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Q: Bullet to the chest ( No Answer,   27 Comments )
Subject: Bullet to the chest
Category: Science > Physics
Asked by: modati-ga
List Price: $20.00
Posted: 26 Jun 2006 11:24 PDT
Expires: 26 Jul 2006 11:24 PDT
Question ID: 741160
Hello, my name is Bilal Ghalib. I am planning on pulling a publicity
stunt for the grand opening of my silk screening company(
by shooting my self off of a bridge into water while wearing a shirt
with "Only Bullets?" on it. My question is this:
"Will I survive?"

It is a pressing question, that is for sure. I'll be looking to
purchase a bullet proof vest, of course, but will it stop a rifle?
Maybe there is no way I can survive a glock, so I was thinking maybe
some form of bird shot, with less focused blast could it be feasible?

Maybe 2 vests? 

What I would like to know is this:
How far away, and with what exact kind of gun and ammo could I take a
bullet or two to the chest and survive (with minimal pain)?

I am pretty physically fit, but if I need to work out I have a few
months to prepare.

By the way I'm not crazy, only extremely passionate.
(Also I wont hold you liable, but please give me as accurate
information as possible, I like being alive, also, I know the answer
is worth more than 20 bucks, but we're just starting this company.
Thanks for your understanding.)
There is no answer at this time.

Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: probonopublico-ga on 26 Jun 2006 11:34 PDT
Not a good idea!

Supposing the bullet (or some shot) hits you in the eye?

Don't do it!
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: pinkfreud-ga on 26 Jun 2006 11:36 PDT
An old friend of mine started a silk screening company several decades
ago. He was quite successful, and has now sold his business and
retired. His success was achieved without life-threatening stunts.
Please rethink this.
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: modati-ga on 26 Jun 2006 11:44 PDT
Perhaps it will help if I state that I am also completely rational and
if there is no safe method to do it I wont/will stage it.
This has a good list of various weapons and their stats.
some more.

some physics:
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: pinkfreud-ga on 26 Jun 2006 11:54 PDT
This may be of interest:

Bulletproof vests fail 58 percent of time
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: modati-ga on 26 Jun 2006 12:01 PDT
So if I wear two I'll be protected 84% of the time? 
; D
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: probonopublico-ga on 26 Jun 2006 12:06 PDT
There is a very good chance that both vests will fail at the same event.
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: frankcorrao-ga on 26 Jun 2006 12:18 PDT
i'm not sanctioning this as a sound idea, but that said, why only a
bullet-proof vest?  Why not wear a led shield under the shirt?  Cops
wear vests because they have to balance protection with mobility.  You
do not.  Of course,  you will probably sink once you hit the water,
but that's a different problem.
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: rracecarr-ga on 26 Jun 2006 13:01 PDT
I don't know much about guns or vests, but I do know some physics.  As
I picture it, you want to be blasted off the edge of a bridge into the
water.  It won't happen that way.  A fired bullet has a lot of kinetic
energy, but not much momentum.  So (even with a vest) it will hurt a
lot, but it won't throw you backward.  The impulse you get from the
bullet (the amount of "push") is exactly equal to the amount of
backward push felt by whoever fires the gun due to the gun's recoil. 
So any gun that doesn't tend to knock the shooter over backward will
not throw you off the edge very effectively.  Of course, you can
always wait to get shot and then let yourself fall over the edge, but
it won't look like anything is really pushing you off.

I already said I don't know about guns, but here's this for what it's
worth:  I think you'll get the most impulse from a shotgun.  A
12-guage has a pretty good kick, enough that if you're leaning back on
your heels at the edge of a bridge, getting shot would likely knock
you off.  You don't want to shoot from too close a range, or the
pellets will hit too close together, breaking ribs, and maybe tearing
through your vest or other protection.  If you're too far away, you
risk getting a peppered with pellets where you don't want to.  Make a
model out of wood or something, put a vest on it, and try shooting it
from different ranges with different kinds of shot.  Once you settle
on something, find a shooter you trust, and have them take 100
practice shots to make sure the vest won't fail, or you won't get a
pellet in the face.

