Marlin Firearms Forum banner
1 - 20 of 30 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
In working on loads for the 1894C I first used some Speer 158g JSP bullets that turned out to match exactly the velocity of Federal's American Eagle JSPs using AA#9 and CCI 550 magnum primers. (I was using magnum primers for some other powders and just used 'em for the #9 as well.) Decided to see if my usual WSP primers would do as well (I have lots more of those than the CCIs) but couldn't find any of the Speer JSPs in stock anywhere.

So I ordered some Speer 158g Total Metal Jacket Flat Point bullets, which were available and which are the same shape as the JSPs, just with a jacketed flat tip instead of visible lead. (These bullets also have the same shape as the coated lead bullets I'm experimenting with, which are uniformly described by multiple vendors as RNFP.) When I opened the box, though, there's a slip of paper saying they "SHOULD NOT be used" in tubular magazines as "there is a VERY HIGH RISK OF PERSONAL INJURY" and "extensive damage to the firearm will result" (caps used on the warning). Product is Speer's TMJFN, item 4207. This warning does not appear on any of the vendor pages that I checked for this product - Midway, Midsouth, Natchez and Powder Valley (I actually got mine from Midway.)

Now I'm well acquainted with the no-pointy-bullets-in-tubular-magazines rule, why this has historically limited the long range abilities of tube-magazine lever action rifles, and I know and appreciate why Hornady developed the Leverevolution bullets, of which I have a box. But the meplat on the front of this bullet is larger than the entire primer pocket on my 357 cases, and while it may not be as flat as a surface plate, I'd bet it's within 0.001 of flat across its face. So I have no idea how one of these bullets could impinge on a primer ahead of it in a tube in any way that would flatten it against its anvil and set it off.

Still, presumably somebody managed to create a magazine explosion with one of these bullets and so Speer puts this little warning note in the box. As a retired lawyer I can understand why their lawyers make 'em do this. But somehow I'm thinking this is coming close to the universal warning that California has determined bullets are dangerous, and I'm leaning to just ignoring it as random noise.

But I thought I'd ask if anybody else has seen this warning, or knows any details about what might have caused it to be included with these bullets? I like that I can match some factory ammunition with these bullets (at least the SP version - when it's available it's actually cheaper than these TMJs), and I can't do that with the coated lead bullets (which are even cheaper, but they have a lower maximum charge of #9 in the Accurate Data Book, and are even slower with a max charge of H110/W296.) So - any experience or other thoughts?
 

·
Premium Member
All kinds. Enamored of their mechanisms! Worked as an engineering
Joined
·
12,656 Posts
Midway is CYA. Lead is softer than brass/copper. Theoretically lead/thin plated bullet would bend against the rear of a cartridge whereas a full metal jacket might be hard enough to imprint a primer.

My gut says it's a one in 10,000 chance or more of actually happening. I would contact the bullet manufacturer for there stance.

let us know what you learn.

AC
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
142 Posts
But the meplat on the front of this bullet is larger than the entire primer pocket on my 357 cases, and while it may not be as flat as a surface plate, I'd bet it's within 0.001 of flat across its face. So I have no idea how one of these bullets could impinge on a primer ahead of it in a tube in any way that would flatten it against its anvil and set it off.

So - any experience or other thoughts?
No experience with that projectile, but if the meplat is larger than the primer pocket I fail to see how it could set off a primer, with this caveat: If you are using cases that use small pistol/rifle primers it will be nigh on impossible but, if it's large pistol/rifle primers, ensure by measurement that the meplat is indeed larger than the primer pocket.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Sorry I wasn't as specific as I should have been: the tubular magazine warning is from Speer, it was inside the sealed box of bullets. I just happened to buy the box from Midway.

As for the meplat/primer sizes, the 357 case does use small pistol primers, not large, with a primer pocket diameter of ~0.170". The meplat on the bullet is somewhat larger by a few thousandths, although that's an eyeball sort of measurement because the transition from the meplat flat to the curved side of the bullet has a bit of a radius and is not a hard edge.

To set off a primer there needs to be a very localized impact centered over the anvil inside the primer, with enough force to bend the rear face of the primer in to the point where it crushes the primer compound over the anvil. A hard tipped pointed bullet apparently can do this, while the rounded lead tips on typical 30-30 and 35 Remington cannot. The Hornady Leverevolution bullet tips are soft enough that they won't crush the rear of the primer despite being pointy. But as I mentioned in the original post, I cannot for the life of me visualize how any part of this Speer flat point bullet could impinge on the center of a primer ahead of it in a way that would crush the primer compound against the anvil.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
14,099 Posts
In working on loads for the 1894C I first used some Speer 158g JSP bullets that turned out to match exactly the velocity of Federal's American Eagle JSPs using AA#9 and CCI 550 magnum primers. (I was using magnum primers for some other powders and just used 'em for the #9 as well.) Decided to see if my usual WSP primers would do as well (I have lots more of those than the CCIs) but couldn't find any of the Speer JSPs in stock anywhere.

