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Old 6th June 2012, 08:12 PM   #6
Matchlock's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Bavaria, Germany - the center of 15th and 16th century gunmaking
Posts: 4,310

Originally Posted by Jean-Marc S.
Dear Super Michael,

What an impressive collection you have !!!
Which flasks of the two shown in my last posts would better match a schwarze reiter officer armor dating to 1560-70 ?
My best,

Thanks a lot, JM!

I have always believed, and acted accordingly, that ultimate perfection to the tiniest detail is what counts when selecting and purchasing an item that is not exactly unique.

Concerning the Schwarze Reiter, I am afraid that no flask at all would match their accouterments. From all we know, wheellock pistols and carbines were not designed to, and could not, be loaded from flask on horseback. As soon as the (usually four or five) paper cartridges contained in either the cartridge box or a side bag of the pistol holster had run out the rider would have to return behind the lines.

I wish to add that my own firing experiences with original 17th century military wheellocks have shown that after ca. 8 to 10 rounds, usually both the pan and the surroundings of the wheel have been dirtied by both powder remains and small pieces of pyrites to such an extent that a certain amount of cleaning and/or oiling is necessary. Otherwise the wheel will be hampered in rotation, both when spanning it and in the process of spinning back and firing. Thus the fact that the largest number of recesses for paper cartridges in a patron/cartridge box that I have ever seen was nine, seems to have been inspired by practical use and experience.

As to the priming powder, it is presumed that a small portion of the powder contained in the paper cartridge was employed for priming the pan before letting the main amount of the powder plus the ball down the barrel, shoving the crumbled paper into the muzzle and ramming everything down with the ramrod.

For further reference on patrons/cartridge boxes, and a ca. 1620 wheellock pistol holster found untouched and retaining remains of paper cartridges and powder, the paper from a reused piece of neswpaper and dated 1621, please see

and scroll all the way down.

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