Discussion:
Molotov Cocktails
(too old to reply)
Howard Holey Hail
2010-11-01 22:51:43 UTC
Permalink
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies, and
somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make documentaries.

I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything from blow
up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused by brushing them
off with your hands or patting them down with your blazer.

How effective are they, really? If they're so great, why didn't armies
make catapults and shoot them by the gross back in 1942? Or maybe modify
them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs from his Shermans back in
1944? And if they're so ineffective, why are they so famous? Is the
straight dope that they worked well if you had the engineering expertise
of Soviet Russia teaching people how to make them, but they weren't much
good in the hands of a typical radicalized 1969 Anthro major?

--- news://freenews.netfront.net/ - complaints: ***@netfront.net ---
Les Albert
2010-11-01 23:02:42 UTC
Permalink
On Mon, 1 Nov 2010 22:51:43 +0000 (UTC), Howard Holey Hail
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies, and
somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything from blow
up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused by brushing them
off with your hands or patting them down with your blazer.
How effective are they, really? If they're so great, why didn't armies
make catapults and shoot them by the gross back in 1942? Or maybe modify
them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs from his Shermans back in
1944? And if they're so ineffective, why are they so famous? Is the
straight dope that they worked well if you had the engineering expertise
of Soviet Russia teaching people how to make them, but they weren't much
good in the hands of a typical radicalized 1969 Anthro major?
Molotov cocktails were mass-produced by the Finnish military, bundled
with matches to light them. They were also used in the Spanish Civil
War, sometimes propelled by a sling.

They are cheap, easy to make, and are primarily intended to set
targets on fire rather than instantly destroy them.

Les
Dover Beach
2010-11-01 23:07:15 UTC
Permalink
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies, and
somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make
documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything from
blow up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused by
brushing them off with your hands or patting them down with your
blazer.
How effective are they, really? If they're so great, why didn't
armies make catapults and shoot them by the gross back in 1942? Or
maybe modify them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs from his
Shermans back in 1944? And if they're so ineffective, why are they so
famous? Is the straight dope that they worked well if you had the
engineering expertise of Soviet Russia teaching people how to make
them, but they weren't much good in the hands of a typical radicalized
1969 Anthro major?
"The original design of the Molotov Cocktail was a mixture of ethanol,
tar and gasoline in a bottle. The bottle had a pyrophoric Bengal fire
stick attached on its side. Before the bottle was thrown, the Bengal
stick was lit, and when the bottle broke on impact, the mixture inside
ignited."

I don't know why a college student in 1969 couldn't have made that work.
--
Dover
Lee Ayrton
2010-11-04 22:49:30 UTC
Permalink
Post by Dover Beach
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies, and
somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make
documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything from
blow up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused by
brushing them off with your hands or patting them down with your
blazer.
I suspect that they worked best as anti-personnel and terror weapons.
Everyone (modulo certain Vietnamese Buddhist monks) fears being set
alight and burning to death.
Post by Dover Beach
Post by Howard Holey Hail
How effective are they, really? If they're so great, why didn't armies
make catapults and shoot them by the gross back in 1942? Or maybe
modify them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs from his Shermans
back in 1944? And if they're so ineffective, why are they so famous?
Is the straight dope that they worked well if you had the engineering
expertise of Soviet Russia teaching people how to make them, but they
weren't much good in the hands of a typical radicalized 1969 Anthro
major?
"The original design of the Molotov Cocktail was a mixture of ethanol,
tar and gasoline in a bottle. The bottle had a pyrophoric Bengal fire
stick attached on its side. Before the bottle was thrown, the Bengal
stick was lit, and when the bottle broke on impact, the mixture inside
ignited."
I don't know why a college student in 1969 couldn't have made that work.
I recall reading -- perhaps in "Steal This Book" -- that classic rag-
stuck-in-the-neck-of-a-fuel-filled-bottle Molotovs had a distressing
tendency to break in the thrower's hand, a result of the flame heating
and breaking the neck of the bottle.

The fix, as I recall, was a tampon taped to the side of the bottle and a
plug in the neck. The tampon was soaked with fuel and ignited, the
larger thermal mass of the body of the bottle made pre-flinging breakage
less likely, the neck of the bottle became a handy handle to improve
distance and accuracy.
Mark Steese
2010-11-05 03:33:46 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lee Ayrton
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies,
and somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make
documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything
from blow up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused
by brushing them off with your hands or patting them down with your
blazer.
I suspect that they worked best as anti-personnel and terror weapons.
Everyone (modulo certain Vietnamese Buddhist monks) fears being set
alight and burning to death.
I suspect that most people never even consider the possibility that they
might be set alight and burned to death, much less fear it. Indeed, the
willingness to make and wield Molotov cocktails pretty much depends on
*not* fearing being set alight and burning to death.
--
Usually annihilating a culture and romanticizing it are done separately,
but Bunnell neatly compresses two stages of historical change into one
conversation. -Rebecca Solnit
Tim
2010-11-05 07:17:35 UTC
Permalink
On Fri, 5 Nov 2010 03:33:46 +0000 (UTC), Mark Steese
Post by Mark Steese
Post by Lee Ayrton
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies,
and somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make
documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything
from blow up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused
by brushing them off with your hands or patting them down with your
blazer.
I suspect that they worked best as anti-personnel and terror weapons.
Everyone (modulo certain Vietnamese Buddhist monks) fears being set
alight and burning to death.
I suspect that most people never even consider the possibility that they
might be set alight and burned to death, much less fear it. Indeed, the
willingness to make and wield Molotov cocktails pretty much depends on
*not* fearing being set alight and burning to death.
Anyone lighting an incendiary device that does not consider the
possibility is not nearly aware enough to be doing it.
--
Tim
Mark Steese
2010-11-05 18:34:53 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
On Fri, 5 Nov 2010 03:33:46 +0000 (UTC), Mark Steese
Post by Mark Steese
Post by Lee Ayrton
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies,
and somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make
documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything
from blow up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused
by brushing them off with your hands or patting them down with
your blazer.
I suspect that they worked best as anti-personnel and terror
weapons. Everyone (modulo certain Vietnamese Buddhist monks) fears
being set alight and burning to death.
I suspect that most people never even consider the possibility that
they might be set alight and burned to death, much less fear it.
Indeed, the willingness to make and wield Molotov cocktails pretty
much depends on *not* fearing being set alight and burning to death.
Anyone lighting an incendiary device that does not consider the
possibility is not nearly aware enough to be doing it.
I said that those who make and wield Molotov cocktails don't *fear* the
possibility, not that they don't consider it. My belief that most people
don't consider the possibility includes a belief that most people will
never have the need or desire to improvise an incendiary device and use
it as a weapon.

OTOH, given the recklessness with which some people treat fireworks, I'd
say it's possible that some people who use improvised incendiary devices
don't consider the possibility of being hoist on their own petard; I'd
say it's also likely that many others don't care whether they do go up
in flames. If your circumstances have deteriorated to the point where
making and using Molotov cocktails seems like a reasonable option,
chances are you don't really have much left to lose.
--
The Alps are grand in their beauty, Mount Shasta is sublime in its
desolation. -William H. Brewer
Stan
2010-11-05 11:53:05 UTC
Permalink
Post by Mark Steese
I suspect that most people never even consider the possibility that they
might be set alight and burned to death, much less fear it. Indeed, the
willingness to make and wield Molotov cocktails pretty much depends on
*not* fearing being set alight and burning to death.
Most people running with a barrel of hot burning tar don't expect to be
set on fire, either.
<http://swns.com/tar-barrels-race-could-be-cancelled-over-insurance-costs-031519.html>

A sad day for sports fans.
--
I need a new signature.
Stan in NJ
Tim
2010-11-06 19:53:42 UTC
Permalink
Post by Stan
Post by Mark Steese
I suspect that most people never even consider the possibility that they
might be set alight and burned to death, much less fear it. Indeed, the
willingness to make and wield Molotov cocktails pretty much depends on
*not* fearing being set alight and burning to death.
Most people running with a barrel of hot burning tar don't expect to be
set on fire, either.
Well, what could possibly go wrong?
Post by Stan
<http://swns.com/tar-barrels-race-could-be-cancelled-over-insurance-costs-031519.html>
A sad day for sports fans.
Indeed.
--
Tim
Tom S
2010-11-06 04:05:11 UTC
Permalink
On Fri, 5 Nov 2010 03:33:46 +0000 (UTC), Mark Steese
Post by Mark Steese
Post by Lee Ayrton
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies,
and somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make
documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything
from blow up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused
by brushing them off with your hands or patting them down with your
blazer.
I suspect that they worked best as anti-personnel and terror weapons.
Everyone (modulo certain Vietnamese Buddhist monks) fears being set
alight and burning to death.
I suspect that most people never even consider the possibility that they
might be set alight and burned to death, much less fear it. Indeed, the
willingness to make and wield Molotov cocktails pretty much depends on
*not* fearing being set alight and burning to death.
I have to disagree with you a bit here. The willingness to make and
wield Molotov Cocktails demonstrates the wielder's desire to set afire
and burn their target. It says nothing about their own fear or lack
thereof.

Tom S.
Mark Steese
2010-11-06 04:38:32 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
On Fri, 5 Nov 2010 03:33:46 +0000 (UTC), Mark Steese
Post by Mark Steese
Post by Lee Ayrton
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies,
and somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make
documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything
from blow up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused
by brushing them off with your hands or patting them down with
your blazer.
I suspect that they worked best as anti-personnel and terror
weapons. Everyone (modulo certain Vietnamese Buddhist monks) fears
being set alight and burning to death.
I suspect that most people never even consider the possibility that
they might be set alight and burned to death, much less fear it.
Indeed, the willingness to make and wield Molotov cocktails pretty
much depends on *not* fearing being set alight and burning to death.
I have to disagree with you a bit here. The willingness to make and
wield Molotov Cocktails demonstrates the wielder's desire to set afire
and burn their target. It says nothing about their own fear or lack
thereof.
It seems to me that at the very least it says they've been able to
overcome any fears they may have.
--
There can be no doubt that the public--both in and out of the
courtroom--was as titillated by the mention of voodoo as they were by
the presence of Sharon's socks and undershirt. -Lynn Hudson
John Hatpin
2010-11-01 23:09:39 UTC
Permalink
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies, and
somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything from blow
up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused by brushing them
off with your hands or patting them down with your blazer.
How effective are they, really? If they're so great, why didn't armies
make catapults and shoot them by the gross back in 1942? Or maybe modify
them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs from his Shermans back in
1944? And if they're so ineffective, why are they so famous? Is the
straight dope that they worked well if you had the engineering expertise
of Soviet Russia teaching people how to make them, but they weren't much
good in the hands of a typical radicalized 1969 Anthro major?
First thought is, they must be extremely risky things for the people
throwing them.

Second thought is, that's enough of a reason in itself, but there
might be others such as the preciousness of petrol in wartime.
--
John Hatpin
Tim
2010-11-02 01:03:46 UTC
Permalink
On Mon, 01 Nov 2010 23:09:39 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies, and
somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything from blow
up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused by brushing them
off with your hands or patting them down with your blazer.
How effective are they, really? If they're so great, why didn't armies
make catapults and shoot them by the gross back in 1942? Or maybe modify
them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs from his Shermans back in
1944? And if they're so ineffective, why are they so famous? Is the
straight dope that they worked well if you had the engineering expertise
of Soviet Russia teaching people how to make them, but they weren't much
good in the hands of a typical radicalized 1969 Anthro major?
First thought is, they must be extremely risky things for the people
throwing them.
Compared to the response from whatever you were throwing them at? One
mistake amateurs make is failing to have a proper stopper in the neck
of the bottle and then failing to account for Newton's first law in
throwing it resulting in dousing themselfs with burning fuel.
Post by John Hatpin
Second thought is, that's enough of a reason in itself, but there
might be others such as the preciousness of petrol in wartime.
Like all improvised weapons, they were a weapon of asymmetrical
warfare and desperation. They were going to be very effective against
well armed soldiers but worked sometimes.
--
Tim
John Hatpin
2010-11-02 04:46:09 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
On Mon, 01 Nov 2010 23:09:39 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies, and
somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything from blow
up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused by brushing them
off with your hands or patting them down with your blazer.
How effective are they, really? If they're so great, why didn't armies
make catapults and shoot them by the gross back in 1942? Or maybe modify
them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs from his Shermans back in
1944? And if they're so ineffective, why are they so famous? Is the
straight dope that they worked well if you had the engineering expertise
of Soviet Russia teaching people how to make them, but they weren't much
good in the hands of a typical radicalized 1969 Anthro major?
First thought is, they must be extremely risky things for the people
throwing them.
Compared to the response from whatever you were throwing them at?
How is that relevant?
Post by Tim
One
mistake amateurs make is failing to have a proper stopper in the neck
of the bottle and then failing to account for Newton's first law in
throwing it resulting in dousing themselfs with burning fuel.
Seasoned professionals like yourself must surely tire of the
incompetence of amateurs.
--
John Hatpin
Greg Goss
2010-11-02 06:07:46 UTC
Permalink
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Mon, 01 Nov 2010 23:09:39 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
First thought is, they must be extremely risky things for the people
throwing them.
Compared to the response from whatever you were throwing them at?
How is that relevant?
Niven's second law of protests. "Never stand NEXT to someone throwing
shit at people with guns."
--
Tomorrow is today already.
Greg Goss, 1989-01-27
Tim
2010-11-02 07:39:34 UTC
Permalink
On Tue, 02 Nov 2010 04:46:09 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Mon, 01 Nov 2010 23:09:39 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies, and
somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything from blow
up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused by brushing them
off with your hands or patting them down with your blazer.
How effective are they, really? If they're so great, why didn't armies
make catapults and shoot them by the gross back in 1942? Or maybe modify
them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs from his Shermans back in
1944? And if they're so ineffective, why are they so famous? Is the
straight dope that they worked well if you had the engineering expertise
of Soviet Russia teaching people how to make them, but they weren't much
good in the hands of a typical radicalized 1969 Anthro major?
First thought is, they must be extremely risky things for the people
throwing them.
Compared to the response from whatever you were throwing them at?
How is that relevant?
Having your newly painted tank, of which you are justifiably proud,
scorched by some wog's ineffective homemade incendiary device is
likely to piss one off and sitting in said tank provides one with the
means to do something violent to the thrower in retaliation.
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
One
mistake amateurs make is failing to have a proper stopper in the neck
of the bottle and then failing to account for Newton's first law in
throwing it resulting in dousing themselfs with burning fuel.
Seasoned professionals like yourself must surely tire of the
incompetence of amateurs.
Actually, I'm a life member of the Pyrotechnics Guild International
and yeah, I do. Those of us who do not wish to become extra crispy
study accidents as a way of learning from the mistakes of others. It's
amazing the number of stupid ways people find to burn the shit out of
themselves with their own petards.

