Author Topic: Patched RB's in a smoothbore  (Read 759 times)

Offline Huntschool

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Patched RB's in a smoothbore
« on: November 18, 2018, 12:10:30 AM »
 really don't know where to put this so I though some of the historians here may have something to say about this.

There is a discussion on the "other" board about the reality of someone shooting patched round balls out of smooth bore guns.  While I am sure it was done there are two "pickers of nits" that want some confirmation. 

It seems to me that I remember reading somewhere about folks in an early Rev war battle shooting smooth rifles, which I would assume were firing patched balls for accuracy at distance.

Can anyone site specific information.

Thanks

Mods, if this needs to be moved please do so......  I just want to win this battle
Bruce A. Hering
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Shotgun Team Coach
Southeastern Illinois College
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CLA

Offline Mike Brooks

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Re: Patched RB's in a smoothbore
« Reply #1 on: November 18, 2018, 12:22:12 AM »
Contact James Rogers on this forum, he has documentation on the subject.
NEW WEBSITE! www.mikebrooksflintlocks.com
Say, any of you boys smithies? Or, if not smithies per se, were you otherwise trained in the metallurgic arts before straitened circumstances forced you into a life of aimless wanderin'?

Offline James Rogers

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Re: Patched RB's in a smoothbore
« Reply #2 on: November 18, 2018, 01:06:25 AM »
The 18th century mindset according to what we know was that a patch was used with the intention to impart spin in a rifled barrel.  Smooth rifles may or may not have been used with a patch. They don't intereste so I have never studied it and I can't remember a reference to patches being used in them.

Offline mountainman70

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Re: Patched RB's in a smoothbore
« Reply #3 on: November 18, 2018, 01:36:33 AM »
In the modern day shooting I have done with smoothies, a tight patch does make em shoot more accurate to about 50 yds,maybe more if one worked at it. A good tight fit makes a smooth rifle or other smoothie crack like a rifle. Just my 2 cents,all I got left. Dave 8) 8)

Offline Huntschool

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Re: Patched RB's in a smoothbore
« Reply #4 on: November 18, 2018, 01:48:15 AM »
Thanks all.

Mike:  I sent him a PM....  Thanks
Bruce A. Hering
Program Coordinator/Lead Instructor (retired)
Shotgun Team Coach
Southeastern Illinois College
AMM 761
CLA

Offline Mike Brooks

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Re: Patched RB's in a smoothbore
« Reply #5 on: November 18, 2018, 02:59:59 AM »
Thanks all.

Mike:  I sent him a PM.... Thanks

I didn't get one. ???
NEW WEBSITE! www.mikebrooksflintlocks.com
Say, any of you boys smithies? Or, if not smithies per se, were you otherwise trained in the metallurgic arts before straitened circumstances forced you into a life of aimless wanderin'?

Offline Huntschool

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Re: Patched RB's in a smoothbore
« Reply #6 on: November 18, 2018, 03:02:28 AM »
Thanks all.

Mike:  I sent him a PM.... Thanks

I didn't get one. ???

Sorry man.....  8)
Bruce A. Hering
Program Coordinator/Lead Instructor (retired)
Shotgun Team Coach
Southeastern Illinois College
AMM 761
CLA

Offline James Rogers

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Re: Patched RB's in a smoothbore
« Reply #7 on: November 18, 2018, 03:08:10 AM »
So as far as smooth rifles go...... I think their likeness in appearance to a rifle is how their name occurred,  not how they were loaded. Anyone have any 18th century documentation for patching balls in a smooth rifle or do they remain silent on patching like their other smooth bored cousins??
« Last Edit: November 18, 2018, 03:09:28 AM by James Rogers »

Offline mtlonghunter

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Re: Patched RB's in a smoothbore
« Reply #8 on: November 18, 2018, 03:31:42 AM »
There are a lot of smooth rifles with patch boxes. Did they start life as a smooth bore or reamed out later? I know we haven't invented any thing new about shooting these guns that the old timers didn't already know, so some sort of logic would say they would have used a patched round ball. Most all the trade guns from late 1600s on were smooth bore so I would say a lot of smooth bores were around that would shoot better with a patch. Native Americans recognized better quality guns , why not better accuracy. Not everything we know is documented. Just sayin.

Offline Mike Brooks

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Re: Patched RB's in a smoothbore
« Reply #9 on: November 18, 2018, 05:19:31 PM »
Thanks all.

Mike:  I sent him a PM.... Thanks

I didn't get one. ???

Sorry man.....  8)
Sorry, I read that too fast and didn't see the "him".
 I have had smooth bored guns that shoot exceptionally well with no patch. The forum member Hungry Horse bare balls with large-ish powder charges and claims good accuracy.
NEW WEBSITE! www.mikebrooksflintlocks.com
Say, any of you boys smithies? Or, if not smithies per se, were you otherwise trained in the metallurgic arts before straitened circumstances forced you into a life of aimless wanderin'?

