Something about my bullets


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jagu
August 11, 2011, 02:50 AM
While cleaning my Sig about a few minutes ago (Current time 0139)
I came across something I have never seen before in my life with guns. One of my Winchester Ranger chambered in .357 sig looked really dark and seems to have shrunk, picture attached (Lousy quality I know)
First round is the one I have chambered all the time.
Second round comes from the magazine, next one in line
Third round and on, from the box.

I figured the darken of the bullet it self, must be from the moisture/heat of been carried around all the time. But the bullet it self shrinking, I cannot explain that.

So all this rambling leads to my TRUE question, can I still effectively fire this round safely or best if I just chuck it?

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doc2rn
August 11, 2011, 03:01 AM
Do not shoot that bullet! It has recessed and will cause an over pressure! Basically the crimp has failed from multiple chamberings.

BFC
August 11, 2011, 03:01 AM
It's not shrinking, it's called bullet set back and yes, chuck it. Long story short, the neck is short on 357 sig and has not much to hold on to the bullet. When chambered repeatedly the bullet can sneak backs in the case, as it did, which will dramaticaly increase the pressure in the case when fired. possibly damaging the gun.

Fisherdave10
August 11, 2011, 04:24 AM
Repeated chambering of a round from the magazine can cause bullet setback. The first round looks odd because the bullet has been pushed too deeply into the case because of multiple chamberings.

Don't shoot the first round. Firing that round would most likely lead to excessive pressures and could cause damage to your firearm or yourself. Unless you have reloading equipment and can pull the bullet back out to spec and re-crimp it just to shoot at the range, it would be wise to just chuck it.

You can prevent bullet setback by not chambering a round from the magazine unnecessarily (obviously, properly manufactured ammunition won't setback on the first feeding) . Different brands of ammo may be more resistant to setback than others but eventually nearly all will setback with repeated chamberings. You can drop a round in an open chamber and close the slide on it but I have heard many guns do not have extractors designed to slip over the rim of a cartridge. When I carry with a loaded chamber, this is what I do so I don't have to worry about setback.

mgmorden
August 11, 2011, 11:53 AM
You've got your answer - set back due to repeatedly chambering the round. It can be dangerous.

You can drop a round in an open chamber and close the slide on it but I have heard many guns do not have extractors designed to slip over the rim of a cartridge.

On virtually any gun its hard on the extractor, but on some (like a 1911) it's hard to the point that it will quickly tear up the gun. Overall, not a good practice.

I'd say to get into the habit of rotating which round you're putting into the chamber. Better still, stop loading and unloading it. When the gun is with you, its loaded. I'd assume that if you're home and not carrying at home, at a minimum you're planning on strapping it on the next day. If you have young kids at home, I'd put it in a lock box or a safe until the next day. Otherwise, just set it on the nightstand or something. No need to keep cycling your ammo.

jonnyc
August 11, 2011, 11:57 AM
Simple physics, dude.
The darkness could be caused by two other issues.
1. A dirty throat and chamber. Your carry gun should be spotless after firing.
2. Too much oil/lube in the barrel/chamber area. After you lightly lube all the working parts of a gun, cycle the action a few times and then wipe everything, in and out, dry. No oil/lube should come into contact with your carry ammo.

jagu
August 11, 2011, 11:57 AM
Thanks for the feedback guys!
I'm going to chuck that little guy the next time I hit the range.
I do perform what you do Fisherdave10, as I carry a full mag with one in the chamber. Maybe I have to stop cleaning my guns so often when I'm bored.

Hmm, never assume those two options jonnyc.
I know it's not 1., as I mentioned before....boredom leads to cleaning (guns not housework)
Thanks for number 2., gotta watch for that.

Jim K
August 12, 2011, 11:46 PM
A couple of years ago, I ran some tests with "bullet setback" in 9mm P. (not .357 SIG) and became convinced that the stories of excessive pressure and guns blowing up by the dozens had no basis in fact, at least for 9mm. Even when the bullet was forced down on the powder charge, there were few signs of excessive pressure and firing was normal.

Bullet setback can be caused by the recoil of the gun pushing back bullets in the magazine as well as by repeatedly loading the same round (the most mentioned cause).

If the setback bullet bothers you, by all means toss the round. But in a defense gun I would be more concerned about a misfeed and a jam from the short round than with a hyopothetical blowup.

Jim

rcmodel
August 13, 2011, 11:39 AM
became convinced that the stories of excessive pressure and guns blowing up by the dozens had no basis in fact, at least for 9mmI agree with you.

I simply cannot believe the factory's would churn out unsafe ammo that would blow up guns if a bullet got deep seated during feeding.

It happens all the time on the first feed cycle, and you don't know it.
Because you shot the round and nothing bad happened.

It could be dangerous with handloads that use a lot of fast powder and are already running balls-to-the-wall pressure to begin with though.

rc

Fishslayer
August 14, 2011, 04:13 AM
I've heard of people rotating the chambered round to the bottom of the mag so a different round gets chambered each time.

FAS1
August 14, 2011, 10:50 AM
I remove my CCW gun and holster and put it in the safe still chambered and just put it back on in the morning. I have a dedicated HD gun that also stays chambered in my handgun safes mounted on the bed frame. Keeps me from having to empty the chamber daily and I believe also helps reduce the chance of a ND. I have never had an issue with bullet set back. Both are 9mm.

Lubricant
August 14, 2011, 12:44 PM
I allways put one fresh round of my of my carry ammo to the side to use as a master gauge.Then every time I clean the mags,I'll use a dial caliper to compare the mag rounds to the master.I do rotate the rounds in the mags time to time,But I usually find one or two rounds out of spec.I chuck em.And if your bullets are becoming discolored from your carry conditions,Maybe you should consider fresh ammo on a regular basis.

Steve C
August 14, 2011, 04:02 PM
I agree with Jim K and RCmodel that bullet setback doesn't increase pressure to any significant amount in factory ammo. I've shot many a set back 9mm and .45 acp without any signs that they where overpressure via examination of the spent case and primer. They all fired normally and showed no difference in accuracy out of a handgun.

The only issue I see is the possibility that a set back round may not reliably feed thus it is logical that the set back round should remain as the ready chambered round as it will fire as normal and the action will feed the following standard length rounds from the magazine as normal.

orionengnr
August 14, 2011, 09:19 PM
I've heard of people rotating the chambered round to the bottom of the mag so a different round gets chambered each time.

Ayuh, that's what I do. But I do not unload and reload daily. My carry gun is only unloaded when it is run dry at the range, or when it is being cleaned at home afterward.

So my carry rounds are only rotated once a week or so (after each range session). And I expend all of them every six months or so.

Of course, my carry round is .45 acp, which is a low pressure round. If were shooting a high pressure round such as 9mm/.357Sig/.40S&W/10mm I would be a bit more concerned about bullet setback, and would probably do some more measuring.

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