Metal Detectors


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FRIENDLY
June 22, 2005, 12:54 AM
I was just wondering just how the new metals in revolvers go passing metal detectors Titanium Scandium and so on.I am not referring to the myth concerning Glocks not reading that has been clearly refuted and proved to be a Media beatup.

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Cesiumsponge
June 22, 2005, 01:34 AM
If the object is considered metallic, I am fairly certain induction based metal detectors (not sure if they all are) would still detect them since anything conductive (all metals are) could be detected. If it's set up for broadband detection, I don't see a reason it'd be any harder to spot. Titanium is everywhere and scandium is used in aluminum alloys. Those elements have always been around; they've just fallen popular lately with the gun manufacturers.

jpIII
June 22, 2005, 08:51 AM
Being that the barrel inserts are till going to be made of steel, even all of the new super duper light alloy guns will still be detected.

By the way the, the scandium J-frame is such a pleasure to carry if you don't mind the price. ( shameless plug) :evil:

Onmilo
June 22, 2005, 11:02 AM
OK you picked my interest.
I have a Bounty Hunterl Quick Draw II detector and passed it over a 329 revolver laying on the surface of the yard.
The detector was set on medium high sensitivity and set to all metal detection mode.
The revolver registered as a pull tab, middle of the detection grid and registered as between 4" and 6" in depth. HTH

I have a friend in local law enforcement who has used a metal detector to locate throw away handguns.
It is quite popular here for folks who are being pursued by Police to pitch their piece.
Extra time for having a gat on your person here so off it goes into the wild blue yonder, loaded or not, who cares if a little kid finds it, it ain't on the perps person so that means it ain't his.
Most of these guns are zinc/Pot metal cheapees and he manages to find most of them

benEzra
June 22, 2005, 11:10 AM
Scandium alloy guns would register the same as regular aluminum frame guns (Sc alloys are mostly aluminum with a percentage of scandium to greatly increase the strength and durability of the alloy).

4t5
June 22, 2005, 11:13 AM
The last time I flew, when going through the metal detector, I had on my brass beltbuckle and my stainless steel watch. It didn't make a peep and I went right through. It seems to me that they just detect ferrous metals. Will somebody please educate me on this?

jobu07
June 22, 2005, 11:37 AM
Ya know, it suprised the heck out of me a few weeks ago. I was on my way out of the County Office building which houses our county court system and all the clerks etc so you have to pass through metal detectors. I was registering a pistol (no I didn't have it on me!) and was leaving the office building. In the parking lot getting back into my car I realized I had my pocket knife clipped to my waistband the entire time! :what: Stainless steal blade about 4" long and an "alloy" handle/grip. I nearly always remember to take it off and leave it in the console when I go in, but geeze. I was shocked I made it through. Do these things not pick up aluminum or stainless steals?

Kramer Krazy
June 22, 2005, 11:57 AM
I've had a 15" titanium rod in my right femur since July 2000, and it has never been detected at the airport. I even told the attendant manning the detectors, so she waved her detector wand over my right leg and it still didn't set the thing off. She asked me if it was stainless or titanium, and when I told her it was titanium, she said that their detectors won't pick up titanium and certain grades of stainless. My wife also has a bit of hardware in her body from an accident, and she's never set a detector off, either (she has more metal in her than I do).

With all the ceramic and titanium knives available, I'm sure a few of those have been on planes since 9/11. Not even to mention the hard plastic ones that you can purchase. If you had enough money and the machining abilities, you could make a titanium gun that would serve any short-term service you needed it for, also.

Onmilo
June 22, 2005, 12:38 PM
There is more than enough steel in a Scandium/Titanium firearm to register on current metal detectors.
Ceramics, there is a one shot wonder possibility.
I wouldn't wish to fire an all Titanium firearm though the resulting flash/explosion would probably be spectacular.

Kramer Krazy
June 22, 2005, 01:01 PM
"Ceramics, there is a one shot wonder possibility."

Heaven forbid anyone making a gun out of ceramics. I know I wouldn't want to shoot it. :eek:



"I wouldn't wish to fire an all Titanium firearm though the resulting flash/explosion would probably be spectacular."

Hmmmm....now you have me wondering about any titanium alloy differences between the undetectable rod in my femur and an alloy that would/could be used in a firearm...... <confused little brain cells lacking in metallurgy knowledge tripping all over themselves> :confused: :D

Preacherman
June 22, 2005, 02:55 PM
Kramer, it's obviously a case of a bull (barrel) in a china shop (gun)... :D

Zundfolge
June 22, 2005, 03:07 PM
it doesn't matter what the gun is made of.

6 rounds (maybe even less) of 9mm in your pocket will set off most metal detectors.

Tim L
June 22, 2005, 03:31 PM
my eye glasses frame (supposedly made of titanium) set off the metal detector at the McDill AFB air show this past April. if that small amount of metal can set off a detector then almost any amount should.

