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Publication numberUS2631454 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMar 17, 1953
Filing dateJun 30, 1950
Priority dateJun 30, 1950
Publication numberUS 2631454 A, US 2631454A, US-A-2631454, US2631454 A, US2631454A
InventorsBerger M Shepard, Robert P Sullivan
Original AssigneeBerger M Shepard, Robert P Sullivan
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Water gun butt and apparatus
US 2631454 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)


March 17, 1953 B. M. sHEPARD r-:TAL


R MAQ@ Patented Mar. 17, 1953 UNITED STATES FFICE.

WATER GUN BUTT AND APPARATUS Berger M. Shepard, Silver Spring, Md., and Robert P. Sullivan, Chattanooga, Tenn.

(Granted under Title 35, U. S. de (1952),

sec. 266) 4 Claims.

This invention relates generally to bullet traps and more particularly to a new and improved apparatus for stopping projectiles for ballistic study.

The testing of new firearms or the acceptance test of ammunition requires considerable shooting and in such case projectiles are not, as a general rule, directed at a particular target but fired into a body of either water or sand, as the case may be, for subsequent recoveries therefrom for the purpose of either examination or for salvage as scrap metal.

The recovery of projectiles for ballistic study has been extensively practiced for many years and, whereas, sand butts or solid Water butts of the conventional type have been more commonly employed for stopping projectiles fired for general test purposes, butts of cotton waste or kapok are more universally used for stopping projectiles to be recovered intact for ballistic examination. The soft yielding resistance of lightly packed cotton so gradually reduces the speed of a projectile in flight that relatively little damage is done thereto during the stopping operation in contrast to that received by a projectile in striking butts of sand or in some less degree in striking solid masses of water as in the case of conventional water butts.

Although cotton or kapok butts of the type indicated have been found generally satisfactory for single shot iiring, the difficulty and time required in preparing by rearranging the iibrous filling of such butts between shots makes them highly impracticable for testing either firearms or ammunition where considerable shooting is required.

The gun butt of the present invention possesses all the advantages and none of the disadvantages of the foregoing apparatus by providing for an arrangement wherein a plurality of thin water sheets are directed across the path or" the pro jectile to be stopped, and as the sheets are progressively penetrated by the projectile in flight the speed thereof is proportionally reduced sumcently to decelerate to a stop the projectile within a selected trajectory while at no instant applying thereto a suillcient shock force to deform er alter the physical characteristics of the projectile from the manner in which it left the barrel of the gun from which it was fired.

It is an object of the present invention to provide an apparatus for reducing to a stop a projectile in flight after a predetermined travel thereof without deformation of the projectile during the stopping operation.

A further object is to provide a new and improved water butt wherein the butt is comprised of a plurality of predetermined spaced sheets of water.

A still further object is to provide a gun butt wherein water is directed in sheets across the path of a projectile to be stopped.

A still further object is to provide a gun butt wherein the flow of a fluid system is separated into spaced fluid sheets as it is passed before a projectile to be stopped.

Other objects and many of the attendant advantages of this invention will be readily appreciated as the same becomes better understood by reference to the following detailed description when considered in connection with the accompanying drawings wherein:

Fig. l is a side view partly in section of the gun butt of the present invention;

Fig. 2 is a plan View in elevation of the gun butt with the cover of the tank removed;

Fig. 3 is a sectional View taken along the sectional line 3--3 of Fig. 2; and

Fig. 4 is a fragmentary View in elevation of an arrangement for blocking on' a selected number of the slots of the tube.

Referring now to the drawings and more par,- ticularly to Fig. l thereof the gun butt of the present invention is generally designated 5 and is shown to include a rectangular tank assern bly generally designated adapted, as by an extending flange portion 'l thereof, to be secured by bolts 8 to the upper surface of a table or platform 9 upon which the tank is supported.

The tank is comprised of a relatively large base portion lil, `Fig. 3, adapted for retaining therein a suitable quantity of liquid 'Il such, foi` example, as Water and which may be admitted to the tank in any suitable manner as through the narrowed open top portion I4 thereof shown closed as by a removable cover plate I2. This enlarged base portion l0 of the tank will hereinafter be referred to as the reservoir and from which the fluid required for operating the device is supplied.

