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NAT’L – OPINION – Gun myths, lies and misconceptions

There are a lot of gun myths out there. They were passed on from fool to fool, usually at gun shows or at campfires. Then came the Internet, which brought the fools together — and the myths propagated at a rampant rate. Most of these myths are easily debunked with physics. You can’t beat physics. Argue them all you please, but physics will always win. One of the first myths is that bullets rise when they leave the muzzle of a gun. This is not physically possible. A bullet leaving the muzzle of the barrel does two things and two things only: It slows down, and it falls to earth. Friction and gravity are at play here, and you can’t beat physics. If a rifle is laid perfectly level and fired, that bullet will start to slow down and drop as soon as it leaves the muzzle. The reason it seems like bullets travel in an arc is because of optics (scopes, red dots, etc) mounted above the barrel. You have to accommodate for the height that scope is mounted above the barrel. This is called barrel or sight offset. You are actually aiming your gun upward just a tiny bit so the bullet can hit where your optic is pointed. Another myth is that you should never leave rounds in a magazine for long periods of time because it will weaken your magazine springs. Or, my favorite, that you should load your magazines one round short to lengthen the life of your spring. This one is a popular myth that still makes the rounds of the Internet forums today. Some will argue this until the end of time. Repeat after me: You can’t beat physics. Springs only wear when they move. A spring held in tension at the same point will not wear. It’s not moving. The people that religiously empty their magazines every night are actually the ones causing undue wear to their springs. How many of you have pulled an antique car out of a barn that has been sitting for decades? Were the shocks or springs collapsed? No. Unless they were bad before the car was stored, those springs will be just the same as they were stored. Springs doing springy things is what wears them out, whether they’re in a car’s suspension or a handgun mag. Hollywood has caused many gun myths, but my personal favorite is that shooting someone will launch them backward. Heck, hitting them with both barrels of a side-by-side shotgun will send them flying through the saloon doors! Bullets hitting a person won’t and can’t throw them backwards. You would need to hit them with more force than they weigh. That will require more force then a tiny bullet, measured in grains, could ever generate when fired from a firearm.  [full article]

 

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