Wednesday, February 16, 2011

One lucky SOB. Here's a safety tip about shooting at steel plates.

Folks, this is almost four years old, but when Threeper Ron sent it to me it was the first time I had seen it.

The video came to me with this commentary:

Turn your sound up so you can hear the bullet head back. This guy is shooting a 50 cal rifle. Watch the dust when he fires. The target is a steel plate, 1000 yards away. You can hear the ping of the hit and then hear the bullet coming back. It hits the ground just in front of him, then bounces up, hits the earmuffs, knocking them from his head. The footage is amazing. You can hear the bullet as it tumbles through the air on its course back toward the shooter. He's lucky it hit the dirt first. He is okay and obviously very lucky.


Miss Violet said...

Well, DUH! Shooting at steel plates?????

Rhodes said...

You have to admit that was a hell of bank shot. But can he do it again?

Gaviota said...

Oh, come on. Steel plate shooting is not only common, it's a popular form of competition with shotguns, rifles, and handguns.

The problem here may have been that the steel plate was firmly fixed in the ground instead of being flex-mounted on hinges, springs, or swivels.

This is really an extraordinary occurance. Was it really a thousand yards?

Sean said...

Louder, and funnier!

Anonymous said...

Not 1000 yds. If the round is going 3000 fps it's going to take a full second to go 1000 yds. This hit is instantly after the shot. More like 50 yds. You can see the black target on the ground, and see the hit. 50 yds on steel with any rifle is dumb!

Shy Wolf said...

Being a 'steel' shooter, I've had bullet fragments whiz past my ear and even pulled some out of the shooting hand.
ANYone who doesn't wear safety glasses and a hat is just asking for trouble.
But this shot takes the award for ricochet, that's for sure!

Defender said...

Anon 8:05 seems correct. The sound of the hit reaches the camera less than a second after the shot. I betcha the plate was LEANING against something, providing the perfect angle of return, rather than facing down to deflect the bullet into the dirt.
Hold muh beer and watch THIS!

Miss Violet said...

If someone wants to shoot at steel plates, go for it, I don't care one way or another. As far as doing something on the reasoning it is common and popular, well, I'll use my own judgement instead.

Gaviota said...

As far as doing something on the reasoning it is common and popular, well, I'll use my own judgement instead.

Well, good for you, Miss Violet. As I'm not interested in a snark war here, this is my last comment on the subject.

I'm sure your judgement is just as good as that of all the tens of thousands of shooters in all of the IPSC, IDPA, USPSA, SAS, NRA, and USAAMU Three Gun competitions over the last 20 or 30 years. Smart people know their limitations.

Have a nice day.

Dedicated_Dad said...

Not even close to 1000 yards, Not sure this was any steel-plate, either - unless he was shooting some exotic bullets.

We shoot steel plates all the time - have one at max-distance on he range at my club. Standard FMJ/HP/SP/Etc bullets splatter to nothing. APs will bore a hole right through it.

Ms. Violet -- steel plate targets are among the most common for matches of all sorts, and at surprisingly short ranges for pistols and pistol-caliber rifles to boot. Just search-engine-search for "steel plate match" or "silhouette shooting" "cowboy action shooting" "pepper poppers" -- these are just a few of the different types of steel-plate targets in use.

Anonymous said...

If it was a steel plate, it was mounted wrong or too close or both.

Someone already commented about suspended and / or swinging plates. I think these are best for rifles as they can absorb some of the energy and all the bullet to continue to move in the direction it was traveling.

For solid or mounted plates, they should be made from appropriate steel and angled so that the round is directed down toward the ground when it impacts the target.

Any of the professional (and generally expensive) steel plates are designed in such a way that the round is deflected toward the ground as described above.

Scott J said...

Having personally shot steel dingers at ranges from 200 to 1,000 yards with .308 and .30-06 I'll agree with those who state the target had to be closer than 1,000.

Still a sobering reminder that our weapons are dangerous tools (just like our lawn mowers and chainsaws) so we must always keep safety in mind.

ASM826 said...

This video has been kicking around a long time. I remember getting together with a friend and timing the shot to return time. I think we figured the outside distance was 150 yds.

A thousand yards for a .50BMG going out is~ 1.5 seconds. The return would have to be longer, as the bullet is now deformed, lost some energy on the target, and is still slowing down. I think the overall time would be closer to 4 seconds to get there and back.

Additionally, that round would have had to hit that steel at quite an angle and lobbed back like a mortar round to make it back at all. If it hit a flat vertical plate, it would fall into the ground just a few yards back from the target. It has to have climbed and fallen about 300 inches (plus or minus) to hit a 1000 yard target, if it ricocheted back it would have to climb higher and fall more. Remember, It's only going ~1700fps when it gets to the target. If it loses some energy there, gets deformed, and then has to fly a 1000yds back, how fast could it possibly be going, and how many hundred inches up would it have to go before it fell?

Anonymous said...

It's a sewer cover. The original video has been on youtube for years.