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Could ice bulllets (made w/ a mercury-based compound) be made to be shot by compressed air with a tight seal ? Answered



Best Answer 8 years ago

Ice is a weak crystal. IF you could overcome the other problems like melt and seal, when you accelerate it  to any useful velocity the ice shatters/crumbles along the crystalline matrix and you are just shooting water and fine snow. It doesnt even make a decent sabot.

MERCURY has too many criminal consequences to consider shooting from anything in any way ...ever. It is a major legal no-no in all civilized countries and if ONE person even suggests you are doing it they come. The envirionmental people put everything they suspect has come in contact with mercury into big barrels and bill you thousands to haul it off, then the police types fine you heavily, then the gun police (BATF in US) get you criminally for illegal projectiles. Any mercury in any projectile is a crime, domestic AND international.  All in all, a bad idea.

Very Informative!

My reasons for suggesting mercury are:
1: I have read about some apps(but not necessarily on humans) for it.
2: it freezes at a fairly high temp, and and does not melt until it gets up to about 51 degrees F. I believe it is mixed with another substance (?) when it is put into thermometers (now they usually use alchohol or nitrogen), etc., to get to low/high temps.

By the way, that's some great  Phraseology ('Crystalline Matrix'). I'll need to remember that.
PPS- do you happen to be in college by any chance, or just senior high? Thanx

Sorry I was away for a while. I am over 50, and go back to college to learn a new skill about every 5 years. Presently I repair x-ray machines, CAT scanners, and laboratory analysis equipment (hospital-ly stuff) for a living. BTW mercury melts at something stupid like 40 or 60 degrees BELOW zero, i.e. it melts at dry ice temperatures...Thats why they used to use it, pure,  in thermometers, it's liquid over a very large temp range.

Mercury thaws at a very low temp. not 51 deg. F.

How did we get onto Mythbusters? I've got to see that episode.

BTW, If you overcame all other obstacles, could you actually get a tight enough seal to fire the bullet?

It's been proven that you can't shoot ice bullets.  You can't get from the mold to the gun fast enough to actually shoot an ice bullet.  Refer to Mythbusters.

I love mythbusters, but sometimes they don't quite explore all the options. How about having a (very) small mold IN the gun. nanotech can do it!

Yes, but I kept shouting at the screen that they didn't try Pykrete.


But that would leave sawdust in the wound.  The myth was that the bullet would kill a person and leave nothing behind to show that there was a bullet.

True, but they frequently deviate from the myth after it's busted in order to get an entertaining result. They even used Pykrete in the Alaska special, so it's not like they've never heard of it. Oh well, it's only an hour-long show.

Since the deviation almost always takes the form of  "blowing stuff up for no real reason whatsoever", I would have to concur.

With compressed air, you can "shoot" pretty much anything that'll fit in or over the barrel of your air gun. The difficulty comes in when you figure in such factors as how fast/far you want to shoot said thing, what you want it to do when it gets where it's going, how accurate it needs to be, etc.