Napoleon Series Archive 2009

Re: Howitzers and Canister
In Response To: Re: Howitzers and Canister ()

Kevin,

You have failed to provide any evidence of how Tauber knew imperically that the iron balls in the cannister are free of the cannister at the point of leaving the tube.

How did Tauber know this as fact rather than speculation?

I repeate once again. The ammunition leaving the muzzle could not be observed 200years ago due to the lack of time lapse photography. Tauber, like Scharnhorst, Muller, Benton, du Courdroy, du Teil were all guessing as what happens to the cannister at point of ejection from the tube.

Using an analogy. Charles de Guerniere, Marquis of Newcastle and other eminant equestrians in the early 18th century, all state that a horse cantering or galloping always had a foot on the ground. These men, just like tauber, were experianced in their own field, and were the leading thinkers of the equestrian art. They fully believed that a horse had one foot on the ground from their experiance and this was believed up until the 1890's. This was demonstrated beyond reasonable doubt that a horse for a moment is free of the earth and has all feet off the ground. This is only possible through time lapse photography. Therefore if we rely on a period document for how a horse canters, it is at error on the mechanics of the horses action.

Therefore, Tauber like many of his contemporaries were guessing as to how cannister worked. How can you make a statement about an action that is impossible to observe?

To reiterate what my colleage Dr Summerfield states:
1) we dont know what happens to the cannister in the tube as we cannot observe the forces acting upon the cannister. we can make hypothesis using our own chemical and mathematical undertsanding of the forces used (e.g. the expansion force of the gas produced by the powder, the melting point of tin, the strength of the tin, calculate the sruface area of the tin in contact with the gas prouction etc)
2) we cannot observe, until a reconstructed canister is fired, from a bronze tube using a powder mix from the period, what happens to the cannister on leaving the muzzle of the tube. No one can say for certain what happens until this experiment is carried out and filmed. I cannot say for sure how cannister works, I can make a speculation. Tauber, Benton, Scharnhorst were all guessing as how cannister works.

Using the post procesual school of thought and/or hermanutics, the paradigm around cannister shot is not workable and needs to be changed. to get an understanding of paradigms and hermanutics I refer you to the works of Christopher Shanks and Micheal Tilly

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Howitzers
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Ere wie ere toekomt
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Different constructions of cannister
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Sources
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Trick Phrase. :\
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Thank you for this summary.
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