As with most things, there is a right way and a wrong way to chuck a
Molotov cocktail. Unlike with most things, doing it the wrong way can
involve a lot of pain and skin grafting.

Movies often show the partisans simply stuffing a rag in a wine bottle
of gasoline and lighting it up. Bad idea. If you try to wing it like a
football with the mouth forward, the flames from the wick are going to
blow back and burn your hand. Doing it the other way around is even
worse.
--
Tim
John Hatpin
2010-11-02 15:25:56 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
On Tue, 02 Nov 2010 04:46:09 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Mon, 01 Nov 2010 23:09:39 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies, and
somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything from blow
up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused by brushing them
off with your hands or patting them down with your blazer.
How effective are they, really? If they're so great, why didn't armies
make catapults and shoot them by the gross back in 1942? Or maybe modify
them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs from his Shermans back in
1944? And if they're so ineffective, why are they so famous? Is the
straight dope that they worked well if you had the engineering expertise
of Soviet Russia teaching people how to make them, but they weren't much
good in the hands of a typical radicalized 1969 Anthro major?
First thought is, they must be extremely risky things for the people
throwing them.
Compared to the response from whatever you were throwing them at?
How is that relevant?
Having your newly painted tank, of which you are justifiably proud,
scorched by some wog's ineffective homemade incendiary device is
likely to piss one off and sitting in said tank provides one with the
means to do something violent to the thrower in retaliation.
Yes, but that's an additional risk, not an alternative.
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
One
mistake amateurs make is failing to have a proper stopper in the neck
of the bottle and then failing to account for Newton's first law in
throwing it resulting in dousing themselfs with burning fuel.
Seasoned professionals like yourself must surely tire of the
incompetence of amateurs.
Actually, I'm a life member of the Pyrotechnics Guild International
and yeah, I do. Those of us who do not wish to become extra crispy
study accidents as a way of learning from the mistakes of others. It's
amazing the number of stupid ways people find to burn the shit out of
themselves with their own petards.
As with most things, there is a right way and a wrong way to chuck a
Molotov cocktail. Unlike with most things, doing it the wrong way can
involve a lot of pain and skin grafting.
Movies often show the partisans simply stuffing a rag in a wine bottle
of gasoline and lighting it up. Bad idea. If you try to wing it like a
football with the mouth forward, the flames from the wick are going to
blow back and burn your hand. Doing it the other way around is even
worse.
Ah, I hadn't realised that setting off fireworks and throwing Molotov
cocktails were considered congruent hobbies. I wonder if the MC
throwers feel likewise.
--
John Hatpin
Tim
2010-11-02 16:46:22 UTC
Permalink
On Tue, 02 Nov 2010 15:25:56 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Tue, 02 Nov 2010 04:46:09 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Mon, 01 Nov 2010 23:09:39 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies, and
somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything from blow
up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused by brushing them
off with your hands or patting them down with your blazer.
How effective are they, really? If they're so great, why didn't armies
make catapults and shoot them by the gross back in 1942? Or maybe modify
them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs from his Shermans back in
1944? And if they're so ineffective, why are they so famous? Is the
straight dope that they worked well if you had the engineering expertise
of Soviet Russia teaching people how to make them, but they weren't much
good in the hands of a typical radicalized 1969 Anthro major?
First thought is, they must be extremely risky things for the people
throwing them.
Compared to the response from whatever you were throwing them at?
How is that relevant?
Having your newly painted tank, of which you are justifiably proud,
scorched by some wog's ineffective homemade incendiary device is
likely to piss one off and sitting in said tank provides one with the
means to do something violent to the thrower in retaliation.
Yes, but that's an additional risk, not an alternative.
Granted, it is theoretically possible to us a Molotov cocktail in a
way that doesn't piss anyone off or carry any risk to the user in
addition to the inherent risk posed by the device itself. I'd estimate
those situations to be few and far between.
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
One
mistake amateurs make is failing to have a proper stopper in the neck
of the bottle and then failing to account for Newton's first law in
throwing it resulting in dousing themselfs with burning fuel.
Seasoned professionals like yourself must surely tire of the
incompetence of amateurs.
Actually, I'm a life member of the Pyrotechnics Guild International
and yeah, I do. Those of us who do not wish to become extra crispy
study accidents as a way of learning from the mistakes of others. It's
amazing the number of stupid ways people find to burn the shit out of
themselves with their own petards.
As with most things, there is a right way and a wrong way to chuck a
Molotov cocktail. Unlike with most things, doing it the wrong way can
involve a lot of pain and skin grafting.
Movies often show the partisans simply stuffing a rag in a wine bottle
of gasoline and lighting it up. Bad idea. If you try to wing it like a
football with the mouth forward, the flames from the wick are going to
blow back and burn your hand. Doing it the other way around is even
worse.
Ah, I hadn't realised that setting off fireworks and throwing Molotov
cocktails were considered congruent hobbies.
Pyrophiles tend to like everything associated with fire. Have you ever
watched Mythbusters?
Post by John Hatpin
I wonder if the MC
throwers feel likewise.
Some of them, undoubtedly.
--
Tim
John Hatpin
2010-11-02 19:39:39 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
On Tue, 02 Nov 2010 15:25:56 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Tue, 02 Nov 2010 04:46:09 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Mon, 01 Nov 2010 23:09:39 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies, and
somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything from blow
up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused by brushing them
off with your hands or patting them down with your blazer.
How effective are they, really? If they're so great, why didn't armies
make catapults and shoot them by the gross back in 1942? Or maybe modify
them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs from his Shermans back in
1944? And if they're so ineffective, why are they so famous? Is the
straight dope that they worked well if you had the engineering expertise
of Soviet Russia teaching people how to make them, but they weren't much
good in the hands of a typical radicalized 1969 Anthro major?
First thought is, they must be extremely risky things for the people
throwing them.
Compared to the response from whatever you were throwing them at?
How is that relevant?
Having your newly painted tank, of which you are justifiably proud,
scorched by some wog's ineffective homemade incendiary device is
likely to piss one off and sitting in said tank provides one with the
means to do something violent to the thrower in retaliation.
Yes, but that's an additional risk, not an alternative.
Granted, it is theoretically possible to us a Molotov cocktail in a
way that doesn't piss anyone off or carry any risk to the user in
addition to the inherent risk posed by the device itself. I'd estimate
those situations to be few and far between.
So you're saying that Molotov cocktails are risky because of the
danger the user puts themselves in, in addition to being dangerous
items in themselves. I thought that your first question above was
attempting to play down the latter.
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
One
mistake amateurs make is failing to have a proper stopper in the neck
of the bottle and then failing to account for Newton's first law in
throwing it resulting in dousing themselfs with burning fuel.
Seasoned professionals like yourself must surely tire of the
incompetence of amateurs.
Actually, I'm a life member of the Pyrotechnics Guild International
and yeah, I do. Those of us who do not wish to become extra crispy
study accidents as a way of learning from the mistakes of others. It's
amazing the number of stupid ways people find to burn the shit out of
themselves with their own petards.
As with most things, there is a right way and a wrong way to chuck a
Molotov cocktail. Unlike with most things, doing it the wrong way can
involve a lot of pain and skin grafting.
Movies often show the partisans simply stuffing a rag in a wine bottle
of gasoline and lighting it up. Bad idea. If you try to wing it like a
football with the mouth forward, the flames from the wick are going to
blow back and burn your hand. Doing it the other way around is even
worse.
Ah, I hadn't realised that setting off fireworks and throwing Molotov
cocktails were considered congruent hobbies.
Pyrophiles tend to like everything associated with fire. Have you ever
watched Mythbusters?
No, but I've seen clips. And don't worry, I'm only chain-yanking, (and
playing with the notion of a professional category of
Molotov-cocktail-thrower).
--
John Hatpin
Tim
2010-11-03 01:03:24 UTC
Permalink
On Tue, 02 Nov 2010 19:39:39 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Tue, 02 Nov 2010 15:25:56 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Tue, 02 Nov 2010 04:46:09 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Mon, 01 Nov 2010 23:09:39 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies, and
somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything from blow
up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused by brushing them
off with your hands or patting them down with your blazer.
How effective are they, really? If they're so great, why didn't armies
make catapults and shoot them by the gross back in 1942? Or maybe modify
them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs from his Shermans back in
1944? And if they're so ineffective, why are they so famous? Is the
straight dope that they worked well if you had the engineering expertise
of Soviet Russia teaching people how to make them, but they weren't much
good in the hands of a typical radicalized 1969 Anthro major?
First thought is, they must be extremely risky things for the people
throwing them.
Compared to the response from whatever you were throwing them at?
How is that relevant?
Having your newly painted tank, of which you are justifiably proud,
scorched by some wog's ineffective homemade incendiary device is
likely to piss one off and sitting in said tank provides one with the
means to do something violent to the thrower in retaliation.
Yes, but that's an additional risk, not an alternative.
Granted, it is theoretically possible to us a Molotov cocktail in a
way that doesn't piss anyone off or carry any risk to the user in
addition to the inherent risk posed by the device itself. I'd estimate
those situations to be few and far between.
So you're saying that Molotov cocktails are risky because of the
danger the user puts themselves in, in addition to being dangerous
items in themselves. I thought that your first question above was
attempting to play down the latter.
It's not hard to construct a Molotov Cocktail that is at least as safe
to use as any other infantry deployed incendiary weapons such as white
phosphorus grenades or flamethrowers which isn't saying a whole hell
of a lot. They just aren't very effective and have to be used at very
close range.
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
One
mistake amateurs make is failing to have a proper stopper in the neck
of the bottle and then failing to account for Newton's first law in
throwing it resulting in dousing themselfs with burning fuel.
Seasoned professionals like yourself must surely tire of the
incompetence of amateurs.
Actually, I'm a life member of the Pyrotechnics Guild International
and yeah, I do. Those of us who do not wish to become extra crispy
study accidents as a way of learning from the mistakes of others. It's
amazing the number of stupid ways people find to burn the shit out of
themselves with their own petards.
As with most things, there is a right way and a wrong way to chuck a
Molotov cocktail. Unlike with most things, doing it the wrong way can
involve a lot of pain and skin grafting.
Movies often show the partisans simply stuffing a rag in a wine bottle
of gasoline and lighting it up. Bad idea. If you try to wing it like a
football with the mouth forward, the flames from the wick are going to
blow back and burn your hand. Doing it the other way around is even
worse.
Ah, I hadn't realised that setting off fireworks and throwing Molotov
cocktails were considered congruent hobbies.
Pyrophiles tend to like everything associated with fire. Have you ever
watched Mythbusters?
No, but I've seen clips. And don't worry, I'm only chain-yanking, (and
playing with the notion of a professional category of
Molotov-cocktail-thrower).
Careers tend to be short but the retirement plan sucks.
--
Tim
N Jill Marsh
2010-11-02 21:12:27 UTC
Permalink
On Tue, 02 Nov 2010 15:25:56 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Actually, I'm a life member of the Pyrotechnics Guild International
and yeah, I do. Those of us who do not wish to become extra crispy
study accidents as a way of learning from the mistakes of others. It's
amazing the number of stupid ways people find to burn the shit out of
themselves with their own petards.
As with most things, there is a right way and a wrong way to chuck a
Molotov cocktail. Unlike with most things, doing it the wrong way can
involve a lot of pain and skin grafting.
Movies often show the partisans simply stuffing a rag in a wine bottle
of gasoline and lighting it up. Bad idea. If you try to wing it like a
football with the mouth forward, the flames from the wick are going to
blow back and burn your hand. Doing it the other way around is even
worse.
Ah, I hadn't realised that setting off fireworks and throwing Molotov
cocktails were considered congruent hobbies. I wonder if the MC
throwers feel likewise.
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail
thrower than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with
those was take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)

nj"what?"m
--
"His eyes were of the blue of the forget-me-not, and of a profound melancholy..."
Tim
2010-11-03 00:53:44 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
On Tue, 02 Nov 2010 15:25:56 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Actually, I'm a life member of the Pyrotechnics Guild International
and yeah, I do. Those of us who do not wish to become extra crispy
study accidents as a way of learning from the mistakes of others. It's
amazing the number of stupid ways people find to burn the shit out of
themselves with their own petards.
As with most things, there is a right way and a wrong way to chuck a
Molotov cocktail. Unlike with most things, doing it the wrong way can
involve a lot of pain and skin grafting.
Movies often show the partisans simply stuffing a rag in a wine bottle
of gasoline and lighting it up. Bad idea. If you try to wing it like a
football with the mouth forward, the flames from the wick are going to
blow back and burn your hand. Doing it the other way around is even
worse.
Ah, I hadn't realised that setting off fireworks and throwing Molotov
cocktails were considered congruent hobbies. I wonder if the MC
throwers feel likewise.
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail
thrower than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with
those was take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian
resistance. I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't
explode and I blame movie special effects for that misperception.
--
Tim
N Jill Marsh
2010-11-03 01:01:19 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail
thrower than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with
those was take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian
resistance. I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't
explode and I blame movie special effects for that misperception.
But cleaning the glass up is a bitch.

