Casing Stuck In Rifle - Advice


December 5, 2012, 03:51 PM
Did somthing stupid last night. I loaded a fired brass cartridge into the magezine of my new Ruger American (308), inserted the mag, and attempted to chamber the spent casing (was wanting to dry fire against against a spent primer). The casing acted like it was going to chamber, but when I got the bolt all the way forward, and started to lock it down, it bound up. :banghead: Looking back, I guess it was pretty foolish to try to chamber spent brass, as I guess the kneck diameter is probably larger than normal after being fired. I didn't even think about it. :banghead:

I tried to reverse course and pull bolt back, but no dice. Presently, the bolt is stuck, all the way forward in the up position. It will not lock down, nor pull back. I tried lightly tapping the bolt back with my hand and then lightly pushing the casing out with a cleaning rod, but no luck. It was starting to get late, so I decided to put it away, and wait for advice. I have read that you can sometimes push stubborn cases out with a wooden dowel (with or without some penetrating oil to assist), filling the barrel up with oil and using a swap to create hydraulic pressure to push the casing out, tapping the back of the bolt with a rubber mallet, take it to a gun smith.

I think I will try the wooden dowel and go from there. Does this sound feasible, and is there anything else I need to be aware of or should try first? Again, this was a fired casing, so there is no powder/primer/bullet to worry about. Thank you for your ideas and advice.


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December 5, 2012, 03:53 PM
brass cleaning rod down the bore and a mallet?

December 5, 2012, 03:58 PM
Same, well almost same thing happened to me, I was shooting some steel amm throughmy '700 and the chamber became too hot, somehow sticking the casing in the chamber. A good hit with a dowel or one peice cleaning rod (maybe with some oil) should loosen things up, here is the thread that I posted about this:

Hope this helps,

December 5, 2012, 04:14 PM
I don't have a brass cleaning rod. I have a flimsy (aluminum?) small diameter rod, and didn't use a mallet. Just a couple taps with my palm. The rod started to bend, and that was when I figured I would be better off waiting. I'll look for a good brass one, or try a .25" oak dowel. Thanks for the replies!

December 5, 2012, 04:17 PM
I wouldnt suggest wood, if it breaks off inside it will be a pain to remove. Use a proper fitting cleaning rod (brass or steel) you dont mind damaging the threads on when you beat it into the case. You could also use a rubber, nylon, or rawhide mallet to whack the bolt handle back and hope the extractor pulls the case out. If not it is back to the cleaning rod.

December 5, 2012, 04:18 PM
dont get a segmented rod. that can get you in a lot more trouble. If the bolt handle is not in lock at all, you could try a few firm smacks of the buttstock on the ground.

December 5, 2012, 04:25 PM
Just go to a hardware store and buy a 36" x 1/4" brass rod.

You can knock the case out with one whack without even using a hammer.

The weight of the rod alone will knock it out.

Just be absolutely sure the bolt isn't partially locked.

DO NOT try to use a wood dowel rod.
If it splits in the bore and wedges gainst itself?
You will have The Mother Of All Bore Obstructions to deal with.


December 5, 2012, 09:21 PM
Got it out! Brass cleaning rod down the bore behind some penetrating oil, turn rifle muzzle down against garage floor, lifted the rifle about 4" and let it come down on the rod and the casing popped right out. :)

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