For example there's this car chase, where a part of the T-1000 stays in the car, but John throws it out and it flows back into the terminator. What would have happened if this part was hidden somewhere, thrown into the sea or something like that? Would the T-1000 just lose weight and become smaller? Would he also get weaker? Or dumber? What percentage would you have to take away to make him completely harmless?

This question is even more intriguing considering the 'Hasta la vista, baby' scene. What if the T-800 would take a decent part of the frozen particles and carry them away?

Edit: While some aspects of the question How are the T-1000's programming and memory stored? are somewhat similar, it's not a duplicate. That question asks what happens, when some blobs are lost. I'm asking how many blobs you would have to take away to destroy a liquid metal terminator?

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    The dupe answer explains that the parts have a 14 kilometer range to reform, but not what would happen if those parts were farther or how much loss can a main body suffer before it had to reform. What if john threw that piece down a ditch or into lava.
    – user16696
    Jun 26, 2015 at 22:42
  • Well, if every piece of it is functional and independent, you couldn't right? The most you could do is make small enough pieces that it couldn't form a viable threat, or it could only function in a "find more to merge with" form. Problem is defining that point; I doubt anyone would blink if all a T-1000 could do is form a ground spike or caltrop thing, but if it can flow enough to climb on/in someone and still impale them with minimal mass, then you're screwed no matter what.
    – Radhil
    Jun 26, 2015 at 23:44
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    Is anyone else imagining John Connor being pursued by an adorable, barbie-sized T-1000?
    – SteveCav
    Jul 7, 2015 at 6:44

1 Answer 1


The short answer is that we don't know for certain, but we can at least place a lower and an upper bound; If the T-1000s mass is reduced to somewhere between 2% and 50% it won't be able to maintain its singular form

Lower bound

The film's official novelisation gives us an overview of what happens if you split the T-1000 into two pieces (e.g. 50%):

If any section were parted, the separated halves would revert to metal poly-alloy. The only default command it had in molecular memory was to find the main mass again and rejoin it. Each molecule had a range of fourteen kilometers. And the blasted apart sections of the T-1000 were much closer than that.

Upper Bound

We see a few percent (at least 2%) of the T-1000 removed without the main mass reverting to a liquid metal blob during its encounter with the Connors:

The T-1000, blissfully unaware of anything except the target’s projected escape route, glanced down. The liquid metal blob on the asphalt began to shudder, then elongate, stretching like a liquid finger until it touched Officer Austin’s “shoe,” flowing into it, rejoining the main mass.

  • I've often thought that the T1000 would have to maintain hollow sections to mimic larger targets (such as Officer Austin). If it lost a bit of mass then it would just be able to hollow itself out a little more so the external representation remains intact.
    – Jane S
    Nov 4, 2015 at 23:47
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    @JaneS - Yes, it's indicated in the script and the book that becoming the security guard places a strain on it. While we could expect it to grow/shrink by a few percent, it would appear that maintaining a dramatically hollow structure (for an extended period of time) is simply beyond its immediate capabilities.
    – Valorum
    Nov 4, 2015 at 23:51

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