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Author Topic: Flintlocks  (Read 2428 times)
Gilgamesh
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Posts: 55



« Reply #15 on: February 08, 2012, 09:03:58 PM »

u said u can make your own powder ? i would like to see that in an apocalyptic environment were a simple static charge can set black powder off i like vecs idea of a 12 ga and a 22LR more then a flinter they a very good guns but i dont think u would be able to flee for your life and make black
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Curdog
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Posts: 280


« Reply #16 on: February 09, 2012, 07:40:42 AM »

Well, he said a long-term hunting weapon, not a mad max situation.  For that I would want a sawed off double 12 ga., a steel boomerang, and an set of modified goalie pads.
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Combat-Trout
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Posts: 2892


« Reply #17 on: February 09, 2012, 02:12:18 PM »

u said u can make your own powder ? i would like to see that in an apocalyptic environment were a simple static charge can set black powder off i like vecs idea of a 12 ga and a 22LR more then a flinter they a very good guns but i dont think u would be able to flee for your life and make black

Hmmm, I'm guessing you didn't get to do this in HS chemistry... those were the days...

The static concern doesn't change, apocalyptic or lab setting... you're either careful or poof! Powder was being made long before our industrial processes came to play. Everything has its risks, hell, even making alcohol can be dangerous if you're not careful...
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"At least once every human should have to run for his life, to teach him that milk does not come from supermarkets, that safety does not come from policemen, that 'news' is not something that happens to other people. He might learn how his ancestors lived and that he himself is no different--in the crunch his life depends on his agility, alertness, and personal resourcefulness." - Robert Heinlein
Gilgamesh
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Posts: 55



« Reply #18 on: February 09, 2012, 05:39:28 PM »

the point was  the industry of trucking and stores wouldnt be a round so u would have to treck great lengths to get the chemicals like sulfur that go in there from a natural source
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Combat-Trout
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Posts: 2892


« Reply #19 on: February 09, 2012, 07:29:51 PM »

OHHHHH, since you said "i would like to see that in an apocalyptic environment were a simple static charge can set black powder off" I thought that's what you were getting at. I'm not a mind reader! Grin

I think the flintlock is a good addition to the tool chest, but it's more insurance for when everything else falls into unrepairable state and after the 22 and 12 aren't supportable. At the same time a good bow can be built, maintained, and fed for a long long time with very little investment in resources, time, or tools. And it's quiet... that will likely be a huge asset.

To your new point, sure getting the stuff will be harder, but then that'd be the case for anything so I don't see it as a unique issue. Anyone living in that environment will have to deal with it or they cease to be participants, everyone has a choice. The items used for making powder are naturally occurring and/or straight forward to derive, actually not to far from either of my usual haunts. Not true for everyone but that's a choice too. Sure, if it hits the fan for an extended period of time things will revert back to more regional/tribal means, but that doesn't meat that trade would stop. It'd just be slower, the pre-colombian civilizations had very extensive trade networks. Besides we'd have time without all the internet and hollyweird distractions... to do a lot of things the old way. Life would certainly be harder, but allowing that to be a barrier would not seem to be a successful survival strategy.

Anyway, time for dinner...
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"At least once every human should have to run for his life, to teach him that milk does not come from supermarkets, that safety does not come from policemen, that 'news' is not something that happens to other people. He might learn how his ancestors lived and that he himself is no different--in the crunch his life depends on his agility, alertness, and personal resourcefulness." - Robert Heinlein
james huffaker
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Posts: 430


« Reply #20 on: February 09, 2012, 08:06:55 PM »

 In a couple of issues of Backwoodsman magazine, there were recipes for home made  "black powder". One involved chickens, a coop and their droppings.
In Muzzle Loader magazine, toward the end of his run, Mark Baker had a series on trying to figure out how the old ones loaded and fired their muzzle loaders on the run or in a skirmish. I think he found something workable. Not suggesting going up against a dude with a modern weapon, but when the modern guns are no longer salvageable, when we run out of parts, and supplies, having a flinter around, that we have maintained, have the requisite knowledge to make run,and are practiced in, we might have a firearm to shoot. I hear there are still folks supplementing their food stuffs with grand pa's or ma's old flintlock, not out of choice, but because it's the gun they have that they can make shoot.

As always supplemented with modern firearms, bows/arrows, slingshot, traps, illegal fishing gear and the other poachers accoutrement's. There are times and places where in silence is golden. And yeah, heirloom seeds, a garden, absolutely assuming a stable location. Baker also wrote about tending the homestead while toting your weapon, took some getting used to, but required by the times if you wanted to stay alive.

Regards, Jim

ETA; If a tree doesn't make a sound when it falls in the forest if your not there to hear it, dose a gun shot?  Grin
« Last Edit: February 09, 2012, 09:59:34 PM by james huffaker » Logged
punaforge
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Posts: 271


« Reply #21 on: February 09, 2012, 09:09:53 PM »

I would not suggest that anybody tries to make it and there are many rules and laws regarding its manufacture but gunpowder was invented 600 years before OSHA
There are many skills between the hand drill and the microwave burrito that built civilization as we know it
So I guess maybe blacksmithing could be considered a survival skill
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At the farthest point from anywhere

There has always been, and will always be, the problem of surviving the experience that any trained expert can handle ... when there hasn't been any first survivor to be an expert! When no one has ever gotten back to explain what happened........... E.E.Smith
Zengunfighter
Lynch Mob
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Posts: 2332



« Reply #22 on: February 10, 2012, 07:26:30 AM »

Making black powder is relatively easy, if you have the 3 needed chemicals on hand. And relatively safe if you follow proper protocol.
Charcoal is real easy to make, but I think you need hard wood charcoal. There was some talk of English powder being superior to French in the 17-1800s, and some say it was partly because of a better grade of charcoal.
Nitrates can be gotten from manure. Not sure of the process, but manure is fairly common.
The problem is going to be sulfur. You are going to have to find it occurring naturally, Some place that hasn't already been discovered and removed.