Finally, stop saying you're not crazy.  You are.
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: pinkfreud-ga on 26 Jun 2006 13:11 PDT
Quite apart from the unnecessary risk, I don't see this as a very
useful promotional device. It may cause a brief flurry of attention,
but after a few months, is anybody going to say "Hey, let's go buy a
silk-screened shirt from that guy who was shot in the chest"?
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: markvmd-ga on 26 Jun 2006 13:22 PDT
I agree with Rracecarr's mental evaluation and add that when I am
declared Sovreign Ruler of All and Whatnot I will require folks as
flaky as you to be licensed prior to reproduction.

Having said that...

You need to hand load your cartridge's powder and make it very weak.
Then use a non-lethal projectile for the slug. Place a smoke squib or
exploding pack on your body to make it look like you are being blasted
by a "real" bullet. Finally, don't tell anyone in authority about it
or they WILL lock you up!

Hey, wouldn't this make a fair "CSI" episode? Trying to figure out who
put a full powder charge in David Bla... er, Bilal Ghalib's stunt
bullet? Maybe ex-wife number one? Spurned lover number four?
Disinherited son number three? My money is on the neighbor who is
taking orders from his hamster (um, let's call him "Ham").

Wasn't Peter O'Toole's "The Stuntman" a wonderful movie? If you
haven't seen it, you should. It gives you an idea of what could happen
if you start to think you're a stuntman (not the main point of the
movie, I know).

"How tall was King Kong?"
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: pinkfreud-ga on 26 Jun 2006 13:26 PDT
I don't know where you live, but I suspect that most municipalities
take a dim view of people shooting firearms while staging publicity
stunts on bridges. You may incur a hefty fine.
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: modati-ga on 26 Jun 2006 13:27 PDT
Well, this is to be shot as a viral video commercial as well for the
shirt in specific. I plan on sending off the shirts with real bullet
holes in it. It's message is that there is no stopping us, not even
bullets. Bullets that in todays world seem like the ideal way to kill
an idea, shatter a rebellion, or take one's life.

I'm aiming to use viral videos as a cheap form of promotion, and how
many people will pass around a video of me being shot in the chest
(even if i don't fall, i guess)? The kinds of people that watch these
things/pass them around are my target audience for shirts. Perhaps you
may not find this a very good marketing plan, but then again, you're
probably not my target audience. Also a good viral video will last a
season, at the very least this shirt I want to have out in the fall.

Passion is an ideal that is at the heart of this entire concept, I
feel there are far too many people living simply to get by. Enough of
that already, go shoot yourself off a bridge.

Thanks for all the advice rracecarr, and yeah, I guess I wont be shot
off the bridge, good logic behind that. And a lead plate along with a
vest does sound reasonable. But I'd still like some math, as crazy as
you think I am. I have my faith in numbers.
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: modati-ga on 26 Jun 2006 13:35 PDT
Flaky? Well, I'm just trying to be creative about my form of
marketing. Perhaps you don't agree that it'll work, but who knows? I
can't afford enough adwords to be competitive. And advertising on is outrageous!

I like your style though markvmd, do you want to help me write a radio
drama about the restructuring of heaven? God is now an equal
opportunity employer, and death is to be reassigned as a lowly
gardener, and the new reaper of souls is a woman.

That's my longer term project, I feel it's an innovative enough
concept: bringing back the radio story telling medium through pod
casting, to provide some strong interest. It'll also provide my web
page with some interesting content, and lastly, i think it'll be just
plain fun to do.

-BG who was never planning on creating babies in the first place
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: myoarin-ga on 26 Jun 2006 13:41 PDT
I agree that this would be an interesting publicity stunt, but
probably not the best way to advertise your store.  And even if it
works  - assuming this is going to happen in the States -  you may  -
WILL -  have problems with the police afterwards, and with your name,
maybe with Homeland Security.

There is always the chance that the stunt goes badly awry.  You might
want to read the comment to this question describing what it is like
to be shot.
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: pinkfreud-ga on 26 Jun 2006 14:01 PDT
>> Passion is an ideal that is at the heart of this entire concept, I
feel there are far too many people living simply to get by. Enough of
that already, go shoot yourself off a bridge.

In this litigious age, I urge you to be very careful about any
commercial endeavor which encourages people to shoot themselves. Even
if you are using this as some sort of metaphor, you may find yourself
with a whopper of a lawsuit on your hands if some kid takes it
literally and actually does shoot himself.
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: modati-ga on 26 Jun 2006 14:15 PDT
You know, come to think of it, the police already don't like me.
But I've seen things similar to this done prior, and I have months to
plan, I'm sure there is tons of paperwork/licencing to do maybe I'll
ask my friends who work for the event planning company out in ferndale
to be a first layer. When confronted in bureaucracy, become a like a
bureaucracy yourself.

