Of all the boneheaded things I've done...


January 15, 2006, 05:40 PM
...This is one of them.

I went shooting yesterday despite the gale-force winds, and had the pleasure of the company of my cousin and his 4 pals. Introduced a couple of them to the joys of handgunning, and despite the cold weather and high winds, we were having fun.

I decided to try some of that fancy "shoot-reload-shoot" stuff with my 1911. So I loaded up a couple of magazines and started making a few cans dance in rhythm. Time came to reload, so I dropped the empty, grabbed my fresh mag, and started to stuff it in. This is where the problem started.

The magazine well on my 1911, in the area where the front "tab" of the magazine floorplate goes, is VERY sharp.

Now, somehow the meat of my palm got wrapped around the floorplate of the magazine, and during the good push I gave to seat it, my hand got bitten -- HARD. It was, as could be imagined, incredibly painful. However, I am amazed that I went through the ordeal without howling in pain, and even MORE amazed that I didn't utter a single word, expletive or otherwise. :neener:

Anyway, being a die-hard shooting junkie, I went about my business and continued shooting. My palm, as well as where the left palm meets with the fingers of the right hand, were a bloody mess. I didn't take a picture of that, but here's a picture of the cleaned-up wounds... still very tender. :(

The point of all this rambling? That there's more to safe gun handling that worrying about where your bullet goes and what your muzzle covers. Injuries, whether it's being shot or getting a hangnail while shooting, can sour the shooting experience.

Please, share your own "boneheaded" moments. :)


P.S. I think from now on I'll stick with my BHP when I'm trying to impress myself... At least I've practiced with that enough to not injure myself like a goober...

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Black Majik
January 15, 2006, 05:42 PM
Ouch Wes, that looks like it hurt! Glad to hear you're ok! :D

LOL... :evil:

January 15, 2006, 05:43 PM
I've never heard myself too badly with a gun, but I did spend 20 minutes trying to figure out how to dissassemble my 522...
After I couldn't figure it out, I gave up. Went to dry fire it and put it back up...but nothing happened. I couldn't figure it out. Safety was off, it was definatly cocked. I got scared thinking I broke it. I immediatly wrote up a detailed post to enter here on THR compiling everything I had done in those 20 minutes (not much, really...). I was just about to hit the post button when I got an idea.

I put the magazine in the gun, and it dried fired with no problem.

(:cuss: disconnects)

January 15, 2006, 05:45 PM
I've done that before.

I just told everyone I had a touch of the stigmata.

January 15, 2006, 05:46 PM
I thought everyone had done that at least once :)

Thats why I use magazines with basepads

January 15, 2006, 05:46 PM
I'm sure i've done a lot of boneheaded things, but the one that I can remember is when I first got my double barrel shotgun. It has two triggers, and of course the first thing I wanted to do was shoot both 3" slugs at once. It went off good, but the recoil from the shotgun causes the front trigger to scrape hard against the finger on the rear trigger behind it. A good scrape, but nothing too bad.

Black Majik
January 15, 2006, 05:47 PM
Actually now that I think about it, I do remember once dropping the slide of my P226 on my finger once. THAT HURT! :what:

You're not alone Wes, we sometimes can hurt ourselves just as much as the can we're shooting at. :D

January 15, 2006, 05:59 PM
I thought everyone had done that at least once That's a fact. :cuss:

January 15, 2006, 06:06 PM
Let's see...the first semiauto I ever shot was a Glock, maybe a G23. Somehow (translation: "idiotically") I managed to get my right thumb behind the slide and above the frame enough that when it cycled, it just about took my thumbnail off. Much blood and unhappiness.
The fellow who owns the range where I shoot just about took his own index finger off many years ago by casually mishandling an "unloaded" Raven, a move and mental state he describes as "dumba$$." Needless to say, my tactical-Glock manicure earned me a coveted spot in the "dumba$$" hall of fame for a few weeks....

About a year later, shooting .38 Super for the first time, in a delightful (really!) old Llama and maintaining a high grip just like a genuine ninja, I was able to experience hammer-bite first hand. (Aside from that, the old import was tack-hammer accurate, despite vestigial iron sights. I should've bought it and had the hammer bobbed). Boneheaded? Yep, since it took three magazines before I connected that funny feeling in the web of my right hand with shooting the gun!


