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Old 1st January 2015, 03:22 PM   #31
Matchlock
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Hi Nando,


Thank you for showing us this specimen.

I think it is notable for contrasting to the earlier stuff on the one hand, and at the same time closely connected with the U.S. ball molds posted above.
Yes, it sure bears witness of heavy use, and I especially like its charming rich patina.

Please allow me to add that the two sharpened scissors right beneath the head were for chopping off the founding nozzle from the ball; this is a remarkable fact because balls keeping that nozzle made binding them to paper cartridges easier.
I reckon that the only kind of fireams which balls retaining their founding neck could not be used with were revolvers.

In the catalog of the latest auction by San Giorgio, Genua, 21 Sept. 2014, I found another mold featuring those scissors.


Attached are images of a rare chest contintaing original paper cartridges for 19th c. U.S. revolvers.


Best,
Michl
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Last edited by Matchlock : 2nd January 2015 at 06:45 AM.
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Old 2nd January 2015, 06:32 AM   #32
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Great pics. As a shooter, and hand-loader, this adds wonderful insight into the history and traditions of ammunition, and firearms, and... My education continues... Thank you so much
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Old 2nd January 2015, 12:51 PM   #33
Matchlock
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Hi B.,

Since my early childhood days, I have always been a shooter myself. Until about 10 years ago, I used to fire some of my original 400 year-old matchlocks and wheellocks, plus many thousands of rounds from my monstrous heavy .44 cap and ball Colt Walker, my Winchester rifle and my mighty roaring and kicking hard .357 Magnum Colt Single Action Army (SAA) Buntline, with its 16 inch barrel!
Of course, I hand loaded all my muzzleloaders, and I sure made them digest the heaviest loads possible - which they all did.
And, of course, I never harmed any kind of living being.
Against a background of self-experience like this, allow an old "shootist" to just say "Thanks" for appreciating his pictures.

Best,

Michael

Last edited by Matchlock : 3rd January 2015 at 08:31 AM.
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Old 2nd February 2015, 02:30 PM   #34
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Thank you very much for your experience so generously shared Michael, as well as your excellent pictures.

The usual English term for the founding nozzle is the sprue. When I am casting balls for my muzzleloaders, the sprue cutter in a modern mould is a rotating plate which is knocked sideways to both cut the sprue and unlock the mould blocks. The scissor moulds displayed here would require shears or pincers - even just a sharp knife - to remove the sprues.


As you note above the sprue cone would be ideal to allow a cartridge to be tied off with thread. Another innovation of approximately 1850 by Robert Adams of London for use in percussion revolvers, was to cast a spike on the ball as pictured, and place a greased felt wad on the spike. It was intended that these wads and projectiles be thumbed into the chambers rather than using a larger diameter ball and force it in with a lever rammer. In practice this was unsatisfactory, as the recoil would leave the bullets projecting from the chambers. The innovation was abandoned, then superseded in a few years by cartridge revolvers.
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Last edited by ChrisPer : 2nd February 2015 at 11:44 PM.
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