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Discussion Starter #1
Hey everyone!

I was at a cowboy shoot this weekend. For entertainment a Pard fired his canon that he had built. Boy it was fun to watch. The pard was trying to hit a 55 gallon drum at 300 yrds. He came close but did not hit it. I think he said it was a 1 1/2 bore and a 22" barrel

After the first shot my daughter looked at me and said "Dad, we need a canon". I was thinking the same thing Smart girl :grin: Besided how many kids can say their Dad has a canon :lol:

So I have been searching the web looking for information. Found Canon-mania. They had a number of canons. Their 1" bore BP canon is interesting But I have no idea what to look for.

I have seen canons that shoot golf balls. That sounds like fun (cheap ammo)

I have shot black powder for 5 years not in my cowboy guns and my 45-70 so I am familar with using BP.

So I could use some advice for a canon novice. What is the best way to get into this fun.

Thanks for the advice,

North Nick
 

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If you aren't a machinist, prepare to open your wallet wide. If you are a machinist (or have one who owes you favors), plans are available.

There are three basic types of artillery: mortars, howitzers and cannon (also called guns.) Mortars have a high angle trajectory, usually 45 degrees or more, and very short barrels; howitzers have a medium angle trajectory and medium length barrels; and cannon have an almost horizontal trajectory and long barrels.

It helps to decide what era you are interested in (e.g., Revolutionary War, Civil War, Indian Wars, etc.) Indian Wars might fit in with cowboy shooting. The mountain howitzer was the mainstay of Indian Wars artillery fighting.

Scale is a major cost determining factor, exponential almost. Full scale pieces are the most expensive and the most impressive, smaller scale less so in proportion. Full scale generally requires several people to maneuver and trailers to move. I would not recommend full scale for a beginner.

Stay away from anything made from ordinary pipe. Pipe is an accident waiting to happen.

Do some research and ask more questions. We're here to help although you will have to make style decisions for yourself.
 

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NN -

George gave you a good overview. Let me add that mortars are a little cheaper and a good place to start.

You've already got one of my two prime considerations down - caliber - and the availability of ammo. Consider also beer-can caliber.

The second prime consideration is range. If you're out in the Western planes or near the ocean shoot as far as you want to. If you're like the rest of us, 100 yards is a very good range, as you can SEE what you're going to hit (or miss) and you KNOW where the round is going. It's too much of a tempatation to put one over the mountain in the National Forrest if you have a 1500 meter range mortar on a 100 yard range. (Forgive me for I have sinned.)

A third of many coniderations is how you're going to haul the piece around. A heavy golf ball caliber mortar will weigh in about 30 pounds. My 4.55" will weigh 103 pounds for the trunion and tube. (Second hernia operation maybe later this year.) When you come back from shooting, hosing it off outside is a good way to clean up.

Another consideration is who you shoot with. If you get into period stuff, full scale is IT. Otherwise, forget looks except for safety and legality.

(You might want to browse through the FAQ's that DD has as a Sticky above.)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks!

Thanks for the advice. I will do some more searching.

I am thinking 1/2 scale as I have pickup to haul it around in.

If I were to buy a canon are there places on the web that you recommend?

Any thing I should avoid (other than pipe)?

Thanks,

Nick
 

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