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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Haighus View Post
    I reckon the tungsten would be best in the core, like how bronze was used in the core of mace heads. Steel would still be better for the flanges/points, as it would be more durable, but you still have the density of the tungsten in the impact.
    I thought tungsten would be a good penetrating tip due to its extreme density and hardness. But maybe it would be too brittle for battlefield use.

    I know we use it as a kinetic penetrator in modern weapons but I believe very high speed collisions work more like an explosive than a bullet and by increasing density, you get a bigger explosion for your projectile size.

    So it may not be particularly great at punching through steel at the kind of speeds you get by swinging a polearm.

    Quote Originally Posted by Haighus View Post
    I reckon the only (currently known) material that has the potential to supplant steel in many of these roles is carbon materials specifically crafted with the optimum nano-structure? They may make better armour once people can produce them easily in the ways they want to, with accurate nano structures.
    Yeah probably. I would like to see some of the structures that cheap nano-carbon could build. Mainly space elevators.
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Beer View Post
    I thought tungsten would be a good penetrating tip due to its extreme density and hardness. But maybe it would be too brittle for battlefield use.
    Nothing wrong with tungsten for military purposes, it's been used as armor-piercing ammunition since WW2, both for AP and APDS (armor piercing discarding sabot) and various similar types. I think the US switched to depleted uranium for a while in Iraq, not sure what they are using now.
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    The requirements are different though. The tungsten used in kinetic penetrators is for one use only, and the tungsten is destroyed in the process. A mace needs to be able to collide with targets all day and not shatter or deform. I still think a tungsten core with steel flanges would be more useful than a pure tungsten mace.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post
    Nothing wrong with tungsten for military purposes, it's been used as armor-piercing ammunition since WW2, both for AP and APDS (armor piercing discarding sabot) and various similar types. I think the US switched to depleted uranium for a while in Iraq, not sure what they are using now.
    Still DU, it has some rather different properties (pyrophoric, and self-sharpens by fracture instead of deforming during impact, for example).
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Haighus View Post
    The requirements are different though. The tungsten used in kinetic penetrators is for one use only, and the tungsten is destroyed in the process. A mace needs to be able to collide with targets all day and not shatter or deform. I still think a tungsten core with steel flanges would be more useful than a pure tungsten mace.
    I think depth of penetration of a projectile depends on density only (Isaac Newton made an algorithm to calculate that...); the projectile itself may disintegrate or not depending on its resilience, and excess energy from high speed is dispersed as heat and kinetic waves that damage the target...

    So a high density projectile has more chances to punch through armor, even is it disintegrates into tiny chunks while doing so...

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Clistenes View Post
    I think depth of penetration of a projectile depends on density only (Isaac Newton made an algorithm to calculate that...); the projectile itself may disintegrate or not depending on its resilience, and excess energy from high speed is dispersed as heat and kinetic waves that damage the target...

    So a high density projectile has more chances to punch through armor, even is it disintegrates into tiny chunks while doing so...
    Yes, but this is only useful for a one shot projectile. Anyone whose mace becomes useless after a couple of bashes has no mace anymore. It is the same as having a very hard sword- it is able to cut really well, but it is too fragile, so people used ones that are more springy.

  7. - Top - End - #127
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Corundum data source: http://www.matweb.com/search/datashe...fb537f1&ckck=1

    The stuff i found on aluminium fracture stress: http://beyond-steel.com/product/

    S355 steel, (the supposed closest to medieval quality stuff): http://www.matweb.com/search/DataShe...02f641ff2ae644

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    I think corundum could be potentially useful as a limited use armour, much like modern ceramic armours on AFVs or the ceramic plates on body armour. It would be very effective at dispersing the energy from a single hit that defeats it as all the energy would be re-directed into shattering it, rather than it carrying through into the person.

    The only issues are that after that single hit, you now have a gap in your armour where that corundum plate was, or worse, a hit that causes the plate to fracture but not shatter, so a second hit on the damaged plate ploughs straight through.

