How important is sealant on a round?

This is a discussion on How important is sealant on a round? within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; In the wake of Irene we thought it would be interesting to submerge 4 different brands of 7.62x39 under water for 5 days, then open ...

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Thread: How important is sealant on a round?

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    New Member Array GoldenTiger's Avatar
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    How important is sealant on a round?

    In the wake of Irene we thought it would be interesting to submerge 4 different brands of 7.62x39 under water for 5 days, then open up the rounds and see the results.

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    VIP Member Array glockman10mm's Avatar
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    Not realy seeing the point in that other than curiosity. I have placed ammo in a glass of water for a few hours. to see the results, but realisically, I don't see myself or ammo under water any longer than that.
    Ignorance is a long way from stupid, but left unchecked, can get there real fast.

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    VIP Member Array Majorlk's Avatar
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    The photos are "interesting" but did you try firing any of it? I also note you used non-US ammo for the test.

    I have submerged US ammo, both pistol and rifle, in a bucket of water for a week and did not see any evidence of water seepage and all the ammo shot just fine.
    An armed society is a polite society. Manners are good when one may have to back up his acts with his life. - Robert A. Heinlein

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    Member Array ConcealedG30's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Majorlk View Post
    The photos are "interesting" but did you try firing any of it? I also note you used non-US ammo for the test.

    I have submerged US ammo, both pistol and rifle, in a bucket of water for a week and did not see any evidence of water seepage and all the ammo shot just fine.
    Thats why I buy it. Shoot it. Reload it. Do it again.... and again... and again!
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    Water intrusion comes mostly from leakage around the primer, not the bullet.

    Military ammo has both primer sealant and sealant around the bullet, not sure about foreign country stuff though. Alot of the african and european stuff sucks compared to ours.
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    I guess it isn't important at all as I have never put sealant of any sort on a handload and haven't had any misfires in 35 years. Am not going to begin putting sealant on my ammunition now.
    “No possible rapidity of fire can atone for habitual carelessness of aim with the first shot.”

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    VIP Member Array dukalmighty's Avatar
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    If my wife caught me using her fingernail polish to seal bullets,the next test would be how to extract sealed bullets from your rectum
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    Quote Originally Posted by HotGuns View Post
    Water intrusion comes mostly from leakage around the primer, not the bullet.
    Agreed and Golden Tiger is sealed around both. Very nice inexpensive rounds for use at the range. Can't speak to other circumstances.
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    I have one rifle, an m1a, that I will only use the brass for a certain number of times before destroying the brass. This is due to that particular design being harder than normal on brass. On my last loading I do two things. I use cheap military hardball bullets and also seal the primer with enamel. Both allow me to instantly recognize the rounds as not to be reloaded again. Also the sealer should offer some moisture protection if the worst should happen during storage or handling. Typically I squirrel these rounds away as my SHTF ammo so no telling how long they will be stored.

    Michael

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    VIP Member Array Majorlk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HotGuns View Post
    Water intrusion comes mostly from leakage around the primer, not the bullet.
    I'd love to see something definitive to support that. Box 'O Truth sat WD-40 on inverted cases and after a week there was no leakage through the primer pocket, and WD-40 is far more invasive than water.

    Moisture leakage in loaded ammo is more urban legend than fact, even in long-term humid storage conditions.

    If sealing primers and bullets makes one feel better, then by all means do it. The reality, though, is that for 99.9 percent of ammo in civilian situations it has no effect.
    An armed society is a polite society. Manners are good when one may have to back up his acts with his life. - Robert A. Heinlein

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    Ex Member Array ZappBranigan's Avatar
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    If I ever go shooting underwater I will definitely seal my primers, but I generally don't use firearms when I scuba dive
    IAm_Not_Lost likes this.

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    I read that to do a good test of waterproofing, put a single layer of rounds flat in a baking dish and submerge with boiling water. If you see any bubbles (heat expands air, pressurizing case) you know that round is not waterproof.

    They said to seal primers, place rounds in a box primers up. Then dip a toothpick in thin varnish or nail polish and run the end around the primer groove and leave to dry.

    To seal bullets is tougher. They said before you charge the cases, use tree sealer on a Q-Tip and "roll" not "drag" it around the inside lip and let it dry for a day or so. test dryness by charging a round. Powder should not stick to sealer. If okay proceed as usual.

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    VIP Member Array Superhouse 15's Avatar
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    I submerged ammo in WD-40, salt water, and Hoppes #9 for five weeks plus and had almost no failures of centerfire ammo. Some, but not all, of the .22lr I tried failed. None of the .22mag or .17HMR failed. I used range FMJ and lead as well as premium JHP.

    I have also occasionally washed ammo by accident. The odd round of ammo sometimes comes home in my work clothes from the gunshop. I make it a point to fire all of it and so far only one round of crimped-tip .22 snakeshot has failed.
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    VIP Member Array Majorlk's Avatar
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    I think the idea that ammo is somehow fragile and prone to being "damaged" is due to watching too many Hollywood movies and CSI-type shows. The ballistic/firearms information on this shows contain a significant amount of B.S.

    The other reason is a hold over from the black powder days. Black powder and the early smokeless powders absorbed water and getting them wet rendered them inert. Modern powers do not absorb water and are unaffected by it. You can take a quantity of modern powder and dump it in a bucket of water and leave it there. Pour off the water and pour the powder on the ground and touch a match to it and it will burn just like is does straight out of the can.

    Primers, I don't know about, with all the changes in formulations in the last decade or so.
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    Quote Originally Posted by glockman10mm View Post
    Not realy seeing the point in that other than curiosity.
    Look at the user name & the brand of ammo advertised... That will explain the point... welcome to a 37 second long commercial...
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