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Thread: Buffalo Bore 454 Casull ammo

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    Member marshall's Avatar
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    Default Buffalo Bore 454 Casull ammo

    I took my 454 Casull Ruger Alaskan to the range yesterday for a little punishment.

    Cabellas didn't have any Grizzly Ammo so I bought Buffalo Bore, both are hard cast 360gr. The first two rounds were duds, they didn't fire!

    I rotated the cylinder and tried again, one went off and the other would not fire. After three attempts I gave up and put it away. Thank god this wasn't a late late tent invasion from a big brown critter.

    I emailed Buffalo Bore about the incident and they said my gun was the problem. I responded with a series of questions and they assured me that the Ruger firing pin was inadequate and the spring pressure was to soft to fire a CCI primer, evidently they use CCI, that's fine with me, so do I.

    I have shot hundreds of Grizzly Ammo bullets through this revolver so I called Grizzly and spoke directly with the owner of that company today. He told me that they also uses CCI primers specifically because they handle higher pressures than Federal, most reloaders know that CCI is thicker skinned.

    Note: I've never had a Grizzly Ammo round miss fire.

    If any of you Alaska hunters are carrying Buffalo Bore ammo beware!

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    Default That sucks...

    Man, that sucks. I would be PO'd too.

    I have used the Buffalo Bore in .44 Special, 45-70, and 500 S&W. Shot hundreds of rounds of Buffalo Bore and never had any issues at all. Why it is not working in your gun, I have no idea. Perhaps a bad batch or something. Not sure, but I have never seen or heard of anyone having this problem before with Buffalo Bore. Top notch stuff from my experiences.
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

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    It's about the 15th bad batch of BB ammo I have heard of in the last 4 months. They always say it's the gun, same story every time. Just BB ammo don't work in the guns and not all BB ammo just from some boxes, sure sounds to me like they have a big problem they need to face before someone does get killed.

    I have been avoiding their ammo as well as recommending other brands for a couple months now and see no reason to change that till they address this.

    Andy

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    First I have ever heard of it.


    I just emailed Buffalo Bore myself. You got me curious. I am interested to hear how they respond.

    Ammo dependability is the last thing I want to be thinking about if I need to use it
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

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    Member marshall's Avatar
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    Dead Hunter found in tent with gun near buy...

    Primer had evidence of firing pin hit. My wife would be set for life weather it was Ruger or Buffalo, either way bad news.

    I trust my reloads for hunting but I choose manufactured rounds for critical defense, go figure...

  6. #6
    Member marshall's Avatar
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    Here is the response:



    Subject: Re: New Contact Request: Bad Ammo???

    We use CCI 450 primers that we buy new from the factory in huge batches, in our 454 ammo. We've had issues with some Redhawks not having enough main spring to ignite CCI primers. The CCI primers are not out of spec, but are on the hard end of the tolerance. The Redhawk (although you did not state what revolver you have) has a weaker than normal mainspring--Ruger knows this but has never corrected it, so just because your gun fired other brands of primers, does NOT mean that the problem is with the CCI primer. I do this for a living and am intimately familiar with firing mechanisms and I am constantly amazed at the assumptions folks make.

    First, you are wrong when you wrote " I did not have the need to fire this weapon with your ammo"--you did have a need to fire your individual gun with our ammo or with ANY AMMO you plan to use. Not all firearms are compatible with all ammo and to assume so can get some one killed or hurt.

    If you have had any type of action or trigger work done on your gun, CCI primers will not reliably ignite. We could switch brands of primers, but there is not a better primer in the world and the only issues we ever have are with Redhakws that are notorious for weak mainsprings or folks who've had action/trigger work done.

    Tim




    My gun is not modified and fires other ammo just fine. As a matter of fact I called Grizzly Ammo and they said they too use CCI primers. I have a call into Ruger, they generally back their stuff really well. I'm curious what they have to say about this.

    Don't boycott Buffalo Ammo because of me but be sure to test their ammo in your firearm if you plan to carry it in the field.

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    Default .454 Buffalo Bore HC 360grain

    I have the same Ruger Super Redhawk AK that I carry.