January 15, 2006, 06:15 PM
you did the right thing, playing it tough :) pride trumps pain!:D

January 15, 2006, 06:23 PM
If you have a short grip model, such as the CZ .40 cal Rami. and you insert a magazine then slap it into position, make sure that the edge of your gripping hand is clear of the space that will soon be occupied by the bottom front edge of the magazine.
Neglecting this small detail can result in your hearing words that you didn't even know you knew.
That's all I want to say about that.

January 15, 2006, 06:32 PM
WARNING! BEFORE reading farther, please read the disclaimer at the end of the post.

I left a piece of meat in a Swedish Ljungman at a gun shop once. I put pressure on the damaged region to prevent massive bleeding and left without attracting attention. :cool:

The bolt closed unexpectedly and the gas tube turned into a cookie cutter--except there was no cookie--only my thumb. :(

That remains my worst gun injury.

January 15, 2006, 06:34 PM
Anyone had Garand Thumb? :D

January 15, 2006, 07:06 PM
All I can say is "M1 Thumb" Once, just once.

January 15, 2006, 07:22 PM
Well, it was a friend's boneheaded mistake not mine, but since I have a good picture of it...

He grabbed the barrel on a .50 cal for reasons unknown almost immediately after firing

January 15, 2006, 07:43 PM
Sounds like y'all have perfect opertunities for weak hand drills. With any luck at all your experiences will save my fingers, hands and, other body parts.

January 15, 2006, 07:48 PM
Seen plenty of good ones from other people:

-- Fella fired a PGO (pistol-grip only) 870 held up to his face, busted his nose

-- Guy was trying to clear a jam on an M1 Garand. I wouldn't so much call it "M1 thumb" as much as "M1 severed thumbnail"

-- Took my uncle's .308 XP-100 to the range, warned all my buddies to keep well back from the scope. One buddy didn't listen: heard the muzzleblast followed by a yelp, turned and saw him clutching his face. Saw a dangly bit of junk hanging off the rear of the scope, turned out to be a perfect 2" strip of skin off his nose, slid right up there like a meat-slicer. It was the morning before the Marine Corps Birthday Ball, so he shows up in dress blues and a big ol' strip of white bandage on his honker.

My weirdest one: was rummaging around the confiscation room aboard Camp Ramadi (Anbar province, Iraq), trying to find gear to issue to Iraqi police, and incidentally fun stuff to shoot into the berms just off-base. Found a WWII Italian Moschetto Beretta subgun. I snatched it, cleared it and fondled it for a bit, off and went running to the S-2 to sign for it. Got to S-2, and was told "Um, sir, there's blood all over your arm, are you okay?" There was a chunk of skin and meat tore up right below my hand on the wrist and blood all over the place, and I hadn't even felt any pain. I still have no idea what sharp edge on the subgun might have caused it, and I still have a cool scar on the wrist.

That same Moschetto Beretta also injected shreds of brass into my left hand (it has left ejection, cool...) when we went to shoot it in the sand-pit. One 9mm round (NATO I believe, not confiscated) blew apart as the bolt was closing. Also left the slug 1" up into the bore, so very glad we checked that before firing again, lest I lose an eye to that sucker.

Forgive the long post, but I have a deep and abiding fear of the Moschetto Beretta. -MV

January 15, 2006, 07:49 PM
Before I got the hang of a speed reload with my short-gripped Glock 26, I had a recurring blood blister on the outer edge of my right hand pinkie finger because I kept pinching it when slamming home the magazine. The worst one, ever, was when I tried a magazine with an extended baseplate. That one hurt both hands -- my right pinkie had a blister from the usual stupidity, and the meaty part of my left paw got a broken blood vessel from the rim of the extension. Owie.


January 15, 2006, 07:53 PM
Oh ya. When I was a kid I learned that pretty much everyone I knew had christened their eyebrow with a small semi-circular cut from getting too close to a scope when shooting. They all showed me thier scars AFTER I got mine. :cuss:

January 15, 2006, 07:57 PM
Well, it was a friend's boneheaded mistake not mine, but since I have a good picture of it...

