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"A Dinosaur-Proof Fort for Victorians or Moderns?" Topic

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Cacique Caribe13 Jun 2006 8:39 a.m. PST

For later this year . . .

I am thinking of long pointed wooden stakes all around (porcupine-like) a palisade enclosure, either on a steep hill or surrounded by a deep moat.

Any other suggestions for my "Jurassic Fort"?


teboj1713 Jun 2006 8:46 a.m. PST

I was thinking of an electric fence, but that might be to scientific. How bout a Steam Fence. The "rails" are streams of hot Steam. Or a moat filled with even bigger dinasours. Ha ha.
High concrete/stone walls.

Cacique Caribe13 Jun 2006 8:48 a.m. PST

I know there must be better pictures than this somewhere . . .



rmaker13 Jun 2006 9:23 a.m. PST

The porcupine-like stakes ARE a palisade. The solid wall of vertical logs is a stockade.

Broadsword13 Jun 2006 9:35 a.m. PST

Cacique Caribe – Not to be cheeky, but how do you intend to deal with flying dinosaurs?

Al |

Lord Hypnogogue13 Jun 2006 9:37 a.m. PST

Steam-powered repeating ballista?

Rattrap113 Jun 2006 9:41 a.m. PST

Broadsword wrote: Cacique Caribe Not to be cheeky, but how do you intend to deal with flying dinosaurs?

A BIG net over the whole thing.


Andrew Walters13 Jun 2006 9:43 a.m. PST

High walls smooth enough to disallow claw-based climbing would do it, but they wouldn't be very interesting.

Some kind of bunker, if you have concrete.

A ditch would work, depending on the dinosaur.

A lot depends on which dinosaurs you need to keep out, and what kind of resources (technology, prep time) you have. Want to narrow it down for us?


artslave13 Jun 2006 10:12 a.m. PST

Another approach would be careful collection of Spinasaurus urine poured around the "fort". I could just picture the players drawing straws for who gets to go collect the stuff. For my Suarian Adventures I use a combo of pallisaded redoupts and stockade walls that I have built for AWI/F&I forts. I also have in mind to do the tree house type fort from "Lost World". The concrete bunker would be just right for an idea I've had for "Cretaceous Park", done like a modern "Survivor" thriller show with no holds bared. "Eat or be eaten: Only one shall emerge as the winner!" "Many fly in, but only one can come out of Cretaceous Park".

Cacique Caribe13 Jun 2006 10:39 a.m. PST

I guess I could end up building two different stages of the same structure: one hastily built, as a temporary camp or while a more permanent and secure one is completed.

If not, then, just the temporary camp.


Cacique Caribe13 Jun 2006 10:55 a.m. PST

Rich: I LOVE the idea of the net!

Rmaker: "The porcupine-like stakes ARE a palisade. The solid wall of vertical logs is a stockade." Then, is this diagonal one a "palistockade" then? :)


cloudcaptain13 Jun 2006 12:34 p.m. PST

I have to agree that the concrete bunker idea sounds best. It would be relatively cool in hot environs. Make sure there are are below ground tunnels linking say…5 bunkers. 4 form the cardinal points on a compass, one in the center. Dig a trench, fill with stone or concrete and fill with oil. it will burn for quite awhile before needing to be replaced. Save that one for emergencies. You can let Dinos in and start the fires, wiping them out a little at a time, etc.

Broadsword13 Jun 2006 12:57 p.m. PST

cloudcaptain – all you need are a few harpoon cannons to finish the trapped dinosaurs off. Just keep telling yourself it tastes just like chicken.

Al |

nemopholist13 Jun 2006 1:14 p.m. PST

Why not just have a concrete covered fort like the old hemespherical Maginot line forts. Make sure the embrasures taper up and down to the mouth of the cannon, and about 10 feet so the dino has to cram his head in there to get at the meat. A small steel trap door above and about six feet in front of the gun allows the rancid goat carcass to be dropped in front of the muzzle of the loaded 11" Dahlgren shell gun. When the T-Rex comes along to this "drive up window" to pick up a quick McT burger one on the way home, he'll get a "special side order" like he never dreamed of.

The beauty is they'll enough shredded T-rex (or raptor or Allosaurus left to bait the trap again. Just reload the gun.

