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View Full Version : What causes a mag to blow out the bottom of your handgun?



Wounded Ronin
12/14/2008 9:53pm,
Today I went to a range with a friend and we rented a .22, a Ruger Mark 2. One time, when my friend was firing, the magazine blew out the bottom of the Ruger, the bottom of the casing fell out of the handgun, and the rest of the casing looked like it got kind of crushed while "stovepiping".

Luckily the round went down range just fine, and nobody was injured, and the handgun wasn't damaged.

I went and got one of the range supervisors, who examined the handgun, and then tested it out for safety by loading up seven cartridges and firing them before handing the .22 back to us.

What the heck happened? I've personally never seen anything like that happen before, and I've mostly heard about things like that happening in conjunction with reloaded ammuntion, whereas we were using factory ammunition bought from the range.

hungryjoe
12/14/2008 10:04pm,
Was it the first round shot out of that mag?

Wounded Ronin
12/14/2008 10:19pm,
I'm trying to remember, and I want to say, no, I do not believe it was the first round out of the mag.

But my friend might have manually worked the slide just before firing after getting a "click" instead of a bang, now that I think about it.

hungryjoe
12/14/2008 10:28pm,
Maybe the base was weakened or partially cracked.

Never heard of that, but since .22 is a rimfire, it is a possibility that the base was damaged by incomplete feed and subsequent stripping from the clip.

Lucky for your friend that it didn't set off any other rounds in the mag.

Lord Skeletor
12/14/2008 10:31pm,
Maybe the base was weakened or partially cracked.

Never heard of that, but since .22 is a rimfire, it is a possibility that the base was damaged by incomplete feed and subsequent stripping from the clip.

Lucky for your friend that it didn't set off any other rounds in the mag.

This is what I was going to say...a damaged baseplate---or a baseplate which was improperly assembled and the baseplate catch hadn't snapped into place properly.

Wounded Ronin
12/14/2008 10:37pm,
So, let me make sure I'm understanding this.

You guys are saying that the cartridge could have been damaged, or had a manufacturer's defect, which caused it to not seat properly and to go off out of battery.

Is that correct?

hungryjoe
12/14/2008 10:58pm,
Manufactured ammo in this day and age is pretty well controlled compared to that of the past. Quality control usually ensures fairly consistent loads.

There is a possibility that the magazine was not fully locked into place.

A round did not properly feed, preventing the normally smooth transition from magazine into the chamber. Stress could have been placed on the rim when the second movement of the slide stripped the round from the magazine.

During the manufacturing process, the casing starts out as a solid piece of brass punched out of sheet material. The forming process takes several steps to form the case. The rim would normally be OK, but added stress could have cracked the area where the rim flows into the base.

This is all conjecture.

I have had feed problems with my Mark II using cheap ammunition, but never with the good stuff.

Wounded Ronin
12/15/2008 11:35pm,
So between the magazine not being seated properly, and the slide being worked manually to force the cartridge, the rim itself could have become cracked, which could have blown out the mag.

Thanks very much for explaining to me your conjecture.

Vorpal
12/15/2008 11:49pm,
Maybe a round in the chamber not seated properly, your friend works the action stripping off a new round and the nose of the second round hits the first? A worn extractor on a rental gun would help that happen.

jake8267
12/31/2008 5:12pm,
I actually had the same thing happen with a S&W 9mm. We had a round's casing blow out, slamming the slide back and dropping the mag. It was fine the rest of the day so I'm pretty sure it was just a bad round.

marcusdbrutus
12/31/2008 5:19pm,
That would be a pant-shitting situation.

jake8267
1/02/2009 10:01am,
That would be a pant-shitting situation.

Well my brother-in-law wouldn't fire it again until I'd run a few dozen rounds through it. I figure the casing had been reloaded too many times and the side wall was just too stressed. It's what you get when you by that cheap bulk ammo.