|Project by Eric M. Saperstein||posted 07-11-2009 03:39 AM||3286 views||0 times favorited||14 comments|
My father jumps between fighting the Civil War, the Revolutionary War, and once and a while a skirmish in between. This project provided the basis for his impression of an Artillery Artificer, a 1790 Pack Howitzer designed as a small infantry support weapon that could be broken down and easily transported by mule or donkey.
In our case – it was light enough for my father to push up the ramps into the back of a pickup without a wench or a team of horses. The iron barrel is sleeved down (I objected to this) to make a bang with a little less outlay for powder. I saw no reason not to go all out with a full size bore as the originals would have had a much larger bore. Never the less, the gun does quite well in live fire mode using a small section of pipe cast with lead and/or cement. It also works well with grape shot.
We built the carriage, modified and restored the wheels, and purchased the barrel. The rest of the metal work we did most of it, a few pieces were purchased from blacksmiths.
This piece, and an assortment of other equipment and accouterments we either made ourselves or commissioned from other artisans supports my father’s various impressions and characters for living history demonstrations, role play, lectures, and interactive presentations. It also served to help with college grading, as we did a professor outing live fire day; once word got around that “Eric has a cannon ….” ... for some reason none of them wanted to give me a bad grade. Go figure?
More info on my father’s historic programs including USSS Wyman White, Rev War Rifleman Timothy Murphy, and a variety of other characters: http://www.artisansofthevalley.com/ed_home.html
We’ve built and restored a few cannons, a trench mortar, various rifles, swords, and other weapons as well as carriages, carts, and other equipment.
More on Cannon Restorations: http://www.artisansofthevalley.com/museum_affil2.html in fact you really never know what you’re going to get into once you find yourself involved with military restoration work. Here we are working on an M60-A3 http://www.artisansofthevalley.com/cs_mt_page2.shtml
One day – when I have a large enough game room to put it on display … I figure I’ll build me a full size Napoleon with a shiny brass barrel. I’ll have to do the poker table first though – or Teri (fiance) may turn the gun on me.
-- Eric M. Saperstein, Master Craftsman www.artisansofthevalley.com