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TSO-C/D - Day 5 - The Rush Before The Siege

Tinkering School StaffComment
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Another beautiful day at Elkus Ranch, thankfully, because Thursdays are the hardest days here at camp. We just had a nice relaxing day at the beach and now we have to wind ourselves back up to start working. 

In the morning, the Queen gave out coins for things the Royal Court noticed on Tuesday (another tough working day!) and had us reflect on all the good things that happened. Members of Piki were rewarded for extensive tinkering on their ballista, being dedicated workers, pushing through tough situations when they arose, and getting a second story up on their castle without collaborator oversight. Members of Nooi were rewarded for asking "How Can I Help?" (it's our favorite question!), being willing to help at a moment's notice, working on a kingdom crest, and making mistakes and learning from them. Then, feeling refreshed, we went up the hill.

Team Piki started off with a meeting at the top of their castle. The whole team can fit on the top, to everyone's excitement. What will we work on today? Who will work on it?

Over in the Forest Kingdom, Zachary of Nooi lays out his plan for a slingshot-like weapon. 

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Savan and Kaitlyn discuss what needs to happen with the Nooi castle. The front wall is up and the roof is stable, but it still needs work. 

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The slingshot tower gets supports...

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...and Zachary approves.

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Meanwhile, Piki plays a vertical game of Twister while working out an idea for a giant wall made of bungee cords. The idea is that you'll be able to climb it and the ballistics will bounce off of it. Solid enough idea.

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The team soon discovers just how much work this will require. They scrap the idea in favor of a solid rock climbing wall.

The Piki offense team is working hard on their ballista. They have a groove down and an understanding of what needs to happen. They test along the way, and soon...

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The force of their [scary] powerful ballista tore apart an attachment point on their temporary structure. The team has been discussing safety precautions all along the way so no one will be injured, and this was still the case.

Later, when that piece has been replaced, the other arm starts coming together. Their system seems complex from the outside, but the ballista team understands its workings very well. 

Nearby, Alice is pleased with how Piki's Sun Unicorn crest is coming along.

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And with new ideas about how they'll fabricate their walls, Vince and Katherine tag-team sawing off some excess wood. Teamwork!!

Back on the Nooi side of things, Jasper gets the weapon tower ready for the mechanism that will allow their sling shot to aim.

Julie holds the mechanism while Jasper knocks some bolts into place. This mechanism lets them swivel vertically and horizontally. 

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Kaitlyn and Savan work on making their ladder safer with metal brackets.

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Eisen jumps in to help attach a tricky base support for the railings that will be installed later today. Shown: a classic partner drill push.

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Continuing with their world building this week, Victoria and Onion decide to create a moat. Filled with pine cones. They ask Collaborator Caroline what the verb is for a pick axe. She tells them it's "picking axe," and they do not find this humorous. They tell her to go collect pine cones as punishment.

 The pine cone moat, after a long afternoon of digging. "Also," Onion said decisively and seemingly out of the blue, referring to Victoria, "she's not the wife of a wealthy merchant. She's a peasant with a dream." This blogger enjoys these moments of sheer confusion.

The pine cone moat, after a long afternoon of digging. "Also," Onion said decisively and seemingly out of the blue, referring to Victoria, "she's not the wife of a wealthy merchant. She's a peasant with a dream." This blogger enjoys these moments of sheer confusion.

Alice and Mads discuss their trapezoid's upcoming sleeping arrangements. Alice makes the point that if they each have their own separate sleeping locations instead of a gender division, then they won't have to explain what gender is to their spider friends, especially since they're not sure how to tell a boy spider from a girl spider.

It is getting pretty late at night, so here's a whole bunch of delightful photos from today with no captions! Everyone was working so hard but the main things here are that Piki's main walls went up and became a functional climbing wall and Nooi's beautiful crest got attached to their wall.

Several tests of the Piki ballista happened, and the mechanism is so well constructed that we had to have yet another discussion of safety during these testing moments. Check out the motion blur in these photos!

There was also an impromptu pull up contest.

The Nooi slingshot system had a few tests but the final one was the most interesting. After getting the pulley system up higher, they pulled their sling back nice and tight and suddenly --! something snapped. When we went to check, we realized that the weakest part of the system was the sling itself, which tore itself apart. Tomorrow, we'll see what we can do to fix that.

And finally, the Piki ballista team stayed late into the evening to get both arms attached. Pictures tomorrow! We just finished playing another giant round of Dungeons & Dragons, we have a belly full of delicious mac & cheese, and it's time for bed. Tomorrow: THE SIEGE

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