THIS BLOG IS DEDICATED TO MY TWIN BROTHER, BILL DYKES (1943-1995). WE WERE NOT ONLY BROTHERS BUT PARTNERS IN BUSINESS AND BEST FRIENDS! AND TO ALL THE "BUTCHERS" THAT HAVE PASSED ON TO THE BIG LOT IN THE SKY!

CIRCUS NOW OPEN!

2014 Convention

SAVE THE DATES

SAVE THE DATES

Friday, November 4, 2011


Punkin Chunkin team gearing up for Del. event

Posted 11/3/2011

By Earl Holland, The Daily Times of Salisbury

BRIDGEVILLE, Del. — When Jake Burton began participating in the World Championship Punkin Chunkin events as a teenager, he was seen as a Punkin Chunkin prodigy.As a 9-year-old, the Milton resident and current record holder for the youth and adult air cannon categories was already adept at welding and other mechanical skills.
Now a grizzled veteran at age 24, Burton is armed with his knowledge of engineering as he and his team, Young Glory III, participate in their 10th Punkin Chunkin. They've practiced since late summer.
"We started practicing after Labor Day," he said. "We pulled out the cannon, cleaned it up and made sure it was functionally sound. We've had some big shots in our practices as we've been measuring our data. We've got this thing pretty tuned up."
Young Glory III set their first record in 2003 as teenagers when they recorded a distance of 3,945.28 feet. They began using an 8-pound gourd to compete in the adult events, eventually setting the record of 4,483.51 feet and becoming the youngest adult winners in event history.
Burton said the process in which the team developed their cannon was a gradual one during the years.
"We did a lot of recycling, because, at 14, we didn't have a wad of cash," he said. "The original air cannon sat behind the guy's shop for years. We picked through a lot of salvage yards and we steadily built it up. This year, we bought two new valves that were $500 apiece and put on a new actuator. We've probably spent close to $40,000 for items over 10 years, and our cannon is pretty basic compared to some of the other machines you see there. Ours is just straight mechanics as there's no wires or anything high-tech."
Frank Shade, spokesman for World Championship Punkin Chunkin, said the devices used for launching the pumpkins can range from the simple to some of the more elaborate.
"The machine technology has grown immensely over the years," he said. "From using cut-down trees and car engines that used to cost $100, now to vehicles that can cost a quarter of a million dollars if built from scratch. We even have some wooden machines that may not cost more than $200 for tools."
Donny Jefferson and his team, Bad to the Bone, have taken home first place in the centrifugal category for the last 15 years. Jefferson said the device, which they've used for the last decade, has had no alterations made.
"It's just a time-proven method with a lot of consistency," he said. "The biggest thing with any competition is that it all depends if you have the perfect pumpkin or not. It's got to be good, hard and solid and if not, it's not gonna work."
Burton said his engineering background has helped him take a different approach when it comes to launching pumpkins.
"It definitely helps you think outside the box," he said. "There's nothing you can Google about what makes a pumpkin fly so far."
http://www.punkinchunkin.com/

No comments:

Post a Comment


TO VISIT OUR PAST POSTS--SCROLL DOWN THE SIDE BAR. ALSO LINKS ARE FURTHER DOWN