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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Last September I mentioned to a friend that I was intending to get a black powder cannon and build a carriage for it. Little did I know then what an adventure it would be. My friend (RB) mentioned that he had a customer in the Dallas area (Bob) some years ago and in the back of the facility, Bob had a cannon on a carriage. RB said he had not talked to Bob in many years and would call him and ask if he still had the cannon and if so, could we stop by and look at it - I had never seen a 19th century cannon close up. He did call and found that Bob had sold his business and retired, and yes, Bob did have his cannon still, and found that he and a friend (Jerry) had made a field carriage, a naval carriage, and also a mortar.

RB with Jerry and Bob's Naval Carriage Cannon


Bob was going out of town for a few weeks (and now lives a few hours south of Dallas) and suggested to RB that he connect with Jerry as he had their naval carriage. RB and I ended up meeting Jerry at his house and spent a couple hours talking cannons and seeing the pictures they had taken of the various steps of building the carriages. I thoroughly enjoyed the visit and learned a lot. Jerry was kind enough to give me a friction primer - I'd never even seen one before. I did not have a cannon, but I had a start - which became the Verbruggen / 1849 First Model Prairie Carriage I've share here on GBO:
I've never done this before... 1849 First Model...

My Verbruggen is a 2.25" bore. Learning as I have... 39/40th's is the ideal cannon ball size, or 2.19375". Like any new cannon owner, naturally... I need cannon balls !! I've looked far and wide and have come to learn there is not a good source for a cannon ball for my cannon.

When I was at Jerry's he showed us cannon balls he and Bob had made - for the 2.25" bore cannon on their naval carriage. They made a mold and poured their own cannon balls. I've spoken with Jerry a few times as I was building my carriage and then recently asked about the cannon ball mold. He gave me one of his cannon balls to ensure it would fit my cannon. I tested it in a section of 2.25" ID DOM tubing and it fits well:



I mentioned the mold to ZULU a month ago when I saw him, and then mentioned it to Double D also - both were intrigued, knowing already that a mold for this size cannon ball has been hard to find. Double D asked me to check and see if Jerry and Bob might loan their mold so that we (those here on GBO) with a need for a ball for a 2.25" cannon might be able to get some cannon balls made.

I heard from Jerry today and YES, they are willing to loan the mold - THANK YOU Jerry and Bob !! Now we need to figure out how to get some cannon balls made. More to come.
 

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I sent Rotometals an email at 3:58 an asked them if they would cast us up a bunch of cannon balls at, 3:59 i got a response, "Sure".

Now working through Trey I am going to try to get the mould sent up to me, and send it off to Rotometals. I will have them cast some samples and send them to me for inspection and measurement. This will also allow them to establish a price. Once that is done I will set a buy post for you guys to order direct.

Put the word out as the mould will only be lodged at Rotometals for a short period of time

Any one interested.
 

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DD, I will take about 75 to 100 depending on price. I already have the wooden crates made. Group buys are always great deals on GBO Mortar and Cannon. Let us know that price! Thank you for helping get this done.

Tracy
 

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O.K., got it. Thanks again. I know two people who have small Coehorn Mortars made by South Bend Replicas in that size. RocklockI is one of them. I will let them know that soon they can order some proper cannonballs from Rotometals.

Tracy
 

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Discussion Starter #12
The largest measurement along the seam is 2.184". The 2.190" measurement is the most I could get as I rolled the ball in the caliper.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
The cannonball mold arrived this morning. It was AWOL within the USPS system for a week, but finally surfaced and arrived in perfect shape. I deal with logistics daily and know well the challenge of getting something delivered on time these days. Cannonball molds would not fall in to the category of easily replaced if lost. Very thankful USPS was just running late on the delivery.

The first cannonball mold I believe I've ever seen is the one for 2 1/8th" balls Double D posted not long ago so it was fun to actually get my hands on one.

TRULY appreciate Bob and Jerry for their willingness to loan their mold out.

I'll let Double D coordinate the connection to Rotometals and whatever the process is to place orders.



247809


247810
 

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That should work great! Here are mine. They cast a real nice 2.92" ball. Take the vice grips off and the mold just falls open. The ball will tip right out with no effort.

Zulu



 

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I have a Dixie Gun Works CB0601 2/3 scale field cannon that I bought in 2017 and still have not fired it or made the carriage for it. I have accumulated a pair of large steel wheels, as well as an oak beam for the axle. It's a 2.25" bore, so I should probably get a few of these balls
 

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What I am going to do is send the mould off to Rotometals and have them hold the mould for a set period of time. During that time anyone can place their order direct with Rotometals for balls. At the end of the time period Rotometals will return the mould to me and I will return it to the owner.

Everything is pending right now on this as I have to get Rotometals and the Owner to agree on everything.

There will only be a small window for this, if both parties agree, so you will have to jump on it. I'll post it on the board when everything is together.
 

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I would think Rotometals would crank out a supply of them for stock, while they have the mould, unless the owner doesn't want his mold used for that. I don't know if a mould has a "life" or not.
 

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Why crank out a bunch for stock and have to store them until orders come in 4 or 5 times a year and try guess how many you need to stock.. warehouse and inventory cost money and metal prices fluctuate. Better to have a mould on hand and cast up what's needed when needed and seel at the spot price.
 
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