My pistol blew up today - pics added

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RoneKiln
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My pistol blew up today - pics added

Post by RoneKiln » Sun Nov 29, 2015 3:08 am

Two is one and one is none.

Today my glock 23 blew up as I was shooting at the range. The barrel is missing most of its top, and the rest is jammed an inch farther down into the lower receiver than it should be. The magazine, extractor, and mag release all blew out (we did not find the extractor). The lower frame is warped out from the barrel remnants being smashed down into it. The upper receiver is close to 3/16ths of an inch farther from the lower than it should be. I assume the rails it used to slide on are ruined, but they are still intact enough to hold the upper receiver firmly. The trigger is partially shattered as well.

My belief, supported by the gunsmith, is that the bullet had a double charge of powder in it.

My injuries were ridiculously minor given how completely the pistol was wrecked. I am a very blessed man. That pistol was my carry piece for 15 years, and when it finally died, it still protected me from harm. It scared my Dad pretty bad to see his son's handgun explode.

A lesson really reinforced was ALWAYS WEAR EYE PROTECTION! I received three nicks. Two of them on the face and one on my hand. I don't think anything hit my glasses, but it was a great reminder.

Not sure I will go shooting alone anytime soon. I used to quite often. I was confident I wasn't going to do anything stupid to myself. I never seriously considered someone or some machine in a factory could make an error that could make something dangerous happen to me. My trigger was partially shattered, yet somehow my finger was unharmed. A lower quality handgun or less luck and I could have had a finger blown off. Not sure how far I could drive myself with my finger(s) blown off. This time I was at an indoor range in the city, but I am often at an outdoor gravel pit without reliable cell service. So that's my second lesson; take someone with you.

Not sure what else there is to learn from this. I won't state the manufacturer of the ammo till they have a chance to respond to my communication to them. They are a reputable manufacturer and everyone at the range was surprised to hear I had been using their ammo when it happened. Unfortunately we had just ordered 5000 rounds for my Dad and he is now very wary of it.

Which reminds me of another possible lesson. I save order invoices/receipts for large purchases like this. I was able to tell the manufacturer (I bought it directly from them) which order number it was, which may help them identify which batch it came from. I don't know if it will help or make a difference, but it gives them some sort of starting point.

If anyone else thinks of any other good lessons from this, please speak up. If anyone expresses interest, I will take the time later to figure out posting pictures.
Last edited by RoneKiln on Fri Dec 04, 2015 12:42 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: My pistol blew up today

Post by rednekrampager » Sun Nov 29, 2015 6:00 am

Glad you're ok. Look on the box of ammo you used & see if it has a lot # on it. Give that info to the manufacture & it can narrow their search for any other ammo in that same lot for defects.
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Re: My pistol blew up today

Post by Stercutus » Sun Nov 29, 2015 6:08 am

A lesson really reinforced was ALWAYS WEAR EYE PROTECTION!

AMEN.

Just curious if you checked your other rounds for set back?
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Re: My pistol blew up today

Post by RoneKiln » Sun Nov 29, 2015 11:45 am

What is set back? I have not studied ammo manufacturing as much as I should.

We visually examined the rest of the ammo and it looked normal. The only other oddity was four rounds of the ten shortly before the explosive one failed to fire. Which I have never experienced with this ammo or this pistol. I was debating if I need to buy a new firing pin spring due to that. I have put a lot of rounds through that pistol.

We fired several hundred more rounds through other pistols and my carbine without further incident.
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Re: My pistol blew up today

Post by Stercutus » Sun Nov 29, 2015 12:58 pm

Set back is when the bullet becomes recessed into the brass potentially causing an overpressure situation. Most often this comes from loading and unloading the top round in the magazine but can also be caused by improper ammunition storage or handling. 40 seems to be especially vulnerable to this.

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Re: My pistol blew up today

Post by Paladin1 » Sun Nov 29, 2015 2:28 pm

Glad your OK.

I wonder if there is anyway to prove it was double charged ammo? Maybe pull the bullets from some of the same stock?

Might get a new gun out of it.
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Re: My pistol blew up today

Post by TheWarriorMax » Sun Nov 29, 2015 5:07 pm

Pics or it didn't happen...
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Re: My pistol blew up today

Post by RoneKiln » Mon Nov 30, 2015 12:28 am

Thanks Stercutus. If any were set back, it was extremely minimal. I could see that damaging the pistol, but this was a pretty spectacular blow up. I will get some pics up later this week.

