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Old September 16, 2011, 10:44 AM   #101
BlueTrain
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Oh, it was a dead end, all right but that's beside the point, I think, for this discussion. It's merely the challenge to see if an idea can be made to work. After all, muzzle loaders and single shots are at best obsolescent but they still sell, if not exactly in huge numbers. However, along the lines of obsolescent technology, it should be pointed out that a semi-automatic faced competition, so to speak, from an already successful system that predated the first Colt revolver, which is to say, double-action.

I do not think Colt manufactured any double action revolvers until after 1873 but other manufacturers had them already. They may not have worked as well as later versions but they were there. In fact, I think there were pepperbox revolving pistols that were "double-action only." Correct me if I'm wrong. Basically, a semi-automatic mechanism is not the only answer to the problem (of increasing the rate of fire). Just the same, I'm aware that many readers of this forum have very sensitive fingers and cannot master double-action mechanisms, especially in pistols.

At any rate, when I mentioned using a feed mechanism other than a box magazine and mentioning a Lewis drum magazine, I was not suggesting that type be used, although there is currently an absence of anything like that in use today (which is beside the point). The self-contained horizontal-sliding charger, harmonica fashion, seems to be a practical option. Any reference to accordians was not to be taken seriously.
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Old September 16, 2011, 06:02 PM   #102
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I apologize for being unclear. I was trying to digest all the new info, and somtimes my mind moves faster than my typing skills.
I'm using my 1860 Colt replica as a reference, and have several crumpled sheets of sketches floating around on top of the computer desk. I love letting my mind wander on projects like this, but my slight dyslexia sometimes prevents me from being clear about my ideas, especially with just typed words.

Quote:
Question is, on my zig zag cylinder concept, would the lead balls move forward when the cylinder recoiled and would the caps stay on the nipples when the cylinder went back forward following recoil?
I think it's a fair assumtion that the loaded chambers would indeed be affected by the recoil of the cylinder. And I think we can also agree that loosely packed powder charges are not a good thing.
So that sets us in search of a way to rotate the cylinder, re-cock the hammer, without the cylinder having to recoil.

Quote:
Not sure which of Stephanie's suggestions you mean Jo. The over the barrel "AK" style gas cylinder of Akumabito's Stephanie thought would be a good basis to start? Or the observation she made about the arbor pin/piston having to ride along the curve of the hammer which in sliding like that, could act as a delaying action?
^This one.

Quote:
Not sure I understand what you mean Jo. Do you mean the "swinging link" of the 1911 instead of a "locking link"? If you do mean the "swinging" link, I'm not tracking on how that would help slow down the system. What would you attach the swinging link to? And wouldn't a swinging link cause an up or down movement on whatever it engages to just like it does the barrel of a 1911? Could you please elaborate a bit more on what you mean? I'm trying to visualize but having difficulty understanding that one. Thanks.
I was trying to figure out a way to actually delay the gas piston from it's rearward movement. I immediately thought of the way a 1911 slide is locked. (or for the HK system of delayed blowback.) But in rethinking the design, I now realize that the design differences between a delayed blowback and a gas system may not work together. Any movement or play within a gas cylinder would leak pressure around the piston.

Could Akumabito's arbor pin design simply be enlarged and placed within the "AK style" piston on top? If more delay is need, how about using a toggle to connect the piston to the hammer. Then the flexing of the toggle action would increase the delay even more.

The wind-up clockwork system was an dea I also had for revolving the cylinder, but I passed over it as being too complicated

Actually, the operating system of a revlover would be fairly easy to reproduce in a harmonica fed firearm, so once we get one, we'll have a good start on the other.
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Old September 17, 2011, 11:08 PM   #103
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Quote:
Jo6Pak wrote:
If more delay is need, how about using a toggle to connect the piston to the hammer. Then the flexing of the toggle action would increase the delay even more.
What you said there Jo got me to thinking. I started thinking of the operation of the Borchardt, Luger and some Pederson toggle actions and how that would help dissipate the rearward force of the piston. I even visualized the operation of a steam locomotive's strut and wheels and how when the straight strut went back it turned the wheel a certain distance, then the inertia and counterweight on the wheel made it go the rest of the way around the circle. Which in the case of this muzzleloader piston, would rotate the rearward force of the piston back forward and thus dissipate the force.

The hammer would be cocked on the piston's rearward movement, then the extra force and movement of piston continuing past the point of cocking the hammer would be transferred to the toggle type strut or mini flywheel attached to the hammer bringing that force back around and dissipating it.
The hammer would actually remain connected via linkage to the piston. So when the hammer is cocked, the piston would travel back with the hammer. And when the hammer fell, the piston would travel forward with the hammer so its piston head would be in position in the tube for the gas to act on it.

One advantage of the hammer being connected to the piston via linkage, is that the piston wouldn't be slamming against the hammer to cock it since it would already be connected to it. The other advantage is once the hammer is cocked and as the piston continues to travel on its rearward path AFTER cocking the hammer, straight and either oblong holes in the hammer or linkage would allow the piston to remain straight even though the hammer's height would change as it pivoted in its arc. So the piston can remain straight (as it has to) while the hammer/linkage allows for height change due to the hammer's height changing arc. Another advantage is with a toggle/locomotive wheel/linkage type of system over the hammer like this, unnecessary force would be "spun out" via centrifugally redirecting the force back forward and thus dissipating it.

I also elongated Akumabito's gas tube and made it so that it has a gas cup that drops down over the muzzle, trapping gas and directing it into the gas tube. So no drilling of barrel is needed. I also made it so the gas tube can utilize dovetails that fit into the existing dovetail slots on an 1858 Remington target sighted revolver. So gas tube just taps into existing dovetail slots and gas trap on gas tube is positioned over muzzle of barrel.

Also, since the hammer would be attached to the gas piston via linkage, you could use a gas piston return spring to actually tension the hammer and do away with the factory hammer spring. Or....you could just use the hammer spring without a gas piston return spring because the hammer being connected to the piston, would allow the factory hammer spring to act as a piston return spring too. Or....you could actually use a combination of BOTH if you felt enough gas force was present on the piston to possibly require both springs.

