Quantcast

Hello Cannoneers, I'm Bill and would like to show my noise maker's off

Help Support Muzzle Loading Forum:

Bill Rowe

36 Cl.
Joined
Jan 12, 2021
Messages
67
Reaction score
107
Location
Michigan
Naval brass 1/2 scale 2'' bore , carriage made from 4x4 discarded pallet oak from work, steel wheels from good pal Vince's scrap yard. WARNING never fire in enclosed area. Window cost is staggering.

Civil war steel Napoleon on carriage 1/2'' bore, these were imported in the 1970's from Spain and proof marked, even though their are no markings I can find. Bought off Craig's list , it was double loaded when I found it.

Naval Captains deck cannon, same makers of the 1/2 scale, but down to 1/4 size with a 1'' bore. I took 2 months of my work breaks, to polish off the casting skin down to clean brass on the barrel . I CNC milled out a chunk brass plate of 3/4'' thick stock, to make cradle for the barrel and U shaped it on a make shift die I made in a 80 ton hydraulic press. I made all the little extra's like bore hole cap, touch hole cover. swivel adjuster, and solid brass stand. This was the shops Christmas present for my boss. He had so admired mine over the years that he wanted one for himself. He bought the barrel, that I found at a flea market for couple hundred bucks, probably had closer to another 300$ in just the other brass for the cradle and stand and accessories. I did the barrel finishing on my nickel, as it was a present, and I would not have been able to finish it in time for Christmas with out the other tool makers assistance , Shout out to Brad and Sean. I have started one for my self, and have 3 slow progress years into it, I have polished and finished the barrel, and down to the finish work on the cradle and then U shape it, and make the stand. I hope to return to work after this virus has subsided and finish it.
 

Attachments

Bill Rowe

36 Cl.
Joined
Jan 12, 2021
Messages
67
Reaction score
107
Location
Michigan
Absolutely fantastic. I love the first one with the 4 wheels. I should imagine it travels when fired. True magic.
Yes , just like in the movies, I have never shot a ball out of it, but the times I did with rag and wad, it bucked back. I can see why they had rope drags to slow it down, and keep it in place on a rocking ocean. Can imagine being a barefoot pirate and have one of these full size babies roll over your Bunyan. Let alone drop a cannon ball on your toe.
 

Davey Boy

40 Cal
Joined
Oct 27, 2020
Messages
186
Reaction score
67
Location
Florida Panhandle
I have put an inch and a half lead ball out of sight over the open water in the Gulf of Maine using a half cup of black powder (3FFF perhaps).

With same cannon at the range, just the barrel backed against a telephone pole in the ground that supported bench rest roof, the full diameter pressed into the pole perhaps 3/16" .

Same cannon with a 2 liter full of water soda bottle placed about an inch in front of the cannon. The water went everywhere and I had to search the area to even find a dime sized piece of that Google's plastic.

Imagine a loading failure with any body part exposed to just a blank load, it would be terrifying.

I learned respect from these kinds of tests.

In my 62 cal foot long caliber loaded heavy and sealed right with flour pack, the recoil could break bones if you got it the way.

Mounting cannon of 1\2" to 1" to the deck of a boat for racing signal resulted in the cannon ripping the decking right of the sailboat and the cannon going overboard. Obviously the powder charge in a post mounted deck cannon would need a light load or the levering action would rip it apart.
 

Davey Boy

40 Cal
Joined
Oct 27, 2020
Messages
186
Reaction score
67
Location
Florida Panhandle
And if anyone can tell me how to eradicate the auto correct feature of a Fire tablet so it doesn't create words from bottle to google, I may put this in front of my next cannon shoot.
 

Davey Boy

40 Cal
Joined
Oct 27, 2020
Messages
186
Reaction score
67
Location
Florida Panhandle
At auction from a gunsmith's estate, I got a small brass or bronze cannon casting along with a box of brass does of various sizes.

Could make some nice cannon replica models with it.
 

Bill Rowe

36 Cl.
Joined
Jan 12, 2021
Messages
67
Reaction score
107
Location
Michigan
Yes lot's of power , and recoil percussion. I shot my 2'' navy pictured between my house and pole barn, 4th of July and I was a hooting and a hollering, I had at that time in my house many stained glass windows. Most leaning into the Anderson frames. I fired it off about three times before I made a casual trip into the house for another cold beer , and to my dismay I had shards of glass all though out where my stained windows had once stood. I now fire in a open field. What's a fire tablet ?
 

