Quote of the day—Ry Jones

What’s the BC for a snowflake?

Ry Jones
January 1, 2011
[“BC” stands for Ballistic Coefficient. This is a measure of how much air resistance the a bullet has when it travels through the air.

We were on our way to the Boomershoot site and discussing the various tests we wanted to do. I said that someday I wanted to test explosives as a snow drift removal tool. Ry didn’t think it would work very well because the snow wouldn’t go very far. I wasn’t convinced. Above was his response.

Below was my response:




10 thoughts on “Quote of the day—Ry Jones

  1. TXGunGeek,

    Actually, no. That is the whole point of the BC. With that single number you can compute the actual velocity loss across a wide range of initial velocities.


    Click on the picture and you can see the clumps of grass in the bottom of the crater. That will help with scale. Also the two metal rods are 5/8″ diameter and about 9 inches apart.

  2. Ballistic coefficient only depends on velocity if the standard you are trying to apply is incorrect for the projectile shape you are using. For VLD bullets, for example, if you try to use the G1 math for those bullets, to actually be correct, the G1 coefficients will not be constant. move to the correct standard for the bullet shape and they are constant.

    That being said, i think we need far more extensive testing to develop the ballistic curves for snow.

  3. Using explosives for snow removal is unlikely to work well. You would need a couple feet of snow to make it worth the bother; the snow would have to be rather densely packed to ensure that it gets thrown away rather than just “up.” Also, Tannerite is unlikely to be a good choice because it is likely to require a booster to detonate reliably. You would probably want a fairly dense explosive with a relatively high velocity, and some water resistance. (Another reason why an Ammonium Nitrate mixture is probably a bad choice.) But I figure you would set it up like a ditching operation (might want to run a couple test shots to see how far the shock-wave propagates, and if you could detonate the rest of your charges using the propagation from the previous charges). Problem of using explosive snow removal is that you are likely to damage what you are trying to get the snow off of.

  4. It’s a good way to break up a big icy snow plow pile if you can’t get a loader that will move it. Charge has to be augured in, and should not be done near people, roads or valued structures- including pavement you desire to keep intact. Tannerite or other amonals work fine, but you’re going to want to initiate them with caps rather than shooting at the charges.

    Ditching techniques require moist ground and high nitroglycerin content explosives in my experience. 40% straight dynamite was the classsic ditching dynamite-

  5. Don’t ski resorts use explosives to trigger avalanches in avalanche-prone areas? I think they use dynamite though… Explosives are a good snow removal tool.

  6. Avalanches are different from typical snow removal: avalanches are a danger when there’s a large build-up of snow on a sloped surface. They can happen with or without explosives. When an explosive is used to trigger an avalanche, it’s merely an attempt to cause something that was likely to happen anyway, so that it could be done when there’s no one around, to minimize the risk of loss of human life.

    That’s a far cry from removing snow from your driveway!

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