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View Full Version : Legality on Making of a Small Cannon


mydogsmonkey
05-10-2010, 8:15 PM
Whats the legality of making one of these?
http://gizmodo.com/5534471/tiny-cannon-packs-glass+busting-punch

i'm assuming its black powder they're using, anybody know? im interested in making one, thanks

also if anyone has any idea on what kind of powder they're using and what kind of pressures we should be aware of when firing one of these?

Ernest

BKinzey
05-10-2010, 8:57 PM
I don't know if the legalities but for tech questions there is an email addy at the end of the video.

sholling
05-10-2010, 9:03 PM
Unless something has changed you could buy small muzzle loader black power cannon kits and fuses in a store in Orange County. At least you could just a few years ago. Just like you could buy kits to build your own muzzle loading rifles and pistols.

CSACANNONEER
05-10-2010, 9:14 PM
Perfectly legal to build and shoot (where you can legally shoot). I think they were using flash powder in that video.

TURBOELKY
05-10-2010, 9:59 PM
Any limit to size? I think we'll start small though:D

mydogsmonkey
05-11-2010, 12:00 AM
Perfectly legal to build and shoot (where you can legally shoot). I think they were using flash powder in that video.

told you jeremy HAHA i KNEW greg would know

dude we need to start making some now, haha think of all the possibilities!

damn we started with aks, now mini cannons, i wonder whats next :eek:

mydogsmonkey
05-11-2010, 12:03 AM
Perfectly legal to build and shoot (where you can legally shoot). I think they were using flash powder in that video.

greg would it be okay to use black powder? or should we stick to flash powder?
what would be cheapest/easiest to get?

freonr22
05-11-2010, 12:04 AM
i had sent an email off earlier no response yet

Thrasher416
05-11-2010, 12:22 AM
told you jeremy HAHA i KNEW greg would know

dude we need to start making some now, haha think of all the possibilities!

damn we started with aks, now mini cannons, i wonder whats next :eek:

Bazookas and RPGs? :43:

CSACANNONEER
05-11-2010, 6:53 AM
I don't think there is any limit to size. I would only use black powder myself. Does this mean that we need to find a mill and a lathe?

Trigger Guard
05-11-2010, 7:27 AM
This guy has plans for a couple he made himself. http://www.buckstix.com/index.html
Beware, he doesn't seem to like cats much!

r3dn3ck
05-11-2010, 7:35 AM
AFAIK you can't go over 50cal if you use a SCMC or load from the breech. Muzzle loading is generally considered archaic and isn't so heavily regulated.

I like golf ball cannons myself. http://cannonthunder.com/golf_ball_mortars.html

400yrds to the pin... no big deal!

Rickfifty
05-11-2010, 7:41 AM
http://i6.photobucket.com/albums/y214/rickfifty/th_CannonclipPhotobucket.jpg (http://s6.photobucket.com/albums/y214/rickfifty/?action=view&current=CannonclipPhotobucket.flv)

CHS
05-11-2010, 8:20 AM
Here's a casting for one that I made. .50cal. This is before final machining. It's made from silicon bronze. Poured it myself :)

http://i335.photobucket.com/albums/m446/bdsmchs/PICT0588.jpg

CSACANNONEER
05-11-2010, 8:30 AM
Here's a casting for one that I made. .50cal. This is before final machining. It's made from silicon bronze. Poured it myself :)

http://i335.photobucket.com/albums/m446/bdsmchs/PICT0588.jpg

Do you still have access to a foundry?

stag1500
05-11-2010, 8:54 AM
Any limit to size?

No. Just watch the current season of Mythbusters.

command_liner
05-11-2010, 9:09 AM
In recent years I have made a bunch of small cannon.

The typical hierarchy is
0.5", 0.75", 1", golf ball, coke can, baseball, softball, bowling ball.

You can cut most of the work out of the problem by buying
super-heavy-wall Drawn Over Mandrel tubing cut-offs. Check the
IMS in Irvine for a useful selection.

When you get the tubing, just machine a plug for the breech, then
press the cap in place and then weld. After that, weld on a breech
cap. OK, so you need a BIG torch, decent press, good lathe and
good welder.

There is a good shortcut for bowling ball mortars. By mysterious
mechanical serendipity,
1) A standard bowling ball fits perfectly into a half of one of the
standard high-pressure gas cylinders. Buy a used cylinder and cut
it.
2) A forged steel 2 5/16" trailer ball can be threaded into the
former top of the gas cylinder after some machine work.
3) The standard US Army mortar base from a while back uses
a 2 5/16 socket, so the bowling ball mortar drops right in.

