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Old 10-11-2017, 12:51 PM
shil shil is offline
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I've been reading about 442 and 642 cracked frames. Do you suppose this 442-1 qualifies?442-1-171011_001-jpg
I cannot explain just what happened. No injuries to anyone.
Theory 1: Squib followed by full load. However, no bulged barrel, and, forcing cone not damaged. Its measurement matched that of another (intact!) J-frame .38.
Theory 2: Overload/double-charge. Entirely possible. I was using handloads, +P, Speer 135gr GDHP, Accurate #5 powder, LESS than maximum published by Speer. I did work up. Trouble is, there was no big flash or louder-than-normal report. The first clue I had was when I lined up for a following shot and saw the cylinder hanging halfway out of the frame.
Theory 3: Metal fatigue? The gun's a 442-1. Barrel not marked for +P. Factory rep told me +P ok.
May I have, please, some opinions? I won't be offended if one may be "you dope, you overloaded!". I hope the pic is ok. Thanks, All.
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Old 10-11-2017, 03:38 PM
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"I was using handloads..."

Didn't read any further.
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Old 10-11-2017, 03:43 PM
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I would say it would almost have to be a double charge. Hard to tell from your pic but it looks like the cylinder split and blew the top strap off. I've seen squibs in a barrel and no harm done to the cylinder. As for +P in a non +P gun I've always heard, and most of what I have heard was from this board, that +P was safe in any 38 S&W that was model marked.
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Old 10-11-2017, 07:42 PM
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Will a double charge of #5 overflow the case?
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Old 10-11-2017, 08:05 PM
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Photoman, I never denied I may have made a mistake, even after handloading for 40 years, and was merely seeking opinions of others on this forum. Have you never made a mistake? Sorry, I'm not in a position to shoot as often as I like using factory ammunition.
Bosquebass, you are quite correct. The cylinder split from the front and blew off the topstrap. I was surprised at the total lack of "fireworks" when the gun let go. My best guess is that I deliberately double-charged a case to see how the powder level of a double-charge of that powder appeared. I may very well have failed to dump the charge back into the hopper this time before seating a bullet just from habit of loading thousands of cartridges. I thank you for your reply and opinion. Drat, it was such a nice revolver!
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Old 10-11-2017, 08:57 PM
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That is scary looking! I'm glad that you are alright and able to question and try to discover how not to repeat the error whatever it may have been.
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Old 10-11-2017, 10:19 PM
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Looks fine to me.

Of course the picture is blurry and about half the size of a postage stamp when I try to look at it on my iPad.
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Old 10-11-2017, 11:17 PM
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Frame was fine. It could not contain the cylinder explosion due to the small thermonuclear device that went off.


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Old 10-12-2017, 08:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kernel Crittenden View Post
Will a double charge of #5 overflow the case?
No, unfortunately. It's too fine-grained.
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Old 10-12-2017, 08:11 AM
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Looks fine to me.

Of course the picture is blurry and about half the size of a postage stamp when I try to look at it on my iPad.

Sorry. I'm a technoboob still on a lifetime learning curve!
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Old 10-12-2017, 08:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shil View Post
Photoman, I never denied I may have made a mistake, even after handloading for 40 years, and was merely seeking opinions of others on this forum. Have you never made a mistake? Sorry, I'm not in a position to shoot as often as I like using factory ammunition.

I have been reloading for 15 years or so and have made mistakes. Luckily, the guns were not damaged as they were squib loads.

My terse response was due to the implication that the gun might be at fault. In all my years of dealing with handguns and reloads, I cannot recall one example of this type of damage resulting from a defective gun. It has always been the reloaded ammo.

I will be more diplomatic in responding next time.
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Old 10-12-2017, 08:16 AM
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Frame was fine. It could not contain the cylinder explosion due to the small thermonuclear device that went off.


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Smarty! LOL!
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Old 10-12-2017, 08:47 AM
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I have been reloading for 15 years or so and have made mistakes. Luckily, the guns were not damaged as they were squib loads.

