What’s a Steam Gun?

With steam power a driving force for manufacturing, land, sea and river travel in 19th Century America, inventors sought ways to use steam power for military purposes. These devices took two main forms:

Steam Guns – these devices attempted to harness steam directly from a boiler to propel shot.

“Centrifugal” Steam Guns – these devices used steam power to drive mechanisms that moved shot in a circular fashion, ala a sling shot, and released them in the direction of the target in somewhat of a controlled matter. Though the description of centrifugal, is perhaps not the most correct in terms of science, it is of the period, and inventors of these devices often talked of harnessing the same forces that moved the universe for destructive purposes.

Besides a focus on these sorts of guns, this blog will from time to time, look at various hand powered approaches to centrifugal guns…

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