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Old 07-01-2015, 10:15 PM   #21
Sindri
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Default Re: Wheellocks and Flintlocks

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Originally Posted by Mr Frost View Post
If your setting has extensive dry and sandy/dusty areas then matchlocks will still be popular there as being mechanically much simpler they are both cheaper and more reliable in said conditions {the grit is more likely to jam the more complex mechanisms - a matchlock doesn't need to be more complex than a lever with a single weak spring and it can continue to function without that spring} .

The Ottomans for example kept using matchlocks in large numbers well into the napoleonic era .
I can see that incentive, but it feels like the end result is avoidable. Matchlocks weren't better enough to persuade people set up with flintlocks to keep using them, just good enough to push back the switch. The rate of fire is a huge difference even without the other technical advantages, the skillsets to make and operate matchlocks are different and they're an obviously obsolete technology. Some care in designing the timeline, choosing significant firearm makers and perhaps some more emphasis on sealing the locks from the elements should handle things.

Still it's something to keep in mind, so thanks.
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Old 07-02-2015, 12:11 AM   #22
Tomsdad
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
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Default Re: Wheellocks and Flintlocks

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... Costing more is an advantage when you're trying to distinguish yourself and more maintenance is a mild downside but also discourages their use with the sort of person who doesn't have servants. Also, unlike a gold-plated version of a regular firearm a wheellock requires different training which also helps to distinguish the wielder. While there's a lot of not-gauche things you can do with the exterior an intrinsically more expensive lock mechanism allows you to invest more in the weapon while maintaining good taste.
...
Just to pick up on this, weapons as status symbols tended not to be status because of inherent complexity or expense of basic manufacture (that said if new technology was fashionable you might well be invested in paying over the odds for it), but because they were bespoke or blinged up.

Wheel lock of flint lock you can always find someone* willing to make you a unique one for a vast price, making the inherent difference in pricing irrelevant. The fact that GURPS uses CF as a multiplier isn't actually that matched by real world decoration

You also have to remember that unlike melee weapons that became more and more decoration only, the nobility/gentry kept hunting so prestige, status firearms still had to work. It might be embarrassing to have slightly out of fashion decoration on your gun, but of you can't get it to fire when you peers (or god help you the next tier up) are looking at you is also not good.

*and sometimes the cache of the artist/workman was also a draw in and of itself (that you paid for). You want a gun engraved by Gustav of Munich, even if Helmut in your house hold can do a decent approximation of Gustav's style.
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Old 07-02-2015, 01:03 AM   #23
Sindri
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Default Re: Wheellocks and Flintlocks

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Originally Posted by Tomsdad View Post
Just to pick up on this, weapons as status symbols tended not to be status because of inherent complexity or expense of basic manufacture (that said if new technology was fashionable you might well be invested in paying over the odds for it), but because they were bespoke or blinged up.
It's an effect you see in other items, like watches, though. I think the opportunity just doesn't come up often with weapons.

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Originally Posted by Tomsdad View Post
Wheel lock of flint lock you can always find someone* willing to make you a unique one for a vast price, making the inherent difference in pricing irrelevant. The fact that GURPS uses CF as a multiplier isn't actually that matched by real world decoration
Surface decorations are all additive to what's going on with the mechanism, while more complicated mechanisms generally give more room to showcase the skill of the craftsman than simpler ones.
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Old 07-02-2015, 01:21 AM   #24
Tomsdad
 
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Default Re: Wheellocks and Flintlocks

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Originally Posted by Sindri View Post
It's an effect you see in other items, like watches, though. I think the opportunity just doesn't come up often with weapons.
That's true, there was a mania for automation in the C18th & C19th's. But as you say less scoep with weapons (even guns). Still soem quite fancy and oputlandish stuff was created



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Originally Posted by Sindri View Post
Surface decorations are all additive to what's going on with the mechanism, while more complicated mechanisms generally give more room to showcase the skill of the craftsman than simpler ones.
yes but they are not visible to the observer as much as decoration so less useful for displaying status. Also the scope is not that great in perfecting the mechanism certainly not as a comparison to other mechanisms. Decoration however is only limited by the artistry of the craftsmen and the observers appreciation of it.

Decoration is not really additive to mechanism, there really isn't really a link between the two at all (apart from where the mechanisms gets in the way of decoration). That why the strict CF multiplier model doesn't work for decoration. There is no reason why enough styling to warrant an +3 bonus for an axe should cost $450 but $4500 for a broadsword or 10x as much, especially as the styling on the sword is likely to be concentrated on the hilt and scabbard (which is what people see mainly).

The point being craftsmanship of mechanism and craftsmanship of decoration are two different things (often involving two different craftsmen for a start), not only are they applied differently, but they would be judged differently according to different criteria as well.
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Old 07-02-2015, 01:34 AM   #25
Sindri
 
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Default Re: Wheellocks and Flintlocks

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yes but they are not visible to the observer as much as decoration so less useful for displaying status.
That's what brands are for.

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Originally Posted by Tomsdad View Post
Also the scope is not that great in perfecting the mechanism certainly not as a comparison to other mechanisms.
I think there's a lot more room to impress with the wheellock than the flintlock.

