Syren, Brig, SC&H R/C Square Rigger, 1/24 scale - Page 16 - RC Groups
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Jan 18, 2013, 02:09 PM
Pond Sailer's Avatar
Tim, I have seen that white stuff once before on vacation. Its much like what we have here but its a much more refined version being white. Its sand and lots of it Dan is doing his test on a beach.

Dan is locking in on his gun effects. I like all three loads. The APP load looks like a long gun blast. The BP and APP seems to burn hotter and gets all the powder to turn to smoke. On the lake it may even camouflage the ship for a moment behind all that.

Looking like it will be worth working through the small list of problems. I like the idea of twisting two wires instead of one bigger wire. With your new reloading of inserting barrels I think two smaller wires will help barrels sliding into outter barrel without jamming. I think you know what I am trying to say.

Can I say thank you for doing the videos of these tests. It really shows so much more than a picture.

Thank You Dan.
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Jan 21, 2013, 08:12 AM
Registered User
DanL's Avatar

Gun Fixation

Gary, Tim,
Reading your e-mails on the gun control system led me to this next idea. I'm happy and pizzed at the same time.
Tim's thinking one-use igniters. I'm thinking how to best use my existing guns.
Gary is thinking how to get 100% ignition performance.
We all want fast, easy reload.
The latest Syren vids/gun approach still uses brass casings and re-useable nichrome igniters. Bulky, still requires maintenance and some igniter repair, difficult to build, and requires precise contact alignment.
But this latest idea - which will work and is the best so far (I humbly think) - is the way to go if new guns are designed, built from sctratch.
So I'm happy, but now I think I'm dumping al my barrels and going this new direction - aaarrrghhhhh....
- fine wire igniter - only low voltage and current req'd for 100% vaporization
- very fast ignition of charge
- front end ignition
- cheap, easy to make loads
- soda straws come in many diameters and colors (eg, black 3/8")
- no maintenance - very clean system with new igniter with every load
- low precision required for assembly - two contact ends of wire only need to
line up with their respective barrel liner halves
- still fast load and literally dozens of cartridges can be made in very little time
- still nearly water proof - can be loaded into damp barrel
- no disadvantages
I have fired loads in bare soda straws before. Actually, even many times over in the same straw. Surprisingly no heat damage, no exploding barrel, etc. Key is short L/D ratio, NO mass in front of load (besides free moving wad) and reasonable charge size.
Here's a conceptual pic. Hmmm, now where can I get new barrels????
Jan 21, 2013, 12:08 PM
Paratrooper's Avatar
I wonder if maybe--no! I ain't gunna build another one but man I did enjoy the fleet sailing.
Jan 21, 2013, 03:57 PM
Pond Sailer's Avatar
6Did I just read this correctly? I had to go and put eyedrops in to clear my vission. Yes, The king is back. Ah Ray I hope you do change your mind and think about another ship, maybe the smallest model and put twice the amount of guns on her to capture new prizes at sea . You have the best lake for movie making. I guess we will need to hunt for a Battle Creek someplace in the center of the country to all meet. ill have to order that trailer sooner than I thought, because you could build the next ship in half the time as before.

Dan, your gun design is looking better all the time and not to soon with Rays last post. Your work on this project and like a fine chef using your reduction skills of this fine recipe has made for a gourmet meal for a king. The Captain can have a box full of loads ready for any outing and place these rounds into place and ship out again for another strike in less than the time it would take to load two guns now. in fact if one had a shipmate that day to help this is something that can be done by almost anyone with quick training. you know your on something when you have it down to the least amount of parts and ease of use. I would not want to speak for others but this is brilliant in its simplicity and design.

Thanks Dan for not giving up to get to this point.
Last edited by Pond Sailer; Jan 21, 2013 at 04:03 PM.
Jan 21, 2013, 04:35 PM
Paratrooper's Avatar
No shipmate--I'm done building but I would be up to coming to a fleet sail to watch and cook steaks!
Jan 21, 2013, 06:30 PM
Registered User
DanL's Avatar

Straw Cartridge Test

built a test gun and tested the new throw away cartridge made from a plastic straw.
Worked great. Cartridges EZ to make.
Bummed - now I really want to make a set of all new guns this way. So much effort into the current guns.....
Pics show test results. Sorry no vid of teh shot, but good smoke and flash, fast ignition.
Reload is very fast. Blown cartridge is melted mass, but pulls easily out of teh barrel. See pics. A blast in a straw in free air results in no damage to teh straw (tested in the past) But inside the barrel, the blast melts the straw. Whatever - don't try the straw alone - maybe I was lucky in the past test.
Making cartridge is easy:
- cut straw to length
- plug end - I used a blob of hot glue
- punch in a piece of nichrome wire. With 28g wire, the wire itself can be used to punch the holes thru the straw.
- load powder
- add wad
Done. Goes very fast.