CAUTION! CAUTION! Range is measured in miles.
CAUTION! CAUTION! Pressure wave from this device will pulverize
all automobile windows within 100 feet. It is not good for ears,
eyes, light bulbs and similar stuff.

CHS
05-11-2010, 9:27 AM
Do you still have access to a foundry?

As a matter of fact, yes I do. I helped build it.

It's a pretty small foundry. Only good for about 20-25lb's of Bronze at a time, but we've made a nice golf ball morter with it too.

Supply the propane, and I can get access to it for you :)

CSACANNONEER
05-11-2010, 9:35 AM
As a matter of fact, yes I do. I helped build it.

It's a pretty small foundry. Only good for about 20-25lb's of Bronze at a time, but we've made a nice golf ball morter with it too.

Supply the propane, and I can get access to it for you :)

:jump::party:http://i125.photobucket.com/albums/p43/csacannoneer/BoomSmilie_anim.gifhttp://i125.photobucket.com/albums/p43/csacannoneer/banana.gif

Do I see a casting party happening sometime this summer?

Grumpyoldretiredcop
05-11-2010, 10:02 AM
AFAIK you can't go over 50cal if you use a SCMC or load from the breech. Muzzle loading is generally considered archaic and isn't so heavily regulated.

I like golf ball cannons myself. http://cannonthunder.com/golf_ball_mortars.html

400yrds to the pin... no big deal!

Not quite right. You may not manufacture a cannon with a bore diameter in excess of .60 which fires fixed ammunition as that would be a destructive device in CA.

A breech-loading "bag gun" larger than .60 caliber, which uses a projectile and powder charge which is not fixed, and which can not be loaded with a cartridge, is perfectly legal.

I like golf ball cannons, too, they're just good clean fun.

scc1909
05-11-2010, 10:21 AM
Not quite right. You may not manufacture a cannon with a bore diameter in excess of .60 which fires fixed ammunition as that would be a destructive device in CA.

A breech-loading "bag gun" larger than .60 caliber, which uses a projectile and powder charge which is not fixed, and which can not be loaded with a cartridge, is perfectly legal.

I like golf ball cannons, too, they're just good clean fun.

Is fixed ammunition a cartridge, i.e., a shell and bullet together, as in a regular rifle cartridge?

I take it then that there is no limit on a conventional antique-ish muzzle loader using a separate ball and bag of powder?

Thanks!

PS - Sorry I don't know all the correct terminology...

Mikeb
05-11-2010, 10:22 AM
This was discussed in the 2A forum the other day under the subject of "powder storage". The sentence that got my attention was that Black powder could be kept for use in sporting arms less than .75 cal. So what if you made a swivel gun from 1" ID DOM that shot patched 3 oz fishing sinkers.
Now I have nothing else to say...
Mike

CHS
05-11-2010, 10:53 AM
This was discussed in the 2A forum the other day under the subject of "powder storage". The sentence that got my attention was that Black powder could be kept for use in sporting arms less than .75 cal. So what if you made a swivel gun from 1" ID DOM that shot patched 3 oz fishing sinkers.


Luckily, pyrodex isn't "black powder" :)

mydogsmonkey
05-11-2010, 10:54 AM
so would it be okay to get a piece of steel rod stock and use a drill press to drill out a hole for something small like the BB size? then just add something for it to be mounted on?

CHS
05-11-2010, 10:56 AM
so would it be okay to get a piece of steel rod stock and use a drill press to drill out a hole for something small like the BB size? then just add something for it to be mounted on?

Yup!

GrizzlyGuy
05-11-2010, 10:58 AM
Not quite right. You may not manufacture a cannon with a bore diameter in excess of .60 which fires fixed ammunition as that would be a destructive device in CA.

A breech-loading "bag gun" larger than .60 caliber, which uses a projectile and powder charge which is not fixed, and which can not be loaded with a cartridge, is perfectly legal.

I like golf ball cannons, too, they're just good clean fun.

We went through this before when we were trying to figure out if potato guns were legal. Read (4) in the law I quoted here (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?p=3511230#post3511230). Also here (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?p=3511318#post3511318) further down that thread.

