing setup and use and still have the various manuals and welding references provided. 

IMGP7844.JPG (1639665 bytes)index.3.jpg (232856 bytes)I decided to start with gasless flux core welding and delay MIG welding for another day. The 140C comes ready-to-run if you are using the included spool of flux-cored InnerShield .035 wire as I did and makes for a quick and easy setup. Attach the clamp lead, plug in the gun, and thread the wire, reference the suggested settings grid under the welder's lide based on target metal gauge and in less than 15 minutes, I had slipped on my auto-darkening helmet and welding gloves and IMGP7851.JPG (2781679 bytes) was ready to weld. I started out with the bare minimum of a Northern Industrial Tool auto darkening helmet, a brush, lineman's pliers, welding gloves and an old long-sleeved cotton shirt.  

A testament to both the documentation and the ease-of-use of the 140C was that after throwing down no more than two test beads, I was tack welding our trebuchet's structure together and then finishing up all the welds.  Overall I am simply blow away how much easier the wire feed welders are to use than the old stick type. Although I seemed to just start to get the hang of things about half way into the project, the early ugly welds still held strong and for home and farm repairs that is all that really matters.  By the end of assembly I was doing bridging, overhead, blind, and vertical welds and throwing down some very impressive looking beads even going around rebar - all tasks I had a tough time with using a stick welder.   

Imgp6534.jpg (3068599 bytes)FINAL THOUGHTS
With the exception of briefly wanting a 220V stick welder to blast through the worst dirty and rusty pieces of rebar, the 140C performed flawlessly during the multi-hour welding job and is all I should ever really need and with the three year warranty, if I have problems I know I will be covered.  Sure a big 220V unit would be nice to avoid a double pass on thick pieces, however for my use the 140C offers impressive precision for smaller detail jobs and can even handle up 1/2" and larger rebar. The 140C delivered great welds right out of the box, with more experience the consistency and frequency of good also good-looking welds will improve to the point where a grinder and a paint job will not be required. Even without a welding introductory course, the DVD and included documentation will get you welding in little time.
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What about the trebuchet? In less than two nights, we had the final assembly complete with a 20lb counterweight and were hurling golf balls.  Our best-measured distance was an impressive 700+ feet. You
put a couple guys together and at one point they will want to throw something, build something, or set something on fire and our steel trebuchet allowed a couple guys fueled by only a pizza, Diet Coke, and
a Lincoln Electric 140C welder to do just that. A great memory and project all made possible by a simple to use welder.  

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6 pieces - 4' rebar (ladder braces & counterweight hangers)
4 pieces - 6.25" rebar (axle brace)
2 pieces - 16" rebar (axle brace)
2 pieces - 16" rebar (lower support-to-support braces)
4 pieces - 2' rebar (angle braces)
4 pieces -  4"x2"x1/8" plate (lower/upper ladder braces)
1 - broom handle
1 - 18"x1" square tube (broom handle should fit in tube)
1 - 35"x1" square tube (counterweight arm)
2 - 5"x1" square tube (counterweight arm yoke)
1 - 24"x1/2" steel rod (arm axle)
1 - 12"x1/2" threaded rod (counterweight axle & weight holder)
1 - 1/2" nut & 5 Washers
1 - 4"contruction nail (Sling pin)
1 - Heavy duty Eyelet
20lbs Steel weights
6'  of 1/4" rope
Leather for Sling

Basic Assembly
Assemble the structure as shown.
Target a 4:1 long:short arm ratio
Sling should hang at 36" long
Make trajectory adjustments with sling length and counterweight adjustments.


Sources:  Lincoln Electric - www.LincolnElectric.com