imfdb.org  

Go Back   imfdb.org > The Forum > Just Guns

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 11-03-2009, 04:25 AM
mr_Goodbomb mr_Goodbomb is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 64
Default Firing blanks from a real gun

I intend to shoot a feature film soon, and I have recently been looking into purchasing guns for props. I was going to use airsoft guns and make all of the muzzle flashes digital, but I recently made the change to one gun-heavy segment on black-and-white super 8 film, so any digital alterations with be quite obvious. I also know that airsoft have very little resale value, as do blank firing guns, while both are initially expensive. I also wouldn't mind having the real firearms around for home protection after the production is over. So, I was considering real firearms and blanks (no live rounds on set, of course).

When using an unblocked barrel in a handgun, how dangerous are blanks, I know they have a bit of projectile and still shoot a pretty heavy bit of gas within the first foot or so. I've been around a .44 shooting blanks, and you could still feel the expulsion of gas several feet away, blank round or not. With smaller calibers, .22 to 32., how safe is it to place to camera in front of the barrel, say 4 feet away or so? I know, I know, "never point it at something you don't intend to kill," but as I mentioned, we will have absolutely no live rounds on set. I won't even shoot the weapons with live rounds before using them on set as to alleviate all possible issues.

So, how safe are they? Mainly for the camera, but also in the case of placing the camera over the shooter's shoulder and showing them shoot another character several feet away?
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 11-03-2009, 03:16 PM
Alcatrazz Alcatrazz is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Vermont
Posts: 224
Default

I would like a bit of background on the scene, so as to see if you couldn't use camera tricks and sound to get the effect. Is this an interior or an exterior scene?
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 11-03-2009, 04:28 PM
mr_Goodbomb mr_Goodbomb is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 64
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alcatrazz View Post
I would like a bit of background on the scene, so as to see if you couldn't use camera tricks and sound to get the effect. Is this an interior or an exterior scene?
Well, this is a general question about the entire film. Three guns (two handguns and a rifle, the two handguns are real, the rifle is a blank gun), shot a total of... 20 times, all together, some interiors (and yes, we have permission), some exteriors (all private property). Now, I can use camera angles and cutting away for some of them, but if I have the option of firing rounds that will produce an on-set sound and flash, and blanks are intended to be safe, then why not use it?
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 11-04-2009, 02:08 PM
Nyles Nyles is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 917
Default

We;re trained to aim off within 10 meters, and that's using a BFA that plugs the muzzle.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 11-04-2009, 06:22 PM
mr_Goodbomb mr_Goodbomb is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 64
Default

I'm not sure what that means in this context.

I've seen them used in real guns in cowboy action settings and on film sets, and sometimes at pretty close ranges, and it was fine. But I don't want to risk anything, so I'm asking.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 11-05-2009, 12:20 AM
Jcordell Jcordell is offline
Formerly "Checkman"
IMFDB Admin
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Idaho
Posts: 946
Default

Well all I can tell you is there was once an actor by the name of John Eric Hexum. In 1984 he had a promising career and was starring on a television series called Cover-Up. On 10/18/1984 shooting had been delayed and he was bored and frustrated. When informed of yet another delay he took a S&W Model 29 and put it against his head in a form of mock suicide. He should have used his finger. He touched off the blank in the cylinder chamber and the blast from the blank shattered the side of his skull. He died shortly afterwards in the hospital.

Now I'm not a movie gun guy, but I do have some first hand experience with the power of blanks as well. Many years ago, when I was a young and dumb soldier, I and my fellow soldiers used to take off the blank adapters on our M-16's. We would then put a cleaning rod down the barrel and fire off the blank. The rifle wouldn't cycle, but we didn't care.What it did do was launch that cleaning rod out of the barrel like a spear. I actually got the rods to stick into tree trunks. I shudder to think what it did to the barrel's rifling as well.

Blanks are nothing to mess with.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 11-05-2009, 01:08 AM
MoviePropMaster2008's Avatar
MoviePropMaster2008 MoviePropMaster2008 is offline
IMFDB Admin
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: California
Posts: 1,178
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by mr_Goodbomb View Post
I'm not sure what that means in this context.

I've seen them used in real guns in cowboy action settings and on film sets, and sometimes at pretty close ranges, and it was fine. But I don't want to risk anything, so I'm asking.
What Nyles was saying that most training has a standard safety distance of ten feet. In reenactments and public displays we usually state 15 feet. For one thing, you NEVER shoot in any direction that can throw crap at someone's eyes closer than fifteen feet. Blanks still hurt. We tend NOT to aim directly at anyone. Usually it's a camera trick and most of the time the gun is fired at a target 'off camera' or if at a person, usually at an angle where the blast is NOT directly pointing at the person.

I've blown holes in shirts and set them on fire with .45 Long Colt blanks so they are dangerous at extreme close range. the biggest danger is to people's eyes at any distance between one foot and thirty feet, so be careful and try not to aim at anyone's head if at all possible. During filming if we have no choice but to do a direct head shot, then you use a dummy blank firing gun with a BLOCKED BARREL (like they did in Goodfellas & Casino when they fired really close to people's heads). These are the theatrical blocked barrel revolvers that blow all of the low charged 'blast' (more like a cap) towards the sides. Nowadays, most modern movies use CGI for any gunfire that is dangerously close to human beings.

Believe me, 99.99% of the time you are never anywhere CLOSE to the person 'being shot'. try to keep it that way. Most films have angles of actors firing 'off screen' .


Usually the cameraman is protected, sometimes with a furny pad or a heavy jacket, always with hearing protection and eye protection (if not blocked by the camera). Anyone not essential to the shot, steps way back away from the action. The Camera is usually protected by something, sometimes a clear plastic shield, etc.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 11-05-2009, 06:23 AM
mr_Goodbomb mr_Goodbomb is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 64
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Checkman View Post
Well all I can tell you is there was once an actor by the name of John Eric Hexum. In 1984 he had a promising career and was starring on a television series called Cover-Up. On 10/18/1984 shooting had been delayed and he was bored and frustrated. When informed of yet another delay he took a S&W Model 29 and put it against his head in a form of mock suicide. He should have used his finger. He touched off the blank in the cylinder chamber and the blast from the blank shattered the side of his skull. He died shortly afterwards in the hospital.
Yes, I've heard that story. I don't believe I'm "messing with them," but trying to use them for their given purpose.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 11-07-2009, 02:43 PM
MT2008's Avatar
MT2008 MT2008 is offline
IMFDB & Forum Admin
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 2,512
Default

I think you really need to consult with some of the armorers on here before you try this. As others have pointed out, there have been quite a few disasters with blanked firearms in Hollywood.

Also, where are you filming this movie? Remember that blanks are LOUD.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 11-07-2009, 07:09 PM
mr_Goodbomb mr_Goodbomb is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 64
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by MT2008 View Post
I think you really need to consult with some of the armorers on here before you try this. As others have pointed out, there have been quite a few disasters with blanked firearms in Hollywood.

Also, where are you filming this movie? Remember that blanks are LOUD.
Private property.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 08:13 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.0
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.