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Login Name Post: Matchlock & Primitive Gonne Safety Practices        (Topic#306183)
Cpl. Ashencheeks 
40 Cal.
Posts: 297
Cpl. Ashencheeks
01-08-18 12:54 PM - Post#1662071    


First off, I would say common sense goes a long way to start, but some of things I have seen people do in youtube videos give me reason to pause to the point of fright.

Military drill practices of the past do not always seem safe, and these practices were developed in combat conditions which are not safe in the first place.

Of some violations the solutions can be pretty obvious.

Not blowing on a slow match cord over an open pan cover would be one. In the case of handgonnes using a linstock or serpentine match holder probably might provide some small amount of additional safety.

I have seen some people move a burning matchcord directly over a source of powder, another reason to stay way back from certain users of these old style arms.

Is there any set or list of general safety rules that could make using these arms far more safe in these modern times aside from the older military drills?

I have seen some people use shorter lengths of match cords which seems like a good start for safer matchlock and gonne use.

Braided cord over twisted cord also might make matchlocks and hadgonnes a little safer.

Snuffer finials or a small bottle filled with water like a rose stem vial for extinguishing cord and a cord clip or rest on fork rests might also provide additional safety.

If any other suggestions or lists for extra safety measures can be thought of concerning safer use of cord ignited weapons please give some thought to listing them in any replies to this post.

Thank you for taking the time to read this and additional thanks if there are any replies.

 
Flint62Smoothie 
50 Cal.
Posts: 1423
Flint62Smoothie
01-08-18 02:38 PM - Post#1662096    

    In response to Cpl. Ashencheeks

Match Care - Range: Not period correct at all, but I made an alligator-type clamp and put it at the far right front corner of my shooting bench (am left-handed) to ‘store’ the lit match well away fromwhere I load.

I do extinguish it during cease fires or if/when anyone else ventures down range ... me included. For fun - or to impress others - I’ll re-light it using flint/steel/charcloth, but keep a lighter handy otherwise, haha!

Match Care - Shoots or Woodwalk: A few of us purchased original British Grenardier ‘match cases’, that look like a brass tube about 6” long, that is perforated to keep the match placed internally lit. It is worn on the belt on the other side of any powder measure, pulverin and/or apostles (individual powder measure).

Match Care - Extinguishing: I use an old round tin, like
used on those gel-lit food warming trays, but this one has a screw-on air tight lid. I extinguish the match by rolling off the head against concrete or rock, then place it in the tin. Works great!

Other: I perfer braided match, not twisted lengths, but that’s me. Fuse cord can help whilst shooting hand gonnes.

For range use I do use shorter lengths of match cord and pieces only a few inches long for hand gonnes use from linstocks.

Yes, proper & safe match care, like blowing on it to keep a conditioned/lit head needs particular care, but to me ... much of it is common sense, which does seem to be a rare commodity in this era of smart phones ... (see the connection?)


All my MZLs will shoot into a ragged ~1/2" hole ALL DAY LONG... it's just the 2nd & 3rd shots that open the group!


Edited by Flint62Smoothie on 01-08-18 02:42 PM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

 
kruzer1 
40 Cal.
Posts: 172
kruzer1
01-08-18 08:02 PM - Post#1662192    

    In response to Flint62Smoothie

This is an interesting thread.

I am hunting with the matchlock that I built last fall. Hunting with a matchlock brings additional logistics and I would appreciate, along with range tips, anything for that as well?

One thing I discovered last night was that I had failed to account for a strong stiff wind accelerating my match cords burn rate. I had to leave the field half hour early (right when the deer started moving). Always bring spare matchcord

 
Cpl. Ashencheeks 
40 Cal.
Posts: 297
Cpl. Ashencheeks
01-09-18 07:27 PM - Post#1662408    

    In response to kruzer1

I think the match safe Flint62Smoothie mentions is very much like this one here



There are other options like it like a Japanese match safe that looks like a tin drum lunch box with air holes to keep a coil of match cord dry in various conditions it also had a cylindrical stem tube protruding from it's round side with an exit hole on the side of the stem for the burning end of a slow match cord to go through.

To keep strong wind off the match you might consider a vented piece of metal similar to those found on WWI trench art lighters or the wind shield on zippo lighters.

 
Flint62Smoothie 
50 Cal.
Posts: 1423
Flint62Smoothie
01-12-18 07:52 AM - Post#1662952    

    In response to Cpl. Ashencheeks

Another tip:

Typically on a matchlock, you load the charge, prime and close that pan cover after priming and then use your breath to blow off any loose priming powdah from around the pan area (for safety reasons). Insert the matchcord into the serpentine and position it as needed to drop the match into the center of the pan, and tighten it in place.

Then blow ACROSS the barrel (again for safety reasons), but aiming your breath at the head of the lit matchcord to ensure it has a nice ashless tip. Like starting a fire with flint, steel & charcloth, I find a low sustained breath gives the best results.

Then shoulder the arm, open the pan safety cover ... and make the shot.
All my MZLs will shoot into a ragged ~1/2" hole ALL DAY LONG... it's just the 2nd & 3rd shots that open the group!