Sure you can stockpile this stuff.
But if I'm stockpiling, it will be cartridges...

As I said earlier, the flinter is good to bring you closer to the heart of the activity, to get a baser understanding.
If, if TSHTF so badly that modern manufacturing is wiped out to the pre-1800s level, then I can see a flinters as sustainable tech at those levels.
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C.Atrox
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Posts: 40



« Reply #23 on: February 10, 2012, 07:36:04 AM »

They are as sustainable as an AR-15, except for the powder. Bullets are better for shtf but for day to day shooting chores a flint gun is fine. Economy being a huge factor. You can use a bare minimum of powder, and if you want to save ware and tear on the lock, or dont have flint then remove the frizzen and make it a match lock and set it off with a cigaret. Sure, its not an assault weapon, but it is as a valuable tool as any other rifle or shotgun, and 1000 times as versatile.
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I dont know what happened. The film broke, and I woke up in the hospital.
Curdog
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Posts: 280


« Reply #24 on: February 10, 2012, 08:02:40 AM »

Charcoal is real easy to make, but I think you need hard wood charcoal.

I understand willow was the prefered charcoal for powder making;

Nitrates can be gotten from manure. Not sure of the process, but manure is fairly common.

It can be sepparated from the earth from stables, latrines, etc.  Know that white stuff on old dog turds?  Its potassium Nitrate- saltpeter.

The problem is going to be sulfur. You are going to have to find it occurring naturally, Some place that hasn't already been discovered and removed.

This has always been the hard part for most people- the good news is that there are huge piles of Agricultural Sulphur all over farming areas, and it is cheap.  A couple of 100# bags in the garden shed are pretty handy!

Good flint is also pretty regionally specific, and there is skill involved in making them.  Not that hard, but not something a person with no experience is going to get right on intuition.  Pure lead for rifles is getting hard to find, but it is not strictly needed.  A smoothbore is very forgiving, and I shoot Wheel Weight (lead/antimony alloy) balls a lot for practice.  I PREFER lead for hunting, but range scrap and such will work.  For wadding, I LOVE hornet's nest.  For shot or ball, it is sweet.  Tallow, or tallow cut with a little vegetable oil, is all I ever use for patch lube.
« Last Edit: February 10, 2012, 08:17:52 AM by Curdog » Logged
mouse
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Posts: 745


« Reply #25 on: February 10, 2012, 10:37:29 AM »

Zen

Someone referred to a Backwoodsman article that I believe was titled Grandma's breakfast. Grandma's blackpowder was red and made by leaching chicken litter to get potassium nitrate (salt peter), sugar from molasses, and rust from scrapping oxidized metal.
I have NOT made this concoction but it is on my list. Grandma only needed half a thimbleful to get her squirrel.

Apparently, this mixture might be more potent than regular blackpowder so much caution is indicated.
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There are two kinds of people, I think, one who lives to buy more things and one who lives to learn how to do more things and neither understands the other.
james huffaker
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Posts: 430


« Reply #26 on: February 10, 2012, 06:29:28 PM »

Yup, That's one of the articles I was referring to. Grandma was patient and even reused her ball. She dug it from the tree after dispatching the squirrel. 

Regards, Jim
« Last Edit: February 10, 2012, 06:30:59 PM by james huffaker » Logged
mouse
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Posts: 745


« Reply #27 on: February 10, 2012, 08:55:24 PM »

James

That was one of my favorite articles. Rev. Hookers' grandma was real survivor, raised a passel of kids with very little resources.
I have been fortunate to know many ladies very similar to her and had many a meal of plain real food; squirrel & dumplings, cornbread, brown beans & ham, home churned butter, etc. I could  go on but I might get hungry.
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There are two kinds of people, I think, one who lives to buy more things and one who lives to learn how to do more things and neither understands the other.
Curmudgeon
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Posts: 1193



« Reply #28 on: February 10, 2012, 10:10:17 PM »

She was shooting a small caliber rifle ... 32 or 36 if I remember correctly.  Now I'll have to go find that edition and read it over again. 
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"It's easier to get things done with a kind word and a gun, than a kind word alone." - Al Capone
“It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change.” - Charles Darwin
james huffaker
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Posts: 430


« Reply #29 on: February 11, 2012, 06:50:03 AM »

Mouse, You already made me hungry! You recall the article on sausage gravy and biscuits? I can hear the coronary arteries screaming from here, but what a way to go. Come to think of it, I have some sausage in the fridge, and some AP flour...Hmmm. 

Regards Rev. Hookers Grandma, to her, it was probably just "life". My grand mother (RIP) had an expression in her Irish brogue "It's hard life if you don't weaken, and God help you if you do".

Regards, Jim

ETA "Now I'll have to go find that edition..."  Nice to know I'm not the only one who has a growing collection. Wink I'll never throw them out, I frequently find myself re re re reading them.

And yeah, blacksmithing, IMHO, is a very handy "life" skill, one I need to develop. Please see Mr. James Ballou's writings on backwoods blacksmithing. He had some article's in the older editions of Backwoodsman also.
« Last Edit: February 11, 2012, 09:19:35 AM by james huffaker » Logged
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