    In my opinion, it would be great for very short duration encounters (assassinations/ambushes and the like), not so good if you're spending all day on the battlefield slugging it out on the front lines.
    Last edited by Brother Oni; 2018-01-29 at 07:53 AM.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Haighus View Post
    Yes, but this is only useful for a one shot projectile. Anyone whose mace becomes useless after a couple of bashes has no mace anymore. It is the same as having a very hard sword- it is able to cut really well, but it is too fragile, so people used ones that are more springy.
    I was speaking of why tungsten was used for anti-tank projectiles, not of a theorical mace made of tungsten...

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Carl View Post
    Corundum data source: http://www.matweb.com/search/datashe...fb537f1&ckck=1

    The stuff i found on aluminium fracture stress: http://beyond-steel.com/product/

    S355 steel, (the supposed closest to medieval quality stuff): http://www.matweb.com/search/DataShe...02f641ff2ae644
    Huh. I tried matweb, but I didn't see the data you mentioned... guess we know who failed his spot check, huh?

    Quote Originally Posted by Brother Oni View Post
    I think corundum could be potentially useful as a limited use armour, much like modern ceramic armours on AFVs or the ceramic plates on body armour. It would be very effective at dispersing the energy from a single hit that defeats it as all the energy would be re-directed into shattering it, rather than it carrying through into the person.

    The only issues are that after that single hit, you now have a gap in your armour where that corundum plate was, or worse, a hit that causes the plate to fracture but not shatter, so a second hit on the damaged plate ploughs straight through.

    In my opinion, it would be great for very short duration encounters (assassinations/ambushes and the like), not so good if you're spending all day on the battlefield slugging it out on the front lines.
    Combined with the light weight of the armor itself (half the density of steel), that might make it good-ish armor for skirmishers and such, yeah? Mechanically speaking, I mean... I'm sure it's pretty hard to sneak up on someone while wearing a highly visible ruby.
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Ironsmith View Post
    Combined with the light weight of the armor itself (half the density of steel), that might make it good-ish armor for skirmishers and such, yeah? Mechanically speaking, I mean... I'm sure it's pretty hard to sneak up on someone while wearing a highly visible ruby.
    It’s actually sounding more and more like a specialty armor marketed to an obscenely decadent upper class as anti-assassination chic.

    “Yes, I was just hearing about it. It’s a new technique, they call it ‘ablative armor.’ It’s the latest fashion.”

    “That sounds perfect, my darling. Jenkins! Send my sizes to the armorer.”

    “It gets better, dearest.”

    “Oh?”

    “The armor is made entirely from precious gems. And it works perfectly just once, then you have to throw it away.”

    “*swoon*”

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    All of these materials with a mix of good and bad properties really sound like they could be effective if we alloyed them with iron, and maybe each other, in small quantities. Hm, I wonder why no one ever thought of that before ...

    Seriously, though, steel is the wonder metal at least in part because the word is ambiguous by definition. "Iron and other stuff" is a pretty good response to this kind of materials science question.

    The other thing to bear in mind is that a lot of your tungstens and iridiums are phenomenally expensive and/or heavy. It's generally more efficient to alloy small quantities of these and derive significant benefits at minimal cost. Others, like molybdenum or titanium, really don't show their utility until they're alloyed in the first place.

    The answer is steel, whatever that even means.
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Clistenes View Post
    I was speaking of why tungsten was used for anti-tank projectiles, not of a theorical mace made of tungsten...
    Ah, apologies, I thought you were referring to tungsten in the context of modern materials for medieval weaponry, which is what spawned the tungsten discussion.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    I wonder if anyone can tell me anything about the Mangual, or Iberian flail, which looks similar to the Czech Flegel. Who used it (what kind of troops or estates), how common was it, was it known in any battles?