 
Flint62Smoothie 
50 Cal.
Posts: 1423
Flint62Smoothie
01-12-18 07:56 AM - Post#1662953    

    In response to Cpl. Ashencheeks

  • Cpl. Ashencheeks Said:
I think the match safe Flint62Smoothie mentions is very much like this one here.


Most of us use an 18th century British ‘Grenadier’s slow match case’ of perforated/ventilated brass, or something similar but homemade. Yes, we realize it is dayed hundreds of years later ... but for safety, well ... it certainly serves the purpose well.

This is a nice one here, by G. Gedney Godwin:
http://gggodwin-com.3dcartstores.com/Grenadier-Slow-Match-Ca...
All my MZLs will shoot into a ragged ~1/2" hole ALL DAY LONG... it's just the 2nd & 3rd shots that open the group!


 
trettie 
32 Cal.
Posts: 36
01-14-18 08:28 PM - Post#1663418    

    In response to Cpl. Ashencheeks

Match control. I’ve seen too many matchlock shooters let one end flop about, or fail to recover a match end that gets blown out of the serpentine. Always having the match under your control goes a long way in assuring that fire and powder don’t come together before you intend them to.

 
Canute 
40 Cal.
Posts: 215
01-14-18 08:56 PM - Post#1663427    

    In response to trettie

The biggest danger with a matchlock on the range is some guy coming up to me and saying something like "Hey, is that a matchlock? Let me pepper you with rapid fire questions while you are trying to load and fire!" The only times I have screwed up have been in that kind of situation.

I made myself a match case out of a piece of 1-1/2" copper pipe and a couple of end caps. It has air holes on the bottom and one side and a match hole in the top. It hangs on a cord on my left hip, opposite of my powder bottles.

With the match in the case my loading sequence is:

-Plug the vent with a copper pick
-Load
-Remove pick
-Prime
-Close the pan
-Tip the gun sideways and blow off excess powder
-Pull out the match and catch it between the pinkie and ring finger of my left hand, about 8-10" sticking out*, holding near the end with my thumb and forefinger
-Blow on the match
-Place it in the serpentine
-Try the match (tip the serpentine down a little to see that the tip of the match hits the center of the pan)
-Place the first finger of my right hand along/over the pan-cover/barrel line and blow on the match again
-Shoulder
-Open pan
-Aim and fire
-Replace match in case

*Your inches may vary, depending on where you place your left hand on the forearm.

(I blame this procedure, switching from flint to match, rather than the age of my knee cartilage, for the increase in my primitive biathlon times.)

Holding the match between the pinkie and ring is important so as to prevent the match from flailing around after firing. I either wrap the spare match around my left forearm or figure eight around the straps of my pouch, hung on the left.

For snuffing the match I find that tucking the end about 6" down the barrel does the job.

 
trettie 
32 Cal.
Posts: 36
01-16-18 12:00 PM - Post#1663755    

    In response to Canute

Hmm, I’ve never encountered safety concerns using the military manual of arms, especially when firing in ranks. I do think it’s generally safer to have your charges premeasured rather than measuring from a flask.

 
Teleoceras 
45 Cal.
Posts: 765
Teleoceras
01-16-18 09:24 PM - Post#1663918    

    In response to Cpl. Ashencheeks

Cpl. Ashencheeks:

While at the range for safety's sake, I just cut enough slowmatch for one shot. Then I reload and light another. This way if people ask me questions (which they always do), I can do it without a burning matchcord being too close.

Slowmatch Forever!
Teleoceras

 
tc1969 
32 Cal.
Posts: 25
02-01-18 03:16 PM - Post#1667126    

    In response to Teleoceras

Here are two match cord safes that I made from a couple of old fireplace wood match holders. The idea was to make a match cord safe that could : Be worn on the hip, slow the burn rate thus preserving the cord longer ,. Accommodate different lengths of match cord, be easy to insert and remove the lit cord by by feel,important for hunting. and provide protection from the weather. The darker one has a mesh grate in the bottom preventing the lit end from touching the bottom. The holes around the tops and bottom supply air and venting. The 2nd version has dragons heads that that breathe and vent the smoke. I hope to try these hunting. At the range they go on the table top. Lids have rare earth magnets to keep em closed. All brass and copper construction.

 
tc1969 
32 Cal.
Posts: 25
02-01-18 03:20 PM - Post#1667127    

    In response to tc1969

[image]http://[/image]

 
tc1969 
32 Cal.
Posts: 25
02-01-18 03:22 PM - Post#1667128    

    In response to tc1969

[image]http://[/image]

 
tc1969 
32 Cal.
Posts: 25
02-01-18 03:23 PM - Post#1667129    

    In response to tc1969

[image]http://[/image]

 
tc1969 
32 Cal.
Posts: 25
02-01-18 03:25 PM - Post#1667130    

    In response to tc1969

[image]http://[/image]

 
tc1969 
32 Cal.
Posts: 25
02-01-18 03:26 PM - Post#1667131    

    In response to tc1969

[image]http://[/image]

 
tc1969 
32 Cal.
Posts: 25
02-01-18 04:49 PM - Post#1667140    

    In response to tc1969

The lit end goes into the smaller half while the rest goes in to the larger compartment. A sheet of brass with a v cut in the top separates the two sides and the match is pressed into the v. The brass wall keeps the lit side separate from the longer unlit side.

 
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