Accidental Discharge Ruger Mark III

This is a discussion on Accidental Discharge Ruger Mark III within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Yesterday I went shooting at an outdoor range with my buddy. We were shooting our various pistols and having a great time, that is until ...

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Thread: Accidental Discharge Ruger Mark III

  1. #1
    VIP Member Array rammerjammer's Avatar
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    Thumbs down Accidental Discharge Ruger Mark III

    Yesterday I went shooting at an outdoor range with my buddy. We were shooting our various pistols and having a great time, that is until I got my Ruger Mark III out to shoot.

    I loaded up my two magazines, 10 rounds apiece. I inserted the first magazine and then came trouble. I pulled back the bolt to sling shot the first round into the chamber. When I let go of the bolt it shot forward and the pistol fired, not once but five times!

    I was abiding by appropriate gun handling rules; my finger was off the trigger and thank goodness I had the pistol pointing safely down range. The shots sounded like one burst, like a machine gun. You could not hear individual shots, just one loud burp sound (not exactly like the German MG-42 of WWII but similar sound).

    I immediately investigated what caused this and cleared the pistol. I ejected the magazine and from the original 10 rounds in it there were only 4 left. I pulled back the bolt to check for any rounds in the chamber and there was one unfired round loaded. I cleared that round and the bolt was stuck. After some effort to pull the bolt back and not having any success, we decided to put the .22 away and not shoot it until it has been looked over by a gunsmith or sent back to Ruger for repairs.

    Once I got home I was able to disassemble the pistol but still had troubles retracting the bolt. I believe something has gone awry with the hammer and it was out of place making it impossible to remove the bolt until the hammer had been manually moved into a proper position. I have attempted to reassemble the pistol but to no avail, I can't get it back together. I cannot get the main spring housing reinserted and once again I believe the hammer is out of place and inhibiting proper functions of the pistol.

    This whole event has really got me spooked. I have had this pistol for 6 years now and fired thousands of rounds through it never having anything even close to this happen to me. I know that in most cases there really are no accidental discharges, just negligent ones. But in my case I know that I was following gun handling safety rules, finger off the trigger, barrell pointed downrange and knowing what was beyond my "target". I have never had a gun fire like it did in this case and thank goodness I was following proper safety precautions otherwise there could have been very serious repurcussions.

    I even asked my buddy who was watching me the whole time to determine whether or not I had been following appropriate rules and posssibly slipped up but he said that I had not done anything out of the ordinary or unsafe. He was just as astonished as I was by the event. As he put it, "if you had been doing something wrong, stupid, unsafe or negligent, we would be having a whole other discussion and you would be walking home."

    This event reminded me of the documentary I saw on CNBC about Remington 700s and their accidental discharges.


    I am going to contact Ruger and see what they have to say. I called earlier today but apparently they were closed at the time.

    I would appreciate anyone elses comments, experiences or recommnedations. I will make updates when I know more.

    Thanks

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  3. #2
    VIP Member Array ctsketch's Avatar
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    Very scary...I'd still want to bring it a smith to find out *** happened
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  4. #3
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    Glad no one was hurt and all safety procedures were followed. Had a similar occurrence a long time ago with a Bersa 22, I had dropped a round into the chamber then released the slide. When the slide slammed home the round fired. Problem was traced to a stuck firing pin, luckily I had not inserted the mag or it may have fired all ten rounds. Absolutely have a smith check it out or send it back to Ruger for repairs.
    When you have to shoot, shoot. Don't talk.
    "Don't forget, incoming fire has the right of way."

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    Distinguished Member Array pinklady's Avatar
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    I am glad no one was hurt.

  6. #5
    VIP Member Array rammerjammer's Avatar
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    I have contacted Ruger and am planning to send it back. Should I take it to a local gunsmith before I send it back or just let Ruger handle the problem?

  7. #6
    Senior Member Array hayzor's Avatar
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    Ruger.
    The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it. Albert Einstein

    "People in Arizona carry guns," said a Chandler police spokesman. "You better be careful about who you are picking on."

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    Since you have already contacted I would go ahead and let them make the repairs.
    When you have to shoot, shoot. Don't talk.
    "Don't forget, incoming fire has the right of way."

  9. #8
    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    This is referred to as a 'Slam Fire' condition.

    Look at the firing pin on this gun.
    It very likely is broken and was, is, protruding when you dropped the bolt onto the first round.
    Each subsequent firing resulted because the firing pin remained protruding.
    This can and does happen on most any autoloader that has a broken firing pin.
    .22s in specific are more susceptible to this because the firing pin is light and narrow metal. This is why many of the old school and various mfrs. too do not suggest that .22s be dry fired without a dead casing or snap cap being placed in the chamber to absorb the energy of a hammer drop on to the firing pin. Firing pins of this sort (.22) can and do fracture from dry fire use, especially if left to hit the breech face rather than a casing.

    Another potential cause is a worn out firing pin spring....Net would/could be the same result.

    That you report this gun as being six years old and having fired thousands of rounds through it very much supports the theory of quite simply a broken firing pin and/or a worn firing pin spring.
    Break the gun down and inspect both...Then replace them. This should be part of your standard maintenance and cleaning anyway.
    As well firing pins and firing pin springs are wearable items that are to be replaced with age...Some say every two years with high use firearms and every 5 or so years with those that see less use.

    This is not an issue with the gun by it's design nor an issue with the mfr.
    It is most commonly a failure of operator maintenance (negligence).

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slamfire
    http://www.instructables.com/id/Ruge...-and-Assembly/

    - Janq

    P.S. - Oppositely if you were to pull the trigger and get no discharge even as the hammer has gone 'click', only to manually eject the unfired round and see an indentation in the rim. Repeat times 3 or 5 for same...Then that is what is called a 'light strike' and is result of a worn firing pin face.
    This too ocurrs with guns that have high mileage. Once again it's an operator involved part inspection requirement that is supposed to be done as part of normal product maintenance.
    You replace the firing pin, and always the firing pin spring along with it, and from there move on with life.
    "Killers who are not deterred by laws against murder are not going to be deterred by laws against guns. " - Robert A. Levy

    "A license to carry a concealed weapon does not make you a free-lance policeman." - Florida Div. of Licensing

  10. #9
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    Word of the day, "Slam Fire" Glad it wasn't any worse than a damaged pistol.
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  11. #10
    Member Array KWAG's Avatar
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    Slam Fire.....WOW!

  12. #11
    Member Array KWAG's Avatar
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    I must say, a day doesnt go by on this forum I dont learn something usefull!

  13. #12
    VIP Member Array rammerjammer's Avatar
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    Thanks for the informative response Jang.

  14. #13
    VIP Member Array jbum's Avatar
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    Yeppers sounds like a slam fire.... happened to me once with a 10-22 scared the pajesus out of me.

  15. #14
    VIP Member Array BugDude's Avatar
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    Word of the day: "Slamfire"

    I hope I don't have one of these. Sounds uncool...as if it would require a change of undergarments.
    Know Guns, Know Safety, Know Peace.
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    Guns are like sex and air...its no big deal until YOU can't get any.

  16. #15
    VIP Member Array AZ Husker's Avatar
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    Don't waste your money on a private smith. Let Ruger handle it. Hopefully they'll send you a shipping tag.
    Treat me good, I'll treat you better. Treat me bad, I'll treat you worse.

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