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27. July 1872

Aftenposten beskriver møtet mellom en jeger bevæpnet med tapprifle og en bjørn: «[Jægeren] havde en... Read more ...

Yesterday

26. July 1714

Trefningen ved Lindesnes


27. July 1872

Møte mellom tapprifle og bjørn
Aftenposten beskriver møtet mellom en jeger bevæpnet med tapprifle og en bjørn:

«[Jægeren] havde en gammel Taprifle hos sig, og skjønt den var i miserabel Stand og ladet med en Kugle, der ikke passede i Løbet, men var udforet med Filler etc. saa traf han dog Bamsen med et udmærket Skud. Kuglen gik ind i munden og ud igjen og derpaa atter in i Brystet. Efer at have modtaget denne Hilsen gjorden den helt om, sprang ca. 50 Alen og falt død om.»

26. July 1714


Trefningen ved Lindesnes
Trefningen ved Lindesnes med Petter Wessel Tordenskjolds i hovedrollen er et av de mest legendariske sjøslagene i norgeshistorien. Om ettermiddagen den 26. juli 1714 mellom Lindesnes og Skagen førte Wessel fregatten Løvendals Galley med 18 kanoner og 100 mann under nederlandsk flagg for å unngå å varsle sine tiltenkte bytter da han så en stor fregatt under engelsk flagg nærme seg. Etter å ha passert Wessels skip, la fregatten plutselig om kursen og skjøt to skudd idet man heiste det svenske flagg. Wessel heiste da det danske flagget og vendte skipet sitt om fra dets utsatte posisjon, for så å rette en voldsom beskytning mot det større krigsskipet som viste seg å være fregatten De Olbing Galley med 28 kanoner og 90 til 150 mann. Tordenskjold hadde besluttet å ta opp striden, til tross for at hans motstander var større med flere kanoner og flere menn.

I over tre timer lå de to fregattene side om side mens kanonene skjøt salve på salve med voldsomme brak helt til ved ti-tiden om aftenen. Da mente kaptein Bactman på De Olbing Galley at nok var nok og satte alle seil til for å kom seg unna i ly av mørket. Wessel tok ikke opp forfølgelsen før han hadde fått de verste skadene reparert, men kunne da lett ta igjen den andre fregatten, som var blitt sterkt skadet etter den lange trefningen. Så kom det til et nytt sammenstøt som varte i nesten to timer til like over midnatt. Bactman mistet storråen på stormasten, men Wessel måtte likevel bryte av fordi det var forvoldt store skader som måtte repareres på hans eget skip. Uansett kunne ikke Bactman gjøre bruk av sine seil for å komme seg vekk, og Wessel kunne ta ham igjen på nytt.

Ved seks-tiden om morgenen den 27. juli 1714 barket de sammen enda en gang i et tredje sammenstøt. Dette varte i tre timer. Begge skip fikk omfattende skader. De Olbing Galley fikk flere av rærne i riggen skutt sønder og sammen, mens Løvendals Galley fikk tre grunnskudd under vannlinjen og skade på rær, master og seil. Skadene var så store at begge måtte stoppe ildgivningen en stund for å unngå at skipene skulle synke under dem. Men ingen ville gi seg. Etter flere nye timer med nødreparasjoner kom det til et fjerde sammenstøt ut på ettermiddagen.

Etter en times ny strid var endelig De Olbing Galley i ferd med å overgi seg. Akkurat i dette øyeblikket, da Wessel hadde seieren innen rekkevidde, kom sjokket da en underoffiser kom til og forklarte at de ikke hadde mer krutt, bare nok til tre–fire skudd på hver kanon. Wessel ville først entre fienden, men i vest-nord-vest vind med ustadig sjø og høye dønninger lot det ikke seg gjøre. Han måtte la den svenske fregatten få dra vekk.


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    Featured article

      The Springfield Trapdoor Rifle

    • The Springfield Trapdoor Rifle

      The Springfield Trapdoor rifle was a result of the need of the US Army for a breech-loader that could be fired with metallic cartridges. The plans to adopt a breech-loading infantry rifle were started as during the Civil War (1861-65), and gunsmiths from all over the world were invited to submit suggestions for a new rifle mechanism. This is the story of the Springfield Trapdoor.

    The P-1856 Enfield Project

    Category: Muzzle-loading
    Published: 24. November 2007 by Øyvind Flatnes.
    Edited: 24. November 2007.
    Views: 28803

    P-56 Enfield

    Pattern 1856 Army Short Rifle with the issue sabre bayonet.

    It's about time to start up a new project page. The "Longrifle Project" has not been updated much the past few years, mainly because the rifle shoots very well and I have found the proper loads for her. It's time for something completely new! My new challenge is an original Enfield two-band rifle musket .577 calibre. The proper model designation is "Pattern 1856 Army Short Rifle" (also called "Sergeant's Rifle"), and it's made in 1858. Well, it's about to get started. First some background information.

    Find out more!
    You can learn more about the history and use of British and American rifle muskets and the Pritchett and Minié balls in the brand new book From Musket to Metallic Cartridge: A Practical History of Black Powder Firearms.

    Background: The P-1856 Short Rifle

    Lås

    Fixed bayonet.

    The P-1856 was the first short rifle in the new .577 calibre family of muskets made by the Enfield factory in England for the British Army. The long three band rifle musket which was used by the regular line infantry was introduced in 1853 and the model is known as the P-1853. The P-1856 was issued to all sergeants of Line Regiments, the Rifle Brigade and the 60th Regiment, the Cape Mounted Rifles and the Royal Canadian Rifles. Unlike the P-53 that was called a "rifle musket" the P-56 was called a "short rifle" or just a "rifle" to separate them from the long three band P-53 with a 39" barrel and the short carbine with 24" barrel. The P-56 had a 33" barrel. The P-56 replaced the old Baker and Brunswick rifles which was used in the British Army prior to the adoption of the minié system in 1851.