My terse response was due to the implication that the gun might be at fault. In all my years of dealing with handguns and reloads, I cannot recall one example of this type of damage resulting from a defective gun. It has always been the reloaded ammo.

I will try to be more diplomatic in responding next time.
Photoman, all is forgiven! I'm glad you have never made a mistake like this one I apparently made. Of course, I'm sorry now I even implied the gun was at fault. I recall a couple of squibs that I fortunately caught. One time, I inadvertently added the wrong powder to my measure to bring up the level and continued loading, then caught my foul-up. I added (I think) RL7 to 2400! I violated that rule of keeping more than one container of powder on the bench. It takes a while to pull apart 40 rounds! As I mentioned in another post, I wanted to see what a double-charge of the load I was using looked like. I cleared the press, started a single case, double-charged it deliberately, and looked at the powder level. This I remember. I do NOT remember dumping that charge! I think habit took over or I had a senior moment and just loaded a bullet. Expensive lesson learned. Please take care and be safe.
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Old 10-12-2017, 08:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill In Texas View Post
That is scary looking! I'm glad that you are alright and able to question and try to discover how not to repeat the error whatever it may have been.
Thank you, Bill.
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Old 10-12-2017, 09:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shil View Post
Photoman, all is forgiven! I'm glad you have never made a mistake like this one I apparently made. Of course, I'm sorry now I even implied the gun was at fault. I recall a couple of squibs that I fortunately caught. One time, I inadvertently added the wrong powder to my measure to bring up the level and continued loading, then caught my foul-up. I added (I think) RL7 to 2400! I violated that rule of keeping more than one container of powder on the bench. It takes a while to pull apart 40 rounds! As I mentioned in another post, I wanted to see what a double-charge of the load I was using looked like. I cleared the press, started a single case, double-charged it deliberately, and looked at the powder level. This I remember. I do NOT remember dumping that charge! I think habit took over or I had a senior moment and just loaded a bullet. Expensive lesson learned. Please take care and be safe.

Happens to the best of us! I've recently cleared off the reloading bench and loading some 38's. I feel like I'm starting all over again. Being very cautious. But it's all really enjoyable and very rewarding.
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Old 10-12-2017, 12:21 PM
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Odd that a double charge didn't "register" to you when it went off. Makes one think it was another culprit, if it wasn't for the fact you admit to double charging a round and losing track of it. Still odd, as you would expect to "feel" a double charge.

Could have been worse I guess. Only an inanimate object was injured this time.
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Old 10-12-2017, 12:34 PM
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shil ,,, looks like it could have been a +P +++++ load

**** happens ,, Glad you are OK ..
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Old 10-12-2017, 05:01 PM
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I’m not knocking reloaders but at 70 know my limitations (long list) and only shoot factory stuff, even if that means shooting less often.
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Old 10-12-2017, 11:36 PM
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In my very first set of reloaded ammo some time ago I had a double charge of W231 in 38 special. Luckily I started at the very low beginning load in my manual, and was shooting out of a 357 mag GP100. No harm to the gun but it still scared me bad. I went back and checked the manual and a double load would still have been more than 357 mag max loads, but not that much over. I was lucky. I went back and I think I identified how I ended up doing a double load. (Turret press, and I think I double pulled the arm when loading the powder because I got distracted.) And it has made me a much more careful reloader. Hopefully lesson learned.


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Old 10-18-2017, 02:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shil View Post
No, unfortunately. It's too fine-grained.
For safety reasons many reloaders have switch to bulkier powders like Red Dot, American Select, Unique, Solo 1000, and 700X, because they are so "fluffy" a double charge will overflow the case. This makes a double charge physically impossible.

Trail Boss is a super fluffy powder. In most cases when Trail Boss is used there's just barely enough empty space left in the case to seat the bullet without the powder being compressed.
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Last edited by Kernel Crittenden; 10-18-2017 at 02:29 PM.
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