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Old 30-Aug-2008, 01:34 AM
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The physics of Brass knuckles?

The physics of Brass knuckles?

Reading Terry Pratchett's 'Night Watch' got me wondering:

How do knuckle dusters work?

I mean in terms of the basic 'force= mass*acceleration' sort of equations.

Does the metal provide a smaller point of contact then ordinary knuckles? Does the rigidity of the metal prevent some of the force of the impact being absorbed by the user's joint structure?
Maybe they also give a confidence boost to the user?
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Old 30-Aug-2008, 03:20 AM
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Area of impact has a huge effect on damage done. If you do 200 lbs. psi (per square inch) of force spread over 1 inch you will do all that 200 lbs right there. But if you halve the surface contact, you effectively double the power in that area.

Metal also does not absorb impact the same way that your body does. Muscle, fat, ligament and even bone flex a certain bit under impact, diffusing your power into yourself.

Another factor is that actually punching someone in the head with your fist actually does a fair amount of damage to you, too. With brass knuckles, you can put all of your effort into it with less worry about injuring yourself.

Hope that helps...
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