Well, I'm sure every group is slightly different and some probably don't use the numbers. If memory serves me correctly, I'll go down the list (just for fun)
1. Looking down the barrel, stands on the right side of the gun at barrel's end.
Before Fire: Ramming the charge with ram end of the wet sponge.
After Fire: Wet sponge for sloppy awesomesauce. (extinguish embers and quick clean)
2. Looking down the barrel, stands on the left side of the gun at barrel's end.
Before Fire: Loading the charge (Ding Dong) after a hand delivery from the powder monkey. Yes powder monkey was indeed the correct term. To my knowledge, never given a number, but if I had to.. I would say #5 man who just stands by the ammo cart all day… boooooring (perfect job for the noobies).
After Fire: Worm (cleaning out the Ding Dong wrapper) and dry sponge to clean out the sloppy awesomesauce.
3. Looking down the barrel, stands on the left side of the gun's rear.
Before Fire: Priming wire. This is the guy with the long brass pin with a ring at the end. Slams this down the wire to puncture the charge and open up the ding dong (delicious).
After Fire: Vent pick to clean out any crap that could cause a fowling or misfire. Usually helps #4 insert and hold the primer. (Only until #4 has the lanyard snug, otherwise the primer wants to pop out while #4 walks back to firing postion).
4. Looking down the barrel, stands on the right side of the gun's rear
Before Fire: Hooks the lanyard to the primer. Yaaaaa, that's about it.
After Fire: Stands there until Before Fire: Lazy buggers!
5/Powder Monkey: Stands by the ammo crate and runs powder
Before Fire: RUN MONKEY RUN!
After Fire: RUN MONKEY RUN!
6/7/8: No reenactors needed but in Civil War they would prime the actual ammunition. Many rounds would have punch holes which had numbers on them. This is to open the round to allow fire in and ignite a fuse. The charge would then explode (say at 200 yards) instead of relying on a direct hit. Pretty nifty.
Gun Sergeant: At gun's rear but slap in the middle. These guys also generally make fun of us (in good sport) and act as a bridge between officers and peons (I mean privates/corporals). They also crack wise at the officers, bringing us peons great joy.
Before Fire: Aims and elevates the gun barrel.
After Fire: Looking pretty with those 3+ stripes. Also, making fun of us and cracking wise.
When #4 and using the lanyard, place the handle between your knee and hip on your leg. Instead of yanking the lanyard, keep your feet in the same place but turn left. Sometimes we'll yank the lanyard but loosen the tension and sometimes the lanyard hook will bounce out of the primmer hoop. Embarrassing.
Everyone should use gloves at all time. Welder gloves are perfect, except for #4 where deerskin help with the delicate nature of the job.
Why so much Brass everywhere? It doesn't make sparks unlike steel or iron, hence a much safer experience. You don't want that priming wire setting off a charge, now would
Perks of artillery.
When you get that sloppy powder/water mix on your clothes, it turns GREEN! Bringing character to your gear. Also, used primers pinned to your hat also give you more character.
Yaaaar I love to write long posts and I hope you mates like reading them =)
Everyone, feel free to message me or post with questions. A trip down memory lane =)
Our group (1815) has a Wormer, Spongerammer, Ventpick, Lintstock, Powder Monkey, and Gun Captain.
Gun Captain (rear of cannon) gives orders throughout, and pretends to sight the cannon.
Powder Monkey (rear of cannon) takes up the charge, and assists GC at pretending .
Sponge rammer (near muzzle, on right) wet-sponges before and after firing, and rams down charge.
Wormer (near muzzle, on left) worms before and after firing, and inserts charge.
Ventpick (near breech, on right) checks to make sure vent passage is clear, before and after firing, and punctures charge and inserts primer).
Lintstock (near breech, on left) ignites charge with burning cord held in lintstock.
And NOW, by Thunder: I need to go and get ready for cannon practice.