nj"but mooommmmmmm............!"m
--
"His eyes were of the blue of the forget-me-not, and of a profound melancholy..."
Tim
2010-11-03 01:04:35 UTC
Permalink
Post by N Jill Marsh
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail
thrower than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with
those was take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian
resistance. I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't
explode and I blame movie special effects for that misperception.
But cleaning the glass up is a bitch.
Gee, I never thought about that.
--
Tim
N Jill Marsh
2010-11-03 21:51:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail
thrower than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with
those was take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian
resistance. I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't
explode and I blame movie special effects for that misperception.
But cleaning the glass up is a bitch.
Gee, I never thought about that.
Your mom must have been a lot more laid back than mine.

nj"wait....no, maybe not"m
--
"His eyes were of the blue of the forget-me-not, and of a profound melancholy..."
Tim
2010-11-03 23:06:09 UTC
Permalink
Post by N Jill Marsh
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail
thrower than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with
those was take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian
resistance. I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't
explode and I blame movie special effects for that misperception.
But cleaning the glass up is a bitch.
Gee, I never thought about that.
Your mom must have been a lot more laid back than mine.
nj"wait....no, maybe not"m
--
Tim
Tim
2010-11-03 23:10:55 UTC
Permalink
Post by N Jill Marsh
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail
thrower than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with
those was take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian
resistance. I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't
explode and I blame movie special effects for that misperception.
But cleaning the glass up is a bitch.
Gee, I never thought about that.
Your mom must have been a lot more laid back than mine.
In my irresponsible yute, when I would have been answerable to the
momster, the deployment plan always called for an immediate tactical
withdrawal in force leaving no time for cleaning up the mess.
--
Tim
N Jill Marsh
2010-11-04 00:58:53 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail
thrower than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with
those was take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian
resistance. I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't
explode and I blame movie special effects for that misperception.
But cleaning the glass up is a bitch.
Gee, I never thought about that.
Your mom must have been a lot more laid back than mine.
In my irresponsible yute, when I would have been answerable to the
momster, the deployment plan always called for an immediate tactical
withdrawal in force leaving no time for cleaning up the mess.
Ah, so your mom must have been a lot less laid back than mine.

She denies everything, these days, especially in front of her
grandchildren, but shit we grew up like a pack of feral barefoot
heathens.

nj"bad example"m
--
"His eyes were of the blue of the forget-me-not, and of a profound melancholy..."
Tim
2010-11-04 20:23:19 UTC
Permalink
Post by N Jill Marsh
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail
thrower than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with
those was take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian
resistance. I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't
explode and I blame movie special effects for that misperception.
But cleaning the glass up is a bitch.
Gee, I never thought about that.
Your mom must have been a lot more laid back than mine.
In my irresponsible yute, when I would have been answerable to the
momster, the deployment plan always called for an immediate tactical
withdrawal in force leaving no time for cleaning up the mess.
Ah, so your mom must have been a lot less laid back than mine.
Laid back is not a descriptor that can be accurately used to describe
my mom. Of course, she was not the only authority we feared being
caught by in pursuing our pyrotechnical research.
Post by N Jill Marsh
She denies everything, these days, especially in front of her
grandchildren, but shit we grew up like a pack of feral barefoot
heathens.
My mom was fairly good at not seeing things that had she admitted to
seeing, she would have been compelled to take action to suppress.
Looking back, a lot of the things I was involved in were kind of risky
and if I found out about kids doing the same things today, I would
probably stop them.
--
Tim
Lee Ayrton
2010-11-04 22:52:49 UTC
Permalink
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail thrower
than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with those was
take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian resistance.
I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't explode and I
blame movie special effects for that misperception.
Wait until you try to explain to them that crashed cars don't always
explode into a huge fireball either.



Lee "But I saw it on TeeVee!" Ayrton
Tim
2010-11-05 07:15:37 UTC
Permalink
On Thu, 4 Nov 2010 22:52:49 +0000 (UTC), Lee Ayrton
Post by Lee Ayrton
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail thrower
than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with those was
take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian resistance.
I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't explode and I
blame movie special effects for that misperception.
Wait until you try to explain to them that crashed cars don't always
explode into a huge fireball either.
I do that too. They are generally skeptical. I'd go so far as to say
crashed cars almost never explode.
--
Tim
John Hatpin
2010-11-05 11:54:40 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
On Thu, 4 Nov 2010 22:52:49 +0000 (UTC), Lee Ayrton
Post by Lee Ayrton
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail thrower
than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with those was
take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian resistance.
I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't explode and I
blame movie special effects for that misperception.
Wait until you try to explain to them that crashed cars don't always
explode into a huge fireball either.
I do that too. They are generally skeptical. I'd go so far as to say
crashed cars almost never explode.
Is this a very narrow and precise definition of "explode"? Kind of
like someone saying there's no such thing as "almost never"?
--
John Hatpin
Tim
2010-11-05 16:18:51 UTC
Permalink
On Fri, 05 Nov 2010 11:54:40 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Thu, 4 Nov 2010 22:52:49 +0000 (UTC), Lee Ayrton
Post by Lee Ayrton
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail thrower
than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with those was
take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian resistance.
I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't explode and I
blame movie special effects for that misperception.
Wait until you try to explain to them that crashed cars don't always
explode into a huge fireball either.
I do that too. They are generally skeptical. I'd go so far as to say
crashed cars almost never explode.
Is this a very narrow and precise definition of "explode"? Kind of
like someone saying there's no such thing as "almost never"?
If you mean in the sense of a word game, no. Explode and catching on
fire are two different things.
--
Tim
John Hatpin
2010-11-05 17:13:52 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
On Fri, 05 Nov 2010 11:54:40 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Thu, 4 Nov 2010 22:52:49 +0000 (UTC), Lee Ayrton
Post by Lee Ayrton
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail thrower
than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with those was
take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian resistance.
I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't explode and I
blame movie special effects for that misperception.
Wait until you try to explain to them that crashed cars don't always
explode into a huge fireball either.
I do that too. They are generally skeptical. I'd go so far as to say
crashed cars almost never explode.
Is this a very narrow and precise definition of "explode"? Kind of
like someone saying there's no such thing as "almost never"?
If you mean in the sense of a word game, no. Explode and catching on
fire are two different things.
And the thing that does sometimes happen to a car in an accident is
that the petrol ignites, right? And can that happen in a pretty
dramatic fashion, that might be incorrectly but frequently described
as "exploding"?
--
John Hatpin
Mark Steese
2010-11-05 18:54:47 UTC
Permalink
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Fri, 05 Nov 2010 11:54:40 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Thu, 4 Nov 2010 22:52:49 +0000 (UTC), Lee Ayrton
Post by Lee Ayrton
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail
thrower than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did
with those was take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian
resistance. I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs
don't explode and I blame movie special effects for that
misperception.
Wait until you try to explain to them that crashed cars don't
always explode into a huge fireball either.
I do that too. They are generally skeptical. I'd go so far as to
say crashed cars almost never explode.
Is this a very narrow and precise definition of "explode"? Kind of
like someone saying there's no such thing as "almost never"?
If you mean in the sense of a word game, no. Explode and catching on
fire are two different things.
And the thing that does sometimes happen to a car in an accident is
that the petrol ignites, right? And can that happen in a pretty
dramatic fashion, that might be incorrectly but frequently described
as "exploding"?
Not really, no. Cars are specifically designed to minimize the chances
that the fuel will ignite "in a pretty dramatic fashion" in the event of
a collision. Cars bursting into flames on impact is something that
happens in movies, not real life. It seems to me that in real life, a
car that tended to burn up in a Hollywood-style fireball would prove to
be very unpopular with the car-buying public. The Ford Pinto acquired an
unshakeable reputation as an exploding deathtrap after a few incidents
that were considerably less dramatic than a typical movie explosion; no
manufacturer wants to be the one who makes the next Pinto.

Even on those real-life occasions when a car overheats on the highway
and catches fire, the combustion is rarely, if ever, rapid enough to
cause immediate destruction. Regardless of what one thinks of
capitalists' regard for their customers, they have to know that
incinerating drivers is bad for business.
--
The Alps are grand in their beauty, Mount Shasta is sublime in its
desolation. -William H. Brewer
Boron Elgar
2010-11-05 19:08:58 UTC
Permalink
On Fri, 5 Nov 2010 18:54:47 +0000 (UTC), Mark Steese
Post by Mark Steese
Post by John Hatpin
And the thing that does sometimes happen to a car in an accident is
that the petrol ignites, right? And can that happen in a pretty
dramatic fashion, that might be incorrectly but frequently described
as "exploding"?
Not really, no. Cars are specifically designed to minimize the chances
that the fuel will ignite "in a pretty dramatic fashion" in the event of
a collision. Cars bursting into flames on impact is something that
happens in movies, not real life. It seems to me that in real life, a
car that tended to burn up in a Hollywood-style fireball would prove to
be very unpopular with the car-buying public. The Ford Pinto acquired an
unshakeable reputation as an exploding deathtrap after a few incidents
that were considerably less dramatic than a typical movie explosion; no
manufacturer wants to be the one who makes the next Pinto.
Even on those real-life occasions when a car overheats on the highway
and catches fire, the combustion is rarely, if ever, rapid enough to
cause immediate destruction. Regardless of what one thinks of
capitalists' regard for their customers, they have to know that
incinerating drivers is bad for business.
There is that older Ford Crown Vic Police Interceptor, though. That
could be a nice bunch of flame fun when the tank ruptured in a rear
collision... I think they prefer Dodge Chargers now.

http://www.safetyforum.com/cvpi/
Mac
2010-11-05 19:33:37 UTC
Permalink
On Fri, 05 Nov 2010 15:08:58 -0400, Boron Elgar
Post by Boron Elgar
There is that older Ford Crown Vic Police Interceptor, though. That
could be a nice bunch of flame fun when the tank ruptured in a rear
collision... I think they prefer Dodge Chargers now.
http://www.safetyforum.com/cvpi/
It would be better if you cited something that wasn't intended for
ambulance chasing. That site is openly intended to gather parties for
a law suit; it may not be the most open-minded.
Boron Elgar
2010-11-05 22:11:16 UTC
Permalink
Post by Mac
On Fri, 05 Nov 2010 15:08:58 -0400, Boron Elgar
Post by Boron Elgar
There is that older Ford Crown Vic Police Interceptor, though. That
could be a nice bunch of flame fun when the tank ruptured in a rear
collision... I think they prefer Dodge Chargers now.
http://www.safetyforum.com/cvpi/
It would be better if you cited something that wasn't intended for
ambulance chasing. That site is openly intended to gather parties for
a law suit; it may not be the most open-minded.
Sweetie, the problem existed no matter what link I provided.
Mac
2010-11-05 22:33:03 UTC
Permalink
On Fri, 05 Nov 2010 18:11:16 -0400, Boron Elgar
Post by Boron Elgar
Post by Mac
On Fri, 05 Nov 2010 15:08:58 -0400, Boron Elgar
Post by Boron Elgar
There is that older Ford Crown Vic Police Interceptor, though. That
could be a nice bunch of flame fun when the tank ruptured in a rear
collision... I think they prefer Dodge Chargers now.
http://www.safetyforum.com/cvpi/
It would be better if you cited something that wasn't intended for
ambulance chasing. That site is openly intended to gather parties for
a law suit; it may not be the most open-minded.
Sweetie, the problem existed no matter what link I provided.
No, Woogums. It may not, no matter what somebody who hopes to extort
a settlement might say.