The narrowed upper portion iii of the tank,

3, is formed by the elongated side wall sections !3 thereof extending downwardly below the point of securement therewith of the wall sec tions 24 of the lower or large portion l0 of the tank with the wall sections I3 being inwardly flanged at their lower ends I2 for retaining therebetween an elongated strainer or basket l5 constructed of any suitable foraminous material such, for example, as wire mesh, perforated metal or the like, the purpose of which will become more clearly apparent as the description pro ceeds.

Centrally arranged within the upper portion I4 of the tank is an elongated dispensing tube I6 adapted, by means of end plate portions Il thereof, Fig. 2, Ito be secured to the side wall sections I3 of the tank by welding thereto at l.

The tube I6 is provided along its under surface with a plurality of transverse slots I9 preferably milled therein and selectively spaced, as illustrated, so as to form liquid passing through these slots into narrow sheets 2G that are directed downwardly across a chamber 2l formed ben tween the tube and the basket It and i respectively.

In order that the necessary volume of liquid may be supplied from the reservoir it to the disn pensing tube i6 to accommodate the liquid discharge from the slots iii, a high capacity pumping system is provided and arranged for connecting through conduits 22 and Z3 .the reservoir with the tube i5 by way of a motor and pui-np asser-- bly generally designated 25 secured as by bolts 2li to -a platform 2'? forming the lower brace of the table 9. An electric switch 29 secured conventionally to the table llange 3d controls the energizing of the motor 3i by supplying current thereto through the electrical conduit 32.

The starting of the pump motor 3l by closure of the switch 29 causes the necessary volume o water to be drawn from the reservoir ii! and re turned thereto by way of the transverse slots le in the dispensing tube i6 thereby to provide7 durH ing the operation of the device, a continuous spray in the form of the thin liquid sheets it across the chamber El and through which a projectile directed from a gun under test is forced to penetrate.

Arranged on and secured as by screws Fig.

2, to a forwardly extending portion of the table is a gun rack generally designated 36 and in cluding an angular bracket 3l of which the vertical leg portion 38 thereof is notched at 33, Fig. 2, for receiving therein the barrel of the gun le to be red. Movable vertically upon the leg 3S of the bracket and equipped for being secured thereto, as by clamp screw 4i in selected positions of vertical adjustment, is a butt rack d2 equipped with a horizontal adjustable member it whereby with proper adjustment of this rack and member 42 and l5 respectively, the barrel te of the gun may be brought into accurate alignment with openings 44 and l5 provided in the forward sections of the tank and arranged for admitting to the chamber 2| the projectile le of the gun when fired.

Secured as by welding at 59 to the forward seci tion cl3 of the tank is a rectangular guard housing of which the side 69 thereof adjacent the tank is preferably formed from armor plate whereby a projectile missing the opening 45 is delected rather than possibly puncturing the thinner wall section 43 of the tank to which the housn ing is secured. The purpose of the housing 4l is to prevent possible ricochets from the surface of the plate 55 from injuring the operator and further to catch such spray as may spatter through the opening 45 and return this liquid again to the tank through an opening l5 provided therefor in the lower portion of the housing and shown to advantage in Fig. 1.

A back stop assembly generally designated 5G and including a removable rectangular block 5l or any suitable material such, for example, as

wood provides means whereby certain tests may be conducted to determine the penetrating power of a projectile at selected speeds controllable by the number of sheets 2li the projectile is required to penetrate before striking the surface of the block.

Secured as by welding to .the side walls of the tank and adapted to retain in position in the tank the block 5i is a plate 55 having therein an opening 5d suitable for admitting the projectile 45 to the face or the block if, for certain reasons, the projectile is not stopped in the chamber 2i. The plate 53 is spaced from the tank wall to which it is welded a distance suilcient to slide* ably receive block 5i therebetween. The back plate 5l of the tank is preferably formed of armor plate sufficiently thick to stop a projectile should a selection of too few water sheets and blocks fail to do so.