    My last box of BB HC 360 was bought about June of last year, what I didn't need in the summer I have gone through most of that box without one bit of a problem. . .

    however, my friend bought a Ruger Super Redhawk long barrel and the guy he bought it from sold it to him with extra BB HC 360, and the guy claimed the 20 rounds he had fired had been reloaded "extra hot"

    We went through most of that ammo at the range the next day, and 2 of the BB HC rounds primer had full indentation, and compared to the casings out of my AK the same depth. These primers BB is using are junk.

    I feel confident with the ammo that I have from last year, but I will NOT buy any more BB ammo until I know this situation is cleared. Heck, with their customer service I'm unlikely to ever buy again!

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    Thatís the same email I have read a couple other times now and never the same brand of gun twice. First was a S&W 44mag, then a Tours 45LC and Magnum Research 45LC, now your Ruger 454 . . . all have been the subject of that basic email.

    This line was in every one of the emails I have seen posted on the forums.
    "The only issues we ever have are with (Insert gun model) that are notorious for weak mainsprings or folks who've had action/trigger work done.Ē

    If I was a BB I would say send me all the ammo in question so I can do some testing and ask where and when you got it or a copy of the receipt so I could tell. Foe the customers help I would send him a coupon good for twice the ammo he sent me and maybe some key chine or do-dad for his good will. If itís just the one guy you spread good will and he will tell others how great you were and how you are trying. If itís just the one kind of gun I go to CCI and the gun maker and resolve it so my ammo will work in that gun!!! If itís several gun makes and brands I have a sit down with CCI and see why they sold me junk primers.

    What I donít do is send a condescending email back to the customer that only wants what I sold him/her to work like I said it would. If I did that I would expect that with some luck I may get away with it a couple times before it starts getting posted all over the internet. The only reason I can think I may take this tact is frustration at not being able to fix the problem, or even worse not wanting to believe the problem exists in the face of overwhelming evidence.

    Whatever is going on I am recommending other brands and not using BB myself until there is a change of attitude about service and some willingness to at least look into complaints of a defective product.

    Marshall itís not just because you had this problem but that so many have and BB does not seem to care.

    Andy

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    ADfields,

    I spoke on the phone with the owner of Grizzly Ammo, first class stand up guy. He would not say one bad word about Buffalo Bore. He did say that he also loads with CCI and he has not had any reports from the field about Ruger miss fires with his ammo.

    Personally I don't think it's the primer. I think it is something in Buffalo Bores loading process that is killing his loads, perhaps contamination.

    When I bought the BB ammo it was the only hard cast 454 ammo on the shelf, seems that others purchased the Grizzly first. Perhaps there is more to it than just a nice box

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    Another reply from Buffalo Bore. According to him it seems that Ruger is the problem.

    Somehow I doubt that, I think that a manufacture would extensively test their product with a large array of commercially available ammo. I'm waiting for a reply from Ruger...



    Here's the BB response;

    A lot of folks have spoken to Ruger--it's helped nothing. Here's the problem: The Redhawk was first made in 44 mag. and 45 colt, both of which use large pistol primers. When Ruger started to chamber the 454 in the Redhawk, they failed to take into consideration that the small rifle primer required in the 454 cartridge was harder to ignite than large pistol primers. Among other things, Ruger should have used a smaller firing pin for the smaller primer as the smaller pin would have a smaller "foot print" and not spread the energy of the pin strike like the bigger pin does aaannnnd Ruger should be using a stronger main spring in the 454 chambered guns too like we discussed already.

    Yes I've been dealing with the Redhawk firing mechanism for a long long long time and have burnt countless hours explaining it to folks who blame the ammo without knowing the nuances of the Redhawk.

    Any way, take care and God bless.

    Tim

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    I should have looked more carefully at this ammo. After thinking about it I examined the duds. It appears that the primers are seated to deep. This prevents the firing pin from making a solid deep impact. My firing pin strike is nicely centered in the primer.

    I've asked for Murphy to take a look, perhaps he can shed some light on this topic and not make me look stupid.
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    Assuming you start with spec cases, why would a primer seat too deep if it was also to spec? Could this be just of poor quality control issue?

