AR Kaboooom!

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    Cornmastah
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    AR Kaboooom!

    Post by Cornmastah on Fri Oct 14, 2016 3:16 am

    I was at the local shop during my lunch break and overheard a guy asking the gun counter guys if there was anything that could be salvaged from his ar15 in his gun case.  He proceeded to take out an AR that was blown to pieces.  It was nuts.  NOTHING was salvageable, it was all damaged except maybe the adjustable stock.  He said the rifle just blew up when he fired it (using some of his reloads of course), but he and the others were not injured at all.  Lucky man.  My guess is that the only thing that could cause an AR to blow up like that would be a full case of pistol powder instead of rifle powder.  Maybe he was reloading pistols and forgot to change to the rifle powder or maybe he accidentally mixed in some pistol powder or something.  I wish I could have taken a picture of the pile of pieces.

    Just a reminder to be careful when reloading so something like that doesn't happen to you.
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    Tennessee Jed
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    Re: AR Kaboooom!

    Post by Tennessee Jed on Fri Oct 14, 2016 11:41 am

    Interesting. I am hearing more stories about people blowing up their AR's recently.

    There have been a few recent stories at my range about AR kabooms. I've not witnessed any, so this is all heresay. However, it's getting mildly concerning.

    At my range, no one was hurt, but it's become common enough that the range officers know what to expect. I guess typically the magazine gets blown straight down out of the rifle, sometimes bits of the bolt blow out both the bottom and through the ejection port, and sometimes the ejection port gets torn up.

    The range officers think the kabooms arose from cheap Russian ammo. (But that's often their excuse for everything).

    I had an interesting experience with my AR about a month ago. Shooting at a range on the bench with my handloads, I squeezed the trigger and got 2 shots for one squeeze. I must have not seated the primer deep enough on the second round, and when the bolt slammed shut it touched off the next round. That will wake you right up. Lesson learned.

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    Charlie Foxtrot
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    Re: AR Kaboooom!

    Post by Charlie Foxtrot on Fri Oct 14, 2016 12:27 pm


    Corn and Jed, good words. I'm very careful reloading -- and I'm sure I'm not careful enough.  

    Jed, CCI makes military grade, AR specific primers: CCI #41. They're harder to prevent the slam fires associated with many semi-autos. Load a live round at the range using the bolt release, I'll betcha you'll see a slight indent of the firing pin hitting the primer. Sobering.
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    Tennessee Jed
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    Re: AR Kaboooom!

    Post by Tennessee Jed on Fri Oct 14, 2016 12:31 pm

    Thanks CF. I plan on getting some of those military grade primers.

    I've seen that tiny little primer dent on a round chambered, then ejected without being shot. It is a little creepy. And that's also why whenever I chamber a round in an AR I am triple 100% certain that the muzzle is pointed at something I don't mind shooting.

    I've never had a round fire in the AR from just being chambered, but I think it's just a matter of time until it happens.
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    Tennessee Jed
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    Re: AR Kaboooom!

    Post by Tennessee Jed on Fri Oct 14, 2016 12:34 pm

    And while I still really like my AR, this is one of a few reasons why it will never replace my all time favorite rifle . . .



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    Cornmastah
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    Re: AR Kaboooom!

    Post by Cornmastah on Fri Oct 14, 2016 1:29 pm

    Tennessee Jed wrote:And while I still really like my AR, this is one of a few reasons why it will never replace my all time favorite rifle . . .




    I totally get it. My rossi 92 in 45 colt is still one of my fav's. I'm not sure if I mentioned this somewhere else, but earlier this year I ended up getting a used r92 in 45 colt for my wife for her anniversary present. I had asked her what gun she would want if she could pick anything, and she responded by describing my r92 (a 16" barreled 92 in 45 colt with a leather wrap and a rear peep sight). So I got her a used one, slicked it up, replaced the factory rear sight with a peep sight, and gave it to her. She loves it too--it is her favorite gun.

    On the topic of ar15's blowing up, I was talking with a friend who does 3 gun matches. He said that he saw 2 ar15's blow up in one day--both from the same people's reloads. He figured that it had to have been a full charge of pistol powder in the rifle case with how it blew up.

    I have reloaded and shot several thousands of rounds and I've never had a gun blow up on me and hope to never have that experience. It was, however, a good reminder to me on how important it is to pay attention to detail and not reload when I am sleepy.

    One of the things which I do when I reload (which is slower, but gives me more confidence in my reloads) is that I give my powder charges a visual "once over inspection" under a light to check for anything unusual like a light charge or one that looks higher than the others. I also weigh every 10th powder charge or 25th depending on the type of powder I am using. I've found that I don't crank out as many rounds per hour on my progressive press as other people, but my quality and consistency is high, and I can depend on my reloads.
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    Tennessee Jed
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    Re: AR Kaboooom!

    Post by Tennessee Jed on Fri Oct 14, 2016 1:44 pm

    I do the same visual check on every round and occasional re-weighing of charges, and ESPECIALLY with rifle rounds.

    I also have a ritual that when I'm handloading, there is only one powder cannister in the room. I hope that prevents me from putting wrong powder in the wrong load. So far so good.

    It's an interesting concept, accidentally putting pistol powder in a rifle case. I guess 26.5 grains of Bullseye in a 5.56 case would stand a reasonable chance of re-arranging an AR, and maybe the shooter too.

    Outside of that, I cannot imagine what these people are doing to cause these kabooms.

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