He grabbed the barrel on a .50 cal for reasons unknown almost immediately after firing

Did he say "here, hold my sign" first?:neener:

January 15, 2006, 07:57 PM
I didnt take a picture but I once caught some of the meat on my fingers when I closed a S&W revo. I was trying to the thing where you roll the mag closed and it keeps spining in the gun making a clicking sound. Very boneheaded. Also alot of hangnails, those suck especially when it scratches the gun too! HAHA!


January 15, 2006, 08:03 PM
Yep, it hurts. I've done it more than once. :o

January 15, 2006, 08:25 PM
You need some mag bumpers for sure and maybe even a properly installed magazine well. That'll eliminate the problem altogether.




January 15, 2006, 08:49 PM
Worst one to date was shooting my Winchester Modle 94. First time firing it and learned that it does not eject to a side. Also, I wear glasses. I'm sure your imaginations can take it from there as to why my nose didn't have a good day.

Another good one was stripping down my Mauser Model 34 pistol. One of the steps involves inserting the magazine to unlock the slide, there is no manual slide release on the pistol. Well in my wisdom I had my hand in the wrong place at the wrong time as the slide went foreward.

January 15, 2006, 08:56 PM
Use the heel of your hand...not the palm, and you won't do that again.:cool:

January 15, 2006, 10:13 PM
Was playing with an old 03-A3 once. The rounds weren't feeding right and the silly thing also was hanging up when the bolt was open. Right hand was working to get the bolt to move forward. Left hand was poking at the feeding round to get it angled into the chamber. (You are getting ahead of me here. :D) Yup...bolt broke over the obstruction, left finger entered chamber and bolt (almost) closed. I was about 15 and Dad (the Quaker) was looking over my shoulder, so I couldn't even say anything. :neener:


January 15, 2006, 10:58 PM
Stuff like that's the first thing my Daddy told me- keep your fingers out from in front of the bolt (semiauto in this case)- when I was five years old. It must have stuck 'cause I've never had anything like that happen to me. And then when I take my Garand to the range, everybody wants to pick it up and mash down on the follower... yeah... I'm like "that's a real good way to get Garand thumb".

I don't know how boneheaded it is or anything, but I'll tell ya'll something about range safety, and this happened with me and some guys shooting a cast lead match last August. The range safety rules say do not go downrange while the line is hot, and the range safety officer or match director will tell you when it's hot or cold. My local club has had trouble with idiots running out there while the line's hot. Now that's pretty boneheaded. Well, the older gentleman who was match director that day said "I'm gonna walk down this line and personally see that all rifles are clear, then I'm gonna call the line cold", and he did. Thing is, after the first relay and him inspecting and calling "cold range", I headed on out to score the target- having had both hips replaced and being artheritic, I walk slower so I headed on out hoping nobody'd have to wait on me. Well, when I got about 50yds out (halfway on the 100yd range) I heard the match director repeat "the range is cold" followed by another guy hollering "I hope so, with that man halfway down the range". I turned around and I told them that "I understood the range WAS cold" and nobody said another word about it. Thankfully, the rest of the match went uneventfully in terms of un-safety. The point of what I'm saying is that even though the line is cold, everybody has to communicate and know what each other is doing because the safety rules are essentially how we watch each other's back as well as our own. If they'd have forgotten the line was cold and decided to fire a few more rounds right then for whatever reason- and more rounds fired was decided on a couple of times that day- I'd have been out there taking unintended incoming fire from heavy buffalo rifles. Be sure to communicate with the others on the line any time you share a range with others and things will go much smoother and safer for everybody.

Standing Wolf
January 15, 2006, 11:02 PM
Heck I've never done anything stupid and painful with a gun. Well... except for the time I nearly shot myself in the right foot while closing a Thompson-Center Contender whose trigger I had set too light. I missed by well over a sixteenth of an inch.

January 15, 2006, 11:17 PM
Yeah, those base pads arent there for show...

Declaration Day
January 15, 2006, 11:19 PM
I bought a Walther G22 a couple of years ago. If you're unfamiliar with it, it's a .22 cal bullpup style carbine. The action can be changed from right-hand to left hand.

I am left handed, and the gun was in right hand config when I bought it. I didn't think it was absolutely necessary to change it over. Afterall, my other guns are all right handed.

I took that first shot and the charging handle smacked me in the face. It hurt like hell, but did not leave much of a mark.

