Empty case = Snap cap?

This is a discussion on Empty case = Snap cap? within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Im in a position atm where i would like to dry fire my gun and will alot from this point. Will a empty case work? ...

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Thread: Empty case = Snap cap?

  1. #1
    Member Array BillyBeamon's Avatar
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    Empty case = Snap cap?

    Im in a position atm where i would like to dry fire my gun and will alot from this point.
    Will a empty case work? untill i can pick up a snapcap next week?

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  3. #2
    Senior Member Array Rob P.'s Avatar
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    An empty case is no substitute for a snap cap. Using brass is a bad habit to get into as well since there is no visual indicator between live ammo and a "dummy" round.

    Be that as it may, what weapon are you dry firing? For the most part, most modern firearms can be dry fired without problems or needing a dummy cartridge to support the firing pin (what a snap cap does). This means that if you're weapon is fairly new, then you can probably just dry fire it unless the mfg says no to.

    So, again, what weapon are you practicing with?

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    A PT-140 Mil Pro i will be painting the top of the round red with a paint pen

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    To answer your question, using a fired cartridge case as a temporary substitute for a snap cap is okay. Buy some regular snap caps as soon as you can.


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  7. #6
    VIP Member Array Kerbouchard's Avatar
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    Nothing wrong with using spent brass as a snap-cap.

    There are people who are not responsible enough to know if their gun is loaded with live ammo or not, and if you are one of those people, you should probably never touch your trigger unless you absolutely have to, and then you should just hope it goes bang.

    Look, a gun is a tool. It's the same as a screwdriver. If you take your screwdriver and try to hang a picture without any screws you won't get very far, and I would question whether you should own a screwdriver or not.

    Owning and practicing with a weapon is a very serious responsibility. For the people who are not responsible enough to clear their weapon prior to dry-firing, I have no respect and I hope they aren't at the range while I am, because they are simply unsafe.

    You can use spent brass on a rim-fire pistol, or like was mentioned before, most center-fire(yours included) are completely fine with dry-firing with nothing in the chamber.

    A snap-cap is like a trigger lock. We did alright for over 500 years without them, and the world won't come to an end if we don't buy them. It's a manufacturer stunt. Nothing more.

    That being said, snap caps can provide very useful training in failure drills if somebody else randomly loads your magazines so that you won't know when the 'failure' will occur.

    IMO, failure drills are the only place where snap-caps have a place, but it sure must be nice to create a market where little to no need exists.
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  8. #7
    Member Array BillyBeamon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerbouchard View Post
    Nothing wrong with using spent brass as a snap-cap.

    There are people who are not responsible enough to know if their gun is loaded with live ammo or not, and if you are one of those people, you should probably never touch your trigger unless you absolutely have to, and then you should just hope it goes bang.

    Look, a gun is a tool. It's the same as a screwdriver. If you take your screwdriver and try to hang a picture without any screws you won't get very far, and I would question whether you should own a screwdriver or not.

    Owning and practicing with a weapon is a very serious responsibility. For the people who are not responsible enough to clear their weapon prior to dry-firing, I have no respect and I hope they aren't at the range while I am, because they are simply unsafe.

    You can use spent brass on a rim-fire pistol, or like was mentioned before, most center-fire(yours included) are completely fine with dry-firing with nothing in the chamber.

    A snap-cap is like a trigger lock. We did alright for over 500 years without them, and the world won't come to an end if we don't buy them. It's a manufacturer stunt. Nothing more.

    That being said, snap caps can provide very useful training in failure drills if somebody else randomly loads your magazines so that you won't know when the 'failure' will occur.

    IMO, failure drills are the only place where snap-caps have a place, but it sure must be nice to create a market where little to no need exists.
    I do apologise for not mentioning my intent. ATM i do not have any big drills i am planning to run through(I have alot to read up on before anything like that). If i found out it is ok to use a casing as a temp snap cap i would load(Spent round with red paint) it without the mags which are locked up in my gun safe.
    Of the 3 things i wish to do with it.
    Get a feeling for the trigger, help the break in of the trigger a bit to smooth it out. and i do have one drill i wanted to practice to see if i can break a small flinch i have. With the gun just bairly away from the wall pulling the trigger. Hopefully that will help the occasional flyer i get with this and my .38s
    The Taurus SA/DA action should be great for it

    Thank you for the info tho

  9. #8
    VIP Member Array cvhoss's Avatar
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    I'm not a big fan of using a spent case for a snap cap for more than a few hits. After repeated firing on it, the primer indention will become so deep that it is no longer absorbing the impact of the firing pin. If you have a gun that shouldn't be dry fired, punch the primer out of a spent case (you can do this with a hammer and small nail if you don't reload) and fill the primer pocket with silicone. Let it cure for 24 hrs. and you'll have a homemade snap cap that will cushion the fall of the firing pin and last for quite a while.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cvhoss View Post
    I'm not a big fan of using a spent case for a snap cap for more than a few hits. After repeated firing on it, the primer indention will become so deep that it is no longer absorbing the impact of the firing pin. If you have a gun that shouldn't be dry fired, punch the primer out of a spent case (you can do this with a hammer and small nail if you don't reload) and fill the primer pocket with silicone. Let it cure for 24 hrs. and you'll have a homemade snap cap that will cushion the fall of the firing pin and last for quite a while.

