Cannonball guy help please.
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Thread: Cannonball guy help please.

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  1. #1

    Apr 2019
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    All Types Of Treasure Hunting

    Cannonball guy help please.

    I was doing a job in tahlequah oklahoma and I came across a cannonball and I asked him about it and he said he found it on his land down by the river i told him that i like it and he gave it to me. I have had it about 5 years and i cant find any info on it. It is slightly oblong and has a very visable seam. The wood core goes through the ball and has a hole drilled through it. Next to a tape measure it is close to 6in in diameter and roughly 30-40 lbs any info would help. And could this be worth anything?
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  2. #2
    Charter Member
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    While you are waiting for TheCannonballGuy to reply - I love this reply from him on thread CannonBallGuy .. Can you tell me anything about this? (Sep 30, 2012, 07:02 PM)

    Quote Originally Posted by TheCannonballGuy View Post
    You already know all (or most of) the following information... so it is mostly for other folks reading this post, because some of them don't already know it.

    First and foremost:
    ALL actual cannonballs were very carefully manufactured to be a "True-Sphere" ...meaning, as perfectly round as a glass marble, or a ball-bearing. Being out-of-round (even slightly egg-shaped, or with bumps, or a raised band, or a flat area) automatically disqualifies the "ball" from being a cannonball.

    Quite literally, millions of iron/steel balls have been manufactured for Civilian usage/purposes... never intended to be artillery projectiles. Some examples of non-artillery balls:
    Mining-&-Stonemilling Industry rock-crusher balls (called Mill-balls)
    Ornamental Ironwork balls (such as a gatepost-top)
    Sports Shot Put balls
    Counterweight balls.

    So, we cannonball collectors had to find a 100%-reliable way to tell actual cannonballs from the various other kinds of iron balls. The answer is to consult Historical artillery data, which gives us the very precise diameter and very-exact weight of of every kind of cannonball ever used in battle in America.

    Because super-precise measuring is crucially necessary, we "serious" collectors use super-precise tools. To measure the ball's weight, we use a digital Postal Shipping Scale, which measures in 1/10th-ounce graduations. You cannot trust household bathroom weighing-scales, which are typically inaccurate by 5% -- or more.

    For diameter, we use:
    1- a Digital Caliper, which measures in (at least) 1/100th-of-an-inch increments.
    2- if the ball is too large for a Digital Caliper, we use a Diameter-Tape (also called a Pi Tape).

    If the ball is indeed an Artillery projectile (cannonball, grapeshot-ball, canister-ball), its precise measurements will match up (within a very few 100ths-inch and a few ounces) with one of the Artillery ball sizes specified by the Army and Navy Artillery Ordnance Departments in the historical records.

    Creskol, your friend will need to do the super-precise diameter and weight measuring. If he needs instructions, send him to this Educational article: SolidShotEssentialsMod

    When he tells you the ball's very-exact diameter and weight measurements, go to the following webpage and look for a precise match-up. (The sizes given include Civil War, and some War-of-1812 and Revolutionary War artillery balls.) If there is no match-up, the ball is not a cannonball. www.civilwarartillery.com/shottables.htm

    For example, at the moment, the ball's diameter is reported to be 6 inches. According to the Historical cannonball size records, no 6.0-inch cannonball was ever used in an American battle. So, if its diameter really is 6.0-inches, it is not a cannonball. The two "nearest" actual cannonball sizes are .25-inch larger and .32-inch smaller than a 6.0-inch ball.

    I notice that the photo seems to show some areas on it which have no rust, and other areas which are rusty. That's not a good sign. But we'll wait to see what its precise measurements tell us.
    AARC, Truth, huntsman53 and 4 others like this.
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  3. #3
    Charter Member
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    Jun 2013
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    If in fact it is a cannonball and had a fuse, the reason it is somewhat oblong may be because it impacted with something very hard and did not explode. Anyways, welcome to the TNET forums and we hope you will tarry with us and share pics, info and stories of future finds!
    A2coins, Muddyz250 and Truth like this.

  4. #4
    us
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    I hope it is!! Please keep us informed
    Muddyz250 and A2coins like this.

  5. #5
    Charter Member
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  6. #6
    Charter Member
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    Best guess - Civil War period (perhaps Confederate) naval shell. The big guys were generally used either on ships, and that included gun barges up and down the Mississippi and it's tributaries, and also larger in place land fortifications. It's a very nice piece.
    A2coins and Truth like this.

  7. #7

    Dec 2016
    NW Alabama
    whites mx sport. DFX tesori tiger shark
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    definitely need precise measurements/wieght. 30-40lbs? Maybe a 20lb but what puzzles me is the oblong shape. The thickness and brittleness of shells would have broke IMO rather that bending
    Truth and A2coins like this.

  8. #8
    Educator

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    Muddyz250 wrote:
    > Cannonball Guy help please. I was doing a job in tahlequah oklahoma and I came across a cannonball and I asked him about it and he said he found it on his land down by the river i told him that i like it and he gave it to me. I have had it about 5 years and i cant find any info on it. It is slightly oblong and has a very visable seam. The wood core goes through the ball and has a hole drilled through it. Next to a tape measure it is close to 6in in diameter and roughly 30-40 lbs any info would help. And could this be worth anything?

    Sorry, but.... it is definitely not a cannonball, proven by the following reasons:
    1- The hole with the wood core goes all the way through the ball. Your photos show the hole is visible on opposite sides of the ball. That reason alone absolutely excludes it from being a cannonball. But there are other reasons too.
    2- Your report of the ball's diameter ("close to 6 inches") and weight ("30 to 40 pounds") prove it is solid-bodied... it has no cavity inside it for containing a gunpowder/explosive "bursting charge." The civil war Ordnance Manual says a 32-Pounder solid cannonball is 6.25" in diameter and weighed 32.4 pounds. Compare that with your ball, whose diameter-&-weight is essentially the same as that... which means your ball MUST be a solid (not hollow) one.
    3- You said its shape is "slightly oblong"... which, if it was a cannonball, would cause it to jam inside the cannon's barrel during loading or firing. That is why all actual cannonballs were as perfectly round as a glass marble or a ball-bearing.

    Again, I am sorry to have to disappoint your hopes, but those are the Facts. Still... let me say, you did the smart thing by posting it here for authentification as a cannonball -- or not. Please do not feel bad or stupid about that. It does sorta resemble a cannonball, so if I was a relic-hunter who had not read the article at the Link below, I would have done the same thing you did... post it in the What Is It forum, asking for ID-help.
    SolidShotEssentialsMod
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  9. #9

    Apr 2019
    2
    6 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    I guess i will pull the core
    And probe around the inside and see what come out thank you for your help
    TheCannonballGuy likes this.

 

 

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