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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. Cee Zee

    Cee Zee member

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    The video shows what happens when you shoot at the worst possible angle to the water. It's just like skipping rocks. The bullets will fly in every direction when you shoot from that angle.

    There are a very few, very limited times you can shoot at water. Shooting straight down into water from a high river bank with a high bank on the other side of the river too (I'm talking a small river maybe 30 yards wide or less) and you know there the area is all remote country too is pretty safe. I wouldn't use a high powered rifle to do it though. Shooting at a steep angle to a pond or whatever with a hill behind it and miles of wilderness behind the hill is also fairly safe. Again small caliber rounds (as in .22's) only. Even in those situations I don't like to do it but if you live in a place like the one I grew up in you'll know there are large tracts of land in places with no one there except on very rare occasions. It would take a shot with odds of 100 billion to 1 (or more) to actually hit someone in a place like that and a round shot at a steep angle into water isn't going to come out with enough force to clear the hill anyway.

    I don't want to encourage anyone to shoot into water though. It's a bad idea especially if you don't know every inch of the land behind the water and know that there won't be people in the area at all.

    Just so you know bullets ricochet off of dirt too if you shoot at the same angle that they were using in the video. That's why they always have the signs telling you to shoot all the way to the backstop at the gun ranges.
     
  2. kwguy

    kwguy Member

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    LOL, that was funny!
     
  3. 45_auto

    45_auto Member

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    You can see your bullets after they ricochet? Are you shooting a BB gun?
     
  4. cassandrasdaddy

    cassandrasdaddy Member

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    There's a pretty famous video of a Guy getting hit by his own ricochet.that's more than 90 degrees

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I997 using Tapatalk 2
     
  5. Sav .250

    Sav .250 Member

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    Common sense would indicate that.............. But not all have common sense!
     
  6. HOOfan_1

    HOOfan_1 Member

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    I was waiting for an episode of Swamp People to end for Top Shot to come on...and one of them was trying to shoot a floating alligator with a Mini-14.....my first thought was....you don't ever shoot at that type of angle into water....

    These guys didn't seem to have much common sense (or teeth for that matter), but they were showing the entire world something that should not be done.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2013
  7. we are not amused

    we are not amused Member

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    Somebody earlier commented that the tracer rounds were likely breaking up.

    I want to second that thought. The tracer material often separates from the round after impact. Shooting at wooden target after dark, I was amazed to see tracers going straight up after impact, and even "bouncing" back at me! In the daylight, I was able to dig every one of the metallic bullets out of the wood. The tracer material had gone every which way, but every bullet was where it ought to be.

    I also know of several people who own tracts of land with lakes as large as the one visible, all within a couple of hours driving time.

    I own a small pond, and often shoot at targets floated out on it. The geometry is quite different than shown in the video, (I am looking down on the target) and with a good backdrop behind it. It is quite fun to float a two liter plastic bottle out, and smother it with aimed rapid fire. Same with pop cans, if you hit one just right, you can send it flying 10 or more feet in the air.:D

    Since I run cows in the pasture, I have no interest in injuring one of them, bullet skips and ricochets are not rocket science. If you don't shoot at a low angle of impact over the water, you won't have bullets skipping over the water. Shallow angle of fire, (as shown in the video) and yes, they will skip!
     
  8. Potatohead

    Potatohead Member

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    This is absolutely ridiculous. Maybe im just missing something
     
  9. Potatohead

    Potatohead Member

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    Thats funny right there
     
  10. Potatohead

    Potatohead Member

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    Well i think we've determined that you can in fact, own property with water on it.
     
  11. chicharrones

    chicharrones needs more ammo

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    You learn that refraction messes with your aiming in only a few shots, then you aim a bit lower.

    I'm as guilty as others here that have shot fish in the water and I also shot some turtles just under the surface too. You keep your angle steep, you aim to compensate for refraction and you kill the critter if it is close to the surface.

    I haven't done any shooting like that since I was very young. I probably never will again.
     
  12. SharpsDressedMan

    SharpsDressedMan member

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    I have heard that shooting fish in a barrel (of water) is easy. Perhaps not.
     
  13. 119er

    119er Member

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    Our tracers did the same thing hitting dirt berms during night fire exercises. The tracer is contained in the base of the projectile. Once it impacts something the burning tracer usually seperates or dislodges from the base and flies of in whatever direction the bullet decides to fling it. We started several range fires this way!:uhoh:
     
  14. Shadow 7D

    Shadow 7D Member

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    When I was a kid, I was almost shot in the head by an idiot doing JUST THIS
    shooting salamanders on a small pond. And guess what, I wasn't close, I was up a hill about 200 feet back from the slope, at my buddies place.
     
