HMS Scorpion (Cruiser class Brig of War) - Page 6 - RC Groups
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Oct 23, 2012, 09:25 PM
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DanL's Avatar
Make extra steps. If you sail much at all, you will likely lose some, even if pinned on.
These models are workhorses - they take a lot of abuse since the scale waves are monsters and the close encounters with chase/service boats are like crashing into a reef.
That's one thing I love about the SC&H fiberglass hulls - they are really tough.

These new builds are getting me focused on Syren. I just went through the toolbox used for sailing outings. Many custom made tools for adjustments, etc.
If interested, I can take pics of all the stuff as a source of info for your prep to encounter the high seas....
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Oct 24, 2012, 11:30 AM
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TBowman's Avatar
Hi Dan

I'm sure I speak for Andrew as well when I say that any information based on experience with your brig would be greatly appreciated.

all the best
Oct 25, 2012, 02:50 PM
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TBowman's Avatar
I know it seems like I'm doing more drawing then building but I wanted to get these finalized so I can send out a bunch of 3D files at the same time.

Per Dan's smart comments, I changed the way these guns will be assembled. For the 6 pounders, the breech and rear section will stay with the carriage and gun tackle. The barrel is removed for ignition wire replacement, reloading etc.

The 6 pounders will be a simple "one-shot" deal using an electronic match or ignition wire. The barrel on these is only 3.5mm in diameter so it will be interesting to see how much effect I can get out of them.

Hopefully some actual parts to post soon and more progress on the hull.

Oct 25, 2012, 03:26 PM
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DanL's Avatar
A couple of comments on guns...
BP guns are dangerous.... the length to diameter ratio needs to be kept very low (about 5:1 max) to keep internal pressure from blowing these thin brass barrel guns apart. Another recent learning....ignition toward the muzzle end of the charge rather than at the breech end seems to give a bit longer "burn" and more smoke per weight of powder. Ingnition at the back of the charge tends to blow some of the unburned charge out, perhaps due to the short barrel and the absence of mass (projectile) in front of the charge.

The effect from a 3.5mm ID gun will not likely be too dramatic. Over time, the Syren carronades increased to 5/16" (8mm) ID to get a good smoke volume and "puff diameter". Wind and distance greatly reduve the smoke puff effect.

Since the gun muzzle isn't a hugely visible feature, especially at a distance, the balance between scale dimension and functional dimension for muzzle ID needs to be considered.

Suggestions - make the barrel L shorter vs diameter, and consider making the 6pdr barrel a bit larger OD (larger than scale) to allow larger brass liner barrel ID.
Also might consider turning the whole muzzle section from brass pipe nipples - fairly cheap, readily available and fairly easily turned on a small lathe.
Also, maybe make just one or two test barrels to confirm performance before having the lot made.

Just tossing this in since you mention that you are zeroing in on final design.
If you do use brass tubing, K&S round brass tubing (.014" wall) has diameters in 1/32" increments. Link to K&S:
Last edited by DanL; Oct 25, 2012 at 10:46 PM. Reason: add link
Oct 26, 2012, 12:53 PM
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TBowman's Avatar
Hi Dan

Understand. Thank you for the input.

I have been testing the various diameters of tubing along with a few different igniters. I'm actually quite pleased with the performance of the 6 pounder. There will only be 4-6 of these 6 pound guns on my brig at any given time and to have them flash and puff, in any amount, will be an added fun factor. I'm not after a BANG....and the amount of BP I am measuring is minimal.

A side note: have reloaded both rifle and pistol ammo before and also have had a Colt 1860 Army revolver so taking all necessary precautions.

Interesting comment regarding wind and effect on the smoke while on the water. This was always a fine balance with the exhaust on the tanks. The good thing about these ships is I'm not sure there could ever bee "too much" smoke when a rolling-broadside is fired. : )

I consider these pretty much "final" for the six pounders but only temporary for the carronades. Hope that makes sense.

