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Old 06-24-2019, 08:15 PM   #11
copeab
 
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Default Re: [BS] Lack of Fossil Fuel and Firearm Manufacturing

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Originally Posted by Sorenant View Post
Are automatic guns still a good idea if you can't mass produce ammo?
They aren't a good idea if you are using black powder, as they will foul quickly. Mechanical automatics (like a Gatling) is less of an issue as you can muscle the cam system through most fouling, although accuracy will still drop.

Troops are better off with manual repeaters (bolt or lever) with second-line troops getting breechloaders, at least until you have smokeless powder.


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Sprinkly some magic on the issues real caseless ammo has and it might make manufacturing easier.
Two problems magic may not be able to help are cookoffs and extracting a dud in a self-loading or automatic weapon.

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I'm really liking the idea of hexagonal rifles shooting caseless ammo, it's pretty wild.
If you don't want metallic cartridges, rocketball ammo (as used in the Volcanics) and paper cartridges (as used in needle-fire guns) are alternatives.
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Old 06-25-2019, 08:08 PM   #12
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Default Re: [BS] Lack of Fossil Fuel and Firearm Manufacturing

I was reading some old quora/stackexchange threads with similar question and apparently lack of fossil fuel implies lack of limestones, which would affect the world quite a lot. Coupled to a few replies I received here that it would not stop industrialization, I'm thinking the premise is pointless and only serves to add an extra layer of complications.

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Originally Posted by Rupert View Post
Well, once you have enough power, you can make liquid fuels from biomass, allowing for more portable steam engines and also internal combustion engines.
Steam engines don't imply steampunk. Steam was common in ships until after WWII, and it's still how coal powerplants turn the coal into electricity (and nuclear powerplants are steam engines).
Regardless of existence of fossil fuel, I think you make a good point. The Mana Engines I mentioned before could be, say, a steam engine powered by fire magic/elemental instead of coal. Given how technological knowledge from Earth are introduced, mana engines like above could be the alternate path taken by Yrth after acquiring steam engines while in real world people are slowly developing ICE.

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Originally Posted by copeab View Post
Two problems magic may not be able to help are cookoffs and extracting a dud in a self-loading or automatic weapon.
Combat II has Essential Gunpowder which could be interpreted as helping with those problems, but I guess it would add significant cost.
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Old 06-25-2019, 09:08 PM   #13
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Default Re: [BS] Lack of Fossil Fuel and Firearm Manufacturing

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Originally Posted by Sorenant View Post
Combat II has Essential Gunpowder which could be interpreted as helping with those problems, but I guess it would add significant cost.
It might help prevent cookoffs, but duds that are result of the primer or gunpowder block breaking loose from the bullet (say, the gun being dropped on a hard surface) which Essential Gunpowder is unlikely to help with. Also, the lack of a case (brass or steel) to absorb heat from the detonating gunpowder will cause the gun itself to heat up faster than a conventional firearm, which will result in increased parts wear.
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Old 06-26-2019, 09:34 AM   #14
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Default Re: [BS] Lack of Fossil Fuel and Firearm Manufacturing

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Originally Posted by Sorenant View Post
I was reading some old quora/stackexchange threads with similar question and apparently lack of fossil fuel implies lack of limestones, which would affect the world quite a lot.
I don't think that's true. Limestones are mostly laid down by marine micro-organisms. Coal comes from land plants. Oil is somewhat disputed, but probably also land plants. Earth had limestone long before it had any fossil fuels. Of course a world with a different biological history might have either, both, neither, or some completely different set of biologically created geologic formations. Though I think even in a sterile world, some carbonate rock should form from evaporation.

As an aside, another issue to be wary of for a recently created biosphere is that many ore deposits have biological origins too - iron ores in particular are almost all biogenic. A world that doesn't have an ancient history of life - or had the wrong kind - will still have lots of iron *somewhere*, but it may never be concentrated enough to mine, which will probably do worse things to the tech tree than a lack of fossil fuels.
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Old 06-26-2019, 01:50 PM   #15
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Default Re: [BS] Lack of Fossil Fuel and Firearm Manufacturing

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As an aside, another issue to be wary of for a recently created biosphere is that many ore deposits have biological origins too.
Depending on what 'recently created' and 'biosphere' mean, it can be a lot worse than that, because an awful lot of ore deposits have to do with the water cycle, and a truly young biosphere probably hasn't had large amounts of liquid water around for all that long.
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