The myth for this particular clip was that guns never run out of ammo in the movies. Right away, I thought: I wonder how many bullets he shot? BRING IT ON.
First, I am going to find the fire rate of Arnold’s weapon. Oh, I know I could look it up on Wikipedia or something – but I am not going to do that. I am going to determine the fire rate from the clip.
After capturing an audio segment where the gun in question is fired, I opened the clip in audacity, a free audio editor. Here is what that would look like:
First, I could simply count each one of those little peaks (that corresponds to a shot) and divide by the time – but what fun would that be? Instead, I will use Audacity’s ability to take the fourier transform of the sound. For a segment of the clip (the middle of the clip looks like it skips a shot or something) I get the following spectrum:
I assume the peak around 11 Hz is the gun. This would give a fire rate of 11 bullets per second. Maybe this isn’t quite right, but close enough.
If I know the fire rate (I will call this f in bullets per second) and the time the gun is fired (Δt), then the number of fired bullets would be:
To get Δt, I am going to look at the video in Tracker Video. Why? Because this is a great way to get more precise time measurements than if I had used Quicktime or something. Here is what I get:
- Δt1 = 3.0 seconds
- Δt2 = 2.8 seconds
- Δt3 = 4.4 seconds
- Δt4 = 4.2 seconds
- Δt5 = 0.3 seconds
- Δt6 = 3.7 seconds
- Δt7 = 4.3 seconds
Those were the times I recorded while he was using his first gun. I admit that this is not quite right. Watching it again, he sometimes would pause momentarily in the middle of a “burst”. Also, I tried to be very conservative with my start and end times for the burst. Anyway, out of respect, I will take off 1 second of time. Just to make sure I am fair. This gives a shooting time of 21.7 seconds. How many bullets?
That there is a whole bunch of bullets. Yes, I grant you that maybe he changed magazines at some point – but they never clearly showed that. Also, for comparison, an AK-47 has a magazine up to 30 rounds (according to Wikipedia). The M-16 also looks like it could hold a maximum of 30 rounds (I am not including the drum-feed systems because it is clear he is not using one of those).
If the Commando did indeed change magazines, he would have to do so 8 times to shoot that many bullets. That would also be pretty heavy to carry that many rounds.
Why did I just do this calculation? I don’t know.