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I’ve had two, which changed my mind about ammo. My first was with my brother-in-law’s Ruger 10-22 rifle when I was at their double-wide trailer in the sand hills east of our town, I was probably 13, maybe 14 years old and had a jack rabbit in mind to stalk! My Bro-in-law had left a couple of boxes of 22LR ammo that he got from a friend that were from what was then an East European country that was part of the Soviet Steel Curtain, so I was suspicious to begin with. Anyway, alone I told my sister I was heading to the hills to find my rabbit and did. I spied one and fired a shot, only to be stunned with a burned hand and an exploded magazine on the ground, which I picked up and hustled back to report. My Bro-in-law showed up and in the small storage/shop building, we pulled the bullets out of the shells and some had almost zero powder and others were packed so heavy, it’s a wonder a slug could have been pushed in. We buried them all in the sand hill behind the house and he was out of a rifle until he divorced my sister and that was a long time ago.

The other was when I was already signed up to join the Navy and until I was to report, I was still working at the Western Auto store as a salesman. My good friend, an older Army Viet Nam vet who was shakey about my decision to join the service (even though I was already registered for the draft), we took a couple of guns in the store safe that had sat there for years, never sold and I now wonder the brand, but we thought it a good idea to take one and go shoot it, clean it, put it back in the safe, no one would know the better. Oddly enough, we went to the river bottom west of Gadsden AZ and who did we find? My dad and our German Shepherds just getting away from people. The semi-auto, high shined pistol, it lasted for exactly 4 rounds until it completely fell apart in my hand, YIKES! We found the parts, literally using the metal detector my dad had in the old truck in case he wanted to do some coin hunting while he was out. We pieced it together, put it in the box and never said a word about it. I went in the Navy, my older friend moved to San Antonio, the big boss of a Western Auto store of his own, in his home state in fact, but sadly died of cancer before I could ever hook up with him again, although I do have contact with his wife.

As to my former brother-in-law, in 2007, I had the unfortunate task of suddenly having my two older sisters living with my wife and I because they had nowhere else to go, not cool. As crazy as it sounds, after nearly 40 years, my one sister and the Ruger rifle guy had a renewed fling and he popped in and out of my home for a couple of months, I asked about the rifle and he told me it never worked right after the blow up and he sold it. I was working then and made good money and I was also buying and acquiring guns in trade by bulk. I came across a brand new Ruger 10-22 for less than $150 bucks, got it and gave it to my old friend to replace my blowing his up, he was stunned to say the least! We both agreed that we’d never think of going out to simply kill a Jack Rabbit for sport, never eating them, of course it’d be near impossible to find them now in that environment as we both knew.

Blow up guns, any experiences?
 

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Stacy, if you can remember that far back, I blew up a model 14, and that brought me here. I had a squib, the bullet stayed in the barrel until I screwed up and blew it up. When it was over the last shot I got off the bullet was going so slow I watched it go down range and bounce off the wood backed target I had set up. It took me about an hour to finally find that bullet. It is posted in the pics below. For me, I was lucky the barrel didn't burst, because I was high up on a mountain that afternoon, and I was roughly 2 hours from the nearest hospital. Had I been injured I more than likely wouldn't be here to tell the story. Thankfully S & W produced a very strong barrel, that only bulged, instead of blowing apart. It was caused by the nickel casings not being prepped or checked for failure properly before reloading them. They were a friends reloads, and I made a bad assumption that he knew what he was doing. His lack of control taught me never to trust somebody else's reloaded ammo. The second gun that blew up was a brand new Jimenez 9mm pistol. I bought it for 50 bucks. I loaded it up at the range, pulled the trigger, and the slide split in half leaving the front inch or so hanging on the barrel, and the back part coming completely off the frame and nearly into my face when it broke off. I did get my money back for that pistol the next day.

When I originally posted my story about the model 14 you were the first member here to welcome me and introduce me to the forum. I've enjoyed being here and the acquaintances I've made over the years.
Above all, you are one of the best members I've stayed close to, following your lives with Brandon and the grandchildren.

