How Long Can Black Powder Remain Loaded?

Discussion in 'Blackpowder' started by Smokin'Joe, Jan 13, 2013.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Smokin'Joe

    Smokin'Joe Member

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2011
    Messages:
    346
    Location:
    Massachusetts
  2. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2005
    Messages:
    26,423
    Location:
    The end of the road between Sodom and Gomorrah Tex
    Comments were interesting.
     
  3. raa-7

    raa-7 Member

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2012
    Messages:
    309
    Location:
    North Country / Florida
    That is so cool.That must have been a fun day at work for the guys that found it,especially loaded :eek: Thanks for showing that smokin ' Joe
     
  4. joecil

    joecil Member

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2012
    Messages:
    782
    Location:
    Lexington, Kentucky
    I read recently that they have found several kegs of black powder that had been buried during the French and Indian war that was still working. It seems the dug it up doing an excavation of an old fort.
     
  5. RetiredUSNChief

    RetiredUSNChief Member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2012
    Messages:
    11,327
    Location:
    SC (Home), VA (Work)
    OMG!

    An 18th century Revolutionary War era assault weapon, fully loaded since the 1860's, that didn't kill anybody for a century and a half? :eek:

    :D:D
     
  6. Shanghai McCoy

    Shanghai McCoy Member

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Messages:
    5,473
    Location:
    The,sort of, Free state
    I left my flintlock loaded from Sept till this January with the touch hole plugged by a tooth pick. Took it out back, primed it and it went right off. Even hit what I was aiming at..:)
     
  7. swathdiver

    swathdiver Member

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2010
    Messages:
    737
    Location:
    Treasure Coast, Florida
    One of our Southern Generals had a pair of '51 Navies if memory serves that were loaded sometime late during the War of Northern Aggression and not fired until after his death, around 40 years after the war ended. All twelve rounds went off without a hitch.

    Every year hundreds of Muzzleloaders from generation past are handed down and discovered to be ready to go with ball and powder still inside them. That's the way it was and the way it still should be.
     
  8. Driftwood Johnson

    Driftwood Johnson Member

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2011
    Messages:
    6,051
    Location:
    Land of the Pilgrims
    Howdy

    Yes, that happens all the time. At least it used to. C&B pistols were found in attics and when fresh caps were put on they fired. Black Powder will remain potent forever as long as it is stored in a dry place. A C&P pistol stored in an attic is a pretty dry place.
     
  9. Patocazador

    Patocazador Member

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2012
    Messages:
    5,527
    Location:
    Central Florida
    Since black powder absorbs moisture, I would think that in Central Park it would be soggy being near the rivers and the harbor.

    I think that anti-gun Mayor Bloomberg should be the one to test fire it BEFORE they remove the cement plug. All in favor raise your hands.
     
  10. Jaymo

    Jaymo Member

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2010
    Messages:
    3,574
    In a city with such draconian victim disarmament laws, such a destructive "assault weapon" was stored so carelessly. Gasp!
     
  11. Catweazle

    Catweazle Member

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2013
    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    Wales, United Kingdom
    They should have taken the cannon to the range and fired it, that would have made it a much more interesting relic. They could have filmed it and put it on the news. History needs to be made a bit more interesting if todays youth are to value it.
     
  12. RetiredUSNChief

    RetiredUSNChief Member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2012
    Messages:
    11,327
    Location:
    SC (Home), VA (Work)
    Hmmm...

    Could have been quite a bit more excitement than some people would expect, however.

    Setting off an unknown powder charge with an unknown shot load, with a 2 century old cannon with an unknown firing history and probably a century and a half of corrosion.

    Well...excitement might not be quite the proper word for that!

    Nonetheless, the pyromaniac in me would have yearned to set that up safely in a remote field, somewhere.

    :D

    Ah, well...I'll just stick to the 6 foot carbide cannon I made for the Fourth of July last year. It's a wee bit safer for my kids to play with, too!

    http://youtu.be/X6xhYELYVDw

    Check it out...in the words of my wife, when she finally saw it: "That's actually pretty cool!"

    (That's high praise from my wife!) :evil:
     
  13. scrat

    scrat Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2007
    Messages:
    6,877
    Location:
    Monrovia, CA
    Nice cannon Chief
     
  14. Smokin'Joe

    Smokin'Joe Member

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2011
    Messages:
    346
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    Ditto what Scrat said.
     
  15. RetiredUSNChief

    RetiredUSNChief Member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2012
    Messages:
    11,327
    Location:
    SC (Home), VA (Work)
    Thanks!

    My next project (time permitting) is a pair of scale replica Civil War era mortars.

    I took the opportunity during my recent trip to Charleston to go to the Battery downtown and take some pictures and make some sketches & measurements.

    These will be used to actually launch fireworks.

    If I get them done in time for July 4th, the kids and I will one-up my wife's cousin (who brings four figures worth of fireworks every year). He's been getting on my wife's nerves for a couple years now, so this will earn some points from my wife on this.

    :evil:

    Last year we had the "cool" factor...his fireworks display was awesome as usual...but the cannon was the center of attention. :neener:
     
  16. Jim K

    Jim K Member.

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2002
    Messages:
    17,847
    Black powder is not a chemical compound, it is a mechanical mixture. It has no known "shelf life" and if kept dry will remain good for centuries.

    So beware of old guns, mainly muzzle loading shotguns, that might be loaded. Check, then double check!

    Jim
     
  17. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2005
    Messages:
    26,423
    Location:
    The end of the road between Sodom and Gomorrah Tex
    Not in Corpus Christi, Texas, it ain't...:D Still, I ran a test of cylinders, loaded one and sealed with candle wax. Loaded one and sealed with clear nail polish. Both ends were sealed, ball side and cap side. After storing four months in the garage in the fall (quite humid), the candle wax had a couple of hang fires. The one sealed with nail polish fired like fresh. I'm goin' with the nail polish, myself. :D One thing, though, on a Colt, I found the candle wax had an advantage, the caps didn't fall out of the nipple, no cap jams. So, with the colt, I'll do both nail polish first, then wax the nipples.

    This was a test to see if a cylinder could be left loaded for some time in humidity and still fire if sealed with something. I didn't apply fresh caps, fired as was after 4 months sitting in a humid environment. These things will fire reliably if properly loaded even if loaded over a period of time.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice