Author Topic: Firing Blanks  (Read 5148 times)

Jefferson58

  • Guest
Firing Blanks
« on: May 12, 2010, 05:53:10 PM »
Hi Folks:

Okay, you guys can laugh all you want, but here goes... I am going to be participating in a historical reenactment next month. Having never done this while actually firing blanks, I am wondering what the "proper" method of blank firing is? My concerns are obviously with safety and doing it correctly for the event.

This may be the wrong section to ask this question, but it does concern "shooting," if firing blanks can be considered shooting!

If it matters, I will be using my .40 caliber Southern rifle and pistol. Any help will be greatly appreciated.

Jeff

Offline Roger Fisher

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6805
Re: Firing Blanks
« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2010, 06:13:39 PM »
Not laughing!!!!     You will be cleaning the bore for a week!!!

Hide your balls 'er ah leave your balls at home Ah $#*! you know what I mean.

Don't want to hear that a guy got excited and loaded charge AND BALL!! ::)

Offline 490roundball

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 377
Re: Firing Blanks
« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2010, 06:20:34 PM »
I would recommend you go through the drill with an experienced member of your unit.

safety wise -

roll some paper cartridges (tubes twisted or folded to keep the premeasured powder in) - keep the powder volume down, I always found 70 grains plenty for a .50,  the crack of a rifle get attention in the line if you overload

Empty your bag of balls ahead of time, nothing but powder goes down the barrel, not even the paper, leave the ramrod alone.

elevate a little!!!  don't shoot at the other line.  And find out the limit to how close the lines may get.

for a new reenactor - the big thing is to ask the unit leader, have them show you the ropes and speak up if you have questions.  Its a lot of fun, and safe if you use common sense

"It's a poor word that can't be spelt two ways" Tom Yeardley in Swanson's Silent Drum

Offline bluenoser

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 722
Re: Firing Blanks
« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2010, 07:54:09 PM »
Rick pretty much nailed it.  I have never fired blanks in my rifle - just the bess & tulle.  I would just like to reiterate two points.  NEVER anything but powder in the bbl and ALWAYS hold high.

Laurie

Offline Mad Monk

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1033
Re: Firing Blanks
« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2010, 09:04:16 PM »
A bit of basics here.

Compared to a shot with a projectile.
A blank charge will:
Produce greater amounts of powder residue in the bore.
A blank charge transfers greater amounts of heat to the bore walls.

So when firing blank charges the chance of a "cook off" charge is greater than when firing "shotted charges".  You have a lot of hot powder residue in the bore and the bore walls get hotter quicker.  When you drop a powder charge down the bore you must be sure that the muzzle is not pointed at or close to your face nor anyone else who might be aside of you.

With my .45 caliber flinter in Rev War use.  If I did rapid fire with blank charges I was almost assured that the 6th or 7th round loaded would auto-ignite when I poured the charge down the bore.

Bill K.

ottawa

  • Guest
Re: Firing Blanks
« Reply #5 on: May 13, 2010, 04:05:49 AM »
also if you don't have one already a flash guard and a frizz en cover (can't remember the name of the cover)lock stall I think? and be carfull of that hot barrel it will burn you!!!

Offline 490roundball

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 377
Re: Firing Blanks
« Reply #6 on: May 13, 2010, 04:37:50 AM »
also if you don't have one already a flash guard and a frizz en cover (can't remember the name of the cover)lock stall I think? and be carfull of that hot barrel it will burn you!!!
its a Hammer stall - close enough
"It's a poor word that can't be spelt two ways" Tom Yeardley in Swanson's Silent Drum

Offline Dphariss

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 9697
  • Kill a Commie for your Mommy
Re: Firing Blanks
« Reply #7 on: May 14, 2010, 05:18:39 PM »
Hi Folks:

Okay, you guys can laugh all you want, but here goes... I am going to be participating in a historical reenactment next month. Having never done this while actually firing blanks, I am wondering what the "proper" method of blank firing is? My concerns are obviously with safety and doing it correctly for the event.

This may be the wrong section to ask this question, but it does concern "shooting," if firing blanks can be considered shooting!

If it matters, I will be using my .40 caliber Southern rifle and pistol. Any help will be greatly appreciated.

Jeff


Like Monk said.
I would prefer to watch such things from a distance than participate.
But I get in trouble when I expound on battle re-enactment so I will close off.

Having auto ignitions is not something I want to see close up.

Dan
He who dares not offend cannot be honest. Thomas Paine

Mike R

  • Guest
Re: Firing Blanks
« Reply #8 on: May 14, 2010, 09:37:55 PM »
Is your poorboy flint or percussion?  The previous guys nailed it on all points, I think. Most of the reeanctments I have gone to are Civil War [perc guns], and I have never noticed cook-offs, however they could happen.  'Rapid fire' is  a relative thing I guess. I also do some 18th cent living history where we demo shooting with blanks. The thing that always bothered me about the techniques practiced with paper cartridges is priming from the same paper tube you load with--and doing it before pouring in main charge. [with perc guns you cap it after pouring main charge]  Like Mad Monk &Dan said, be careful and keep the muzzle away from you and your neighbors. Some reenactments make folks remove the ramrods and leave them at camp so as not to have any accidents, but in any event, do not use it [as was said]. Pour and tap the sides of the gun to settle the powder. It does not need wadding or tamping to go BOOM. The CW guys typically use 70 gr fffg for their .58 muskets [most use that in their 20 bore 18th cent guns too]. I tried 50 grs and it did not sound right--but with a smaller bore it woiuld be OK.  
« Last Edit: May 14, 2010, 09:39:28 PM by Mike R »

Jefferson58

  • Guest
Re: Firing Blanks
« Reply #9 on: May 15, 2010, 12:15:55 AM »
Thanks folks, I appreciate the good information.

My gun is flint to answer the question. I may just stay out of this fracas, if possible. Cleaning up all that fowling is not something I particularly look forward to when I am working the show at the same time.

Thanks again,

Jeff