Then again, bdsmchs slapped his forehead further down that thread here (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?p=3988346#post3988346), so who the heck knows what the story is for non-antique canon. :confused:

mydogsmonkey
05-11-2010, 11:12 AM
at what point should you be afraid of the thing exploding on you? haha

Turo
05-11-2010, 11:17 AM
at what point should you be afraid of the thing exploding on you? haha

When there wasn't a machinist helping you make it. ;)

mydogsmonkey
05-11-2010, 11:32 AM
When there wasn't a machinist helping you make it. ;)

seriously? i'm thinking about making some and some specific answers would help, thanks!

command_liner
05-11-2010, 12:01 PM
You should always worry about explosions.

That is why we have the idea of "proof load". Twice the volume
of powder with twice the mass of shot. If it does not blow up,
it probably will not blow up with normal load of powder and shot.

mydogsmonkey
05-11-2010, 12:08 PM
You should always worry about explosions.

That is why we have the idea of "proof load". Twice the volume
of powder with twice the mass of shot. If it does not blow up,
it probably will not blow up with normal load of powder and shot.

so you should proof load once to make sure and then use regularly?

CHS
05-11-2010, 12:29 PM
We went through this before when we were trying to figure out if potato guns were legal. Read (4) in the law I quoted here (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?p=3511230#post3511230). Also here (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?p=3511318#post3511318) further down that thread.

Then again, bdsmchs slapped his forehead further down that thread here (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?p=3988346#post3988346), so who the heck knows what the story is for non-antique canon. :confused:

Read that post again. I was smacking my forehead because someone tried to pull the zip-gun thing.

If it's not a Title 2 firearm, it can't meet the definition of a zip gun.

If it doesn't fire fixed ammunition, it can't meet the definition of a DD.

Cannons, antique or not, muzzleloading or not, aren't zip guns and aren't DD's if they don't fire fixed ammunition.

CSACANNONEER
05-12-2010, 3:02 PM
Ca law for fixed round DDs is .60 cal but, isn't Federal law only .50 cal?

CHS
05-12-2010, 3:52 PM
Ca law for fixed round DDs is .60 cal but, isn't Federal law only .50 cal?

Yup, with certain exceptions for "sporting" cartridges like .600 nitro express, .700 nitro express, .577 Tyranosaur, etc..

The cool thing is, it means you can have a DD in CA without a DOJ permit if it's under .60cal.

I've been considering picking up a Daewoo AA-12 and having it shipped to a middle man so he can re-barrel it for a shotgun cartridge less than .60 cal (I think .28ga is) while I work on getting my stamp for it :)

CA-legal AA-12 :tank:

2Bear
05-12-2010, 6:57 PM
Does this mean that we need to find a mill and a lathe?

I've always wanted an excuse to buy one of these...

http://images.harborfreight.com/cpi/photos/93200-93299/93212.gif

http://www.harborfreightusa.com/usa/itemdisplay/displayItem.do?itemid=93212

CSACANNONEER
05-12-2010, 7:18 PM
I've always wanted an excuse to buy one of these...

http://images.harborfreight.com/cpi/photos/93200-93299/93212.gif

http://www.harborfreightusa.com/usa/itemdisplay/displayItem.do?itemid=93212

Me too. That's on my long list of things I want.

CHS
05-12-2010, 7:26 PM
Me too. That's on my long list of things I want.

Did I mention I have access to a bigger one of those, too? :)

TURBOELKY
05-12-2010, 7:37 PM
I think mydogsmonkey is more interested in building a "cute" cannon, something that shoots bb sized projectiles. I think that mini-lathe/mill would suit this job perfectly! If not, its just going to be one ugly mini cannon, but thats alright!??:D

Grumpyoldretiredcop
05-12-2010, 7:45 PM
Is fixed ammunition a cartridge, i.e., a shell and bullet together, as in a regular rifle cartridge?

I take it then that there is no limit on a conventional antique-ish muzzle loader using a separate ball and bag of powder?

Thanks!

PS - Sorry I don't know all the correct terminology...

Right you are, on both counts. Don't worry, "key words and tricky phrases" will come with time, experience, and research. Cannons are just plain, loud, FUN!

2Bear
05-12-2010, 11:03 PM
Did I mention I have access to a bigger one of those, too? :)

I shudder to think how cheaply one could manufacture these micro-cannons in some Asiatic pseudo-economy.

I do like products like these because with just some inexpensive rod stock, some cheap micro-lathes, (alas, Asian sourced...$300-400), and perhaps some at-risk youth, one could start a small biz, perhaps non-profit, with a point to make.

Of course all micro-cannon facsimiles should be sold non-functioning, (perhaps requiring a drill bit to pierce the fuse hole...?).