So I made up a few renderings. I didn't do one showing an entire mini locomotive wheel, but the strut on this rendering I did does show that same method of operation. Not seen in this rendering but oblong holes would allow the piston to travel straight while allowing the height changing hammer to travel both forward and back in its height changing arc.



The two renderings below do away with the other strut on the toggle and instead allowing an unseen oblong hole in the hammer to allow the straight traveling piston's linkage to adjust to its own height while the piston remained straight when the hammer went backwards and forwards in its height changing hammer arc.

Notice in my below two renderings, I also changed Akumabito's gas tube a bit and changed it from having a gas port hole drilled into the barrel, to instead having a lowered end of the gas tube being in front of the muzzle where it can act as a muzzle gas trap and trap gas behind the projectile to be forced into the gas tube without the necessity of drilling a gas hole in the barrel. Like on the Walther rifle and early Browning prototype semi-auto Winchesters.




We've discussed various ways to make the 1858 Remington muzzleloading revolver work semi-automatically. Let's look at the various designs we've discussed so far and examine what pros and cons we have to make a determination of which thus far design might be the best to use as a basis to actually build and experiment on......

1. My zig zag recoiling cylinder semi-auto concept.



pros:
1. No permanent modifications to the muzzleloader's revolver frame. Only a spare cylinder required to be milled.

cons:
1. Recoiling cylinder could possibly cause projectiles to move forward in cylinder chambers away from powder charge.

2. Following rearward recoil of the cylinder, as it moves back forward under decompressing spring, sudden forward movement could possibly cause caps to fall off nipple.

2. Otto's (from steam goggles forum) under the barrel gas tube using the arbor pin as the piston design concept.



pros:

1. Utilizes existing arbor pin so extra piston and its weight is not necessary.

cons:

1. Requires gas hole to be drilled in barrel.

2. Rammer has to be removed permanently for gas tube installation, so cylinder has to be bench loaded off the revolver.

3. Akumabito's expansion of Otto's concept, where Akumabito not only uses Otto's concept of the arbor pin as the piston, but also uses the existing hole in the forward part of the frame for the arbor, to double as a gas cylinder. As well as Akumabito's concept for a mini piston actually within the arbor pin.

(My notes in red on Akumabito's design rendering)



pros:

1. Changes the outward appearance of the muzzleloading revolver the least of all thus far discussed designs.

2. Keeps weight down.

cons:

1. Requires gas hole to be drilled in upward through forward frame hole of arbor pin.

2. Requires gas hole to be drilled in barrel.

3. Requires forward frame hole of arbor pin to be threaded for plug to hold gas.

4. On version using whole arbor pin as piston, requires lugs of end of arbor pin to be removed so gas plug can be screwed into end of forward frame hole.

5. If arbor pin lugs removed, gas plug must be unscrewed to remove arbor pin/piston to remove cylinder. (Not a problem on Akumabito's mini piston within stationary arbor pin since that can be removed as easily as factory arbor pin).

6. If using stationary arbor pin with mini piston in it version, mini piston too small a diameter to handle power of system without bending/breaking.

7. If using stationary abor pin/mini piston version means for gas tight seal, flat lug area of arbor pin lugs would have to be drilled and tapped for bolt with "L" shaped drilled in it that also means bottom of barrel's gas hole would have to be threaded for "L" shaped bolt to screw into it to enable secure gas seal between barrel gas tap hole and arbor pin/gas tube.

4. Akumabito's "AK" style gas tube over the barrel design concept (with gas trap over muzzle and hammer connected to piston via linkage changes added by me).



pros:

1. On a target sighted 1858 Remington, the dovetails on the top of frame and barrel for the sights, could have the sights removed and those dovetails used to secure the gas tube to the top of the barrel requiring no modification to the revolver to do.

2. I changed Akumabito's gas tube a bit and changed it from having a gas port hole drilled into the barrel, to instead having a lowered end of the gas tube being in front of the muzzle where it can trap gas without the necessity of drilling a gas hole in the barrel. So no gas hole has to be drilled in the barrel.

3. Toggle linkage/locomotive wheel style concept in hammer area acts as a delay to operational forces and redirects unneeded force forward dissipating it.

4. No permanent internal or external modifications to revolver's frame nor barrel required at all (Except of course for lockwork change that would be necessary in ALL the designs to make hammer stay back while trigger was still depressed from last shot fired). Would only require fabricating a different hammer (for linkage hookup to piston) that is easily replaced. Although not my favorite visually, in my opinion the best design so far for no permanent mods to the revolver and lends itself to a toggle/locomotive wheels type of delaying and redirecting force action as well as for no gas port holes having to be drilled due to my addition of gas trap built on gas tube located over barrel's muzzle.

cons:

1. Biggest change in appearance of all designs discussed.

2. Gas tube over barrel and toggle/locomotive wheel linkage on hammer lends to more weight as well as larger dimensions on revolver than other designs.

3. Gas cup trap over muzzle adds to overall length of barrel.

4. Would suffer from being called "A Kalugington" LOL!
(Kalashnikov, Luger, Remington features= "Kalugington"). Or we could call it a "Remylugerkov", or a Lugerremykov, or a.........Ahhhh, just getting silly now.

Of all the semi-auto muzzleloading revolver concepts we've discussed so far, the "AK" style gas tube over the barrel version of Akumabito's was at first the least visually appealing to me. But as I examine it's attributes, it is fast growing on me....even visually.

I can't deny that design requires no permanent modification to the revolver and keeps its gas tube action out of the way of the rammer, frame, and with my addition of a muzzle cup gas trap on the gas tube located over the end of the barrel's muzzle, requires no gas holes to be drilled, and could be taken off and the revolver easily restored to its factory operation at any time. Just remove the fabricated hammer and its linkage and the piston and replace with factory hammer. Tap gas tube sideways out of factory dovetails it is in that were for the factory adjustable sights, restore sights to dovetail slots. And revolver is back to factory configuration again. That's what I think is the best experimental design to work on at this point unless other viable designs are pro offered. At least for the semi-auto muzzleloading revolver handgun concept anyway. We've discussed basic ideas but we haven't really gotten quite this far yet on a semi-auto or full auto tripod harmonica block weapon's design yet. I'd like to get this handgun concept finalized before we get to that.

