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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone!
I hear some people have often wondered about the damage the .577/450 round actually did to enemy soldiers when they were hit.. (If you have already seen accounts of the injuries then there is not much point reading on). But for those who don't know, some soldiers have recorded wounds zulus sustained in 1879.
-Headshots are particularly shocking, some soldiers after the battle of rorke's drift discovered some zulus with a perfect 45 caliber entrance hole in their forehead, and then have had the entire back of their head blown out and I quote all that was left was "like a mask"!
-Another surprising thing is in some instances a bullet could actually enter a zulu, (of course doing considerable damage, slightly mushrooming making the wound even bigger as it travels through), and go straight out the other side, then enter ANOTHER zulu (mushrooming even further making a much bigger wound than the original) and even sometimes the bullet would enter a THIRD zulu!(Now it is like a .75 cal musket hitting them, resulting in MASSIVE wounds) and only then would it not leave the third body. Admittedly the bullet didn't often hit a third zulu, but there have been accounts!

Of course the Martini Henry did several bayonets - I only have reports from the 1876 Pattern bayonet (The 21" bladed one that fits onto the Mk.1,2,3 and the Mk.4 A & B pattern).
-Because of the suction of the wound and the bayonet, sometimes zulus wouldn't actually come off the bayonet, so soldiers would either have to kick them off the end- or perhaps even fire a round into them so they would be flung off!
-One recorded event someone said that he saw one soldier using his bayonet 'like a pitchfork' lifting up zulus then throwing them back down so they came off his bayonet.
- One of Henry Hook's accounts from Rorke's Drift says he actually saw a zulu, kind of in mid air; as the bayonet had been stuck through him and into the ground by a soldier, who then just left the zulu stuck on the rifles bayonet!

I hope this was informational to you.
 

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If you have ever tryed to lift a practice bag with a bayonet attached to a rifle,you will quickly discount the story of using a bayonet on Zulus like a pich fork,I have used bayonets to stick pigs wyle hunting with dogs and my bigest suprise was how easly the bayonet went in and came out
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Of course I have never seen someone bayonet a zulu and lift him up, I was just quoting accounts I have read.
 

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There are accounts of people being pitched off bayonets, from all times, and all wars. Especially if the pitchee, is smaller in stature. Take Colonel Lewis Millet, during his famous bayonet charge in Korea. Not only did he pitch an enemy soldier into the air, he then caught him with his bayonet, and then pitched him over his shoulder. He learned of that later, from his men. He had no recollection of it. It's not the same, as a practice bag, or pig. Lots of adrenaline pumping in combat. Adrenaline can cause super human strength. I know a very slim, wirey man, who backed over his 2 year old son, with like a '69 Delta 88. When he got out of the car, the rear wheel was on the boys hips. Dad picked the car up with one hand, and pulled his son out, with the other. We all know that ain't possible, but it happened.
 

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I am - reluctant seems suitable - to call BS on people who were "there" recounting what they saw. I know a lot of "soldier stories" are just that. Been there, heard them, some. Can think of at lest a couple that I know for sure are BS. Others are - astonishing but true.

The wound descriptions fit well with the animal shooting tests the British performed before they adopted the "small-bore" (.450 IS small next to a .577), to be sure it could reliably put horses down. I believe them.
 

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-Because of the suction of the wound and the bayonet, sometimes zulus wouldn't actually come off the bayonet, so soldiers would either have to kick them off the end- or perhaps even fire a round into them so they would be flung off!
I aint letting no one get close enough to stick if I still have a round in the chamber!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

OK - I know they were out-numberd by about 5,000 -- so I suppose I might have missed one and let him get close enough to stick.......:rolleyes:
 

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When I imagine the bayonet being used at Rorke’s Drift I see the Zulus at times getting up to and on top of the barricade. Could it be that a charging Zulu could be impaled on a bayonet and with their forward momentum be “pole vaulted” over the heads of the troops? This would of course require the Martini butt to be in contact with a firm surface. All rather gory but interesting.
 

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I think that would be posible,if the atacker was impailed from obove the only way to free the bayonet would be to try to spin him behind you,this is not lifting though and if you have seen the size of the avrage Zulu you to would dought the reports of them being piched
 

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It might just be that the guy behind him was pushing him foreward because there were so many in a tight cluster pushing foreward not to bad for the guy behind him but would hate to be the one up front being pushed into that bayonet. Seems like it makes sense.
 

