Luckily I've stumbled across this sight, there seems to be a vast amount of knowledge here. I've been reading, but there is so much info( much of it - very technical) that I'm not going to have time to sort through it all before I order a cannon. I'm going the economical route to start off, my question is based on cannon strength. I'm going to order a .69 cal old iron side from cannon mania for a little under $200. The barrel is machined from steel, but I have no idea how strong it is, 45-85 grns 1 or 2 fg is what they recomend when shooting a ball. As thick as it looks, I would assume that it could handle full power loads without weekening or maybe slightly higher loads at that. But you know what they say about "assuming" so I figured I would check with the pros before I buy. Any help would be greatly appreciated.