Flintlock blunderbuss were typically very short, with cannons less than 60 cm long, at a time when a musket's barrel measured more than 90 cm. The firing mechanism was based on a flint or flint stone, which, when the hammer was operated, produced the spark that ignited the gunpowder after each shot. Generally the weapon was loaded with a single lead bullet, although it could also be used with several smaller bullets (pellets). Used by pirates in the 18th century, the trabuco was very inaccurate, so it was more useful in boarding, during naval battles, where combat was at close range. In addition, these weapons were used for a single shot, since the reloading method was very slow and there was usually no time to reload it. Therefore the fighters after firing were forced to draw their sabers or swords or use the gun as a blackjack, since circumstances did not allow recharging it in time.