    I've not used BB, but I have had strange results where one revolver had problems with off the rack ammo and another not. I first assumed it was revolver malfunction, but then wondered about primer depth.

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    I guess the primers could be to short, I've never seen that before. Perhaps the primer pockets were cut to deep by Star line, I doubt that. More likely the Buffalo Bore prep process slipped out of spec that day. Either way there should be a quality control measure that catches stuff like this.

    I'm a little embarrassed that I just assumed it was good and loaded it. I'll never do that again.

    Bye the way, I dug out all my previous 454 brass and found that Grizzly and HSM also use Star Line brass. The fired brass primers are flush but that is most likely from the firing process so no way to compare at this time.

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    There is a big thread hear from Christmas time about a S&W 44 and BB ammo. He had deep primers also just like you describe and posted Tim's email. I will see if I can find it and link it here.

    Andy

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    Arrow You are not the only one.

    Here it is, read from post #1 and I think you will see a striking similarity to your experience with the BB ammo. There are other such posts on other gun websites also, all with surprisingly similar details. My guess is BBís equipment is oil contaminating the primers somehow.

    http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...ad.php?t=43472

    Andy

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    I think I remember another Super Redhawk in 454 with ths same problem as well as the thread with the 44 in the S&W 329. I think I was involved in another also but don't recall the gun or caliber there.

    I also am no stranger to; the 454 and small rifle primers, CCI primers in general or the Ruger Redhawk or Super Redhawk.

    I have shot many, many guns with CCI primers. I have done a lot of trigger work on Rugers of all models and though I've not shot very much Buffalo Bore ammo. After reading the responses from Buffalo Bore I will admit that the ammo is suspect but I have to say in general I agree with Tim Sundles.

    I do believe there is a common problem with the Ruger Super Redhawk, not so much with the Redhawk. (It isn't required fire rifle primers so it doesn't show up). I think there is also an ignition issue with some of the ultra lite S&W's but I cannot confirm this not having enough in hand to test them thoroughly.

    I've shot Buffalo bore in 44 mag, 44 spcl, 45 Colt and 454. I have never had a misfire with any of these but none have been light weight S&W's or Super Redhawks. I did shoot a batch or two of 44 mag in each of three Redhawk 44's I had last summer. ALL of these had lighter mainsprings in them and longer firing pins, with some other modes to improve ignition reliablity. I have shot the 44 spcl in older N-frame S&W's and 45 Colt and 454 in Ruger Blackhawks, Freedom Arms and Bowen custom guns.

    I have had ignition problems with Super Redhawks in 454 caliber shooting 454 and 45 Colt ammo from makers other than BB.

    What is the problem? I think Sundles is right about the gun(s) but cannot say for sure it is main spring tension but that may well be a consideration. I believe the diameter of the pin and the small hard CCI rifle primer and the main spring are incompatable. The mass of the hammer, the transfer bar thickness, the length of the firing pin, the firing pin spring, the main spring, and possibly the sign of the moon may well affect this phenomenon and it seems that when certain components caome together in the saem gun we have problems.

    I have used a million CCI primers. I've said this before but I just do not see bad primers, from any maker. I use more primers than any 50 handloaders I know of and I don't find bad primers. So much so that I immediately suspect the gun should there be a misfire.

    I have also examined many guns, all types that their owners claimed to have bad ammo and found gun problems that were rather easy to fix. These include one particular S&W 629 which I loaded some hard cast ammo for, then the owner brought the ammo back and wanted his money back which I gave him. I then asked to see his gun which he claimed worked with all other ammo. The nose of the hammer was broken off and missing, gone. Nothing could even reach the primer, no pin at all. I kept the ammo and shot it in three or four guns and guess what, it worked fine.

    This doesn't mean much and has nothing to do with the current problem except it rarely is the primer.

    I will facilitate a test of BB ammo in whatever capacity I can, in whatever caliber. I will also fix any Super Redhawk that will volunteer to be a culprit with this ammo. I can replace parts and there is another improvement technique that will help the gun, it is a modification of the hammer.

