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Thread: So, I had a mishap...

  1. #1

    Default So, I had a mishap...

    I went casual shooting yesterday with a friend who is relatively new to shooting. I brought a couple of handguns, my Springfield M1a, and my Thompson Center Encore pistol, chambered in 270 Win. Out of 45 ammo, we went to the rifle part of the range to shoot the M1a and zero the scope on the T/C pistol. I brought with me a couple boxes of Remington blue box 308 ammo as well a similar looking box of 270 Win.
    I was loading the magazine for the Springfield, while my friend was shooting the T/C 270. After firing a shot, he taps me on the shoulder and says "uh, i cant get the case out."
    I look at the pistol and the case was totally flattened and the primer was gone. He somehow mistakenly put a 308 round in my 270 and fired it. The ejector was jammed under the stuck case so I had to remove the barrel from the grip, and with a borrowed cleaning rod, tried to push the case out from the muzzle end. The last 1/2 inch of the case popped out and fell to the ground. The rest of the casing is still stuck in the chamber.
    So, besides a stuck case in the chamber, to my untrained eye, everything else seems to be OK with the barrel.
    What could I do to get the stuck case out? And, if I get it out, would the barrel still be OK to shoot? Should i scrap it? Have a gunsmith look at it?
    Thanks in advance for your comments.

    -Joey-

  2. #2
    Member JOAT's Avatar
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    I would strongly suggest stopping at this point and taking the gun directly to a gunsmith. Let him get the rest of the case out and inspect everything. I'm very surprised that the case and bullet was even able to fit into the chamber to start with, but you do need a smith to check the barrel thoroughly. It may be salvageable, but there's no way to tell from here.
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    The 308 bullet went down the 277 barrel? Doubt it was a Barnes. A bit of pressure was generated I assume!

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    I would take it to a 'smith. I would bet he will need a reamer to get the rest of the case out and will need to check headspace. You and your friend are lucky and it is a great testiment to the strength and design of the TC. J.

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    Member Alangaq's Avatar
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    Wow! That is incredible! Glad to hear that nobody was injured! Personally, and this is just my point of view, not necessarily what you should do, but if it was mine, I would send the whole thing back to the manufacture for inspection. I would be truthful and tell them exactly what happened and let them check it out. I suspect that they will condemn the barrel, but will probably find the action serviceable, but that is of course only a guess on my part.

    Interestingly enough, I have never seen a RIFLE barrel “survive” being fired with a significantly oversized bullet. Of the four I have seen, three of them ended up with a stuck bullet and badly bulged, and or cracked barrel. The fourth had a stuck bullet but the base and core of the bullet had been pushed thru the jacket and had continued on out the muzzle. In every case the barrels were toast, and amazingly enough, also in every case the shooter was not injured.

    I suspect that your shorter length barrel is the main reason you didn’t end up with a bullet lodged in the tube, as all four of the barrels I mention previously had their bullets stuck about two thirds the way down the 22 – 24 in barrels.

    In any event, it would be safe to assume that your barrel has been subjected to stresses significantly above its design strength.
    “You’ve gotten soft. You’re like one of those police dogs who’s released in to the wild and gets eaten by a deer or something.” Bill McNeal of News Radio

  6. #6

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    Wow.... "Mishap" is putting it mildly. I'm going to agree with Alangaq. I'd send it back to the factory.

  7. #7

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    Sell it to your friend!

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    Member shphtr's Avatar
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    No, I think that your friend probably should not be around any more firearms, much less be allowed to handle them! "Attention to detail takes on a whole lot more meaning when firearms are involved."

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    Smile

    (remind me not to buy a used gun from elmerkeithclone)
    Tennessee

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    Quote Originally Posted by elmerkeithclone View Post
    Sell it to your friend!

    Oh, yeah! And make him bow down and kiss the ground where the T/C plant is built. It was the strength and quality of workmanship of that gun that saved his butt!

    I would not shoot it until a through eval by a good smith. The headspace is likely stretched a bit. There are very few bolt actions that will take that punishment. I've seen two rifles destroyed with one serious injury with that 308 in a 270 chamber scenario.

