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Firearms


GianniVacca

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The first derringers were sold in the latter half of the century, from around 1866+.

Flintlocks were old-tech, and had been long since replaced by the matchlock. You may wish to devise your own stats for matchlocks if you feel that the differences are significant enough to warrant different stats.

The Colt Revolver showed up around 1835 or so. It is a medium revolver. There were even flintlock revolvers a decade or so earlier. Other variant revolvers would either be light or medium.

Bolt-action rifles showed up at the beginning of the century, and played a strong role in the Civil War.

Muskets were on their way to being obsolete, but still saw plenty of use.

Shotguns (single-barreled) were used throughout the period.

I have very little doubt that other forum-members will be able to provide more in-depth information if that isn't sufficient.

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I don't have my copy of BRP yet, but if there's a listing for air guns, those were around for centuries, I believe. And they were great for the settlers to use when hunting small game. Napoleon Bonaparte outlawed them because they supposedly made good sniping weapons!

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Well, my FLGS is supposed to have copies of BRP this coming week, so I'm still holding off on getting the PDF. If they don't have it come Wednesday (July 9th) then I guess I go with the PDF.

Now, as for this topic? Is there a more-or-less generic listing of firearms? Or specific weapons?

Is there a difference, say between a Kentucky rifle (think Davy Crockett) and a "Brown Bess" 1816 musket? Or do both fall under a generic flintlock, black powder category?

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Bolt-action rifles showed up at the beginning of the century, and played a strong role in the Civil War.

This is true. The early models tended to be single shot though, and mainly available in Europe, though some were used as sharp-shooter weapons in the US Civil War. In the states, the drop-breech lever action tended to fill this space, also as a single shot.

SDLeary

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Now, as for this topic? Is there a more-or-less generic listing of firearms? Or specific weapons?

My problem is as follows: there is this long list of firearms, but it doesn't say, for each weapon, at what period of time the weapon is available. And since I am definitely not knowledgeable wrt firearms, I am at a loss to equip PCs and NPCs in a historically accurate way for a given period of time :(

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Flintlocks were old-tech, and had been long since replaced by the matchlock. You may wish to devise your own stats for matchlocks if you feel that the differences are significant enough to warrant different stats.

Wrong way round. Matchlocks required the musketeer (or whomever) to carry a burning match which he applied to the pan to ignite the powder. Flintlocks, using a striking flint or similar material to produce a spark, replaced Matchlocks starting (in Europe) around the mid 17th century.

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Is there a difference, say between a Kentucky rifle (think Davy Crockett) and a "Brown Bess" 1816 musket? Or do both fall under a generic flintlock, black powder category?

I'm due to get my copy of the rules next week so can't reference directly but there should be a massive difference between a Kentucky Rifle and a Brown Bess musket. The Brown Bess wasn't rifled and was very innacurate. The Kentucky (and other) rifles was many times more accurate, had a longer range but took longer to reload. There were actually several types of Long Rifle used on the US frontier but they all had similar charateristics and none of them (to my knowledge) could be equipped with a bayonet. The latter was a requirement of the British Army Baker Rifle developed as a result of the British Army's experiences facing American minutemen in the War of Independance.

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My thanks to those that replied to my questions. I was fairly aware of the differences between the Kentucky rifle and Brown Bess musket, which was why I used them to try and get an idea how much depth BRP had in seperating black powder firearms. Alairduk, you covered the key differences between those weapons quite well. Does BRP?

The lack of dates for weapons, though that can vary so much depending on location and circumstances, is regrettable.

Oh, and I think Jason was wanting to say "percussion caps" perhaps? More American Civil War period?

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Wrong way round. Matchlocks required the musketeer (or whomever) to carry a burning match which he applied to the pan to ignite the powder. Flintlocks, using a striking flint or similar material to produce a spark, replaced Matchlocks starting (in Europe) around the mid 17th century.

Drat it... I often get the two confused.

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Alairduk, you covered the key differences between those weapons quite well. Does BRP?

The lack of dates for weapons, though that can vary so much depending on location and circumstances, is regrettable.

For reasons of space, I decided to keep the firearms section short and genericized.

