1860s: Advanced Civil War weapons



The image was clearly doctored, but it belongs to a different thread and has nothing to do with the OP, which is the advanced civil war weapons. I know that it was posted earlier in this very same thread, but with a different context.

Please avoid derailing threads, we do have a Civil War photography thread discussing staged and doctored images. Just trying to keep things relevant, and in order, which is not easy :geek:


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I see a huge design gap, where we go directly from this to that without anything in between.

It's like if designwise, Formula One went from the 1950s car directly to the 2018 one.

Here are the design related evolution steps for the F-1 car. Where are these evolution steps for the Civil War cannons?

And additionally we have the same old issue, where different "former attorneys" invent Revolving Cannons. Those 19th century schools I guess...

In general this Civil War weapons saga reminds me the image below, where the principle did not change, but something is obviously way off.

I totally get what you are saying, but to me it is all window dressing. That civil war cannon is not very different than a modern howitzer and it's not that different from a supposed Crimean war cannon. It goes boom and throws a rock in essentially the same manner since its inception.

That third gun looks cool, but that's about it. They could have put a shroud around any of them, but that is more a function of tactics.

The cannon is just a tube, what would you have them change? All of the improvements have come in 3 to 5 areas depending how you break it down. Materials. Better steel tubes, better powder, higher pressures, more durability. Ammo. Explosive projectiles, rifled projectiles, consistency of charges and sizes. Mechanics. How to load and unload the thing.

I could make a functional shotgun at home depot for less than 10 bucks, just need ammo.

The precursor tech to these weapons is simply gunpowder and a metal tube. Although, I'm sure wooden cannons have been used as well, they just wouldn't be good for very many shots.

I don't believe the official story, but I still don't see anything anachronistic about these gun designs. These designs could easily have been in the mind of hundreds of historical armorers, just waiting on the materials to try it.

Kind of like the SR-71 plane. Designed long before it could be realized. The material science had to catch up to the design. Of course that story could be false as well, so who knows.

I think some of these guns show the opposite, actually. They show some ingenious and sometimes silly actions for firing and reloading, when ready made cartridges are already starting to be produced. These guns ARE the missing link between a wooden cannon and a modern howitzer.

Looks like a fairly natural progression to me that coincides with the material science of the times.

Now if we find out some of those barrels had some high tech materials(Some do look rather impressive, materially, but that can be decieving) then, sure, we have anachronistic weapons. Just judging by the huge diameters we see on the larger guns at the chamber end, we are not dealing with high grade steel here, no matter how smooth and shiny it looks. They were worried about blowing up the gun, and that's not even with modern propellants.