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Originally Posted by Tomsdad View Post
Decoration however is only limited by the artistry of the craftsmen and the observers appreciation of it.
It's also a constant. You'll get all the exterior decoration no matter what and thus it's functionally irrelevant.

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Originally Posted by Tomsdad View Post
Decoration is not really additive to mechanism, there really isn't really a link between the two at all (apart from where the mechanisms gets in the way of decoration). That why the strict CF multiplier model doesn't work for decoration.
I think you're confused about the meaning of the word "additive". It's, obviously, not multiplicative. There not being a link is precisely what makes something additive. You have a thing and then you add on another cost to it. The entire CF thing is something you've dragged into here. It has nothing to do with what I'm talking about.

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Originally Posted by Tomsdad View Post
The point being craftsmanship of mechanism and craftsmanship of decoration are two different things (often involving two different craftsmen for a start), not only are they applied differently, but they would be judged differently according to different criteria as well.
The entire point is that they're different things. You already have the exterior decoration. An intricate mechanism that rewards the craftsmanship going in to it is something that lets you throw on more stuff.
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Old 07-02-2015, 02:44 AM   #26
Tomsdad
 
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Default Re: Wheellocks and Flintlocks

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Originally Posted by Sindri View Post
That's what brands are for.
Sorry don't know what you mean here?



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Originally Posted by Sindri View Post
I think there's a lot more room to impress with the wheellock than the flintlock..
Depends on what your criteria your using for impressive



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Originally Posted by Sindri View Post
It's also a constant. You'll get all the exterior decoration no matter what and thus it's functionally irrelevant.
That my latter point about multiplicative cost factors

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Originally Posted by Sindri View Post
I think you're confused about the meaning of the word "additive". It's, obviously, not multiplicative. There not being a link is precisely what makes something additive. You have a thing and then you add on another cost to it. The entire CF thing is something you've dragged into here. It has nothing to do with what I'm talking about.
Actually I'm not, my point was it not even additive its separate, status so decoration really is not on top of craftsmanship of internet mechanism, because as I said you don't see the latter, and it also quite hard to infer it action unless you actually doing proper side by side assessment. That leaves aside that more complex does't mean better, and better is a likely judgement.



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Originally Posted by Sindri View Post
The entire point is that they're different things. You already have the exterior decoration. An intricate mechanism that rewards the craftsmanship going in to it is something that lets you throw on more stuff.
How does it allow you throw on more stuff? (more complex, mechanisms need more time and effort just to achieve their basic functionality). What do you even mean by throwing on more stuff, more importantly why is more stuff going to lead to increased status?

Status from objects is weird one anyway because it's in as much the eye of the beholder as it is the actual method used to gain it.

I'm pretty sure there are some sub cultures that would not take the decorative CF factors into account when assessing a weapon, but rather the CF of balances and v.fine.

Form vs. function, they are not mutually exclusive but neither are they exactly 50/50.
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Old 07-02-2015, 02:59 AM   #27
Sindri
 
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Default Re: Wheellocks and Flintlocks

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Originally Posted by Tomsdad View Post
Sorry don't know what you mean here?
It's also difficult to show how impressive the inner workings of a watch are. You can do a bit, but mostly what you do is make the outside distinctive and develop a reputation for making technically impressive watches. People recognize the brand and you thus benefit from your investment in the invisible inner working of your watch.

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That my latter point about multiplicative cost factors
It's also what I've been saying the whole time.

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Actually I'm not, my point was it not even additive its separate, status so decoration really is not on top of craftsmanship of internet mechanism, because as I said you don't see the latter, and it also quite hard to infer it action unless you actually doing proper side by side assessment. That leaves aside that more complex does't mean better, and better is a likely judgement.
If you perceive it, it's a separate factor that improves the resulting total impressiveness. Which is to say, something which is additive.

If you can't perceive it, it's effectively non-existent.

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Originally Posted by Tomsdad View Post
How does it allow you throw on more stuff? (more complex, mechanisms need more time and effort just to achieve their basic functionality). What do you even mean by throwing on more stuff, more importantly why is more stuff going to lead to increased status?
It constitutes more stuff. You have the exterior decorations and you also have bonus cool stuff in the form of an impressive mechanism. You want as much coolness as you can get without being gauche and this allows you to get more than just what you can get with exterior decorations.

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Originally Posted by Tomsdad View Post
I'm pretty sure there are some sub cultures that would not take the decorative CF factors into account when assessing a weapon, but rather the CF of balances and v.fine.

Form vs. function, they are not mutually exclusive but neither are they exactly 50/50.
A sub-culture can also be envisioned that disdains decoration but it's irrelevant. Allow me to remind you that I'm not commenting generically here. This is not a guide concerning how to make impressive weapons. It's a defense of an idea concern a specific sub-culture in a specific setting.
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Old 07-02-2015, 05:49 AM   #28
Tomsdad
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
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Default Re: Wheellocks and Flintlocks

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Originally Posted by Sindri View Post
It's also difficult to show how impressive the inner workings of a watch are. You can do a bit, but mostly what you do is make the outside distinctive and develop a reputation for making technically impressive watches. People recognize the brand and you thus benefit from your investment in the invisible inner working of your watch.
Thing is with watches having complex and yet precise inner workings are part of the inherent draw of the object, less so with hunting guns which have other metrics to be judged by.