Notice that your URL showed that cops has a fire rate more than four
times that of other Crown Vics at their worst, and about 8 times
higher than crown vics in general. Given police outfitters propensity
to sinking great pointy bolts into the floor and back seats of cop
cars, the evidence presented is entierly consoistent with operator
error, not designer.

The inclusion of the Taurus was a classic;, whether of mendacity or
ignorance, who can say? A Taurus used in pursuit service might kill
its crew the first time it tried a side-bump; it would certainly risk
totalling the vehicle.
Tim
2010-11-05 20:32:23 UTC
Permalink
On Fri, 05 Nov 2010 17:13:52 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Fri, 05 Nov 2010 11:54:40 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Thu, 4 Nov 2010 22:52:49 +0000 (UTC), Lee Ayrton
Post by Lee Ayrton
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail thrower
than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with those was
take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian resistance.
I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't explode and I
blame movie special effects for that misperception.
Wait until you try to explain to them that crashed cars don't always
explode into a huge fireball either.
I do that too. They are generally skeptical. I'd go so far as to say
crashed cars almost never explode.
Is this a very narrow and precise definition of "explode"? Kind of
like someone saying there's no such thing as "almost never"?
If you mean in the sense of a word game, no. Explode and catching on
fire are two different things.
And the thing that does sometimes happen to a car in an accident is
that the petrol ignites, right? And can that happen in a pretty
dramatic fashion, that might be incorrectly but frequently described
as "exploding"?
Pyros spend inordinate amounts of time talking about whether or not a
rapid release of chemical energy fits the definition of exploding. Or
even more specifically, detonation versus deflagration. Liquid
gasoline may burn fairly rapidly after a car wreck but it is not an
explosion.

Movie special effects people go to great lengths to create car wreck
scenes that do not occur in nature. They use high explosives or black
powder and a plethora of mechanical devices to get the effects
audiences have come to expect.

I said almost never because gasoline vapor can detonate as it does
inside an internal combustion engine cylinder experiencing
pre-ignition or pinging. In a properly functioning cylinder, although
the flame front propagates rapidly, it is not an explosion.

It may be theoretically possible that in a car wreck, the gasoline
vapors in a fuel tank could explode but I think this would be
extremely rare. I wonder if Mythbusters has ever taken this one on?
--
Tim
John Hatpin
2010-11-05 21:08:09 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
On Fri, 05 Nov 2010 17:13:52 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Fri, 05 Nov 2010 11:54:40 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Thu, 4 Nov 2010 22:52:49 +0000 (UTC), Lee Ayrton
Post by Lee Ayrton
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail thrower
than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with those was
take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian resistance.
I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't explode and I
blame movie special effects for that misperception.
Wait until you try to explain to them that crashed cars don't always
explode into a huge fireball either.
I do that too. They are generally skeptical. I'd go so far as to say
crashed cars almost never explode.
Is this a very narrow and precise definition of "explode"? Kind of
like someone saying there's no such thing as "almost never"?
If you mean in the sense of a word game, no. Explode and catching on
fire are two different things.
And the thing that does sometimes happen to a car in an accident is
that the petrol ignites, right? And can that happen in a pretty
dramatic fashion, that might be incorrectly but frequently described
as "exploding"?
Pyros spend inordinate amounts of time talking about whether or not a
rapid release of chemical energy fits the definition of exploding. Or
even more specifically, detonation versus deflagration. Liquid
gasoline may burn fairly rapidly after a car wreck but it is not an
explosion.
Movie special effects people go to great lengths to create car wreck
scenes that do not occur in nature. They use high explosives or black
powder and a plethora of mechanical devices to get the effects
audiences have come to expect.
I said almost never because gasoline vapor can detonate as it does
inside an internal combustion engine cylinder experiencing
pre-ignition or pinging. In a properly functioning cylinder, although
the flame front propagates rapidly, it is not an explosion.
It may be theoretically possible that in a car wreck, the gasoline
vapors in a fuel tank could explode but I think this would be
extremely rare. I wonder if Mythbusters has ever taken this one on?
Just to be clear, I'm trying to explore the grey area between your
literal definition of an explosion (which is no news to me, and which
I have no problem with) and the kind of thing that someone with no
understanding might erroneously *call* an explosion, such as a sudden
conflagration. In particular, I'm wondering about the frequency of
incidents at that lower end of the scale.
--
John Hatpin
Tim
2010-11-05 21:43:51 UTC
Permalink
On Fri, 05 Nov 2010 21:08:09 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Fri, 05 Nov 2010 17:13:52 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Fri, 05 Nov 2010 11:54:40 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Thu, 4 Nov 2010 22:52:49 +0000 (UTC), Lee Ayrton
Post by Lee Ayrton
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail thrower
than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with those was
take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian resistance.
I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't explode and I
blame movie special effects for that misperception.
Wait until you try to explain to them that crashed cars don't always
explode into a huge fireball either.
I do that too. They are generally skeptical. I'd go so far as to say
crashed cars almost never explode.
Is this a very narrow and precise definition of "explode"? Kind of
like someone saying there's no such thing as "almost never"?
If you mean in the sense of a word game, no. Explode and catching on
fire are two different things.
And the thing that does sometimes happen to a car in an accident is
that the petrol ignites, right? And can that happen in a pretty
dramatic fashion, that might be incorrectly but frequently described
as "exploding"?
Pyros spend inordinate amounts of time talking about whether or not a
rapid release of chemical energy fits the definition of exploding. Or
even more specifically, detonation versus deflagration. Liquid
gasoline may burn fairly rapidly after a car wreck but it is not an
explosion.
Movie special effects people go to great lengths to create car wreck
scenes that do not occur in nature. They use high explosives or black
powder and a plethora of mechanical devices to get the effects
audiences have come to expect.
I said almost never because gasoline vapor can detonate as it does
inside an internal combustion engine cylinder experiencing
pre-ignition or pinging. In a properly functioning cylinder, although
the flame front propagates rapidly, it is not an explosion.
It may be theoretically possible that in a car wreck, the gasoline
vapors in a fuel tank could explode but I think this would be
extremely rare. I wonder if Mythbusters has ever taken this one on?
Just to be clear, I'm trying to explore the grey area between your
literal definition of an explosion (which is no news to me, and which
I have no problem with) and the kind of thing that someone with no
understanding might erroneously *call* an explosion, such as a sudden
conflagration. In particular, I'm wondering about the frequency of
incidents at that lower end of the scale.
I don't have any actual data but I have been to a bunch of scrap yards
and seen thousands to cars badly damaged in wrecks. Very few of them
are burned. Hollywood would have us believe nearly every crash
includes a fireball. Airplanes probably (again I have no data to back
it up) burn more frequently than cars but most of the small plane
wreckage I have seen don't include signs of fire.
--
Tim
groo
2010-11-05 22:58:36 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
Hollywood would have us believe nearly every crash
includes a fireball.
That was one of my favorite scenes in the new TV series "Terriers". The 2
main protagonists pushed a car with a dead guy in it over a steep
embankment. "Hey, it didn't explode!" "That only happens in the movies."

Which turned out to be fortuitous, since one of them had to retrieve the
dead guy's wallet a day or two later.
--
"Pudding can't fill the emptiness inside me... but it'll help!" - Captain
Hank Murphy, Sealab 2021
John Hatpin
2010-11-06 00:18:53 UTC
Permalink
Tim wrote:

[not bothering about attributions here, too many to track]
Post by Tim
Post by Tim
Post by Lee Ayrton
I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't explode and I
blame movie special effects for that misperception.
Wait until you try to explain to them that crashed cars don't always
explode into a huge fireball either.
Movie special effects people go to great lengths to create car wreck
scenes that do not occur in nature.
Hollywood would have us believe nearly every crash
includes a fireball.
(Psst, I sense a theme here.)

So, how come cars explode in accidents? It happens all the time, I
swear!
--
John Hatpin
Xho Jingleheimerschmidt
2010-11-06 01:00:33 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
I don't have any actual data but I have been to a bunch of scrap yards
and seen thousands to cars badly damaged in wrecks. Very few of them
are burned. Hollywood would have us believe nearly every crash
includes a fireball. Airplanes probably (again I have no data to back
it up) burn more frequently than cars but most of the small plane
wreckage I have seen don't include signs of fire.
I think Hollywood could generally care less about the crashes of *small*
planes.

Xho
Snidely
2010-11-07 20:23:42 UTC
Permalink
Post by Xho Jingleheimerschmidt
I think Hollywood could generally care less about the crashes of *small*
planes.
You missed the pilot of No Ordinary Family, didn't you?

There is also <http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0088758/>, though I
happened on the end of the movie.

<http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0093378/> -- the storyline involves a
plane accident, but I haven't checked yet to know if they show it.

All My Children had some episodes around a small place accident, IIRC.

Not a large sample, but not the empty set, either.

/dps
Xho Jingleheimerschmidt
2010-11-07 20:44:39 UTC
Permalink
Post by Snidely
Post by Xho Jingleheimerschmidt
I think Hollywood could generally care less about the crashes of *small*
planes.
You missed the pilot of No Ordinary Family, didn't you?
I think I only missed 15 minutes of the pilot. Was it all over in 15
minutes? Or maybe I missed the entire pilot and 15 minutes of the next
episode.

Xho
Snidely
2010-11-07 20:53:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by Snidely
Post by Xho Jingleheimerschmidt
I think Hollywood could generally care less about the crashes of *small*
planes.
You missed the pilot of No Ordinary Family, didn't you?
I think I only missed 15 minutes of the pilot.  Was it all over in 15
minutes?  Or maybe I missed the entire pilot and 15 minutes of the next
episode.
I'm not sure. Flying down the river below treetop level took much
less than 15 minutes, I'm pretty sure, but I was looking for who had
been voted off the island^Whardwood.

/dps
a***@yahoo.com
2010-11-07 22:28:13 UTC
Permalink
Post by Snidely
Post by Xho Jingleheimerschmidt
I think Hollywood could generally care less about the crashes of *small*
planes.
You missed the pilot of No Ordinary Family, didn't you?
I missed it, but I am guessing the pilot must have hit something.
Reunite Gondwanaland (Mary Shafer)
2010-11-09 07:13:07 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
I don't have any actual data but I have been to a bunch of scrap yards
and seen thousands to cars badly damaged in wrecks. Very few of them
are burned. Hollywood would have us believe nearly every crash
includes a fireball. Airplanes probably (again I have no data to back
it up) burn more frequently than cars but most of the small plane
wreckage I have seen don't include signs of fire.
Interestingly enough, however, at least one eye witness will say that
the airplane was on fire as it fell out of the sky. I've seen this
happen when video showed no flames at all. This is such a classic
observer error that aircraft accident investigation classes warn
heavily against believing such testimony without corroborating
evidence.

Mary "Having taken a number of such classes."
--
Mary Shafer Retired aerospace research engineer
We didn't just do weird stuff at Dryden, we wrote reports about it.
***@gmail.com or ***@qnet.com
Visit my blog at http://thedigitalknitter.blogspot.com/
Mac
2010-11-09 06:23:59 UTC
Permalink
On Mon, 08 Nov 2010 23:13:07 -0800, "Reunite Gondwanaland (Mary
Post by Reunite Gondwanaland (Mary Shafer)
Post by Tim
I don't have any actual data but I have been to a bunch of scrap yards
and seen thousands to cars badly damaged in wrecks. Very few of them
are burned. Hollywood would have us believe nearly every crash
includes a fireball. Airplanes probably (again I have no data to back
it up) burn more frequently than cars but most of the small plane
wreckage I have seen don't include signs of fire.
Interestingly enough, however, at least one eye witness will say that
the airplane was on fire as it fell out of the sky. I've seen this
happen when video showed no flames at all. This is such a classic
observer error that aircraft accident investigation classes warn
heavily against believing such testimony without corroborating
evidence.
Mary "Having taken a number of such classes."
"I heard a green airplane."

AN "Lying like an eyewitness"
Tim
2010-11-09 08:21:35 UTC
Permalink
On Mon, 08 Nov 2010 23:13:07 -0800, "Reunite Gondwanaland (Mary
Post by Reunite Gondwanaland (Mary Shafer)
Post by Tim
I don't have any actual data but I have been to a bunch of scrap yards
and seen thousands to cars badly damaged in wrecks. Very few of them
are burned. Hollywood would have us believe nearly every crash
includes a fireball. Airplanes probably (again I have no data to back
it up) burn more frequently than cars but most of the small plane
wreckage I have seen don't include signs of fire.
Interestingly enough, however, at least one eye witness will say that
the airplane was on fire as it fell out of the sky. I've seen this
happen when video showed no flames at all. This is such a classic
observer error that aircraft accident investigation classes warn
heavily against believing such testimony without corroborating
evidence.
That is interesting. Do they say where that misperception comes from?
--
Tim
Reunite Gondwanaland (Mary Shafer)
2010-11-11 06:58:29 UTC
Permalink
Post by Mac
On Mon, 08 Nov 2010 23:13:07 -0800, "Reunite Gondwanaland (Mary
Post by Reunite Gondwanaland (Mary Shafer)
Interestingly enough, however, at least one eye witness will say that
the airplane was on fire as it fell out of the sky. I've seen this
happen when video showed no flames at all. This is such a classic
observer error that aircraft accident investigation classes warn
heavily against believing such testimony without corroborating
evidence.
That is interesting. Do they say where that misperception comes from?
Apparently such misperceptions are quite common and this is just one
example. People's perception is heavily influenced by expectations,
to the point of seeing things that aren't there. There has been a lot
of research into eye witness veracity in recent years. It's quite
dismaying how low it can be.