Your thoughts on improvements or changes to this latest version 1858 Remington semi-auto design concept? Or for even totally different muzzleloading semi-auto/full auto design concepts?




.
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Old September 18, 2011, 08:21 AM   #104
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I think the 'ak' style would be the most reliable system of them all. I think we should scrap my earlier idea of incorporating the gas piston into the arbor pin.. too much worries about pin diameter, no real method of cushioning the impact, sealing problems, etc.. All of these problems could be overcome, but to make it a reliable system, quite a bit of work would need to be done on the revolver..

The gas trap system has been used before on revolvers. Jim March has used it quite succesfully on his auto-ejecting Colt SAA. As you can see, his is hardly a sophisticated setup. If you can give me the outside diameter of the Remington barrel, I can do a quick 3D sketch of the muzzle trap. If you want to experiment with the fit and the like, a 3d model could be printed in cheap plastic by Shapeways. They can also do the model in wax, ready for metal casting, or they can just print the design in metal directly.

If you're worried about the whole thing getting too big and bulky, you could opt for a shorter barrel. A 5 1/2 inch barrel looks better anyway in my opinion.. oww, and if you want to 'sportify' the gun, whilst doing a gas trap, it would be a piece of cake to also add barrel ports..

By the way, if you're worried about what to call it, just sick with 'AK58'..
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Old September 18, 2011, 11:02 AM   #105
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Quote:
What you said there Jo got me to thinking. I started thinking of the operation of the Borchardt, Luger and some Pederson toggle actions and how that would help dissipate the rearward force of the piston
The hammer would be cocked on the piston's rearward movement, then the extra force and movement of piston continuing past the point of cocking the hammer would be transferred to the toggle type strut or mini flywheel attached to the hammer bringing that force back around and dissipating it..
Exactly how I envisioned it.


Quote:
The hammer would actually remain connected via linkage to the piston. So when the hammer is cocked, the piston would travel back with the hammer. And when the hammer fell, the piston would travel forward with the hammer so its piston head would be in position in the tube for the gas to act on it.
The forward inertia of the piston would also aid in delaying the action. Think of the heavy bolts used in SMGs firing from an open-bolt. The inertia of the closing bolt must be overcome before the bolt can begin it's rearward action. Granted the mass of a SMG's bolt is much more than a small piston, but the concept remains.

As for the name, we could do the German thing and just sandwich a bunch of stuff together, akin to "Fallschirmjagergewehr 42".....maybe "RemingtonAkinsAutomaticPistola 2011"
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Old September 18, 2011, 11:11 AM   #106
akumabito
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The weight of the piston could easily be increased.. if the connecting rod were threaded, you could simply add a few bolts for increased weight if it were necessary..
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Old September 18, 2011, 12:31 PM   #107
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You know, semi-automatic pistols practically took the world by storm from around 1900 (and the earlier C-96 did fairly well, too) but I wonder what people thought of the Webley-Fosbery when it came out?

Seeing as how the Webley-Fosbery is the apparent inspiration for this project, after a fashion, a few words of comment might be in order. The W-B not only had a recoiling top or upper frame, it retained the break-top arrangement for reloading. Webley was also manufacturing automatic pistols around this time, too, but most of the competition was better, although I have to say there's just no comparison between the Colt Government Model and the Luger. No amount of craftsmanship and clever design can make up for good design. So keep that in mind, even for black powder.

I still think the idea has possibilties. But it's worth mentioning there were a lot of attempts to produce a repeating firearm before metallic cartridges and aside from pepperboxes and revolvers, none came to anything. Percussion caps were a great leap forward, too. Do you suppose anyone thought of a sliding block, harmonica-style action?
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Old September 18, 2011, 12:58 PM   #108
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OK, this is after doing just a little research and in a book, too. Someone did, in fact, try the harmonica repeater, which was an underhammer (and forgive me if it's been mentioned already). It was John Browning's father and the system, according to my old copy of Small Arms of the World, calles it the Jarre system. Sam Houston had one. Apparently the block slid across when the hammer was cocked. Of all the attempts, this one seems to have been the safest, at least, but I suppose it had disadvantages, even compared to a single shot. Multi-barrel guns had always been popular, if heavy.
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Old September 18, 2011, 01:53 PM   #109
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Just giving the harmonica gun some thought here.. I think you can combine the harmonica block with the grooves from the Webley, add the gas cocking mechanism similar to discussed above in the AK revolver and use it to cock back an open bolt mechanism.. The bolt in turn has a little arm that engages the grooves in the harmonica block to keep it in position and make it impossible for it to fall out: bolt moves back, harmonica block moves half a chamber width. Bolt moves forward, harmonica block moves another half chamber, alligning a fresh chamber with the barrel right before the bolt slams the percussion cap. Perfect timing, no misfires..

It could be made very similar to the M3 'Grease gun' of WWII - only with the harmonica block being loaded from the top. Since you can't use the recoil directly to cock the bolt, you'd need a gas tube to go around the harmonica block to the rear of the gun to cock it..

My SketchUp kung-fu is failing me at the moment, but I'll try and do a sketch later on..
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Old September 18, 2011, 02:14 PM   #110
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That AK style looks kind of like a prop from "Firefly"
http://www.imfdb.org/wiki/Firefly
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Old September 18, 2011, 02:19 PM   #111
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That's a good thing, right?
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Old September 18, 2011, 04:56 PM   #112
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Quote:
Just giving the harmonica gun some thought here.. I think you can combine the harmonica block with the grooves from the Webley, add the gas cocking mechanism similar to discussed above in the AK revolver and use it to cock back an open bolt mechanism.. The bolt in turn has a little arm that engages the grooves in the harmonica block to keep it in position and make it impossible for it to fall out: bolt moves back, harmonica block moves half a chamber width. Bolt moves forward, harmonica block moves another half chamber, alligning a fresh chamber with the barrel right before the bolt slams the percussion cap. Perfect timing, no misfires..
Exactly what I was trying to explain a few pages back. You did a much better job describing it than I did. Thanks