    Hoss
    very good tip. i use a spent casing on my rimfires but if i use them more than once I am sure to rotate the casing so the striker hits a different spot.

    The guy above who mentioned irresponsible people and the dangers of using a spent casing is correct. make sure its really a spent round in the chamber, use common sense and check and recheck. better to be safe than sorry

  11. #10
    Ex Member Array Yoda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cvhoss View Post
    I'm not a big fan of using a spent case for a snap cap for more than a few hits. After repeated firing on it, the primer indention will become so deep that it is no longer absorbing the impact of the firing pin. If you have a gun that shouldn't be dry fired, punch the primer out of a spent case (you can do this with a hammer and small nail if you don't reload) and fill the primer pocket with silicone. Let it cure for 24 hrs. and you'll have a homemade snap cap that will cushion the fall of the firing pin and last for quite a while.

    Hoss
    +1 The reason you don't want to dry fire is to not damage the firing pin on older weapons, that is not a problem with your weapon. One reason to use a snap cap is to have a "dummy" round so you can identify some faults in your shooting.

    If you are loading an empty brass into a magazine it will not load the same, feed into the chamber the same, and may get deformed if you have a strong spring. So you may get practice clearing a jammed weapon.

    Improvements to Hoss' suggestion would be to also put a bullet back in the shell (fixed in place with some epoxy) and then color the shell red with a red colored permanent marker. You may want to stuff the empty casing with some wadding of some type. A homemade snap cap, probably a lot more work than what it would cost to buy one but some of us like to do stuff like that

    The answer to your question, yes it is okay but you may experience a jam or misfeed. There is a very low probability of it causing problems with the other "normal" rounds and causing any problems with your weapon.

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    Snap caps are CHEAP.....rather than go thru all the hassle of trying to make an inert round, just buy a few. The last ones I bought I paid $7.95 for 6.

    I have them in several different calibers & use them at almost all range sessions with my carry guns. They are great for malfunction drills.
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  13. #12
    VIP Member Array cvhoss's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BillyBeamon View Post
    Im in a position atm where i would like to dry fire my gun and will alot from this point.
    Will a empty case work? untill i can pick up a snapcap next week?
    Quote Originally Posted by goawayfarm View Post
    Snap caps are CHEAP.....rather than go thru all the hassle of trying to make an inert round, just buy a few. The last ones I bought I paid $7.95 for 6.

    I have them in several different calibers & use them at almost all range sessions with my carry guns. They are great for malfunction drills.
    Based on the OP's description, I was only trying to give him a temporary solution to a temporary problem.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cvhoss View Post
    I'm not a big fan of using a spent case for a snap cap for more than a few hits. After repeated firing on it, the primer indention will become so deep that it is no longer absorbing the impact of the firing pin. If you have a gun that shouldn't be dry fired, punch the primer out of a spent case (you can do this with a hammer and small nail if you don't reload) and fill the primer pocket with silicone. Let it cure for 24 hrs. and you'll have a homemade snap cap that will cushion the fall of the firing pin and last for quite a while.

    Hoss
    I've also heard of trimming a pencil eraser to fit the primer pocket and gluing it in place.
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  15. #14
    VIP Member Array Kerbouchard's Avatar
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    Since the OP is not looking for malfunction drills, and he only wants to practice trigger pull, there is no reason to use a spent casing, or a snap cap. On most modern centerfire weapons, there simply is nothing that a snap cap is going to do to 'absorb' impact than an empty chamber will provide.

    Clear your weapon, practice your trigger pull, load afterwards.

    The only viable reason for a snap cap is for dry firing rimfire weapons or practicing failure drills. And honestly, I think a spent casing is the magazine is probably better for a failure drill anyway. That way you could get a jam instead of just a click.
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  16. #15
    Senior Member Array Cthulhu's Avatar
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    Some guns won't feed the empty casing, which could put a hamper in some dryfire drills. There's also a good chance the spent casing could get deformed and fairly useless from repeated chambering...or attempts at chambering.

    Someone who reloads just made me a handful of dummy rounds...LRN bullets in used casings with no powder or primers. Since I almost never shoot lead, the rounds are easy to identify for me.

    -JT

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