Mary "Believing is seeing."
--
Mary Shafer Retired aerospace research engineer
We didn't just do weird stuff at Dryden, we wrote reports about it.
***@gmail.com or ***@qnet.com
Visit my blog at http://thedigitalknitter.blogspot.com/
Dhubghall
2010-11-09 19:23:48 UTC
Permalink
Post by Reunite Gondwanaland (Mary Shafer)
Post by Tim
I don't have any actual data but I have been to a bunch of scrap yards
and seen thousands to cars badly damaged in wrecks. Very few of them
are burned. Hollywood would have us believe nearly every crash
includes a fireball. Airplanes probably (again I have no data to back
it up) burn more frequently than cars but most of the small plane
wreckage I have seen don't include signs of fire.
Interestingly enough, however, at least one eye witness will say that
the airplane was on fire as it fell out of the sky. I've seen this
happen when video showed no flames at all. This is such a classic
observer error that aircraft accident investigation classes warn
heavily against believing such testimony without corroborating
evidence.
Earlier this year when that lunatic crashed his plane into the IRS offices
across the street there where some amusing eyewitness reports immediatly
reported by the local paper. A few of them were oddly specific (estimated
air speed, flap position, etc.). Turns out that one of the witnesses
across the street was a longtime pilot instructor in that airframe and
pretty much had it right on.


Dougall
Reunite Gondwanaland (Mary Shafer)
2010-11-11 06:54:19 UTC
Permalink
Post by Dhubghall
Earlier this year when that lunatic crashed his plane into the IRS offices
across the street there where some amusing eyewitness reports immediatly
reported by the local paper. A few of them were oddly specific (estimated
air speed, flap position, etc.). Turns out that one of the witnesses
across the street was a longtime pilot instructor in that airframe and
pretty much had it right on.
I've seen similar witnesses on our local channels; I think it's
because a lot of accidents happen near airports, increasing the odds
of finding such an expert. In the case you mention, it sounds as if
it was sheer coincidence.

When JFK jr flew into the ocean, one of the networks had an actual
pilot on the staff whom they interviewed. It was quite refreshing,
particularly his tactful corrections to the interviewer. It was
amazing how many ways he found not to say "That's a stupid question."

Mary "I wouldn't have done nearly as well."
--
Mary Shafer Retired aerospace research engineer
We didn't just do weird stuff at Dryden, we wrote reports about it.
***@gmail.com or ***@qnet.com
Visit my blog at http://thedigitalknitter.blogspot.com/
Hactar
2010-11-05 22:15:55 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
On Fri, 05 Nov 2010 17:13:52 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Fri, 05 Nov 2010 11:54:40 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Thu, 4 Nov 2010 22:52:49 +0000 (UTC), Lee Ayrton
Post by Lee Ayrton
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov
cocktail thrower
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by Lee Ayrton
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with
those was
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by Lee Ayrton
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian
resistance.
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by Lee Ayrton
Post by Tim
I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't
explode and I
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by Lee Ayrton
Post by Tim
blame movie special effects for that misperception.
Wait until you try to explain to them that crashed cars don't always
explode into a huge fireball either.
I do that too. They are generally skeptical. I'd go so far as to say
crashed cars almost never explode.
Is this a very narrow and precise definition of "explode"? Kind of
like someone saying there's no such thing as "almost never"?
If you mean in the sense of a word game, no. Explode and catching on
fire are two different things.
And the thing that does sometimes happen to a car in an accident is
that the petrol ignites, right? And can that happen in a pretty
dramatic fashion, that might be incorrectly but frequently described
as "exploding"?
Pyros spend inordinate amounts of time talking about whether or not a
rapid release of chemical energy fits the definition of exploding. Or
even more specifically, detonation versus deflagration. Liquid
gasoline may burn fairly rapidly after a car wreck but it is not an
explosion.
Movie special effects people go to great lengths to create car wreck
scenes that do not occur in nature. They use high explosives or black
powder and a plethora of mechanical devices to get the effects
audiences have come to expect.
I said almost never because gasoline vapor can detonate as it does
inside an internal combustion engine cylinder experiencing
pre-ignition or pinging. In a properly functioning cylinder, although
the flame front propagates rapidly, it is not an explosion.
It may be theoretically possible that in a car wreck, the gasoline
vapors in a fuel tank could explode but I think this would be
extremely rare. I wonder if Mythbusters has ever taken this one on?
Just to be clear, I'm trying to explore the grey area between your
literal definition of an explosion (which is no news to me, and which
I have no problem with) and the kind of thing that someone with no
understanding might erroneously *call* an explosion, such as a sudden
conflagration.
People misuse all sorts of terms. Just because a bunch of people say
gasoline explodes, doesn't mean we should change the definition of
"explode" to match their murky thought processes. A lot of people think
a computer is that shiny bit with the pretty pictures too, and memory
comes in IDE and SCSI flavors.
--
-eben ***@vTerYizUonI.nOetP royalty.mine.nu:81

Hi! I'm a .sig virus! Copy me to your .sig!
Xho Jingleheimerschmidt
2010-11-06 01:20:31 UTC
Permalink
Post by Hactar
Post by Tim
On Fri, 05 Nov 2010 17:13:52 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Fri, 05 Nov 2010 11:54:40 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
On Thu, 4 Nov 2010 22:52:49 +0000 (UTC), Lee Ayrton
Post by Lee Ayrton
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov
cocktail thrower
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by Lee Ayrton
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with
those was
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by Lee Ayrton
Post by Tim
Post by N Jill Marsh
take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian
resistance.
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by Lee Ayrton
Post by Tim
I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't
explode and I
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Tim
Post by Lee Ayrton
Post by Tim
blame movie special effects for that misperception.
Wait until you try to explain to them that crashed cars don't always
explode into a huge fireball either.
I do that too. They are generally skeptical. I'd go so far as to say
crashed cars almost never explode.
Is this a very narrow and precise definition of "explode"? Kind of
like someone saying there's no such thing as "almost never"?
If you mean in the sense of a word game, no. Explode and catching on
fire are two different things.
And the thing that does sometimes happen to a car in an accident is
that the petrol ignites, right? And can that happen in a pretty
dramatic fashion, that might be incorrectly but frequently described
as "exploding"?
Pyros spend inordinate amounts of time talking about whether or not a
rapid release of chemical energy fits the definition of exploding. Or
even more specifically, detonation versus deflagration. Liquid
gasoline may burn fairly rapidly after a car wreck but it is not an
explosion.
Movie special effects people go to great lengths to create car wreck
scenes that do not occur in nature. They use high explosives or black
powder and a plethora of mechanical devices to get the effects
audiences have come to expect.
I said almost never because gasoline vapor can detonate as it does
inside an internal combustion engine cylinder experiencing
pre-ignition or pinging. In a properly functioning cylinder, although
the flame front propagates rapidly, it is not an explosion.
It may be theoretically possible that in a car wreck, the gasoline
vapors in a fuel tank could explode but I think this would be
extremely rare. I wonder if Mythbusters has ever taken this one on?
Just to be clear, I'm trying to explore the grey area between your
literal definition of an explosion (which is no news to me, and which
I have no problem with) and the kind of thing that someone with no
understanding might erroneously *call* an explosion, such as a sudden
conflagration.
People misuse all sorts of terms. Just because a bunch of people say
gasoline explodes, doesn't mean we should change the definition of
"explode" to match their murky thought processes.
Right. Clearly the only correct meaning of "explode" is to boo someone
so vigorously that that they flee the stage in terror.


Xho
Lee Ayrton
2010-11-05 22:13:06 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
Movie special effects people go to great lengths to create car wreck
scenes that do not occur in nature. They use high explosives or black
powder and a plethora of mechanical devices to get the effects audiences
have come to expect.
Quite so. Amongst their arsenal are such things as plastic bags filled
with flammable liquid, set atop a small explosive charge in a paint can
or similar container. Setting off the explosive boosts the liquid into
the air, aerosolizing and igniting it for a nice, impressive fireball.

Body panels such as hood (bonnet), trunk (boot) lid and door skins are
cut free from the vehicle so that they can be flung free from the car, or
cut free and connected by a measured length of chain to limit the
distance it can fly. Small mortars with an explosive charge in the
bottom and filled with sand are aimed at the panels and welded in place,
the sand adds force to the explosion so the sheet metal will not just sit
there.

Cars used for static fire shots are carefully prepped and stripped of
anything not necessary for the shot, and any remaining fluids are
drained. This includes the factory fuel tank and the airbags. The
control wires for a burning car gag are often household armored cable
wiring (the spiral-wrapped metal "BX" cable), to protect the wiring from
fire.

Noted on the recently-aired "The Walking Dead" pilot: There was a semi-
trailer tractor laying on its left side in one of the traffic jam shots.
The truck had axles and wheels but if one was looking it could be seen
that it had no running gear.
Mac
2010-11-05 13:15:31 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
On Thu, 4 Nov 2010 22:52:49 +0000 (UTC), Lee Ayrton
Post by Lee Ayrton
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail thrower
than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with those was
take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian resistance.
I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't explode and I
blame movie special effects for that misperception.
Wait until you try to explain to them that crashed cars don't always
explode into a huge fireball either.
I do that too. They are generally skeptical. I'd go so far as to say
crashed cars almost never explode.
Not a Gremlin fan, I take it?
Tim
2010-11-05 16:20:13 UTC
Permalink
Post by Mac
Post by Tim
On Thu, 4 Nov 2010 22:52:49 +0000 (UTC), Lee Ayrton
Post by Lee Ayrton
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail thrower
than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with those was
take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian resistance.
I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't explode and I
blame movie special effects for that misperception.
Wait until you try to explain to them that crashed cars don't always
explode into a huge fireball either.
I do that too. They are generally skeptical. I'd go so far as to say
crashed cars almost never explode.
Not a Gremlin fan, I take it?
It wasn't a very good design. Early Mustangs had a similar flaw but
didn't get the same amount of bad press.
--
Tim
Mac
2010-11-05 16:32:12 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
Post by Mac
Post by Tim
On Thu, 4 Nov 2010 22:52:49 +0000 (UTC), Lee Ayrton
Post by Lee Ayrton
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail thrower
than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with those was
take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian resistance.
I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't explode and I
blame movie special effects for that misperception.
Wait until you try to explain to them that crashed cars don't always
explode into a huge fireball either.
I do that too. They are generally skeptical. I'd go so far as to say
crashed cars almost never explode.
Not a Gremlin fan, I take it?
It wasn't a very good design. Early Mustangs had a similar flaw but
didn't get the same amount of bad press.
Nothing even close as bad. If you had decided to design a vehicle to
kill the occupants in a moderate rear end collision, the Gremlin would
be your starting point. They are about the only modern (FCVOM) car
using modern (FCVOM) gasoline that does have a mild chance of actual
fuel-air deflagration.
John Hatpin
2010-11-05 17:14:41 UTC
Permalink
Post by Mac
Post by Tim
Post by Mac
Post by Tim
On Thu, 4 Nov 2010 22:52:49 +0000 (UTC), Lee Ayrton
Post by Lee Ayrton
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail thrower
than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with those was
take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian resistance.
I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't explode and I
blame movie special effects for that misperception.
Wait until you try to explain to them that crashed cars don't always
explode into a huge fireball either.
I do that too. They are generally skeptical. I'd go so far as to say
crashed cars almost never explode.
Not a Gremlin fan, I take it?
It wasn't a very good design. Early Mustangs had a similar flaw but
didn't get the same amount of bad press.
Nothing even close as bad. If you had decided to design a vehicle to
kill the occupants in a moderate rear end collision, the Gremlin would
be your starting point. They are about the only modern (FCVOM) car
using modern (FCVOM) gasoline that does have a mild chance of actual
fuel-air deflagration.
What was the deal with Pintos and fuel tanks in the 1970s?
--
John Hatpin
Mac
2010-11-05 18:12:03 UTC
Permalink
On Fri, 05 Nov 2010 17:14:41 +0000, John Hatpin
Post by John Hatpin
Post by Mac
Post by Tim
It wasn't a very good design. Early Mustangs had a similar flaw but
didn't get the same amount of bad press.
Nothing even close as bad. If you had decided to design a vehicle to
kill the occupants in a moderate rear end collision, the Gremlin would
be your starting point. They are about the only modern (FCVOM) car
using modern (FCVOM) gasoline that does have a mild chance of actual
fuel-air deflagration.
What was the deal with Pintos and fuel tanks in the 1970s?
Lawyers, mostly. The USAnian Pinto had minor design flaws, a
conscious decision not to fix them, and a maker with deep pockets.