January 15, 2006, 11:33 PM
That doesn't look half bad compared to some of the blood blisters I have received from slapping mags into a 1911. Hurts good don't it.

Ever stub your thumb on a slide mounted safety? :what: Only thing I can relate that to was that one time I got hit on the end of my finger by a car's running fan blade. Stopped it dead in it's tracks :banghead: High thumbs indeed :rolleyes:

January 16, 2006, 12:17 PM
When I was younger I went shooting a few times with my friend and his dad who was a hunter. I remember being handed the scoped Marlin 336, and most of my firearm experience involved video games and movies. I know. Anyway, know how the PSG-1 seems like the coolest gun ever to video gamers? And how the Druganov has that rubber eye cup thingy? Well I didn't see one of those on the Marlin, but figured no problem and just stuck my eye right up to the rim. Hell of a time finding a sight picture too! Why is it all black and moving all the time eh? Found it, and shot, and saw stars. Thankfully only a minor cut and major aches, I learned my lesson!

Then of course was the fact that my friend's dad never even thought about ear protection...

No M1 thumb here, just a few close calls while explaining to people to keep their thumbs clear :D

When I took my K-31 out for the first time, my hand slipped or something while operating the bolt and one of the corners on the bolt put a gash on my hand. Sopped up the blood with my t-shirt and finished shooting.

When I got my Russian Capture Mauser, which has no front sight hood, I put the bayonet from my VZ-24 on it. Then had a hard time getting it off, wrapped my hand around the thing for a better grip, and pulled the web of my hand right over the VERY SHARP front sight post:
That was a day after, it was very bloody!

January 16, 2006, 03:18 PM
1. Snapped the hammer down while cleaning a brand new Colt 1851 Singature Series Navy .36--left a double cut and me over mom's kitchen sink howling with said firearm frame attached to thumb... solution? Cock it back open and pour gallon of blood into sink. Reach for gun oil to get blood off case coloring, splatter blood all over kitchen counter. Use entire roll of paper towels staunching bloodflow. To hell with stiches I don't want blood pitting.

2. High thumb hold on Colt Magnum Carry (thumb against cly. release) touch off 125 gr Remington hollowpoint. Result is a split thumbnail and a bloddy mess of a thumbtip, and a another liberal cleaning of blood off a new to me firearm.

3. Blood blisters (on the reloading hand), tire tracks (on the web of the right hand) are common. What isn't is finishing an IDPA stage and realizing that the web of my thumb is caught between the hammer and frame. MMM I'll unload and show clear just as soon as I can figure out what the heck I just did.

These things happen. Bumper pads are only really necessary when your 1911 has a lanyard loop (ouch).

January 16, 2006, 03:47 PM
If that's the most boneheaded thing you've ever done... you are a friggin genius. :D

January 16, 2006, 03:54 PM
Seen on a Sandhurst Report:

"I would hesitate to breed from this officer"


January 16, 2006, 04:20 PM
How about those old Daisy lever BB guns....anybody ever get the bright idea to see if it would fire with the lever in the open position???? It was Christmas day, 8 yrs old with my first BB gun. Decided to see what would happen if I left the lever down and pulled the trigger......:what:
Would rather have shot my eye out....

January 16, 2006, 04:32 PM

Welcome to the club. :D :neener:

January 16, 2006, 07:06 PM
The most bone headed gun incident I've seen didn't happen TO me; but was rather caused by me. I was at an outdoor range in Pa about a year ago shooting
my 1911 when a couple came up to the line next to me. It was fairly obvious that it was her 1st time shooting as her boyfriend spent a fairly decent amount of time going over the funtions of the gun, proper safety etc.. he was actually doing a pretty good job until it was time for her to fire her 1st shot. He had her standing at the line and was standing right behind her speaking into her ear with what I suppose were some last minute words of encouragement. Well I fired a shot and my nice hot brass made a perfect arc into and down the back of her hooded sweatshirt. She did what anyone would instinctively do when they feel something excruciatingly hot drop down their back, she threw her chest forward, and her head back making a VERY solid connection with her boyfriend's face. A loud crunch was followed by a string of explitives and a good sized fountain of blood. They ended up packing up their stuff and leaving. I felt kind of bad, and never got a chance to apologise. So if you're on this board, Sorry I ruined your day, but thanks for the great story to tell over pints later on that night :) Cheers,

January 16, 2006, 08:45 PM
I've used the heel of my hand--well, actually the slug of meat below my thumb. Guess what. It hurt badly. The mother of all blood blisters. Now days I think shooting gloves are just plain smart.