  15. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    I don't think it is so much the bullet 'flinging' the trace element.
    The mostly burnt out trace element doesn't weigh enough to fly that far that fast!

    If you have ever stumbled around on the back 40 behind a machinegun range picking up bullets?

    You will find spent tracer bullets, spent ball ammo bullets, and spent AP bullets scattered far and wide in all directions behind the initial impact area.

    My take on it always was, the whole complete bullets are going to go in all directions when they ricochets off the ground contact the first time.

    One may hit soft dirt and continue in a straight line back up in the air.
    The next may hit a small rock on the right edge of the point and take off to left field, and the next one to right field.

    Least wise, that's where you could pick them up on the ground over a wide area downrange of the initial impact area.

    Where you found complete bullets down range looked to me exactly like what you saw the tracer bullets doing when you shot them at night.

    Hitting the ground once and flying off in all directions.
    Just like the shooting water video showed.

    rc
     
  16. Salmoneye

    Salmoneye Member

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    Vermont still has a 60 day 'Fish Shooting' season in the Spring...I have shot many fish, and have never 'hit' one...

    The concussion briefly stuns the fish, and then you hopefully net or gaff them quickly before they 'wake up'...

    The key is steep angle, and anything more than 2 feet down is a waste of ammo (including .45-70)...

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BY6FnzroUBE
     
  17. herkyguy

    herkyguy Member

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    i learned this lesson years ago watching .50 cal tracers bounce off waves and go vertical. never would have even thought it was happening if they hadn't been tracers.
     
  18. Officers'Wife

    Officers'Wife Member

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    Thank you Salmon, shooting fish is illegal here in Indiana so I must rely on what the poachers tell me. FWIW, he usually has his smokehouse full and has some harrowing tales of ricochets. Including one of shooting off an old iron bridge and the ball bouncing off the abutments and floor rails. I generally take him with a grain of salt as he is... well, let's just say he would never let a little thing like the truth get in the way of a good story.
     
  19. Carl N. Brown

    Carl N. Brown Member

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    Pre-WWII military advice was that 3 feet of water would stop strafing rounds from enemy fighter planes and advised infantry crossing streams or other open water to dive if a fighter was coming in on attack. Mythbusters tested it. .50 BMG would disintegrate in three feet of water like the bullet had hit a brick wall. Best penetration in water was the .58 cal civil war rifle (heavy slow bullet) and IIRC the 12ga slug. As I recall, they shot down into a water chamber at 90° and into a swimming pool at presumed strafing angles 30° to 45° without ricochets.
     
  20. Archaic

    Archaic Member

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    I am astonished at how many people defended this video as safe if it was private property.

    Just flat out wrong. Under ANY circumstances it was terribly irresponsible behavior. If you are uncertain of your backstop you DON'T SHOOT. That was not ambiguous when my grandfather was a kid and its not ambiguous now.

    So what if there are no people on that island (because when we were kids we NEVER went where we were not supposed to, right?). Was the shooter prepared to track down and humanely harvest the gut-shot doe that caught one of those ricochets? What about the fire started by one of those tracers in dry woods. You own that bullet and everything it does from the moment you pull the trigger - if something bad happens, its 100% on the shooter.

    Its OK to think it was a cool and instructive video, it was. But if I ever caught my kid haphazardly spraying tracers into a distant hillside, I would bust his ass so bad his unborn grandchildren would wince in pain at the mention of the word ricochet.
     
  21. Beentown

    Beentown Member

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    I will shoot where I want, on my land. I post the land and cruise it once before shooting. Our plots where I shoot are 263 acres, 12 acres (actual range with pond) and 170 acres on the other side.

    My kids surely know that you don't go on someone else's property without permission. All the neighboring kids know me and all they have to do to explore/fish is to ask. But they are bright, country folk also and know to ask first anyway.
     
  22. JPG19

    JPG19 Member

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    Yep. Kids could always be trespassing. For that reason, I don't actually fire any of my weapons. Range days consist of us packing up our gear, heading out to our favorite spot, aiming down range, and yelling "BANG!" as loudly as possible. It really is quite a hoot!
     
  23. TennJed

    TennJed Member

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    Not a bad idea these days. I can still find bang on the shelves
     
  24. TennJed

    TennJed Member

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    Do you hunt? If so do you lead the game in front of your backstop or do you have someone place a backstop behind it real quick before you shoot?
     
  25. herkyguy

    herkyguy Member

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    under ANY circumstances????


    Haven't you seen Red Dawn???

    WOLVERINES!!!!!
     
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