BTW, Firefly was a great show. Must have been a bit too original to catch on.
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Old September 19, 2011, 06:08 AM   #113
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I think worries about displacement of the load (the bullet, powder and cap) are probably not warranted, since the block would be moving horizontally and also the shock of firing would not, in theory, be any greater than in a heavily loaded revolver.
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Old September 19, 2011, 06:33 AM   #114
Bill Akins
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Quote:
Akumabito wrote:
I think the 'ak' style would be the most reliable system of them all. I think we should scrap my earlier idea of incorporating the gas piston into the arbor pin.. too much worries about pin diameter, no real method of cushioning the impact, sealing problems, etc.. All of these problems could be overcome, but to make it a reliable system, quite a bit of work would need to be done on the revolver.
I agree. But your earlier idea still has merit. It would take much more work and modification to the revolver to do it, but it still has merit. If for any reason the over the barrel "AK" style gas tube didn't work as well as envisioned, we could always go back to your earlier in the frame gas tube concept. Just as we could go back to my earlier zig zag cylinder concept and see if its recoiling cylinder would move the projectiles forward in the chambers or not.

Quote:
Akumabito wrote:
If you can give me the outside diameter of the Remington barrel, I can do a quick 3D sketch of the muzzle trap. If you want to experiment with the fit and the like, a 3d model could be printed in cheap plastic by Shapeways. They can also do the model in wax, ready for metal casting, or they can just print the design in metal directly.
The battery in my digital micrometer is bad. Need to get a new one. So I can't mic out the outside diameter of the Remington barrel for you right now Akumabito. The design isn't yet ready for making an actual physical mockup just yet. Still several things to be worked out yet.....

1. We need to give the toggle/locomotive train wheel linkage junction at the hammer concept more thought. Remember the piston has to stay perfectly straight for its travel in the gas tube, and the toggle/train wheel linkage joining the piston to the hammer has to be designed so that not only does it cock the hammer, but after the hammer is cocked, the linkage has to be made so that any extra force to the rear is "spun out" by the linkage rotating back forward again.....and the changing height of the hammer traveling in its arc to cock has to be worked out in relation to the linkage too. All those things need to be carefully thought out.

2. One thing that bothers me about this design is that piston coming to the rear right in line with where your eye would be for sighting. If the piston were to break and jump the linkage, it could put the broken jagged end of the piston directly in your eye. Not good. So in designing the toggle link/locomotive train wheel linkage, some sort of metal casing or something in the linkage itself has to act as a shield to stop the piston from ever reaching your face in case a link pin, or linkage strut, or the piston itself ever broke loose. Or the linkage has to be made in such a way that the piston could never break loose. I think both #'s 1. and 2. here require more design thought before moving on to actually making it.

Quote:
Akumabito wrote:
If you're worried about the whole thing getting too big and bulky, you could opt for a shorter barrel. A 5 1/2 inch barrel looks better anyway in my opinion.
I have a short barrel stainless steel 1858 Remington. And it is the adjustable sights version with the dovetails in the rear frame top and dovetail in barrel front that could hold the gas tube. But my barrel is a custom cut job and not standard to the exact 5 1/2 inch short barrel ones manufactured. So I hesitate to use it. I'd like to get kind of a beat up Remy to experiment on.
I need to take the gas tubes off both my MAK90 (semi-auto AK) and my SKS rifles and hold them over the top of my Remy just to get an idea of how they and their gas pistons might possibly be modified/welded to be used for this application......if that is possible at all to use them. Otherwise a whole new gas tube would have to be fabricated.

Quote:
Akumabito wrote:
And if you want to 'sportify' the gun, whilst doing a gas trap, it would be a piece of cake to also add barrel ports.
Do you mean barrel ports or muzzle gas trap ports? I'd rather keep the design so no permanent modifications were done to the frame or barrel itself. I assume you are thinking about anti-muzzle flip gas relief ports or slots made into the top of the gas trap on the muzzle, so that gas expelled upward counteracts muzzle rise. Is that correct? That could be done. But before doing that we should consider this......

We don't yet know what amount of gas force would be needed to push the piston and work the linkage that cocks the hammer. Going along with that, we also do not know how large to make the gas trap's hole to allow gas to go into the tube. Once it was all built, and we determined how far back the piston would have to go to cock the hammer, then we know where on the gas tube to drill a gas relief hole so unnecessary gas and tiny particle can be expelled out of the gas tube. The gas relief hole will have to be at a point where the piston head has to travel rearward first, then after a certain distance the piston head goes past the gas relief hole, which then lowers the pressure against the piston head. But until we know the distance the piston has to travel to cock the hammer, we can't even know where to drill that gas relief hole. And we don't yet know what size diameter hole to use going from the gas trap to the gas tube yet either nor do we yet know what size to drill the further back on the tube gas relief hole either.(the one that vents gas from the tube after the piston head has passed by it).

Putting ports to counteract muzzle flip into the top of the gas trap on the end of the barrel's muzzle (that are forward of where the gas relief hole would be further back on the gas tube).....would not as effectively trap gas in that muzzle area for it to be directed into the gas tube. Since you would lose a lot of gas going upward and out of the gas trap upper ports. So before we tried that, I think we might be better concerned with keeping as much gas in the gas trap as possible to see how much gas we need to use, how large the gas trap hole to the gas tube has to be, where we need to drill a gas relief hole further back on the gas tube so once the piston head passes it the gas will port out of the relief hole.

So although we have a pretty good basic design here now for a semi-auto muzzleloading revolver we still need to look at these....

1. More design thought on toggle/train wheel linkage of piston to hammer with safety in mind to keep a broken part from putting a piston rod in your eye. That we can do in design.

2. The next thing is harder and would have to be done actually experimenting with the system installed on the revolver.....to where gas relief port would have to be drilled on gas tube once piston head passes that point....and what size to drill that gas relief hole. Then determine what size to drill gas hole in gas trap going to gas tube. Probably start out with a very small diameter hole using a moderately heavy powder charge. Then if more gas needed, just enlarge the hole. And do that until we get the system working relatively well with anywhere from 25 to 35 grains of powder with the inertia redirecting toggle/train wheel linkage system spinning out any unneeded force with the heavier powder charges. Also once the system was working,
we could possibly experiment on adjustable upper gas port on the gas trap for decreasing muzzle flip....where the gas ports were able to be adjusted to let out either more or less or even no gas. They could be opened to be used to lessen the gas in the tube if using heavier powder charges, or closed or partially closed if more gas was needed if using a lighter powder charge.