I really can't even prove I was shooting the manufacturers ammo. I have the shell casing. I have the wrecked pistol, but how do I "prove" anything? I am hoping they call the range it happened at to verify my claim, then step up and offer a few cases of ammo to offset the value of the pistol and keep a large family of loyal customers. I don't expect them to run out and buy me a new pistol.

Thanks for the well wishes. They mean more than I thought they would.
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Re: My pistol blew up today

Post by JeeperCreeper » Mon Nov 30, 2015 12:33 am

Glad you are safe, that is a scary situation.

Any chance Glock may throw some kind of factory-direct-pricing at you for a new gun since they had a few issues with Glock .40 KaBooms in the past??
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Re: My pistol blew up today

Post by RoneKiln » Fri Dec 04, 2015 12:28 am

Testing if the picture works. Below should be the picture of the exploded shell.

Image
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Re: My pistol blew up today

Post by RoneKiln » Fri Dec 04, 2015 12:38 am

The test appears to work, so here come pics of the pistol.

Here is the view of the obliterated barrel. What is not obvious from the pic is the barrel is shoved over an inch down into the lower. For those not familiar with Glocks, you should not be able to see through the top of this barrel. You can see the polymer lower is warped out due to the barrel being shoved down into it.

Image

Here you can see the right side of the mag release and the extractor are gone. We never did find the extractor. We found shreds of plastic, but could not tell what was part trigger and what went to the mag release.

Image

A view down the magwell. The small square shape towards the left is the back end of the barrel. You can see it has bent up some other pieces as it blew back. Again, for those not familiar with Glocks, you should not be able to see the barrel in the magwell.

Image

The remaining ammo still in the magazine that blew out.

Image

The ammo manufacturer is being very respectful so far and let me know the data they need to verify everything. I am now waiting on the gunsmith to write up a report.

Edited to correct my left from right.
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Re: My pistol blew up today - pics added

Post by RoneKiln » Fri Dec 04, 2015 12:53 am

Another lesson I learned: If your weapon blows up, accept it.

It took me quite a while to process that my pistol blew up. I stared at it a bit in complete incomprehension. I have been attacked and reacted promptly and decisively. But my pistol blew up in a calm controlled environment and I just sat there in shock. Had this happened in a moment I really needed my pistol, I would have thrown away every chance I had to survive. I just sat there and stared. I had no idea what to do. It was truly beyond anything I ever imagined or prepared for. I deal with stove pipes or failure to fire without thinking. Yet I never imagined this pistol would ever be destroyed.

My brother and I guess it was a good 90 seconds before I turned to them and said " I think my pistol blew up." Note the "think." As obvious as it is, I still wasn't sure. I didn't truly accept reality till a second set of eyes confirmed it for me.

That would have killed me if I truly needed that firearm. If your weapon stops working, accept it and keeping acting as appropriate. Grab a back-up, run, hide, charge, whatever will best protect you and yours. Don't sit there and stare at it.
"Seriously the most dangerous thing you are likely to do is to put salt on a Big Mac right before you eat it and to climb into your car."
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Re: My pistol blew up today - pics added

Post by Stercutus » Fri Dec 04, 2015 2:58 am

Shock can come from a completely unexpected event. I would not beat myself up about it too much.


At least you will be ready for next time... :clap:






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Re: My pistol blew up today - pics added

Post by FlashDaddy » Fri Dec 04, 2015 7:04 am

Wow. You are fortunate not to have been injured. Those pictures are just incredible. I don't know how you could protect yourself from a double charge of powder in a manufactured cartridge. Would the weight difference be enough to clearly show up on a scale? Weighing each cartridge before a shooting session or when loading your mags? Doable?
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Re: My pistol blew up today - pics added

Post by JeeperCreeper » Fri Dec 04, 2015 8:28 am

You think you're going to switch brands or even go all metal just for mental reasons?? Kinda like I've had issues with a brand if car, I'll never buy another because I'm afraid it won't start.

Irrational, yes. But people do it.
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Re: My pistol blew up today - pics added

Post by solarguy » Fri Dec 04, 2015 2:29 pm

People who design modern guns think about these rare but terrible outcomes. It's like crumple zones in cars. They are designed to fail systematically and strategically, protecting the operator as it absorbs and directs the excess energy.

It doesn't always work, or work completely, but it is tremendously better than nothing.

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Re: My pistol blew up today - pics added

Post by ManInBlack316 » Fri Dec 04, 2015 3:27 pm

I'm glad you're okay RoneKiln.
I've been there too, had an SKS blow up on me once.