This distunguished them from AMC, which was broke, and GM, which was
clueless.
Tim
2010-11-05 20:38:42 UTC
Permalink
Post by Mac
Post by Tim
Post by Mac
Post by Tim
On Thu, 4 Nov 2010 22:52:49 +0000 (UTC), Lee Ayrton
Post by Lee Ayrton
Totally congruent, and I say that as more of a Molotov cocktail thrower
than a fireworks setter-offer. (Pretty much all we did with those was
take them apart to get the flammable stuff.)
I've done plenty of both and I wasn't even in the Hungarian resistance.
I've found it hard to convince most people that MCs don't explode and I
blame movie special effects for that misperception.
Wait until you try to explain to them that crashed cars don't always
explode into a huge fireball either.
I do that too. They are generally skeptical. I'd go so far as to say
crashed cars almost never explode.
Not a Gremlin fan, I take it?
It wasn't a very good design. Early Mustangs had a similar flaw but
didn't get the same amount of bad press.
Nothing even close as bad. If you had decided to design a vehicle to
kill the occupants in a moderate rear end collision, the Gremlin would
be your starting point. They are about the only modern (FCVOM) car
using modern (FCVOM) gasoline that does have a mild chance of actual
fuel-air deflagration.
If my memory serves, didn't the engineers, for manufacturing cost and
weight savings make the top of the gas tank the bottom of the trunk
eliminating the firewall effect of the trunk floor found in most
designs? Thus, if in a collision, the fuel tank burst, it could spill
its burning contents directly into the passenger compartment?
--
Tim
Mac
2010-11-05 21:30:45 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
Post by Mac
Post by Tim
It wasn't a very good design. Early Mustangs had a similar flaw but
didn't get the same amount of bad press.
Nothing even close as bad. If you had decided to design a vehicle to
kill the occupants in a moderate rear end collision, the Gremlin would
be your starting point. They are about the only modern (FCVOM) car
using modern (FCVOM) gasoline that does have a mild chance of actual
fuel-air deflagration.
If my memory serves, didn't the engineers, for manufacturing cost and
weight savings make the top of the gas tank the bottom of the trunk
eliminating the firewall effect of the trunk floor found in most
designs? Thus, if in a collision, the fuel tank burst, it could spill
its burning contents directly into the passenger compartment?
Not the trunk floor, the rear deck. All there was was a sheet of
masonite and a couple retainer straps between the tank ans the
passenger comparment. If hit hard from behind, the gas tank tended to
flip right up into the passenger compartment, with a three-inch hole
where the filler tube used to be. The whole shebang got soaked with
fuel; sometimes something lit it.
Tim
2010-11-05 22:28:16 UTC
Permalink
Post by Mac
Post by Tim
Post by Mac
Post by Tim
It wasn't a very good design. Early Mustangs had a similar flaw but
didn't get the same amount of bad press.
Nothing even close as bad. If you had decided to design a vehicle to
kill the occupants in a moderate rear end collision, the Gremlin would
be your starting point. They are about the only modern (FCVOM) car
using modern (FCVOM) gasoline that does have a mild chance of actual
fuel-air deflagration.
If my memory serves, didn't the engineers, for manufacturing cost and
weight savings make the top of the gas tank the bottom of the trunk
eliminating the firewall effect of the trunk floor found in most
designs? Thus, if in a collision, the fuel tank burst, it could spill
its burning contents directly into the passenger compartment?
Not the trunk floor, the rear deck. All there was was a sheet of
masonite and a couple retainer straps between the tank ans the
passenger comparment. If hit hard from behind, the gas tank tended to
flip right up into the passenger compartment, with a three-inch hole
where the filler tube used to be. The whole shebang got soaked with
fuel; sometimes something lit it.
Ah yes. I agree that the danger was exaggerated for dramatic effect
and financial gain by the ambulance chasing attorneys but the decision
to dispense with a metallic firewall was not well thought out.
--
Tim
Mac
2010-11-06 00:21:47 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
Post by Mac
Post by Tim
If my memory serves, didn't the engineers, for manufacturing cost and
weight savings make the top of the gas tank the bottom of the trunk
eliminating the firewall effect of the trunk floor found in most
designs? Thus, if in a collision, the fuel tank burst, it could spill
its burning contents directly into the passenger compartment?
Not the trunk floor, the rear deck. All there was was a sheet of
masonite and a couple retainer straps between the tank ans the
passenger comparment. If hit hard from behind, the gas tank tended to
flip right up into the passenger compartment, with a three-inch hole
where the filler tube used to be. The whole shebang got soaked with
fuel; sometimes something lit it.
Ah yes.
I agree that the danger was exaggerated for dramatic effect
and financial gain by the ambulance chasing attorneys
With whom? It would not appear to be with me.

No one went after AMC for questionable cases, and the cases I know of
that AMC lost it quite thoroughly deserved to. The Gremlin was a
needlessly unsafe design.

The Pinto was not, particularly. In fact, you can make a case that it
was the safest new vehicle in its market. If it was slightly prone to
burning in rear-enders, it was far less than a Gremlin, and it was
head-and-shoulders above the early Vegas.

But which one gets sued?
Post by Tim
I think but the decision
to dispense with a metallic firewall was not well thought out.
It wasn't "not well thought out," it was flat effin' stupid.
Tim
2010-11-06 19:51:20 UTC
Permalink
Post by Mac
Post by Tim
Post by Mac
Post by Tim
If my memory serves, didn't the engineers, for manufacturing cost and
weight savings make the top of the gas tank the bottom of the trunk
eliminating the firewall effect of the trunk floor found in most
designs? Thus, if in a collision, the fuel tank burst, it could spill
its burning contents directly into the passenger compartment?
Not the trunk floor, the rear deck. All there was was a sheet of
masonite and a couple retainer straps between the tank ans the
passenger comparment. If hit hard from behind, the gas tank tended to
flip right up into the passenger compartment, with a three-inch hole
where the filler tube used to be. The whole shebang got soaked with
fuel; sometimes something lit it.
Ah yes.
I agree that the danger was exaggerated for dramatic effect
and financial gain by the ambulance chasing attorneys
With whom? It would not appear to be with me.
Judges and juries?
Post by Mac
No one went after AMC for questionable cases, and the cases I know of
that AMC lost it quite thoroughly deserved to. The Gremlin was a
needlessly unsafe design.
The Pinto was not, particularly. In fact, you can make a case that it
was the safest new vehicle in its market. If it was slightly prone to
burning in rear-enders, it was far less than a Gremlin, and it was
head-and-shoulders above the early Vegas.
But which one gets sued?
Both, Atkins v. American Motors Corp., 335 So.2d 134 (Ala. 1976)
Post by Mac
Post by Tim
I think but the decision
to dispense with a metallic firewall was not well thought out.
It wasn't "not well thought out," it was flat effin' stupid.
"Not well thought out" includes that.
--
Tim
Don K
2010-11-05 20:59:53 UTC
Permalink
Post by Mac
Nothing even close as bad. If you had decided to design a vehicle to
kill the occupants in a moderate rear end collision, the Gremlin would
be your starting point. They are about the only modern (FCVOM) car
using modern (FCVOM) gasoline that does have a mild chance of actual
fuel-air deflagration.
I think you're confused the Gremlin with the Pinto.

Don
Mac
2010-11-01 23:16:53 UTC
Permalink
On Mon, 1 Nov 2010 22:51:43 +0000 (UTC), Howard Holey Hail
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies, and
somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything from blow
up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused by brushing them
off with your hands or patting them down with your blazer.
How effective are they, really?
Depends how you make them, and where you hit on the tank. Many
vehicles, even now, are vulnerable to flames in the engine
compartment, and big diesels and turbines draw a lot of air and haste
a lot of heat and exhaust' it's very hard to design something that
allows air flow but protects against liquid.
Post by Howard Holey Hail
If they're so great, why didn't armies
make catapults and shoot them by the gross back in 1942?
Short answer, they ain't so great. A bunch of gasoline and soap in a
glass bottle - selected for easy breakability - with a lit wick. Yeah,
that sounds like a fast track to success.
Post by Howard Holey Hail
Or maybe modify
them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs from his Shermans back in
1944?
They did, you know. Flamethrower tanks were part of most countries
army's armamentaria.
Post by Howard Holey Hail
And if they're so ineffective, why are they so famous?
Because they are a great symbol, actually used in real life, of the
mouse staring down the tiger. Here's this thing with several inches
of steel, a machine gun or three, and cannon, and you are going to
take it on with a wine bottle and some gasoline?
Post by Howard Holey Hail
Is the
straight dope that they worked well if you had the engineering expertise
of Soviet Russia
Jaysus. The molotov cocktail was based on the engineering expertise
of Finland. The name came as an extension of "molotov breadbaskets'"
the commies claimed their bombing runs of cities were relief for the
starving workers.

The gasoline grenade was one of the ways Finland bloodied the Red
Army's nose in the Winter War, not the other way around.
Greg Goss
2010-11-02 06:00:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by Mac
Depends how you make them, and where you hit on the tank. Many
vehicles, even now, are vulnerable to flames in the engine
compartment, and big diesels and turbines draw a lot of air and haste
a lot of heat and exhaust' it's very hard to design something that
allows air flow but protects against liquid.
And if you draw fuel in with your air, you get additional problems. I
remember reading about this for the Gulf platform explosion. When the
natural gas leak hit the diesel electricity generators, there was no
way to control the motors -- diesel is controled by controlling the
fuel injected into the motor. Include the fuel with the air, and the
motors cannot be controlled.

I'm not sure if this is an issue if a molotov is tossed without
igniting it and the gasoline is spilled across the engine intake.
--
Tomorrow is today already.
Greg Goss, 1989-01-27
bill van
2010-11-04 07:46:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by Greg Goss
I'm not sure if this is an issue if a molotov is tossed without
igniting it and the gasoline is spilled across the engine intake.
I'm just old enough to remember Vyacheslav Mikhailovich Molotov as a
recently faded world figure, so the phrase "if a molotov is tossed" kind
of grates on me. It puts in mind Gimli proclaiming, "Nobody tosses a
molotov."

Make it "a Molotov cocktail" or a gasoline bomb, a fire bomb, whatever.

(Doesn't matter a bit in conversation or on Usenet, of course. But if I
found that phrase in a story I was editing, I'd have to do something
about it.)

bill
Greg Goss
2010-11-05 00:34:56 UTC
Permalink
Post by bill van
(Doesn't matter a bit in conversation or on Usenet, of course. But if I
found that phrase in a story I was editing, I'd have to do something
about it.)
If you were editing me for publication, you would either have a
constitution of steel, or were committed long ago.
--
Tomorrow is today already.
Greg Goss, 1989-01-27
Richard R. Hershberger
2010-11-02 13:48:17 UTC
Permalink
Post by Les Albert
On Mon, 1 Nov 2010 22:51:43 +0000 (UTC), Howard Holey Hail
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies, and
somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything from blow
up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused by brushing them
off with your hands or patting them down with your blazer.
How effective are they, really?
Depends how you make them, and where you hit on the tank.  Many
vehicles, even now, are vulnerable to flames in the engine
compartment, and big diesels and turbines draw a lot of air and haste
a lot of heat and exhaust' it's very hard to design something that
allows air flow but protects against liquid.
Post by Howard Holey Hail
If they're so great, why didn't armies
make catapults and shoot them by the gross back in 1942?
Short answer, they ain't so great.  A bunch of gasoline and soap in a
glass bottle - selected for easy breakability - with a lit wick. Yeah,
that sounds like a fast track to success.
Somewhat longer answer: molotov cocktails are very short range. If
you can get that close to a tank, there are better weapons against
tanks. Think magnetic mines with shaped charges that you can slap on
the side of the passing tank. But those require a lot more
infrastructure to manufacture. So you go with the molotov cocktail if
you don't the resources for something better.

Either way, tanks preferred to operate with infantry support,
especially in close urban conditions. Driving your tank down a narrow
street of an unsecured city was a really bad idea.

As for catapults, the British had an infantry anti-tank weapon called
the PIAT (Projector, Infantry, Anti Tank) which was only slightly more
sophisticated. It was spring loaded to project a bomb, which had a
propellant charge which ignited once the bomb was clear of the
projector. The bomb itself had a shaped charge warhead. The idea
was, well, kind of dumb, and it was eventually replaced with bazookas.