So we aren't ready enough with the design for building a prototype just yet, but we are definitely getting there. Once the MOST IMPORTANT toggle/train wheel linkage and a way to prevent any possible broken loose piston from going in the eye....is completed, then we could actually move on to building the gas tube, hooking up the linkage to the gas tube and hammer....and then work out what size we need on the gas trap to gas tube hole, what size we need on the gas relief port where the piston head passes, and what (if any) anti-muzzle flip gas ports we might want on top of the gas trap....and how to make them adjustable to let out more or less or no gas.



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"This is my Remy and this is my Colt. Remy loads easy and topstrap strong, Colt balances better and never feels wrong. A repro black powder revolver gun, they smoke and shoot lead and give me much fun. I can't figure out which one I like better, they're both fine revolvers that fit in my leather".
"To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target".

Last edited by Bill Akins; September 19, 2011 at 03:43 PM.
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Old September 19, 2011, 06:40 AM   #115
Bill Akins
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Quote:
Bill Akins wrote:
The hammer would actually remain connected via linkage to the piston. So when the hammer is cocked, the piston would travel back with the hammer. And when the hammer fell, the piston would travel forward with the hammer so its piston head would be in position in the tube for the gas to act on it.
Quote:
Jo6pak wrote:
The forward inertia of the piston would also aid in delaying the action. Think of the heavy bolts used in SMGs firing from an open-bolt. The inertia of the closing bolt must be overcome before the bolt can begin it's rearward action. Granted the mass of a SMG's bolt is much more than a small piston, but the concept remains.
Exactly Jo, I couldn't agree more.


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"To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target".
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Old September 19, 2011, 06:43 AM   #116
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Quote:
Blue Train wrote:
Do you suppose anyone thought of a sliding block, harmonica-style action?
Blue Train, take a look at the very first picture in this thread on page one.
I've devoted quite a bit of this thread to discussing harmonica block type actions both those of Jonathan Browning, Captain Nemo inspired harmonica rifles and tripod mounted harmonica block designs of my own. Take a look back a few pages in this thread to see them. I believe the harmonica block is the key element to consider using as an ammunition carrier in any high capacity muzzleloading weapon.


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"To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target".
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Old September 19, 2011, 07:00 AM   #117
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Quote:
Akumabito wrote:
Just giving the harmonica gun some thought here.. I think you can combine the harmonica block with the grooves from the Webley, add the gas cocking mechanism similar to discussed above in the AK revolver and use it to cock back an open bolt mechanism.. The bolt in turn has a little arm that engages the grooves in the harmonica block to keep it in position and make it impossible for it to fall out: bolt moves back, harmonica block moves half a chamber width. Bolt moves forward, harmonica block moves another half chamber, alligning a fresh chamber with the barrel right before the bolt slams the percussion cap. Perfect timing, no misfires..

It could be made very similar to the M3 'Grease gun' of WWII - only with the harmonica block being loaded from the top. Since you can't use the recoil directly to cock the bolt, you'd need a gas tube to go around the harmonica block to the rear of the gun to cock it..

My SketchUp kung-fu is failing me at the moment, but I'll try and do a sketch later on.
That would work, but I think would be needlessly complicated Akumabito. You could just put a straight gear rack on the harmonica block and engage those straight rack gear teeth with a pinion gear that was actuated by the gas piston....to advance the harmonica block. That way no zig zag slots have to be milled into the harmonica block, no reciprocating bolt is necessary either. Just a gas piston or even direct gas impingement actuating a pinion gear to advance the straight rack gear attached to the harmonica block. Which method do you think would be easier to build?

I'd keep the harmonica bloc horizontal rather than feeding vertically thru the weapon for several reasons.....

1. As I envision a 100 shot harmonica block, it would hit the ground if fed vertically and tripod mounted.

2. In order to help support the weight of the harmonica block, I conceived a roller conveyor to help hold the weight of the long harmonica block and also helps roll the harmonica block into the receiver of the weapon. The harmonica block and that roller conveyor needs to be horizontal for this to work. And it has to be attached to a tripod too....



Look forward to seeing more of your sketches Akumabito, you always do a great job on your renderings.


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"This is my Remy and this is my Colt. Remy loads easy and topstrap strong, Colt balances better and never feels wrong. A repro black powder revolver gun, they smoke and shoot lead and give me much fun. I can't figure out which one I like better, they're both fine revolvers that fit in my leather".
"To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target".
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Old September 19, 2011, 04:12 PM   #118
akumabito
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Back to the revolver for a moment, because I think it's now getting more complex than it needs to be..

The over-barrel design has the benefit that the tubing is of greater diameter, so the earlier design 'shock absorber' could be implemented.

Connecting the piston to the hammer is a good idea, but there is no need for a complex linkage: the piston can only travel a set distance, you could add a bump stop so it will not move back any further than you want to. Any remaining force will be absorbed by the bump stop and from there transferred to the frame, not the lock mechanism.

Another idea I just had - if you're worried the hammer might still be moved back too rapidly and violently, there is something else you could do to smoothen the motion; make the connecting rod between the piston and the hammer slightly flexible. A carbon fibre rod would do the trick.
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Old September 20, 2011, 07:39 AM   #119
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Quote:
Akumabito wrote:
Back to the revolver for a moment, because I think it's now getting more complex than it needs to be. The over-barrel design has the benefit that the tubing is of greater diameter, so the earlier design 'shock absorber' could be implemented.
You could be right about it getting overly complex regarding the linkage to the hammer Akumabito. You are right that the over the barrel piston could be plenty large enough to implement your "shock absorber" two piece piston.

