Buy a 5gal bucket w/lid and a 50# sack of Play Sand

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by GBExpat, Oct 4, 2021.

  1. lysanderxiii

    lysanderxiii Member

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    My Dad recounts a story concerning one of these clearing barrels outside a "PX" in a largish base in Vietnam in the late 1960s.

    He was with a civilian engineer testing some new piece of equipment in location that required all US personnel to be armed, so both of them had been issued a pistol belt with an M1911A1 and three magazines and 21 rounds of ammunition. Obviously, two magazines went in the pouch, the third in the pistol, hammer down on an empty chamber. Both had gone through a one or two hour weapon familiarization before flying into the country, but my Dad, who had just left the Marine Corps as a Captain really didn't pay much attention to what was said.

    On the first day they were at the base around noon they decided to go over what passed for the PX to get some cigarettes or something like that. Right next to the entrance door there was the dirt filled 55 gallon drum clearing barrel, partially buried so that it leaned over at 45 degrees and the open top was just below waist level. A large sign above the barrel read:

    "EMPTY ALL WEAPONS BEFORE ENTRY"

    My Dad pulls out his pistol to remove the magazine and clear it, when all of a sudden:

    SCHRICK-SCHRACK BAM! BAM! BAM! BAM! BAM! . . . BAM! BAM!

    The other engineer "emptied" his pistol into the clearing barrel.

    The rest of the people on the compound were not amused, as they thought all the shooting was the start of some VC attack...
     
  2. herrwalther

    herrwalther Member

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    Another funny-ish clearing barrel story. On my OEF tour we were designated a "hot" base. Small, middle of nowhere, miles from support. If SHTF, it would take hours if not days to get support. So everyone was authorized and encouraged to carry with chambered weapons. And vast majority of us had sidearms. Short distance inside our front gate, we had 3 or 4 PVC pipes stuck in the ground. They were about 3 inches around and waist level. Many of our "visitors" assumed they were clearing barrels for weapons. They were not. They were urinals for those that didn't want to or couldn't go "#1" on the road. I know of at least 2 instance where we had visitors accidentally shoot a pipe of urine in a "clearing barrel."
     
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  3. gifbohane

    gifbohane Member

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    The guard shack on every base I was stationed at had 50 plus holes in the ceiling from us Marines clearing "empty" weapons. I, of course, was never guilty of this.................there were always repercussions.
     
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  4. BWS

    BWS Member

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    A bucket of sand can also plays a role in your emergency fire protection. Lots easier to clean up around precision equipment than chemical extinguishers(which are also needed).

    I also use a sand trap on one of our big bench grinders. The twin 3" metal ducts terminate into a 1/2 full container.
     
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  5. Demi-human

    Demi-human Member

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    I have one thing I’d like to point out.

    Use DRY sand.

    A five gallon bucket of dry sand will arrest a bullet fired from a 308 rifle. A bucket of wet sand will not.

    Water is a lubricant. Don’t let your bullets slip through!

    Also, the sand bucket is a lot heavier when it’s wet too!;)
     
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  6. Steve S.

    Steve S. Member

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    While serving during the first half of the ‘70’s, I witnessed one soldier shot right next to me by another and a couple of ND’s into clearing barrels prior to entering barracks/ mess hall - in turn, every year like sunrise you can bet that some number of deer hunters will self inflict or be shot by another, it is as predictable as sunrise. With that said, no firearm in any hands is ever 100% safe all of the time - people are people and eventually the planets will align and an ND will occur.
    For me, I cannot bring myself to CC a handgun with a round in the chamber. I (personally) CC to “have a chance to survive” when things go bad - on the very, very rare occasion that a firearm may be needed, having the firearm is infinitely better than having no firearm at all. When I do the math, my chances of a firearms engagement where I do not have a chance to rack the slide are so close to zero that they are nonexistent. In turn, when I do the math of daily handling of a handgun with a chambered round experiencing a ND, the odds increase dramatically due to the daily frequency of handling a loaded firearm.
    I realize that a firearm without a chambered round increases risk in a firefight - I know that - but if the math says that my chances of a ND is much greater than a firefight on a daily basis, then I listen to the math. I daily carry a CZ 75B with a full mag but never a chambered round - I play the odds and I am convinced that the odds are most definitely in my favor. I owe those odds to me but mostly, I owe those odds to the daily safety of my wife and these around me.
    Again, I realize that my practice is not ideal for CC BUT, I have to listen to the math - I purposely make my chances of an ND as close to zero as possible and I am good with that.
     