Have you contacted Glock to see what they'll say about it?

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Re: My pistol blew up today - pics added

Post by RoneKiln » Fri Dec 04, 2015 7:38 pm

JeeperCreeper wrote:You think you're going to switch brands or even go all metal just for mental reasons?? Kinda like I've had issues with a brand if car, I'll never buy another because I'm afraid it won't start.

Irrational, yes. But people do it.
For pistols or ammo? I love my Glocks and have several. This one was just my first, and therefore favorite. I carried it for 15 years before switching to the XDS9. If conditions in my area deteriorated enough, I will switch back to carrying a Glock. When this one blew up I felt heartsick and didn't feel like shooting anymore. I kept shooting with other pieces we had to help mitigate the potential for future fear. I also wanted to reassure my Dad who is still getting familiar with his own handgun.

For the ammo, the manufacturer has an opportunity to earn either my loyalty or hostility for life depending on how they handle this incident. If they either replace the pistol or provide similar value in their product, I will keep using them and speaking highly of them. If they blow me off, I will react opposite. Mistakes happen and I will gauge them by how they respond to their mistake. So far they are being respectful and reasonable.

ManInBlack316, I have not contacted Glock as I do not hold them accountable for this. I am familiar with the problems they had early on with their 40 caliber pistols. That was mostly due to specific types of ammo interacting with a certain design element in the barrel, and did not result in the barrel exploding. I was not using the type of ammo that's an issue. I have another barrel I use if I find real good deals on that type of ammo. My best friend was one of the early Glock users to discover that issue the hard way and he warned me.
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Re: My pistol blew up today - pics added

Post by ManInBlack316 » Fri Dec 04, 2015 7:42 pm

RoneKiln,
I was more meaning to see if they would give you a deal on a new Glock in exchange for them being able to use the testimony of
"Glocks are so safe, even if the ammo blows up on you, it'll still keep you from harm" :clownshoes:
or how about
"Glock Safe Action is safer than your ammo"

I understand what you mean about Glock not being responsible for this at all.

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Re: My pistol blew up today - pics added

Post by RonnyRonin » Fri Dec 04, 2015 9:49 pm

glad you're OK!

Eagerly awaiting the final response from the ammo manufacturer. I shoot a glock 9mm so I'm not super worried but I always had the question in the back of my mind about how I would prove an ammo at fault if something were to happen.

I wouldn't worry too much about your shock response, I don't really think it translates to a similar response under stress. I'm sure anyone would lose a second or two to confusion/disgust/horror but I'm sure there would be lots of friendly reminders to huck the gun in the general direction of the threat and continue with life.
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Re: My pistol blew up today

Post by Phoenix David » Fri Dec 04, 2015 11:35 pm

RoneKiln wrote: The only other oddity was four rounds of the ten shortly before the explosive one failed to fire. .
Was it the 4 right before the boom? Or 4 in random order?
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Re: My pistol blew up today - pics added

Post by RoneKiln » Sat Dec 05, 2015 2:14 am

ManInBlack316 wrote:RoneKiln,
I was more meaning to see if they would give you a deal on a new Glock in exchange for them being able to use the testimony of
"Glocks are so safe, even if the ammo blows up on you, it'll still keep you from harm" :clownshoes:
or how about
"Glock Safe Action is safer than your ammo"

I understand what you mean about Glock not being responsible for this at all.
Ooh, that's not a bad idea. I may follow up on that after dealing with the ammo manufacturer. Thanks for the idea!

Phoenix David, the four that failed to fire were almost every other round before it exploded. Seems odd that they all ended up in the same magazine by luck. We even paused to check the firing pin for wear and discussed the possibility of needing a new firing pin spring. My brother encouraged me to walk downstairs and see if the gunsmith had one in stock to buy. I decided to finish shooting what was in the magazine and a few minutes later it didn't matter anymore.
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Re: My pistol blew up today - pics added

Post by Garand69 » Sat Dec 05, 2015 11:00 pm

RoneKiln wrote: ......the four that failed to fire were almost every other round before it exploded. Seems odd that they all ended up in the same magazine by luck.

Any chance that 4th failure to fire, actually did but never left the barrel? ie squib??
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Re: My pistol blew up today - pics added

Post by RoneKiln » Sun Dec 06, 2015 1:12 am

Don't think so. I still have all four bullets that failed to fire, and I sure hope I would notice the difference in recoil if there was not enough charge for the bullet to leave the barrel.
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