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Here's How To Build A Good Ol' Fashioned Thanksgiving Turkey Catapult

By: Garrett Payne

Ready to have the most fun you've ever had at Thanksgiving?

Is that bar incredibly low because normally you have to spend your Thanksgiving talking to your weird cousin Karen who has three cats?

Well, we've got you covered either way with *fervent drum roll* a good ol' fashioned Thanksgiving Turkey Catapult, which'll at the very least give you something to talk about other than when you're gonna get married, or getting a real job, or [politics thing].

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Here's what you'll need:

  • 4 - 8' 4x4 wood planks
  • 7 - 8' 2x4 wood planks
  • 1 gate latch
  • 1 - 1x33" galvanized or black pipe (outside diameter 1 ¼") threaded on both ends
  • 2 - 1" pipe caps
  • 8 - 3" deck screws
  • 40 - 4" deck screws
  • 8 - ¼"x5" eye bolts with washers and nuts
  • 3/8" drill bit
  • 1 ⅜" drill bit
  • 4 - C303 springs
  • 4 - C331 springs
  • Small circular grill lid
  • Tape measure
  • Protractor
  • Circular saw
  • Power drill/ screw driver

Cut four 2x4s to 78 3/4" long. On one end of each 2x4, make two 35 degree angle cuts. At the other end of the 2x4s, make a single 35 degree angle cut.

Next cut two 4x4s to 60" long. Drill a 1 3/8" hole through each piece of wood 20" from one end. Keep the excess length from the 4X4s. The single cut of the long 2x4s will connect to the top of the 4X4s and the double cut will connect to the base.

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From an 8ft long 2x4, cut two pieces 33" long. This will help make a rectangle with two 8' 2x4s. The shorter wood pieces fit inside the longer ones. Make sure the thin side is facing down on all boards. Position the two 60' 4x4s on the inside of the rectangle midway from the ends and the diagonal pieces at the ends of the boards. Screw the diagonal boards using two 3" screws at the bottom and two 4" screws at the top followed by screwing the upright 4x4s in place. Screw the two 33" pieces in place to complete the rectangle with two 4" screws in the corners.

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Take another 8' 4x4. Drill a 1 3/8" hole all the way through the wood at 42". Thread the pipe thru the holes in all the 4x4's. Thread the end caps on the pipe.

Trim the excess 4x4's to 33". Attach one to the bottom of the 60" 4X4's in between the rectangle and attach the other to the shorter end of the 8' 4x4 arm. Take another 4X4 and cut a 33" section. Screw this on top of the 4x4 posts with four 4" deck screws on each.

Cut another section of 4x4 to 30". Add this between the diagonal side supports on the same side of the longest end of the middle 4x4. Use two 4" screws on each side.

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Add the small grill lid to the arm of the catapult with screws. Attach the gate latch to the long side of the arm and base where they meet. Then attach some cord or rope to the latch.

Drill 3/8" holes for the eye bolts evenly spaced on the 4x4's on the bottom cross section and the 4x4 section attached to the bottom of the arm of the catapult. Insert the eyebolts. Thread on the washers and nuts. Attach 2 springs to each other and then attach to the eye bolts -- do this four times.

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Pull down the arm of the catapult, latch the arm down, load the catapult, FIRE!

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