Davey Boy

40 Cal
Joined
Oct 27, 2020
Messages
186
Reaction score
67
Location
Florida Panhandle
A Fire tablet by Amazon is like a smartphone without phone.

I use it at work to watch movies.

Connect to internet and do email. I like the 5x8 size.

When touch typing the screen for messages it auto suggests words.

So type a word in a sentence and it will stick in words you didn't type.

When reading messages in the forums you will see words that make no sense, and tablets are famous to do it.
 

Davey Boy

40 Cal
Joined
Oct 27, 2020
Messages
186
Reaction score
67
Location
Florida Panhandle
We have several stained glass windows my wife bought from old homes in Europe. I built new wood frames for them and sandwiched the glass using plexiglass to protect them.

they are each unique and enjoyable.

Getting back to cannons, I love the low frequency pressure wave from a cannon.

The cannons in the fort in Bucksport Maine were never fired in war. They loaded one up once and fired it and it broke house Windows up and down the Penobscot River.

That would be fun
 

Bill Rowe

36 Cl.
Joined
Jan 12, 2021
Messages
67
Reaction score
107
Location
Michigan
We have several stained glass windows my wife bought from old homes in Europe. I built new wood frames for them and sandwiched the glass using plexiglass to protect them.

they are each unique and enjoyable.

Getting back to cannons, I love the low frequency pressure wave from a cannon.

The cannons in the fort in Bucksport Maine were never fired in war. They loaded one up once and fired it and it broke house Windows up and down the Penobscot River.

That would be fun
Thank you Dave, I did not know. I just got a cell phone a little while back from my boy on his extra phones deal. Hate it. I have immense trouble navigating with it, as Buttons are to dam small for my fat old fingers, and I just do not care to be tethered. I gave up on electronics back in the 70's when the VCR instruction book was as thick as a bible. Wife handles all as a computer whiz for her work.
.
 

Davey Boy

40 Cal
Joined
Oct 27, 2020
Messages
186
Reaction score
67
Location
Florida Panhandle
I understand your grief with phones, I have one and use a stylus to select instead of my finger. Get a card of ten stylus, they are different colors, look like a pen except instead of a writing point at the end, they have an eraser looking rubber ball. Cheap too. Plant one everywhere.

I have all the people I want to talk to in my contacts list. In settings, select the part that says block all calls not in my contact list. Ask your wife to set it up that way and do the same for texting. It will make your phone more pleasant to use.


For cannon fuse I have always used 5/32 waterproof in red or green. The cheap stuff when folded until the outer layer cracks will sometimes sputter and fail. I have had a lit fuse sputter and go out. Now that's dangerous.

I learned that a good fuse when too tight when placed, it doesn't get enough oxygen to burn and it will go out. So pitch that fuse and try another. The coating isn't always smooth and of same diameter throughout its length.

I always illuminate the inside of a cleaned and dried bore when placing a fuse to make sure it comes smoothly all the way inside the bore.

If I get a no fire I keep the animals and people well clear for twenty minutes or more.

I never allow animals anywhere near a cannon before loading to when ready to fire.

I wear hearing protection and do not allow anyone near the cannon that could suffer hearing damage.

For a no fire and blank load, I run water into the bore to flush it completely clean.

If I get the cannon out and if my safety speech isn't listened to, I put the cannon away and I am done.
 

Bill Rowe

36 Cl.
Joined
Jan 12, 2021
Messages
67
Reaction score
107
Location
Michigan
I understand your grief with phones, I have one and use a stylus to select instead of my finger. Get a card of ten stylus, they are different colors, look like a pen except instead of a writing point at the end, they have an eraser looking rubber ball. Cheap too. Plant one everywhere.

I have all the people I want to talk to in my contacts list. In settings, select the part that says block all calls not in my contact list. Ask your wife to set it up that way and do the same for texting. It will make your phone more pleasant to use.


For cannon fuse I have always used 5/32 waterproof in red or green. The cheap stuff when folded until the outer layer cracks will sometimes sputter and fail. I have had a lit fuse sputter and go out. Now that's dangerous.

I learned that a good fuse when too tight when placed, it doesn't get enough oxygen to burn and it will go out. So pitch that fuse and try another. The coating isn't always smooth and of same diameter throughout its length.

I always illuminate the inside of a cleaned and dried bore when placing a fuse to make sure it comes smoothly all the way inside the bore.