Tim

Father Knows Best
June 22, 2005, 04:01 PM
It depends entirely on the specific alloy and how it has been worked. For example, there are many different types of "stainless steel." Some are almost completely non-magnetic, and will not trigger airport metal detectors (which work by measuring fluctuations in magnetic fields). An example is 316L stainless, which is commonly used for surgical tools and implants. I've gone through airport metal detectors with a pound and half of 316L stainless steel in my pockets and had no problem (I work for a surgical device company).

Stainless firearms are not made of 316L, however, and every firearm that is composed primarily of non-magnetic materials also has significant amounts of other materials that certainly will trigger metal detectors.

I have no idea what would happen if you tried to fashion a firearm completely from 316 stainless. We use it for surgical implants and instruments because of its excellent corrosion and fatigue resistance, and its immunity to magnetic fields. It probably is far from the best alloy for containing the pressure of a pistol or rifle round being discharged.

enfield303
June 22, 2005, 07:08 PM
My Limited edition Mall Ninja Special solid Titanium Ninja Sword(Patent Pending) will go through any metal detection device known to man, and not be picked up. Of course, I'm still trying to figure out how to get it past x-ray. :rolleyes:

FRIENDLY
June 22, 2005, 08:11 PM
to Zundfolge-that comment concerning the bullets- there was a training round in .38 special plastic case lead wadcutter projectile normal primer that couldnt set anything off.I have gone through metal detectors also with a Kershaw knife in sheath on my hip with no alarms so it seems that there is an amount of confusion about this.makes for interesting thoughts about the real security or implied security involved.

Tankcommander
June 22, 2005, 08:32 PM
I have found most surgical implants will set off the walk through metal detectors but if the person has some meat on their bones it will not set off the hand held metal detectors. Knee replacements usually titanium always set it off but the hip replacements are much deeper in the body. The hand helds will find a gum wrapper in your pocket or a penny so if there is any metal in the, gun springs and such it should be discovered during a proper hand wanding. Now many court houses and security companies do not do it right.

The walk through metal detectors in the airports are very sensitive and I think they can pick up 99.9% of firearms. The best thing would be the new back scatter X-ray thats in the works.

TC

Kramer Krazy
June 23, 2005, 12:39 PM
I have found most surgical implants will set off the walk through metal detectors but if the person has some meat on their bones it will not set off the hand held metal detectors.

Ah...I see, now.....I'm fat :( :D The only thing I've ever had get caught by the detectors in an airport are the zippers on my black-leather, biker jacket. I've never had car keys, fingernail clippers, my wire frame glasses, my belt buckle, nor five rounds of 45ACP trigger the detector here (the last time I was near one was 3 years ago, though). My grandfather has often walked through the detectors with 38 Spl rounds in his pocket without setting off the detectors (their eyes get really big when he accidentally places them in the bowl with his car keys, though). :what:

Tankcommander
June 23, 2005, 03:00 PM
I never said fat just big boned :D Most of the Airport metal detectors were replaced about 2 years ago with more sensitive models made by CEIA. These days 1 round of any type of live ammo means a call to the police. High content gold jewlery will not set off the metal detecter.

TC

Kramer Krazy
June 23, 2005, 05:38 PM
"I never said fat just big boned"


Oh, let's not try to sugar-coat anything.....I'm fat. I admit it. :(

Cesiumsponge
June 23, 2005, 06:47 PM
I think it also depends what the metal detecting machines are calibrated for. Different metals have different "profiles" registered on the machines because magnetic fields induced on different elemental metals will be discernable from one another. Coppers, brass, and lead are used in ammunition, but in general aren't used in firearms themselves. Its conceivable (and I am not stating it as fact) that the sensitivity on firearms-related metals like nickel, titanium, aluminum, steels,and similar are set on a higher sensitivity and that brasses, coppers, which might be set on a lower sensitivity or ignored altogether.

I'm curious if pennies would set off the metal detectors since they're mostly zinc with a thin copper cladding. I can't think of any dangerous devices utilizing zinc but I don't wish to be a subject of an experiment :p

Gunpowders would have to be detected through other means. The X-ray machines are generally very good provided the operator knows what to look for. I've had the strip-search treatment once when a minitripod (4" tall fully extended) roused suspicion through the X-ray machine.

The only real way to find out would be perhaps asking one of the people who operate these machines, albiet the technicians are probably the only who know since they calibrate and set these machines up.

STW
June 23, 2005, 07:15 PM
Several years ago an uncle of mine manufactured the NAA mini-revolvers. As a test they put one in each cup of a police woman's bra and sent her through security at the Salt Lake airport. Nothing was discovered. They told security she was carrying and still nothing could be found. He told me it was to quality of the stainless steel used and he could hide a .454 Casull (which he also manufactured at the time) if he used the same steel.

