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Spoilers for Mando: The Spies

Paz Viszla’s machine gun overheats for the first time in eternity. It’s never overheated before, and he had plenty of time to let the barrel cool off when the Mandalorians are stuck between blast doors. Why, when the doors open again and Paz Viszla goes out to blast the Jetpack-Stormtroopers, does his gun overheat?

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    Have we seen him fire his cannon for that amount of time onscreen before? IIRC he was pretty much holding down the trigger for a lot longer than in previous episodes. IRL machine guns, cooling the barrel off properly takes more than just a few moments after prolonged firing (many have quick-change barrels because of this) and that's with real bullets, not blaster bolts. The barrels can and will heat up red-hot and deform with sufficient fire, potentially to the point of severe failure and ammo cook-off. Apr 15, 2023 at 1:33
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    This looked like a most reasonable thing in this whole dumb scene. Also "this character’s"? Really? Would you people quit with these lame "spoiler titles"? His death can be considered a spoiler, overheating a gun, not really.
    – Mithoron
    Apr 15, 2023 at 14:21
  • “he had plenty of time to let the barrel cool off when the Mandalorians are stuck between blast doors” — a small space packed with 20 Mandalorian mid-battle? Sure, must have been freezing in there. Apr 15, 2023 at 16:34
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    I suspect the Mandalorian have to dedicate all their cooling system resources to themselves, thanks to those metal helmets they can’t take off. Apr 17, 2023 at 0:00
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    @BlueSkinandGlowingRedEyes, there may ba a rapid cooling system, but a repeater is an even more rapid heating system. Also, they needed an excuse to get rid of the repeater so that the Praetorian Guard could actually eliminate him. Otherwise he would have mowed them down like he did the Dark Troopers. Apr 17, 2023 at 3:23

2 Answers 2

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The plasma bolts fired by blasters are hot. That's an inherent quality of plasma. His blaster cannon had no time to cool down. He had been firing and firing and firing. Metal, by definition, heats up quickly with less energy than, say, water (there are some exceptions, such as beskar, but beskar is an exception to everything). While metal used on blasters would have a higher tolerance than, say, aluminum, even that has its limits, and that plasma has a lot of heat. So the simple answer is thermal transfer from the plasma bolts to the blaster cannon.

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  • Just a note on Beskar; it is seen to heat up when a lightsaber is held against it. Also, the gun overheating is much the same as real-life rapid fire weapons, it's probably one of the reasons why Vizla's weapon had multiple barrels in the first place. Apr 17, 2023 at 6:18
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It seems to be a characteristic of miniguns - and this is specifically a Z-6. I didn't see Heavy (of clone wars)'s minigun overheating though it seems to be fired in bursts. On the other hand the variant that the imperial heavy storm troopers have on Jedi Fallen Order seem to overheat more quickly (though they also have a shield in front, that might generate heat).

I'd guess that previously, we've seen Paz fire in relatively short bursts in low intensity combat. This also how we see the clones using it. It is a weapon meant for short bursts of extreme fire power.

In this battle against the imperial commandos, he's basically got it firing non stop for an extended period of time with no cool down.

This is similar to real world machine guns which often fire fast enough their barrels can overheat and be replaced . Basically - he pushed the gun hard in an emergency and it couldn't take it. He was going to sacrifice himself anyway, and knew he'd die so no point in holding back.

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  • Out of curiosity, do you have any sources for the Fallen Order stuff? Apr 17, 2023 at 13:12
  • Unfortunately, its entirely from playing the game, though the wookiepedia page refers to it. Apr 17, 2023 at 13:16
  • By any chance, would there be a YouTube video about this, @Journeyman Geek? Apr 17, 2023 at 13:18
  • youtube.com/watch?v=Zbad5-6Y2tU shows you exactly how fast they overheat. Which also leads me to wonder if the mandalorian version with the big umbilical is better somehow Apr 17, 2023 at 13:26

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