    Snap cap

    The snap cap».

    The P-1856 resembles the P-1858 Naval Rifle that's very common in replica form, but the barrel configuration is different. The Army Short Rifle has case hardened iron furniture while the Naval Rifle has brass. Another difference is that the Army's rifle has the rear sling swivel behind the trigger guard while the Naval Rifle has the sling swivel in front of the trigger guard. The P-56 has the same rifling twist, rifling depth and number of rifles as the P-53, i.e. three broad rifles that makes one turn in 78". Starting in 1858 both the P-53 and the P-56 was rifled with progressive depth rifles. That means the rifling is deeper at the breech (.015") and diminishes evenly towards the muzzle (.005").

    Background: My P-1856 Short Rifle

    My rifle bears the marks of the British government, but is marked "TOWER" and 1858 on the lock plate. That means it wasn't made at the Royal Small Arms Factory at Enfield Lock but by some of the civilian contractors that made rifles for the Government. It has the following markings that can tell about the origin:

    • Lock (inside): W. Corbett
    • Barrel (underside): J. Turner & Sons
    • Stock (barrel channel): T. Turner, A. Davis and Cooper & Goodman

    Merkinger Merkinger

    Unit and Broad Arrow markings.

    All of these are independent contractors that delivered parts for the Government. Corbet made the lock, J. Turner & Sons made the barrel and Thomas Turner & Co stocked it. After that it has gone through the strict Government control and finally it is marked with the broad arrows, which are the Government acceptance marks.

    Otherwise it has Birmingham proof marks and the "broad arrow" markings that make it a service rifle with Government ownership. The proof marks seem to have been defaced on being sold out of the service and then commercially re-proofed at the Birmingham Proof House. On the right side of the stock there is also a very faint W. D. mark which stands for "War Department".

    On the butt plate tang the musket is marked:

    LI
    9
    PO


    According to the experts this can either mean that it was issued to the Linlithgow Volunteers or Milita, or the 51st Regiment. This particular marking is a bit strange, and the experts can't seem to figure it out properly. E-mail me if you know what it is!

    Getting Ready for Shooting

    Munning Internal view of the lock

    Muzzle and lock.

    The musket is in near mint condition with a mirror bright bore and sharp rifling. Because it is made in 1858 it is rifled with progressive depth rifling. Before it could be fired I had to perform the usual "strip down to the smallest screw" check. The weapon showed itself in perfect condition. The lock seemed brand new on the inside. The only thing I did was to replace the original nipple with a replica nipple because I didn't want to wear out the original. Nipples for original Enfields can be bought from most sutlers. I bought mine from Track of the Wolf. Remember that it has to have 5/16-18 threads.

    A useful test to check whether your rifle musket will be a shooter is to remove the barrel bands and tighten the tang screw with the barrel in the stock. If the stock lifts up while you tighten the screw it is a bad sign. If it stays in the stock, well, then you have a good chance of getting your musket to shoot.

    Pistonger Pistonger

    The original nipple to the left and the replica to the right.

    The musket was assembled again and the bore was wiped to get rid of any traces of grease or oils. After that I snapped a few caps to dry up the any oils in the nipple. I blew down the barrel to check if there was clearance through the flash hole and nipple, and it seemed ok. The musket was loaded with 30 grains of Wano FFg black powder followed by a 400 grain minié ball. When I tried firing it the first time the main charge didn't go off. I unscrewed the nipple and found traces of old storage grease in the flash channel. I removed it and tried again. This time the shot got off and the gun didn't blow up. I loaded it again with 60 grains of the same powder fired into the backstop. The rifle was declared a functional weapon and was ready to be put to the test on a target.

    Shooting

    11.26.04: The P-56 is ready for the first test shots on the target. Since the rifling twist is incredibly slow for a 33" barrel it means it will have trouble stabilizing the heavier and long minié bullets. It is not a coincidence that when the P-56 was replaced by a new model Short Rifle in 1860 the twist was the P-58 Naval Rifle's 1 in 48" and it also had five grooves and a heavier barrel.

    Blink

    Lymans Old Style.

    I have access to four minié bullets. For starters I only had available bullets from two of my moulds: the RCBS/Hodgdon Match Minié and the RCBS 58-500 Minié. This is the two bullets I don't think will be the best in this musket, but I had to give them a try. The Hodgdon is a semi wadcutter and is not allowed in MLAIC competitions, while the other is a bit heavy (526 grains). Originally the P-56 used the same ammunition as the P-53 i. e. a paper patched 530 grain Pritchett ball with a load of about 70 grains of black powder.

    I tried the semi wadcutter first, and my expectations weren't high as this bullet is a bit touchy in progressive depth bores. I used my favourite 1861 Armi Sport Springfield replica load: 58 grains of Wano FFg and put up the target at 55 yards.

    Blink Blink

    Groups.

    09.11.05: The best load so far has been as follows: 70 grains Wano PP, Lyman Old Style cast of pure lead weighing 491 grains lubricated with a bee's wax, coconut fat and olive oil mix. The bullet is dip lubed and sized to .5775".

    One thing that's smart is to write a journal when you train. Here is a sample of my journal from this summers training.

    Blinker Blinker Blinker

    The pictures shows some of the best scores I shot
    during the summer of 2005 .

    In July this year I brought the P-56 to the Nordic Championship and shot it in the Minié original class. There's was as usual not much time to train, but despite that I finished with a score that was about 20 points below my training results. I shot 61 points and secured a 5th. place.