So here are a couple photos of that unfortunate day, and the barrel, with blown out casings as well. I still have the bulged barrel, the bullet I recovered, and all of those casings. A strong reminder just how important ammo control is critical.
488146


488147
 

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Never had one exactly "blow up" but a few months ago my Ruger LC9 fired out of battery and it blew the side out of the case. More or less a partial case head separation. The vented pressure launched the extractor, extractor plunger and plunger spring (the parts that retain the extractor in the slide) into the unknown.
 

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I had one 22 rifle where the chamber got dirty and the rear of the shell blew off. Gunsmith friend had an experience with Aguilla shotgun Shells. He fired and I was behind him loading my gun for next station. Heard a really loud blast and found his thumb and small part of hand burned. Took him to hospital and outside of some significant bruising and the two burns he was alright. Did blow the chamber in the barrel up like in the cartoons. We were lucky as could have been much worse for both of us. Aguilla determined they had an overcharged shell and did pay for his Medical and a new shotgun. They also issued recall as there were a few more incidences I guess. That happened as was just beginning to reload so really taught me to never vary and no distractions.
The 22 was a 10/22 but had used some Tula ammo and just was such dirty ammo would not let the cartridge fully seat. Fortunately no damage to gun but glad was 22 cal. Did have a Dud in my 627 that was listening and caught it.It was Remington factory loads. Good thread as does emphasize the use of our safety equipment at the range.
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Grearchecker, Gregory, gomenasai, my friend, I did not remember this ugly event, but more the fact you had a K-frame shooter you were pleased with! Look, in those days, I was actually a working big shot overseeing a statewide force of folks, I was dealing with many irons in the fire back then, I'm sorry for my drifting memory today! I do remember those cool holsters and belts I hope you still have! :)
 

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I do remember those cool holsters and belts I hope you still have! :)
BC2, Yes, I still have all of those holsters and belts. That Lawrence set you gave me is used all the time. It travels with my Model14, everywhere it goes.
Thanks for the great gift, and memories.
 
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Nothing so exciting but I did have a slide fly off one of the P232's. The lock lever wasn't properly engaged.
Pretty hilarious in the moment.
 
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I witnessed a M109-selfpropelled 155MM Howitzer firing a [email protected] mission light up and severely injure (2) crew members with burns & concussion wounds from a failure of the breach block to fully rotate and lock up in place. It was later found that the breach block was incorrectly reassembled during maintenance procedures.
 

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I guess things that go bang sometimes "KaBoom"...

I have been lucky and never had something malfunction to the point of this kind of damage, but others at our club have. A couple have donated the evidence to our teaching committee. It helps drive home the part of the basic pistol class about misfires, squibs and hangfires.

One of these teaching "props" is a M1911a1 barrel that we had cutaway, showing about 4 projectiles stacked, one behind the other, behind the initial squib. How that gun frame and slide survived still amazes me, but they were either loaded soft for BullsEye shooting or were missing powder completely... How the shooter kept pulling the trigger does puzzle me.
 
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I had a squib that I didn't realize till the next round seemed strange. The BHP's slide was stuck in place from the bulged barrel. I contacted Aguila basically to let them know I had a bad round, and they offered to replace the gun if I provided documentation (photos, etc.) They sent me a check for the price of a Tisas Regent, since that's the only BHP still in production. I spent that and added a few buck for a pristine 1973 T series that appeared to be unfired, being sold locally, then bought a new barrel, recoil spring, and slide release for my '87 and put it back into service with no issues. Unsticking the slide was quite a job but I did it without damaging it.
 

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Stacy, if you can remember that far back, I blew up a model 14, and that brought me here. I had a squib, the bullet stayed in the barrel until I screwed up and blew it up. When it was over the last shot I got off the bullet was going so slow I watched it go down range and bounce off the wood backed target I had set up. It took me about an hour to finally find that bullet. It is posted in the pics below. For me, I was lucky the barrel didn't burst, because I was high up on a mountain that afternoon, and I was roughly 2 hours from the nearest hospital. Had I been injured I more than likely wouldn't be here to tell the story. Thankfully S & W produced a very strong barrel, that only bulged, instead of blowing apart. It was caused by the nickel casings not being prepped or checked for failure properly before reloading them. They were a friends reloads, and I made a bad assumption that he knew what he was doing. His lack of control taught me never to trust somebody else's reloaded ammo. The second gun that blew up was a brand new Jimenez 9mm pistol. I bought it for 50 bucks. I loaded it up at the range, pulled the trigger, and the slide split in half leaving the front inch or so hanging on the barrel, and the back part coming completely off the frame and nearly into my face when it broke off. I did get my money back for that pistol the next day.

