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Old 05-05-2019, 08:30 AM
 
Location: NW Nevada
14,154 posts, read 11,623,339 times
Reputation: 13243

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Quote:
Originally Posted by ironpony View Post
I always notice this in westerns, the police or law officers, will always wait for the villains to draw their pistols first, before drawing theirs. Like in this example from Tombstone:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_c...&v=eIpVWTZYWr8

But you see it in other Western movies as well.

But in modern times, the police always have their guns drawn, and aimed and ready to go, when making arrests. Like when they send in SWAT teams to make arrests, guns out and ready to go.

I am wondering, did they actually historically wait for the villains to draw first before drawing, when making arrests in the old west times, or is that just a movie style cliche, and not historically accurate?

These Western movies never get it right. Closest I've seen is in Unforgiven. Deadwood had a few moments as well. The "fast draw" thing is a myth. Or legend whatever term you like. One detail I've noticed that irks me is the movies always depict everyone wearing gunbelts and holsters.


It just wasn't so. Most carried in their waistbands or pockets. If they carried at all. Cowhands weren't riding with gunbelts carrying two guns with ivory handles. Their pistol, if they had one, was in their saddlebags. They may have had a saddle rifle, but carrying pistols on their bodies was VERY rare. Gun belts were expensive items.


Gunfights, when they did actually happen, were not formal affairs as the movies depict. They were wild frays of inaccurate fire with a lot of hurled insults. A few isolated incidents have gone down in history and Hollywood uses them s examples of how it really was. The OK corral was one such. Inflated and embellished beyond belief.
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Old 05-05-2019, 11:34 AM
 
Location: San Diego CA
4,847 posts, read 3,374,646 times
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In the final analysis Westerns have mostly been entertainment perpetuating the mythical Wild West. This is what most movie goers want and what has driven box office receipts. I suppose the real old West was mostly boring, uninspiring and intermixed with occasional violence and mayhem.
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Old 05-05-2019, 04:50 PM
 
Location: Cape Cod/Green Valley AZ
870 posts, read 2,090,187 times
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Sorry to burst this bubble, but the slugs coming out of 19th century revolvers did not immediately incapacitate people. The wound might have be, ultimately, lethal, but a person, even with multiple slugs in them (save for a round entering the central nervous system), still had a couple of minutes of fully functioning available to them.

Thus, the one super fast gunslinger would have died when confronted by multiple opponents, no matter how many, or how quickly, he put his bullets into them.

From my book on handgun training, the title of which rules on this site forbid me to mention:

Chapter Heading: Bullet Potential (Terminal Ballistics)

For some reason discussions on the subject of handgun projectile effectiveness frequently devolves into acrimonious debate. What should be reasoned discourse regarding the known facts revolving around the consequences of the combat use of the handgun too often seems to result in personal attacks being generated on the part of those participating in the discussion. I have no rational explanation for this, I am simply sharing an observation.

Therefore, I’d like to offer the following in regard my ability to know in advance the consequences of a gunfight, based solely on the cartridge/bullet combination used by the combatants. After forty years in law enforcement, including a stint as a New York City homicide detective, as well as a supervisory member of the NYPD Firearms and Tactics Section, I wish to point out that:

I have not a clue how a combat confrontation might reasonably be expected to end, based on the rounds used by either party. The only variables that I am aware of, and which a shooter has some control over, and which might otherwise influence the outcome of such an encounter, would be:
  • The location where the projectile entered the person’s body (determined, to a limited degree, by training and, to a far greater degree, by the circumstances and situation in which the shooter finds him or herself in)
  • The depth of the projectile’s penetration into the body
  • The width of the permanent cavity produced by that projectile

    The variables over which there is no control over are:

  • The mental state of those in the fight
  • The chemicals in their bloodstream during the encounter

Rich

41 years police officer; 20 NYPD, including sgt. and lt. in the NYPD Firearms & Tactics Unit, 20 as chief of police in a town on Cape Cod
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Old 05-05-2019, 05:35 PM
 
Location: Caverns measureless to man...
7,245 posts, read 4,667,706 times
Reputation: 16360
I know you! We were in the same thread on a handgun message board a few years ago, talking about hydrostatic shock. "Practical Handgun Training" was the book, right? I've read parts of it; you are genuinely an expert in this subject.
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Old 05-05-2019, 07:27 PM
 
Location: Cape Cod/Green Valley AZ
870 posts, read 2,090,187 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. In-Between View Post
I know you! We were in the same thread on a handgun message board a few years ago, talking about hydrostatic shock. "Practical Handgun Training" was the book, right? I've read parts of it; you are genuinely an expert in this subject.
Ya got me!