Used 11/32 OD (5/16 ID) brass tube and a 9/32" dia. straw.
Heres a source for what may be the perfect straw - black, just under 5/16" dia. for ez fit into 11/32 OD (5/16 ID) barrel, good price:

Really good source for nichrome wire:
Jan 21, 2013, 07:18 PM
Paratrooper's Avatar
I am not surprised--it won't be long and you'll have invented something that everyone will want and willing to pay for ready-made. I can see it now--"Minnesota man finds second career in the frozen nort country by inventing a new 18th century weapon for ship board use. Hundreds flocking to his door". Headline in the Mannysnoda BarleyKorn Gazzette.
Jan 22, 2013, 03:24 AM
meatbomber's Avatar
hmmmm Ray i could take care of that as in i ship you mine you build it and after 2-3 years of fleet sailing you ship it back to me
Jan 22, 2013, 07:33 AM
Paratrooper's Avatar
This would be like jumping someone else's parachute--I am sure it would end in the trees!
Jan 23, 2013, 04:16 PM
Registered User
DanL's Avatar

Another change to barrel design

Promise - last change.....
The split barrel was difficult to make - splitting teh tube, alignment in the barrel, etc. It also required the nichrome to punch thru both wall of the straw - required heavy nichrome or making prepunched holes then trying to thread thru the two holes. Also required cartridge to be aligned so teh two lateral exposed wires each contacted opposite barrel sides.

New idea: A two piece barrel, but a front and back section. Now easy to cut teh barrel tube sections and easy to align and attach inside the resin barrel shell. Now the straw cartridge changes too. The nichrome only has to penetrate one side of the straw. Now a hole can be punched and thinner, cheaper nichrome can be used. Now one end lays along the upper exterior side of the straw and the other goes out the bottom and is simply folded up the side. The foam base plug holds it in place.
See the drawing showing teh new alignment. Another advantage is that the cartridge no longer requires aligment with two lateral halves. Now impossible to misalign the cartridge.
Notes from testing:
- Hot glue as a base seal doesn't work. It's a bit slow, easy to leave a hole/gap and once hardened may not fit in the gun because the straws are sometimes very oval vs round. A short foam plug works great, and it will locate and hold the igniter in place at the bottom of teh straw.
- Tweezers are needed to remove the blown cartridge. It melts and deforms, and usually is back in the barrel with nothing close to teh muzzle to grab.
- Don't tighten the wad in place. I crimped the straw just a bit to hold the foam wad a bit more tightly. The blast was very loud, minimal smoke and it knocked the whole test gun assembly backward. The big key to safety here is being sure there is no way to generate backpressure in the barrel.
- If a straw barrel is ignited in free air, the wad blows out and the flash/smoke puff occurs. The straw is fine - no eveidence of any damage. I repeated this. But when the straw is enclosed in a barrel, it melts and totally deforms. My guess is that it can't expand, holding the wad a bit tighter and that a bit longer residence time for burn in the barrel result in higher/longer heat exposure.

Building a new test barrel with this design today. Maybe video, at least some pics, tomorrow.

I think this may be it for awhile. Gotta get a life....
Jan 23, 2013, 05:00 PM
Paratrooper's Avatar
One way to get a life is to build a railroad--then desire more railroad--count the pennies in the big pig--justify--justify--justify then count the pennies again. Consider how much work is involved then consider how much fun it is to ride and of course reconsider how much maintainence will be required for double the amount of track and rejustify.

I read your post and I got a headache then I wrote mine and now I have a stomach ache and a headache.

Now this is A LIFE!
Jan 23, 2013, 08:55 PM
Registered User
DanL's Avatar

Gilda Radner: "Never Mind"

Get enough steel ribbon laid and you can start local freight service to fund even more expansion!

Never Mind!
Tested the new tube configuration, and lost the biggest advantage of the old two-lateral-half configuration: the ability to plant the nichrome at the front of the load. What a difference. The new format barrel gives a bigger bang, but not nearly as much smoke. And it doesn't melt the straw, probably meaning some of the powder is blown out and burns after leaving the barrel (or doesn't burn at all).

So a big advantage of the lateral split barrel is that the igniter can be moved back and forth in the load to get more bang or more smoke. With the front/rear piece barrel configuration, I'm not sure how to get the ignition at the front of the load and still maintain a convenient wire configuration.

A bit more noodling required, but the straw load concept is definitely the way I'm going.
Jan 25, 2013, 03:25 AM
meatbomber's Avatar
Ray it seems you need to make a track from your new ship shed to teh local pond so you can combine your hobbies ?

weŽd even call you Ray Fitzcarraldo

Tho i have to say i`m sure you woudn`t bungle the ship over the mountain action like they did !
Jan 25, 2013, 05:58 PM
Registered User
TBowman's Avatar
Hi Meatbomber,

Think they're gonna need a bigger pond.

Jan 25, 2013, 06:05 PM
Paratrooper's Avatar
Tim, what you don't know is that they let this get away from them and it dragged 19 into the river when they failed to let go of the bow lines. Two were seriously wounded when the log they were trying to straighten rolled over their feet. Several more were injured when a tree branch swept them from the deck just after getting the ship into the water. The worst thing was that the crew failed to replace the scuttle plugs and she sank in 29 feet of muddy water.

And that's the TRUTH!

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