    Wow the stars do shine on the down trodden.
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    Member Alangaq's Avatar
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    Joe m107, I only have one more thing to add, and I am not trying to upset you or make an enemy here. That said, and looking at this from a logical and emotionless perspective. The “root cause” of this mishap lies squarely on your shoulders. Please note that I am not judging you, but simply stating the facts. You allowed an admitted noviceI went casual shooting yesterday with a friend who is relatively new to shooting.” To use one of your firearms with ammunition supplied by you, under your supervision. And something went terribly wrong. Now clearly you are at fault here, but we ALL make mistakes and I am no different. I wont re-tell my list of boo, boo’s for the sake of entertaining the forum, or easing your guilt, but suffice it to say, we ALL &^%$ up from time to time. We are human beings after all. So go easy on your buddy, as firearms are way easier to come by than true friends, and also go easy on yourself and learn from what happened. No harm, no foul! Everyone learned something, no body got hurt, and at the most you’r out a grand or so worth of gun. That is allot better than explaining to his wife how half his head got blown off at the shooting range!

    We all like to think that our friends, colleagues, and peers are every bit as safety conscious, knowledgeable and proficient as we are. But the reality of it, is that they are for the most part, more similar to our young children. They have the very best of intensions, but lack the experience and knowledge to be left unattended to their own devices in regards to firearms. You are not the first, nor will you be the last person to turn his buddy loose at the shooting range with clear instructions that only require the bare minimum of common sense (from your perspective) to prevent a mishap and be gravely disappointed at the results! This kind of personality trait exhibited by you, bodes well for your home life…………. You are obviously kind, caring, and friendly enough to bring your buddy along and encourage him to engage in the shooting sports. On the opposite end of the spectrum are guys on the forum like myself……….. crabby, jaded, narcissistic, conceited and judgmental………….. find a middle ground my friend, learn from your mistakes and then teach what you learn.

    And last but not least………… if they tell you that your barrel is junk, insist that they return it back to you. Then take it to a machine shop and have them section it in half (length wise). It will make an excellent training aid for your friends and children. I have several such “exhibits” in my garage that help people visualize rifling, headspace, chambers and other stuff…………………… nuf said there.
    “You’ve gotten soft. You’re like one of those police dogs who’s released in to the wild and gets eaten by a deer or something.” Bill McNeal of News Radio

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    Alangaq:
    You make an important point, and it's a Heavy one.

    When I take someone to the range to shoot with me, and especially if he's a newbe, it is my responsibility to keep them, and me, and others, safe.

    I had never thought of it that way, before.

    Thanks

    Smitty of the North
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  13. #13

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    I promise.....if I shot a 308 round in a friends 270 then I would buy that rifle from my friend! Just the way it should work.

    Murphy's right on the money! A bolt gun would have rendered your buddy a mess! If he didn't eat the bolt he would have gotten no less than a nasty sandblasting of hot gases and whatever metal made its way back through the bolt.

    In the end it's like Alan stated, learn from your mistakes. When folks share near misses like this hopefully we all get an eye opener and heed warning because in reality none of us including yours truly is above an accident of this magnitude. I too have ghosts in my closet!

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    Murphy:
    EKC:

    Are you guys saying that a "Thompson Center Encore pistol", is stronger than a Bolt Gun?

    I would never have thought that.

    If it is superior, perhaps, it's something in the design.
    The barrel is short.
    Isn't there some flex at the breech of those guns?

    Thanks

    Smitty of the North
    Walk Slow, and Drink a Lotta Water.
    Has it ever occurred to you, that Nothing ever occurs to God? Adrien Rodgers.
    You can't out-give God.

  15. #15

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    I was very glad that nobody was injured. I did take responsibility for what happened, as i should have been more closely supervising my friend. I was not angry at him, I was calm and explained the consequences of what he did, and he offered to pay for the repair or replacement of the barrel.
    I think that since the pistol is a single shot that locks up tight, and was the stronger Encore frame is why it didn't explode.
    I'll take the barrel to a gun smith on Monday, and I'll update you guys on what the gun smith says.

    -Joey-

  16. #16
    Member Darreld Walton's Avatar
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    Default Lucky to say the LEAST!!!

