Short barrel as powerful as long barrel?

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Spence10

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So, all you guys are saying the man lied about his results? That the ball from the derringer charged with 40 gr. FFFg didn't wind up in the 4th jug? Why would he do that? I've had that site showing the building and shooting of the CVA derringer bookmarked for years, and it never occurred to me that he was lying. He seemed as surprised as I that the 40 grain ball penetrated as much as it did.

I've seen not one iota of evidence presented that he lied. Did I miss it? Or, just possibly, everybody with that opinion is just unable to accept his results because it doesn't line up with their ideas of the way things work, so it must be wrong? It's not possible that there were other factors involved which caused that result but had nothing to do with velocity or energy?

It's no wonder that the sport/hobby of BP shooting is so full of misinformation, old wives tales and bovine excrement. New information doesn't stand a chance because the operative assumption has forever been that it all comes from liars, cheats or idiots.

Spence
 

Carbon 6

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I have both guns, I could duplicate his test but I have no ballistic jell or chronograph.
I suppose I could whip up a ballistic pendulum as an alternative.
 

Bighorserider

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The fact is that powder only propels the ball while the ball is in the barrel. In any gun if there is more powder in the charge than will burn before the ball leaves the barrel it won't give more velocity and may give less because it effectively increases the weight of what has to be pushed out of the barrel.
 

mooman76

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I have both guns, I could duplicate his test but I have no ballistic jell or chronograph.
I suppose I could whip up a ballistic pendulum as an alternative.
Some people use wet phone books or newspaper to act like balistic jell.
 

Carbon 6

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Some people use wet phone books or newspaper to act like balistic jell.
Well, Like I said I own both guns and have shot them a lot so,
I think something more, scientific than phone books is needed.
 

Bob McBride

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I would say this is an interesting test and it suggests that at 4 ft a derringer will hit ballistic jell or water bottles similarly to a longer barreled pistol. I’ll buy that as a general observation, keeping in mind the water, not compressible, acts with greater force on the faster ball. Sort of a “you can shoot yourself in the head with either and get a similar result” test. Chin to chin a pin knife is as good as a sword, at 5’, not so much.
 
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zimmerstutzen

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I call horse manure. In the derringer, how much bore space is there for powder and still seat the ball? Depends on the derringer's barrel length. Inside, not outside. Once saw a range twit fill the barrel on one of those derringers leaving just enough room for a patched ball. When he fired it the ball bounced off the ground about 50 ft in front of him. I figure the ball didn't have enough down bore space to develop any more velocity than that. less powder would have probably provided more velocity, I would have to see a comparison using some measurable down range energy. 40 grains burns fast in a short barrel, but I do not believe a barrel that short.
 

hanshi

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I call horse manure. In the derringer, how much bore space is there for powder and still seat the ball? Depends on the derringer's barrel length. Inside, not outside. Once saw a range twit fill the barrel on one of those derringers leaving just enough room for a patched ball. When he fired it the ball bounced off the ground about 50 ft in front of him. I figure the ball didn't have enough down bore space to develop any more velocity than that. less powder would have probably provided more velocity, I would have to see a comparison using some measurable down range energy. 40 grains burns fast in a short barrel, but I do not believe a barrel that short.


:thumb: Good point!
 

mooman76

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Well, Like I said I own both guns and have shot them a lot so,
I think something more, scientific than phone books is needed.
You mean like water jugs? Phone books or newspaper you can see how many layers or depth it goes through.
 

Carbon 6

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You mean like water jugs? Phone books or newspaper you can see how many layers or depth it goes through.
I'd start by duplicating his test, then test by other means to verify the results. It's not that the guy was lying, it's just a singular test.
 

mooman76

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I don't believe he was lying either and I didn't see where anyone actually called him a lyer. Just don't think the way he did it was a good example of a power comparison. Like someone stated, the derringer could have barely made it through that last water bottle and the other could have bounced off the back. I have a long barreled pistol myself but no derringer to do a comparison.
 

Carbon 6

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I don't believe he was lying either and I didn't see where anyone actually called him a lyer. Just don't think the way he did it was a good example of a power comparison. Like someone stated, the derringer could have barely made it through that last water bottle and the other could have bounced off the back. I have a long barreled pistol myself but no derringer to do a comparison.
The test is incomplete. It's just one piece of the puzzle. It doesn't answer the "why".
 

SDSmlf

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OPs topic is about power. Note topic title (‘Short barrel as powerful as long barrel?’). Website referenced is about penetration (‘With a hot load, it penetrated as well as a longer barreled pistol and reached the required 12 inches of penetration’). Power does not equal penetration. Then we are told that website referenced is accused of having lied about about results because some some don’t agree. Glad I only went through 5th grade once.
 

Woodnbow

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I don’t believe that he’s lying about the results he obtained. I just don’t believe those results mean what he thinks they mean.
 

Carbon 6

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The thing that bothers me, is that 10 extra grains of powder delivered 4 times the penetration.
 

nbforestiv

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John Wilkes-Booth killed Lincoln with a 44 cal. Derringer. That bullet changed the history of this nation.
That was a .41 cal. Derringer, one of a cased pair, he dropped the other one when he jumped to the stage, the janitor found it the next day while sweeping up, the short barreled guns were for concealment, and up close and personal shots!
 

LawrenceA

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My thoughts for what they are worth.

Well, Like I said I own both guns and have shot them a lot so,
I think something more, scientific than phone books is needed.
I think you have nailed it. A chronograph/ballistic pendulum should tell you all you needed to know? Not that I have ever seen one.
On the basis that the same weight, hardness and profile of bullet was used from both firearms then velocity can be used to determine energy.
As mentioned further up energy is not a clear decider of penetration but tells you something. Bullet expansion would then speak the rest.
All this would then tell if there is a difference. If the derringer was the same power then the question becomes "why?"

It's no wonder that the sport/hobby of BP shooting is so full of misinformation, old wives tales and bovine excrement. New information doesn't stand a chance because the operative assumption has forever been that it all comes from liars, cheats or idiots.
I don't think anyone says he has lied. From my reading it would appear that there is some concern over the "Unit of Measure" used to measure the outcome.
A 0.5" group becomes 1" if we don't use decimals.
Any experiment needs to have repeatable results. As you say we cannot blindly accept a change in the paradigm. The fact that there is talk on how to repeat the experiment makes me believe that the forum is willing to entertain new ideas.

Other factors that may affect the results between the results.
The other factor that may not have been mentioned was projectile fit? Was there blow by in one of the pistols? Was there a difference in patch/wad?
Was the powder burning at the same rate? Humidity, Temperature and grain size can all affect burning rates.
Caps probably wouldn't make much difference but might (can be noticed in some specialised unmentionables). Also the efficiency of the nipple. Power can be bled off by a worn out flash channel.
 
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