Mmmmm… T-Rex, tastes like chicken!

Murvihill13 Jun 2006 2:04 p.m. PST

Build a low wall (3-4' high) behind which your humans can cower with polearms. above it build a flat roof that overhangs the wall by a good 10'. The roof needs to be sufficiently strong that the dinos can't crush it (tall order, but with primordial forests available, why not?). Then the inhabitants can hold off the man-sized and smaller dinosaurs with the wall, while the bigger dinosaurs can only get dinner by bending over and presenting their most sensitive parts to the pikes of the defenders ("Right, men stab at the eyes, nose, gums and tongue. Try to stay away from the teeth!"). If they have cannon or rifles, all the better.

Cacique Caribe13 Jun 2006 5:49 p.m. PST

Since the largest predatory dinosaurs were, at the most, 20-25 feet tall, I guess the pointed stakes will probably work for a temporary fort.

I do like the idea of the bunkers for modern explorers with a permanent site.



Cacique Caribe13 Jun 2006 5:53 p.m. PST

I meant to add these links:



cloudcaptain13 Jun 2006 6:32 p.m. PST

Also, I think piano wire would do wonders.

Zephyr113 Jun 2006 8:23 p.m. PST

You just need a bigger (and friendly, to your side) carnivorous dinosaur, with a leash long enough to reach to the perimeter of your camp. Your (friendly) dinosaur will thus defend it's "territory" against all invaders…. :)

rddfxx14 Jun 2006 5:38 a.m. PST

I like the King Kong defense (original better than the remakes). Tall walls, heavy gate, and best of all, a steady diet of sacrificial blondes. That Fay Wray touch!

Cacique Caribe14 Jun 2006 6:11 a.m. PST

"I like the King Kong defense (original better than the remakes). Tall walls, heavy gate, and best of all, a steady diet of sacrificial blondes . . . "

The blondes is the easy part!!!

However, I was hoping to make a much smaller enclosure for 28mm. Like something that a crew of 30-50 could erect in a short time, while better defenses were built.


rddfxx14 Jun 2006 7:14 a.m. PST

Then again, your average meat eating dinosaur may lack the innocence of a love-struck ape. The charm of the Fay Wray defense is we eventually get her back from the ape. Perish the thought a dino may actually consume her! Not cricket Old Boy, it just ISN'T done.

Patrick FL16 Jun 2006 6:19 p.m. PST

Of course, you don't want the stockade to be TOO good, else where's the fun? How about thorn bushes?

Cacique Caribe19 Jun 2006 9:39 p.m. PST

I like this idea, even though I would probably erect it over land:

TMP link


Dewbakuk21 Jun 2006 4:13 a.m. PST

I agree, I'm wondering if I can justify making a full one or just a couple of sections.

You could always build it in a swampy bit?

Cacique Caribe14 Jan 2008 12:28 a.m. PST

Check this out:



Personal logo Doms Decals Sponsoring Member of TMP14 Jan 2008 3:57 a.m. PST

Would it be unhelpful if I suggested building the fort several million years after the dinosaurs died out as a highly effective means of defence…? Yeah, thought so….

Robin Bobcat14 Jan 2008 7:03 a.m. PST

I like the stockade and pallisade idea, myself. It makes the most 'sense', especially as something constructed without available heavy duty woodworking, concrete, or metalworking equipment on hand. Just need a bunch of axes and saws for the logs, and some shovels for setting it up. You might also want a trench around it as well, piling the dirt up to form the base of the walls. Might be harder to model, of course.

Smokey Roan14 Jan 2008 7:15 a.m. PST

Flying Dinosaurs? Primitive animal skin helium ballons (like when the Cave Boy (Kurt Russell)found the helium deposit on Gilligans' Island) with vine tethers (like WWII anti dive bomber ballons)

Smokey Roan14 Jan 2008 7:18 a.m. PST

Oh, and some rolling/falling rock traps and boom cranes with hooks/nets.

Victorians would be fully aware of all medievel defensive contraptions, eh?.

Skrapwelder14 Jan 2008 8:54 a.m. PST

On the bottom of this page is a shot of something I started after being inspired by the Red Sands forts.


