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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Fortinbras View Post
    That's sort of what I was asking, I suspect I know even less about Cnut than you do.
    As I say, I have never heard the thesis expounded upon, so my guess is that it has not been widely accepted.
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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post
    Osprey is always a prety good source for detals like that.

    This is recent, covers a lot of ground but does get into some 100 Years War stuff

    http://www.amazon.com/European-Medie.../dp/B008IU9HWG

    These aren't as recent but also useful

    http://www.amazon.com/French-Armies-...+100+years+wAR

    http://www.amazon.com/Cr%C3%A9cy-134...ref=pd_vtp_b_3

    http://www.amazon.com/Poitiers-1356-...ref=pd_vtp_b_4

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    Awesome. Yeah, I've been meaning to get my hands on some Osprey books just for the sick plates, even if I've heard that they get some things hilariously wrong (i.e. stirrups).

    Quote Originally Posted by fusilier View Post
    For early cannon and gunpowder weapons, you may want to look for this book:
    http://www.amazon.com/Weapons-Warfar...ds=Bert+S+Hall

    In it, Hall claims that the artillery at Crecy were probably ribauldequin - like.

    Also, another kind of projectile that I forgot about, were basically big arrows. You can see them in early images of cannons.
    This looks to be exactly what I was looking for, thanks.

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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Xuc Xac View Post
    You have to put it through the vampire and into something big and immovable (like the ground) to hold him in place long enough for you to cut off his head.
    Then burn the remains and bury the ashes at a crossroads.

    I wonder if burying them on a roundabout island would work in modern settings? If it did, then I guess the Magic Roundabout would probably be the equivalent of Fort Knox.

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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    For a more 'traditional' (and also darkly funny) take on the Vampire, you might like this recent Romanian film

    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1117636/

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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Two questions

    1. The Wikipedia article on Agincourt refers to the English moving back a step to "wrong-foot" the French charge. Could anybody explain what this means?

    2. Does anybody have any idea how fast the Viking longships where? More specifically, how long did it take them to get back to sea from Paris (down the Seine)?

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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    I would assume the idea is that at the last moment the English lines stepped back so that the French, who would have been planning on striking springing off their dominant foot, would be forced to take another step and attack springing off their non-dominant foot.
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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Fortinbras View Post
    Two questions

    1. The Wikipedia article on Agincourt refers to the English moving back a step to "wrong-foot" the French charge. Could anybody explain what this means?

    2. Does anybody have any idea how fast the Viking longships where? More specifically, how long did it take them to get back to sea from Paris (down the Seine)?
    Well, the Havhingsten fra Glendalough can, according to what's I've been able to find online, do 15kts under sail and about 4 or 5kts under oars. Of course that's with a crew of modern volunteers rather than Vikings who has spent their entire life rowing, so they might have been a bit faster.



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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Thiel View Post
    Well, the Havhingsten fra Glendalough can, according to what's I've been able to find online, do 15kts under sail and about 4 or 5kts under oars. Of course that's with a crew of modern volunteers rather than Vikings who has spent their entire life rowing, so they might have been a bit faster.
    Not the height of sources here, but I have it on History channel "Mankind" miniseries at 20 knots with the wind and a trained crew. I've heard that number before from other sources.
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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Fortinbras View Post
    1. The Wikipedia article on Agincourt refers to the English moving back a step to "wrong-foot" the French charge. Could anybody explain what this means?
    Two possibilities spring to mind, assuming we're talking about infantry combat.

    One is more or less what Gwyn said: When striking, you will normally take a step to gain reach and momentum. Depending on weapons and technique, one foot is usually better than the other. Stepping back messes up your opponent's attack. This is a common defensive move, but not realistically applicable on large scale.

    Another (more likely) possibility is that the front ranks of the English line performed a controlled, short-distance fall-back. This would be risky, but could really mess up the enemy formation as some would pursue, some would keep the pace and some would hesitate. The charge would hit home out of formation and be vulnerable.