Will start experimenting with multiple tubes as well for the 6 pounders.

all the best
Oct 26, 2012, 02:38 PM
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DanL's Avatar
Last edited by DanL; Oct 28, 2012 at 05:03 PM.
Oct 26, 2012, 03:58 PM
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TBowman's Avatar

FANTASTIC! Your Tiger II looks beautiful. Thanks for sharing that.

The only forums my builds are on are 1:6th scale forums.

Tiger build is about 1/2 way down the Tiger 1 page on Armortek's site. The Panther is under the Panther index page. It might be a few pages back as it's an older thread.

Panther, Tiger 1, Panzer IV and Opel Blitz projects are on this site. Less of an RC site, more of a 1:6th hobby site. Some amazing static stuff here too!

I have a1:6th Tiger II waiting to be built. It will be Tiger # 132 from Kampfgruppe Peiper, Ardennes. This was commanded by the same man that commanded my Tiger 1 # 223 from Normandy. : )

Armortek used to offer a 12 gauge blank firer for their kits. I have one waiting ti go in the King Tiger. : )

The smoker units I finally settled on were built by a friend in the UK and provide a nice belch of smoke at start up and rev. The are wired into the Benedini sound cards I use. Excellent sound cards BTW.

kindest regards
Oct 27, 2012, 02:37 PM
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TBowman's Avatar
Firing sequence images from one of the many test shots. This is from the 6 pounder's scale size tube as shown in my drawings and a larger load then my usual. Unfortunately, in these photos we can't see the nice plume of white smoke.

Once I have the parts here, I will do some multiple-gun firing tests while wired to the same micro switch and with the guns assembled. The 'cook off' time varies per shot so it should give each gun a different ignition as opposed to simultaneous(even though they are being switched on at the same time). May make for a sloppy broadside look. We'll see.

Last edited by TBowman; Oct 27, 2012 at 03:56 PM.
Oct 27, 2012, 06:44 PM
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TBowman's Avatar
Deck planking pegs added

Oct 28, 2012, 12:08 PM
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Normally do not follow this section of the forum.

I do find this interesting. Being an commercial ammunition manufacturer for competitors using 1800s guns, I have some observations.
First what happens when firing. (Blanks)

When igniting black powder from the bottom of the barrel tube, pressure starts to build up and pushes the not yet burnt powder down and out of the barrel. This produces burning particles of powder to leave the barrel. (see photos above)

If the powder is ignited from the muzzle end of the barrel the burning of powder is progressive down the barrel and the pressure build up in the barrel push out the burnt powder and smoke. Very little burning powder leaves the barrel.

This produces more visible smoke than when the burning powder is expelled from the barrel when ignited from the breech end.
There are several manufacturers of real black powder.
Goex, Wano, Schuetzen, Dragon, Elephant, Swiss, old Dupont and others I can't think of at the moment.

Depending on when manufacturer and which grade is used, will effect the amount of smoke produced. Beings powder manufacturers cater to competitive shooters, they work towards making their powder smokeless less, Swiss being the most consistent and least smoke producing.

The larger the granules the slower it burns making more smoke. Goex, Dragon, Elephant and older cans of Wano have a lot of fines in the powder and produce more smoke and erratic burn rates.
Also consider there are substitute powders which produce smoke but are not black powder. They are smokeless powders made to produce smoke. They are also manufactured so that they load by volume like real black powder and do to produce high pressures like smokeless.

Some substitutes produce more smoke than equal parts real BP.

Goex makes a substitute, American Pioneer Powder (APP for short) is a substitute, Pyrodex and Triple Seven. Triple Seven has properties that might make it unsuitable. It is 15% higher pressure. It does not measure volume to volume with real black powder. It was designed for modern hunting firearms.

For miniature cannons and lots of smoke, Goex FFg would do nicely.

