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Bradley

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Um,

I hate to post my first remark as a doubtful one, but DID it move? ::

I took the image into Photoshop and matched up the barrel features (ridges, bumps and shallows) and the ball is exactly the same size in both. If you look at the long ridges at the 10:00 o'clock and 2:00 o'clock positions, as well as the dark feature at the 4:00 o'clock and the bump at the 9:00 o'clock positions, they appear to still be in the same position in relationship to the ball. The 2 ridges closest to the ball (10 and 2 o'clock) are pretty much identical between the two photos, although the lighting seems a bit different.

I'm afraid it may be more a difference in perspective than ball movement. :(

I HOPE I'm wrong, because I am very interested in finding out what's in there. It may have moved a bit, but the photos don't really show much movement at all...if any.
I wish I could figure out how to post my enhanced image showing the comparison between the two...One overlaying the other.

Sorry to make my first post sound kind of negative. I am really hoping you get the ball out. There may be nothing in there, but who knows? The idea of anything of historical importance is more than worth the effort to find out.

By the way, Greetings All...
(yeah, I have to find a proper screen name in the near future)
 

robinghewitt

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I hate to post my first remark as a doubtful one, but DID it move? ::
Hi Bradley and welcome,

You be a doubtful as you want, anyone with an interest in cannon is okay in my book :thumbsup:

Maybe it didn't move, but I saw a ring of crud appear around it, like it was pushing it forward. OTOH I could be mistook.

Moved or not I just brazed a 6.8mm drill into a shank so I can thread the ball 8mm ISO coarse. (Just trying to figure out how to hold the tap). I'll also need some kind of guide so I hit it in the middle.

I have 1 ton of lift on that crane thing, let's see what it makes of that ::
 

musketman

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I suggest ramming the ball back down. if it did move forwards, it should push back with ease to is original location...

Then brush it again and re-drop it...

I think this process would walk the ball out...
 

WRussell

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Tap-tap-tap, or in this case, wham-wham-wham has a lot going for it over a steady pressure.

What comes to my mind is a scale model of a pile driver - model railroad HO scale (Brit OO pretty much) - darn small model. Guy set it up at an open house so he hammered a finishing nail into a piece of plywood to give the itty bitty hammer something to tap-tap-tap on, and when he came back at the end of the day to collect it he found the nail driven right on through.

In other words, I'm with Musket Man - before you start drilling on that ball, I think it's worth smacking the ball back and forth a bit. You could cut a post to go in the barrel so when it drops the post rams the ball back (can you rig a remote release in case there's powder that detonates?)

And are you saying you didn't measure the distance from the muzzle to the ball before you started??? What are you, excited or something???

I can just see this happening in the garage - the powder lights off and sends the cannon up through the house. Oh my. :eek:
 

robinghewitt

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The cannon is now hanging 6" above the floor, completely supported by a 10mm iron bar screwed into the ball. The loose strap is there to catch it should it come free.

Around the ball is a pool of phosphoric acid and I'm leaving it like that overnight.

 

63mini

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Squire Robin,

Great photos and progress. What a task. But, worth it in the end.

However, the last photo may give new meaning to "Bump in the Night"..... :crackup: (I just don't trust those hydraulic lifts for long periods of time)

We look forward to the final results. :blue:
 

Guest
Hold everything! Is it me, or do I see numbers on the ball? I'd really go the whole nine yards and run a cylinder hone with lots of grease down the bore. Phosphoric acid is serious stuff. It was discovered in medieval times when alchemists were searching for a universal solvent.

 

musketman

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Hold everything! Is it me, or do I see numbers on the ball?
Could be where the cylinder hone was turning against it, don't really see them on the "before" image...
 

robinghewitt

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No movement :rolleyes:

It has penetrated down one side (3 o'clock in the picture) so that when I top up the acid it just runs through amd bubbles come back up.

This morning I tried jumping up and down on it and tapping it with a 7 lb sledge hammer :hmm:

 

musketman

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You can't expect centuries of rust to just let go over night, these things take time to dissolve, keep at it...
 

Powder Keg

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Maby thread the other end of the shaft and use it like a puller or a slide hammer. Good luck,
 

HarborMaster

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After this ball is finally removed., a safe way to guarantee the etching process of the acid will stop corroding this cannon (even washing with water will not stop the corosive etching) is to:

pour 1 cup of vinegar in the barrel., then heat up 1 gallon of water while dilluting into the water 1/4 cup of baking soda.
Pour the water / soda solution into the vinegar in the barrel., swab it thoroughly and liberally., for about 10 minutes., then rinse it out.

a great neutralizer if you love this old cannon.
 

robinghewitt

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The acid was leaking away past the ball before it had much effect so I have changed the setup again and gone for electrolysis.

I flushed it all out with boiling water, poured in washing soda solution and hooked it up to a battery charger with a bulb to limit the current.

The cannon is the negative, the ball is the sacrificial anode and it's flowing about an amp. Lots of fizz and guck coming to the surface so something is happening down there.

best regards

Squire Robin
 

gof

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This is soooo exciting!

Thanks for keeping us posted.


GoF
 

SKS_madman

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Robin, just pointing this out (its all assumption), what if as others have said it was filled with people's jewelry or (even worse) a ship's log is behind there being ground on by that acid? :shocking: :nono: :eek:
 
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