Machine Gun Vs. Airplane Propeller In Slow Motion

Josh Welch

Bullet being fired through an airplane propellerHave you ever been watching those old movies of the first world war and wondered how the airplane pilots were able to shoot machine guns through the propeller without hitting it? 

Well, in the beginning they were just extra careful and tried to not use the forward machine gun very often. 

Eventually the French and Germans developed a synchronization gear (or gun synchronizer) that is attached to the armament of a single-engined-type aircraft so it can fire through the arc of its spinning propeller without bullets striking the blades. 

By the second world war jet propulsion and wing mounted guns made the synchronization gears obsolete. 

Gav and Dan, The Slow Mo Guys, went out to the desert with a gun and a propeller with a working synchronization gear and managed to get some very good slow motion videos. 

Check out the video below and let us know what you think in the comments!