'We sold everything to do this and lost it in 20 minutes'

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jimisbell, I see your point, but on closer examination of the photo, I am not really having any trouble with it.
Looks like the bullet came in at an oblique angle, about 35 degrees to the surface. It would have gone through the bark layer, and it did some damage to the first four growth rings as it penetrated them.
The hole in the bark, which we can't see, would have been covered over in a year or two.
The tree then had more than a few years to repair some of the penetration damage.
All new growth rings formed after the incident (from the back of the bullet out to the bark) would be flawless.

I do see some deformation (compression) of the wood in front of the bullet, and some evidence of tearing behind it. If a machine punch can go straight through 1/2" steel plate with no trouble, I have no difficulty imagining a high velocity bullet would not disturb the wood grain too much on either side as it went in.

Would have been neat to see it go in, in slow motion.
All this sawmill talk reminds me of the Aussie sawmill worker in a busy noisy pub at Buladelah,in the NSW north logging and sawmilling region. Ordering 5 beers but only displaying 3 fingers.
Best guess, comparing growth rings and extrapolating, I doubt if the tree was much over, if, 50 years old.
Bullet, without further disturbance, I cannot eliminate the possibility of a mini ball but I lean towards a round nose colt .45 or perhaps a .50 cal, neither hand cast, because of the copper jacket.
I never saw or shot a copper jacketed .58 Zouave mini ball. Yup, in my 20s and 30s I cast and shot the .58 cal round ball and mini ball black powered rifle.
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About 35 years ago I was at Judd Furniture in Dundas, Ontario, looking to buy a tree slab coffee table. They had a beautiful black walnut dining table on display, but not for sale. When I asked the owner for the story behind this table, he pointed out a perfectly round, silvery grey object embedded in its surface, that had revealed itself unexpectedly when they took a slice off the trunk with the bandsaw. "When we counted the growth rings from the outside back to the resting place of that little lump the band saw had cut in half, we arrived at the year 1812. The old walnut tree had been growing on the riverbank at Queenston Heights, Niagara."
That table was a piece of history!
Please don't use the phrase "typical millennials." There are many smart, hard-working young people in this world. Spacex is almost exclusively a company made up of millennials and look at what they did this week. Let alone almost every member of the military, every professional athlete, every Olympian, and probably the people that designed and built the hardware and software you're using right now.

"Lazy, coddled millennials" is a meme that needs to die right now.

Agreed! Was no one on this forum young and stupid once?
"Was no one on this forum young and stupid once?"

When I was young I never THOUGHT I was stupid even once.
Hire the young: get them while they still know everything!

BTW, I’ve shot a fair amount of pistol rounds into oak and walnut trees and never had one penetrate. We used to tack our targets to big trunked trees all the time. I was mostly shooting 9mm and hand loaded 45 long Colt at 44 Magnum velocity. Also some 25 Tokarev in a Broomhandle Mauser, even fully jacketed ball just bounced off the Cambrian layer under the bark. 22lr didn’t penetrate the bark IIRC. The one time I actually tried to get a round to penetrate, I was only about 10 to 12 feet away and the flattened slug bounced off and hit me in the leg.....left a pretty good bruise too!
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