Rich
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Old 05-05-2019, 07:35 PM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
40,814 posts, read 18,549,595 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BeaSeo View Post
I always wondered when the Indians were circling around the wagons, why the settlers did not just shoot the Indians' horses out from under them and then take their time shooting the Indians on foot?
The entire image of Indians riding in a circle around a defended wagon train is preposterous, strictly a Hollywood invention. Why would you ride around presenting yourself as a target to someone crouching behind a barrier? You are exposed and trying to shoot from a bouncing platform while the defender has cover and a steady platform for taking aim.

Indians typically did not make attacks on wagon trains as a whole. They crept in at night, perhaps killed an unalert sentry, and stole whatever horses and cattle they could. Or they waited until one or two wagons got separated from the rest of the train, and they attacked them.
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Old 05-06-2019, 11:16 AM
 
12,255 posts, read 18,390,529 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RichCapeCod View Post
Sorry to burst this bubble, but the slugs coming out of 19th century revolvers did not immediately incapacitate people. The wound might have be, ultimately, lethal, but a person, even with multiple slugs in them (save for a round entering the central nervous system), still had a couple of minutes of fully functioning available to them....
Interesting questions comparing guns from then and now. Then, just like now, getting shot once does not always incapacitate bad guys. The old west weapons used black powder which has less energy than modern smokeless powder - more energy meaning more lethal and more stopping power, but the caliber was typically larger. You mentioned revolvers but one should mention the civil war era rifles (still somewhat in use in the era of the old west) fired a .54 minie ball, a chunk of metal that acted like a hollow point in mushrooming and either shattering bones or leaving a huge open gap as it exited, as opposed to modern jacketed rounds. I imagine getting hit by one of these you would immediately go down.

Old westerns usually seem show a bloodless death, with either an immediate death (for the random "redshirts"), or if a major character they are able to give some speech before they pass one. All obviously unrealistic. Modern movies use blood squibs which has blood exploding forward from the wound like some pimple popping, which isn't entirely accurate either.
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Old 05-06-2019, 12:20 PM
 
Location: NW Nevada
14,154 posts, read 11,623,339 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dd714 View Post
Interesting questions comparing guns from then and now. Then, just like now, getting shot once does not always incapacitate bad guys. The old west weapons used black powder which has less energy than modern smokeless powder - more energy meaning more lethal and more stopping power, but the caliber was typically larger. You mentioned revolvers but one should mention the civil war era rifles (still somewhat in use in the era of the old west) fired a .54 minie ball, a chunk of metal that acted like a hollow point in mushrooming and either shattering bones or leaving a huge open gap as it exited, as opposed to modern jacketed rounds. I imagine getting hit by one of these you would immediately go down.

Old westerns usually seem show a bloodless death, with either an immediate death (for the random "redshirts"), or if a major character they are able to give some speech before they pass one. All obviously unrealistic. Modern movies use blood squibs which has blood exploding forward from the wound like some pimple popping, which isn't entirely accurate either.

Django Unchained was really bad with embellishing the capabilities of 19th century firearms. The old Bill Boydes and Roy Rogers types...well...you know. LOL. A friend and I took our replica pistols out one day and put a 36 Navy and 44 Army 1851 and 1860 types on steel plates one day. The 36 wouldn't even tip them over.


The 1851 36 were Hickocks guns. It also irritates me know end when a movie supposedly set pre or during the Civil War shows guys packing 1873 SAAs and Winchesters. Please.
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Old 05-06-2019, 03:24 PM
 
Location: San Diego CA
4,847 posts, read 3,374,646 times
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I guess that even into the early 20th century pistol rounds were not necessarily powerful enough to bring down an opponent. I recall that US troops in the Philippine insurrection of the early 1900ís had trouble with their government issue 38ís. One reason the 45 Model 1911 was introduced.
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Old 05-06-2019, 03:52 PM
 
12,255 posts, read 18,390,529 times
Reputation: 19079
Quote:
Originally Posted by msgsing View Post
I guess that even into the early 20th century pistol rounds were not necessarily powerful enough to bring down an opponent. I recall that US troops in the Philippine insurrection of the early 1900ís had trouble with their government issue 38ís. One reason the 45 Model 1911 was introduced.
Somewhat off topic but our military was severely outgunned in the Spanish-American war - we used Krag rifles which had this strange side loading feature. We were fighting the Spanish with the superior German Mauser design and loaded by stripper clips. This includes fighting in the Philippines. The spanish were able to load faster and the 7MM Mauser bullet had more energy then the Krags .30 caliber and thus both more lethal and had better range. Eventually we replaces the Krags (I have to get one to add to my collection) with the 1903 springfield, and excellent rifle but it was essentially a rip-off of the Mauser.
Mauser sued us, the US ended paying royalties every year until, legend has it, WW1 where war broke out and then we told the Hun to pound sand. I think in reality there was some sort of settlement but I like the WW1 story.
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