Saito's Dojo


Joust-O-Matic build instructions

from Thaddeus Mactyre

Posted incomplete... I will follow up with more complete instructions... hopefully :)

This started sometime back when my knight, Sir Saito said he wanted me to come over and design a 'jousting machine' for his equestrian competitions. "...Um....what??", I think was my response. After some explaination, I took paper, pen and calculator over to his house. He was having a work day and several people were going to be there working on targets for the upcoming"William Marshall" event. He explained that he had used someone else's during a previous event, but no plans were available for replicating theirs. Having not seen the other one... and being somewhat unfamiliar with SCA equestrian activities, I bothered him every 5 minutes with more questions until I felt I understood the situation. What was needed was a device to visibly indicate a winner in a photo-finish situation. The first thing that came to my mind was the little yellow, plastic 'gate' that came with the 'Hotwheel' track from my youth. In concept, a fairly simple mechanism that you could see who won from the starting end of the track. Several suggestions from several people and many hours later, I ended up with what we have now. From the very begining, I was my desire to build something simple, reliable and make the plans accessable to the rest of the populace. More people... more fun... and more people to do 'horse-stuff' with my knight. :) 

I only ask that you not use these plans for profit. I give no warranty as to the safety of this device or the safety of this activity. You decide to get on a horse... or mule, you have taken a big step towards getting tossed on your head. Now, on to the plans!

The materials were about $100 when I built this. Except for a couple of small pcs of helmet padding and a fabric flag, everything came from Lowes. Nothing special. 1/2" plywood... some 2x4s, a 2x6, two 4x4s. The only thing slightly out of the ordinary was the fibreglass rod, but they had that too. I would recomend using at least a power mitre saw, if not a table saw to make the cuts so that they are nice and square... and dont forget your safety glasses!

Material List:

1 half sheet of 1/2" plywood
1 2x6 x 8'
5 2x4
2 4x4 (I used treated, but whatever is available will work)
2 Rubber door stops
1 3/8" dia x 4' fibreglass rod
1 box 1 5/8" lg wood screws
1 box 2 1/2" lg wood screws
8 threaded inserts, 1/4-20 ID threads. (this is essentially a tube with machine threads on the inside, and wood threads on the outside)
8 1/4-20 x 1" lg, round head screws
2 5/16 hex head bolts x 7" lg

1 1/4" dia x 3' steel rod
*hardwood* The BEVEL BLOCK and the PIN BLOCK are made out of hardwood. I used walnut... but thats what I had. Needs to be something tough.
water seal

Cut one piece of plywood 20"x 17" for the top
one piece 19"x 16" for the bottom
two pcs 20"x 14 1/2" for the front and backs
2 pcs 16"x 14 1/2" for the sides

4 pcs 2x4 x 16"
4 pcs 2x4 x 7 1/2" ?
4 pcs 2x4 x 6"
2 pcs 2x4 x 4 1/2"
2 pcs 2x6 x 19"
2 pcs 1 1/2" x 1 1/2" x 12" (cut one 2x4 to 12" and then rip it lengthwise)

2 pcs 4x4 x 7' for the uprights

for the base:

for the arms:
2 pcs 2x4 x 33 1/2"
2 pcs 1/2" plywood cut into 8" disks