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  7. GAF

    GAF Member

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    I think most of went through a waiting period of 16 to 18 years before we could drive a car. I think there is not age limit for buying a can.
    At least non that I am aware of.

    Just be safe in you gun handling. I think about every step every time when unloading and loading a gun.
     
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  8. GBExpat

    GBExpat Member

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    That parallels my thinking on the subject. I, however, carry with one up the snout and have since I first started carrying. :)
     
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  9. GBExpat

    GBExpat Member

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    I have long thought of it as a Slow Down. Sometimes I even say that under my breath when I am initiating some action that could result in an AD/ND.
     
  10. LiberalVet

    LiberalVet Member

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    Some Operating Rooms require surgeons to use pre and post as urgent checklists. The majority of surgeons surveyed would want the checklists used if it’s them or their family member on the table. Makes sense, right? On the same survey the majority of surgeons do not want to have to follow checklists - they trust themselves.

    Same damn thing guns! People want to trust themselves and their skills, but it is FACT that merely having a gun in the house makes it more likely that a resident of that house will get shot. Largely because of unintended discharges.

    If you don’t have time to rack your slide, what the hell kind of situations are you putting yourself into? Your ego may be bulletproof but your warm, squishy body isn’t. Bullets don’t go boom in the magazine. Leave them there until needed, train on drawing and racking.


    Safety needs to be multi-layered. The sand bucket for hang-fires is a great idea.
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2021
  11. Brian Williams

    Brian Williams Moderator Emeritus

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    Screw Home Depot or Lowes, go to a painter or drywaller and ask them for a bucket and then go to a Masonry supply and buy the sand. Would be so much cheaper. Or find a job site near by and ask them.
     
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  12. bdickens

    bdickens Member

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    What's a FACT is that's a bald-faced lie ...
     
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  13. GBExpat

    GBExpat Member

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    And it is NOT a good idea to retrieve & open one of those discarded 5gal paint or sheetrock compound buckets from the rubbish pit of an ongoing job.

    They are often used as ersatz toilets.

    Now ... you have been warned ... :D
     
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  14. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

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    I love that one. OF COURSE someone is more likely to get shot in the home if a gun is in the home since it is remarkably unlikely to get shot without a gun being present. THAT isn't a useful argument.

    Safe gun handling is the responsibility of every gun owner, but you can't put laws in place that will prevent stupid people from doing stupid things. We already have laws against recklessly endangering others. What is needed is free training being offered to every gun buyer to make them aware of the risk and the means to reduce the risk. Good conversations like this one pointing out the means to reduce the potential for NDs is part of that solution, but it would help if we all spread the word about how to make handling firearms safer.
     
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  15. Roknstevo

    Roknstevo Member

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    Gun and vehicle laws protect no one. They merely help to clean up the messes of the irresponsible.
     
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  16. wesmonster

    wesmonster Member

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    Well FWIW I had a 5 gallon bucket half filled with sand I’d use as a bulletrap for rimfire, and only fired CB shorts or CCI Quiet 22.
    After about 20 rounds I pierced the bottom. Fortunately my garage has a concrete floor but muzzle blast was pushing the sand to the side.
    So I built another one, but this time I started with an inch of sand, then a 1/8” tempered steel plate, then 3” of egg rock & gravel and then filled up to 2” from the top with sand.
    But that is just for weak .22 loads. I would not expect 5 gallons of sand to stop a 9mm round. I’d at least have an AR500 steel target at the bottom and hope it wouldn’t ricochet.
    Man, there’s an idea, an inverted cone shaped piece of AR500 steel that’s sized to fit in a 5 gallon bucket. Buy bucket & sand, there’s your trap. The cone shape should keep ricochets down.
     
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