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 Carronade 
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Post Carronade
In William James' account of the battle between Boston and Embuscade (in Volume I of his Naval History), he states, "...the Boston mounted six of those useless monkey-tailed [old design] 12-pounder carronades..."

Why did he consider them useless? Was it the design of the gun or was it because the ball it fired was relatively small? Maybe a combination of both?

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Sat Apr 23, 2005 9:13 pm
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Post Carronades - early versions
Possible answer: The early versions of carronades were extremely short. The length of the barrel was only about 18 INCHES. If the course sails were not braided up, the sails were prone to catching fire from the flaming wads since the end of such barrells were so in-board. The length of the barrel was increased to about five feet and the size of the round shot fired ranged from 18 to 64 pounders in the later versions. The largest (64) was found on ships of the line. Don


Sun Apr 24, 2005 6:00 pm
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Post Early carronade problems
After re-reading some information about the problems with early carronades, I found that the smaller types (12 pounders) were not very successful in battle as a weapon. So, in addition to setting your own sails and rigging afire, they did not do that much damage to the enemy. Nearly every Royal Navy Captain disliked even the concept of the carronades. Several petitions were submitted to the Admiralty, prior to accepting them on the ships. Captains felt that the ones mounted on the quarterdeck would also interfere with sail handling. Once they were installed however, Captains raved about them and demanded more, and larger, carronades.

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Tue Jun 07, 2005 12:47 pm
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I found this interesting little reference in THE TIMES, 1st October, 1787.


" ... Government has given orders to the Carron Company, for a considerable number of guns, usually termed Carronades; and the Admiralty-office have granted protection to those sailors who may be employed on boards their ships in the service of transporting such warlike implements to places where they are to be delivered...."

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Tue Jun 07, 2005 3:08 pm
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Mil Goose wrote:
I found this interesting little reference in THE TIMES, 1st October, 1787.


" ... Government has given orders to the Carron Company, for a considerable number of guns, usually termed Carronades; and the Admiralty-office have granted protection to those sailors who may be employed on boards their ships in the service of transporting such warlike implements to places where they are to be delivered...."
How interesting that the guns became more common following this event in 1787, when some writers would have us believe they were spreading throughout the home fleet five years earlier. It would be interesting to know if there was a variance in comissioning ships with carronades between the western dockyards and the eastern dockyards (or should we think in north/south terms?)?
Charity


Wed Jun 08, 2005 5:47 am
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HMS Charity wrote:
How interesting that the guns became more common following this event in 1787, when some writers would have us believe they were spreading throughout the home fleet five years earlier. It would be interesting to know if there was a variance in comissioning ships with carronades between the western dockyards and the eastern dockyards (or should we think in north/south terms?)?
Charity

In Nelson's Navy, Lavery writes that, before 1794, carronades were fitted to ships only if the commanding officer applied for them.

I wonder if the push for more carronades in 1787 had anything to do with the prelude to the war between Sweden and Russia.

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Thu Jun 09, 2005 9:28 pm
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Post Carron Company
From THE TIMES. October 18, 1825


" ... The extensive iron-works at Carron are very brisk at present, in making shot and shells, field-pieces, carronades, Congreve howitzers, sugar-pans for the West Indies, &c. They have now at work four blast furnaces, eight air-furnaces, and four cupolas, and these consume about 800 tons of coal, and melt about 660 tons of metal in a week. A fifth blast furnace, on a more extensive scale, will soon be set on.

To facilitate the shipping of goods for the London market, a large lock is nearly finished, which will keep an abundant supply of water at all times. At this time last year, the company were happy to dispose of pig-iron; but from their increased business, they now not only sell none, but are taking from 20 to 30 tons a day from their old stock. A great number of carts of stone are already laid down, and other preparations are going forward, for making a considerable addition to the works in the ensuing spring. - Glasgow Chronicle. ..."

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Sun Jun 12, 2005 10:18 am
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Post Why the miltary increase?
I am curious about the military increase (at least at the Carron Ironworks) from 1824 to 1825 as noted in Mary's Times' article. I did not realize that there was in any significant naval war circa 1825. I did some research and found that Britian had conflicts in Burma, Africa, and India about this time. Namely: First Anglo-Burmese War 1823-1826, Anglo-Asante War 1826, and the Jat War (Bhurtpore 1826). Since I am not English, these conflicts are unknown to me. I read the descriptions, but none of these seem to be a naval conflict. What did I miss?

Don


Sun Jun 12, 2005 11:03 am
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Post Re: Why the miltary increase?
timoneer wrote:
I read the descriptions, but none of these seem to be a naval conflict. What did I miss?


An amphibious landing at Rangoon and various coastal raids, in the case of the First Anglo-Burmese War. Except for logistical support, though, I can't imagine how the Royal Navy might've been employed in the other two wars you mention.

But aren't you assuming that the Carron Company only made naval armaments?

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Sat Jul 28, 2007 10:51 pm
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Post Re: Why the miltary increase?
Broos Campbell wrote:
timoneer wrote:
I read the descriptions, but none of these seem to be a naval conflict. What did I miss?

An amphibious landing at Rangoon and various coastal raids, in the case of the First Anglo-Burmese War. Except for logistical support, though, I can't imagine how the Royal Navy might've been employed in the other two wars you mention.

But aren't you assuming that the Carron Company only made naval armaments?

