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Throw Stones at Pirates

Equip ships with catapults to throw six inch rocks at pirates
  (+6, -4)
(+6, -4)
  [vote for,

I have been following the growing instances of piracy globally. One issue with security it seems, is that ships are supposed to report all guns upon entering foreign ports, this is of course time consuming, and can lead to other issues (guns being stolen and sold, etc) However, six inch rocks are not illegal anywhere. If ships were equipped with catapults, (steam or electrically powered,) then they could throw rocks at pirate vessels all they wanted...this could be one more item in the arsenal
senatorjam, Apr 13 2009

12.7mm limit. Yes, they're illegal. In at least one place. http://en.wikipedia.../Destructive_device
"Any weapon by whatever name known which will, or which may be readily converted to, expel a projectile by the action of an explosive or other propellant, the barrel or barrels of which have a bore of more than one-half inch in diameter" [AbsintheWithoutLeave, Apr 13 2009]


       And then the pirates could stand off and shoot you with rocket-propelled grenades.
nomocrow, Apr 13 2009

       Aw, come on.
nomocrow, Apr 13 2009

       Railguns and conductive objects to launch out of said railguns aren't illegal anywhere either.
Veho, Apr 13 2009

       I like it. Low velocity, cheap projectiles. The problem again is the need to man the weapon, and to do this one needs to know the pirates are coming and have someone willing to aim the weapon at them. If you can see and hit a pirate with your rockgun, he can see and hit you with his AK47.
bungston, Apr 13 2009

       //Railguns and conductive objects to launch out of said railguns aren't illegal anywhere either//
I guess, so long as the calibre is less than 12.7mm.
AbsintheWithoutLeave, Apr 13 2009

       I didn't know about the 12.7mm limit. [Absinthe], is that a new piece of legislation regarding railguns in particular, or is that some weird aerospace health and safety regulation that was crafted with something else entirely in mind but happens to apply to railguns as well?
Veho, Apr 13 2009

       [veho] linky
AbsintheWithoutLeave, Apr 13 2009

       this might be good if the pirates are armed with scissors.
jaksplat, Apr 13 2009

       [21Quest], if you are going for the [DrCurry] award, at least get your factoids right.
zeno, Apr 14 2009

       I've considered a few deterrents to repel boarders, such as one-inch thick cables hung to a few feet above water line, a wrecking ball, or big mousetraps; in the end, I think a general rule of engagement should be to fling a warning halibut across their bow then to pump over tons and tons of mackerels.
reensure, Apr 14 2009

       Detcard blows things up, yes? This might be useful if (1) it was not your boat (2) pirates invariably board with all pirates abreast, reaching rail at same time, or (3) pirates scare easy - for example, on seeing leading pirate lose hands and head to detcord, remaining pirates flee instead of continuing to board ship and finding detcord guy. If not, multiple detcords might be necessary to be triggered sequentially for each boarding pirate.   

       But this is probably why this little scheme is in an anno rather in its own digs.
bungston, Jun 21 2010

       That "12.7mm limit" thing has so many loopholes in it you could board it with a flock of chickens.   

       Take your catapult, fit it with a 10mm bore-sighting tube, and you're in. Nothing there says that the projectile has to travel *through* the barrel.   

       In fact, it doesn't even require having a barrel.   

       And, if you can get "the Secretary" to consider your device a "signalling" or "safety" device (either of which I could make a strong case for) then you can pack about whatever...   

       "Hey, Mr. Pirate Dude! Your safety requires that you stay far enough away that I can't hit you with THIS!"
lurch, Jun 21 2010

       [+] excellent: a weapon which would be useful *against* pirate ships, but useless to mount *on* a pirate ship (size, firing rate, recoil).
FlyingToaster, Jun 21 2010

       Scrap [21Q]'s detcord idea. If you're going to use explosives, at least use claymores.
Custardguts, Jun 22 2010

       // If you can see and hit a pirate with your rockgun, he can see and hit you with his AK47.//   

pertinax, Jun 22 2010

       Perhaps if you threw Keith Richards at the pirates....?
Twizz, Jun 22 2010


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