Video: Shooting Pellets Using Hilti-type Nail Gun “Blanks”

   08.28.15

Video: Shooting Pellets Using Hilti-type Nail Gun “Blanks”

The first thing I wondered when I saw the youtube teaser for this video was, “Does it live up to its name? Is it truly stupid?”

Well, let’s find out.

Here’s the premise: Take a 22 rimfire gun. Cram a .22-caliber Crosman lead airgun pellet down the bore, stopping just in front of the chamber. Then load a 22-caliber “blank” shell, as used in Hilti guns and other powder-actuated tools for driving steel fasteners into concrete and other hard materials.

The first shot punched a nice clean round hole through a metal plate, which was described as “about 1/8″ stainless steel.” Impressive! So, they tried a CCI Mini-Mag 22 LR round, which utterly failed to penetrate the plate.

It’s another case of speed vs. weight, and in this case, super-speed wins at penetration.

Next, they fired at a phone book about 1.5 inches thick. The pellet didn’t penetrate fully, but at least it didn’t keyhole; it left a nice clean round hole. The 22 round didn’t fully penetrate, either.

Next, they attacked a steel locker door. The pellet punched a clean round hole without denting the steel. The Mini-Mag punched through and left a fairly deep dent in its wake.

Next, they shot a couple of so-called watermelons. I’m pretty sure they’re citron melons. The explosive effect of the pellet caused massive hydraulic shock damage, without penetrating the melon, while the 22 penetrated fully and with much less trauma drama.

Near the end, the video’s narrator made a wild guess at the velocity of the pellets and came up with 2500+ fps. But then someone decided to put them to the test. This guy used a more efficient method of loading the pellets: he crammed them in from the chamber end, using an allen wrench as a gauge.

Unlike the original video, this one is a tad long-winded and lacks, shall we say, “verve.” But it does provide data for those of us who like it. I’ll try to boil it down to the basics; the complete video is down below.

Fired from a break-open 22 rifle:

Brown rounds (power level 2): Average MV 1881 fps
Green rounds (power level 3): Average MV 2324 fps
Yellow rounds (power level 4): Average MV 2821 fps
The yellow shells gave him extraction troubles, so they may be a bit hotter than they ought to be.

Next, he fired some duplex rounds: two pellets shoved into the bore ahead of the “blank.” Long story short, some scary-looking stuff happened, and the duplex loads were declared unsafe.

He fired a group of five for accuracy at a range of 50 feet. The group wasn’t great, but he wasn’t firing from a super-steady rest, either.

Somewhere along there, I think I nodded off. Well, almost.

Pistol velocities:

Brown rounds (power level 2): Average MV 1047 fps
Green rounds (power level 3): Average MV 1514 fps
Yellow rounds (power level 4): Average MV 1864 fps

His ultimate conclusion: Bad idea. I concur.

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