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Thread: NRA Safety Notice e-mail regarding hand loaded ammunition

  1. #1
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    NRA Safety Notice e-mail regarding hand loaded ammunition

    Does anyone have any info on what actually happened? Hope they were not too inured.

    Does anyone know how an under-charged case causes problems like this?

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    SAFETY NOTICE

    Incidents involving hand loaded ammunition

    The NRA recognises that hand loaded ammunition may perform more consistently than factory rounds and is widely used by members striving to improve marksmanship; also it may be the only source of ammunition for historic or uncommon calibres. A large number of hand loaded rounds are fired every year without incident throughout the UK.

    Unfortunately ammunition incidents do occur and in recent weeks two members have sustained significant injuries as a result of breech explosions. Technical investigations are ongoing; the initial evidence suggests the underlying cause in both incidents was a failure of hand loaded ammunition. In one incident it appears that an under charged case caused a gross pressure spike. The likely cause was inadequate control and assurance process in the assembly of the ammunition.

    The NRA advises that hand loaded ammunition should only be produced in accordance with up to date load data published by a reputable source. Equipment including presses, measuring tools etc. should only be used in accordance with the manufacturers operating instructions. Training is important; the NRA provides a hand loading course with an emphasis on safety.

    Members are reminded that a key element of the NRA Safe Shooting System is Safe Equipment; the individual is responsible for ensuring that his/her firearm is serviceable and the combination of firearm and ammunition is safe. The NRA Rules Appendix VI detail the responsibilities of individual shooters using hand loaded ammunition.

    The 2021 NRA Handbook is available to download here https://nra.org.uk/all-downloads/nra-handbooks/

  2. #2
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    I have seen it happen twice and I know of one occasion with a club member.

    The two I witnessed both had under charged ammo left in the magazine, both were from objects blocking the powder measure (one was the little foam seal from the top of the powder bottle, I think the other was due to bridging in the Dillon powder measure tube which is often solved with polishing).

    The last one was a member trying to make reduced loads to subsonic by just reducing the powder. It got to a point where the charge just exploded.

    All these were on AR style rifles and with the exception of magazines and bolt groups there was no other major damage. The brass flowed in all instances and the bolt had to be eased out of two (the other actually stripped the carrier and half cycled the action before the pressure left the rifle via the magazine and the eject port).

    With something like a 223 there is more danger from under filling than over filling, it is hard to get enough powder of a suitable type in the case to cause a problem but a half charge is dangerous.
    Good deals with: Muskett, Dreben, roger.kerry, TALL, Helidave1, Chelseablue, Leeroy7031, Mousemann, pnuk, Practical, NEWFI, HOOGS, Webb22, lazybones1416 and deanw5262 among others. Thanks Guys.

  3. #3
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    Is this due to there being too much 'void space' in the under dosed cartridge then? I've seen mention of people using fillers to fill out a cartridge case.

  4. #4
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    its likely going to be due to using too little of the wrong powder, I happily load 7.5x55 with 16grains of unique rather than the normal 48-50 grns (which in itself is nowhere near a full case)
    fillers can actually cause a lot of problems with bottlenecked cartidges, and as long as you are not using black powder shouldnt be necessary
    You Cannot Reason People Out of Something They Were Not Reasoned Into
    "Politicians like to panic, they need activity. It is their substitute for achievement" Sir Humphry Appleby

  5. #5
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    PS after the debacle of the issue GGG ammo at the last couple of Imperial meetings I would hope the NRA have taken their own advice
    You Cannot Reason People Out of Something They Were Not Reasoned Into
    "Politicians like to panic, they need activity. It is their substitute for achievement" Sir Humphry Appleby

  6. #6
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    Overload or underload

    Seen several incidents of overcharging of cartridges and/or using the wrong powder... guy loaded 40gns of N110 instead of 40 gns of N140... the explosion was spectacular.. never seen a pressure problem with too little powder.. reduced loads using fast shotgun powders are the norm on many ranges and I have never seen a pressure problem.. reduced loads with slow rifle powders might be the problem but nobody seems to understand the problem.

    amc577

  7. #7
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    I can see the temptation to use a smaller quantity of a different powder - particularly for plinking or where you need to under-load due to energy limitations at a particular range.

  8. #8
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    Found this in the Vihavouri website:

    https://www.vihtavuori.com/wp-conten...NG_ROW_www.pdf



  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by amc577 View Post
    never seen a pressure problem with too little powder.. .. reduced loads with slow rifle powders might be the problem but nobody seems to understand the problem.

    amc577
    But nonetheless there is a problem and the root cause is known even if the process is not fully understood.
    Good deals with: Muskett, Dreben, roger.kerry, TALL, Helidave1, Chelseablue, Leeroy7031, Mousemann, pnuk, Practical, NEWFI, HOOGS, Webb22, lazybones1416 and deanw5262 among others. Thanks Guys.

  10. #10
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    The burn system of different powders

    http://www.gmdr.com/lever/lowveldata.htm

    A useful article on the burn system of different powders... Ball and rod powders are more of a problem in reduced loads.. I have experienced problems with reduced loads of 2400, a fine ball powder.

    amc577

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