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View Full Version : Tube fed magazines and pointed bullets - myth busted !!



blacksmithden
08-07-2016, 09:32 AM
I've actually been on the lookout for years for a chunk of clear tubing like these guys got so that I could test this myth. I'm glad there are others out there who are in the mythbusting club with me. Many hands make light work as they say. :) If you don't want to watch the video, then I'll tell you pointed bullets will NOT set off the cartridge in front of it in a tube magazine. If there was ANY damage to the primers, I'd say it was possible even if it didn't happen during testing...but there was none. I think it's Hornady that makes Leverevolution ammo...I'm guessing they're hating this video. LOL. Anyway...on with the show.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NeJmOxIklDc

Foxer
08-07-2016, 10:01 AM
Its always been known that it's very unlikely to get a chain reaction. However - it can happen and even tho the chances are slim, it's a real threat. As i understand it (and it makes some sense) it's postulated that it's more likey when you have only 2 or so rounds in the mag and the spring is a little warn out, allowing the recoil to push one round slightly forward, and then bring it back on the head of the previous round. I don't know if that's even a real thing that could happen, it seems like most of the tube feds i've played with hold even one round pretty darn secure, but i guess maybe in an older gun?

Anyway - like he says, maybe only a 1 in 1000 chance, but that still justifies not loading pointy bullets.

RangeBob
08-07-2016, 10:46 AM
I thought 5.56 nato rounds had a hard primer. (as opposed to the softer primers used 100 years ago, or handgun rounds)

lone-wolf
08-07-2016, 11:12 AM
yea... I'd rather see an actually round used in a lever action rather than like rb said, a round with harder primer.
Get a lever gun, put it securely in a lead sled and shoot via a remote device.


lol, just seen the part were it's shot with a slug

kennymo
08-07-2016, 11:35 AM
Its always been known that it's very unlikely to get a chain reaction. However - it can happen and even tho the chances are slim, it's a real threat. As i understand it (and it makes some sense) it's postulated that it's more likey when you have only 2 or so rounds in the mag and the spring is a little warn out, allowing the recoil to push one round slightly forward, and then bring it back on the head of the previous round. I don't know if that's even a real thing that could happen, it seems like most of the tube feds i've played with hold even one round pretty darn secure, but i guess maybe in an older gun?

Anyway - like he says, maybe only a 1 in 1000 chance, but that still justifies not loading pointy bullets.

Maybe even less than 1 in a 1000.... My understanding of this is that there are a few documented cases of a detonation occurring in the tube with spitzer projectiles. But only a few.... Rare as hell, but the possibility is there. I for one don't want to be holding on to the 30-30 forend that has a few rounds chain detonating inside.... The old man handloads pointed 150 gr Hornady Interlocks for his 30-30. But he loads one in the chamber and only one up the tube. Claims he's not fast enough to aim more than twice anyway ;). And he keeps his pointed handloads tucked away from the general public....

Foxer
08-07-2016, 12:26 PM
Maybe even less than 1 in a 1000.... My understanding of this is that there are a few documented cases of a detonation occurring in the tube with spitzer projectiles. But only a few.... Rare as hell, but the possibility is there. I for one don't want to be holding on to the 30-30 forend that has a few rounds chain detonating inside.... The old man handloads pointed 150 gr Hornady Interlocks for his 30-30. But he loads one in the chamber and only one up the tube. Claims he's not fast enough to aim more than twice anyway ;). And he keeps his pointed handloads tucked away from the general public....well - and one has to wonder if there's so few cases of it documented because nobody does it :) I've done the two-up thing but most of my lever hunting now is with 44 mag so it's kind of moot. I suspect it's extremely unlikely to have an incident but I just don't want to find out the hard way :)

kennymo
08-07-2016, 12:41 PM
well - and one has to wonder if there's so few cases of it documented because nobody does it :) I've done the two-up thing but most of my lever hunting now is with 44 mag so it's kind of moot. I suspect it's extremely unlikely to have an incident but I just don't want to find out the hard way :)

Hard to say really. Most common lever calibres aren't even commercially available with pointy ends either, so....yeah. And the spitzer didn't really come about until the very late 1800's when advancements in lever action design mostly came to a halt, though Winchester and Savage both seemed to realize there was a problem and developed their 1895 and 1899 (respectively) models in an attempt to coax military contracts for rifles using the new streamlined projectiles. I must assume that someone did some playing around with the concept around 1890, since all the European powers abandoned their military tube fed rifles at about the same time too. As mentioned, modern primers might be a little stouter than 1890's metallurgy would allow as well.

Justice
08-07-2016, 01:46 PM
That video doesn't prove much of anything. Most of the recoil is being released into nothing or to break the hunk of wood and the brick. Might be valid if the firearm was secured tightly in a vice or the like.

Rory McCanuck
08-07-2016, 02:38 PM
yea... I'd rather see an actually round used in a lever action rather than like rb said, a round with harder primer.
Get a lever gun, put it securely in a lead sled and shoot via a remote device.


lol, just seen the part were it's shot with a slug
The only recorded case that I know of was from Elmer Keith (or maybe P.O.Ackley?).
They used a 348 Winchester in a Model 71, and must have made up some point 34cal bullets.
It blew up.
Using 223 ammo is great and all, but the bullet alone in a 348 weighs as much as the 223 cartridge.
I guess the recoil of a 348 is pretty stout, as well.