So I ordered some Speer 158g Total Metal Jacket Flat Point bullets, which were available and which are the same shape as the JSPs, just with a jacketed flat tip instead of visible lead. (These bullets also have the same shape as the coated lead bullets I'm experimenting with, which are uniformly described by multiple vendors as RNFP.) When I opened the box, though, there's a slip of paper saying they "SHOULD NOT be used" in tubular magazines as "there is a VERY HIGH RISK OF PERSONAL INJURY" and "extensive damage to the firearm will result" (caps used on the warning). Product is Speer's TMJFN, item 4207. This warning does not appear on any of the vendor pages that I checked for this product - Midway, Midsouth, Natchez and Powder Valley (I actually got mine from Midway.)

Now I'm well acquainted with the no-pointy-bullets-in-tubular-magazines rule, why this has historically limited the long range abilities of tube-magazine lever action rifles, and I know and appreciate why Hornady developed the Leverevolution bullets, of which I have a box. But the meplat on the front of this bullet is larger than the entire primer pocket on my 357 cases, and while it may not be as flat as a surface plate, I'd bet it's within 0.001 of flat across its face. So I have no idea how one of these bullets could impinge on a primer ahead of it in a tube in any way that would flatten it against its anvil and set it off.

Still, presumably somebody managed to create a magazine explosion with one of these bullets and so Speer puts this little warning note in the box. As a retired lawyer I can understand why their lawyers make 'em do this. But somehow I'm thinking this is coming close to the universal warning that California has determined bullets are dangerous, and I'm leaning to just ignoring it as random noise.

But I thought I'd ask if anybody else has seen this warning, or knows any details about what might have caused it to be included with these bullets? I like that I can match some factory ammunition with these bullets (at least the SP version - when it's available it's actually cheaper than these TMJs), and I can't do that with the coated lead bullets (which are even cheaper, but they have a lower maximum charge of #9 in the Accurate Data Book, and are even slower with a max charge of H110/W296.) So - any experience or other thoughts?
Just like Speer I am not saying to use them. I am sure that liability is the reason they have that just in case some idiot figures out how to blow up a rifle with them. I would think that it would take a hell of a charge and like said before maybe a large primer to get a bunch to go off. I am betting it would not be easy to do if someone was trying to do it. All that said don't go by me you already know as much and probably more than I do about shooting and bullets.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,182 Posts
I remember this subject coming up a few years ago with the same bullet and warning. Nobody ever came up with a solid reason for the warning but it is still there. Might be and this is just a guess that since the cartridges are of the rimmed type they do not sit in the tube straight but cocked just a fraction up, down, left, or to the right. If the next cartridge is cocked in the opposite direction the edge of the meplat may just contact the edge of the primer. Only thing I can think of and even that seems far fetched...but who knows.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
That's certainly a possibility. I haven't disassembled mine to measure the tube ID and then try to calculate cartridge displacements, etc. What I can't get out of my mind is that I've understood that lighting off a primer takes a pretty substantial smack on a pretty tiny spot on the primer to make it work. The larger the area struck the more energy is required to bend all the extra primer cup material so that the part directly over the anvil gets crushed down far enough. But even the "edge" of the meplat on this bullet looks like it would have to crush the whole width of the primer cup in order to make any real impact on the center at all, and I have a hard time imagining there's that much energy in the recoil of a 357 round in this rifle. Still, we have to assume somebody managed to do it, so . . .

Out of curiosity I looked at Midway's 158g 357 Mag ammo offerings, and note that both Fiocchi and Magtech have full metal jacket flat point bullets. Some reviewers under each of these loads talk about using them in lever action carbines (Henry and Rossi), although one Fiocchi reviewer suggests not using it in tube magazines because of the small flat tip (which looks to be smaller than the Speer bullets I'm talking about.) But no indication that it's a warning from the manufacturer.

I think I'm going to load my test loads but feed 'em single shot when I do velocity and accuracy tests. (One thing I'm checking is whether standard WSP primers lower the velocity below what I got with CCI 550 magnum primers.) When I'm done, any leftover bullets will just get put in 38 Special cases and shot up as blasting ammo.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
Lay a bullet on your bench / desk at rest, and look at the angle. 2-3 degrees?

I don’t see that being a great enough angle to bring the edge of the meplat into play in order to depress enough of the primer when you have the rest of the flat surface of the face of the bullet spread across the face of the rim of the cartridge it is resting against.

My guess, you would need a 45 degree angle of the cartridge to even come close to executing a primer discharge with the edge of the meplat, and that is “if” you can get the “whole” edge applied deep enough into the primer metal to strike the anvil when the rest of the edge is against the brass of the cartridge ahead of it.

LEGAL DISCLAIMER: The above is just an observation, and should not be construed as any type of advice to load a TUBULAR magazine with bullets having a warning against doing such.
 
