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Old 28th May 2022, 01:29 AM   #1
CSinTX
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Default A Heavy Weight Crossbow

More than two years, and I have now caught covid for the first time. Not being one to just sit around, a couple motrin and out to take some pictures of a crossbow Ive had for a while. I dont know a lot about it except it's big and heavy.

I think for castle defense? Approximate age? Does anyone know of similar examples? Period art work?

What time period were the four pins used to secure the parts?

I think the string is likely a replacement?

What would the empty holes in the top be for?

Is the trigger in its original configuration or would it have been fired with a lever when first made?

Lots of pictures!

Thanks a bunch!
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Old 28th May 2022, 01:30 AM   #2
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Old 28th May 2022, 01:48 AM   #3
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CS, have you searched the term 'crossbow' here for posts by matchlock?
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Old 28th May 2022, 01:10 PM   #4
fernando
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Interesting item indeed, Casey. What do you understand as big and heavy; can you tell its length and weight ?
Somehow it looks like this target example from the second half 17th century. Only that this one's stock length measures 935 milimeters and weighs 5 190 grams.
Can you take a picture of yours in the same position as this one i show? Just curious to know how 'different' they are .


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Old 28th May 2022, 03:42 PM   #5
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It is a Flemish/Dutch target crossbow from the beginning of the 18th century. It is not a combat bow to defend a castle.
With this crossbow, competitions were held, targets in the form of a wooden rooster were shot.
The winner was named "Gilde Koning" and was allowed to wear a silver chain with a King's bird as recognition for the coming year.

A round pin is pressed in one of the empty holes to tension the trigger spring, you can do this a simple with a screwdriver. ps The nut must be in the correct position.

The string of the bow was tensioned by a system of two levers with rope, pulleys and hooks mounted at the rear of the stock.

best,
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Old 28th May 2022, 04:30 PM   #6
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Ah ... betrayed by the absence of the so called English Windlass .
Excelent ID and comprehensive info, Jasper .
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Old 28th May 2022, 06:47 PM   #7
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I was able to get it weighed and measured.

Weight- 7.1kg
Overall length- 104cm
Width across the bow- 84cm
Thickness of bow where it enters the block- 1.25cm

This seems really massive and powerful just to shoot targets? A waste of resources in building. And a whole lot of extra work cocking it and just handling it in general.

Jasper, would you be able to get similar pictures with measurements of the one you posted?

Thanks!
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Old 29th May 2022, 08:15 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CSinTX View Post
I was able to get it weighed and measured.

Weight- 7.1kg
Overall length- 104cm
Width across the bow- 84cm
Thickness of bow where it enters the block- 1.25cm

This seems really massive and powerful just to shoot targets? A waste of resources in building. And a whole lot of extra work cocking it and just handling it in general.

Jasper, would you be able to get similar pictures with measurements of the one you posted?

Thanks!
sorry to re-confirm but it is 100% a Dutch Flemish target crossbow.

Mine the one on the pictures is even a bit "stronger"
lenght 97cm
width bow 90cm
thickness of bow @ block 2cm!

They are massive and had to be strong to shoot a rooster from a tower from a relatively large distance.

These ironbows were often marked, a small mark 3-4mm was struck in the bow , are there some remains to be found a bull's head or rooster or 5 pointed star or something else ?
best,
Jasper

Last edited by cornelistromp; 29th May 2022 at 11:44 AM.
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Old 29th May 2022, 10:16 AM   #9
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Long time i dream of having a (earlier) crossbow. I realize that, if they ever show up, would cost a fortune.

Here for your entertainment, Casey.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MMoL_SBD6gw


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Old 29th May 2022, 01:07 PM   #10
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I’ve got nothing to add that hasn’t been covered wonderfully above, except that the trigger mechanism with faux lever appears to be a dead giveaway of being a target model, my guess is 18th century.

What I find most appealing is that I see no reason to believe it’s Victorian, and it’s an excellent form for wall-hanging.

I’ve been on the lookout for a crossbow for an open spot on my wall, unfortunately I owe the demons at Hermann Historica an unfortunate amount of money at the moment. They are a nightmare to deal with.

There’s been a shortage of interesting crossbows at auction the last few years, with the exception the occasional bone-inlay piece.

Edit: My crossbow exposure is based on auctions and sales only. I have no authoritative texts, and my opinion means nothing.
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Old 29th May 2022, 03:50 PM   #11
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Thanks everyone for your input.

I can't find the remnants of any markings. I think it would show with the condition of the steel.

I also have to say, the metal work on it just seems older than 18th century.
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Old 29th May 2022, 04:04 PM   #12
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I spent a lot of time searching images yesterday and this is the closest similar example I can find. From a museum in Ghent. They describe it as 16th Century. It has the same trigger mechanism.

https://stamgent.be/nl_be/collectie/kunstwerken/09107
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Old 29th May 2022, 05:57 PM   #13
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I think they are too early with their dating.
attached a few dated examples:
cat no 3 dated 1697
cat no 5 dated 1721
cat no 6 dated 1756

I stay with the 18C dating and target crossbow.

from the publication Crossbows in the royal netherlands army museum.

best, jasper
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Old 29th May 2022, 06:25 PM   #14
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Cat. Nš 3 (pages 100-103), as per my post #4.That was my initial idea .
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Old 29th May 2022, 07:57 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fernando View Post
Cat. Nš 3 (pages 100-103), as per my post #4.That was my initial idea .
It was absolutely your idea and spot on .

best,
Jasper

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Old 30th May 2022, 01:49 PM   #16
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Thanks Jasper. I know it may seem that I am being argumentative, but for me, it's important to be thorough in exploring as many trails as possible.
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Old 31st May 2022, 07:39 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CSinTX View Post
Thanks Jasper. I know it may seem that I am being argumentative, but for me, it's important to be thorough in exploring as many trails as possible.
No problem, it is a very good not to take everything indiscriminately. When I got my Target crossbow back in 2000 I had the same discussion with JP Puype, the former curator of the Army Museum.
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Old 31st May 2022, 09:52 PM   #18
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Default Another target crossbow

Very interesting thread, thanks! What is the age and origin of this target crossbow?
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Old 1st June 2022, 10:33 AM   #19
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Eftihis, it will be a late model, late 19th. century ?, with that 'complex' shiny trigger guard and the accuracy set (hair) trigger.
But don't trust my judgement .
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