The blocking off of certain groups of the slots 2 of the tube may be accomplished in any suitable manner as, for example, vthe method disclosed in Fig. l wherein a two part tubular section 55, preferably having a gasket liner, not shown,

f" is shown secured as by bolts 52 about the tubo it in such a manner as to prevent fluid escaping from the slots i9 covered thereby. It will be understood that a selected number of the slots may be covered in this manner by providing tubular sections 55 of the required length for the purpose intended.

Referring now briefly to the operation of the device thus far described, the switch 2Q is first thrown to energize the motor 3i which, by operating the pump 2d, draws the water Il from the lower portion l5 of the tank and by way of conduit 2i. to discharge this'liquid through conduit 23 into the dispensing tube i6 to be disbursed therefrom through the elongated slots IS of the tube. The flow of the water from the tube i5 in this manner, produces across the chamber 2i, a multiplicity of thin water sheets 2B that are so arranged as to be penetrated in progressive order by a projectile 4S red through openings M and l5 in the forward sections of the tank and moving longitudinally through the chamber 2l. The eifect on the projectile by engagement therewith of these sheets is to gradually reduce the velocity thereof to a stop after having penetrated a selected number of .these sheets corresponding in total thickness to less than half the solid water penetration required to stop a similarly moving projectile. Projectiles stopped in this manner remain substantially undamaged even though they may be of lead and initially traveling at high velocity.

The spent projectiles drop to the surface of the screen i5 from which they may be readily recovered by unfastening the plates Se by rotation of the latch elements 53 therefor and swinging inwardly the plates secured as by hinges 51 to the inner surface of the tank wall i 3.

Gbviously many modications and variations of the present invention are possible in the light of the above teachings. It is therefore to be understood that vithin the scope of the appended claims, the invention may be practiced otherwise than as specically described.

The invention described herein may be manufactured and used by or for the Government of the United States for governmental purposes without payment of any royalties thereon or therefor.

What is claimed as new and desired to be secured by Letters Patent of the United States is:

1. A gun butt of the character disclosed for decelerating a bullet to be stopped including, in combination, a fluid supply, a dispersing chamber for receiving therein fluid from said supply, and means including a plurality of slotted portions in said dispersing chamber for discharging said fluid from the chamber as a plurality of spray sheets arranged in mutually parallel and spaced relationship across the path of the projectile to be stopped.

2. A gun butt of the character disclosed for decelerating a projectile Within the trajectory thereof including, in combination, a uid supply tank, a uid reservoir, a fluid conduit system including apump for supplying fluid from said reservoir under a predetermined pressure thereon to said supply tank, and a plurality of elongated discharge slots arranged transversely to the line of projectiles night provided in the base of said supply tank for discharging the uid therefrom in a plurality of spaced sheets across the path of the projectile to be stopped.

3. A gun butt of the character disclosed adapted to stop a projectile in flight including, in combination, a uid system having a first tank for Vretaining a quantity of uid therein and a discharge tank in fluid communication with said first tank for receiving fluid therefrom, a plurality of fluid discharge ports arranged in said discharge tank in the form of selectively spaced elongated slots through which fluid discharge therefrom is formed into spaced fluid sheets, and means for causing said projectile to be directed in a manner to intersect said sheets in progressive order during the trajectory thereof.

4. A gun butt as in claim 3 further characterized by the provision of means for closing a selected number of said slots to decrease the number of said uid sheets to be intersected by the projectile.


REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the file of this patent:

UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 197,398 ONeil Nov. 20, 1877 2,518,446 Benson et al. Aug. 15, 1950

Patent Citations
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US197398 *Oct 9, 1877Nov 20, 1877 Improvement in targets for testing penetration of shot
US2518446 *Oct 29, 1948Aug 15, 1950Albin N BensonProcess of and method for catching machine gun bullets
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U.S. Classification73/167, 273/410
International ClassificationF41J13/00
Cooperative ClassificationF41J13/00
European ClassificationF41J13/00