Who knows anything about this naval cannon?

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I was recently given this cannon and as usual I know nearly nothing about what I own. From the look I guessed it was a naval cannon instead of regular artillery because of the distinct carriage. There are also hooks for rope around the carriage and the wheels obviously wouldn't be used on land. Speaking of which the wheels seem to be on the wrong way round. If I am correct shouldn't the big wheels be at the front while the small wheels are at the back? I don't have a clue what age it is or where it was manufactured and stationed. The barrel is 36 inches long, the carriage is 35.5 inches long and the whole thing is 43.5 inches long overall. The cannon is 6.5 inches wide at the breech and the trunnions are 11 inches across. The big wheels have a diameter of 9.75 inches while the small wheels have a diameter of 6 inches. The muzzle hole is about 2.5 inches wide. The carriage is 14 inches wide while the carriage and wheels together are 19 inches wide. The large wheels are 2.5 inches wide while the small wheels are 1.75 inches wide. The cannon appears to be iron (my magnet stuck to it). There don't appear to be any markings on the cannon. The barrel is blocked by clay, rocks or something. The previous owner used to launch fireworks from it which I guess didn't help.

Any information on the cannon is appreciated and if you have any questions i'm happy to try and answer.


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Rifleman1776

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Ship it to me for further, extensive, study and I will eventually answer all your questions. :wink:
A nice piece. Enjoy. As for getting your quesitions (really) answered...
Halo....Squire Robin...are you there??
 

robinghewitt

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Rifleman1776 said:
Halo....Squire Robin...are you there??
Hi Frank

I have read Blackmore's book The Ordnance, I am a life member of the Ordnance Society, I have been to see Queen Elizabeth's pocket pistol, I went on a cannon recognition course at the Rotunda before they moved the collection. There I saw the last surviving ECW cannon carriage and the cannon dredged from the wreck of the Mary Rose. I discovered for myself the Bombard lost in the moat at Bodiam Castle before I knew what it was. I have 2 six pounder Falkirks on sea service carriages in the garage below my seat and I can honestly say I have never seen anything like this cannon in my life.
Your friend :surrender:

Robin
 

Fernando Keilty

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Hello everyone

For me, it is a reproduction. The'touchole not perforated, the dies are placed on the center line - the casting is easier - it's strange the mirror and I also think it is very weak metal thickness, being of cast iron.

Fernando K
 

Fernando Keilty

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hi:

The big wheel is a wheel machine transmission, the method still has grease built

Fernando K

(Sorry for the translator)
 

zimmerstutzen

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At least as to the carriage, I agree with Fernando. The smaller wheels look like something from an early 20th century warehouse dolly and I would not be surprised if there were zerk grease fittings on the medial sides The larger wheels do have oil pots. Which denotes a wheel meant for spinning on a regular basis. Don't know when such oil pots came into use, but probably latter half of 19th century. Small old naval cannons more frequently had wooden wheels.

Old original cannons usually had better finishing. casting marks and roughness would have been removed. In addition, the carriage wood like like pine.

That said, I am still quite envious and you have a gem.

I have a similar bronze cannon made in the 1970's at a home foundry here in Pennsylvania, by an eccentric gent who spent his last 20 years making cannons in a shed behind his house. I made a similar carriage and used the cast wheels of an old feed mill scale.
 
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I read over your bit about markings and double checked the cannon. on the top of the barrel between the 2nd band from top and the double bands near the trunnions, where some sort of crest or marking should be, there seems to be some kind of scuffing or very smooth part which may suggest that the markings were removed
 
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something I forgot to mention about the carriage. my friend who gave it to me it a mechanic/carpenter and did a fix-up job on the carriage and repainted it. if you want an idea of the old colour/look on one of the photos of the camera facing the Northwest face of the cannon you can see a small stepped piece of wood on the side of the brick flower bed. the whole carriage used to look something like that. this small piece was either unimportant or forgotten in the fix-up job.My friend may have painted the cannon itself to look new. I must ask him for confirmation
 

robinghewitt

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Rifleman1776 said:
Interesting info.
I don't think it was interesting at all it was merely my qualification to pass an opinion.

Cannons were not decorated in a haphazard fashion, there were rules. If the rules were not obeyed it simply doesn't look right.

If this is a genuine piece made for the military then I guess Spanish. I have never really got on with their strange mix of European and Arab.

I was trying not to be the one to rain on his parade, again, but is that really a sprue in front of the touch hole? :idunno:
 
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uh oh. that doesn't sound good. :\ despite all of this , as a cannon expert, would you say it is still a nice piece or is it not worth the wood it sits on? :idunno:
 

zimmerstutzen

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My opinion is that it is not old as in pre 1860. It may well be "olde" as in something from 1900 and used as a signal gun to start yacht races. It is a neat piece anyway, whether old by a couple centuries or a couple decades.

I would put some study into real original cannon of that style and build a more HC carriage of a wood that was used for the old ones and in that style.

Have an expert check the barrel. If it is indeed a newer salute gun, there would be little harm in dressing off the mold casting defects.

When I acquired my rough cast bronze barrel, it took many hours to remove the casting marks just to make it more presentable. (I never did finish it)
 

ChrisPer

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I think its a decorator cannon. Don't start trying to smooth it up the work will be really a lot if its cast iron and it might end up worse looking. Don't try shooting it for real but it will probably be safe with small blank charges.

One pair or both of the wheels is probably a replacement pair. I would suspect that they were scrounged up in the late 20th century, and you should feel free to find or make better ones.

Is the loose piece of wood perhaps a wedge that goes under the breech to set elevation?
 

robinghewitt

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zimmerstutzen said:
It may well be "olde" as in something from 1900 and used as a signal gun to start yacht races. It is a neat piece anyway
I could go with that. Americans made a lot of cannons for their civil war and they didn't seem to worry so much about bands at the ends of the reinforcements, faddy bits at the muzzle and decorative cascabels, "What have dolphins got do do with a cannon y'all?" :youcrazy:

Meaning, when someone wanted one casting up for the yacht club and wanted pirate rather than Stonewall Jackson they had nothing to copy :thumbsup:
 

zimmerstutzen

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40 yrs ago, my first blank firing muzzle loader cannon came from an auction of a long defunct sailing club on Lake Erie. A little 75 caliber that can really "bark" when loaded with 100 grains and a few fiber wads. Hence my thoughts about starting yacht races.
 

zimmerstutzen

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Now that I looked the pictures over again, I would carefully measure the cannon inside and out.

My personal safety rule, regardless of any artillery association suggestions, is that there be at least a bore's thickness of metal in every direction behind and beside to the breech So if the bore is 1 inch, the barrel better be three inches at the breech. Measure from the muzzle to the depth of the bore and then along the outside. There should be at least that much between the end of the breech and outside of the barrel. If it doesn't have that, I will not even shoot blanks.

Pictures and angles can be deceiving, but in the first picture, it appears that the cannon may not have that much metal at the breech. Others may have different views on this, but when it comes to something that can become a grenade, I get a bit overly cautious.

It would be a great decorator piece anyway.
 
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i would. unfortunately the barrel is blocked about halfways down with soil, clay or rocks. I tried getting it out but didn't work.
 

54ball

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No telling whats in it. It could be anything including gun powder. So be careful.

As far as shooting... I would not light a fuse on it until it was examined by an expert, Xrayed and maybe even maginfluxed. It may need a liner installed to make a blank shooter.

Could it be Near Eastern, Ottoman/Turkish?, Indian or Oriental??
 
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