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/9801567...57634584454532

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/9801567...57634584454532

    G
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Ironsmith View Post
    Combined with the light weight of the armor itself (half the density of steel), that might make it good-ish armor for skirmishers and such, yeah? Mechanically speaking, I mean... I'm sure it's pretty hard to sneak up on someone while wearing a highly visible ruby.
    I wouldn't use density as the sole measurement for comparison as armour durability is highly dependent on the material's molecular structure and properties. An armour plate of good quality steel ranges from 1-2mm thickness; I doubt a similar thickness ruby sheet would be as effective, so would have to be thicker to obtain the same protective capabilities.

    Unfortunately, I'm not that well versed in materials science, so I couldn't tell you how thick a ruby plate you'd need to have the same energy dispersing capability as a similar area sheet of 2 mm good quality steel.

    I do like Lapak's suggestion of it being used as 'bling' armour, particularly when there's historical precedent for the concept:

    Spoiler: Henry VIII's jousting armour
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    Spoiler: Ornate armour from Musée de l'Armée (Monceau)
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Haighus View Post
    Yes, but this is only useful for a one shot projectile. Anyone whose mace becomes useless after a couple of bashes has no mace anymore. It is the same as having a very hard sword- it is able to cut really well, but it is too fragile, so people used ones that are more springy.
    Oh, come on! Are you seriously telling me that if you put "Exploding Mace" on the price list for your RPG, the PCs wouldn't be lining up to buy out the local stockpiles?

    DrewID

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Ironsmith View Post
    Huh. I tried matweb, but I didn't see the data you mentioned... guess we know who failed his spot check, huh?



    Combined with the light weight of the armor itself (half the density of steel), that might make it good-ish armor for skirmishers and such, yeah? Mechanically speaking, I mean... I'm sure it's pretty hard to sneak up on someone while wearing a highly visible ruby.

    I got it via a direct link to the page from google search, the built in search function is terrible.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    In the middle ages they used to use (I think cast) iron bullets for armor-piercing ammunition in firearms going back to the 1300's.

    So it seems to me that tungsten ammunition might be appreciated. Both for firearms bullets and for 'cannister' type shot for cannons.

    Conversely, ceramic or even beryl armor as a kind of one-off defense against powerful firearms, muskets etc., maybe for some kind of elite one-time use like a hit-squad is a kind of interesting idea. I mean, it's used today. Could find a niche. Seems like it would be extra vulnerable to a lot of hand weapons for example, hammers and maces. Probably axes, maybe swords and spears too.

    And I think in thicknesses being worth use- it would be heavier and bulkier than armor people were used to. However anywhere that high energy muskets are a threat anything that can save you might be appreciated.

    G
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by DrewID View Post
    Oh, come on! Are you seriously telling me that if you put "Exploding Mace" on the price list for your RPG, the PCs wouldn't be lining up to buy out the local stockpiles?

    DrewID


    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post
    In the middle ages they used to use (I think cast) iron bullets for armor-piercing ammunition in firearms going back to the 1300's.

    So it seems to me that tungsten ammunition might be appreciated. Both for firearms bullets and for 'cannister' type shot for cannons.

    Conversely, ceramic or even beryl armor as a kind of one-off defense against powerful firearms, muskets etc., maybe for some kind of elite one-time use like a hit-squad is a kind of interesting idea. I mean, it's used today. Could find a niche. Seems like it would be extra vulnerable to a lot of hand weapons for example, hammers and maces. Probably axes, maybe swords and spears too.

    And I think in thicknesses being worth use- it would be heavier and bulkier than armor people were used to. However anywhere that high energy muskets are a threat anything that can save you might be appreciated.

    G
    This all makes sense. Could be useful for generals who don't engage in combat? They are unlikely to be engaged in melee, but could need protection against ooportune shots. Especially in sieges. I believe quite a few Maltese commanders were sniped in the Siege of Malta?