RabidFox14 Jan 2008 10:45 a.m. PST

I do not have any ideas beyond what is presented already.
I just want to thank CC for coming up with an interesting topic.

It would be great CC, if you could organize all these super ideas into a file that folks could download along with anything else you have on the subject.

Cacique Caribe14 Jan 2008 12:53 p.m. PST

"It would be great CC, if you could organize all these super ideas into a file that folks could download . . ."

Other than our Cave Wars Group and TMP, I cannot think of anyother "depositories" for these links and ideas.

Any suggestions on that?


Cacique Caribe14 Jan 2008 1:03 p.m. PST

Guys, look at the description I found for the Caspak/Caprona "Fort Dinosaur" in Burroughs' "Land That Time Forgot".


"The following morning we commenced work upon our camp, Bradley, Olson, von Schoenvorts, Miss La Rue, and I having sat up half the night discussing the matter and drawing plans. We set the men at work felling trees, selecting for the purpose jarrah, a hard, weather-resisting timber which grew in profusion near by. Half the men labored while the other half stood guard, alternating each hour with an hour off at noon. Olson directed this work. Bradley, von Schoenvorts and I, with Miss La Rue's help, staked out the various buildings and the outer wall. When the day was done, we had quite an array of logs nicely notched and ready for our building operations on the morrow, and we were all tired, for after the buildings had been staked out we all fell in and helped with the logging--all but von Schoenvorts. He, being a Prussian and a gentleman, couldn't stoop to such menial labor in the presence of his men, and I didn't see fit to ask it of him, as the work was purely voluntary upon our part . . .

The following morning we started building operations in earnest, and things progressed finely. The Neanderthal man was something of a care, for we had to keep him in irons all the time, and he was mighty savage when approached; but after a time he became more docile, and then we tried to discover if he had a language. Lys spent a great deal of time talking to him and trying to draw him out; but for a long while she was unsuccessful. It took us three weeks to build all the houses, which we constructed close by a cold spring some two miles from the harbor.

We changed our plans a trifle when it came to building the palisade, for we found a rotted cliff near by where we could get all the flat building-stone we needed, and so we constructed a stone wall entirely around the buildings. It was in the form of a square, with bastions and towers at each corner which would permit an enfilading fire along any side of the fort, and was about one hundred and thirty-five feet square on the outside, with walls three feet thick at the bottom and about a foot and a half wide at the top, and fifteen feet high. It took a long time to build that wall, and we all turned in and helped except von Schoenvorts, who, by the way, had not spoken to me except in the line of official business since our encounter--a condition of armed neutrality which suited me to a T. We have just finished it, the last touches being put on today . . ."

J Womack 9414 Jan 2008 1:41 p.m. PST

Oh, for the logs, I saw something at Garden Ridge on Saturday night that might be perfect for quick and dirty log palisade/stockade making.

They were wooden sticks for making candy apples. nice point, thicker than bamboo skewers, and about four inches in length (roughly 10cm). Should have bought some, but I may go back and get them now…

And yes, my old married fart butt was shopping at Garden Ridge at 8:00 on a Saturday night. Whee the wild and crazy married life!

Cacique Caribe20 Jan 2008 7:43 p.m. PST

Fantastic! I'll have to check that out.


Andy ONeill22 Jan 2008 6:07 a.m. PST

I made a stockade for my "darkest africa" games a while back.
The logs are striaght twigs cut from the plum tree in my back yard.
These "stakes" I cut to size with a pair of secateur and sharpened with a stanley knife.

The stakes are attached to an earthen rampart I made with corrugated cardboard and acrylic frame sealant.
To get the round shape a I marked it out using a piece of string and 2 pencils to improbvise a big compass.
That marked out the walkway curves and then I cut card strips, bent them round againsty the walkways and cut to length.
The walkways I textured by daubing wuith sealent and presing a blade in repeatedly in radius to suggest some sort of sticks kind of flooring.
I built the thing one sunday morning for a game that afternoon.

Thurlac22 Jan 2008 3:21 p.m. PST

I always thought of the ambas of Ethiopia like Magdala: preposterous mountaintop forts perched precariously on summits.

Any dinosaur trying to get up there would get bored after a while or die of overexertion or fall off like a Ray Harryhausen effect.