Quote:
Akumabito wrote:
Connecting the piston to the hammer is a good idea, but there is no need for a complex linkage: the piston can only travel a set distance, you could add a bump stop so it will not move back any further than you want to. Any remaining force will be absorbed by the bump stop and from there transferred to the frame, not the lock mechanism.
This adds to my reason for it not being ready to physically prototype yet. The piston travel and piston to hammer interface needs more thought. The toggle or locomotive train wheel concept would "spin out" any unnecessary force required to cock the hammer and also allow light powder loads to be used (if the load is at least powerful enough to cock the hammer and operate the linkage) as well as heavy powder loads to be used since the linkage "spins out" and redirects/dissipates any unnecessary force back forward. So you could use it with virtually any powder charge the cylinder would hold. No other design idea that we have discussed thus far except for that one allows for the system to operate using a variety of weak or strong powder charges without changing out springs or having to have an adjustable gas tap.

But perhaps you are correct and there is a simpler design way to do it. Let's try and find one. A regular piston return spring or even your two piece "shock absorber" piston's internal spring and return spring would still be dependent on those springs SET tension. And that tension would dictate what powder charge you could use. And you wouldn't be able to deviate much from that powder charge or the system would not work. Like firing a low powered 9mm cartridge that doesn't have enough power to operate the slide on a standard semi-auto pistol. And conversely you wouldn't want a too hot loaded 9mm cartridge that slams the slide too hard and damages. So by depending exclusively on a piston return spring (or springs with the additional internal piston shock absorber spring) we are limited to using a powder charge only within a certain power range. Nothing wrong with that as long as we stick to that certain range powder charge.

Quote:
Akumabito wrote:
Another idea I just had - if you're worried the hammer might still be moved back too rapidly and violently, there is something else you could do to smoothen the motion; make the connecting rod between the piston and the hammer slightly flexible. A carbon fibre rod would do the trick.
So if we do away with a toggle or locomotive type train wheel linkage concept, what options do we have? A piston coming back straight out the back of the gas tube either attached or not attached to the hammer. And if the piston is not attached to the hammer, the piston return spring brings the piston back forward again after it cocks the hammer. Or if attached to the hammer, the piston's return spring is kept under tension until the hammer falls. We could position the piston so it's rear always rests against the hammer, that way it wouldn't have any air space between it and the hammer so it wouldn't exactly slam into the hammer, but would just push it back, like a Mauser broomhandle bolt coming back to cock the hammer.

But what I am thinking about is what stops the rearward travel of the piston? Just it's return spring? Not good enough for safety with that piston pointed at an eye and someone accidentally maybe using too strong a powder charge. And we can't have it slamming into something to stop any over travel because that would eventually cause stress cracks damage. I guess the piston COULD be made of carbon fiber so it would flex as you suggested, but I'd prefer a design that didn't depend on repeated stresses of flexing a piston.

I guess we could make the rear of the piston kind of big and flat like the rear of a Mauser broomhandle or Jap Nambu bolt, so that if it DID ever come back too far at least it wouldn't be slim and go into an eye like a dull crossbow bolt. But that would increase the weight of the piston. We could also fabricate the gas tube so the if the piston did go too far, a decreased diameter gas tube past a certain point would bind and hopefully hold the piston. But if the piston head broke off and the rest of the piston rod went rearward, we still have nothing to stop it except its return spring. And....perhaps that would be enough.

We know we can make a piston fly to the rear on this muzzleloader revolver. And with factory cartridge ammunition that is already loaded with a powder charge designed to operate a semi-auto pistol....that usually isn't a problem. But each time someone loads a muzzleloader, they, (not some factory), dictate how much powder charge goes into that chamber. I'm just trying to figure a design that is as safe as possible using anywhere from a 25 grain to a 35 grain black powder equivalent powder charge in a .44 caliber 1858 Remington revolver.

That's why I thought a toggle/locomotive wheel type of piston to hammer linkage would come in real handy being able to handle practically any powder charge the chamber can hold, while at the same time it redirects (and so doing dissipates) the rearward force and movement of the piston back forward again. I admit the toggle/locomotive wheel type of linkage could be a little complicated....but then again perhaps not. I haven't had sufficient time to properly study it yet. Again, any system that does not redirect or dissipate unnecessary force will be operationally dependent on a specific powder load range. Or else you have to have an adjustable gas hole on your gas tube or else you have to change piston return springs.

Which are two other ways to cut down on the rearward force of the piston so a piston return spring could maybe handle it without any other help. The question is, how do we know how much force is reduced by an adjustable gas tap hole or different tension piston return spring? We don't without experimenting with them using a variety of different powder loads. So that could be one possible answer. Make a gas tube so that the gas tube is a sufficient diameter for how far the piston head has to travel. Then lessen that diameter beyond where the piston head has to travel. That way the piston cannot over travel and if it tried to, it would bind up in the gas tube, keeping it out of someone's eye (as long as the piston head didn't break off).

Then the tension of the piston return spring has to be ascertained so that the spring allows the piston to travel just far enough to cock the hammer, but not so far that it binds the piston head in the decreased diameter section of the gas tube where the smaller diameter piston rod rides. (Piston rod is smaller in diameter than piston head).

One way to test that without binding up the piston, would be to use a maximum 35 grain powder charge and start off with a VERY heavy piston return spring that would for sure only allow the piston to travel a short distance. Then use decreasing tension piston return springs until just the right combination was found that let the piston come back just so far, without coming back too far. But again, then you are limited to system operation only within a certain powder load range. And nothing wrong with that though as long as you stick to that range. Or else change your piston return spring to one with more or less tension depending on what powder charge you wanted to use.

So let set aside the toggle/locomotive wheel type of linkage for a while (we can always come back to it), and look at decreasing the diameter of the gas tube beyond where the piston head has to travel. And also look for ways to make the gas tap adjustable as simply as possible.

Perhaps one way would be gas ports drilled into the top of the muzzle gas trap so that those holes were also threaded so we could close them off or open them up by simply removing screws from them, thus adjusting the gas pressure in the trap. Or perhaps a very small air compressor or steam adjustable pressure valve on the gas tube.

Or we could just chuck the whole adjustable gas trap thing and make the gas tube like I said.....only a large enough diameter going back for how far the piston head has to travel, then the gas tube diameter gets smaller and only the rear smaller diameter of the piston rod can pass through that part. That way the piston can never fly out the back of the gas tube (unless the piston head breaks off). And then use nothing else other than piston return springs with different springs with different tensions for whatever powder charge we wanted to load. That would certainly un-complicate things.

