Archive for February, 2013

The Lady Washington and The Hawaian Chieftan

February 20, 2013

Over President’s Weekend these two tall ships were in port here in Morro Bay. On Saturday, Sunday and Monday, they were giving 3 hour “Battle Cruises”. Well, that had to be something to be experienced, so Mrs. Smoke and I went online, got our tickets, and Monday afternoon, there we were, anxiously awaiting permission to board. Finally, about 10 till 2 we were allowed on board and a little after two, we set out. Going out of the harbor, it was all diesel power, but once we got into deep water, the deck hands got to really show off. Man, those guys hit the rigging like a bunch of monkeys. I would imagine a prerequisite for the job is no fear of heights.

Crew going up to set the sails to come down!

Crew going up to set the sails!

Finally, with the sails all set and the diesel turned off, we commenced the battle. Now, there is only one gunner’s mate, so the rate of fire is pretty slow. He only has two 3 pounder cannons on the main deck (one port and one starboard) and two swivel guns on the quarter deck. No long thundering barrages like in the movies.

Anyway, here is the swivel gun letting loose with a 700 grain charge.

John was the only one on the ship to catch the muzzle flash of the 3 pounder cannon.

John was the only one on the ship to catch the muzzle flash of the swivel gun.

A little later in the day, I got this photo of the Chieftain taking a shot at us. I just missed the muzzle flash on this one. From what I could figure out, they are using about 1,200 grains in the 3 pounders to make it go boom.

Cannon fire for the Hawaiian Chiefton

Cannon fire from the Hawaiian Chieftain

This was a very interesting way to spend an afternoon. I will probably be back on board next year.

John

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Semi-Reproduction of “The Buckskinner” Tansel Horn by Larry Gotkin

February 7, 2013

This is a picture of an original Tansel horn that was auctioned at Cowan’s auctions in Cincinnati, Ohio.

"Image courtesy of Cowan's Auctions, Inc., Cincinnati, Ohio."

Original Tansel Horn “Image courtesy of Cowan’s Auctions, Inc., Cincinnati, Ohio.”

Larry Gotkin Horn with Eagle and serpent.

Larry Gotkin Horn with Eagle and serpent.

 

Larry Gotkin only had pictures of this horn and was able to create a semi-reproduction that was very pleasing to his  client.  The client realized that creating a copy was impossible.

Finding a good horn was difficult.  Powder Horns and More supplied the horn.  The shape is not perfect but Larry felt style of the horn was very good.

The original horn is 16″ length. It is engraved with the Eagle clutching arrows and sheaths of wheat, E. Pluribus Unum in a banner above the eagle, a hunter (i.e. the “Buckskinner”) hunting deer.

It has a nice serpent’s mouth (fish mouth) with the teeth carved protruding on to the spout. This particular horn has been nicknamed the “Buckskinner’s powder horn.”

It is interesting because it has a screw top, wood base with iron loop and another iron loop near the spout.

One large brass tack has been in the base of the horn for a long time, it has a beautiful dark brown halo around it.

View of the Original's throat and tip. "Image courtesy of Cowan's Auctions, Inc., Cincinnati, Ohio."

View of the Original’s throat and tip. “Image courtesy of Cowan’s Auctions, Inc., Cincinnati, Ohio.”

Tansel 02

Larry Gotkin Horn with E. Pluribus Unum in a banner above the eagle,

"Image courtesy of Cowan's Auctions, Inc., Cincinnati, Ohio."

“Image courtesy of Cowan’s Auctions, Inc., Cincinnati, Ohio.”

There is a fringed-shirted hunter carrying a flintlock and a striped hound.

Larry Gotkin's interpretation of the original horn.

Larry Gotkin’s interpretation of the original horn.

Tansel 01 Tansel 03 Tansel 04

Tansel 08

It took a lot of work, and several re-scrapings before Larry got “into” the drawing style.  The original is dated 1790 just below the eagle’s tail, which he included as well, but Larry also signed and  dated his logo.

This is a great example of contemporary workmanship done in the style of an original horn.

http://www.larrygotkin.com

PowderHorns and More supplied the cow horn that was a similar size and shape.

PowderHorns and More supplied the cow horn that was a similar size and shape. The beginning of a masterpiece with only four pictures to go by.

Detail of the screw tip on the horn.

Detail of the screw tip on the horn.

tan18

First attempt at the Eagle

tan20

Another attempt at the Eagle

Tansel 07

The finished Eagle with stain.