Sharps Rifle.....1500 yard kill?

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by meta, May 3, 2004.

  1. meta

    meta Member

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    I've found myself in an argument over whether there is any truth to the legend that Billy Dixon killed an indian at 1538 yards with a Sharps .50-90 rifle. I know the trajectory is absurd, and I know the chances of hitting remote at best, but can anyone run this over ballistically and give me the nuts and bolts? AKA: DUBUNK THIS BS. Here is the article:
    http://the_montanan.tripod.com/Sharps.html
     
  2. BountyHunter

    BountyHunter Writers Guild

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    Hope you have some salt and pepper handy for that crow.

    Go to "Precision Shooting at 1000 Yards by Dave Brennan" and sold by Sinclair International www.sinclairintl.com. One of the last stories is about them "replicating the famous Billie Dixon shot".

    Do not have the article in front of me, but if I remember right they put 3-5 shots on plywood siloutte of horse and rider at the distances quoted in the story.

    Also the Confederates used a muzzleloading Whitworth rifle to get 1000-2000 yard hits.

    Not common but skilled marksman have pulled it off.

    BH
     

  3. ScottB

    ScottB Well-Known Member

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    Topic re-birth!!!

    This is just to good. Was looking for this information the other day....just wandered around the internet and never found any evidence one way or the other....
    I look around on the link provide above, but found nothing....wierd?




    Be a great show for the MythBusters!!!





    Scott
     
  4. Long Time Long Ranger

    Long Time Long Ranger Well-Known Member

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    I saw a good documentary program concerning that. The indians stopped at a spot he had been practicing with his rifle so he knew where to hold. Best they could determine from historical info from both indians and settlers, he made the shot and hit I think the arm and then the leg of a cheif. I think the first shot broke his arm.
     
  5. RMinMT

    RMinMT Member

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    Mythbusters would shoot the ground 100 feet in front of them and say its not possible. Needless to say I take any mythbusters info with a pound of salt. Reason is the one show I saw and they couldnt shoot a 9mm into a 38 special cylinder from the front. They concluded it is simply not possible because they said the 9mm is bigger than a .38 anyways :p. Which it is not.


    Anyways I read an article in Shooting times I believe it was that concluded it was most likely a lucky hit although in a 3 day siege where 2000 plus rounds were fired anything could happen. The researchers also figured 300 fps was needed to be lethal for the big bullets in that fight and at 1500 yards the big bullets still had more than enough power to kill. I believe they wrote the max bullet travel for those big guns was something like 3500 yards.
     
  6. Kevin Thomas

    Kevin Thomas Well-Known Member

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    Several years back I did some work for LASD consulting on a homicide case in which a woman was killed at about 950 yards. The gun in question was a short barreled (2" or 4", can't recall for sure) .38 Special. They'd arrested a guy for discharging a firearm, and shortly thereafter had another (separate) call involving a victim of a shooting about a half mile away. The gun was loaded with military 38 Special 130 grain FMJs, a fairly unusual ammo we didn't run across too often. Guess what it was that they popped out of the victim? The initial question (where I got pulled in) was, "is this possible?" Working the trajectory and the exterior ballistics of the round, yeah, it was possible. They got a ballistic match when they examined the bullet and the guy went to prison for it. In that case it wasn't an intentional shot on his part, but she was just in the wrong place at the wrong time.

    Billy Dixon made an intentional shot, but I do recall an interview with him years later where he readily acknowledged that there was a fair bit of luck involved in the shot. Still, pretty impressive.

    Hey, weird things happen!

    Kevin Thomas
    Lapua USA
     
  7. FEENIX

    FEENIX Well-Known Member

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  8. bigngreen

    bigngreen Well-Known Member

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    I never get tired of watching Dave shoot!! I think as a shooting community were so broad that people don't know that accurately shooting long range is something we've been doing well before telescopic sights, smokeless powder and the 338 Lapua.
     
  9. RMinMT

    RMinMT Member

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    That video is sweet....thanks for sharing.

    I always wondered how it was even possible to shoot that far cause the front bead would cover many feet, but the front is an open cirle. That is awesome.
     
  10. Kevin Thomas

    Kevin Thomas Well-Known Member

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    Feenix,

    I'd have to verify this, but I don't believe that's a 1760 yard shot. The video is shot on the High Power Silhouette range at the Whittington Ceter in Raton, NM. Been there dozens of times and I've shot that very same buffalo on several occasions. I seem to recall that the buffalo is more like 1200-1300 yards, something like that. Impressive couple of shots, no problem there, but I don't believe it's as far as the clip reported it to be.

    Kevin Thomas
    Lapua USA
     
  11. shorty

    shorty Well-Known Member

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    That fight happened at Adobe Walls (Dixon later homesteaded on that sight).
    About two weeks after that day an Army survey crew came out and measured the shot and it was true...almost a mile 1749 yards or some such.

    Later, an Indian who was reportedly there, said that the shot knocked the guy off his horse but didn't kill him.
     
  12. FEENIX

    FEENIX Well-Known Member

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    Kevin,

    The first time I saw this video the claim was 1760 yards. However, I read some of the posts that accompanied the video and says ...

    "Its a 45-100 sharps and that's Dave Gullo the actual Range is 1123 yards at Raton NM."

    You're right ... and an amazing shot nonetheless.

    Ed
     
  13. Kevin Thomas

    Kevin Thomas Well-Known Member

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    Didn't remember the exact distance, but that sounds a lot more like it. They used to give out little pins for those who hit the buffalo, don't know if they still do or not. Great range though, and if you've never been there, you owe it to yourself. As an NRA member, you're a part owner, and should take advantage of the facilities. No matter what discipline you shoot, they've got a world class range for it there. There's also a great variety of game, including muleys, pronghorns (everywhere), elk, bear, mountian lion and turkey. Shot lots of matches there over the years but never done any hunting on the property. Ought to do that some time . . .lightbulb!

    Kevin Thomas
    Lapua USA
     
  14. FEENIX

    FEENIX Well-Known Member

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    I hunted NM when I was stationed at Kirtland AFB in 1996-2000 but never made it to the range in Raton.

    Ed