January 16, 2006, 09:00 PM

BTDT- I'd forgotten it until you brought it up. For those who were smarter as kids than we were, the lever flies up HARD when you fire the BB gun, whacking the fingers of your trigger hand quite sharply.

January 16, 2006, 09:39 PM
Loaded up the truck with some sidearms, a LOT of sidearm
ammo, targets, the rifle cases, a lot of ammo for the mini's,
got out to the range which was about 15 miles out, got all
setup to shoot, opened the rifle cases and found out I had
brought out both shotguns..while two mini's where sleeping
very comfortably back in the safe at home. Oh and never
thought to bring any 12 gauge stuff. :confused: :banghead:

January 16, 2006, 09:41 PM
Wow, I have never had my palm pinched while reloading my 1911 (I try to do reload drills a couple of times a week); but now because of this thread it will be in the back of my mind. :uhoh:

But I am not seeing how the flesh of your hands are being pinched? You guys need to toughen up those baby soft, warm dough hands, and then the skin won't "ooze" up into any crevices :evil:

January 16, 2006, 10:03 PM
I had a .25 auto baby brownig knock off (Heanel Schul...German made) when I was younger. Every third or fouth shot the safety notch in the slide would grab the web of your hand, and more than once I danced around triyng to get this thing off my hand howling obscenities.

I wrapped my right thumb tightly around the grip of my Interarms Mk X .458WM when it had the factory stock. 1 round of 500 grain Federal factory stuff and I had the most painful, heavily bleeding nosebleed in my life. When I bought a replacement stock for it I had the length of pull streched out to 14 1/2" and a pachmyre decelerator installed.

Brian Williams
January 16, 2006, 11:20 PM
I was holding the barrel of my Ruger 10/22 and it slipped, the gold bead front sight ripped a nice v shaped cut in my forefinger. It was about 3/8" on each side of the cut.

January 16, 2006, 11:26 PM
Please, share your own "boneheaded" moments. :)

Most painful one was a knee jerk reaction to stop my G-3 from falling over off it's rest by grabbing the barrel-immediately following the rapid unloading of two 30-round mags. There was a significant amount of skin stuck to the very hot barrel.

My sister once (and only once) grabbed my .50 AE Desert Eagle over the top with the slide locked back. Just as she got a firm grasp, she must have pushed on the slide release. Had a ~1" long pinch-cut across the palm of her hand from the massive slide slamming home.

Amazing how many "small" injuries a firearms can cause that have absolutely nothing to do with them being fired (although I have seen some pretty half-moon cuts above eyes):banghead: .

Another dumb-a$$ move was putting my off-hand elbow into stomach and wrapping my hand around the reciever. This is fine with a bolt. lever or pump, but a really bad idea with an auto.

January 16, 2006, 11:39 PM
I had a somewhat similar mishap, in the middle of an IPSC stage. I got my new super D duper race gun, first big magwell I have ever had. Magazines have big aluminum extended basepads on them. Midway through the stage I hit the reload at warp 9, after all that is the point of the great big magwell, doing so I pinched the everlovingbeejeebers out of my ring finger fingernail between the basepad and the magwell. Thank the LORD it didn't seat all the way. I yiped, and reseated the mag, shot the rest of the stage. When I was all done and holstered up the range officer asked me what happened, I looked at the fingernail and it was already turning blue and swelling just 20 seconds after it happened. Smashed it hard enough that I had to drill a hole in the nail that night and relieve the pressure, it was throbbing something fierce!! It has happened once since though not as bad.

The single worst gun injury for me though was with my 1100, there is an edge inside the reciever of EVERY 1100 with any mileage on it that is absolutely RAZOR SHARP!!! I laid my index finger tip open to THE BONE once cleaning it. Blood everywhere and a steady stream, grab a rag that happened to have brake cleaner on it and put pressure on the cut and nearly piddle myself when the brake cleaner hits the open cut. New swearwords never heard by mankind ring out along with every single swearword I know in english and spanish. I didn't get stitched but probably should have. Since then the only thing the inside of that gun has seen is a toothbrush and brake cleaner, then a little oil. Beware of the 1100!!!!!