I'm thinking something like a SKS type gas port, tube and piston as a starting point. Although with provision for a piston return spring inside the gas tube instead of a spring loaded tappet like the SKS rifle has. But even if that would work, we still don't know if the cylinder pawl and the ratchet on the cylinder's rear would take the stress. Which in that case might benefit by Akumabito's shock absorbing piston to slow the action down and relieve stress on the pawl and ratchet. But then we would not be able to use a SKS gas tube but would have to make one a larger diameter to accommodate a shock absorbing piston that would be large enough for its internal shock absorbing parts to not be fragile .

Thoughts?






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"This is my Remy and this is my Colt. Remy loads easy and topstrap strong, Colt balances better and never feels wrong. A repro black powder revolver gun, they smoke and shoot lead and give me much fun. I can't figure out which one I like better, they're both fine revolvers that fit in my leather".
"To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target".

Last edited by Bill Akins; September 20, 2011 at 08:33 AM.
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Old September 20, 2011, 08:42 AM   #120
akumabito
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I was right in the middle of writing a reply and doing some sketches of an easy adjustable gas trap when another idea hit me, making everything I had typed seem rather obsolete.. so, scratch that, here's another idea:

A simple pressure regulator and a dump valve.

You'd need to know the force required to cock the hammer for this to work. You could set up the design to only allow the passing of the volume and pressure of gas you'd need, everything else gets vented in a safe direction.

This way, the minimum amount of stress is placed on the moving parts of the gun. You'll know exactly how much gas enters the system, and it'll be consistent, no matter what load you use.

If the load you use happens to be too light, the auto-cocking system won't act. Anything over, and it should work like a dream, imparting the exact same force on the gun's parts no matter how much powder you use or how heavy your ammo is..

This should eliminate all need for complex linkages and shock absorbers and the like..

Back to the drawing board, let's se if I can fit all that in a 1 inch OD tube.. Some months ago, I worked on aan airgun design, let's see how much of that I can canibalize and convert..
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Old September 20, 2011, 09:50 AM   #121
akumabito
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Ok, this one needs a little explaining I think.. I'll start at the bottom. Bottom left is the collar that fits around the barrel of the revolver. Right after that is the gas trap - the diameter is just a bit more than the weapon's caliber. From here, some of the gas is redirected to the top.

Top right is the flow adjuster / gas vent / valve seat. Essentially a threaded piece of metal that fits into the gas tube. Screwing it in any further, reduces the size of the gas intake, and thus the amount of gas available to do work. It pretty much only has to be dialed in once, after that you could use some loctite or something to keep it in place.This piece also has vents, which redirect unused gasses back out to the front of the gun.

Then we have the regulator itself. Essentially just a hollow valve and a spring. Some O-rings for a tighter seal, and that's pretty much all there is to it.

Here's how it works: high-pressure gas enters via the gas trap and enters the high-pressure chamber. Due to the high volume of gas, pressure builds quickly. It'll force its way through one of two pathways: Through the valve, to the low pressure chamber, which is held open by the spring. As soon as the gasses start to amass here, they will want to act on the large valve area on this end. Once pressure in this low-pressure end has built up, it'll push against the head of the valve, overcome the tension of the spring and force the valve shut, thus limiting the gas to a certain volume and pressure, which ought to be safe enough to make the gun work as intended.

Meanwhile, in the high-pressure chamber, the gas will want to get out ASAP, which it can through the holes in the front. Strictly speaking, these aren't even necessary, as once the valve closes, the high pressure gases could escape via the same path thy entered. It might keep the valve from being overwhelmed though..

Anyhow, from there, the safe low-pressure gas then acts on the piston, which is linked to the hammer and that's where the magic happens.


EDIT: by the way, if you could tell me how much force is needed to cock the hammer (at the point where you want to connect the hammer to the piston assembly), and how far back it has to travel, I am pretty sure I could come up with the exact numbers for the volume of gas needed, as well as the required pressure, and with that, calculate the spring tension needed for the regulator to work properly..

Oh, and I did a quick mockup of what it could look like..


Last edited by akumabito; September 20, 2011 at 10:15 AM.
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Old September 20, 2011, 10:59 PM   #122
Bill Akins
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That is a great idea Akumabito. It solves several problems.

1. It allows unneeded pressure/force to dissipate without a toggle/locomotive wheel type of linkage.

2. It allows just about any grain powder charge the chamber of the cylinder can take to be used.

I like it!

I just have several concerns.

My first concern is this:

The entire valve area and the gas trap area itself has to be able to be easily disassembled for cleaning. Because although some black powder substitutes are much less fouling than black powder, they still have a degree of fouling as does even modern smokeless powder. So easy disassembly for cleaning has to be considered. Here's what I'm thinking....

In keeping with simply having an add on gas tube and hammer, (with minimal internal mods to the lockwork so that the hammer stays back while the trigger is still depressed).......so that except for that lockwork change the muzzleloading revolver stays unmodified, we have to find a way to secure the gas tube over the top of the barrel without modifying the revolver. There are several ways we could do that. One way would be to only use a target sighted 1858 Remington revolver. So that we can utilize the dovetail slots cut into the top of the frame and barrel (for the target style sights)....and by removing those sights, use those dovetail slots to tap a gas tube sideways onto the top of the revolver.

Another way would be that since the 1858 Remington revolver has an 8 sided (octagon) shaped barrel, that we have octagon shaped rings (like a scope ring) attached to the gas tube that then are clamped to the barrel in two locations and the rammer notched slightly to accommodate them. That version could be used for standard 1858 Remington revolvers that do not have the target sight dovetails. My only fear about that version, is that unless the octagon rings were VERY secure, that the whole gas tube assembly MIGHT blow forward on the barrel. But with your gas pressure relief holes in the front of your adjustable gas relief valve, that might not be a concern.

Anyway....HOWEVER we do it, it is a given that we first have to attach the gas tube to the revolver in such a way as it doesn't permanently modify the revolver in that attachment.

Now since your adjustable valve needs to be able to be easily disassembled for cleaning, we have to be able to do that without removing the entire gas tube assembly from the revolver. So I am thinking of something like this.....