Future setting-specific expansions will definitely incorporate expanded lists of weaponry where appropriate. Interplanetary covers a wide range of firearms available on Earth from the period of the 1880s to the late 1930s, as well as alien hand-to-hand and missile weapons from each planet.

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Wrong way round. Matchlocks required the musketeer (or whomever) to carry a burning match which he applied to the pan to ignite the powder. Flintlocks, using a striking flint or similar material to produce a spark, replaced Matchlocks starting (in Europe) around the mid 17th century.

I think he was thinking of caplock/percussion lock.

SDLeary

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One date to keep in mind for fire arms is 1854 , the year the Crimean war start and the Minie ball came to the world attention. the minie ball was invented some time during the 1840's but I read the French considered it top secret til the Crimean War ,where it was used for the first time in a major War

Before the Minie ball rifle where slower to load, after the Minie ball , it took about the same time as a smoothbore musket.

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Er... So any suggestions as to what I could use for a 19th century colonial campaign? in terms of weapons available to the Europeans vs weapons available to the natives.

If you are starting at the beginning of the century then use the listing for Rifle, Musket. Further in, I would modify this to attacks at 1/3, as cartridges came into use. Around the middle of the century Rifle, Bolt-Action would be a good choice for Europe, but the US didn't adopt these till near the end of the century.

SDLeary

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US did not use bolt action till end of century true. But the US did use lots of Lever action rifles such as the Spencer, Henry and Winchester starting in 1860.

I can fire faster with a lever action rifle then I can with a bolt action rifle , but bolt action is more sturdy then lever action.

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US did not use bolt action till end of century true. But the US did use lots of Lever action rifles such as the Spencer, Henry and Winchester starting in 1860.

I can fire faster with a lever action rifle then I can with a bolt action rifle , but bolt action is more sturdy then lever action.

Only in certain units, and then it was ususally purchased by the trooper themselves. Certain units were outfitted later on with Henry and Spencer lever action (Rifle, sporting??), but by far the Sharps Rifle (single shot, drop breech) and Carbine were the weapon of issue.

THe Sharps, because of caliber, I would class with Rifle, Musket in the rule book (yes, even though its a percussion cap), but would adjust the number of attacks to 1/3 or even 1/2, and increase range to 100.

SDLeary

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Er... So any suggestions as to what I could use for a 19th century colonial campaign? in terms of weapons available to the Europeans vs weapons available to the natives.

Well, what year, or at least decade of the 19th century are we talking about? What part of the world?

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Only in certain units, and then it was ususally purchased by the trooper themselves. Certain units were outfitted later on with Henry and Spencer lever action (Rifle, sporting??), but by far the Sharps Rifle (single shot, drop breech) and Carbine were the weapon of issue.

This is true of the US Army throughout the latter half of the 19th century, due to some unfortunate thinking by desk generals. However, lever action rifles were extremely common amongst everyone else.

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This is true of the US Army throughout the latter half of the 19th century, due to some unfortunate thinking by desk generals. However, lever action rifles were extremely common amongst everyone else.
The Spencer and other rifle where taken away from the troops in 1873 and replaced with the single shot Trapdoor Springfield .

this was a muzzle loading Springfield converted to a breech loader by the Allen patent. The reason was economy as it thought the troops would waste ammo if they had a repeating rifle.

BTW at little Big Horn the US Cavalry was armed with Trapdoor Springfield's, while the Sioux had a large number of repeating rifles.

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The Spencer and other rifle where taken away from the troops in 1873 and replaced with the single shot Trapdoor Springfield .

this was a muzzle loading Springfield converted to a breech loader by the Allen patent. The reason was economy as it thought the troops would waste ammo if they had a repeating rifle.

BTW at little Big Horn the US Cavalry was armed with Trapdoor Springfield's, while the Sioux had a large number of repeating rifles.

In fairness, the advantage of the Springfields was a much better range, which in theory kept the natives at bay. There are questions about the rifle heating up from repeated shots and jamming though.

Custer was the victim of his own arrogance, incompentence or cowardice of a couple of his officers, and maybe the inferior weapon under the circumstances of Little Big Horn.

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