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Here's why you don't shoot over water.

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by silicosys4, Jun 13, 2013.

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  1. silicosys4

    silicosys4 Member

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    Here is a good video that shows why its not always a good idea to just toss something out into a pond to plink at, or to shoot at random things floating in the water.

    http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=b52_1371102793

    Shows a guy firing a few mags of tracers from an AR into the surface of what I assume is a deserted lake. Man, those things go eeeeverywhere.
    Pretty neat, and definitely an eye opener about how the wave surface of a lake can really affect how your ricochets disperse
     
  2. General Geoff

    General Geoff Member

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    Tracers really do provide a vivid example of why good backstops are important.
     
  3. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

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    Yep

    When I was a kid a buddy of mine and I inadvertantly worked our way around a small cove and skipped rounds went from hitting in an unpopulated ridge to skipping out and over the nose of the point to a neighbors. We received a brief but stern lecture on knowing what was down range and on the stupidity of shooting at the water.
     
  4. Sentryau2

    Sentryau2 Member

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    I've shot into the water at floating targets with .22s and even my ar. Just dont spray and pay attention to the angle that you are shooting at. I've never had bullets ricochet off of water, but I have had it happen with ice.
     
  5. SharpsDressedMan

    SharpsDressedMan member

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    Are ya sure? :banghead:
     
  6. silicosys4

    silicosys4 Member

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    How could you tell?
    Those things were going straight up, almost 90 degrees to each side...what I got out of that video is if I couldn't see a ricochet impact, I can just assume it ricocheted straight up, or off to one side at a crazy angle, so I didn't see it impact.
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2013
  7. Zoogster

    Zoogster Member

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    It shows a lot.

    The guy in the video is shooting at a relatively small point, yet the projectiles are covering a nearly 90 degree arc with some stray rounds. Veering far off to the sides.
    Someone more casually shooting at various objects rather than a fixed point would be covering an even larger zone. Someone shooting within a 90 degree area in front of them towards a safe direction would probably have richochet risks covering nearly 180 degrees.

    Beyond that I have never been fond of shooting being done around water more than necessary. Filling bodies of water with large quantities of lead seems like one of the less respectful things one could do to nature.
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2013
  8. Sentryau2

    Sentryau2 Member

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    You can always HEAR ricochets I've never NOT been able to hear one, you can also tell by the sound of the impact it makes on the water.
     
  9. Potatohead

    Potatohead Member

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    OMG thats nuts! Thanks for the video
     
  10. silicosys4

    silicosys4 Member

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    Really....through ear protection and gunfire magnified by echoing off of the water...you didn't hear any ricochet whines, or telltale splashes....so there must not have been ricochets.

    K

    :banghead:


    BTW, how do you know if you've heard every single ricochet that you've ever had? If it went straight up and DIDN'T make a noise, and DIDN'T make an obvious impact downrange, could it be that you would assume you didn't have a ricochet when you actually did?
    Just sayin, might want to rethink your logic a bit.
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2013
  11. BADUNAME30

    BADUNAME30 Member

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    Must be nice to own all that land with a lake that big on it.
    That was seriously irresponsible.
     
  12. 45_auto

    45_auto Member

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    Why was it irresponsible?
     
  13. silicosys4

    silicosys4 Member

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    It wasn't..............
    If he owns the lake or is coordinating with whoever does, (and it would have to be a wholly private lake)
    and a big enough area of land around that lake that he is sure that those ricochets are going to land on his property,
    and can account for 100% of the people that are on his property or supposed to be on that property as being out of the way of those bullets, WHEREVER they may land.

    Other than that, you don't know who's hiking, camping, running their dog, or walking with their kid on the other side of that ridgeline, on the opposite shore, 90 degrees to your right or left, etc....

    There are a few caveats involved in being able to safely spray an A-15 in a 90 degree arc of possible impacts and not be concerned about unintended consequences. If he didn't meet 100% of those criteria, and maybe more I'm not thinking about, then I'd have to agree that it was irresponsible.

    he basically turned many many square miles into a live fire zone, that's a lot of land to keep track of that you can't see, unless its private and you know exactly who is on it and where they are.

