Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Sometimes it's not all mackerel and roses

Tuesday at Tam's was a blast, literally and figuratively.

Those two, I whipped up around or just before midnight the night before. 3" bore and 7' length, and 2" bore and 52" length. They've got a near-perfect 1.5:1 chamber to bore volume, and I only made a mild materials error in that while rushed to grab stuff before Lowe's closed at 10 I got 3 and 4" cellular core non-pressure rate PVC, so I was intending to shoot light loads or empty for noise (it was the 4'th after all).

At the end of the night, I'd managed to get some feeble wheezes out of the 2" one and one good low-pressure burn with a muffin (er, ask McAdamSandwich on that) that launched 40' or so.

I have no idea what went wrong at this point, but I think my fuel delivery methods are suspect and I couldn't get it "lean" enough. I was using starter fluid at first and then moved on to cylinder butane, and I don't think I was fast enough with the latter to get the right amount. I'm not sure. Could also be that I was using touch-hole style flame ignition because I didn't have time to rig up a proper electrical system.

I also discovered that my No5Mk1 Enfield has a jug chamber when it blew a casehead on me on the first shot, and when testing almost did the same ont he second.

But, to make it all better:

These arrived today, and I'm rather happy about that :) That's an early 50's S&W M&P five screw and a 1956 Colt Official Police. The S&W seems in perfect working order, but the Colt jumps lock on three cylinders. It may be due to old grime though, there's some deposits in the locking lugs and around the star, and I hesitate to ponder what's inside the frame.

When I'm done with these I'll have two nice shooters... they aren't collectible by any means (except maybe the Colt since it's on a Marshal frame, i.e. "round butt") and they're heavily worn, 50% by my guess. So I figure I'll get them working right and practice with them, work on my .38 loading, and have handy conversation pieces... both belonged to the NYPD at first and them Yonkers race track in NY.

Ah, wonderful history :)


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