    If we continue to single out and blame BB ammo for the problem there will be no testing and we won't find out for sure who or what is at fault.
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    We have built more 50 Alaskan rifles than any company ever.

    When we built the first run, we contracted with Hunting Shack to build the ammo, the first 50ak ammo commercially available...never a problem

    Foward a few years, we get reports that BB 50 Ak ammo isnt working in our guns. We bring this to the attention of BB, and are told it is a problem with our guns

    So the upshot: we make the guns and the ammo for several years and ev erything works fine. BB comes along, decides to make the ammo which doesnt work, and blames it on us.

    Buy Cor Bon

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    Quote Originally Posted by marshall View Post
    I should have looked more carefully at this ammo. After thinking about it I examined the duds. It appears that the primers are seated to deep. This prevents the firing pin from making a solid deep impact. My firing pin strike is nicely centered in the primer.

    I've asked for Murphy to take a look, perhaps he can shed some light on this topic and not make me look stupid.
    That looks like a strong enough hit to fire it but I cannot tell. Did you hit that one twice? Also it looks as though the primer is seated very deep just from the picture. All the tollerances are well established. The pocket must be a certain depth, the primer cup must be a certain height, and technically the seating must be to the bottom for the primer to fire. I'd like to try that primer in another gun and I have a way to test the primer to see if it will still fire regardless of howmanytimes it has been hit. It involves a match. A primer can mechanically fail. I've seen them (in factory ammo) to be missing the anvil or have the anvil in sideways and smashed. Also the anvil can be wrong size. The cup is supposed to be a certain thickness, usually not a problem but also a certain anneal to allow the striker to collapse it on the anvil.

    Wildalaska, You make a good case there. It certainly points to defective ammo. To be honest though I have trouble figuring out how somebody can screw up making ammo so that it won't fire.

    We have seen claims on here of several calibers failing with BB ammo and that desn't fit with my experience. It has been my claim that the Super Redhawk only has the problems, not any S&W or lever gun or even the Redhawk and certainly not the Blackhawk. That wouldn't fit with any bad batch because we are using small rifle (454), large rifle (50 Alaskan), large pistol mag (44mag, 45Colt) and large pistol standard (44 Spcl). So what is it that is common? If you had one loader that made bad ammo by seating primers improperly, that wouldn't show in other machines (calibers). What is the common thread. We need to get all these guns together and run another test with different primers/ammo. Can we put this together?

    I could talk to Sundles after we come up with something with the tests.

    Who is in Fairbanks with a gun that fails to fire BB ammo? I have a 45 Colt, 44 Spcl and 454 guns with proven good track record of positive ignition and I will buy some ammo but won't put a lot of money into this, I don't shoot factory ammo, except for these kind of tests. I will tell you that the caliber most likely to fail to fire is the 454, because of the hard, small rifle (CCI-450) primer. Also I've fired thousands of rounds of 454 ammo (handloads) in a dozens of guns and never had a misfire that I can ever recall.

    It has been said here several times that the gun that wouldn't fire the BB ammo fired other brands and I understand that but it doesn't meant the ammo is out of spec. It could still mean the gun is marginal in some way.

    More later, let me know what you think.
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    I shoot BB in my 44, 460 and 45/70 and have never had a problem. What I do have a problem with is the response from BB. Sound kind of arrogant. For what the ammo costs and the amount of people that use it in Ak, I would expect a bit more customer service.

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    Murphy I have a thought . . . OUCH . . . anyway, I was just thinking the fact that you go through so many primers could be why you never see primer problems. You have fresh new primers that have not sat around for oils migrate through them. Then there are guys like my brother that picked up 20K primers back in 1982 and still has half of them on his shelf. I don't think BB has old primers sitting so age likely is not in play here.

    Also Iím glad to see you will be testing, my majored peeve with BB here is that he wonít check it out with testing and stand behind the product. Yes it may be the guns, but they sold a product for those same guns and if it does not work buy it back or otherwise work with your customer. Just sending condescending emails to them, be professional and explain whatís going on as well as what you are doing to fix it. Tim has done the same thing with a number of people so I have no reason to think if I have a problem I will receive anything more than condensation from BB.

    Andy

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