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Re: Technological prerequisites for clockwork?

Posted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 5:48 am
by Ollock
cybrxkhan wrote:
Rodlox wrote:
Ollock wrote:
Hmm, so it was used. Interesting. I wonder what you would do if the bolt got jammed somehow,


probably the same thing as if your bullet jams in your gun: either use the gun as a blunt weapon, or toss it to one side.


That's also why historically, most Crossbowmen and Musketmen in the medieval and early renaissance carried swords or some kind of melee weapon. Actually in a lot of cultures troops would still carry a melee weapon alongside with the musket anyways.


Torco wrote:It must also have to do with the fact that archers can be attacked by mele, they shouldn't but it sure did happen.


All true. Even today soldiers are trained to use their guns as melee weapons, as well as carrying knives (sometimes still affixed to their guns as bayonets) and being trained in unarmed fighting techniques. It seems if you don't train your troops for every eventuality they could be lost in a real fight.

What I meant about the bolt jamming wasn't so much about what to do in the moment. Clearly you'd throw it away and draw a sword or spear for melee. But later, when it's recovered -- repairing it could be a pain with that enclosed magazine. I suppose if you're lucky you can pull it out from opening at the bottom. Otherwise somebody's going to have to get a hook to fish that bolt out. And looking at the way they were loading it in the video, I imagine it got jammed quite often.

Re: Technological prerequisites for clockwork?

Posted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 1:10 pm
by Okuno
Zaarin wrote:Yeah, that's what I was thinking, too, yet for all that the Wikipedia page seems to imply no one thought of it until Galileo...


Of course, I'm thinking also that you don't necessarily need a pendulum to keep uniform time in a clockwork apparatus. If I'm guessing right, the way a clock works is that the pendulum operates a release latch which lets a weight fall very slightly, the falling weight then powers the mechanism.

However, if you instead used a sequence of pulleys, you might be able to get weights to fall slowly enough without a timer. The only difficulty is in transferring spent weights back to the top, which if it isn't done precisely, could cause some out-of-synch behavior. I think there must be around it though.

OTOH, all of that is just based on a guess of what you need a pendulum to actually do, so...

Re: Technological prerequisites for clockwork?

Posted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 2:19 pm
by Torco
Okuno wrote:
Zaarin wrote:Yeah, that's what I was thinking, too, yet for all that the Wikipedia page seems to imply no one thought of it until Galileo...


Of course, I'm thinking also that you don't necessarily need a pendulum to keep uniform time in a clockwork apparatus. If I'm guessing right, the way a clock works is that the pendulum operates a release latch which lets a weight fall very slightly, the falling weight then powers the mechanism.

However, if you instead used a sequence of pulleys, you might be able to get weights to fall slowly enough without a timer. The only difficulty is in transferring spent weights back to the top, which if it isn't done precisely, could cause some out-of-synch behavior. I think there must be around it though.

OTOH, all of that is just based on a guess of what you need a pendulum to actually do, so...

in theory any energy source would do: the best ones would be those that are perpetually available, such as some sort of hidromechanical device: the water moves thingies, the thingies raise weights, and since the weights drop time is constant, you just built a clock.

That's how some of my conclocks work anyway.

Re: Technological prerequisites for clockwork?

Posted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 2:24 pm
by cybrxkhan
The Chinese polymath Su Song devised a clocktower that used water. I'm not sure about the specifics, but you can read about his invention on his wikipedia page.

Re: Technological prerequisites for clockwork?

Posted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 2:56 pm
by Torco
most excellent, dude