I assume detectors are better today than then, some 30 years ago.

Father Knows Best
June 23, 2005, 07:41 PM
He told me it was to quality of the stainless steel used and he could hide a .454 Casull (which he also manufactured at the time) if he used the same steel.

I assume detectors are better today than then, some 30 years ago.


Nope. It's not the detectors; it's the alloy. All austenitic grades (300 series) of stainless steel are almost completely nonresponsive to magnetic fields in their annealed states. Some of the low-nickel austenitic grades will develop a magnetic response when they are cold worked, but the high nickel grades (310 and 316, for instance) will not.

As I said before, I've recently passed through airport metal detectors with a pound and a half of 316L stainless in my pockets, and it wasn't detected.

That said, most stainless used in firearms is not austentic, it is martensitic (400 series). The martensitic grades are responsive to magnetic fields and will be picked up by metal detectors. The most common grade used for stainless steel barrels is 416.

Hawkmoon
June 23, 2005, 11:41 PM
Do these things not pick up aluminum or stainless steals?
Is a "stainless steal" sort of another way of describing a perfect crime?

Sorry ... I couldn't resist :evil:

Tom Bri
June 24, 2005, 07:39 AM
I have heard that sandwiches of ferrous and non-ferrous metals will not be detected. I don't know if it is true, but I have taken a large gerber folding knife, stainless blade and brass handle, through maybe a dozen airports in the US, Europe, and Asia and it has never been beeped. Once by accident took it into a US embassy, no beep there either. This was all several years ago, pre-9-11, so the machines may be updated or more sensitive now. I don't carry that knife anymore though, don't want to lose it.

Tankcommander
June 24, 2005, 05:13 PM
The hand wands are the ones that pick up pennies and foil. The walk through picks up large amounts of metal. The hand held emits a much more sensitive but smaller magnetic field. I work with all this stuff so I have some experiance,though I don't want to say who for. If the operators are sharp its difficult to get some thing large through. Though the female breast area is a sensetive subject. :D

TC

HankB
June 24, 2005, 05:25 PM
I have no idea what would happen if you tried to fashion a firearm completely from 316 stainless. I'm not an expert in metallurgy, but IIRC the 300-series stainless alloys are very corrosion resistant, but don't respond well to heat treatment. The 400- series stainless alloys can be heat treated, but aren't as corrosion resistant.

Wasn't there some sort of law passed a few years back mandating a certain amount of steel in firearms to assure detectability? (That's may be why they're not importing the famous porcelain Glock 7 from that Bruce Willis movie. :neener: )

armoredman
June 24, 2005, 05:33 PM
Our detectors are very sensitive - will pick up metal boot shamks, watches, badges, belt buckles, change, anything. I had one go off when a civilian female employee was coming into the unit for the first time, and wasn't aware of a restriction on a certain female undergarment. To make a long story short, instead of waiting for a female officer to arrive to pat search her, she sinply showed me her underwire...both sides....I am absolutely positive there was nothing else in there....my Main Control officer will never be the same....

Father Knows Best
June 24, 2005, 05:58 PM
I'm not an expert in metallurgy, but IIRC the 300-series stainless alloys are very corrosion resistant, but don't respond well to heat treatment. The 400- series stainless alloys can be heat treated, but aren't as corrosion resistant.

You are correct. The austenitic (300 series) alloys cannot be heat treated, but they are very corrosion resistant. The martensitic (400 series) can be hardened via heat treatment.

SLCDave
June 24, 2005, 05:58 PM
Tom Said: I have heard that sandwiches of ferrous and non-ferrous metals will not be detected.

I usually make my sandwiches with wheat bread and turkey or ham... I haven't had them set off a detector either.

The secret is in the sandwich... :D

armoredman
June 24, 2005, 07:10 PM
White bread, ham and swiss, mustard and mayo, doesn't set off the detector but does produce a gut rumble....
Seriously, find a harmless sandwiched metal item, and try to take it through an innocuous metal detector, like at a library....

geekWithA.45
June 24, 2005, 07:21 PM
I've found a slight mag field helps.

I had a flat pocket knife that I retired recently. Back in the old days, I'd take it on airplanes with me. It'd always setoff the metal detector, at which point the guard would take a look at it and wave me through.

Way back in ancient history, I was rocking out in my room, and for reasons that made perfect sense to me at the time, I fed my favorite pocket knife to the speaker magnet on my guitar amp, and forgot about it for a few days.

Naturally, it took on a magfield, which weakly persists to this day.

It hasn't bleeped a metal detector since.

It would be interesting to sort out the science behind that phenomena.

TaxPhd
June 25, 2005, 03:42 PM
This is interesting. I have a 10" titanium plate and 10 screws holding my left tibia together. I have never set off a metal detector.



Scott

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