tkay11

What is the function of this line to the gun carriage on Triton?

I am preparing to make the guns for the Triton cross-section, but have been puzzled by a line to the bed bolt shown in one of the drawings. The line in question is shown below.

 

I'd be grateful if someone could explain its function. I can't see it in any of the other builds I have seen, so wonder if it is necessary, or illustrative of something only occasionally used.

 

post-229-0-80111700-1482968662_thumb.jpg

 

Thanks, as usual, for any guidance!

 

Tony

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Thanks for the amazingly quick replies!

 

Russ: I thought he port tackle went to the rear eyebolt on the carriage. Is that correct? I had been thinking it might just be the training tackle which would only be used when traversing the guns left or right.

 

Anguirel: Would that be attached all the time or only after being run out by the port tackle?

 

Tony

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Hi everyone;

 

The location of the eye-bolt in the ship's side,  further from the gun-port,  was relatively new at this period,  and was done with the sole aim of making it possible to traverse the gun through a wider arc of fire.  Previously the eye-bolts had been much closer to the sides of the gun-ports,  as shown by the other line in the first illustration posted.

 

This was all part of a package of improvements to naval gunnery pioneered by Sir Charles Douglas between 1778-1781;  who,  amongst other things,  also perfected the flintlock firing mechanism by using priming tubes of goose quill,  rather than thin metal (which could fly out as razor sharp fragments on firing)  and introduced flannel cartridges (which left no burning residues in the barrel after firing,  and so were much safer,  and enabled a faster re-load)

 

For more on this,  see the chapter on HMS Duke in the Seawatch Books publication about first & second rates in the Rogers Collection.

 

All the best,

 

Mark P

Edited by Mark P

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Hi

 

The line relieving tackle (5) went to the rear eyebolt and it was used to run the gun back for loading. It would be attached most of the time but not in the configuration shown in the image. Most of the time the guns would be secured for sea. They would only be in that position during actions.

If you want more information about how the guns were operated see this link http://www.navyandmarine.org/ondeck/1800gundrill.htm

 

Hope that helps...

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Thanks a lot, everyone, for the very informative replies and the link. I had suspected the bolt was for the training tackle, Mark P, so thanks for that detailed analysis.

 

I'd better go out and practise my gunnery now, so that I can get a good feel for it.

 

Tony

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I have carefully read all of the above comments - which I found particularly interesting - but there is an ambiguity that needs to be clarified (for me at least). The thread centered on the port tackle but was this replaced by the tackle used for traversing the gun through an arc OR did both the port tackle AND the traversing tackle co-exist ? The eye bolts on the carriage side seem to support the latter ?

 

Pete

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Thanks, Pete. Actually, I had been hoping the thread centred on the outlying training tackle. The training tackle bolts are quite separate from the port tackle bolts (according to David Antscherl's Fully Framed Model Vol II, which I should have checked earlier at he discusses them clearly), so at least they co-existed. As to whether the tackle co-existed it'll be interesting to see what the experts say. I would have thought it might get in the way whilst the guns were in normal use and only used whilst training through an arc.

 

As you say, interesting discussion!

 

Tony

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Hi,

 

Looking at the book "The Arming and Fitting of English Ships of War" by Brian Lavern the port tackle (in the book it's called Gun Tackle was used to run the guns out. it was fixed to the side of the gun carriage thought a eyebolt or ringbolt. To the hull it was fixed on the eyebolt above the eyebolt of the breech rope. The train tackle was similar to the gun tackle, except that it was fixed between the gun and a ringbolt near the centre line of the ship. The train tackle was used to keep the gun in place when reloading.

 

According to the same book there where several problems with traversing the guns from side to side: the narrowness of the gun port, the fact that the gun carriage wheels only went back or forward and the effectiveness of the side tackles was limited due to the position of the ringbolts on the ship's side. So the crew was expected to manoeuvre the guns using crows and hand spikes.

 

Hope that helps

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Thanks, Anguirel. It's interesting to see Lavery's take on it. David Antscherl provided an illustration which may help others who want to position the bolt for the training tackle:

 

post-229-0-11717900-1483092041_thumb.jpg

 

His description is as follows:

 

post-229-0-03935600-1483092028_thumb.jpg

 

Tony

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Greetings everyone;

 

Before the mid 18th century,  only two tackles were issued per gun.  After this,  three per gun were issued,  but never more,  so it is unlikely that two tackles were hooked to one side of the gun.  The tackles at the side of the gun would have been hooked to whichever ringbolt in the ship's side best served the need at that moment: to traverse or to run out.  Doubtless hand-spikes or crowbars were still needed to assist the traversing.

 

The increased traversing ability led to changes in the way that the breeching rope was attached to the cascabel at the breech.  For many years,  it was cu(o)nt spliced,  or looped and seized,  around the button,  but if the gun was fired at any angle other than 90 degrees to the centre line,  one side of the breeching rope would pull taut before the other.  The final solution,  after experiments with passing the rope through thimbles stropped to the button,  was to cast an integral ring at the cascabel,  which allowed the breeching rope to be adjusted from side to side.  This appeared in the Blomfeld pattern guns,  a greatly improved design,  which were put into production just in time for the wars with revolutionary France and then Napoleon.

 

All the best,

 

Mark P

Edited by Mark P
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Here's another thought. David Antscherl specifically says that the training tackle eyebolt was only put in after 1779.

 

The HMS Triton cross-section we are building is of the 1773 ship (I think). So unless it was re-fitted after 1779 I suppose it didn't have any training tackle eyebolts at all!

 

In which case I don't have to put them in, and I can discard that version of the plan (GunDetailLayout.pdf) that's placed with the full build drawings.

 

Well, that was an interesting discussion!

 

Tony

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