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Haighus View Post



    This all makes sense. Could be useful for generals who don't engage in combat? They are unlikely to be engaged in melee, but could need protection against ooportune shots. Especially in sieges. I believe quite a few Maltese commanders were sniped in the Siege of Malta?
    Yes indeed, there is this curious thing in the Late Medieval and Early Modern era that in spite of the general rule that early muzzle loading firearms were fairly inaccurate and had fairly short effective range, there were clearly exceptions to this. We can see this in records of shooting contests sponsored by the towns in Italy and Central Europe, and on the battlefield in places like Malta and also famously in the siege of Rome where the artist Buenvenutto Cellini killed at least one, possibly two senior commanders of the besieging army (ironically perhaps contributing to the brutal sack of Rome).

    IIRC at Malta you had about 50 'marksmen' on both sides who could hit individual targets at 200 or 300 meters or maybe even more, whereas the typical handgunner could only hit targets ~50 -100 meters away.

    I think Cellini actually got one of his victims with a long-barreled cannon.

    G
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post
    I think Cellini actually got one of his victims with a long-barreled cannon.

    Sounds like an earlier version of Hathcock and his scoped M2 machine gun.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    One more permutation for this... how effective would corundum be as a sort of glaze? Regardless of its use, it'd almost certainly be a vanity thing, as a glaze-thin layer of corundum probably won't affect the overall durability of the armor itself that much...
    I'm just here for the fries.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post
    Yes indeed, there is this curious thing in the Late Medieval and Early Modern era that in spite of the general rule that early muzzle loading firearms were fairly inaccurate and had fairly short effective range, there were clearly exceptions to this. We can see this in records of shooting contests sponsored by the towns in Italy and Central Europe, and on the battlefield in places like Malta and also famously in the siege of Rome where the artist Buenvenutto Cellini killed at least one, possibly two senior commanders of the besieging army (ironically perhaps contributing to the brutal sack of Rome).

    IIRC at Malta you had about 50 'marksmen' on both sides who could hit individual targets at 200 or 300 meters or maybe even more, whereas the typical handgunner could only hit targets ~50 -100 meters away.

    I think Cellini actually got one of his victims with a long-barreled cannon.

    G
    On the subject of old firearms, I've just come across this fabulous example of a 17th century smoothbore. Simply breathtaking. I am really falling in love with these old guns.

    Last edited by Haighus; 2018-01-29 at 06:02 PM.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Ironsmith View Post
    One more permutation for this... how effective would corundum be as a sort of glaze? Regardless of its use, it'd almost certainly be a vanity thing, as a glaze-thin layer of corundum probably won't affect the overall durability of the armor itself that much...
    It might actually help, a thin glaze assuming it was thin enough probably wouldn't break over a large area on any hit and the extra surface hardness would tend to inhibit a lot of things. However it would likely be very rough so mishandling could result in nasty injuries.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Carl View Post
    It might actually help, a thin glaze assuming it was thin enough probably wouldn't break over a large area on any hit and the extra surface hardness would tend to inhibit a lot of things. However it would likely be very rough so mishandling could result in nasty injuries.
    You would also have to be very careful that the shattering crystal not send razor sharp shards everywhere, including into you.

    It's one of the issue the conquistadors had against the Incan obsidian arrow heads, as they had a tendency to shatter on their metal armour, with the glass fragments potentially causing more grievous wounds than an intact arrow itself.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Clistenes View Post
    The Chinese had an advantage of 17 to 1, and the Dutch stood their ground until their rear was taken by surprise... if that battle proves something, it is the superiority of guns over bows...

