Have you ever dropped a cartridge and had the primer detonate

Discussion in 'Cop Talk' started by jacquejet, Mar 16, 2010.

  1. jacquejet

    jacquejet

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    Did a requal today and one of the instructors mentioned that while it was unlikely, it was possible to drop a cartridge on the range, especially if there was gravel on the ground, and have the primer ignite if the cartridge landed on one of the rocks just right.

    Has anyone ever had that happen?
     
  2. Hack

    Hack Crazy CO Gold Member

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    Np, but that is always a remote possibility. All it takes is an adequate striker to pin the cartridge.
     

  3. m2hmghb

    m2hmghb

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    I have heard of it happening, but never to me.
     
  4. Rabbi

    Rabbi The Bombdiggity Lifetime Member

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    Yes, it happened to me but not like you would think. A spent case ejecting from a 223 out of a full auto SiG 552 landed just right in a 50 round box of ammo (rounds in the tray, out of the box, primers up) it touched off a round.

    It skeeeeered the wee-wee out of me. Lesson learned. I will not shoot with live ammo uncovered.
     
  5. Hack

    Hack Crazy CO Gold Member

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    I remember this one time when someone was throwing trash in the burn barrel. I think whomever it was forgot a few live rounds. We were in duck and cover mode for a little bit. But, nothing striker initiated, so to speak.
     
  6. j-glock22

    j-glock22

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    No. I'd say its a very remote and I stress remote possibility.
     
  7. lawman800

    lawman800 Juris Glocktor

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    It just keeps getting better, don't it?
    It can happen with the right combination of force + angle of attack of the surface to the primer. There is no magic to touching off a round. The force of the pin causes the primer to initiate the chemical reaction to light the powder... which means, any force that is similar to a firing pin strike will do the same. The primer doesn't know the difference.

    That's how the VC did so well with the toe poppers and how we did so well with the same in Bosnia with the 12 gauge shells and a nail buried in the dirt.
     
  8. Broke Hoss

    Broke Hoss

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    We had 1 years ago, back in the 38 spl days, at a qualification day. It didn't do much. They didn't recover the bullet but found the casing. It was blown out on the sides kinda like a rough bannana.

    I know of a teenage (STEW PED!) anti personell/frag experiment involving a 12 gauge shell a BB & a strip of engineer's tape that worked on the same principle. Word of caution: throw for distance more than height. Damn I'm lucky to have made it to adulthood with the dumb stuff I pulled.
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2010
  9. Captain38

    Captain38

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    I say, "No, I haven't".
     
  10. razdog76

    razdog76 Heavy Mettle

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    I know that it is possible to detonate rimfire cartridges if a loaded, detachable revolver cylinder is dropped.

    It seems like that would be difficult to do with most ammunition. I wouldn't think the cartridge would have enough mass or acceleration during the fall to dent the primer enough.

    Rabbi?
     
  11. lawman800

    lawman800 Juris Glocktor

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    It just keeps getting better, don't it?
    Depends on the primer.
     
  12. Deployment Solu

    Deployment Solu Kydex Crafter

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    I was doing a qualification with a .38/.357 S7W model 19 and upon dumping the cylinder (striking the ejector rod) to do a speed load, one of the live rounds in the cylinder was propelled with enough force down to the mat(which had used brass casings on it)and it hit the edge of a spent casing at just the right angle, that it ignited. We found the bullet and the ruptured casing. I had a small rip in a pants leg where the a piece of the casing hit it. No injuries, but a bang when you weren't expecting one is startling!!!!
     
  13. Fed Five Oh

    Fed Five Oh NRA Member

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    Just got an advisory the other day that one of our F.I.'s in another State was emptying .40's out of their boxes into a ammo can when 2 rounds went bang.

    Brass shrapnel to the face, but was wearing eye protection. Not serious injury.
     
  14. tudor128

    tudor128

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    Our state's training academy now requires everyone to wear eye protection when loading magazines because of a round being dropped and discharging. FWIW, we have to shoot the Federal lead-free on their range and the instructors speculated its primers may be more sensitive than those in other training or duty ammunition.
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2010
  15. Panzergrenadier1979

    Panzergrenadier1979 Keystone Cop

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    On our first day of firearms instruction at the police academy, our instructor passed around two casings that had detonated when dropped at our range. The the bullets were gone and the brass was split down the sides.
     
  16. bharen

    bharen

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    I've dropped/dumped hundreds of loose centerfire rounds over the years with nothing happening. Mostly 5.56 and 9mm. Sure, maybe, possibly, under the right conditions a primer strike could happen. You could get hit by a meteorite under the right conditions, too.
     
  17. Elvis269

    Elvis269 alive and well

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    Happened last year to a trooper at the range. She was finishing up a qual and dropped her Sig P226 magazine into a bucket that had several loose .357 rounds in it. Sharp corner on the sig magazine struck a primer just right and BOOM!! :wow:
     
  18. DaBigBR

    DaBigBR No Infidels!

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    I would be more concerned about having an "ejector detonation" where the shooter tries to catch a manually ejected live round and manages to smack the back of it with the ejector or some other hard, pointy surface in the gun.
     
  19. mdhandyman

    mdhandyman

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    It's never happend to me, but I do think about it every time one slip's out of my hand, an it does make me pucker alittle bit. :embarassed:
     
  20. COBRA90GT

    COBRA90GT

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    Interesting topic; never seen it happen in person.....yet. Hope to never experience it.