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Tue, Aug. 14th, 2007, 01:28 am
Flint lock in operation.

Note that anti-gun people who claim that we would be safer with 18th century guns never stood next to a flintlock musket. It is decidedly less safe for the user or the bystanders than modern guns.

Hi-res 1600px

Even larger image (14,560px high) is available for publication use.

Tue, Aug. 14th, 2007 06:44 am (UTC)

Ух, классно!
Всю жизнь мечтаю из чего-то подобного стрельнуть.

Tue, Aug. 14th, 2007 08:00 am (UTC)
(Anonymous): Wow!

Is this normal for a flint gun?

I wonder how they managed in the days of lines of infantry, a few men deep, all firing these!

Tue, Aug. 14th, 2007 12:55 pm (UTC)
3fgburner: Re: Wow!

Matchlocks are worse. For that matter, people don't realize the kind of damage that a musket will do. I'd just finished a musket demo at Jamestown, and some woman made a comment [insert sniffy matron tone here] that "people should be limited to those, instead of those nasty automatic things".

I reached into my pouch and pulled out a 9mm round, and a musket ball. Switching to my best Ah-nold Schwartzenegger voice, I said,

"Vould you rather get shot wit' de Uzi nine-millimeter... or de Musket EIGHTEEN-Millimeter?".

Shut her right up, it did.

Tue, Aug. 14th, 2007 03:30 pm (UTC)
olegvolk: Re: Wow!

And you anticipated the poster which is currently half-finished on my computer!

Tue, Aug. 14th, 2007 09:18 pm (UTC)
(Anonymous): Re: Wow!

You should see the iron, railroad tie plate we shot with the little 50 cal muzzleloader. A patched round ball put deep, nasty craters in it, blowing red-hot iron out of the craters and cracking the back side.

Then there'd be grape-shot fired from cannon (cannon which were privately owned during the American revolution) to say nothing of the exploding artillery and the canister-shot used back in the 1600s...

Thu, Oct. 9th, 2008 04:51 pm (UTC)

On this iron plate which would ret red hot in the middle we would push our tins to boil or fry or cook and if a tin boiled some one would look at the tag attached to said tin and holler the number “Number five tin boiling, and number twelve, then if no one came to clam the tins or tin it would be put to the outside of the group of tins and slowly it would work its way to the middle again.

Wed, Aug. 15th, 2007 12:49 am (UTC)
(Anonymous): Re: Wow!

I have never fired a flint lock or match lock firearm. How close to the face is this 'explosion'? I can't quite make it out, but is the explosion to the side of the gun?

After seeing these picks I think I am going to find someone with a flintlock and persuade them to let me have a go :) Looks like good fun!

Wed, Aug. 15th, 2007 01:18 am (UTC)
3fgburner: Re: Wow!

This is why you fire 'em right-handed, even if you're a leftie. The touch-hole is on the right side of the barrel, as is the pan. Starting in the late 1500s, they began putting a vertical plate, a bit bigger than a thumbnail, behind the pan. You still want to have a floppy hat, though. That way, you look through the sights, and have the hat brim between the pan and your face. My musketeer hat's got several interesting burns and scorch marks on it.

You'll also notice that musketeers have the left side of the hat cocked up. This is because you carry it on your left shoulder, not your right. That way, the touch-hole is pointing away from your face in the event of a spontaneous ignition.

Here's a few albums of mine, with some boomage:


BTW, a musket typically is a twelve-bore, aka 12 balls / pound, aka 12 gauge. Think 12-gauge pumpkin ball. Damage inside 100 yards is equivalent to a 12ga slug.

Wed, Aug. 15th, 2007 05:54 am (UTC)
(Anonymous): Re: Wow!

Very interesting, thanks for the info. I like your pics :)

Thu, Oct. 9th, 2008 05:39 pm (UTC)

I have never fired a 50 cal sniper rifle, but would love to. Posted by: Carl at August PM The M shouldn't be included in comments about a sniper rifle.

