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Old 01-08-2020, 09:09 PM   #11
Agemegos
 
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Default Re: High/ultra tech sights/accessories on muzzle-loaders

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Originally Posted by evileeyore View Post
A picatinny rail is a standardized mounting rail for modern firearm accessories.
I've never seen or used one. I have no idea how complicated they are or how precisely they have to fit. I can't guess whether one could be made with the techology of England in 1830.
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Old 01-08-2020, 09:32 PM   #12
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Default Re: High/ultra tech sights/accessories on muzzle-loaders

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Originally Posted by Agemegos View Post
I've never seen or used one. I have no idea how complicated they are or how precisely they have to fit. I can't guess whether one could be made with the techology of England in 1830.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Picatinny_rail

They are not at all complicated but they do need to fit well enough to use interchangeable parts.
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Old 01-08-2020, 11:04 PM   #13
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Default Re: High/ultra tech sights/accessories on muzzle-loaders

Most modern in-line hunting muzzle loaders are fitted with a nice optical scope. No reason a 1800's era rifle wouldn't benefit from a modern passive optical scope. An 1800's pistol might well be more useful with a red-dot type sight.

Once you have the mechanical mounts in place, price would be the limiting factor on what optics(passive or active) a shooter/sniper could install.

For many applications, a nice night scope would be a big upgrade for a sniper in such a world. The single shot limitations of a muzzleloader might not be much of a limitation in a shoot then vanish into the night scenario. Especially if a night scope allowed a 200~300 yard or longer shot.
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Old 01-09-2020, 12:03 AM   #14
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Default Re: High/ultra tech sights/accessories on muzzle-loaders

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Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Picatinny_rail

They are not at all complicated but they do need to fit well enough to use interchangeable parts.
So would you say that an imported one would be practicable, but that a locally-made one would be pretty dodgy? Interchangeable parts became an industrial reality only about the time that caplock muzzleloaders started to be replaced by revolvers.

Picatinny rail is for giving yourself a choice of what accessories to mount, right? Or to make it possible to remove delicate accessories for safe storage and transport?

Supposing that we do have a double-barrelled rifled caplock pistol with a single-set trigger, made to fire carefully cast and selected Minié bullets — what things might we want to clamp to its picatinny rail? Is it inherently accurate enough that we get an advantage out of a red-dot sight, or is a front bead realistically all that is worth mounting on it?
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Last edited by Agemegos; 01-09-2020 at 04:31 AM. Reason: typos
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Old 01-09-2020, 05:40 AM   #15
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Default Re: High/ultra tech sights/accessories on muzzle-loaders

'Accessory Rail' is simply the standard of mounting accessories.

All firearms subscribing to the concept can use all attachments subscribing to the concept.

Before it's introduction, most accessories were made for specific firearms such as "Scope for Kalashnikov Rifles" or "Foregrip Light for H&K MP5" etc. By making attachments universal, you do not need to stick to a single platform, so you can just produce 1 product that reaches infinite audience, rather than audience of one type of gun only.

Attachment-wise etc, I would've used locally made optical sight. The tools and machinery usually can provide a scope with solid, if fixed, magnification, while TL7 concepts allow them to gather light to cancel out darkness penalties and have lit up reticles for night shooting.

Another thing is a folding bipod, which should be doable without advances in machinery. For most real life TL5 and TL6, bipods were either just shooting sticks or reserved for MGs, so introduction of smaller folding bipod as a concept can help the gunfighter marksman.

But most importantly, since a single shot musket that reloads by next christmas is not a gun you want to spend all of your inheritance on, the TL8 development worth importing is the quick detach mount for picatinny rails.

In short, it's a device that enables you to quickly attach and detach attachments from your rifle by the mean of a clasp. Usually you need a screwdriver and some time to do so. I believe it cannot be produced locally because the mount must be able to hold 'zero' - alignment of sight's point of aim with weapon's point of shooting. Without proper 'zero', which happens when scope doesnt point in the right place, the gun fires not where you point.

As such, an imported set of quick detach adapters allows the shooter to make his shot, spend a few ready maneuvers detaching the accessories off the musket and then running off/attaching them to a different gun/pocketting them and engaging in melee.
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Old 01-09-2020, 06:23 AM   #16
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Default Re: High/ultra tech sights/accessories on muzzle-loaders

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Originally Posted by Agemegos View Post
Picatinny rail is for giving yourself a choice of what accessories to mount, right? Or to make it possible to remove delicate accessories for safe storage and transport?
Yes. Yes.

Quote:
Supposing that we do have a double-barrelled rifled caplock pistol with a single-set trigger, made to fire carefully cast and selected Minié bullets — what things might we want to clamp to its picatinny rail?
Under barrel rail: Flashlight, or Reddot laser, or bayonet.

I'm sure there are other suggestions.

Quote:
Is it inherently accurate enough that we get an advantage out of a red-dot sight, or is a front bead realistically all that is worth mounting on it?
Those aren't mutually exclusive options. Even if the pistol isn't accurate enough to benefit largely from scopes or sights, a reddot helps when firing without aiming by simply helping to better "aim" at your target, so yeah, I'd say it does benefit.
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Old 01-09-2020, 07:45 AM   #17
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Default Re: High/ultra tech sights/accessories on muzzle-loaders

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Originally Posted by Agemegos View Post
In those circumstances, what sights and accessories might you have fitted to your Springfield Model 1861 (or equivalent) or your double-barrelled rifled caplock pistols with hair triggers? Is there something nifty that was invented recently but that could be made with TL5 tools and methods? Would you attach an imported optical sight, night-vision, or laser sight?
The thing that can be made readily with TL5 tools and methods and is useful for sharpshooters is a bipod. That gives automatic bracing for a prone shooter; they aren't useful to standing shooters in close formation, because they'd need legs 4-5 feet long, rather than about a foot, and those would get in the way terribly.