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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    So, in The Princess Bride, Inigo Montoya and the Man in Black duel. Throughout, they refer to various fencing techniques and the works of various fencing masters. Has anyone ever reshot that scene with swordplay that matches the dialogue? Would such a thing be possible?
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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Thiel View Post
    Well, the Havhingsten fra Glendalough can, according to what's I've been able to find online, do 15kts under sail and about 4 or 5kts under oars. Of course that's with a crew of modern volunteers rather than Vikings who has spent their entire life rowing, so they might have been a bit faster.
    Floating down a river, however, I doubt it will be averaging 15 knots. In fact, I doubt they averaged 15 knots in general. A potential place to look for travel times might be the GURPS Vikings book (I don't have that one, but they tend to be full of little details like that).

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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Kalaska'Agathas View Post
    So, in The Princess Bride, Inigo Montoya and the Man in Black duel. Throughout, they refer to various fencing techniques and the works of various fencing masters. Has anyone ever reshot that scene with swordplay that matches the dialogue? Would such a thing be possible?
    You mean those are real techniques and styles they are naming? I honestly thought it was mainly gibberish.
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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by fusilier View Post
    Floating down a river, however, I doubt it will be averaging 15 knots. In fact, I doubt they averaged 15 knots in general. A potential place to look for travel times might be the GURPS Vikings book (I don't have that one, but they tend to be full of little details like that).
    How fast you go will depend a lot on the skill and experience of the crew and how much their route allows them to use the wind. It might give you a good aproximation if you look at the routes, and see if there's a historical analog that might give you an indication of rough travel time.
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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Traab View Post
    You mean those are real techniques and styles they are naming? I honestly thought it was mainly gibberish.
    Yup, real techniques: link.
    As Kalaska'Agathas said, they're not actually using the techniques they name in the dialogue.

    From the article (not sure what Bonetti's defence is), it seems that Wesley is expecting Inigo to attack with Capo Ferro or strong lunges (ie straight linear attacks), which he expects his study of Thibault (logic and geometery based sword defence) to simply get out of the way in an advantagous position.
    However Inigo has studied Agrippa (closing distances and short sword/short swording techniques), which will help him in getting close to Wesley and win the ensuing close ranged tussle.
    Last edited by Brother Oni; 2012-11-22 at 07:29 AM.

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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Kalaska'Agathas View Post
    So, in The Princess Bride, Inigo Montoya and the Man in Black duel. Throughout, they refer to various fencing techniques and the works of various fencing masters. Has anyone ever reshot that scene with swordplay that matches the dialogue? Would such a thing be possible?
    No.

    We should not re-shoot the duel from Princess Bride anymore than we should re-paint the Mona Lisa.

    To suggest otherwise is heresy.
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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike_G View Post
    No.

    We should not re-shoot the duel from Princess Bride anymore than we should re-paint the Mona Lisa.

    To suggest otherwise is heresy.
    Indeed, it would be one of the classic blunders.

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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Grundy View Post
    Indeed, it would be one of the classic blunders.
    But is it above or behind playing a game of chance with a Sicilian when DEATH is on the line?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nerd-o-rama View Post
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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Traab View Post
    But is it above or behind playing a game of chance with a Sicilian when DEATH is on the line?
    It's nearly as bad as rephrasing the opening narration of Star Trek to avoid splitting the infinitive.

    Princess Bride is as close to perfect as any movie I can think of. To tamper with such a thing of beauty over fencing pedantry requires a man with no soul.
    Out of wine comes truth, out of truth the vision clears, and with vision soon appears a grand design. From the grand design we can understand the world. And when you understand the world, you need a lot more wine.


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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Another question.

    Old hand guns, like their bigger cousins, were loaded by charging the barrel, tamping that stuff down, and dropping the ball in, right?

    Exactly how much at risk was the ball of falling out? Could a man in difficult conditions keep his pistol loaded even if it was upside down, or would the ball just up and slip out?

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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Kalmarvho View Post
    Another question.

    Old hand guns, like their bigger cousins, were loaded by charging the barrel, tamping that stuff down, and dropping the ball in, right?