Fri, Oct. 17th, 2008 06:50 am (UTC)

I have never fired a 50 cal sniper rifle, but would love to. Posted by: Carl at August PM The M shouldn't be included in comments about a sniper rifle.

Tue, Aug. 14th, 2007 02:06 pm (UTC)
tlekas: Timing?

What was the time between each photo?

I own a Flint lock and I have gone hunting with it. When firing it I notice the flash but I can't tell from my position how big it is. I am focused on the front sight and trying to hold steady because there is always a significant amount of time between pulling the trigger and when the ball finally leaves the muzzle with these things.

I don't teach the NRA Muzzle Loading Rifle course but I have a friend who does. Would it be OK to point him to this image for use in the course?

Tue, Aug. 14th, 2007 03:32 pm (UTC)
olegvolk: Re: Timing?

Not sure about the timing. I took quite a few photos to get these. My camera only runs at 3fps and this was in low light, too.

You are welcome to use these for the muzzle loading course...a photo credit with the site URL would be much appreciated.

Tue, Aug. 14th, 2007 11:07 pm (UTC)
(Anonymous): Musket Safety

For another illustration of muskets' supposed "safety" it may be instructive to go to a military museum that has an exhibit on military medicine. I saw one such at the museum of the Gettysburg Battlefield Memorial Park in Pennsylvania. (For students of non-U.S. history: summer of 1863, major battle, massive casualties on both sides) It is possible to get wounded with a modern rifle or pistol round and, barring damage to major organs, recover to full health. With a big, slow-moving lead ball anything more than a scratch meant pulverized flesh, bone smashed to splinters, probable amputation if possible -- there is no comparison.

Перевод: еще одну иллюстрацию мнимой "безопасности" мушкетов стоит пойти в военный музей, содержащий экспонаты на тему военной медицины. Я видел такое в музее мемориального парка на поле битвы при Геттисберге в Пеннсильвании(лето 1863-го года, крупное сражение, много убитых и раненых с обеих сторон -- если кто-то не ту историю учил). Современный патрон теоретически способен нанести рану, от которой можно полностью выздороветь если не задеты важные ограны. А большие, медленно летящие мушкетные пули наносят -- если не всего лишь царапину -- тяжелые ранения с измельченной мышечной тканью и раздробленными костями. Никакого сравнения нет.

Gene K. (blog) (http://geneandjen.com/cgi-bin/cblog)

Wed, Aug. 15th, 2007 01:19 am (UTC)
3fgburner: Re: Musket Safety

Check the 17th C surgical stuff in the albums linked from my comment, above :-).

Fri, Aug. 17th, 2007 12:46 am (UTC)
(Anonymous): Chirurgery

Some things hurt just to think about. Back in the day, getting wounded was just the beginning of a fighting man's troubles, wasn't it?

Fri, Aug. 17th, 2007 01:06 am (UTC)
3fgburner: Re: Chirurgery

Depended a lot on time period, and who treated you. 16th and 17th C military surgeons were a lot better than the odd barber-surgeon or itinerant tooth-puller. In the 1500s, they're already using things like alcohol and vinegar on wounds. There's a drop in cleanliness and other standards in a lot of places, late 1700s - early 1800s. I'd rather be treated by Ambroise Paré (1510-1590) than some of the quacks in America in the 19th Century. Granted, university-trained doctors were better. However, there weren't any certifying bodies to speak of in the US at that time.

Sun, Aug. 19th, 2007 10:58 pm (UTC)
(Anonymous): Re: Chirurgery

You make a good point. It stands to reason that during and after the Renaissance nobles and professional soldiers would have wanted a proper doctor and not some quack to follow them on campaigns. I still suspect, however, that their services would not have been available to all troops. The professional doctors would have focused on the Landsknechts and so on, while casualties of ordinary levies would have been left for the corpse-robbers and the crows.

Wed, Aug. 15th, 2007 01:38 pm (UTC)
(Anonymous): flint-lock operation

Maybe you have said note TO anti gunners. But they wouldn't care anyway.