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Remembered Today:

Strike rate for bullets


PhilB
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I recently read that in the US Civil War the number of bullets which actually struck an enemy was estimated to be about 1.5% of all those fired. This was thought to be an improvement on hit rates in previous conflicts, thought to be around 0.1% - 0.2%, mainly due to the use of rifled muskets. I haven`t seen any similar estimates for WW1, but I suspect the rate may be surprisingly low. I`ve not been able to find a figure for the number of rounds of rifle and machine gun ammunition sent to the theatres of war. Can anyone make a guesstimate of hit rate? Phil B

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From www.

WW2 25,000 per kill

Vietnam 200,000 per kill

WW2 Sniper 1.3 per kill.

Sounds alot to me ?

Roland.

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When the war finished there were :-

343,037,061 rounds of rifle and pistol ammunition in F&F unused. (from Great War Statistics).

The number hit could be estimated by multiplying the total number of casualties by the proportion thought to be bullet casualties, which I`m sure I`ve seen estimated.

I find those figures for WW2, Vietnam etc staggeringly high, but maybe a product of the introduction of automatic weapons on a large scale. Phil B

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I find those figures for WW2, Vietnam etc staggeringly high, but maybe a product of the introduction of automatic weapons on a large scale.  Phil B

I remember reading at the time that American troops landing by helicopter in Jungle clearings were firing on average two magazines of M16 ammunition whether or not the landing was opposed. This was in an American source which I believe to be true. So, not so surprising.

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I remember reading at the time that American troops landing by helicopter in Jungle clearings were firing on average two magazines of M16 ammunition whether or not the landing was opposed. This was in an American source which I believe to be true. So, not so surprising.

The fire rate of the helicopter gunships was fearsome. Thousands of rounds a minute. The kill rate must have been extremely low, otherwise there would have been no Vietnamese left alive.

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The fire rate of the helicopter gunships was fearsome.

...and that was nothing compared to the converted Dakotas nicknamed "Puff the Magic Dragon" armed with several GE miniguns (modern Gatling guns) each gun pouring fire down at 6000+rpm!

Dave.

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Just watched a History Channel prog this evening about assault wepons, specifically M16 which put the figure at 1 to 1.5 MILLION rounds fired by US Forces to kill or wound a single VC / NVA.

Even given the excellent standard of marksmanship of the 1914 BEF the German casualties at Mons were reckoned to be c. 7000 dead & wounded. How many rounds fired? I have not seen figures on ammunition expenditure.

My own limited experience of action has taught me that you put a hell of a lot of rounds down the range before "target screams when hit".

Chris C

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