Re: OK - here's another one for you!

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Posted by Clabert on January 18, 2000 at 13:06:41:

In Reply to: Re: OK - here's another one for you! posted by Bill R on January 18, 2000 at 10:45:29:

:Bill and Jayne,
You may be right on that "store" vs. "source" but either one would be correct in this case. The "source" of powder could be their "stores". But chances are, they filled their own horns from it for several reasons. Most everyone had their own horns and new them well. (how much they held and maybe had the powder measure tied to it) Plus, there have been many copper funnels and powder scoops found in forts and trading posts that were used to measure and pour powder in horns. Copper being used so as not to produce a spark while scooping powder from a large container. Again, we don`t see any of this and it`s all speculation but that`s the way it was done. I do agree with you on the powder horns being kept in the "stores". Cannoneers priming horns were LARGE to say the least and we do see them being used in the movie. What get`s me is the use of the name "18 inch morters". Cannon were sized by the pound of shot it used not the inches of the bore. Those names weren`t used till after the Civil War.
You are correct in your discription of powder size. (You girls listen to this guy, he knows what he`s talking about)


: Jo, Dana, all

: 2f and 3f etc refer to the size of the grains of powder. Bigger the bore, larger the size of powder used. Smallest is 4f, largest cannon. I doubt much 4f was used, as has been pointed out 3f likely was the grade used in the rifles - at least it is today - with 2f being used in muskets. Though, I do tend to think that lacking ANY powder 2f would not have been turned down by Hawkeye and company. It would work.

: Back to "source" and "stores". I vote for "stores". Being a fort, they would undoubtedly have powder stores. Barrels of it.
: Horns of it even. You can see the cannoneers loading the touch holes from a horn. I doubt they would take the time to fill horns when action broke out. Likely they would have done that as a preparation and have them handy. I suspect that the horns would have been filled with 2f powder - good priming powder for cannons - while the main charges were of cannon grade powder.
: Therefore - taking this guesstimate to its conclusion - when Hawkeye says "a few horns of powder from your stores" he meant just that. He didnt mean fill his horn - he meant take a few already stockpiled. That is my guess anyways. Course, I could just as well be full of wadding too....

: Bill R

: : : : : : : So - their powder is "soakin' wet" (said in a distinctly DDL Irish accent) and therefore useless...right? So does it dry out in time to put Duncan out of his misery?! Or do they stop at Ye Olde Gunpowder Shoppe on their way to the Huron village? Answers please on a postcard to.... all right a follow up mail will do!

: : : : : : : Adele

: : : : : : OK ... Since no one seems to want to tackle these things, I'll give it a shot. This one is easy. If the powder was wet when they ARRIVED at the cave, it was surely useless by the time they jumped through the falls & were swept down river. Of course, it was 2 days, or so, later when they arrived at the Huron Village, so it could have dried, however, the probable answer is:

: : : : : : It was common practice among Indians & frontiersman to store various necessities in little hideouts, called caches, at various locales within their territory for just this kind of emergency. Undoubtedly, Hawkeye et al visited one of theirs, after pulling themselves from the river, & replenished their powder ...

: : : : : : Anyone want to take a stab at the other two questions posed???
: : : : : ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
: : : : : Hey Adele and Rich!

: : : : : I am TRYING to learn about guns like the one Hawkeye used. HA! Powder? What KIND of pwder? What 'load'? Was it 2f or 3f? Was there a different powder for priming? HMMMMMM? How did they know WHICH powder to hide in the trees? :)))))

: : : : : Just joking. This gun thing is the hardest part of trekking for me to understand. I'll keep pluggin' away, though.

: : : : : Dana S.
: : : : ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

: : : : First of all, if you remember they asked for "some powder from your source" and being a militaty base, 2f was used in the muskets. :) But in a .50 caliber rifle like his, I would and do use 3f. He also primed from his main horn before the courier ran from the fort.
: : : : The powder was carried by the soldiers in paper cartridges and they were very prone to water damage. And if the stoppers in the horns were tight, just the powder in the front of the horn got wet making it just a matter of poking a stick in to clear the spout. The powder could be poured out and dried in a few hours. Black powder can be dried and maybe reground and it`s ready for use again.
: : : : Putting all this aside, being the woodsman Hawkeye was, he more then likly had a cache somewhere abouts.

: : : : Clabert

: : :
: : : Hi, Clabert.

: : : I thought I knew every word from our beloved movie, but you proved me wrong. All this time I thought Hawkeye said "some powder from your stores", thinking he meant from their stored powder supply! Learn somethin' new every day (in my case, every hour, maybe every minute). Thanks for clearin' it up for me!

: : : Jayne

: : ________

: : OK, missed something here (not to hard for me to do!) What is a 2f??? what kind of measurement is this??

: : Jo

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