Squib Rounds When All Else Fails, Read The Instructions

Squib Rounds When All Else Fails, Read The Instructions

Squib Round Sticking 1/4 inch out the Muzzel
Squib Round Sticking 1/4 inch out the Barrel
Delaware State Sportsmen’s Association
Delaware State Sportsmen’s Association

Wilmington, DE – -(AmmoLand.com)- The pictured incident occurred during a training session at a shooting club in Delaware and was witnessed by at least eight people.

The shooter was new and had little experience with the gun. The handgun is a snub nose “Air Weight” Smith and Wesson .38 SPL, 5-shot revolver loaded with Remington factory .38 SPL standard velocity .38 SPL ammunition with 158 grain bullets.

On the students third shot, there was a definite lack of recoil and report. Instructors immediately called a cease fire and examined the gun. The result was a squib round with the bullet sticking about 1/4″ out of the barrel.

How did this happen?
The very sharp recoil of these small, light weight revolvers can cause bullets to be partially separated from the case in the chambers during the firing process, resulting in too little pressure to push the bullet out of the barrel, i.e., a “squib” load.

It’s the inertia principle in physics, the heavier bullet tries to remain at rest during recoil, while the cartridge case is pulled away by the recoiling gun. smith & Wesson’s current revolver manual (available on-line at www.smith-wessom.com) instructs the owner of light weight revolvers to conduct a specific test for any ammunition for this potential problem before placing the gun and ammunition combination in regular service.

Had the instructor not recognized the situation and the shooter fired the next round, the result could have been a blown up gun and serious injury to the shooter and others.

There are at least two morals to the story:

  • Read the owner’s manual and other instructions, some are stamped on the barrel, for your firearm before you use it!
  • Just because the ammunition fits in the gun, doesn’t mean it’s right!

The DSSA promotes and protects the interests of gunowners in and around Delaware. If you believe in and want to maintain the private ownership of firearms, or simply hunt and fish, DSSA is for YOU. Visit: blog.delsports.net