Offline Hungry Horse

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Re: Patched RB's in a smoothbore
« Reply #10 on: November 18, 2018, 05:46:09 PM »
Yes, Iím the culprit, that shoots bare balls in my smoothbores. Since most combat during the Revolutionary War was an up close and personal affair, it came down to acceptable accuracy, and rate of fire. A patched ball in a smoothbore could give you the accuracy, but the rate of fire was far from acceptable. Then, there was the part where you had to swab the bore after a very few shots due to the large amount of fowlings preventing further loading. None of this is acceptable when the enemy is shooting at you. The fix is an undersized ball ( around fifteen to twenty thousandths undersized) dropped right on top of a stiff powder charge ( 80 to 100 grains) of 2F with some sort of greased wadding on top. Acceptable accuracy, loading speed, no swabbing, lighter recoil, and far less breech pressure ( remember many of these guns had a very short breech plug). It only makes sense that this is what was used.

  Hungry Horse

Offline Pukka Bundook

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Re: Patched RB's in a smoothbore
« Reply #11 on: November 18, 2018, 06:26:13 PM »
Gents,

I attached this quotation on the "other channel" re first hand accounts of using a patch in a smoothbore.
(From Col Geo. Hanger's book "To all Sportsmen"  (1814.)

"Shooting Back.
 I have heard that sportsmen have had their dogs shot.
 There is a very heavy penalty for shooting a qualified man's dog.
 But I swear, by Heaven, that however heavy the penalty may be, that would not satisfy me;
 For that I would instantly shoot his horse, and stand prepared with the other barrel to defend my own person;
 and I always go prepared with a few bullets sewn up in greased linen; a ball is quickly rammed down; and a patched, greased
 ball will shoot pretty near as true as a rifle, to a distance of seventy or eighty yards, if not a hundred."

 All the best,
 Richard

Offline Hungry Horse

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Re: Patched RB's in a smoothbore
« Reply #12 on: November 18, 2018, 08:54:57 PM »
I donít have an issue with a patched ball in a smoothbore, but I do believe any increase in accuracy is so minuscule as to not be worth the additional effort. The example given of the sportsman sewing a ball up in a linen patch, is I am sure no where near being commonplace, except possibly with the very elite.

  Hungry Horse

Offline Pukka Bundook

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Re: Patched RB's in a smoothbore
« Reply #13 on: November 18, 2018, 11:54:07 PM »
HH,

Loading as the Colonel says above would only work for a very few rounds.
Hanger was a military chap, and believe he kept muskets loaded in his house for himself and servants, and these would likely take the regular paper cartridges.

The point of attaching the quote above was merely to show we are not safe in this field, using the terms "never" or "always".

FWIW,
A good friend in the UK has taken gold in International musket matches, with a lower than normal powder charge and a patched ball.
What he does, and we also, is irrelevant to what Was practiced.
At best, we can come up (hopefully) with a few "Common practices".   

Offline Huntschool

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Re: Patched RB's in a smoothbore
« Reply #14 on: November 19, 2018, 12:26:28 AM »
Just as a comment and in play with my original question.....  There have been a number of posts  regarding "Muskets and Trade Guns/fusil."  Not to distract from the thread or send in a different direction but...

If all this was good then why did our colonial builders produce smooth rifles ?????  I can understand a shot out barrel on a good gun being smoothed but we seem to have had quality arms built as true smooth "rifles."

Seems I remember reading (back when my mind was better then now) of a patriot at one of the early battles being very effective (50 plus yards) on English troops with what was described as a "smooth rifle"

Just askin......
Bruce A. Hering
Program Coordinator/Lead Instructor (retired)
Shotgun Team Coach
Southeastern Illinois College
AMM 761
CLA

Offline James Rogers

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Re: Patched RB's in a smoothbore
« Reply #15 on: November 19, 2018, 01:42:17 AM »
Pukka is right about never and always. There seems to be an exception looming behind every bush. One must decipher the who, what, when and where of things. If that is done carefully, you will seldom see a longhunter with a samurai sword ; )

Offline Huntschool

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Re: Patched RB's in a smoothbore
« Reply #16 on: November 19, 2018, 01:49:23 AM »
Pukka is right about never and always. There seems to be an exception looming behind every bush. One must decipher the who, what, when and where of things. If that is done carefully, you will seldom see a longhunter with a samurai sword ; )

Excellent James, EXCELLENT.....
Bruce A. Hering
Program Coordinator/Lead Instructor (retired)
Shotgun Team Coach
Southeastern Illinois College
AMM 761
CLA