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Bulletproof Hood

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The cops rush into the warehouse to apprehend the perp, but gunfire erupts out of nowhere. The smoke clears to reveal the hero lying face down in a pool of blood. We assume he’s dead – but wait! The next scene shows him grimacing while pulling slugs out of his bulletproof vest. No damage done but a couple of cracked ribs and some nasty bruising. Good thing he didn’t get shot in the head!

Bulletproof hood will protect you from gunshots to the head (except for the eyes, nose, mouth and ears, of course). I imagine it might be rather heavy to wear. And it probably won’t do much for your peripheral vision. And I suppose you’re much more likely to be shot in the chest as it’s a bigger target than the head.

But there it is.

snarfyguy, Jan 16 2002

HMS Hood's final battle. http://www.hmshood..../bmhood/BMHood.html
apropos of nothing! [DrBob, Jan 17 2002, last modified Oct 21 2004]

Future Trooper http://web.qx.net/w.../MilSF/futtroop.htm
A bullet proof helmet may stop a bullet but if it hits hard enough and breaks the trooper's neck the point is irrelevant. [thumbwax, Jan 20 2002, last modified Oct 21 2004]

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       Hoods wouldn't prevent someone from shoving a knife straight into his brain, now would it?
Tracer Bullet, Jan 16 2002
  

       I never said it was knifeproof, just bulletproof.
snarfyguy, Jan 16 2002
  

       Rather vague description. What's it made of? Is it a hard shell? If so, then it's been baked for years in the form of a soldier's combat helmet. Is it made from a soft cloth, like Kevlar? Then it's ineffective, as a bullet would likely fracture the skull and cause quite a bit of subdural bleeding.
Guncrazy, Jan 16 2002
  

       I think it must be nerf.
bristolz, Jan 16 2002
  

       I was thinking of a hood that covers your entire head (and perhaps throat as well), made of the stuff they make bulletproof vests out of. Not like a ski mask, which you'd pull on, but rather something that zips up.
snarfyguy, Jan 16 2002
  

       Okay.
snarfyguy, Jan 16 2002
  

       Why do I suspect you've actually tried this?
snarfyguy, Jan 16 2002
  

       As others have noted, bullet resistant attire can spread the transfer of momentum over a wide area, and in some cases may absorb some energy, but many firearm projectiles have enough momentum that just about no matter how it's applied it's going to hurt.   

       This is something that people who haven't actually handled firearms often won't appreciate, but firing many types of guns can actually be quite painful if the shooter hasn't learned to effectively absorb the recoil from the weapon. I once fired a coworker's lightweight 12 gauge shotgun once without shouldering it well and had a bruise for almost a week.   

       The recoil force on a gun is applied as the bullet travels 4 to 24 inches, is effectively dampened by 1 to 10 pounds of gun, and is the case of autoloaders is further dampened by the cycling action. The force is also applied in a deliberately-controlled manner and can be anticipated by the shooter. None of these factors will apply to any reasonable type of bullet-resistant attire.
supercat, Jan 16 2002
  

       Hmmm. How about making the hood out of reactive armor?
hehehehe
phoenix, Jan 16 2002
  

       The TV show "24", in a recent episode, showed fairly well what UnaBubba is talking about. The heroine who got shot was unconscious for quite a while after being show in the vest, and was obviously very bruised and in pain when she awoke. It actually STILL underplayed things--many people shot with vests are still injured to the extent of needing hospitalization. A "bulletproof hood" might stop a .22 caliber bullet... but not much else without at least a serious concussion.
spaceman_spiff, Jan 16 2002
  

       Anyone know how much energy a rifle bullet has at, say, 100 feet? Some common caliber (.308?). How would it be expressed, in foot-pounds? Also, does the way a bullet is jacketed, or designed to mushroom, affect how much energy is actually delivered if all other factors are equal?
bristolz, Jan 16 2002
  

       Yeah, well, that says it all. Not much sport.
bristolz, Jan 16 2002
  

       So it needs to be quite a thick hood then? Perhaps supported by scaffolding?
DrBob, Jan 16 2002
  

       bristolz: The goal of a hunting rifle is to be able to drop the target animal with one shot. Things don't always work as planned (an deer which moves as the hunter is pulling the trigger may get hit in the gut rather than the heart) necessitating a follow-on shot (it is considered exceptionally poor sportsmanship to lose a mortally-wounded animal).   

