238 Art of Travel.
bore, carrying round bullets that weigh a quarter of a pound. The recoil is tremendous, and would injure the shoulder if the sportsman did not use a pad against which he rests the gun. The guns must be strong, because very large charges of powder are invariably used where great power of penetration is required. African sportsmen found this out experimentally long before the idea occurred to artillerists.
Sights.-The hind sight should be far from the eye, even though it be placed half-way down the barrel : else it becomes out of focus and indistinct, when the eye is firmly set on the object aimed at; this drawback is never compensated by the advantage of having the front and hind sights far asunder.
Ramrod.-The guns of servants and indeed those of their masters, should have thin soft-iron ramrods ; the elasticity of these when slightly bent, will retain them in the ramrodtubes ; both ends of the ramrod must be forged broad.
Screw to secure the Cock.-In common guns, this screw is very liable to get loose, fall out and be lost; it is therefore desirable to have one or more spare screws.
Water-proof Cover should not be forgotten.
Rust, to prevent.-Paraffine and mercurial ointment are perhaps the two best things to keep rust off iron, in sea voyages or in boat-shooting. Before embarking for a voyage, it is convenient to enclose the guns in a leaden case, which, on arrival, can be melted up into bullets. It is remarkable how much better dirty guns withstand rust than clean ones.
Olive oil, to purify.-Put a piece of lead in the glass bottle that contains the oil, and expose to the sun ; a quantity of cloudy matter will separate after a few days, then the refined oil may be decanted.
The small of the stock is the weakest part of a gun : it is constantly broken by falls in travel. Sir Samuel Baker justly recommends that " all guns made for sport in wild countries and rough riding, should have steel instead of iron from the