An optical sight is useful on any weapon that, in GURPS terms, has Acc 2 or better, and where aiming for several seconds is realistic. At GURPS TL5, that means sharpshooters.

Picatinny rail, or other interchangeable mounting systems, are useful when a shooter has a choice of multiple accessories to mount; making an optical sight detachable and re-attachable is always useful for preventing damage in handling. It's important that the detach/reattach system maintains the relative position of gun and sight very accurately, as otherwise you have to re-adjust the sight, which takes time and trial shots, and isn't practical in the middle of a battle. This need for precision is why optical sights did not become widely used until GURPS TL6.

If the other side knows what a laser sight is, using them will have psychological value, even if the guns and fitting arrangements aren't precise enough for them to help with long-range shooting.
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Old 01-09-2020, 08:27 AM   #18
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Default Re: High/ultra tech sights/accessories on muzzle-loaders

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For import, proper reflex sights, as well as scopes, are likely (while locally-produced firearms aren't going to be as accurate as modern weapons, they'll still likely be accurate enough to get use out of some zoom). Hunters may get good use out of night sights/scopes. Targeting lasers strike me as unlikely - they're more useful when you don't have time to properly aim, but with muzzleloaders you pretty much always want to aim (as you are unlikely to get a second shot), and giving your target an increased chance to avoid the shot is a bad idea. If there are any issues getting reflex sights past space customs, however, targeting lasers could be a good alternative (although they'll be separated into a laser pointer and some device to connect it to the weapon).
Reflex sights will need to be imported, as they require a compact and robust source of high intensity light (such as a LED) and a compact power source (such as a modern battery), and probably won't be in much demand when maximum hit chances matter more than being roughly on-target very fast.

Telescopic sights will be in demand, but are outside local production abilities - people have been making the things since the late 19th century, but they weren't particularly good even in WWII, and that was about the earliest they were really worth using.

Quote:
Outside of sights, rifle slings are likely (you want all the bonuses you can get when you've only got one shot), but can probably be produced locally.
Slings have been around for a very long time. Modern slings, designed for shooting more than carrying and so on are useful today mainly because the rifles are smaller and lighter, and because long route marches aren't common. If most of your time with your rifle is going to be spent marching or walking from point A to point B, and not in a tactical environment, you want a sling that's good for carrying the rifle on your shoulder, more than one that's perfect for bracing.

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Suppressors, compensators, and flash hiders are unlikely to be available for the weapons, although a decent gunsmith might be able to get those designed for similar calibers to work for local weapons. Muzzle weights, despite being TL7 in Tactical Shooting, should probably be producible locally (one of those "high TL concepts that would be doable at low TL's").
Any of these could be made locally. However, the compensator isn't really needed, and the flash-hider irrelevant if black powder is in use (all that smoke can't be hidden, and there's not that much flash). A suppressor might be useful, though all that smoke makes hiding the fact a gun was fired hard, so most likely it's not.

Quote:
It's in High Tech as the Accessory Rail, page 161. It's noted as TL7, but I suspect it would be doable at TL5 or so; if your firearms are standardized enough that identical models can use each other's bullets (as opposed to the user needing to cast his own bullets), I suspect you have the sort of precision needed to be able to make rails. Whether there's a real market for it may be a different question (those shooters who import fancy accessories may be well-served enough by just having their local gunsmith install the accessories).
Unless you intended to change the accessory load-out of your weapon a fair bit, a rail or rails is unnecessary and just added weight. As old-style rifles were pretty heavy anyway, I can't see this being popular, except perhaps with the fashion-sensitive if it gets promoted as the 'latest and greatest' from off-world.
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Old 01-09-2020, 08:31 AM   #19
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Default Re: High/ultra tech sights/accessories on muzzle-loaders

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Originally Posted by MrFix View Post
Before it's introduction, most accessories were made for specific firearms such as "Scope for Kalashnikov Rifles" or "Foregrip Light for H&K MP5" etc. By making attachments universal, you do not need to stick to a single platform, so you can just produce 1 product that reaches infinite audience, rather than audience of one type of gun only.
This is only true of scopes for military weapons. Civilian rifles (and some pistols) have been tapped for standard scope rings for decades, and any normal 1"/25mm diameter scope could be mounted on them by the owner. Any competent gunsmith could tap a rifle that wasn't without trouble.
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Old 01-09-2020, 08:37 AM   #20
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Default Re: High/ultra tech sights/accessories on muzzle-loaders

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Originally Posted by Agemegos View Post
In those circumstances, what sights and accessories might you have fitted to your Springfield Model 1861 (or equivalent) or your double-barrelled rifled caplock pistols with hair triggers? Is there something nifty that was invented recently but that could be made with TL5 tools and methods? Would you attach an imported optical sight, night-vision, or laser sight?
A lot of this depends on the planned use.

A dueling pistol probably benefits from a laser sight.

A sniper's rifle with a (possibly nightvision) scope is pretty nasty as long as it has some acc.

With modern tech, it might be possible to design a cardboard cartridge you could fill with corned powder and a minnie ball that would significantly reduce reloading times on a muzzle loading caplock. This would be my goal if I was outfitting TL 4-5 troops.

If you can import machined pipes you can make a pretty good breech loader out of them if that is not rejecting the premise. Combine with cardboard cartridges for a major gun tech upgrade.

Chemical feed stocks for smokeless powder become interesting if you have that, as fire rate has increased enough that black powder fouling is a major issue. This is getting pretty close to outright bootstrapping to late TL5 though.

For sideways thinking, you can import remote surveillance camera with servo mounts you can probably re-purpose one of the servo outputs to fire your firearm or (set off an explosive) remotely.
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