From a practical point of view, against sauropods, I'd suggest a simple field of caltrops will do the trick.

For the larger carnosaurs a narrow bridge or a steep staircase with steps narrower than the length of the foot would do nicely (the dalek defence).

For those pesky little intelligent dinosaurs, I'd suggest a stout door.

28mmMan22 Jan 2008 6:08 p.m. PST

Proof is an interesting and quite often exagerated in evidence…water proof watches, fire proof materials, etc.

Resistant or deterant is a bit better to chew on.

With the intent to keep the big lizards away look to classic siege defences…trenches, draw/swing bridges, series of low lying walls, and fire is always welcome. Spikes are most likely useful but there are issues of suspected/assumed reaction time to stimulus…pain, so I am not sure a pain related deterant would succeed on its own merits.

But for cool looks on a table top…berms, rock walls, trenches (these could provide escape paths for those caught out and about when the attacks begin…to tunnels), pits and/or pit falls, spiked poles, pitch pots (sooty smoke would surely throw off scent), and perhaps mobile distractors like small herds of goats/sheep/slaves (mooohahahha…) released from key points outside the compound via those forementioned trenches/tunnels.

It would make a great image on a table that is for sure.

SBminisguy22 Jan 2008 7:34 p.m. PST

There might be some ideas in SM Stirling's "Sky People" scifi novel. Interesting premise that shifts the theme of Venus as dinosaur-swamp out of VSF and Pulp 1930s and into the Cold War period ca. 1988. Astronauts, Dinosaurs and Cavemen with AK-47s…what's not to like???


J Womack 9422 Jan 2008 9:09 p.m. PST

GamerX: I liked that novel a lot, actually.

Thurlac: The daleks have defeated your defense system. They fly now. Isn't there something basically WRONG with that?

I suggest a large bore rifle, plenty of ammunition, and a long field of fire. And a bayonet, with a bit of guts behind it. (Thank you, Colour Sergeant Bourne!)

Thurlac23 Jan 2008 1:35 p.m. PST

Yeah, flying daleks really suck.
Now where's the fun in that?

Murvihill25 Jan 2008 2:25 p.m. PST

I keep picturing a huge stone roof (say 4 feet thick) overhanging narrow (6") but wide (10 foot) windows and automatic shotguns to kill the little beggers that can fit in the gap.

Barmy Flutterz26 Jan 2008 12:54 a.m. PST

A lot of these ideas might double as being useful for dealing with mothers in law as well.

Cacique Caribe19 Jul 2008 5:35 p.m. PST

Check out this photo:



chaos0xomega19 Jul 2008 9:24 p.m. PST

Like this:

MrDodo21 Jul 2008 8:12 a.m. PST

I agree with the concept of the place being on sturdy Victorian posts if it is a permenant settlement. Are you familiar with the first (now sadly burned down) Brighton Peer? I have previously designed Victorian bases using the same architecture, with winches, pens for dinosaurs below (with lowable Howdawas etc), and large arberitums like the hothouses in Kew. When necessary, redcoats man gattlings etc along the surrounding balconies. Elegant yet sturdy, don't che know.

Cacique Caribe21 Jul 2008 2:50 p.m. PST


My man, I think you have the right idea! Any inspiring photos?

Thanks so much.


Sargonarhes21 Jul 2008 4:10 p.m. PST

Most of you seem to be thinking more for the Victorian defensive systems. It probably would have to have more involved as they don't have access to what a modern fort would have.

A modern anti-dino fort would have high strength steel fence, electrified of course. Use some razor wire around that and on top the fence to catch any jumpers. The guard positions would have a heavy machine guns for hitting anything big enough to push through the fence, and would be more of a cage to keep the flyers at bay. Most of the fort would be in a dug in position.

Cacique Caribe21 Jul 2008 6:50 p.m. PST

Wouldn't a dug-in position be unable to withstand the weight of most animals?

WHAT IF the Victorians/Moderns had to build the fort using only what the land had to offer?

In other words, they were not expecting to encounter dinosaurs when they went into the jungle and, therefore, did not bring all the heavy gear and equipment.

Could the shape/design itself make up for the lack of modern materials?

As a network of tree houses/platforms, perhaps? As a stockade atop a very steep hill or rock? Other ideas?


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