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Dry firing .22 rifle, harmful or not

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by runner724, Jun 11, 2007.

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  1. runner724

    runner724 Member

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    Many people feel that dry firing a .22 rifle is a sure way to damage it. However, these same people think that dry firing any other caliber rifles is OK.

    Does it have something to do with the rimfire mechanism instead of a standard firing pin?

    Thanks,
    Alex
     
  2. dstorm1911

    dstorm1911 Member

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    well considering it is a rim fire and the fireing pin is slamming into the chamber everytime ya dry fire it I'd say it is deffinetly harmful unless ya don't mind chipped or broken fireing pins and dented in chamber edges........

    Rim fire that pretty much says it all if there is no rim to cushion the fireing pin then the hardened fireing pin is slamming into the chamber so........... its a no brainer

    "Any other rifle" would mean CENTERFIRE still not good for em but most mistakenly think that because the fireing pin isn't hitting metal its ok what they don't understand is that the fireing pin if unimpeded is slamming into the inside of the bolt it can break the fireing pin as well as peening the metal down around the fireing pin hole inside of the bolt....... but it is less damaging than dry fireing a rim fire
     
  3. SteelyNirvana

    SteelyNirvana Member

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    Yeah,it will mess em' up. I always had my Sears 2200 single shot lever action in my room sense I can remember. All of those years of picking it up and dry firing it when I was a kid finally took it's toll on it. It will now only fire about 1 out of 3 times now. Last time I shot it I had gotten good at cocking the hammer and pulling the trigger,repeat,and some times it took three times for it to actually fire:mad:.
     
  4. kungfuhippie

    kungfuhippie Member

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    So...why does my ruger 10/22 not lock the bolt back after the last cartridge fires:banghead::banghead::banghead::banghead:
     
  5. dstorm1911

    dstorm1911 Member

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    cost of making the Ruger 10/22.......... BTW all of my 10/22s do lock the bolt after the last shot :) ya can get the kit from Power custom otherwise........ count your shots, me I'm not very good at counting so...... I spent the $67 then duplicated their mags myself rather than buying extras of theirs
     
  6. 44AMP

    44AMP Member

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    Yes, id does have to do with the rimfire mechanism

    The firing pin hits the rim of the round, which is supported by the edge of the chamber. With no round in place to absorb the impact, many guns will allow the firing pin to hit the steel at the edge of the chamber.

    Now, the odds of any damage to the gun from a (relatively) small number of hits is small. Snapping the firing pin before extended storage (so no springs are compressed) usually will not harm the gun.

    But large amounts of snapping, by dry firing as practice can have an effect. The firing pin may be damaged, and in exptreme cases, the edge of the chamber is "peened", leaving a burr and a dimple in the steel. If the burr is large enough, it can prevent the chambered round from fully seating, or worst possible case, in a semi auto, a burr on the edge of the chamber could act as a firing pin, firing the round as the bolt chambers it. This is quite unlikely (I have never heard of a real case of it happening), but it is not outside the realm of possibility.

    What is much more likely is that the (dent, dimple, etc.) caused by the firing pin means that right under where the pin hits the rim of the round, there is no steel to support it. Since the rimfire round required the primer compound inside the hollow rim to be crushed (between the firing pin and the barrel, the most likely result is erratic ignition of rounds. Possible that the gun will no longer reliably fire.

    .22s have been made by a lot of people, for a long time. Springs made in the early years of the last century (and before) are often not as well made (material, heat treatment, eyc.) and could take a "set" or even break if left compressed for long periods of time. All the old timers were taught as children when they began shooting, NEVER leave the gun cocked when you put it away. So we learned to snap the firing pin (dry fire) before storage. And the small number of times you do this doesn't hurt the gun, normally.

    Center fire guns do not have the problem of the firing pin hitting the barrel when dry fired. Dry firing is encouraged as training, with certain guns.

    Other gun designs are not suitable for extended dry firing (training) because of the stress on the firing pin without any cartridge in place. Dry firing of these kinds of guns should only by done with a "snap cap" in place.

    Not sure if your center fire can be safely dry fired without snap caps? Check with the manufacturer. Some guns can be, I have an owners manual for a New Model Ruger Blackhawk that says dry firing will not harm the gun. If your manual doesn't say it is ok, then assume it isn't, and always use snap caps for dry fire training.

    Hope this helps.
     
  7. 351 WINCHESTER

    351 WINCHESTER Member

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    I have a cz452. It will not uncock by keeping the trigger back while closing the bolt. I got out the owner's manual and cz says to dry fire to take the tension off the f/p spring. I've done this at least 100 times and have inspected the chamber - no marks whatsoever. I guess it just depends on the rifle and whether or not it has a f/p stop.
     
  8. mnrivrat

    mnrivrat Member

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    Harmful .
     
  9. pdowg881

    pdowg881 Member

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    The 10/22 manual says it's ok to do.
     
  10. kungfuhippie

    kungfuhippie Member

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    Ruger also said that no honest man needs more than 10 rds. in his magazine.

    Ruger also sells replacement firing pins...
     
  11. runner724

    runner724 Member

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    Thanks for all the tips and stories, guys. They really help.
     
