## Re: The "BUT DRAGONS!" Fallacy

Originally Posted by smcmike
As you say, you are using random information off the internet. Very random, particularly considering that neither of them has very much at all to do with the question you posed.
Sorry, but it's hard to find any exact information for "How hard would you have to throw the least-throwable possible weapon you could wield for it to deal as much damage as six greatsword swings to each of six people in a 30-foot line and how big a nuclear explosion would this cause in the proceedings?"

Spoiler: This turns into a physics rant, which I promise is vaguely related.
But okay. How much energy does a bullet have? I've no idea how reliable this is, because "How much energy does a bullet have?" isn't actually a question that Googles well. An AK-47 has 1527 "ftlb" of energy, which is about 2070 joules. A trained cyclist can produce about 400 watts of mechanical power, so if we suppose that you're giving your Maul (because you can throw anything you can wield, it can even be a Large maul, but that's getting to the point of deliberately trying to make it unrealistic) about 5 times as much energy as a human could give it in a second, in less than a second, using a weaker body part, then you'll make it go a fraction of the same speed. See, that rifle bullet weighs about 4.2 grams (Come to think of it, e=mv2ing that would probably be a better answer for the energy exerted by the rifle - it's about twice as much as the other one, weighing in just shy of 4000 joules). You're throwing a weapon that's about 2000 times as heavy, and then some. Now, like I just said, e=mv2, so that means we can multiply up the amount of energy you have to give it by 2000, and then another 2 because we have a better energy estimate, meaning that you are operating at about 20,000 times peak human capacity.

But it gets worse.

A lot worse.

A bullet practically cannot go through more than one person. The flesh resistance (that's a thing now. It's a bit like air resistance, only bigger) is just too much. This makes sense, because it's almost impossible to shoot someone who's underwater because the water is just too heavy. Now, air resistance we can ignore, but flesh resistance is way more. Anyway, so we have to multiply the amount of energy by about 6, because that's how many people it has to go through, but we'll be generous and say it can go through one-and-a-fifth people, so you are operating at 100,000 times peak human capacity.

Now, the force due to friction is a function of the cross-sectional area of the object. I highly doubt I'll get the cross-sectional area of a maul anywhere, but for a bullet, it's in the region of 0.2-1.6... somethings. He doesn't give units, but I'm going to say that's square cm because that sounds likely. We'll call it 1. Finding the XSA of a maul is harder, but wikipedia shows me a picture of a 20 lb sledgehammer, while this is a 12 lb spike maul, so I have a vague frame of reference. I'm going to guess the number of bullets to a spike maul is about 120, so let's say that bullets to 20lb hammers is about 200. This means that you are operating at 200,000,000 times peak human capacity.

Oh, but it gets worse.

Let's convert back from times peak human capacity to joules one moment, which involves multiplying by 400 to get 800,000,000,000, or 8E11. That's the equivalent of 200 tons of TNT. Google searching "https://www.google.co.uk/?gfe_rd=cr&ei=K3IIVrzvO5T98wevhYTABg&gws_rd=ssl#q= 800%2C000%2C000%2C000+joules" gets you a word doc claiming that cars use that much energy in a year. That's not each. That's every car in existence, each year. v=root(e/m), so we're having a maul travelling at almost exactly 3E5 ms-1, which is neat. But that's not mach 48, or whatever piddly number I was coming up with earlier. That's mach eight hundred seventy nine. That's about 1% of c. That is about 1% of c. That is an utterly ludicrous speed.

This maul's ultimate tensile strength is about double that of human skin. Not only does it fail to survive impact, it fails to survive being thrown. You don't even finish swinging it by the time that the impulse on the handle, combined with the head's zero momentum holding the hammer back, tears the maul, and your own arm, to shreds.

You wanna use accurate numbers? It gets worse with accurate numbers.

Incidentally, I have indeed disengaged from the rest of the argument because this is more fun.