Mecano Challenge s05e12
Titre original : Car Flinger
Triumph, trauma and the trebuchet
Scrapheap's grand final 2002 saw the Barley Pickers line up against last year's winners, the Cat-alysts, in our most awesome challenge ever: to fling a Mini over the horizon.
As reigning champions, the Cat-alysts were first up. A pink Mini was loaded onto the dolly and the catapult was primed. But the chain used to winch down the Mini and dolly suddenly snapped. As the chain dragged over the ground, lots of the elastic's energy was lost, and the Mini barely made it to the end of the ramp. Zero distance for the Cats.
The Barley Pickers' trebuchet was by far the biggest – and scariest – machine that Scrapheap has ever seen. To launch it they had to winch 4 tonnes of lead to a height of more than 6 metres. Two team members then had to go in close to put the firing pin in place. Scrapheap veterans couldn't remember a more tense moment, but all went well and the machine was ready to launch. Then disaster: as the huge trebuchet arm swung down, it appeared to twist, causing the whole contraption to explode. 'I don't think we'll be repairing this,' said TC Paul.
However, with the Cat-alysts failing to record a distance for their first throw, the Barley Pickers were judged to be in the lead, as their Mini did move – albeit backwards. Everything depended on the Cat-alysts last throw. They added two extra bungee ropes and prayed.
This time everything went according to plan. To a huge cheer from the assembled crowd, a Mini was launched into the stratosphere … well almost. With a respectable distance of 15.5 metres, the Cat-alysts were crowned champions of champions 2002.