For a substitute, APP does very well is easy ignition and produces a lot of very white smoke. APP granules are not uniform in size with in a grade. In my shop FFg will not drop through powder measurers well. In stead FFFg is use.
Real black powder is dependable and some what predictable. On your small scale it might be wise to do some testing with substitute to find the one that works best. Triple Seven would be a NO for me.

Real BP leaves fowling in the barrel.
Substitutes do not leave fowling in the barrel. There is not swabbing between shots needed.

They all clean up with water and soap.

I would also look very hard at muzzle end ignition for producing more smoke and less flying sparks whether you use real BP or substitute.
I like that I see those building working cannons are taking the time to test what they have in mind. Not just putting powder in a tube and shooting it off at the pond not knowing yet what the results will be.
I haven't tested miniatures. Smallest I have work with is .22 caliber and up to 45/120 rifle rounds. Even work with a 4.65" bore mountain howitzer on occasion. (1/2 pound BP and 148 .69" diameter lead balls in a canister. (.69" is 12 gauge balls)
Example photos of smoke;

Real BP (normal load for smoke comparison smoke)

American Pioneer Powder (substitute) lots of white smoke

Pyrodex (substitute) not much smoke
Oct 28, 2012, 01:45 PM
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DanL's Avatar
Great info. I tested Pyrodex, Triple Seven and BP (Goex FFFG). I tested APP just a bit, but it seemed slow and erratic to ignite, similar to the other substitutes. For a rolling broadside, teh charge needs to ignite pretty quickly from gun to gun.
By far, the best smoke results and the fastest, most relaible ignition was with, as you say, the Goex, so I stick with that.
Also, recent tests with a new multi-fire gun design confirm that muzzle end igniton works better than breech end ignition.
A key comment here is that the charges need to be protected with a waterproof wad, as the guns get wet while sailing. I use short cylindrical pieces of closed cell foam cut from foam backer rod.
Tim - your results look really good. Can you share more details?
Oct 28, 2012, 04:49 PM
Registered User
Your choice of foam backer rod is a good one.

In live fire competition, we use foam backer rod in down loaded cartridges to take up the air space between powder and bullets.

The foam is consumed by the heat and flame when fired.

In blanks we use florist foam because it is consumed in less than 2' and limits the possibility of an injury if shot directly at anyone. 25' minimum distance is used in re enactments and you are suppose to pull off target by 4' or more to the side and slight down. Florist foam is consumed so completely that at 4' there is no penetration of plastic food wrap that is stretched tight in front of the muzzle.

Goex Black Powder does ignite easier than all the substitutes but in firearms this is not an issue. Our caps and primers will ignite them all.

Goex is also cheaper per pound than most BPs. Some of the odd brands are cheaper but harder to find. Some are no longer imported to the USA.
By using front end ignition, it should make it easier to build cannons. You don't have to make the breech end removable. You wouldn't have to remove cannons from ship. You fill the barrel and place foam wad. Then push the hot wire in. The foam would keep the hot wire from shorting out on the metal barrel.

You should be good to go.

No disassembly needed to recharge cannons. Load from muzzle end and compress with ram rod.
Oct 29, 2012, 11:26 AM
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TBowman's Avatar
Hi Cliff Hanger

Thank you for taking the time to post such great information. Lots of experimenting to go and hope to show more soon.

kind regards
Oct 29, 2012, 09:58 PM
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Jpop Andrew's Avatar
Hey Tim I got a little project request if you get the time. I was wondering if you could use your uber Solidworks skills and make a rendering of our brigs with a mizzenmast.

Here's a pic I took with one set up on my deck. The cardboard is a two inch extension of the transom.
Oct 30, 2012, 12:20 AM
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DanL's Avatar
Here's a pic of HMS Snake. Google for more pics.

Your hull could be rigged very similar to Snake. Fore and main masts of the brig would likely need to be repositioned.

Search this forum - meatbomber and others discuss the Snake option quite a bit.

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