  • Like
Reactions: gunscrewguy

·
Registered
Joined
·
84 Posts
I use the Speer 158gr. SP bullets along with the Speer 158gr. TMJ bullets in my Marlin 1894C 357mag and haven't had an issue with either bullets. My partner has a Henry Steel Boy in 357mag and shot both bullets. Far as I know he hasn't had an issue either. Load them up and shoot them. I load mine with 16.0gr. of H110 powder and a Federal Gold Match Magnum Small Pistol Primer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,303 Posts
I would either call Speer or send them a message to confirm and to ask "why" the warning.

https://www.speer-ammo.com/customer-support

Perhaps there's a perfectly logical reason for not using them in a tubular magazine.

It's just like using heavy jacketed bullets in standard pressure .38 Special loads. It was OK to do so for the longest time. Somewhere around Speer Reloading Manual No. 12 bullet bore friction increased (for some reason) and it became a no-no unless it was the 125 gr. weight jacket bullets. Even with this bullet weight, the loads listed state DNR.

AFAIK, other reloading manuals have followed suit with the same warnings.

:dontknow:

My guess is there are uncontrollable variables that probably add some increased risk of magazine detonations? IOW, CYA....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Your analysis matches mine, ElkSlayer. There may be an additional degree or two of relative tilt between adjacent rounds given whatever small clearance there is inside the magazine tube, but I just can't see how the "edge" of a bullet meplat can move far enough off center from the round ahead of it to come anywhere near the center of a primer. Especially if the primers are seated slightly below flush, which mine are using the RCBS hand priming tool. (That's advice from me to myself, not from you, BTW.)

And 375 Ruger, thanks for your experience. I'm starting to come around to that way of thinking, too - just load 'em up and shoot 'em. I do think I'll try to find the JSPs in the future, though, just so I can forget about this issue entirely - they're also cheaper than the TMJs, too, at least the out of stock JSPs are.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,685 Posts
I would guess that at some time in the past a reloader did not fully seat the primers into his cases. He then loaded the rounds with the high primers into his tubular magazine. Upon firing a round the stack of rounds in the magazine tried to finish seating the primer in the primer pocket, crushing the anvil and creating a detonation in his magazine. This resulting in a law suit trying to have some one else pay for his stupidity.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I would guess that at some time in the past a reloader did not fully seat the primers into his cases. He then loaded the rounds with the high primers into his tubular magazine. Upon firing a round the stack of rounds in the magazine tried to finish seating the primer in the primer pocket, crushing the anvil and creating a detonation in his magazine. This resulting in a law suit trying to have some one else pay for his stupidity.
I had thought about a proud primer as a source of detonation, but then remembered that the anvil piece of a primer is held INSIDE the walls of the primer cup, so until the primer is fully seated against the bottom of the primer pocket, a following bullet nose would just push the anvil forward along with the rest of the proud primer. Only when the primer is fully seated can a blow on the rear press the metal of the primer cup in against the now-solid anvil.

But as I mentioned earlier, it takes a very focused impact on a small area to dent the primer cup material enough to set things off. A flat bullet nose against the full surface of a primer couldn't do it (otherwise we'd hear about a lot more primer explosions in reloading presses, which I understand DO happen, but pretty much only when a primer gets sideways and everything gets crunched up inside by the seating ram, allowing high localized pressures on the primer compound.)

Still, SOMEbody must have been able to do SOMEthing that caused a cartridge explosion in a magazine tube with these specific bullets loaded in the cartridges. It's just a mystery to me how it could have happened. I DID send a query to Speer through the Contact Us page on their web site. If I hear anything back I'll let you all know.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,132 Posts
Just make sure the primers are seated to the bottom of the case's primer pocket.
If the bullet nose is wider than the primer is-No worries.
Agree-Lawyer CYA.......The same reason that Marlin put that damm cross-bolt safety in.
LG
 

·
Premium Member
All kinds. Enamored of their mechanisms! Worked as an engineering
Joined
·
12,656 Posts
I've observed hours of high speed photography of various small arms as part of my job. The dynamics of recoil, user holding, shoulder, prone, standing, hip, prone, solid rest, all produce different effects.

Laying out cartridges in a static line is just that - no movement. As the projectile starts its journey there all kinds of things happening. I've seen spent cartridge casings spin back toward the ejection port and occasionally jam the gun entering the open port. When a gun is fired under high speed video situations all hell breaks loose becomes visible. There's no telling what is recoiling and bouncing around in the magazine tube during the recoil event. Only HS video with a clear mag tube would begin to reveal what is going on during the firing cycle.

We've all heard the AK47 series rifles are so reliable due to the loose tolerances. Look and see if there is any HS video of an AK in full auto. It flexes so much it looks like a Hoochee Coochie dancer. Those generous tolerances are what allow the AK to even to function - and continue to function under fowled dusty, mud, adverse conditions. It is also the reason they are not inherently accurate.

I've heard it said regarding WW I and WW II -

"The Americans take a target gun into battle",
"The Germans go to battle with a hunting rifle", and
"The British go to war with a Battle Rifle."
"The Russians carried a tool."

Just found some video of the AK. Lots of flex!


AC
 
1 - 20 of 30 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top