       I don't want to turn Halfbakery into a debating ground on the virtues of hunting, but if somone is going to shoot at, e.g., deer, they should use a weapon that can render a quick, relatively painless, kill. It should be noted, btw, that an AR-15 rifle (the standard U.S. infantry rifle) uses a round which is considered barely adequate for deer; deer rifles generally fire more powerful rounds.
supercat, Jan 17 2002
  

       As I recall, UB, HMS Hood proved to be rather ineffective at stopping projectiles.
DrBob, Jan 17 2002
  

       No, it was actually pretty good at stopping projectiles...it was when someone set up it the bomb that it had trouble.
StarChaser, Jan 17 2002
  

       Could you re-phrase that? <grin>

I've added a link from the HMS Hood website (which is rather splendid. I shall definitely be giving it a bit more attention in the next few weeks).
DrBob, Jan 17 2002
  

       [supercat]: Upon reflection, I agree with you. I believe that if one has made the choice to hunt then they owe it to the prey to use the most humane, and final, means. As for the the AR-15, is it a poor choice for hunting because it fails to deliver enough energy to the target or is it because the bullets are not soft-pointed like the hunting rounds I have seen?
bristolz, Jan 18 2002
  

       bristolz: You are correct in noting that military FMJ loads are completely unsuitable for hunting as they are not as effective at yielding quick humane kills as soft-tip bullets. Even when used with soft-tip bullets, however, the .223 doesn't have as much kinetic energy as something like a .30-30 or .30-06.   

       It's interesting to note, btw, that with the advent of fully automatic battle rifles, there has been a shift in the military to smaller cartridges. It used to be that a soldier could carry without difficulty as much ammo as he could possibly shoot; the limitting factor was the speed of loading cartridges into his rifle. As it became possible to fire more rounds/minute, the dynamics shifted to the point where a soldier could in fact be limitted by the amount of ammo he was carrying. Under such circumstances, 200 really big powerful cartridges may not be as useful as 400 less powerful ones.   

       The .30-06 was developed around 1906, and the .30-30 was developed in the 1800's, and yet those are among the most powerful former-military cartridges in common hunting use today (the .45-70 goes back even further, and it's more powerful than either of the .30's). It's interesting how few people realize how much less powerful today's military cartridges are than those of decades past.
supercat, Jan 18 2002
  

       Yes, yes, yes, but what about the bulletproof head, I mean hood? Why, apart from the obvious, is it so bad?
snarfyguy, Jan 18 2002
  

       Do a search on Canadian Troy Hurtibese (spl.), who invented a bear-proof suit so he could do up-close and personal bear 'research'. Stopping a bullet might be more half-baked than stopping a grizzly bear.   

       What if you grew your hair long, dipped it in epoxy + hardener, and quickly wrapped it around your head, letting it harden into a swirly shell. Then apply pieces of hard sheet metal to the outer layer. Then wear a Kevlar hood? And a couple sticks to prop your head upright.
entremanure, Jan 19 2002
  

       As a side note on energy transfer - I shoot a Kimber .45 cal M1911 style handgun. We have a combat-shooting course and use 1/2" solid steel plate targets. We do NOT shoot FMJ rounds because they destroy the targets. Even a S&W .40 cal FMJ round heavily bends and dents the steel. So even if your hood were 1/2" steel plating, a handgun round (much less a rifle) is going to kill you.   

       Helmets are designed to protect you against riccochets, shrapnel, and the like - not really against a direct shot.
Orion, Jan 19 2002
  

       [Orion]: Sounds like your range should invest in better steel for your targets. I've also practiced at a range that uses steel plates, and nobody I met seemed averse to using fully jacketed rounds, or told me not to.   

       By the way, nice choice on the Kimber. Of all the firearms in my collection, that's the one I most like to carry.
Guncrazy, Jan 19 2002
  

       UnaBubba: Actually, disabling an enemy combatant isn't really 'superior' to killing him, but it's good enough. And being able to carry twice as many rounds in the same amount of weight more than makes up for the fact that a round may not be fatal.   

       GunCrazy: The steel backstop of a range will generally be mounted at an angle, so that rather than stopping bullets it deflects them at the ground. My impression is that steel TARGETS are often mounted vertically, so that they are hit by bullets traveling perpendicular to their surface. For a variety of reasons such rounds are far more damaging.
supercat, Jan 20 2002
  

       Disabling an enemy is better than killing him, as it takes two people out of the fight. The one that was hit and the one that carries him back to the medic.   

       If they DON'T carry him back to the medic, he lays there and screams, and it demoralizes the enemy; effective either way.
StarChaser, Jan 20 2002
  

       I don't think anyone can scream loud enough to be heard over the sound of dozens of battle rifles, and I don't think the wounded are going to get much attention until the firefight is over.   

       Not saying that disabling enemy soldiers isn't as useful as killing them, but the real motivating factor behind using less powerful weapons is the savings on ammunition weight. Any other benefits are just gravy.
supercat, Jan 21 2002
  

       First, a soft cover directly over your head to distribute the impact evenly. Then, a VERY THICK lead lining, with enough inertia to do the trick (you see a bullet impact shoving backwards very heavy guys, so say 200 pounds) and an outher shell made of high impact steel some 1" thick. Voilá!. And you can bolt it to the ground because you will not be able to move it. Or put tracks on it and call it a tank. Any way I look at it I don't like to be fired at (even in my head which is solid bone, no grey matter at all).
finflazo, Apr 22 2004
  
      
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