    Exactly how much at risk was the ball of falling out? Could a man in difficult conditions keep his pistol loaded even if it was upside down, or would the ball just up and slip out?
    They would put in what they called wadding into the barrel after the ball specifically to avoid this problem. It grips the walls of the gun just enough to stop gravity from letting the ball fall out, but not enough to significantly obstruct it when it fires. They used pre-made paper packets of gunpowder (called a "cartridge") with a ball included to load their guns quickly and would just stuff the leftover paper into the barrel to serve as wadding.

    As for how secure the ball would be in there if you for some reason didn't use wadding, I dunno, though I imagine rifled barrels would be significantly safer: Before the invention of breechloading you had to actually hammer the ball in with a mallet, just a simple ramrod wasn't enough. This is why rifling didn't catch on until several centuries after its discovery.

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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    I have a speculative question about sword design:

    While hardly seen in later historical examples (I think there are Bronze/Iron Age shortswords) fantasy weapons often show a design usually referred to as "leafblade", i.e. a symmetrical blade which is thinner at the middle and broader towards the tip before converging in a point again.

    I'd be interested to know what implications for the handling of a weapon this design would have if applied to a long sword (bastard sword if you will), if one disregards the obvious consequence of becoming more top-heavy (lets imagine this being compounded by a heavier pommel or something similar and ignore the increased weight for the purpose of this excercise).

    What I could imagine happening is the weapon inflicting deeper wounds because of the curvature but having less penetrating power in thrusts, since the point will be broader. Does that make sense?
    Maybe the stability of the blade would be compromised, since the parrying area is less broad? Could one increase the thickness to compensate?
    What would be the influence on halfswording and winding?

    In short: What happens if one adds curvature to the long sword's blade without taking away its symmetry (for false edge cuts) and balance?
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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike_G View Post
    We should not re-shoot the duel from Princess Bride anymore than we should re-paint the Mona Lisa.
    How about a fan re-shoot, like that fan remake of Raiders of the Lost Ark, or the internet splice togethers of the first two Star Wars movies?

    Quote Originally Posted by Traab View Post
    But is it above or behind playing a game of chance with a Sicilian when DEATH is on the line?
    Probably above that, but below the land war in Asia.

    Quote Originally Posted by Craft (Cheese) View Post
    They used pre-made paper packets of gunpowder (called a "cartridge") with a ball included to load their guns quickly and would just stuff the leftover paper into the barrel to serve as wadding.
    I believe before the introduction of pre-measured paper cartridges, they just took care not to let the barrel droop and hence the ball rolling out (you can guess how well that went).

    I'm not sure how accurate it was, but I remember an episode of Sharpe where they were drilling new recruits in the firing drill and the sergeant at arms was shouting out the commands, along with various 'reminders' about not what to do (like forgetting to remove the ramrod before firing).

    Quote Originally Posted by Craft (Cheese) View Post
    As for how secure the ball would be in there if you for some reason didn't use wadding, I dunno, though I imagine rifled barrels would be significantly safer: Before the invention of breechloading you had to actually hammer the ball in with a mallet, just a simple ramrod wasn't enough. This is why rifling didn't catch on until several centuries after its discovery.
    Depends on the size of the ball. For ease and speed of loading, undersized balls were popular but they could possibly roll out of the barrel if you weren't careful (the use of which also contributed to the notoriously poor accuracy that smoothbores have).

    I would think a properly fitting ball that required a ramrod to get in, would be pretty much safe from falling out without deliberate effort to get it out and probably wouldn't need wadding to stay in place (the gunpowder is a different issue).
    Last edited by Brother Oni; 2012-11-22 at 08:43 PM.

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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Brother Oni View Post
    How about a fan re-shoot, like that fan remake of Raiders of the Lost Ark, or the internet splice togethers of the first two Star Wars movies?
    That's basically what I was thinking - not a reshoot with the intent to replace the scene, as that would certainly be one of the classic blunders, but rather showing what such a duel would look like. It could serve as a companion to the original, meant as an educational piece.
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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Partysan View Post
    In short: What happens if one adds curvature to the long sword's blade without taking away its symmetry (for false edge cuts) and balance?
    Not much, assuming it is balanced for fighting. As you suggest, it might be better for cutting/chopping than a conventional straight taper and less suited to the thrust, but to what degree? It is unlikely to be worth measuring for D&D/D20 type game purposes.
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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike_G View Post
    No.