    There wasn't a lot of info about the location of that video, but what I saw wasn't inspiring from a safety point of view. My $0.02 fwiw
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2013
  14. TennJed

    TennJed Member

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    Owning that much land isn't unheard of, I know a few people that could do exactly what was done in that video and put no one in danger (other than a trespasser)

    I am assuming it is private, around me there are not any public place to shoot at with bodies of water like that.
     
  15. 19-3Ben

    19-3Ben Member

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    You can ALWAYS hear every ricochet? Or are you assuming that because you always hear the ricochets that you hear, that those are the only ricochets?

    If so, that's a mighty bold assumption.
     
  16. gamestalker

    gamestalker member

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    I've always been taught to never shoot a projectile at water, it's in the rules if I recall. Shooting at water, is similar to shooting at a solid surface, such as concrete. About the only safe exception would be with a shotgun shooting shot.

    GS
     
  17. Potatohead

    Potatohead Member

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    Lawdy mercy! To be so united, we sure do argue about everything under the sun! It makes good reading though!
     
  18. Potatohead

    Potatohead Member

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    that was my first thought
     
  19. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

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    Like skipping a rock, a lot depends upon the angle of impact with the water. At some shallow angle all a bullet can just about do is skip.
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2013
  20. Beentown

    Beentown Member

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    We have our own land and lake. We shoot at targets hauled across the lake by a r/c boat. Very fun and responsible. We also take old tires and put a cardboard insert in them. An old BMX start rack holds the tires at the top of a large hill. At the mid point of the hill we have a release chain for them. We try and see who can get the most shots in the insert while the tire is rolling downhill.

    We do our best to make sure no one is trespassing on our posted land first (ride the trails around the property).
     
  21. cassandrasdaddy

    cassandrasdaddy Member

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    Richochets can be peculiar. Know a Guy who shot at a coyote in his yard. Would've bet there was no way to richochet. But in the morning there was a hole in back glass of truck and a funny look on my face. Learned something. Glad only thing hurt was my pride.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I997 using Tapatalk 2
     
  22. BullfrogKen

    BullfrogKen Moderator Emeritus

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    Some people really do own that much land.

    Enlightening video. And don't shoot at water. I don't even know why we're arguing the point it's OK to do it.
     
  23. Potatohead

    Potatohead Member

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    Amen Bullfrog
     
  24. wally

    wally Member

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    He is shooting at a very shallow angle which indeed is a bad idea -- you can skip 'em off flat dirt like that too! I believe the 90 degree traces are the bullets coming apart on impact -- more like fireworks than gunfire.

    We shoot into water all the time but its at a 20-30 degree downward angle towards the base of an earthen dam which is our backstop. the targets are set floating a few feet from the waters edge, any skips just hit the earthen dam which is our backstop anyways.
     
  25. bhk

    bhk Member

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    Years ago I read an article measuring .22 velocities just before the bullet hit the water at a shallow angle and just after they left the waters surface. They hit the water going 1100 fps and left the water averaging 1050 fps!

    .22s are among the worst when it comes to ricochets off almost everything. One could assume that just about every .22 bullet hitting the water at a shallow angle bounces off. To assume otherwise is just plain foolish and dangerous. You have to shoot at a fairly steep angle into the water to reduce the chance of ricochets.

    As far as hearing bullets ricochet, I think the reason we often here ricochets is the the bullet deforms when it hits many hard objects, making 'wind' noise due to its new irregular shape and resulting tumbling. I doubt .22 bullets change shape much when they hit water at a shallow angle and may make little or no typical 'ricochet sound.'

    I have played around a lot over the years shooting at objects on the water with steep backstops (banks, hills, etc.) on the other side for protection. I don't ever recall hearing the typical ricochet sound, but could always hear the bullet impacting the steep ground on the other side of the water. BE CAREFUL!!!
     
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