One of the advantages of precision shooting is that it gives you the nerve to risk your expensive video camera down at ground zero.

The first of these vids. is a little dark and it may be difficult to discern one of our  “blue” bolts dropping out of the sky.  If you allow your eye to relax on the sky in the area that the incoming action is occurring,  it will all become clear if you play it on loop for a dozen times or so.  (If you are looking for Hollywood theatrics in your falling ballista bolts, this is all going to be profoundly underwhelming for you.  It is, however, absolutely real.)

Click for vid.  20121107150929(2)

Click for vid.  20121107150929(5)

Click for vid.  20121107150929(4)

Range of the furthest shot is 884 yards, the second shot falls ten feet shorter and is in line with it.  The third shot, again lines up, but falls shorter at the 880 yard mark.  The projectile is a 28 1/2 ” long, Dura style and weighs 340 grams. Muzzle velocity is averaging 362 fps.  There was a 3 mph headwind with today’s shooting.

The  middle video picked up the streak of the incoming bolt in two locations in this next snapshot.   A classic example of  plunging fire.  Don’t see anything? Click on the photo to enlarge.

As near as I can measure it,  when we plaster these videos up on the big screen, it looks like these whistling darts are coming in at a 60 degree angle.   Rome’s enemies must have hugged their walls pretty close.  This kind of unstoppable and unpredictable attack must have made the besieged feel vulnerable and edgy.  Basic psy/ops type stuff.  If you can’t go out into the open for fear of fast moving pointy things falling on your head,  it makes it hard to get your chores done.  And if your chores go undone ……

…..well, that’s always the beginning of the end,  isn’t it?

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