BulkAmmo.com is giving a way a case of .223

BulkAmmo.com is giving a way a case of .223. Details below:

http://www.bulkammo.com/rifle/bulk-.223-ammo#contest

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A quick survey

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DEFCAD content mirrored

UPDATE:
Had to temporarily disable the below links.
Content is safe, and this is due to overwhelming my hosting provider, not because the gubbermint threatened me.

The Defense Distributed file pack is here. Hashes:

MD5: F4784E3C4C6B6D851C3F2CFD8579B2A6
SHA-1: 3B733B62D8D3B08DE9BFFB94CDD308C18BF09BB0
SHA-256: 8B3247FE5145E87ABA5B91A6DFCA26193E5472C60AF279223CE5A92611A24D31

The Liberator is here. Hashes:

MD5: 26DE1E830AC58C078650B69C4D34602E
SHA-1: AA33BC73264B80B87D21FF8D56DE02EAECDA3574
SHA-256: 763927D34CE89B550A118E3522181FC434632D6D6188CB82E1612096A613C4AA

Also, the hashes for both are contained in a text file for convenience sake.

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Short on small pistol primers? Use small rifle primers in your pistol hand loads

I’ve known for sometime that dimensionally, small rifle and pistol boxer primers were the same. I’ve also known that it was generally safe to use small pistol magnum primers in place of the standard ones. This occasionally was necessary when I was running low on one type.

Given the recent ammunition and reloading component panic of the last 6-8 weeks, I started researching the feasibility of using small rifle primers (which I have an abundance of) in my .38 special plinking loads.

I started with my favorite cowboy load:

3 grains IMR Trail Boss
158 grain lead cast semi-wadcutter (I casted these myself for bonus points)

SCAN0007
This is my baseline group with CCI small pistol magnum primers

SCAN0008
This is my test group with CCI small rifle primers

While the rifle group looks better, I also shot it last. It’s very likely I warmed up and improved shooting the second group. The point of this, however is not an accuracy comparison, but a safety and functional comparison. At least with this modest charge, I could not detect any pressure signs or other concerns with the small rifle primers. Eventually I may load up full house .357mag loads using a slow burning powder, such as H110 and rifle primers. If that is also successful, then I might consider standardizing both my carbine and revolver hand loads on a single type of primer.

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Learn from my mistakes! Epic Squib Load.

The setting:
Recently I was shooting a snub nose revolver. I had 2 boxes of defensive ammo in .38+p, but only a dozen rounds of my standby .38spl plinking ammo. What I did have was a brand new batch of hand cast bullets with an experimental lube I’d not tried before. I tested out a few rounds of “beta” ammo in a full frame gun, and it seemed reasonable.

The problem
I load up the snubby with the hand cast beta lubes: bang, bang, bang, STUCK CYLINDER.

This was a squib load, where the bullet left the case, but stopped mid way between the cylinder throat and the forcing cone. If it had gotten all the way into the barrel, I could have swung open the cylinder, which is more typical.

The cause
This was a combination of problems:
1) too little crimp for the recoil of the snubby revolver
2) my homemade lube was TOO oily, and it saturated the powder, reducing the ignition

How I know the cause
1) an unfired round in the next chamber jumped the crimp about 1/8″
2) when I later pulled the bullets, some of the powder came out it sticky clumps (think kitty litter)

How I cleared the failure

A locked up cylinder has to be the worst failure, as there’s almost nothing to be done in the field, unless you carry a brass dowel and mallet
On my way home from the range, I stopped by a gunshop. The owner was intrigued, and felt I had enough of a clue he would help me out.
He ended up using a steel punch (which scared the crap out of me), as the wood dowel kept cracking. Eventually we tapped the lead bullet back into the brass case, and the cylinder swung open.

THIS COULD HAVE GONE MUCH WORSE.

If the bullet had traveled just 1/4″ further, it would have cleared the cylinder and I might have fired into the obstructed barrel. I have to assume a polymer frame would have KABOOMED in this scenario.

I had been hand loading for 2+ years and never had a squib, as I’m paranoid about safe charging amounts. This however was not a problem with the charge size, but a contamination of the powder from wet bullet lube.

As ammo levels are unpredictable, a lot of new folks are diving into reloading. Whenever you are trying something radically new (cast bullets, different powder, etc.) always proceed with caution. I was showing off, trying to impress my wife and it almost ended in disaster.

“An intelligent man learns from his mistakes, A wise man learns from the mistakes of others.”

Be wise.

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