If I get a no fire I keep the animals and people well clear for twenty minutes or more.

I never allow animals anywhere near a cannon before loading to when ready to fire.

I wear hearing protection and do not allow anyone near the cannon that could suffer hearing damage.

For a no fire and blank load, I run water into the bore to flush it completely clean.

If I get the cannon out and if my safety speech isn't listened to, I put the cannon away and I am done.
Is your touch hole 5/32'' ? I put in a 1/8'' hole on the big cannon. The guy would sell you the piece , you paid extra to his buddy to have it bored, and they refused for liability reasons to put in a touch hole. So I drill on a Bridgeport the 1/8'' hole in on a tapper to hit right into the drill point at the very end. I have used 1/8'' fuse, but just like you said I have choked out the flame some times. I now prime with 4f, and have made a linstock .
 

Davey Boy

40 Cal
Joined
Oct 27, 2020
Messages
186
Reaction score
67
Location
Florida Panhandle
Bill,

You make a good question. I made the 1 1/2" bore cannon back about 1985. Cannon is in Maine at the homestead and I haven't seen it in over perhaps 15 years. I just said in the post I used 5/32" fuse, I cannot trust my memory to that dimension. So I went to check the fuse size I use on my 5/8" cannon and it is 3/32". The 3/32" fuse looks like the fuse size I was using in the 1 1/2".

Here is how I determined the fuse hole in the 1 1/2" bore cannon...

I started out with a 1/4" bore 5" long brass cannon. Found it in a scrap pile. I took apart 1 1/2" firecrackers for the fuse. Don't remember what I used for powder in that.

That was great fun so I got a brass piece of propeller shafting from a boat and turned it a lathe with bands and taper. I bored the front of the bore about 1" diameter and perhaps 2 inches deep. The rest of the way I bored 1/2" all the way back to where a fuse would be. I bored the fuse hole to the diameter of the fuse simply because I didn't know better. It was really hard to push the fuse into the hole and that is how I discovered the waterproof fuse will fail if cracked. I fired that cannon so many times that blowback from the charge was cutting slots in the fuse hole and it was looking like a star pattern instead of a fuse hole. I friend brazed the hole closed and I drilled a new hole.

I got a piece of 1 1/2" Monel about 8 or nine inches and bored it 5/8". I drilled the touch hole ever so slightly bigger than the fuse I was using. I fired that and never had any problem with the blowback wrecking the fuse hole. But it wasn't big enough.

I started looking for and found a 4 1/2" piece of monel that was cut off the end of a new shaft in a big boat. It was perhaps 17" long. I asked my friend a gunsmith if I could use his lathe to make a cannon. He said absolutely. Well the older men were sitting around in the shop telling lies and one of them spoke up. David he says, let me bore and turn that in my lathe at work for you. So I did and he did. The lathe he used had a 6 foot swing with a bed maybe 30 feet long. So I used the same size drill as in the little monel cannon and placed the fuse hole right on the edge of the bottom of the bore using a drill press. Pure luck that was. I made the truck out of oak left over from a boat my father had just built.

I finally ran out of the waterproof fuse near 30 years later as it was a pretty big coil. The new stuff had variations in the diameter and I had to really cram it into the fuse hole to get it fed through so I could see it in the bottom of the bore. I would sometimes light it and it would fire and sometimes not. I moved to Florida because I couldn't take the cold any more. I was working at one of them government contracting outfits that attracts people that work with stuff I like and I asked one of the guys why my cannon wouldn't fire, was the fuse no good? He was quick to reply the fuse has to have enough room to breathe and it was trying to burn through a tight hole for about 1 1/2" of wall thickness in my barrel. Either make a bigger hole or buy some more fuse to try.

Well you don't drill a bigger hole in that cannon without breaking a lot of drills and then digging them out. Could ream it I suppose, but getting new fuse was the trick.

Now I will say that the cannon I use here is steel with a 5/8" bore, I do use the 3/32" waterproof fuse because I got some out and measured it. I thought I would try percussion caps #11 instead of fuse. It works, once. Then you have to unscrew the nipple, ream out the hole through to the bore , wash and dry, then screw the nipple back on. Then there's deciding on a hammer mechanism to fire to cap. No fun. Reading here on the forum seems like it may be the exhaust port of the nipple may be too large for the size of the fuse hole into the bore. So for now I leave out the nipple and stick to fuse.

dave
 
Top