Broos, the only assumption that I am making is that carronades were used for ship-to-ship battles. In the 1825 article posted on June 2005 by Mary, carronades were in a list of items made by the Carron Company which I focused on as being "naval only" in nature. Certainly, other items in the list like "field pieces" were land based and understandable. Your comments above seem to confirm that no naval battles occurred as I cannot see carronades being used to support any amphibious landings or logistical support. The only explanation to explain the increase in carronade production might be that the Royal Navy was switching carronade types to a new style at that time.

Of course, maybe I read the article completely wrong and the amount of carronades being produced in 1825 did not increase at all. Maybe the "total" amount of products being manufactured went up, not each individual item in the list. Maybe the normal maintenance level of carronades were being manufactured and the rest of the items in the list were on the increase due to the land conflicts. That might explain the increase of business at Carron and the lack of sea battles.

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Sun Jul 29, 2007 1:28 am
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Post Re: Why the miltary increase?
timoneer wrote:
Broos, the only assumption that I am making is that carronades were used for ship-to-ship battles.


Easy, brother, the dirty dealer meant no harm.

The assumption is here: "I am curious about the military increase (at least at the Carron Ironworks) from 1824 to 1825 as noted in Mary's Times' article. I did not realize that there was in any significant naval war circa 1825."

You went from "military increase" to wondering about naval conflicts.

As to your actual and interesting question, however, I'll resort to Twain: "I was gratified to be able to answer promptly, and I did. I said I didn't know."

Broos

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Post Re: Why the miltary increase?
timoneer wrote:
I am curious about the military increase (at least at the Carron Ironworks) from 1824 to 1825 as noted in Mary's Times' article. I did not realize that there was in any significant naval war circa 1825. I did some research and found that Britian had conflicts in Burma, Africa, and India about this time. Namely: First Anglo-Burmese War 1823-1826, Anglo-Asante War 1826, and the Jat War (Bhurtpore 1826). Since I am not English, these conflicts are unknown to me. I read the descriptions, but none of these seem to be a naval conflict. What did I miss?

Don


Don,
Don't discount that century's version of what is known today as "Foreign Military Sales." While the Royal Navy reigned supreme, other nations were building or maintaining navies and I imagine the Carron Ironworks sold items to them. Several years ago I came across a locker owned by an engineer aboard a U.S. Navy (Union) ship during the Civil War. The locker was made by the Carron Ironworks.

I have yet to return to their site, but 7 or 8 years ago they were in the practice of building porcelain items for restrooms (or loos as the term some on this board might be familiar.)

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Claude


Sun Jul 29, 2007 3:06 am
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Post Re: Why the miltary increase?
Actium Blue wrote:
Don't discount that century's version of what is known today as "Foreign Military Sales." While the Royal Navy reigned supreme, other nations were building or maintaining navies and I imagine the Carron Ironworks sold items to them. Several years ago I came across a locker owned by an engineer aboard a U.S. Navy (Union) ship during the Civil War. The locker was made by the Carron Ironworks.

I have yet to return to their site, but 7 or 8 years ago they were in the practice of building porcelain items for restrooms (or loos as the term some on this board might be familiar.)

Claude, that's a very interesting point. Foreign sales is something I never considered and it makes perfect sense. It certainly happens today.

Carron Ironworks making and selling lockers and porcelain toilets is something entirely new to me. I tried to find a detailed history of that company a few years ago without much success. I even asked a friend of mine who took a brief trip to that part of the UK to check it out. He and his wife really did not find out anything as the factory was closed when he stopped by. He did take a few photos of carronades which he brought back to me. I did get some basic information from the Internet and, from time to time, see a reference in a book or two, like Lavery's "The Arming and Fitting of English Ships of War 1600-1815."

Thanks for the help,
Don


Sun Jul 29, 2007 5:06 am
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Post Carronade increase
Broos Campbell wrote:
You went from "military increase" to wondering about naval conflicts.

Broos, I just now happened to notice your post on this. You are absolutely correct that I switched gears. Mary's original post included both army and navy items. After noting the general "military" increase, I pointed out that I could only find land engagements during the period.

Since these land engagements explained the army items, I was trying to focus on the naval aspect. That is why my question only dealt with the naval increase for carronades. Sorry I made my post so muddled.

I think Claude (Actium Blue) zeroed in on a very logical reason for, not only the carronade increase at the time, but something that could add to the overall increase at the Carron Ironworks factory -- foreign sales.

Don


Mon Jul 30, 2007 10:44 am
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Post Re: Carronade increase
timoneer wrote:
Broos, I just now happened to notice your post on this. You are absolutely correct that I switched gears. Mary's original post included both army and navy items. After noting the general "military" increase, I pointed out that I could only find land engagements during the period.

Since these land engagements explained the army items, I was trying to focus on the naval aspect. That is why my question only dealt with the naval increase for carronades. Sorry I made my post so muddled.


That explains it, then. And I should point out that I assumed Don assumed. :oops:

timoneer wrote:
I think Claude (Actium Blue) zeroed in on a very logical reason for, not only the carronade increase at the time, but something that could add to the overall increase at the Carron Ironworks factory -- foreign sales.


I haven't checked its sources, but the Wikipedia entry on the Carron Company says the company not only sold arms to foreign governments, but even to the U.S. during the War of 1812. "Typical Scots," says Mr. Campbell.

Carron is back in business in Falkirk as the Carron Group, Ltd., at the old Carron Works, and is owned by one of the Franke companies, presumably but not necessarily Franke Holding AG in Switzerland. Franke AG's entry on Hoover's doesn't mention it, but it's so huge that that doesn't surprise me.

Apparently Carron made a lot of the old telephone kiosks, btw.

Broos

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