Richard R. Hershberger
Mac
2010-11-02 14:59:55 UTC
Permalink
On Tue, 2 Nov 2010 06:48:17 -0700 (PDT), "Richard R. Hershberger"
Post by Richard R. Hershberger
Post by Les Albert
On Mon, 1 Nov 2010 22:51:43 +0000 (UTC), Howard Holey Hail
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies, and
somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything from blow
up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused by brushing them
off with your hands or patting them down with your blazer.
How effective are they, really?
Depends how you make them, and where you hit on the tank.  Many
vehicles, even now, are vulnerable to flames in the engine
compartment, and big diesels and turbines draw a lot of air and haste
a lot of heat and exhaust' it's very hard to design something that
allows air flow but protects against liquid.
Post by Howard Holey Hail
If they're so great, why didn't armies
make catapults and shoot them by the gross back in 1942?
Short answer, they ain't so great.  A bunch of gasoline and soap in a
glass bottle - selected for easy breakability - with a lit wick. Yeah,
that sounds like a fast track to success.
Somewhat longer answer: molotov cocktails are very short range. If
you can get that close to a tank, there are better weapons against
tanks. Think magnetic mines with shaped charges that you can slap on
the side of the passing tank. But those require a lot more
infrastructure to manufacture. So you go with the molotov cocktail if
you don't the resources for something better.
Aside from questions of effectiveness, a glass bottle full of
thickened flammables is much more dangerous to the user than
purpose-made anti-tank weapons, especially when not immediately
required. Walking around with a glass bottle of gasoline on you is
not conducive to peace of mind.
Post by Richard R. Hershberger
Either way, tanks preferred to operate with infantry support,
especially in close urban conditions. Driving your tank down a narrow
street of an unsecured city was a really bad idea.
As for catapults, the British had an infantry anti-tank weapon called
the PIAT (Projector, Infantry, Anti Tank) which was only slightly more
sophisticated. It was spring loaded to project a bomb,
That might imply that the spring pushed the projectile. It did not.
The PIAT was a spring-cocked spigot mortar. Spigot mortars are
analogous to rotary engines - the aircraft kind - in that the wrong
part moves. In a rotary engine, the crankshaft is fixed, and the
block rotates. In a spigot mortar, the barrel is what goes flying.
Each PIAT round had a small cylindrical chamber at the back end of the
projectile that fit around a rod. This was what formed the firing
chamber. The spring was simply a firing spring and recoil absorber. A
very stiff, awkward, heavy firing pin and rather ineffective recoil
absorber.

There have been several rocket-propelled or rocket assisted rounds
that used some low energy method to clear the firing tube or barrel;
the PIAT was not one of them.
Post by Richard R. Hershberger
which had a
propellant charge which ignited once the bomb was clear of the
projector. The bomb itself had a shaped charge warhead. The idea
was, well, kind of dumb, and it was eventually replaced with bazookas.
Dunno how dumb it was (as an idea, not the particular execution.)
Backblast has a lot of problems, even for a light rocket. The PIAT
could be fired from a small enclosed space without choking the crew or
giving away the position. That counts for a lot.
Richard R. Hershberger
2010-11-02 16:03:56 UTC
Permalink
Post by Mac
On Tue, 2 Nov 2010 06:48:17 -0700 (PDT), "Richard R. Hershberger"
Post by Les Albert
On Mon, 1 Nov 2010 22:51:43 +0000 (UTC), Howard Holey Hail
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies, and
somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything from blow
up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused by brushing them
off with your hands or patting them down with your blazer.
How effective are they, really?
Depends how you make them, and where you hit on the tank.  Many
vehicles, even now, are vulnerable to flames in the engine
compartment, and big diesels and turbines draw a lot of air and haste
a lot of heat and exhaust' it's very hard to design something that
allows air flow but protects against liquid.
Post by Howard Holey Hail
If they're so great, why didn't armies
make catapults and shoot them by the gross back in 1942?
Short answer, they ain't so great.  A bunch of gasoline and soap in a
glass bottle - selected for easy breakability - with a lit wick. Yeah,
that sounds like a fast track to success.
Somewhat longer answer: molotov cocktails are very short range.  If
you can get that close to a tank, there are better weapons against
tanks.  Think magnetic mines with shaped charges that you can slap on
the side of the passing tank.  But those require a lot more
infrastructure to manufacture.  So you go with the molotov cocktail if
you don't the resources for something better.
Aside from questions of effectiveness, a glass bottle full of
thickened flammables is much more dangerous to the user than
purpose-made anti-tank weapons, especially when not immediately
required.   Walking around with a glass bottle of gasoline on you is
not conducive to peace of mind.
Either way, tanks preferred to operate with infantry support,
especially in close urban conditions.  Driving your tank down a narrow
street of an unsecured city was a really bad idea.
As for catapults, the British had an infantry anti-tank weapon called
the PIAT (Projector, Infantry, Anti Tank) which was only slightly more
sophisticated.  It was spring loaded to project a bomb,
That might imply that the spring pushed the projectile.  It did not.
The PIAT was a spring-cocked spigot mortar.  Spigot mortars are
analogous to rotary engines - the aircraft kind - in that the wrong
part moves.  In a rotary engine, the crankshaft is fixed, and the
block rotates.  In a spigot mortar, the barrel is what goes flying.
Each PIAT round had a small cylindrical chamber at the back end of the
projectile that fit around a rod.  This was what formed the firing
chamber.  The spring was simply a firing spring and recoil absorber. A
very stiff, awkward, heavy firing pin and rather ineffective recoil
absorber.
There have been several rocket-propelled or rocket assisted rounds
that used some low energy method to clear the firing tube or barrel;
the PIAT was not one of them.
I stand corrected. I thought that was exactly what a PIAT did.
Post by Mac
which had a
propellant charge which ignited once the bomb was clear of the
projector.  The bomb itself had a shaped charge warhead.  The idea
was, well, kind of dumb, and it was eventually replaced with bazookas.
Dunno how dumb it was (as an idea, not the particular execution.)
Backblast has a lot of problems, even for a light rocket.  The PIAT
could be fired from a small enclosed space without choking the crew or
giving away the position.  That counts for a lot.
Given that the design was only in use a few years (albeit they were
exciting years) my guess is that the increased range of a bazooka was
judged worth the tradeoff.

Richard R. Hershberger
Mac
2010-11-02 16:36:26 UTC
Permalink
On Tue, 2 Nov 2010 09:03:56 -0700 (PDT), "Richard R. Hershberger"
Post by Richard R. Hershberger
Post by Mac
On Tue, 2 Nov 2010 06:48:17 -0700 (PDT), "Richard R. Hershberger"
Post by Richard R. Hershberger
which had a
propellant charge which ignited once the bomb was clear of the
projector.  The bomb itself had a shaped charge warhead.  The idea
was, well, kind of dumb, and it was eventually replaced with bazookas.
Dunno how dumb it was (as an idea, not the particular execution.)
Backblast has a lot of problems, even for a light rocket.  The PIAT
could be fired from a small enclosed space without choking the crew or
giving away the position.  That counts for a lot.
Given that the design was only in use a few years (albeit they were
exciting years) my guess is that the increased range of a bazooka was
judged worth the tradeoff.
I think that was part of it.

Another was the vicious recoil. The thing was a real
shoulder-thumper, and a major exception to the "little guy gets the
big weapon" rule.
Tim
2010-11-02 17:09:30 UTC
Permalink
Post by Les Albert
On Mon, 1 Nov 2010 22:51:43 +0000 (UTC), Howard Holey Hail
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies, and
somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything from blow
up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused by brushing them
off with your hands or patting them down with your blazer.
How effective are they, really?
Depends how you make them, and where you hit on the tank. Many
vehicles, even now, are vulnerable to flames in the engine
compartment, and big diesels and turbines draw a lot of air and haste
a lot of heat and exhaust' it's very hard to design something that
allows air flow but protects against liquid.
How vulnerable? I would think a diesel engine could withstand a fair
amount of fire and it would take an awfully lucky throw to get all of
the fuel from the Molotov cocktail into the engine compartment in the
first place. It could burn belts, wiring insulation and hoses but
eventually it is going to run out of fuel.

Do any tanks have fire suppression systems in their engine
compartments?
Post by Les Albert
Post by Howard Holey Hail
If they're so great, why didn't armies
make catapults and shoot them by the gross back in 1942?
Short answer, they ain't so great. A bunch of gasoline and soap in a
glass bottle - selected for easy breakability - with a lit wick. Yeah,
that sounds like a fast track to success.
Post by Howard Holey Hail
Or maybe modify
them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs from his Shermans back in
1944?
They did, you know. Flamethrower tanks were part of most countries
army's armamentaria.
Post by Howard Holey Hail
And if they're so ineffective, why are they so famous?
Because they are a great symbol, actually used in real life, of the
mouse staring down the tiger. Here's this thing with several inches
of steel, a machine gun or three, and cannon, and you are going to
take it on with a wine bottle and some gasoline?
It seems to me the best expected result would be to get enough burning
liquid into the crew quarters to force the crew to unbutton to get air
and expose themselves to small-arms fire or more Molotovs.
Post by Les Albert
Post by Howard Holey Hail
Is the
straight dope that they worked well if you had the engineering expertise
of Soviet Russia
Jaysus. The molotov cocktail was based on the engineering expertise
of Finland. The name came as an extension of "molotov breadbaskets'"
the commies claimed their bombing runs of cities were relief for the
starving workers.
The gasoline grenade was one of the ways Finland bloodied the Red
Army's nose in the Winter War, not the other way around.
--
Tim
Mac
2010-11-02 19:54:36 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim
Post by Les Albert
On Mon, 1 Nov 2010 22:51:43 +0000 (UTC), Howard Holey Hail
Depends how you make them, and where you hit on the tank. Many
vehicles, even now, are vulnerable to flames in the engine
compartment, and big diesels and turbines draw a lot of air and haste
a lot of heat and exhaust' it's very hard to design something that
allows air flow but protects against liquid.
How vulnerable?
For most modern first-line vehicles? Not very, at least for the first
few molotovs. You have baffle systems on most air intakes, fire
suppression systems, etc. Now, any particular design might have a
flaw; there were in the past, when I had to know about that sort of
thing, but I suspect they are fixed for any stuff still in service,
Post by Tim
I would think a diesel engine could withstand a fair
amount of fire and it would take an awfully lucky throw to get all of
the fuel from the Molotov cocktail into the engine compartment in the
first place. It could burn belts, wiring insulation and hoses but
eventually it is going to run out of fuel.
That's what you want to do. Burn belts and wires and hoses. Burn
enough of ''em, and the thing stops running, or a fuel line goes,
and, if you have the fire hot enough, it begins burning itself.

The designers aren't stupid; every rubber part that can be eliminated
is, and metal lines don't burn very well. Wires that might be
cheapish vinyl or rubber in other applications might use silicone
coverings instead...and so forth.
Post by Tim
Do any tanks have fire suppression systems in their engine
compartments?
Most do. Stuff breaks, though, and the third or 5th molotov might get
it once the halon (or water) is all gone.
Post by Tim
It seems to me the best expected result would be to get enough burning
liquid into the crew quarters to force the crew to unbutton to get air
and expose themselves to small-arms fire or more Molotovs.
Yeah, but 50 years of nuclear and chemical threat has put a lot of
emphasis on crew air protection. Again, you might get lucky, or
overwhelm a system, or catch an overheated crew not buttoned up fully.
Tim
2010-11-03 00:56:42 UTC
Permalink
Post by Mac
Post by Tim
Post by Les Albert
On Mon, 1 Nov 2010 22:51:43 +0000 (UTC), Howard Holey Hail
Depends how you make them, and where you hit on the tank. Many
vehicles, even now, are vulnerable to flames in the engine
compartment, and big diesels and turbines draw a lot of air and haste
a lot of heat and exhaust' it's very hard to design something that
allows air flow but protects against liquid.
How vulnerable?
For most modern first-line vehicles? Not very, at least for the first
few molotovs. You have baffle systems on most air intakes, fire
suppression systems, etc. Now, any particular design might have a
flaw; there were in the past, when I had to know about that sort of
thing, but I suspect they are fixed for any stuff still in service,
Post by Tim
I would think a diesel engine could withstand a fair
amount of fire and it would take an awfully lucky throw to get all of
the fuel from the Molotov cocktail into the engine compartment in the
first place. It could burn belts, wiring insulation and hoses but
eventually it is going to run out of fuel.
That's what you want to do. Burn belts and wires and hoses. Burn
enough of ''em, and the thing stops running, or a fuel line goes,
and, if you have the fire hot enough, it begins burning itself.
The designers aren't stupid; every rubber part that can be eliminated
is, and metal lines don't burn very well. Wires that might be
cheapish vinyl or rubber in other applications might use silicone
coverings instead...and so forth.
Post by Tim
Do any tanks have fire suppression systems in their engine
compartments?
Most do. Stuff breaks, though, and the third or 5th molotov might get
it once the halon (or water) is all gone.
Post by Tim
It seems to me the best expected result would be to get enough burning
liquid into the crew quarters to force the crew to unbutton to get air
and expose themselves to small-arms fire or more Molotovs.
Yeah, but 50 years of nuclear and chemical threat has put a lot of
emphasis on crew air protection. Again, you might get lucky, or
overwhelm a system, or catch an overheated crew not buttoned up fully.
I'd call it an act of desperation by people that had nothing better to
throw at them even back when tanks were a lot more vulnerable than
they are today.
--
Tim
Chowder Cold Curried Meal
2010-11-02 21:24:52 UTC
Permalink
Post by Les Albert
On Mon, 1 Nov 2010 22:51:43 +0000 (UTC), Howard Holey Hail
Or maybe modify them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs
from his Shermans back in 1944?
They did, you know. Flamethrower tanks were part of most countries
army's armamentaria.
Flamethrowers don't seem like exactly what I was thinking of, since they
don't let you shoot very far. I was wondering whether there was a long
range shell which caught stuff on fire. Poking around online it turns
out that the US Army didn't use glorified gasoline based shells in WWII,
but they did use a lot of white phosphorus shells to set stuff on fire.
(I'm sure any condescending militiary geeks will now roll their eyes and
say "boy, what's next, wonder what kind of fuel Tiger tanks used?")

