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Thread: Bullet sticking in barrel?

  1. #1
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    Default Bullet sticking in barrel?

    A few years ago while out, I got into a situation where I chambered a round but ended up not needing it. So I tried to eject the round, and the bolt was stuck. I really didn't want to keep a round in the chamber so I really whacked the bolt, and it pulled the shell out, but the bullet was still in there. Spilled powder everywhere. So now I'm stuck a few miles from camp with a useless rifle.

    Got back to camp and was able to use a tent pole to get the bullet out.

    Rifle is a Winchester M70 in .338 win mag. I don't remember who made the rounds, but they were off the shelf, not handloads. I know they were a premeium safari grade, 250 grain, with nickle shells. My rifle never really shot them that well, but it was acceptable for hunting, could this be why? It sure likes the Remington coreloct 225's alot better. Maybe the chamber in my gun is short?

    So now I always cycle all of my shells through the rifle, making sure I can extract them after I chamber them. I had never even though of this before untill it happened.

    So is this a basic thing that I never learned to do? I have never heard of it happening before. Maybe this will keep someone from having the same problem.

  2. #2

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    Sure sounds like either a short throat in your chamber or something out of spec in the ammo- especially since it was a "premium" bullet. It could also simply be an unfortunate combo of min throat vs max OAL.

    I've had the same experience with handloads long ago, teaching me the value of determining my own min seating depth versus simply using the OAL listed in a reloading manual.

    Your precaution of test cycling each variety of ammo through the action is my standard test with all new handloads, but frankly I never thought of doing it with factory loads. Frankly it's a good thing your offending factory loads didn't result in pressures elevated dangerously.

    Test cycling would be a good standard practice for that particular rifle. With the current state of affairs at Winchester, I'm not sure what you could manage by sending the rifle back, but that would be a good precaution during the off season. Short of letting Winchester have a look, you could pay a gunsmith to check the rifle for you, then lengthen the throat if in fact it is shorter than spec. If/when you sell the rifle, I'd at least be sure to tell the new owner about your experience.

    It would sure help if you could remember which ammo caused the problem. The ammo maker should be informed if the ammo was out of spec.

  3. #3
    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
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    Default My experience with bullets lodged in the barrel

    The same thing happened to me with my .458, and it ended up being a small fleck of rust that pulled the bullet out when I opened the bolt. You might check that out too.

    -Mike
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  4. #4
    Member BucknRut's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FarmerGrant View Post
    ...So now I always cycle all of my shells through the rifle, making sure I can extract them after I chamber them. I had never even though of this before untill it happened.

    So is this a basic thing that I never learned to do? I have never heard of it happening before. Maybe this will keep someone from having the same problem.
    I had a similar problem with my ol' man's 30-06 auto. He always shot Rem core's (which I didn't care for), but one particular box held a pattern like I had never seen out of that gun...I was pegging holes inside of holes on paper. While that was all good, it also held onto the shell if you didn't discharge it before pulling it...problematic when ready to head home for a hot supper.

    The thought never occurred to me at the time, but I bet that particular box was a bit generous on tolerences, because he never had that problem again (I did convinced him to try other makes and he settled on Federal ammo). The old woodsmaster will still shoot 1" patterns, but interesting thought.

    Great idea on racking your ammo prior to the hunt...always looking for ways to eliminate errors in the field.

    Good Shootin
    Joshua

  5. #5

    Default Stuck Bullet

    Been there, done that. Mine was a handload that had been cycled through before. I am sure something got in the barrel when I was walkig through the brush. I have an aluminum rod taped to my back pack or in camp in case it ever happens again.

  6. #6
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    Default

    Well I looked and I can't find any of the problem bullets, it's been a few years.

    Just thought I'd pass this on. I'm sure it's not a common problem, but it could be a very serious one in certain situations.

    Cheers.

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