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Old 10-30-2009, 12:32 AM   #25
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Iceland*
Default Re: Emerging smokepowder weapons in my fantasy

Originally Posted by Pragmatic View Post
At a guess, metallurgy. Gunpowder (and smokepowder, I guess) imparts large stresses on gun barrels. Any weaknesses could cause the gun to blow up. Thus, they started off with cannons, making them pretty thick. As they grew more confident, they reduced the thickness, but still had to use bronze (it wasn't until they got super-hot smelting that they could cast iron to make cheaper cannon barrels). As their metallurgy improved, they even put it in small "hand cannons," working their way down to regular muskets and pistols.

But this is a fantasy realm, with gods of crafts and artifice. They could possibly have the high-grade metallurgy needed to not have man-portable guns blowing up in people's faces all the time.

But I'm not sure of anything I just said, so take with a grain of salt. :-)
I know why it happened in the real world.

I was just making the point that in a fantasy world where metallurgy was already at a similar level to our 17th century, it is unlikely that there is any great mystery involved with making strong gunbarrels.
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