    We should not re-shoot the duel from Princess Bride anymore than we should re-paint the Mona Lisa.

    To suggest otherwise is heresy.
    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew View Post
    Not much, assuming it is balanced for fighting. As you suggest, it might be better for cutting/chopping than a conventional straight taper and less suited to the thrust, but to what degree? It is unlikely to be worth measuring for D&D/D20 type game purposes.
    True. Consider if you made an axe with a metal haft (sharp or not). That's basically a super exaggerated version of your leaf bladed sword. And now consider the mechanical differences between a long sword and a battle axe in dnd.

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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew View Post
    Not much, assuming it is balanced for fighting. As you suggest, it might be better for cutting/chopping than a conventional straight taper and less suited to the thrust, but to what degree? It is unlikely to be worth measuring for D&D/D20 type game purposes.
    Quote Originally Posted by Grundy View Post
    True. Consider if you made an axe with a metal haft (sharp or not). That's basically a super exaggerated version of your leaf bladed sword. And now consider the mechanical differences between a long sword and a battle axe in dnd.
    True, but I'm not asking for D&D purposes (D&D actually has a weapon somewhat like that, the Jovar in the Planar Handbook). I wanted to know about the actual handling of weapons which is why I came to this thread where some people post who are more knowledgeable and trained than I am.

    (Another detail question: would this affect the ability to draw cut?)
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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Partysan View Post

    I'd be interested to know what implications for the handling of a weapon this design would have if applied to a long sword (bastard sword if you will), if one disregards the obvious consequence of becoming more top-heavy (lets imagine this being compounded by a heavier pommel or something similar and ignore the increased weight for the purpose of this excercise).

    What I could imagine happening is the weapon inflicting deeper wounds because of the curvature but having less penetrating power in thrusts, since the point will be broader. Does that make sense?
    Maybe the stability of the blade would be compromised, since the parrying area is less broad? Could one increase the thickness to compensate?
    What would be the influence on halfswording and winding?

    In short: What happens if one adds curvature to the long sword's blade without taking away its symmetry (for false edge cuts) and balance?
    Wounds inflicted by cutting could be deeper, but mainly due to more width at striking area, don't think that this slight curvature would change all that much in impact mechanics.

    Overall characteristics depend on 'details' very much, so it's really hard to answer - there is 'leaf' shape, but then there's also overall crossection - thickness at different parts, angles of cross-section and so on.

    So it doesn't really have to become "top heavy" either, if broadened part is also proportionally thinner, for example.
    Last edited by Spiryt; 2012-11-23 at 09:01 AM.
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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Brother Oni View Post
    I believe before the introduction of pre-measured paper cartridges, they just took care not to let the barrel droop and hence the ball rolling out (you can guess how well that went).
    If the paper cartridge contained both ball and powder, then the paper would serve as wadding to hold the ball in place.

    I've read of instances of troops sometimes shoving grass down the barrels to serve as wadding to hold bullets in place (I think in the context of the English Civil War). Others carried bits of paper, or tow, etc., to serve as wadding. If defending high-ground, it may be necessary to depress the barrel and you don't want the bullet simply rolling out.


    Quote Originally Posted by Brother Oni View Post
    Depends on the size of the ball. For ease and speed of loading, undersized balls were popular but they could possibly roll out of the barrel if you weren't careful (the use of which also contributed to the notoriously poor accuracy that smoothbores have).

    I would think a properly fitting ball that required a ramrod to get in, would be pretty much safe from falling out without deliberate effort to get it out and probably wouldn't need wadding to stay in place (the gunpowder is a different issue).
    Until the introduction of paper cartridges, this seems to have been generally true. The use of a tight fitting ball wouldn't require the use of wadding to hold it in place. Ideally, loose fitting balls would be used when rapidity of fire was desirable (the ramrod not even being employed), at which point fear of the bullet dropping out during transport was irrelevant.

