Sunday, January 31, 2010


Many years ago I bought a large-scale Civil War cannon at a junk store.  It had some hokiness to it and just last year I rehabed the carriage and the dry-rotted wheel spokes and made some minor modifications.  With a fresh coat of paint it looked pretty nice. save for the barrel.  Made of machined steel, it was in the profile of a bronze l2 pounder light gun howitzer barrel.  I preferred something a little more modern looking.  So, my first project on my woodlathe undertook the further transformation of my cannon into a 3-inch Parrott rifle.

Set-up was easy with a 15-inch length of 3x3 poplar.

Sawdust + chips = progress

The finished product in three pieces; barrel and left and right trunnions.  The trunnions were aligned to the sides of the barrel and glued and clamped into position.

I drilled out the muzzle with a 5/8" spade-bit and hand filed the distinctive Parrott-style lands and grooves of the rifling.

Primer, painting, sanding, followed by three more coats of black paint produced this.

Mounted up on its carraige this iron monster is ready to take to the field.

Next project?  I'm thinking a 14-inch Rodman gun.

That's going to take a pretty large piece of wood.

stay tuned!


Anonymous said...

Nice job Manny. I recently bought a minature Napoleon cannon at an antique store about a 1 1/2 years ago. Did some fixing up on it and it looks pretty good. I'll have to roll it up to your place and we can have DOUBLE the fire power.

Your Friend from Pennsylvania,
Mike Soohey

Unknown said...

Is that Bertha, the 15-in Rodman, from Fort Foote? Why stop there, how about Hilda, the 20-in big sister?

Anonymous said...

Very admirable work, sir!


Gary Dombrowski said...

Mannie, Very nice. ~Gary

Anonymous said...

Ha! You said, "Large piece of wood!"