Authenticity & Powder Horn Safety!!!

Discussion in 'Historically Accurate Equipment' started by Le Loup, Jan 14, 2019.

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  1. Jan 14, 2019 #1

    Le Loup

    Le Loup

    Le Loup

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    Please pay attention to this. In some constructions there is no right or wrong way, just so long as it works. But with gunpowder horns there is a RIGHT way & a WRONG way & doing it the wrong way is DANGEROUS!!!
    Keith.


    More Information on Powder Horn Safety on my Blog Here:
    https://woodsrunnersdiary.blogspot.com/2014/04/a-powder-horn-safety-test-in-belgium.html

    https://woodsrunnersdiary.blogspot.com/2014/07/more-info-on-making-powder-horns.html

    https://woodsrunnersdiary.blogspot.com/2018/12/making-powder-horn_31.html
     
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  2. Jan 16, 2019 #2

    RHensley

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    Good information. Back many years ago when I made my first flint lock My gunsmith who hunted with a flint lock told me I needed to get some 4F powder to prime with. I did. Now I've been using this same lb of powder for ever. I use 2-3 grains powder when I prime and I don't know how many grains of powder there is in a pound of powder but some day I'll run out and want buy any more. To be honest I'm tired of keeping up with 2-3 different sizes of powder. Thanks. Oh and I tried one of my rifles with 2F and I can't tell the difference. Thanks Roger
     
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  3. Jan 16, 2019 #3

    Black Hand

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  4. Jan 16, 2019 #4

    RHensley

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    I guess that's why I've been using the same lb of 4F for 30+ years.
     
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  5. Jan 21, 2019 #5

    Rifleman1776

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    I stopped watching a short way in. Two statements he made turned me off. An exploding powder horn is about as likely as your car gas tank blowing up under normal circumstances. It just won't happen. Don't sweat it. And, he said if it did happen the horn would "shatter". Nonsense, it would split and the pressure would come out that split. Don't know who that guy is but he is demonstrating ignorance.

    That's good. A lot of experienced shooters and some scientific types agree with you. Me? I like 4fg because I believe it is faster. Seems so to me. But that is a personal observation. Science tells me I'm wrong but my gut tells me I am right. And, my gut is never wrong. ;) Bottom line? Do wat ye like, do yer own thang.
     
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  6. Jan 21, 2019 #6

    RHensley

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    For most people we just don't know. But for some who have researched this subject and found documents that show this happened (even once is too many times) is worth my time watching. I know everyone will not agree with everything that anyone says. We all have our own opinion and lean towards that. I've never seen a car gas tank expload from someone smoking while filling it up but I've read where it happened. When it comes to safety I lean to what might happen whether I've seen it or not. I know that many years ago after shooting when I went to reload I dumped my powder charge down the barrel and it went off. I was glad the horn was no where near. Murphy's law comes to mind. All this reminds me of what I told my nephew years ago. When ever you get a chance go and talk to old folks. They didn't get old by being stupid.
     
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  7. Jan 21, 2019 #7

    RHensley

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    Now for the 4F powder. I'm cheap. I will use up all the 4F I have left but want buy any more. I probably work down to just one powder. 2F for everything. It'll work in 45-54 and all in between. just different amounts. each to his or her own. Have fun ya'll
     
  8. Jan 22, 2019 #8

    Le Loup

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    There have been three causes of exploding powder horns, one the user forgets to replace the spout plug, another is that after some use, gunpowder becomes impregnated into the spout plug & it has been known to act as a fuse when a spark has contacted the spout plug. Thirdly people loading a charge directly from the horn. Frankly I find your attitude irresponsible & mindless. If you don't give a damn about your own safety, then at least think of other people. Yes of course a powder horn will split in an explosion, & it is these pieces splitting away from the horn that cause a lot of the damage, to say nothing of the fact that the exploding gunpowder itself hanging against your body will do considerable damage.
    I would guess at your reply that you have a powder horn with a glued base plug, you may even have made it yourself. If this is the case, then it is in my opinion totally ridiculous to try & rubbish a fact just so can justify keeping & or having made a faulty powder horn. If it were just your safety on the line here I would not even bother to reply, there is nothing anyone can say to someone with your attitude that just won't listen, but there are others on this forum who do NOT deserve to be left in the dark or persuaded negatively by your comment to have their lives put at risk.
    I myself made horns with a glued base plug, but I had more sense than to keep using it after I was made aware of the dangers. One I gave to my sons to play with when they were youngsters, & the other & cut off the base plug & made a new one which I sealed with beeswax.
    Keith.
     
