Don’t confuse this with a catapult. It’s a trebuchet — the perfect weapon for storming the castle or, since this one is tabletop size, hurling treats across the yard to see if your dog will chase them.
It’s also a Christmas present from my wife, who bought it at (natch) trebuchet.com. It’s a kit — it consisted of a box filled with wooden parts and some easy-to-follow instructions. I put it together over a couple of nights — and it took that long only because I had to stop and wait many times (usually for an hour at a time) for the wood glue to dry. I had to pick up a couple of bar clamps to put the thing together, but those are useful and inexpensive anyway, and anyone with just a little bit of mechanical skill should have little problem assembling this kit.
I first was exposed to trebuchets at the World Championship Punkin’ Chunkin’ a few years back, and as soon as I saw the sling hurl a pumpkin hundreds of feet, I was hooked. This video shows smaller models in action — as well as one large model that has no trouble handling a bowling ball. Enjoy.