    As for a pistol: these weapons were loaded before combat and usually used once during a battle. So reloading them on the battlefield under stressful conditions wasn't necessary. They were also carried muzzle down, so the use of a tight ball and wadding was not only a good idea, it was also easy to do.

    Using a mallet to ram down a rifle ball was not too common. It did occur, and the tige (?) breech design I think required it, but for the most part the ramrod itself sufficed for loading tight fitting bullets.

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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Spiryt View Post
    Overall characteristics depend on 'details' very much, so it's really hard to answer - there is 'leaf' shape, but then there's also overall crossection - thickness at different parts, angles of cross-section and so on.

    So it doesn't really have to become "top heavy" either, if broadened part is also proportionally thinner, for example.
    I agree with Spiryt. Historically we have falchions of near hand-and-a-half size which are shaped similarly, somewhat narrow at the forte and broad at the business end, from relatively subtle examples like this



    ... to really exaggerated examples like this



    Now if you imagine this as having double edges you are pretty close to what you are positing. We used to think falchions were big and heavy and crude (which is kind of how they look) but have since learned, from examining antiques, that the blades are very thin toward that business end.

    The width does contribute to better percussive cutting (as opposed to draw cutting). This is the same principle as a meat cleaver. The curve might also contribute to better slicing or draw-cutting.

    So in terms of pure mass, the blade on a leaf-blade may not be actually very heavy. I've seen some real (Bronze) ones recently at the Higgins armoury and they were quite small and thin overall.

    But I do think that the general design of these was designed specifically for use with a shield and / or to cut from horseback, not as much for 'fencing' as a decisive cut.

    It's also probably not really necessary - blades which taper seem in some cases to cut very well. Albions famous Brescia Spadona, a millimeter by millimeter copy of a 15th Century original in Italy, is one of the best cutting sword replicas around of any type. This again, was a surprise to a lot of historians and fencing enthusiasts; the conventional wisdom as recently as 10 years ago was that the 'pointy' swords were basically for thrusting. Test cutting shows us that a blade like the Brescia could easily dismantle a person in very short order indeed.

    So there may simply never have been a reason to make the blade flare out like that on a two-handed sword. The actual reason to have a tapering or strait rather than 'leaf shaped' blade may have in fact been more to do with how the sword performs in terms of fencing, i.e. parrying, countering, binding and so on, than how it cuts.

    That said, I think there are some iron / steel examples of leaf blade shaped swords, some of the Spartan Xiphos swords were made in iron, and also some much later Medieval swords in Lithuania and Estonia which were somewhat 'leaf' shaped, though they are single-handed swords probably meant to be used with a shield. Some also had 'antenna' hilts too which is interesting. You can see a few here though I'm not sure if you can see any with the leaf blade shape

    http://www.myarmoury.com/talk/viewto...r=asc&start=20

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    Last edited by Galloglaich; 2012-11-23 at 05:35 PM.
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    Default Re: Got a Real World Weapons or Armour Question? Mk XI

    Quote Originally Posted by fusilier View Post
    Using a mallet to ram down a rifle ball was not too common. It did occur, and the tige (?) breech design I think required it, but for the most part the ramrod itself sufficed for loading tight fitting bullets.
    I believe most balls were lead, so would deform quite easily to get into the barrel. Would you know if any other metals were trialled or used, or was lead the default go to?

    Looking up some videos, (link), it seems to indicate that the entire cartridge would have been rammed down the barrel, with the ball enclosed inside the paper, rather than the gunpowder, wadding and ball being put in separately.

    Judging from older depictions of loading muskets using a powder horn with separate wadding and ball, I can see why this innovation was such a landmark.

    I do remember that even with the paper cartridges, rifled barrels made loading tight fitting balls slower - during the Napoleonic era, the standard ROF by line infantry using the Brown Bess musket was ~4 shots/minute, while the Baker rifle usually only managed 1 or 2 (and not just because they took the effort to aim).
    Last edited by Brother Oni; 2012-11-24 at 07:26 AM.

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