I do realize that did sound like I was encouraging suicide, that was
not the case at all. It's a good thing my sister is a lawyer : \!

-BG who doesn't understand why a land promoting capitalizm will have
so much against it's own entrepreneurs. We make your land interesting!
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: redfoxjumps-ga on 26 Jun 2006 15:34 PDT
Pay someone 20 bucks to take the bullet for you.  Stick to your last.
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: cynthia-ga on 26 Jun 2006 16:07 PDT
Sure, I'll get in the fray...  I entered this:
"publicity stunt" "bulletproof vest"

The FIRST result:

..."The dead man was wearing a bulletproof vest..."

Novelist's Public Death Creates Chicago Mystery

My search is complete, question answered.
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: eiffel-ga on 27 Jun 2006 02:07 PDT
First: you could hire a stuntman who will perform the whole thing for
you with simulated gunshot. The audience needn't be any the wiser.

Second: you may wish to read about a theatrical gunshot that went
fatally wrong, and Brandon Lee (Burce Lee's son) died:
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: modati-ga on 27 Jun 2006 06:24 PDT
Cynthia, but he was also hanging from a noose? 

Eiffel, let us assume I did hire a stuntman, would I ever want him to
read up about Brandon Lee's death if he hasn't already. But thanks for
that link, I always knew someone died on the set of the Shadow but I
never knew it was Bruce Lee's son!
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: kemlo-ga on 27 Jun 2006 09:29 PDT
Military body armour often has a ceramic or metal plate inserted in among the Kevlar
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: cynthia-ga on 27 Jun 2006 17:55 PDT

I missed that!  I got all hung up (pardon the pun) on that one
sentence... "The dead man was wearing a bulletproof vest!"
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: xaviergisz-ga on 29 Jun 2006 01:44 PDT
I think a better viral advertising video would be the silk shirt
stopping a bullet (in super slow-motion). I vaguely recall that a
(hanging) silk sheet is so light and strong that it will move *with* a
bullet thus slowing it down (rather piercing through it, as with
heavier materials).
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: probonopublico-ga on 29 Jun 2006 04:29 PDT
Here's a great idea ...

After the gimmick goes badly wrong, get the Undertakers and all the
Mourners to wear promotional shirts with bullet holes in them.

The Mourners should also be asked to carry banners bearing a Skull and
Crossbones and the warning 'One Stupid Idea and this could be YOU'.

(You can provide for this in your Will.)
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: modati-ga on 29 Jun 2006 09:50 PDT
You know xaviergisz, that actually is a very attractive idea. If
that's true, that sounds much safer, and also very interesting... it
seems as though it could be a nice ending to a high paced plot. Also
this way I could do it out in the woods and avoid any permit
questions, avoid risking my life, and also save some money on armor.

probonopublico: It may be a stupid idea in your opinion. But this
question was proposed simply to understand the physics behind it and
to see if it was possible. I do have 2 other commercials planned which
don't involve near death encounters, this is me getting some research
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: egon_spangler-ga on 03 Jul 2006 12:32 PDT
A normal bulletproof vest won't stop a rifle bullet.

Don't go out and buy a bunch of blanks and think that's a good idea
either. Even with a vest knowing blanks are in the gun i wouldn't
stand in front of one.

Have you much experience with guns? I would get some of that before
you worry about excersize. No matter how fit you are if the vest fails
you die.

If you MUST use a real gun try to just repeat the events from JackAss.
Find some country police station that has the proper non-lethal
projectiles that will take you out somewhere and shoot you with one.
I'm sure it hurts a lot less if you have a vest on.

Good luck, Don't Die.
Subject: Re: Bullet to the chest
From: bigdavet-ga on 04 Jul 2006 19:19 PDT
if i was you i would think of some other publicity stunt. Althoug a
bulit proof vest stops the bullet passing into your body the force of
the bulit hitting the kevlar can cause broken ribs, ambominal
bruising, and internal bleeding. Besides who ever shot you would be
breaking the law. Althogh you asked him/her to do it it will be seen
as assault or it could be seen as attemped murder and if the worst
happened it would be premeditated murder. do a bungie jump, parachute
or something less deadly

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