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Anyone hit anywhere by a 577-450 is going to fall down
How about the front of the left ear lobe? I jest. I’ve seen what a 577-45 can do to wood and a wet telephone directory. You are right John.
Re the body pitching. I doubt the Martini could handle the stress of lifting a Zulu through an 180degre arc.
However going from 90 to 180 with the help of gravity might well be possible. Safe bet that the socket bayonet would not remain straight if it had to support the weight of a body. Somehow I can’t see Myth busters tackling this one.
 

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How about the front of the left ear lobe? I jest. I’ve seen what a 577-45 can do to wood and a wet telephone directory. You are right John.
Re the body pitching. I doubt the Martini could handle the stress of lifting a Zulu through an 180degre arc.
However going from 90 to 180 with the help of gravity might well be possible. Safe bet that the socket bayonet would not remain straight if it had to support the weight of a body. Somehow I can’t see Myth busters tackling this one.
Aw, why not? I'm sure somebody like Mugabe would provide them a venue and people to try it on....
 

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The rifle, and user might be able to accomplish this feat. Dunno about the bayonet. It is well documented, that some of the contract bayonets of the period were, how do you say... Junk. I've seen period cartoons of Zulus, and Fuzzy Wuzzies, being tickled with corkscrew like bayonets. And others of them being used as neck ties, and folding like accordions during drill. Fortunately, the powers that be got a handle on things. Eventually.
 

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Hello everyone!
I hear some people have often wondered about the damage the .577/450 round actually did to enemy soldiers when they were hit.. (If you have already seen accounts of the injuries then there is not much point reading on). But for those who don't know, some soldiers have recorded wounds zulus sustained in 1879.
-Headshots are particularly shocking, some soldiers after the battle of rorke's drift discovered some zulus with a perfect 45 caliber entrance hole in their forehead, and then have had the entire back of their head blown out and I quote all that was left was "like a mask"! ..
Kipling put it rather well in "The Grave of the Hundred Dead"

...A Snider squibbed in the jungle,
Somebody laughed and fled,
And the men of the First Shikaris
Picked up their Subaltern dead,
With a big blue mark in his forehead
And the back blown out of his head
...

Not a Martini, but similar ballistics.

(I guess no tomato soup for lunch for me today.)

:) Stuart
 

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Bayonets at Rorke's Drift

One of the glaring faults of the movie "Zulu", is that it shows the barricades built on level ground. While some of them were, a large part were built on top of a rocky ledge which meant that the British soldiers were not stabbing "out" so much as "down". The Zulus were trying to climb up & over with very little visible to stab at. Especially once the Hospital was abandoned & the soldiers fell back to the shortened cross wall.

The South wall was largly free of cover & so after the initial rush as the Zulus appeared from the South (running around the Oskarberg Terraces), the majority off the attacks came from the scrub/brush/orchard standing just yards from the North West of the hospital. I hope I got the compass points right (I am going from memory only).

Peter
(in Ontario)
 

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Anyone hit anywhere by a 577-450 is going to fall down
hi to all. first time here. have shot a few roos with the martini and,yes,you hit them anywhere and they dont move. i read somewhere that after the british troops were issued with the .303 rounds in Egypt, there were a number of complaints that they didnt have the stopping power against the dervish warriors that their Egyptian allies (still armed with the Martini) had. i believe it though i guess the higher rate of fire made up for that as evidenced at omdurman.
 

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Well.. also by then - the Horse cavalry charge wasn't a big part of tactics like it was 50 or 100 years earlier.... I don't think it's any coincidence that 30 caliber rifles were nearly unanimously adopted worldwide around the same time as the trench warfare and end of the giant cavalry charge.... The 303 was plenty effective against men....

That giant 700g or 500g slug is really good against a 1,000lb horse - especially an armored horse.... but you really don't need that sort of thing against a man...

Of course.. I think if I had the opportunity to shoot my MH Mk IV at a roo or a pig - I would take it... I would love to see what that 520g slug would do...

Thanks
 

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I shot a Kudu with a 480 grain slug at 50 yards. It was quartering away from me, I hit it right in front of the left hip. The bullet passed through the intestines, paunch, liver, lung, and right shoulder. The distance the bullet traveled was measure witha tape measure and was 54 inches.

When hit the kudu took a few steps forward and just stood the fore about a minute before it fell over dead.



A second kudu was shot from about 20 yards broadside with instructions to hit it behind the shoulder through the chest. It dropped like it was poleaxed.
 
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