I shot a couple bucket-fulls of 30-30 with pointy 125gr bullets before the internet told me my twig n berries would fall off.
I should check, but I think they're still there.

Swampdonkey
08-07-2016, 10:38 PM
The other side to the LeveRevolution solution would be patented hard primers that can only be ignited by a hard steel firing pin, not lead or copper tips.

If that were possible, I'm sure someone would be all over that patent.

Kenwp
08-08-2016, 04:57 AM
They used to load the pointed bullets with hard primers in the Accelerator 30-30 shells years go. They use a smaller pointed bullet with a sabot and was supposed to make a 30-30 a varmint cartridge .Must have not caught one as I have never seen them in years now.

tinbird
08-08-2016, 08:27 AM
Now this is only heresay I admit but I have read posts on other forums that the cowboy action crowd are shying away from Henry rifles due to discharges occurring when the tube is seated too fast. Not sure of the exact circumstances regarding loads, primer/bullet combos etc. I realize that this isn't an actual discharge through firing a firearm but if nothing else a reminder to always be careful.

Foxer
08-08-2016, 08:47 AM
They used to load the pointed bullets with hard primers in the Accelerator 30-30 shells years go. They use a smaller pointed bullet with a sabot and was supposed to make a 30-30 a varmint cartridge .Must have not caught one as I have never seen them in years now.

Tried some in other 30's - for me they were about as accurate as spinning around three times and shooting at random. But i'm hardly a master at reloading at all, so maybe others had better luck.

kennymo
08-08-2016, 11:02 AM
Now this is only heresay I admit but I have read posts on other forums that the cowboy action crowd are shying away from Henry rifles due to discharges occurring when the tube is seated too fast. Not sure of the exact circumstances regarding loads, primer/bullet combos etc. I realize that this isn't an actual discharge through firing a firearm but if nothing else a reminder to always be careful.

There's a warning in the Henry manual, not about closing the tube too fast, but about loading the gun with the barrel dead vertical. They want you to hold the gun at an angle so the cartridge is slowed by sliding against the side of the tube on the way down.

** Just realized you wrote 'discharge', a Henry should only be loaded with the chamber empty. With my 30-30 it's difficult to manipulate the magazine tube without at least putting a finger or two across the muzzle.

UCSPanther
08-08-2016, 11:41 AM
If you want to use pointed bullets in a tube mag-fed firearm, just use it like a falling block: One shell in the chamber.

lone-wolf
08-08-2016, 02:01 PM
They used to load the pointed bullets with hard primers in the Accelerator 30-30 shells years go. They use a smaller pointed bullet with a sabot and was supposed to make a 30-30 a varmint cartridge .Must have not caught one as I have never seen them in years now.

I don't know who told me but apparently fish and game doesn't allow accelerator bullet/sabots in 30cals on PEI to skirt the regulation that limits coyote bullets to .22cal
But, .22-250s are good to go.

Marcel
08-14-2016, 08:22 AM
I would have liked to see if there was even slight change in bullet seating depth (cartridge OAL) after all those tests as well. They should have also rigged it so the rearmost cartridge was discharged so we could see all the fun that happens with a chain fire.

Through all those tests I just kept thinking "Oh that poor old shotgun!" LOL!

blacksmithden
08-14-2016, 09:52 AM
There's a warning in the Henry manual, not about closing the tube too fast, but about loading the gun with the barrel dead vertical. They want you to hold the gun at an angle so the cartridge is slowed by sliding against the side of the tube on the way down.

** Just realized you wrote 'discharge', a Henry should only be loaded with the chamber empty. With my 30-30 it's difficult to manipulate the magazine tube without at least putting a finger or two across the muzzle.

Brought to you by the same corporate lawyers who make the manufacturer write "Do not eat" on shampoo bottles ? :)

kennymo
08-14-2016, 12:18 PM
Brought to you by the same corporate lawyers who make the manufacturer write "Do not eat" on shampoo bottles ? :)

No, these are the ones that made Winchester put a safety on a rifle with an exposed hammer and a half cock......:p

lone-wolf
08-20-2016, 03:06 PM
No actual test, yet.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uhB5mMyEJFA

WSA
08-20-2016, 05:40 PM
There was a picture in Handloader magazine years ago of a 30-30 that it happened in. I don't recall the author, but he said something like "you could load spitzers in a 30-30 your whole life and nothing may go wrong, or you might do it once and conditions allow a detonation." For the small ballistic gains realized and the distances most tube lever rifles are used at, it's probably not worth the risk, especially when you can get the Hornady bullets if you really feel the need to use a pointy bullet.

graz
08-24-2016, 09:32 AM
I am coming to this discussion late but if there is even a 1:1000 chance as mentioned in the first posts, many hunting scenarios where this could happen would include solitary individuals several hours from the nearest medical help, often at dusk. Bad conditions to have if you have a small-ish Kaboom right above the palm of the hand.

I like my Marlins but will stay with FN bullets for the tube mags.

zulu
08-24-2016, 09:42 AM
If I really want to try a pointy round and make my lever into a prairie hunter then I'd just use two rounds one in the chamber and one in the tube. Two rounds and perfectly safe still.