What made white phosphorus the preferred stuff over gasoline? Better
burner? Safer to manufacture? Easier to put into shells? More stable?
Other stuff?
Mac
2010-11-02 21:43:02 UTC
Permalink
On Tue, 2 Nov 2010 21:24:52 +0000 (UTC), Chowder Cold Curried Meal
Post by Chowder Cold Curried Meal
Post by Les Albert
On Mon, 1 Nov 2010 22:51:43 +0000 (UTC), Howard Holey Hail
Or maybe modify them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs
from his Shermans back in 1944?
They did, you know. Flamethrower tanks were part of most countries
army's armamentaria.
Flamethrowers don't seem like exactly what I was thinking of, since they
don't let you shoot very far. I was wondering whether there was a long
range shell which caught stuff on fire. Poking around online it turns
out that the US Army didn't use glorified gasoline based shells in WWII,
but they did use a lot of white phosphorus shells to set stuff on fire.
(I'm sure any condescending militiary geeks will now roll their eyes and
say "boy, what's next, wonder what kind of fuel Tiger tanks used?")
What made white phosphorus the preferred stuff over gasoline? Better
burner? Safer to manufacture? Easier to put into shells? More stable?
Other stuff?
Amost all of the above. WP is used also as a marking shell. It makes
lots of fluffy white smoke, so you can see it night or day. Once it
starts burning, it prefers, strongly, not to stop. It is solid, so it
doesn't behave strangely in a spinning projectile. It is a floorwax
and a dessert topping.
Les Albert
2010-11-03 00:03:27 UTC
Permalink
On Tue, 2 Nov 2010 21:24:52 +0000 (UTC), Chowder Cold Curried Meal
Post by Chowder Cold Curried Meal
Post by Les Albert
On Mon, 1 Nov 2010 22:51:43 +0000 (UTC), Howard Holey Hail
Or maybe modify them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs
from his Shermans back in 1944?
They did, you know. Flamethrower tanks were part of most countries
army's armamentaria.
Flamethrowers don't seem like exactly what I was thinking of, since they
don't let you shoot very far. I was wondering whether there was a long
range shell which caught stuff on fire. Poking around online it turns
out that the US Army didn't use glorified gasoline based shells in WWII,
but they did use a lot of white phosphorus shells to set stuff on fire.
(I'm sure any condescending militiary geeks will now roll their eyes and
say "boy, what's next, wonder what kind of fuel Tiger tanks used?")
What made white phosphorus the preferred stuff over gasoline? Better
burner? Safer to manufacture? Easier to put into shells? More stable?
Other stuff?
Impossible to extinguish.

Les
Tim
2010-11-03 00:47:26 UTC
Permalink
On Tue, 2 Nov 2010 21:24:52 +0000 (UTC), Chowder Cold Curried Meal
Post by Chowder Cold Curried Meal
Post by Les Albert
On Mon, 1 Nov 2010 22:51:43 +0000 (UTC), Howard Holey Hail
Or maybe modify them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs
from his Shermans back in 1944?
They did, you know. Flamethrower tanks were part of most countries
army's armamentaria.
Flamethrowers don't seem like exactly what I was thinking of, since they
don't let you shoot very far.
There's a flamethrower tank named Beelzebub if IIRC in John Wayne's
"The Sands of Iwo Jima" that puts out a pretty respectable stream of
fire.
Post by Chowder Cold Curried Meal
I was wondering whether there was a long
range shell which caught stuff on fire. Poking around online it turns
out that the US Army didn't use glorified gasoline based shells in WWII,
but they did use a lot of white phosphorus shells to set stuff on fire.
(I'm sure any condescending militiary geeks will now roll their eyes and
say "boy, what's next, wonder what kind of fuel Tiger tanks used?")
What made white phosphorus the preferred stuff over gasoline Better
burner? Safer to manufacture? Easier to put into shells? More stable?
Other stuff?
The same weight of material burns a lot hotter, longer and is very
hard to extinguish. Another advantage is that it's pyrophoric and much
easier to light reliably.

Petroleum was pumped into caves in some places and lit to incinerate
the defenders, Iwo Jima being one.

Napalm: gasoline with naphthenic and palmitic acid to thicken it and
make it stick was used by the U.S. in large air dropped cylinders and
flamethrowers during WWI, WWII Korea and Viet Nam but I've never heard
of it being used in artillery rounds. It doesn't have nearly the
energy WP has by volume.
--
Tim
Reunite Gondwanaland (Mary Shafer)
2010-11-09 07:26:16 UTC
Permalink
On Tue, 2 Nov 2010 21:24:52 +0000 (UTC), Chowder Cold Curried Meal
Post by Chowder Cold Curried Meal
Post by Les Albert
On Mon, 1 Nov 2010 22:51:43 +0000 (UTC), Howard Holey Hail
Or maybe modify them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs
from his Shermans back in 1944?
They did, you know. Flamethrower tanks were part of most countries
army's armamentaria.
Flamethrowers don't seem like exactly what I was thinking of, since they
don't let you shoot very far. I was wondering whether there was a long
range shell which caught stuff on fire. Poking around online it turns
out that the US Army didn't use glorified gasoline based shells in WWII,
but they did use a lot of white phosphorus shells to set stuff on fire.
(I'm sure any condescending militiary geeks will now roll their eyes and
say "boy, what's next, wonder what kind of fuel Tiger tanks used?")
White phosphorus was also used in incendiary bombs, such as those
dropped on London by the Luftwaffe.
Post by Chowder Cold Curried Meal
What made white phosphorus the preferred stuff over gasoline? Better
burner? Safer to manufacture? Easier to put into shells? More stable?
Other stuff?
I don't know any of the answers, but I do know that the US was still
using Willy Pete in Vietnam. They also used jellied gasoline, napalm.
However, both were in bomb casings, shipped that way from the factory
and not filled on-site.

After the Forrestal fire, the USN stopped using avgas-based fuel
(JP-4) and switched to kerosene-based fuel (JP-5). (The USAF finally
gave up on JP-4 in the '90s and now everyone used JP-8.) I don't know
if they stopped using napalm at the same time.

Mary "JP-8 was part of the reason we stopped flying F-104s."
--
Mary Shafer Retired aerospace research engineer
We didn't just do weird stuff at Dryden, we wrote reports about it.
***@gmail.com or ***@qnet.com
Visit my blog at http://thedigitalknitter.blogspot.com/
Stan
2010-11-09 13:02:14 UTC
Permalink
Post by Reunite Gondwanaland (Mary Shafer)
I don't know any of the answers, but I do know that the US was still
using Willy Pete in Vietnam. They also used jellied gasoline, napalm.
However, both were in bomb casings, shipped that way from the factory
and not filled on-site.
After the Forrestal fire, the USN stopped using avgas-based fuel
(JP-4) and switched to kerosene-based fuel (JP-5). (The USAF finally
gave up on JP-4 in the '90s and now everyone used JP-8.) I don't know
if they stopped using napalm at the same time.
Mary "JP-8 was part of the reason we stopped flying F-104s."
Now the upcoming trend is to using Jet-A and additize in the field when
necessary. Easier availability. Less transport. Good for companies that
make the additive systems. What happened with the F-104?
--
Stan "like the one I work for" in NJ
Mac
2010-11-09 14:55:17 UTC
Permalink
Post by Reunite Gondwanaland (Mary Shafer)
I don't know any of the answers, but I do know that the US was still
using Willy Pete in Vietnam. They also used jellied gasoline, napalm.
However, both were in bomb casings, shipped that way from the factory
and not filled on-site.
After the Forrestal fire, the USN stopped using avgas-based fuel
(JP-4)
I think a "mostly" or a "partly" or "effectively" belongs in there,
no? JP-4 could be, roughly, half kerosene and half gasoline, although
it could be, depending on feedstocks, as much as 65% gas. If memory
serves, the specs would allow mogas, too, since the octane rating
wasn't critical. The specs could also be met with run-of-the-still
fractional distillation; if memory serves the Brits described theirs
that way. Either way, the actual spec is for a fuel with certain
testable properties, not for a manufacturing path.

Just so long as it didn't have the wrong additives. Lead sometimes
has interesting effects on turbine blades. That did in a lot of small
turbines for tactical power generation, and made the Stupid U-Packs
used for MUST inflatable hospitals even Stupider.
Snidely
2010-11-20 00:28:27 UTC
Permalink
Just so long as it didn't have the wrong additives.  Lead sometimes
has interesting effects on turbine blades.  That did in a lot of small
turbines for tactical power generation, and made the Stupid U-Packs
used for MUST inflatable hospitals even Stupider.
"[...] the results showed great differences in cavitation behavior
between water and JP-8 jet fuel, which is a complex mixture of more
than 228 hydrocarbons and additives, each with its own fluid
properties."

<http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101116093532.htm>

/dps

Xho Jingleheimerschmidt
2010-11-02 00:38:47 UTC
Permalink
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies, and
somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make documentaries.
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything from blow
up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused by brushing them
off with your hands or patting them down with your blazer.
Some people who got shot at by 30'06 had their heads explode, and some
just had bullets whiz harmlessly over their heads.
Post by Howard Holey Hail
How effective are they, really?
How effective are guns?
Post by Howard Holey Hail
If they're so great, why didn't armies
make catapults and shoot them by the gross back in 1942?
Some armies in 1942 had tanks, and things to shoot out of them.
Post by Howard Holey Hail
Or maybe modify
them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs from his Shermans back in
1944?
Sherman probably had other, better, things to shoot out of his tanks.
Post by Howard Holey Hail
And if they're so ineffective, why are they so famous? Is the
straight dope that they worked well if you had the engineering expertise
of Soviet Russia teaching people how to make them, but they weren't much
good in the hands of a typical radicalized 1969 Anthro major?
What was the radicalized 1969 Anthro major trying to accomplish?
Causing horrible pain and hideous disfigurement to innocent bystanders?

Xho
danny burstein
2010-11-02 04:57:18 UTC
Permalink
[ snippppppp]


check out p. 130 of the PDF scan of the classic Abbie Hoffman tome.

http://www.semantikon.com/StealThisBookbyAbbieHoffman.pdf
--
_____________________________________________________
Knowledge may be power, but communications is the key
***@panix.com
[to foil spammers, my address has been double rot-13 encoded]
Tim
2010-11-02 07:43:33 UTC
Permalink
On Tue, 2 Nov 2010 04:57:18 +0000 (UTC), danny burstein
Post by danny burstein
[ snippppppp]
check out p. 130 of the PDF scan of the classic Abbie Hoffman tome.
http://www.semantikon.com/StealThisBookbyAbbieHoffman.pdf
Hey, isn't that book copyrighted?
--
Tim
Lee Ayrton
2010-11-05 22:21:36 UTC
Permalink
Post by danny burstein
[ snippppppp]
check out p. 130 of the PDF scan of the classic Abbie Hoffman tome.
http://www.semantikon.com/StealThisBookbyAbbieHoffman.pdf
Ah. So my recollection wasn't too far astray. Thanks.
Shawn Wilson
2010-11-03 22:22:19 UTC
Permalink
Post by Howard Holey Hail
My only experience with Molotov Cocktails is what I see in movies, and
somehow I get the feeling that Hollywood doesn't just make documentaries.
You are correct about this...
Post by Howard Holey Hail
I've seen Molotov Cocktails in the movies and on TV do everything from blow
up tanks to spray cute little flames which can be doused by brushing them
off with your hands or patting them down with your blazer.
How effective are they, really?  If they're so great, why didn't armies
make catapults and shoot them by the gross back in 1942?
Worse than every anti-tank weapon but your bare hands. If you have
ANYTHING else you are better off using it. Finland did not have
anything else. Also, molotov cocktails can be easily imporvised from
materials availble from civilian sources. Anti-tank guns, mines and
grenades not so much.





 Or maybe modify
Post by Howard Holey Hail
them so that Patton could shoot gasoline bombs from his Shermans back in
1944?  And if they're so ineffective, why are they so famous?  Is the
straight dope that they worked well if you had  the engineering expertise
of Soviet Russia teaching people how to make them, but they weren't much
good in the hands of a typical radicalized 1969 Anthro major?  
Large part of the difference, definitely. Professional experienced
soldier using a designed (if improvised in manufacture) weapon under
certain condition against specific weaknesses versus some illiterate
jackass.
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