15
   

Shooting a bullet into water

 
 
High Seas
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Jun, 2009 11:15 am
@Jane Pagel,
Jane Pagel wrote:

Thank you too, High Seas. I knew it made no sense. But to be safe we'll stay away from the pond when shooting. Hah!


Not just the pond - any reflective surface (glass, metal plate, etc) is more likely to cause a ricochet than a non-reflective one (like sand). And the general ballistics equations take no account of projectile composition, only of its mass, so keep in mind that lead bullets tend to ricochet more than those manufactured of most other metals or alloys.
0 Replies
 
McTag
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Jun, 2009 03:15 pm
@Setanta,

Quote:
My argument is not that splinters were more lethal (although we haven't touched upon the subject of mortal wounds), but that they caused more casualties than the shot itself.


When you consider that the impact of one heavy cannonball could give rise to a great many "splinters" (flying chunks of seasoned oak) it's no wonder to me that the splinters caused more casualties than the actual shot itself.
0 Replies
 
maturin
 
  1  
Reply Sun 21 Mar, 2010 10:58 am
@mysteryman,

In the Age of Sail, chains were not shot at personnel, they were shot at rigging. Snipers were only effective at close range with their inaccurate muskets, while naval cannon could penetrate oak at distances over a mile and produced clouds of splinters that traveled for 40 yards. Explosive shot and fire shot were rarely used. The vast majority of all casualties in gunnery battles (such as most fleet engagements) were caused by shrapnel, and that should be self-evident.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XfsuIaTU92Y

Look at that video. That's not mythbusters you're looking at, that is a real gun and a real ship. No weapon of the period can compare to those clouds of splinters. They are really are interior grapeshot. You would need a modern grenade to match the effect. Towards the end there is a piece of wood only four inches long that penetrated a plywood dummy. Imagine what that would do to flesh: a casualty for sure. Lethality isn't almost never the point in combat, and in any case, getting sprayed with a dozen pieces of shrapnel is more deadly than a soft, low velocity musket ball any day.

This is how damage was done to men on the gun deck. They were protected from small arms and grapeshot pretty well, so roundshot would be relied on. Direct hits would dismount cannon and splinter rigging, but the splinters were the main issue. The gun in the video is a 32 pound carronade, firing a ball 6 inches in diameter. A smaller ball, such as 6-pounder, may have difficulty piercing a warship's hull, but it would still cause splinters, especially if it hit something above decks, like a mast. As seen in the video, small splinters can be dangerous, but with guns that small you wouldn't hope to do much damage. Guns as small as 9 and 12 pounders were used in frigate engagements which could be very lethal.
0 Replies
 
gungasnake
 
  1  
Reply Sun 21 Mar, 2010 10:58 am
@Jane Pagel,
Shooting into water is a really bad idea. All kinds of things can happen, none of them good.
0 Replies
 
2PacksAday
 
  1  
Reply Sun 21 Mar, 2010 10:38 pm
@farmerman,
farmerman wrote:

As I said, if speeds were the same, the big shot would do more damage (but with aforce only by an amount roughly 2 times the smaller). If the small shot travels at twice the muz velocity as the larger. the force of impact for a small (6lb) would be 4 times greater than a 12 pounder. . simple physics. Now , if they could achieve some muz velocities that we can get on , say, a 50 cal barrett, the smaller shots would have gone in and ricocheted all around the enclosed space.


I only quote you FM, because you mentioned "richochet" and of course your choice of avatar.

During Grants attack on Fort Donelson, a few days before the full assult got underway, the Carondelet, a Union ironclad, moved up and fired a few shots at the fort, but received no return fire. The next day they tried it again and the fort opened up with everything they had, during the exchange a 128 pound ball, fired from a 10 inch columbiad found it's way into the interior of the ship and bounced around wildly injuring a dozen men, seven of them were seriously hurt.
0 Replies
 
RayEGarcia
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 May, 2015 05:20 am
@Jane Pagel,
It depends on where you hit the person, but water provides so much resistance that you can in fact avoid them by going underwater. though hornady bullets have some resistance.

I'm not sure of exact depths, but deeper is of course better.
Anything less than 2 feet the bullet will probably still penetrate.
Ragman
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 May, 2015 01:07 pm
@RayEGarcia,
You might want to check out the timestamp as this was an inactive thread from 5 years ago. Don't expect the OP to reply, but perhaps others will be interested.
0 Replies
 
RayEGarcia
 
  0  
Reply Tue 12 May, 2015 02:01 am
That's not true....!!!!!
How much resistance, water offers against the speed of the bullets?
0 Replies
 
JudyWeaver
 
  1  
Reply Mon 27 Jul, 2015 06:00 am
You need to specify more about your question.
0 Replies
 
HesDeltanCaptain
 
  1  
Reply Thu 6 Aug, 2015 08:02 am
@Jane Pagel,
Depending on the bullet's velocity, it'll either penetrate a ways into water, or completely break apart hitting. Generally, a subsonic round will penetrate a few feet, supersonic rounds fragment. But once a round hits something it never accelerates, it slows down. A lot. Smile
0 Replies
 
 

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