  12. Geno

    Geno Member

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    It depends on the firearm. Kimber .22LRs are designed like a center-fire. Dry-fire away. Others, use a snap-cap.

    Doc2005
     
  13. pdowg881

    pdowg881 Member

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    So because Ruger thinks nobody needs more than ten rounds he is a liar and thought it would be funny to say it's ok to dry fire a 10/22?

    It's also a stupid idea to sell replacement parts for firearms too huh? Who does that? Don't they know that every part in a gun is unbreakable and doesn't require maintanaince of any kind?


    What I've been told, is that some guns are well made and the firing pin will stop short of the chamber face, but if there was a round it would hit the primer, and on other guns, the firing pin will continue to travel until it hit's the chamber. So it depends on the individual firearm. And yea I trust the manual when it tells me the operation of my firearm.
     
  14. runner724

    runner724 Member

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    Very good point. I am glad this was brought up, however, because I own a 10/22 and was confused by the "dry fire OK" notice. Perhaps Ruger knows its bad to dry fire, but figures it would be worse if people were afraid to fire it when empty.

    There is no decocker on a .22, so dry firing has to be done at some point.
     
  15. pdowg881

    pdowg881 Member

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    Page 20 Ruger 10/22 manual: The rifle can be "dry fired" for practice as long as it is empty and pointed in a safe direction.
     
  16. kungfuhippie

    kungfuhippie Member

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    pdowg881,
    sorry, I forgot to put up my sarcasm warning :)

    If the firing pin "stops short" in a "well made" gun that means that something other than the rim stops it. That other part, no matter how "well made" the gun, is will wear out and may break. As much as I like my 10/22 it is not an unbreakable wonder. No gun is.

    It's a simple thing-the 10/22 has been around for a long time and has proven profitable for ruger-why change it? that's expensive! When the issue of dry firing was raised it was very cheap to change the owner's manual and continue replacing the very rare dry fire related damage rather than redesign the gun to be better. Every industry weighs the costs or improvement with the cost of status-quo. They almost always choose which ever results in more money. The auto industry is notorious for this stuff.

    So dry fire all you want-Ruger will fix your gun if it breaks. They have very good customer service from my experience.
     
  17. rangerruck

    rangerruck Member

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    there are a few 22's you can dry fire, ruger, kimber, nef, but others i could not tell you about. Mostly i would say not.
     
  18. mnrivrat

    mnrivrat Member

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    The design of the firing mechanizim on the 10/22 prevents the firing pin from coming foward far enough to make contact with the edge of the chamber. For this reason, it is less likely to cause the damage normaly associated with dry firing a rimfire gun.

    My personal opinion is dry firing any gun is not a good practice. After all, if you hit and anvil with a ballpin hammer often enough you will creat a dent in the anvil - the same holds true for anytime you bring two metal pieces together under some amount of force.

    Yes, it may take a long time to do damage on some guns due to their design, and yes some dry firing on some guns is not going to do enough harm to be concerned about. Most - not all - rimfire guns are subject to rapid damage when dry fired. Most all centerfire guns can withstand a good deal of dry firing.
     
  19. runner724

    runner724 Member

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    Makes sense.
     
  20. pdowg881

    pdowg881 Member

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    I give up. Your right and Ruger's wrong.



    And for the record, there is a firing pin stop built into the bolt of the 10/22, so it actually is designed to be dry fired. It's not some Ruger money making conspiracy. If the manual and design of the gun says it's ok then I'll take my chances and get some good dry fire practice.
     
  21. runner724

    runner724 Member

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    It's hard to tell who is right. I am just looking for general consensus and personal accounts to help me decide.
     
  22. kungfuhippie

    kungfuhippie Member

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    I'm glad your eyes have been opened:neener:

    No hard feeling - I only meant to stress that it's way cheaper and quicker to pop in a snap-cap than to replace a firing pin (don't ask how I know this;) )
     
  23. IndianaBoy

    IndianaBoy Member

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    My CZ 452 uncocks itself just fine if I hold the trigger down and lower the bolt. You might want to have yours checked out.
     
  24. matt87

    matt87 Member

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    Well it's verboten in the Anschutz .22 target rifle manuals. For dry-fire practise we use snap caps or empty cases. The firing mech is designed to make misfires very rare, and so at its furthest point, the tip of the firing pin would project beyond where the rim of the case would be and into the chamber. (.22lr rim is just 1mm [1/25"]) Hardened steel snapping into hardened steel under spring tension... mnrivrat's hammer-anvil point sums it up.

    Mind you, we store rifles with bolts closed, and do so by holding the trigger back and closing the bolt. Once you cam the handle down, the firing pin/striker snaps forward of course. This is less harmful though I think, as the striker is lowered slowly along the bolt handle cam as opposed to dropped all at once by release of the sear, if you see what I mean.
     
  25. wanderinwalker

    wanderinwalker Member

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    matt87, that's interesting, as my brother had a Walther KK100 that was expressly OK to dry-fire without a snap cap. And his rifle would ALWAYS light off rounds that failed to fire in one of the other shooter's rifles (including the odd Anschutz misfire). Weird.

    Ruger's Rimfires are OK to dry-fire. Certain others are as well. Just check the manual. And when in doubt, drop in a snap cap. As said, it's cheap insurance.
     
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