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steel ball bearing safety?

Post about things you have launched or thought about launching. Also post about various materials used for building cannons. No posts about explosive projectiles!
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steel ball bearing safety?

Unread postAuthor: JDP12 » Wed Apr 25, 2007 9:28 am

I saw a thread in here about steel ball bearings..I may purchase these..What are some good safety precautions however??

I did a search..but did not find anything good..Any help would be greatly appreciated...I don't want to die..Oh and by the way I would be shooting 5/8" balls
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Unread postAuthor: Fnord » Wed Apr 25, 2007 9:32 am

well, dont shoot them at something that will lead to a ricochet. other than that just be senseble and I dont see anything to be concerned about.
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Unread postAuthor: jackssmirkingrevenge » Wed Apr 25, 2007 9:33 am

Don't fire them at hard surfaces, ricochets are a [female doggy] :roll:
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Unread postAuthor: JDP12 » Wed Apr 25, 2007 9:35 am

soo a 2x4 would be safe then?? Of wood obviously

Is there any way to make a backstop to save them and reuse them..Or once they're used they're used??

I was thinking just a bunch of wood..But I don't even know if it would be practical- I can buy a pack of 100 anyway for $15
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Unread postAuthor: Fnord » Wed Apr 25, 2007 9:40 am

If you can save them, why not?
Make a thick wooden box with one side opened, and put your target in there. If you can put a sheet of metal on the back wall to help stop the projectiles. You should be able to recover most of your shots.
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Unread postAuthor: jackssmirkingrevenge » Wed Apr 25, 2007 9:45 am

It's highly unlikely that you'll be able to fire them with enough force to distort them and make them unusuable.

I'd recommend a box full of old newpapers/magazines/carpet as a backstop.
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Unread postAuthor: JDP12 » Wed Apr 25, 2007 10:56 am

K thanks for all the ideas guys..I appreciate it

Also.. the ball bearings on mcmaster.com...Has anyone had experience with them?? Since I will be using a 5/8" electrical conduit for my barrel..I want them to fit perfectly..And the website says that the diameter tolerance is give or take 0.005". Has anyone had experience with ball bearings from mcmaster? I don't want to go any smaller to ensure that they fit..As the next size is 9/16" and that will be a lot smaller compared to 5/8"

So if anyone has experience with those ball bearings please let me know..
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Unread postAuthor: jimmy101 » Thu Apr 26, 2007 11:13 am

I don't think you need to worry about the 0.005" tolerance of the BBs.

You need to worry about the tolerance of the internal diameter of the 5/8" conduit. I wouldn't think conduit is all that precise.

Is the conduit metal or plastic? Is the conduit welded? If it is welded, it'll have a slight ridge along the weld and the tube isn't perfectly round inside. Even if the tubing is plastic it won't be perfectly round inside. (Look down any old hunk of PVC and you can usually see waviness on the inside wall.)

What does the manufacturer say the actual ID is? 5/8" is the nominal ID, not unusual for the actual value to be 10% or more different than the nominal.

How much pressure will the conduit take? Conduit is not normally pressurized so there is no reason to expect it to handle much pressure.

-----------------

McMaster sells chrome steel and stainless steel BBs. The chrome steel ones are a lot cheaper than the stainless ones. For 7/16" BBs the chrome steel ones are about ten cents each, the stainless ones are about 40 cents each. (And, the chrome ones can be picked up with a magnet in case you ever want to use them in a <a href="http://home.earthlink.net/~jimsluka/Gauss_rifle.html">gauss rifle</a> .)
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Unread postAuthor: Hotwired » Thu Apr 26, 2007 11:20 am

I fire lead slugs from my cannon.

Actually the same one, repeatedly after remelting it.

I've had it riccochet back past me off a limestone slab so I now fire at a target with a 'tunnel' made of a thick fibre doormat butted up against it.

Any riccochets off the target smack into the fibre matting, usually denting it but they don't pass through and stop dead and either stick in the matting or fall down.
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Unread postAuthor: JDP12 » Thu Apr 26, 2007 12:00 pm

No the conduit isn't welded or anything..It's metal...just a straight 3 foot section
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Unread postAuthor: pyrogeek » Thu Apr 26, 2007 11:46 pm

My city doesn't allow you to shoot a BB gun within city limits, so I made a range in my basement. The wall is cinder block, so I had to make a backstop. So, after some experimentation, this is what I found.

Cloth seems to work the best for stopping BBs and pellets. I had a box that was approximately 3 inches thick, and I filled it with old shirts and other miscellaneous cloth. This stopped every BB I fired at it. The previous backstop I had was a 1ft thick box that I filled with newspaper, magazines and cardboard. Some BBs would actually go through to the very back of the box, requiring a piece of 1/4in plywood to stop them from going through the back side. The BBs also tore the paper to shreds, and the BBs would become lodged in magazines and cardboard, which made this much messier than the cloth backstop. If you aren't recovering BBs, it would be fine. But, I was going through about 1000 a day for a while when I had no job.

Obviously, a BB and a 5/8 ball bearing are going to be slighly different. But, they are both pretty similar, so I figure that this may help you create a backstop suitable for your needs.
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Unread postAuthor: spudzinger » Thu May 03, 2007 6:11 pm

Yeah, inarchery old phone books work great. I'd suggest possibly making a wooden box then covering it with layers of fabric, getting progressively thicker and a hinged bottom so you can shoot into it then just get the bb's eithr out of the cloth when you re-string(so to speak) or from the hinged bottom.
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