Guns and Gear

Slow Mo Guys – Bullets Vs Steel at 800k Frames Per Second

Slow Mo Guys have been making some great firearm-related content with their high-speed cameras. Their latest video was inspired by an old video from 2009 of some really detailed footage of bullets smashing into steel filmed at 1 million frames per second. They try their hand at filming bullets vs steel and film it up to 800,000 frames per second.

Slow Mo Guys @ TFB:

9mm Bullets vs Steel

As mentioned earlier, The Slow Mo Guys’ latest video Bullets vs Steel was inspired by the video below.

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

They think Werner Mehl used an old Shimadzu high-speed camera.

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

The Slow Mo Guys are using a Phantom 7510 which is capable of filming over 1 million frames a second.

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

Dan, of the Slow Mo Guys, starts off easy by shooting an aluminum baking sheet with 9mm FMJ.

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

They did not point this out but you can see light generated from the heat when the bullet touches the aluminum baking sheet.

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

The bullet created a ripple in the aluminum sheet.

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

Interestingly, the bullet punched a bit of aluminum and took it along for a ride.

After the aluminum baking sheet, they stepped for Bullets vs Steel with actual steel. One thing they did not realize was that they were using mild steel. It holds up to 9mm just fine though.

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

You can see light escaping in this one frame between the gaps of the hollow point.

Bullets vs steel

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

Here they switched to black and white to increase the sensitivity and raised the frame rate to 800,000 FPS.

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

They shot some tracer 9mm but I do not think they were far enough away for the tracer element to ignite.

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

You can see the phosphorus embedded in the back of the metal jacket.

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

.30-06 Bullets Vs Steel

Dan stepped it up with a .30-06.

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

As expected it punched right through.

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

Just like the 9mm a brief moment of fire is created as the bullet first touches the steel.

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

I found the bubble created at the back of the steel plate interesting.

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

The bullet ends up punching a hole and pushing a piece of metal out. At first, they thought the slug of metal was the bullet but when they filmed it from behind, you can see the actual bullet spinning from the rifling separate from the larger piece of metal.

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

Interestingly the copper jacket gets peeled off and bounces back toward the shooter.

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

Next, they found an actual steel target on the range and attempted to shoot it with the .30-06. What was really cool was due to the time and position of the sun, it casted a shadow and created a Schlieren effect. You can see the shadow of the shockwave from the bullet. You can see it on the target clearly. There is a gentle curve ahead of the bullet and shockwaves coming off the back of the bullet.

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

The bullet creates fire again just as it starts to touch the steel plate.

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

Here is what happens to the bullet when it smashes into the harder steel. It gets obliterated.

Screenshot by Slow Mo Guys

I love watching bullets and firearms in slow motion. I would like to see the Slow Mo Guys revisit the tracer rounds and properly film them flying and burning in slow motion. I also would have liked to have seen the bullets hitting the steel much closer like the Werner Mehl videos.

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