  9. Jan 22, 2019 #9

    Le Loup

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    [​IMG]
    Good post, totally agree. Your reply comment is also far more polite than mine.
    Regards, Keith.
     
  10. Jan 23, 2019 #10

    Rifleman1776

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    The circumstances you describe are anything but 'normal'. Stupidity can have serious consequences. I have attempted to make bombs from bp to get rid of critters in holes in the ground. Never once did the 'bomb' actually blow up. They all only went sorta "foof". There just was not enough confinement to create explosive pressures. Methinks a horn would react the same way.

    I like your guessing, that really helps. Actually, I have about 25 powder horns. I have never made a horn. These are all from various builders. Two (sets) were made by well known builders. All have very securely fastened base plugs. I still think the guy in the video is an ignorant fear monger.

    If you have been following my posts over the years or knew me, you would realize I am a bp/gun safety 'nut' to the point of being irritating, especially on a crowded range. I am far more safety minded than most. Come better weather, I might just try an experiment with a horn by plugging the spout and using a fuse. Got a feeling the horn will not blow up but just "foof" out the spout.
     
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  11. Jan 23, 2019 #11

    Black Hand

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    And I STRONGLY suspect you will be proven wrong in a rather spectacular and explosive way...
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2019
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  12. Jan 23, 2019 #12

    Pete G

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    The only mishap I ever witnesed was a horn igniting at the spout and whizzing around the user's neck like a firework. After the initial shock it turned out to be rather funny. We also banned any powder in horns during battle re-enactments; paper cartridges only.
     
  13. Jan 23, 2019 #13

    Le Loup

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    I have no idea how much gunpowder was in this horn, but I thought the experiment a good one & it does show that the base plug works as a pressure relief valve.
    Keith.
     
  14. Jan 24, 2019 #14

    waarp8nt

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    Thank you for posting these videos! I have only made a a couple of horns and while I never used glue, I have used too many fasteners. This will be something easily avoided with future projects.
     
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  15. Jan 24, 2019 #15

    Le Loup

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    Your comment is very much appreciated, thank you.
    Regards, Keith.
     
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  16. Jan 25, 2019 #16

    Rifleman1776

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    LL, while an interesting experiment, I don't believe any conclusions can be reached from that one test. The nails holding the base plug split through the horn. I didn't hear an explosion, just a sorta "foof". No shattering.
     
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  17. Jan 25, 2019 #17

    tenngun

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    Got my first horn in ‘74, always treated it with respect. That was near 45 years ago. I’ve yet to blow up a horn. I don’t wear it near a camp fire, I don’t load from a horn, I take it off when I have a smoke. I just don’t think it will be in my worry list.
     
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  18. Jan 25, 2019 #18

    Le Loup

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    I think you are having a lend of me, have you never fired a blank charge? What did it sound like? The whole point of this experiment was to show that a base plug that was NOT glued would release the pressure, & that is exactly what it did!!! Your witch hunt is not adding to anyone's education or safety, & for myself it is not appreciated. You have a right to believe whatever you want to believe, & you have the right to risk your OWN life. But I wish you would stop trying to convince others to follow your way of thinking. You want to prove me wrong? Explode one of your glued base plug horns whilst you are wearing it!
    What sort of person given the choice of making something safer would ignore the advice when there is nothing to lose & much to gain? ask yourself that.
    As for me, I have had enough of this conversation, you can do whatever you like.
    Keith.
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2019
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  19. Mar 15, 2019 at 1:16 PM #19

    mingo

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    Might not have exploded, but there is a lot of flame in that foof.
    Rearrange your face or a body part pretty quick.
    I saw some fatal accidents in the military from guys being less conscious than they should.
    A couple involved innocent bystanders.
    This powderhorn discussion was worn out years ago, on this forum as I recall.
     
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  20. Mar 16, 2019 at 1:49 PM #20

    Rifleman1776

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    Mingo, I did say I would do a test. We actually had a couple days without rain. [and my ark was almost finished :) ] We have a large boulder in the back yard. I'll shoot off the horn behind that. I am super safety conscious. Be a couple days before I get to it.
    Frank
     
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