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Reloading Kaboom - Please lear from my experience
I'm still a newb here and have been really enjoying my 10/22's alot, and have even gotten the gf a 10/22 which she goes and shoots with me occasionally.
Like most of you, our firearm hobby doesn't stop at rimfires. Assuredly, most also have centerfires and a certain percentage of that probably reloads. This thread is for those individuals.
I'll post links to 2 other forums that have the full blown explanation threads....no sense in completely rehashing this again here, except for the facts to help fellow reloaders out with.
A little about myself: I'm a 34 y/o CA boy that relocated to AZ about 4 years ago. About 6 months ago, I entered the world of firearms by purchasing my first: a Mosin Nagant. I was hooked. I blasted off into my new hobby with fervor and money.....oh god some money! My collection spreads from the Mosin, to precision and basic AR's, single action revolvers, a couple semi auto pistols, and of course, the beloved 10/22's. Did I mention I'm hooked. I still work in Los Angeles as a fireman/paramedic.......I mention this to help explain my attention to detail, OCD, and general appreciation for safety and NOT cutting corners.
Three months ago I got into reloading, a whole other hobby in it's own. A very rewarding hobby, I might add. I bought a progressive, appreciating it's engineering and output, did very well with it from the day I opened the box. .38, .380 acp, .223, and 9mm to name what I'm reloading.
A few days ago (11/2/11) I went to convert my press from .223 rem to .38 spl. While ramping it up for .38, I began to pick up 50 primers with the pickup tube, rotated it, placed on the press with my left hand, pulled the pin to release the primers, and Kaboom!
The explosion happened before I completely remove the pin, so the primers didn't move but maybe a mm. There was trauma to 2 fingers (both fingers had dime size holes blown in them), thru & thru holes in the ceiling, and burnt primers throughout the room as far as they could go.
I was angry and confused that day. How in the hell did this happen (I thought). I really didn't mishandle the primers, didn't cut any corners, I just couldn't see how this happened.......it was killing me!
The ER doc suggested it might have been static electricity. It got me thinkng and researching. It was the only logical explanation as far as I knew. The RH that day was 15% on avg, 10% at lowest, and there was a dry wind all day with a few finger tip shocks on doorknobs.
I talked to the press manufacturer and they stated it could have been that OR one defective primer. They did say, however, they've never heard of primers going off at that phase of handling before.
It's still unconclusive, so for now, I'm grounding the press, the tube, and myself in the future, and am trying to devise a type of shielded (not reinforced) pickup tube for the future.
This could have been a career ender for me but wasn't, thank god. Some things that were of the "no harm, no foul" variety but I'll still do differently from now on:
-Eye protection ALL the time (even during the simplest of tasks) I wear mine during other phases usually, but never wore them during the pickup tube part of the transfer.
-No more reloading in the house (again, no harm, no foul, but this could have been worse if someone was home with me)
-No more allowing other people to reaload (I've let the gf pick up primers before and release them into the magazine.....no more of that. Also, some people let their buddy whose considering getting into reloading, to try out their press. I won't do eitherin the future)
<<<Forgot to post up the other forum links>>> Here they are:
Anyway, please be even more safe and aware than I'm sure you already are. Even the things you don't see can and will bite you.
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