Definitely need a cheap laser engraver to scribe the cannons "Live Free or Die" "Made in the USA, Homey," and such... With the local manufacturing model, individualization by engraving would be trivial.

http://i493.photobucket.com/albums/rr292/nvgroup/00001.png

http://tinyurl.com/24cve89

CHS
05-13-2010, 12:13 AM
I dunno... All this talk of "micro cannons" is just too..... I dunno... wimpy.

Go big or go home!!

Lets get some 6-pounders in the hands of people! Or maybe some 12-lb mountain howitzers! That's the sound freedom makes! :)

2Bear
05-13-2010, 12:56 AM
Or maybe some 12-lb mountain howitzers! That's the sound freedom makes! :)

Half scale 12# ain't bad...

rN1atqCpeCc

I've always thought these guys had good functional kits, assuming you've got the time...

http://www.cannon-mania.com/images/Rhodes/Naval-24-3s.JPG

http://www.cannon-mania.com/kits-functional.htm

CSACANNONEER
05-13-2010, 6:47 PM
I dunno... All this talk of "micro cannons" is just too..... I dunno... wimpy.

Go big or go home!!

Lets get some 6-pounders in the hands of people! Or maybe some 12-lb mountain howitzers! That's the sound freedom makes! :)

This one (and several others) was in my driveway for a while.

http://i125.photobucket.com/albums/p43/csacannoneer/057.jpg

One of our four gun batteries. I was manning a gun in the other 4 gun battery but, that's my stepson with the drum.

http://img120.imageshack.us/img120/3778/sany0018lf1.jpg



And, of course I can't forget a video of my little trap gun:

http://i125.photobucket.com/albums/p43/csacannoneer/th_Machoskeet.jpg (http://s125.photobucket.com/albums/p43/csacannoneer/?action=view&current=Machoskeet.flv)

OK, unfortunately I'm joking about that one.

CHS
05-13-2010, 9:25 PM
This one (and several others) was in my driveway for a while.

http://i125.photobucket.com/albums/p43/csacannoneer/057.jpg


Hrmmm... Does that gun normally live in a driveway in Ojai, or right outside Ojai? I think I recognize it.

mydogsmonkey
05-13-2010, 9:30 PM
so does this mean that the first shot out of any cannon made should be a proof load, double the charge and shot? once we do that its golden?

CSACANNONEER
05-14-2010, 6:17 AM
Hrmmm... Does that gun normally live in a driveway in Ojai, or right outside Ojai? I think I recognize it.

No, this one currently resides in a hanger at an undisclosed airport. Some of the guns in the other pic are Landis's though. Oh yea, you're thinking of Oak View not Ojai. But, they are close.

383green
05-14-2010, 9:57 AM
This one (and several others) was in my driveway for a while.

http://i125.photobucket.com/albums/p43/csacannoneer/057.jpg


Hmm, I wonder if I could shoot one of those at the Lytle Creek range?

Mikeb
05-17-2010, 3:06 PM
seriously? i'm thinking about making some and some specific answers would help, thanks!


When I made mine I threaded the breach plug and the 2.5 inch DOM tube threaded them together and welded the breach plug in. I've yet to shoot it, but when I do I will shoot it a couple of times with one 1" lead ball, and 200 grains of BP, while watching from a distance. The "proof " it with 2 balls and 400 grains, again from a safe distance. Then I will trust it.
take care
Mike

tuolumnejim
05-17-2010, 6:23 PM
Or you could peruse the lists at Hern iron Works (http://www.hernironworks.com/cannonprice.html) or Dixie Gun Works (http://www.dixiegunworks.com/default.php?cPath=22_106_665), making your own small bore sounds like fun thought. :D

motorhead
05-17-2010, 8:06 PM
there used to be a guy on gunsamerica that sold homebuilt bowling ball mortars.

SchooBaka
05-17-2010, 8:30 PM
My highschool metal shop project one year was a .50 muzzle loaded black powder cannon I modeled after one a friends dad had bought.
I turned it out on the lathe from some round steel stock I found upstairs in the storage area.
I cut and turned out threads for the breach on the same lathe. I then proceeded to weld up a stand out of angle iron. I drilled the holes in the cannon for the mounts on the stand.....and that's as far as it has ever gotten. Still havn't drilled the fuse hole or tapped the cannon to mount it. To be honest, I'm not sure I trust the threads I cut on the lathe for the breach. It was a fun project though.

I feel sorry for kids growing up these days. I can't imagine what a kid would go through for just proposing such a project.