Since the gas trap is roughly a short "L" shaped piece extending downward from the upper gas tube to be in front of the barrel's muzzle, how about we make that "L" shaped gas trap piece where it completely unscrews from the rest of the gas tube proper while the rest of the gas tube stays attached to the revolver. Then from the back or front of that removed gas trap, we can also unscrew the entire self adjusting gas valve assembly for easy cleaning.
Or alternately, we don't have to actually remove the gas trap since that could be cleaned with a larger diameter brush than the barrel uses.....and instead of removing the entire gas trap, we are able to simply remove the adjustable plug you showed in your rendering to be able to remove the entire gas valve for cleaning. Would that plug you have at the very front of the gas tube allow for the complete removal of the gas valve and spring for easy cleaning? If it does, problem solved with cleaning the valve and the gas trap could be integral with the gas tube and not have to removed. That would also enable the gas trap to fit OVER the end of the barrel since it wouldn't have to be unscrewed from the gas tube.

But I am still wondering if perhaps the gas trap SHOULD be able to be unscrewed from the rest of the gas tube. Because....if it can't be, then how do we fit that gas trap OVER the end of the barrel while trying to attach the gas tube into dovetail slots sideways? See what I mean? If the gas trap fits OVER the end of the barrel, then we can't gently tap the dovetails built into the gas tube into the dovetail sight slots on the top of the frame and barrel. In that case if the gas tube DID fit OVER The end of the barrel, our only option of attaching the gas tube to the revolver would be with the octagon rings I mentioned earlier.

Could you render up something showing the best of the above keeping in mind that if the gas trap goes OVER the muzzle rather than just in front of it, that it probably could not then be unscrewed from the main gas tube and also we couldn't utilize existing target sight dovetails?

My second concern is this:

Your self adjusting gas valve would be great for trapping just the necessary required gas amount and force to cock the hammer. So that solves the force problem. But what about the SPEED of what is now a decreased gas force? I am wondering if we need to be concerned with that speed even though the brute force is controlled and diminished? Or do you think I am overly concerned and that the piston return spring would resist and slow the speed of the piston down enough to prevent the hammer cocking at too high a speed? Actually it's not the hammer cocking at too high a speed that is really my concern, it is the pawl attached to the hammer that engages the ratchet on the back of the cylinder that concerns me, being operated at a higher speed than it was designed for. I am also concerned that with a high speed, that the bolt that locks the cylinder would not have time to drop into place before the cylinder's slot over traveled that bolt. Might have to increase the bolt spring's tension, which would also increase the trigger tension since they are two tines of the same spring. Or even possibly make them separate tines not attached to each other in one spring. Anyway, the gas force would now be lessened, but the SPEED still concerns me.

The reason I attached the piston to the hammer earlier was because of the toggle/locomotive wheel type of linkage. But if we didn't use the toggle/locomotive wheel linkage, and instead used your self adjusting gas valve (which I like better) there would be no reason to attach the hammer to the piston. Then the hammer's added upward projection would simply always rest (when hammer down) against the rear of the piston and since there wouldn't be any air space between the piston and the hammer's upward projection, there would be no slamming effect. The piston would just always remain in contact with the (modified) hammer, and push the hammer back just like this C96 Broomhandle Mauser's bolt pushes the hammer back with no slamming effect.....



We could still have a nice little area on the back of the piston looking like a luger toggle grip, or we could just have a square or round section on the pistons rear always resting against the projection on the hammer. Like on the Broomhandle or Nambu. Not only would it look good, but it would add an extra margin of safety in case the piston rod ever broke and flew rearward. It also would allow you to either cock the hammer as normally with the thumb, or you could grasp the luger looking or Broomhandle looking or Nambu looking piece on the end of the piston and draw that to the rear thus cocking the hammer too.




.
__________________
"This is my Remy and this is my Colt. Remy loads easy and topstrap strong, Colt balances better and never feels wrong. A repro black powder revolver gun, they smoke and shoot lead and give me much fun. I can't figure out which one I like better, they're both fine revolvers that fit in my leather".
"To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target".

Last edited by Bill Akins; September 20, 2011 at 11:18 PM.
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Old September 21, 2011, 06:01 AM   #123
akumabito
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No time to make a detailed post right now, but when dialing down the pressure significantly, there's a LOT that could be done to slow down the movement, right down to the point where a full cycle could take seconds. Just take a look at pneumatic sliding doors for instance.. Different layout and purpose, but same principles apply..

I'll give it some thought today, and I think I can come up with some good stuff..
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Old September 21, 2011, 07:53 AM   #124
Bill Akins
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Quote:
Akumabito wrote:
there's a LOT that could be done to slow down the movement, right down to the point where a full cycle could take seconds.
That's right. You just jogged my memory. Hiram Maxim had a device like that on his earliest 1880's machine guns. Where he could fire one round, then walk away from the gun and have it fire seconds later or even minutes later on its own. I think he was using some sort of adjustable hydraulic system that tripped the trigger whenever he set it to go off. I remember reading that it surprised a military officer observing it that it could do that. It was discontinued on later models. Sounds like the same principle you were talking about of storing energy hydraulically and releasing it slower.


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"This is my Remy and this is my Colt. Remy loads easy and topstrap strong, Colt balances better and never feels wrong. A repro black powder revolver gun, they smoke and shoot lead and give me much fun. I can't figure out which one I like better, they're both fine revolvers that fit in my leather".
"To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target".
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Old September 21, 2011, 11:10 AM   #125
Stephanie B
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It'd be ugly, but if you used a piston driving a small rotating wheel, with the gun's mechanism being operating by a connecting rod coming off the wheel, you could align the piston in almost any direction. That way, if the thing were to come apart, it would blow away from the shooter.

Quote:
the operation of a steam locomotive's strut and wheels and how when the straight strut went back it turned the wheel a certain distance, then the inertia and counterweight on the wheel made it go the rest of the way around the circle.
Well, not exactly. Those pistons were double-acting, so they had power strokes in both directions of travel. The action of the piston on the other side of the locomotive was offset by 90 degrees, so that when the piston on one side was at either end of its travel, the other one was midway. (Three-cylinder locomotives had their piston-actions offset by 60 degrees.)

Anyway, you probably knew all that, but other folks might not have.
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