When I originally posted my story about the model 14 you were the first member here to welcome me and introduce me to the forum. I've enjoyed being here and the acquaintances I've made over the years.
Above all, you are one of the best members I've stayed close to, following your lives with Brandon and the grandchildren.

So here are a couple photos of that unfortunate day, and the barrel, with blown out casings as well. I still have the bulged barrel, the bullet I recovered, and all of those casings. A strong reminder just how important ammo control is critical.
View attachment 488146

View attachment 488147
Next time you stop by, bring it along and I'll remove it for you. I've done that quite a few times in the past. Couple ways, one, the arbor press and a long enough section of drill rod. The other way is a fill the barrel with water, load a bulletless casing with powder, seal the end with hot wax, point the firearm muzzle down vertically clamped in a secure mount (I use my adjustable saw horse table, with a string on the trigger, and discharge it. The water acts like a hydraulic ram with the charge pushing the squib out of the barrel and there is no damage incurred.

Did it that way many times too. Not to my own guns, but customers.
 

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I will say that 'I've found the fire' in more than one bolt action rifle in the past. I tend to load with muzzle velocity and downrange accuracy and my loading regimen consists of determining the best bullet jump (from the rifling lands) to attain the best grouping and then increasing the propellant charge until I observe brass wipe on the bolt face or cratered primer, or both but sometimes I can push it to 'having the fire come out' of the cross drilled receiver holes (which are in every modern sporting rifle) as an outlet for an overcharge without experiencing blowback down the bolt raceways and in your face.

My rule of thumb is never faster (MV) than 3000 fps. Over 3000 FPS, land erosion becomes pronounced and barrel life is shortened considerable.

Interestingly, I've found with 'factory ammo' propellant charges can be all over the spectrum as far as MV goes, why I only shoot MY handloads and probably why the group I hunt with only shoots them as well. I'm very exact in what I load, how I jump bullets and my prep. I'm a one shot, one kill' person, always have been.
 

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For the record, I did replace the barrel on the revolver, and everything is running perfectly. Now, I ALWAYS count bullet holes every time I pull the trigger. If in doubt drop the cylinder or slide and visually verify the condition of the barrel for obstructions.
 

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SIG P220, bought new, at ~200 rounds, frame split and it stung like the dickens. Apparently caused by some metallurgy issues SIG was having at the time.
 

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Had a Grendel P10 "crunch" apart in my hands while I was firing it, maybe half-way through the magazine. Didn't hurt me, it was toast... Oh, did I mention it wasn't mine? (Fortunately, he was standing right there...)
 

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I had a new Glock 43 blow up on the 3rd shot using factory ammo. Unsupported chamber issue. I wrote it up here & was called everything but human by the Glock fanfreaks. I'll never shoot another *&^%$#@! Glock, besides having the ergonomics of a 2x4 they are responsible for the term "Glock kaboom".
 

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Been there, done that. Found all the parts and the gun was GTG. I use a cartridge gauge in all my semi-auto loads now.
Never had one exactly "blow up" but a few months ago my Ruger LC9 fired out of battery and it blew the side out of the case. More or less a partial case head separation. The vented pressure launched the extractor, extractor plunger and plunger spring (the parts that retain the extractor in the slide) into the unknown.
 

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Been there, done that. Found all the parts and the gun was GTG. I use a cartridge gauge in all my semi-auto loads now.
Do you gauge new ammo? The round that ruptured and blew out the extractor on mine was out of a fresh box of Speer Lawman 115gr - not a reload.

It was in the middle of a string of semi-rapid fire and I suspect I rode the trigger enough that the sear released before it was fully back into battery. Something it shouldn't have done, but it did. Afterward I was able to get it to fire a primed empty case with the slide held approximately 3/16" out of battery. Like I said, something it shouldn't have been able to do - but it did.

Ruger didn't tell me exactly what was wrong with it, they just said that to repair it would require a replacement slide - which they didn't have since it was a first gen hammer-fired version and all they have left are the newer striker-fired slides. So it was unrepairable. They took good care of me by giving me a generous credit towards a new gun instead.
 
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