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 03-22-2021, 02:16 PM #1 hcobb     Join Date: Aug 2004 Location: Pacheco, California No wonder the guns blow up Here's my math. TFT grenade is 2 pounds. Half of that is the gunpowder. So a charge of gunpowder is around 3 oz. Which is ten times as much as historical weapons used. http://modernheritage.net/Scott_etal_2017.pdf __________________ -HJC
 03-22-2021, 03:25 PM #2 Terquem   Join Date: Apr 2018 Location: Idaho Falls Re: No wonder the guns blow up Here is my calculation Tft uses guns (I don't) Guns work on a principle (I think) of one kind of stuff exploding, another kind of stuff not, and another kind of stuff moving away from the exploding rapidly. Sometimes the things in this equation get mixed up
 03-22-2021, 03:49 PM #3 Anthony   Join Date: Feb 2005 Location: Berkeley, CA Re: No wonder the guns blow up You couldn't even build an ancient style gun with powder weight and projectile weight being equal, you couldn't fit the powder. Assume the usual 'not written by a gun person' explanation. __________________ My GURPS site and Blog.
 03-23-2021, 09:39 PM #4 JohnPaulB     Join Date: Jan 2018 Location: Portland, Maine Re: No wonder the guns blow up Hey, if they have sulfur-metabolizing microorganisms affecting gunpowder to make it rare, expensive and unreliable, maybe there are nitrate exuding microorganisms affecting gunpowder to make it common, inexpensive and reliable? Maybe there is a alchemical ingredient that makes Cidri gunpowder ten times as powerful as earth historical weapons? __________________ - Hail Melee Fantasy Chess: A chess game with combat. Don't just take the square, Fight for it! https://www.shadowhex.com
 03-23-2021, 10:01 PM #5 DeadParrot   Join Date: Apr 2012 Re: No wonder the guns blow up For a point of reference, I use 90 grains of black powder substitute(Pyrodex) in my modern muzzleloader behind a 250grain projectile. .45 cal bullet in a .50 cal sabot. 1/4 oz ~ 109 grains. Very effective combo for filling a freezer with venison. All three deer taken at about 100 yards. I don't know if it is possible to put 3oz of powder into the barrel and still fit the bullet.
03-24-2021, 06:48 AM   #6
phiwum

Join Date: Jun 2008
Re: No wonder the guns blow up

Quote:
 Originally Posted by DeadParrot For a point of reference, I use 90 grains of black powder substitute(Pyrodex) in my modern muzzleloader behind a 250grain projectile. .45 cal bullet in a .50 cal sabot. 1/4 oz ~ 109 grains. Very effective combo for filling a freezer with venison. All three deer taken at about 100 yards. I don't know if it is possible to put 3oz of powder into the barrel and still fit the bullet.
Maybe Cidri has not developed a funnel yet and 3oz. is used to overcome the anticipated spillage. That's pretty much how I cook.

 06-13-2021, 09:29 AM #7 JustAnotherJarhead     Join Date: Jul 2019 Location: Cali Re: No wonder the guns blow up or...maybe Cidri "gunpowder" is not modern gun powder?
06-16-2021, 08:59 AM   #8
Anaraxes

Join Date: Sep 2007
Re: No wonder the guns blow up

Quote:
 Originally Posted by hcobb Half of that is the gunpowder.
Why this assumption? ITL says that a grenade requires 5 charges of powder, but a charge of powder has a negligible given weight, so we don't know directly how much powder that is.

The potions list calls for an ounce of dragon's dung per charge of powder, but that's not all sulfur, and we don't know how much weight of "common ingredients" is needed. (9 times as much sulfur in real life, at least with post-Cidri-tech formulations.)

A historical arquebus (one charge of powder) would normally fire a lead ball of as much as 40g (600 grains) and call for half that weight in powder (300 grains, or less than 3/4 of an ounce. (You can find sources specifying even more powder; also modern shooters that will think you're crazy for using even 300 gr.) That puts the powder weight in a Cidri grenade at about 3.5 ounces, not a pound. That estimate is high by a factor of five -- which makes the "ten times" a historical grenade charge more like a factor of two. Which brings us right back to that weight of charge for the musket, where I picked a number on the high side, by a factor of about two, as it happens. Also, the question of the powder formulation -- modern, 1800-ish, 1500-ish, as well as the granularity (serpentine vs corned powder).

Meanwhile, a glance at a pottery website tells me that a mug takes pound of clay, a 6" x 2.5" bowl takes a pound and a half, and a 5x4.5" teapot calls for three. Sounds like a grenade would call for a pound of clay at a minimum, and the book does say it's "heavy" earthenware.

So the listed amount of powder ("5 charges") seems about right -- or at least, not so far wrong as to worry about it in a game context. One pound seems quite high.

 06-16-2021, 09:53 AM #9 Peter von Kleinsmid The Fantasy Trip Line Editor   Join Date: May 2021 Re: No wonder the guns blow up Yes, quite. It doesn't say how much of the weight is powder, and a grenade is also filled with scrap metal, so I'd say it's definitely not a pound of powder. Also, TFT weights are mainly for determining encumbrance, not for highly accurate comparisons to real-world objects. If all the weights were carefully revised to match actual real-world weights, it would create a need for a new encumbrance system that wasn't based on weight.

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