January 16, 2006, 11:48 PM
The 870 has the same razor in the action. I did the same thing less the brake cleaner. Fortunately I held my water. Still smarted grandly.

January 17, 2006, 04:22 AM
Use the heel of your hand...not the palm, and you won't do that again.:cool:

I guess that's why it's so boneheaded; I usually do it the correct way. :rolleyes:

If that's the most boneheaded thing you've ever done... you are a friggin genius. :D

Not the most boneheaded thing I've done, but amongst them.;)


cracked butt
January 17, 2006, 04:55 AM
Never hurt myself, but I had a scary near miss once. Was taking apart the slide on my 1911 for the first time by following directions on the internet. The instructions said to wear eye protection, but I figured I'd wing it. Taking the firing pin stop out, I pointed the slide away from me, seeing that it was now pointed at my monitor, I turned it around when all of the sudden thhhhhhhhip the firing pin grazed my forehead at about mach 4.

January 17, 2006, 05:32 AM
We were shooting bowling pins one night and my time was running around three seconds to clear five pins using a Ruger Mark II .22 semi-auto pistol. I figured I could cut my time some if I could eliminate what little muzzle jump there was, so I braced my right thumb against the back of the receiver figuring that pushing forward with the thumb would help hold the muzzle down. Big mistake. Almost dislocated the thumb when that bolt came back when the first round fired.

Had a reload I was given jam a S&W Model 19 when the nose of the bullet extended past the front of the cylinder and caught on the edge of the forcing cone. I couldn't rotate the cylinder backward, or open it. I had to twist the cylinder by hand until the edge of the forcing cone shaved off just enough lead to let the bullet pass and line up with the barrel. For some reason I thought the trigger had to be held back for the cylinder to turn. I forgot, however, that as the cylinder was turning the hammer was also moving backward. Of course, as soon as the cylinder turned into alignment with the barrel the hammer dropped and the gun discharged. I was holding the gun in my lap at the time, fortunately with the muzzle pointed down. The slug hit the ground next to my left foot.

I used to load some .38 spl. +p cases to .357 pressures for some police officer friends who were allowed to carry .357 revolvers, but only .38spl. ammo. A guy I knew grabbed a handful of these hot loads off my bench one day without telling me and tried shooting them in his RG .38. He wasn't hitting anything so I asked to try his gun, not knowing he had my hot loads in it. About the fourth or fifth round the gun let go, blowing the top half of the cylinder right through the corrugated tin roof over the shooting line. I was lucky and not injured. He later tried to get me to pay for his gun since it was my ammo that he stole that blew up his gun.

January 17, 2006, 03:34 PM
I have witnessed someone who BROKE his thumb, when he slammed his S&W 629 closed. You guessed it, caught the tip of his thumb.. crack.

Carl N. Brown
January 17, 2006, 04:59 PM
I was stripping rounds from a clip into a Mauser C96,
and slid the palm of my hand down onto the top
of the clip. That wuz some sharp edges. I fired
my six rounds 20 sec timed fire event bleeding like a
stuck pig, then immediately went down to my
car and got out the first aid kit and cleaned and
bandaged my hand before the next stage.

January 17, 2006, 05:26 PM
my palm got wrapped around the floorplate of the magazine, and during the good push I gave to seat it, my hand got bitten

Done that! Had a friend do it too. I've also suffered the mandatory M1 thumb.

My favorite -- or rather -- most painful incident occurred on a warm day at the range. I was loading an M1 en bloc clip. I had seven rounds loaded and was struggling with sweaty hands to get that eighth round seated. When I gave a push with my thumb on the cartridge case my hand slipped. My thumb slid forward hard and fast catching the top lip of the en bloc clip. That little curve of steel slid under my nail and jacked itself into my flesh. Did I cuss? I don't remember. Did it hurt? Oh yeah. Was I bleeding? Profusely. But did I stop shooting? Hell no!! This was my first range trip with that mighty M1 rifle and I was not going to let a little excrutiating pain and gushing blood ruin it. So I sat there shooting, bleeding, and bonding with my new M1.

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