    I mean, if a sword-wielding guy keeps at bay 17 other guys armed with bricks in socks until one of them manages to sneak from behind and hit the back of his head, that doesn't mean the brick and sock are more powerful than the sword, it just means that he lost to an overwhelming numerical advantage and a surprise attack...
    Actually the Chinese side of the story clearly shows that it was a gun vs gun battle. And Koxinga only had like 1,000 ~ 1,200 troops in that battle (500 gunners, 200 small cannons, 500 ambushers. Uncertain if the 200 small cannons count towards the initial 500 gunners, or count as separate unit). Bow wasn't even mentioned as far as I know (sure they had bows, but bows probably didn't factor much in their tactical plannin).
    Last edited by wolflance; 2018-01-31 at 04:39 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post
    Yes indeed, there is this curious thing in the Late Medieval and Early Modern era that in spite of the general rule that early muzzle loading firearms were fairly inaccurate and had fairly short effective range, there were clearly exceptions to this. We can see this in records of shooting contests sponsored by the towns in Italy and Central Europe, and on the battlefield in places like Malta and also famously in the siege of Rome where the artist Buenvenutto Cellini killed at least one, possibly two senior commanders of the besieging army (ironically perhaps contributing to the brutal sack of Rome).

    IIRC at Malta you had about 50 'marksmen' on both sides who could hit individual targets at 200 or 300 meters or maybe even more, whereas the typical handgunner could only hit targets ~50 -100 meters away.

    I think Cellini actually got one of his victims with a long-barreled cannon.

    G
    If Barnabe Rich is to be believed, then according to those who fought in the low countries, the single greatest advantage of the full sized musket was that it could be used almost like artillery, to create a beaten ground against formations of horsemen and footmen 480-600 yards away.

    " in truth one of the most especiall causes that muskets are so much regarded, is because they may be brought 24 and 30 scores off to beate upon squadrons either of horsemen or footmen, to breake and dismember them: and in like maner to beate passages or grounds of advantage taken by the enemy. . . but for those that do no better valew of the musket, but to give their volies at tenne, twenty, or thirtie paces: it should seeme they knew of no other service in the field. . . captains that be of experience are accustomed to place the stand of pikes (wherein consisteth their strength) upon some ground of advantage, and as neere as they can will bring some hedge, some ditch, some shrubbes or bushes, or some other like helpes betweene them and the enemy, because they would not lie open to the musket shot"

    "

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by wolflance View Post
    Actually the Chinese side of the story clearly shows that it was a gun vs gun battle. And Koxinga only had like 1,000 ~ 1,200 troops in that battle (500 gunners, 200 small cannons, 500 ambushers. Uncertain if the 200 small cannons count towards the initial 500 gunners, or count as separate unit). Bow wasn't even mentioned as far as I know (sure they had bows, but bows probably didn't factor much in their tactical plannin).
    The text I read said it were more than 4,000 chinese troops vs 240 or less dutchmen...

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Clistenes View Post
    The text I read said it were more than 4,000 chinese troops vs 240 or less dutchmen...
    Was it a Dutch text?

    (If you gave me those numbers measuring astronauts modern infantry fighting against cavemen, I'd still raise my eyebrows.)
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by gkathellar View Post
    (If you gave me those numbers measuring astronauts modern infantry fighting against cavemen, I'd still raise my eyebrows.)
    There's the Siege of the Internation Legations during the Boxer War, which pitted 409 soldiers and 150 civilian volunteers versus somewhere in the region of 20,000 Chinese rebels.

    Even taking into account that the unit 10,000 is often a poetic Chinese term meaning 'lots and lots' rather than an actual figure, that's still a lot of troops, showcasing the power of modern weaponry, better trained troops and fortified positions (the Western powers, Russian and Japanese troops were equipped with a variety of bolt action repeating rifles, while the Chinese rebels had single shot Martini Henrys or Martini Metfords, or just armed with melee weapons).

    While searching, I found this (most likely apocryphal) anecdote regarding how the various relief forces managed to get inside Peking to relive the siege:

    - The Russians love artillery so they wheeled up their fieldpieces and blew it open.
    - The Japanese love insane bravery: one man rushed forward with a satchel charge and was shot down. Another man rushed forward, picked it up, and was shot down. Repeat until the charge was finally placed to blow open the gate.
    - The Americans love individual guts: two men snuck up to the wall by night, scaled it and opened the gate.
    - The British are just stupid-lucky: they found their gate unguarded and marched through with bands and bagpipes playing.

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