How does a bullet on a revolver get accelerated?

How does the explosive in the round move the bullet?
Is it just a quick bang and the shockwave gives the bullet a quick "kick", letting its momentum carry it down the barrel?
or do the expanding gases continue to push it down the barrel?

If it is the latter, doesn't there need to be a (reasonably) airtight seal between the chamber and barrel to stop the gases just escaping out the sides?

CameronSS6 years ago
Not really, yes, and yes. A shockwave is simply a wave of higher pressure that travels through matter, it doesn't really move the bullet. Some gas does escape out the side in a revolver, which means some loss of energy, but not too much. Mythbusters tested that to see if it could take off a finger with rather nasty results, as I recall. Somewhere in season 7.