To convey projectiles to the muzzle of a heavy R.M.L. gun a shot bearer was provided. The one for the 9-inch had handles made of iron tubing.
Shot bearer for a 7-inch RBL 1861.
This pattern replaced an earlier one. The handles of the bearer were arranged so that the when lifted and carried the projectile could not fall out. The bearer is made of iron and is known as 'Alderson's Pattern'. The handles are covered with leather. Two were issued with each 7-inch RBL gun.
A 'Bearer, Shot, B.L. 6-inch Mark I' was made of ash, 4 feet in length 23/4 inches in diameter at the middle, tapering to 1 1/2 inches at the end. A groove was cut in the centre to receive the selvagee by which the projectile is slung. It was used with 6-inch B.L. guns in the Land Service when mounted on Hydo Pneumatic Carriages.
These replica shot bearers were made for HMS Warrior 1860 and are 7inch RBL versions. The Navy used canvas bearers for their RML guns.
Early gun barrrels were fitted with two studs screwed into the muzzle of the barrel before issue. The shot bearer had two hooks to engage with the studs whilst loading the projectile. The studs can be seen on this R.M.L.
Until November 1871 many RML guns 7-inch to 10-inch were furnished with these two studs. After this date they were abolished as they were found to be unnecessary and sometimes even in the way of loading. Guns were then provided with preserving screws for these holes. The shot bearers then had their hooks removed.
The preserving screws can be seen in the muzzle of this RML