Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Deadly Blunderbuss, The Thunder Riffle

Army and Weapons | Deadly Blunderbuss, The Thunder Riffle  | The blunderbuss is a muzzle-loading firearm with a short, large caliber barrel, which is often flared at the muzzle and around the bore, and used with shot projectiles and other relevant quantities and / or caliber. The blunderbuss could be considered an early form of shotgun, which was often adapted to military and defensive use. The term dragon was used to form a blunderbuss in hand weapon to describe, and it is here that the term dragoon evolved.

The term "blunderbuss" of Dutch origin, from the Dutch word blunderbuss, which is a combination of Thunder, which means "thunder", and bus, meaning "pipe" (Middle Dutch: Busse, box, tube, the Late Latin, buxis, box).
The transition from Thurs to blunder is thought by some to deliberate, the term blunder was originally used in a transitive sense, synonymous with confusing, and it is thought that the stunningly loud report of the large bore, short loops blunderbuss to describe. The term dragon has taken from the fact that the first versions were decorated with carvings in the shape of the head of a mythical dragon around the muzzle, the muzzle blast would give the impression of a fire-breathing dragon.
The blunderbuss would be considered an early shotgun, and served in similar roles. While several old accounts often list the blunderbuss and loaded with various scrap, stone, or wood could result in damage to the bore of the gun, it was usually loaded with a number of lead balls is smaller than the bore diameter. Drums can be made of steel or brass.
The muzzle (and often boring) had flared up with the intention not only to prevent the spread of the shot increased, but powder and shot hopper into the gun, making it easier to reload on horseback or on a moving carriage, but modern experiments have shown that the flared muzzle no noticeable effect on the recording spread. The flared muzzle is the defining characteristic of the blunderbuss, differentiating from large caliber rifles, the distinction between the blunderbuss and the musk tone is less clear, because musk toons were also used for shot, and some had flared barrels. Thurs Buses were usually very short, with barrels under two feet (60 cm) in length, at a time when a typical musket barrel was more than three meters (90 cm) long. A source, describing arms of the early to mid 17th century, gives the barrel length of a wheel lock dragon is about eleven inches (28 cm), compared with a sixteen inch (41 cm) length of a blunderbuss.
The blunderbuss, and especially the shorter dragon was usually issued to troops, including cavalry, who needed a lightweight, easy to handle firearms. The dragon was so associated with cavalry and infantry mounted dragoon the term became synonymous with mounted infantry. In addition to the cavalry, the blunderbuss found use for other tasks where the shotgun-like qualities were desired, such as for monitoring prisoners or defending a mail coach, and their use for urban combat was also recognized . Thurs Buses were often worn by naval warships, privateers and pirates used in close-quarters boarding actions. The Portuguese sailors used it extensively in the 17th century.
The blunderbuss used by the British postal service during the period of 1788-1816 was a musket with a 14 inch long flared brass barrel, brass trigger guard, and iron and trigger lock. A typical British mail coach could post a single employee on board, armed with a blunderbuss and a pair of pistols in order to monitor mail from highwaymen. A 18th century blunderbuss in another British collection had a copper vessel 17 cm long, flaring to 2 inches at the muzzle, it was also equipped with a spring loaded bayonet, along the course held by a catch and was evident in spring position when released.
While the blunderbuss is often associated with the Plymouth Colony Pilgrims, there are indications that the blunderbuss was relatively scarce in the American colonies. After the Battle of Lexington, the British General Thomas Gage occupied Boston, Massachusetts. After negotiations with the town committee, Gage agreed to leave the city of Boston residents to leave their families and effects, if they are all poor. While most of the inhabitants of Boston remained, those who left under the agreement surrendered 1778 firearms, 634 pistols, 273 bayonets, and only 38 blunderbusses. The blunderbuss still had its civilian applications, however, the Lewis and Clark Expedition carried a number of blunderbusses, some of which were assembled and used as small swivel guns on the pirogues.
By the mid 19th century the blunderbuss considered obsolete. The blunderbuss was replaced in use by the military rifle, although the latter was considered by some as a poor substitute, although the blunderbuss still found use civilians as a defensive firearm. (The rifle used by the British during the Crimean War was criticized in Punch magazine as capable in the hands of a good shot, to "hit a haystack at 80 meters."