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It's also what I've been saying the whole time.
yes I think we agree on that.

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If you perceive it, it's a separate factor that improves the resulting total impressiveness. Which is to say, something which is additive.

If you can't perceive it, it's effectively non-existent.
Which is largely the difference between wheel locks and flint locks (even leaving aside the benefits Flint locks have in terms of outward use over wheel locks)

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Originally Posted by Sindri View Post
It constitutes more stuff. You have the exterior decorations .
which doesn't seem to vary much between the two types of guns

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Originally Posted by Sindri View Post
and you also have bonus cool stuff in the form of an impressive mechanism.
which we've just discounted because it largely can't be seen, or give any advantage. Complexity for complexities sakes is not particularly valued, especially when it give no increase in functionality.



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Originally Posted by Sindri View Post
You want as much coolness as you can get without being gauche and this allows you to get more than just what you can get with exterior decorations.
Have you seen C18th - C19th styles, exterior show was rather paramount to most styles of the time.

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Originally Posted by Sindri View Post
A sub-culture can also be envisioned that disdains decoration but it's irrelevant. Allow me to remind you that I'm not commenting generically here. This is not a guide concerning how to make impressive weapons. It's a defense of an idea concern a specific sub-culture in a specific setting.
OK but then you might need to cite what that sub cultures uses as a metric for assigning perceived value.

If it is complex mechanism over others, then I suggest you take the C18th & C19th craze for automatons as inspiration. Clockwork weapons that self load and prime for instance.

as an example there was clock work doll that could be programmed* to write letters, writing letters was the result bit a written letter in abstract was not the point fo fascination, it was the fact that it had been done by the doll.


*and that was the right term
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Old 07-02-2015, 07:42 AM   #29
Varyon
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Default Re: Wheellocks and Flintlocks

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Originally Posted by Varyon View Post
Fire pistons are, in my opinion, the most interesting, but I suspect they'd be beyond TL 4 capabilities. You would need some mechanism that reliably opens a small "window" in the bottom of the piston to eject the burning material to ignite the gunpowder, which is probably a bit too complex (a fire piston needs to be a contained system to build up sufficient heat to light anything, but then whatever it lights needs to light your powder).
It has since occurred to me that I may have been looking at this all wrong. If the wadding is packed tightly enough, you could have the "exit" be blocked by the bullet itself. You'd load the weapon and, rather than having a flashpan, you'd have a piston that lowered (probably after being struck by a hammer) into the chamber itself, compressing things enough to ignite the powder (you may need a ratchet mechanism to prevent the explosion from throwing the piston back up), which then propels the bullet, as normal. Such a self-contained system could result in earlier development of fixed cartridges (and could serve as an interesting way of making such ammunition more expensive, as well as more difficult to autoload, if the cartridges have built-in fire pistons).

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Originally Posted by Tomsdad View Post
Just to pick up on this, weapons as status symbols tended not to be status because of inherent complexity or expense of basic manufacture (that said if new technology was fashionable you might well be invested in paying over the odds for it), but because they were bespoke or blinged up.
Swords were a status symbol due almost entirely to inherent complexity and expense of basic manufacture. They required very high-quality materials and a higher level of craftsmanship than most weapons. They didn't need to be bespoke or "blinged," although they were indeed often both.

If the only disadvantage a wheellock has comes down to cost (both for manufacture and maintenance), it could easily become a status symbol - it will always be more expensive than a comparable flintlock. You can also make the wheellock mechanism look much more impressive than a flintlock, at least in my opinion.

The weapons being a bit more fragile might not prevent them from being status symbols, particularly if you can use more expensive parts to offset/negate this penalty. If they have a higher Malf, however, they'll be abandoned.
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Old 07-02-2015, 08:29 AM   #30
Fred Brackin
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Default Re: Wheellocks and Flintlocks

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Originally Posted by Sindri View Post
I can see that incentive, but it feels like the end result is avoidable. Matchlocks weren't better enough to persuade people set up with flintlocks to keep using them, just good enough to push back the switch. The rate of fire is a huge difference even without the other technical advantages, the skillsets to make and operate matchlocks are different and they're an obviously obsolete technology. .
Just to warn you that some of the ROF differences seen in muzzle4-loading reflect historically "normal" ammo handling practices rather than technological capabilities. A lower ROF for matchlocks probably represents the use of loose ammo with no premeasuring. There' no reason why matchlocks should be inherently slower to reload than any other muzzle-loader.

You've also repeatedly mentioned differences in "training" for lock types and acted as if they were large. I do not believe they were. I'd rate them as less than an 8 hour familiarization. Indeed, I'd rate them at roughly a 5 minute explanation.

Handling the powder, wadding and shot swiftly and efficiently by muscle memory is what eats up training time.
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