    There was a story in Rifle magazine awhile back that detailed the results of firing a 7 Rem Mag in a .270 Weatherby rifle, a controlled feed M70, as I recall. The rifle literally exploded, but the barrel held, and was later dissected. The bullet base entered the throat, and being oversize, was 'riveted' , at which point, the pressure pushed the core of the bullet downrange, leaving the jacket in the throat.
    Not ONLY would I have the barrel checked, but you might want to put one of your other barrels on and make sure that the frame wasn't tweaked as well.
    MOST firearms will take a fair amount of abuse, BUT after something like this, may not be useable afterwards. Safety features are usually built in, but tolerances can be maximized after something like this, rendering the gun useless.
    My own experience with this was shooting with one of my sons, who took a liking to my beautiful old K-38 S&W. He experienced a squib load that lodged the bullet under the front sight, and not knowing any better, immediately pumped another round right behind it, bulging the barrel, and luckily, NOT stretching the frame. (thank goodness for really soft lead bullets and Bullseye!) Now it's configured as a Model 15 as that's the only barrel I could find for the little K-frame .38.
    Last edited by Darreld Walton; 06-16-2008 at 06:48. Reason: .

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    Quote Originally Posted by Smitty of the North View Post
    Murphy:
    EKC:

    Are you guys saying that a "Thompson Center Encore pistol", is stronger than a Bolt Gun?

    I would never have thought that.

    If it is superior, perhaps, it's something in the design.
    The barrel is short.
    Isn't there some flex at the breech of those guns?

    Thanks

    Smitty of the North
    In this situation the barrel doesn't rupture but the case does and gas escapes how ever it can. That usually means down through the magazine well which almost always blows the bottom out. I ve seen this bend and break a hinged floor plate (M70) and in an ADL Remington it blew the stock apart. A very nice Husqvarna 358 Norma was destroyed with a 9.3x62 round. The barrel and action looked unhurt but the stock and bottom metal was gone. Depending on caliber fired vs bore size, one 308 in a 270 chamber, in a m700 Remington rendered the rifle unusable because brass flowed around the bolt and the flange of the bolt head (one of the three surrounding rings of steel) was flared out (bent). The action and barrel was cut open for examination and we found the bolt head flared out and the barrel bulged at that point and the ring was split at the bottom. Brass filled the firing pin hole and came out the back of the bolt and into the shooters face. I've seen two Remingotn M700's in 270 fired with a 308 in them and one was pretty much ok ( ADL with the magazine blown out) the other was destroyed (above). Different ammo but I don't know particulars. One M70 (late model) 338 WM had one of my 358 Norma rounds fired in it. The bottom metal and stock were demolished, the rest looked ok ........ sort of. These kind of mishaps will generate about 100,000 psi and it is beyond the design strength of the action or steel.

    The Contendor/Encore contains pressure until the barrel bursts. The block at the rear, the hinge pin and the barrel are quite thick and have very high sheer strength. The weak point, the latch, isn't stressed much. The next new Contender episode may have very different results. I would never shoot such a gun again, it is ruined regardless of what the factory or gunsmith says. It should never be used a gain. Just as a motorcycle helmet that has hit the pavement is not safe anymore, so is this gun.

    It is certainly not worth the risk. The factory will likely replace the barrel and the frame and use only the old serial number, they will not allow a weakened gun to go out.
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe_m107 View Post
    I was very glad that nobody was injured. I did take responsibility for what happened, as i should have been more closely supervising my friend. I was not angry at him, I was calm and explained the consequences of what he did, and he offered to pay for the repair or replacement of the barrel.
    I think that since the pistol is a single shot that locks up tight, and was the stronger Encore frame is why it didn't explode.
    I'll take the barrel to a gun smith on Monday, and I'll update you guys on what the gun smith says.

    -Joey-
    You're right about the Encore frame strength, that saved your buddy...and you...everybody sues. It was one of those mistakes and we all make them. One of the rules of shooting is have only one caliber of ammo on the bench and only for the caliber you are shooting. We'll know next time. I think the gun should be sent back to T/C and see what they think. Do not shoot it again. T/C will likely replace it and may charge you for it but they will make a safe gun from your old serial number.
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



  19. #19
    Member Torpedoshooter's Avatar
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    Thanks for sharing the story, I am glad that no one was hurt! It takes real courage to admit our errors when no one is watching.

    Rich

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    Quote Originally Posted by Torpedoshooter View Post
    Thanks for sharing the story, I am glad that no one was hurt! It takes real courage to admit our errors when no one is watching.

    Rich
    Ditto.....

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