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Marshal Jack Murphy SASS #32018

Help. Unable to clear sqib

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Yesterday I had a squib. Having a squib removal tool I was not to worried about removing the squib. Well the round was near the muzzle and when I started driving the squib out it moved until it stopped about half way down the barrel. Now it is stuck and won't move. I have placed the revolver in a vise, put some kroil in the barrel and am still unable to budge the squib. I believe that it is possible that the may be two squibes in the barrel because the last shot on the previous stag was light but I thought the bullet came out but maybe not have. Any suggestions on how to clear the barrel? 

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Place the squib rod in the vice. Then, place the barrel over the rod and use the weight of the revolver to drive out the bullet(s). Your pistol is heavier than your hammer.

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OLG: My reloading procedures are just fine. This ammo was not mine. I had left my ammo at home and borrowed this ammo. 

 

Assassin: Tried your suggestion and the squibs still don't move. The brass weight of the squib tool weighs more than my revolver. 

 

Now what????

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If you are shooting .38 Special, order a piece of 11/32” BRASS rod from McMaster Carr.  You’ll have to order a six-foot long “joint” or piece.   It will fit the .38 bore perfectly.  Cut off about 10 inches, dress it up so the end is still flat.  Use a 2-pound engineer’s hammer (a small sledge) to drive out the obstruction.  You’ll be delivering force across the whole width of the bore.
 

Of course, taking it to a gunsmith instead, to discus and maybe have him do it might be the best idea.
 

Cat Brules

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The impact shock of a heavy hammer onto that rod, will get things moving, BTDT.

Have a solid support at the back of the bbl while smack'n that rod.

OLG 

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PLUS ONE too Lump Lump.  Very important to have a solid support at the breach end of the barrel.  That badly stuck a heavy hammer could deform the frame.  Does sound like you have two in there.

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I NEVER borrow or shoot anything in my guns that I haven't loaded or is factory. A friend had a 2nd generation Colt in 45 Colt and was given a bunch of re loaded ammo. His 5th shot blew his gun up. Ruined a great gun, and he had just bought it. I decided then never to use anyones ammo but mine and factory.

Edited by Tascosa, SASS# 24838
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Marshal Jack Murphy knows proper loading procedures and is a very experienced shooter. He's seeking suggestions on how to remove bullets lodged in the barrel.

 

Marshal Jack send me a text and we'll figure it out, 307-287-6733.

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If you have access to a good accurate mill, you can remove the squib, as follows.  (If not, most gunsmith can do the job without damaging the gun. For them, difficult squib removal is routine). 

 

You did not mention the caliber of the pistol.  Obtain a steel rod that is a loose slide fit with the barrel diameter.   (use a lathe to make one, if necessary.) This is the alignment tool.  Chuck it, centered in the mill.   Slide the revolver onto the rod, and use that to secure the revolver frame such that the barrel is in exact alignment with the mill's Z axis.   With the gun secure, use an extended drill of about 1/2 the barrel diameter, and carefully drill into the lead plugs(s). Turn the mill chuck and drill by hand, to enable you to feel any steel to steel contact.   If the drill touches the barrel, stop immediately. 

 

With the hole drilled completely through the first lead bullet, now run an extended tap of appropriate size into the drilled hole.  With the hole tapped fully, then thread in a steel threaded mandrel into the lead plug.   Chuck the other end of the mandril into the mill chuck, lubricate, and rotate the chuck and mandrel by hand to screw into, and thus lift out the lead slug.  You will need to do them one at a time.   

If anywhere in the process, you detect steel-steel contact, stop, back off the mandril and attempt to pull the slug with less threads contacted.   If you put a heavy slide onto the mandril and place a double nut on the free end, you can use it as a back hammer.  Just work slowly and carefully. 

Remember, the slug has to rotate to move in the barrel.  Sometimes, with a hole drilled through the slug, the pressure is reduced enough that the slug can be conventionally driven out more easily. 

 

 I once removed four stacked, full-jacketed . 357 bullets from a 6" barrel, with the above method.

 

   Good luck.  Work carefully and accurately.   If you aren't fully confident, get help or pay a gunsmith do the job.  

Edited by Dusty Devil Dale
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Please keep us informed on your progress. 

I would like to know how you manage.

(Just in case.)

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This suggestion is only to brace the gun for squib removal. Remove the cylinder. Cut a piece of wood just slightly smaller the space where the cylinder was, preferably a hard wood but regular wood will work. Make the wood about a foot long. Slide the wood into the cylinder space. Either place the wood w/gun in a large vice with the gun as close to the vice as possible. You can also place the wood w/gun between two sturdy tables. The key is to have the gun firmly braced while using the hammer and ram. Good luck.

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You might try a Thompson Center black powder bullet puller that is used to remove stuck bullets.  Sometimes called a worm, it screws into the lead bullet so it can be removed.  No hammering necessary.

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1 hour ago, The Original Lumpy Gritz said:

The impact shock of a heavy hammer onto that rod, will get things moving, BTDT.

Have a solid support at the back of the bbl while smack'n that rod.

OLG 

Without the support that OLG describes, you risk springing the frame, which is near impossible to fix precisely, and it will change your cylinder clearance and bolt fit.  I would recommend against using the gun itself as the slide hammer, for that reason.  

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You can go to Menards and purchase a Brass Rod , you can take a empty casing with you to make sure you purchase the rite size.

If you lived closer we could remove the barrel then drive them out.

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7 minutes ago, Dusty Devil Dale said:

Without the support that OLG describes, you risk springing the frame, which is near impossible to fix precisely, and it will change your cylinder clearance and bolt fit.  I would recommend against using the gun itself as the slide hammer, for that reason.  

My remedy would be to find a piece of tubing that will fit the bore then use an extended drill bit through the center to drill them out.  The tubing will keep the bit from touching the barrel and you won't need a mill to center it.  Once there is a hole in the slug, you may be able to drive it through since the lead will deform into the hole.  The other method once it's drilled would be to thread it and pull it using a slide hammer or a piece of all thread.  A brass washer will protect the muzzle if you use the all thread.

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Murph, try placing your revolver in the freezer. Then, try to drive the bullets out. Lead contracts at a different rate than the barrel steel, it might be just enough to loosen the bullet up.

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18 minutes ago, Assassin said:

Murph, try placing your revolver in the freezer. Then, try to drive the bullets out. Lead contracts at a different rate than the barrel steel, it might be just enough to loosen the bullet up.

Could also shoot some canned air inside the barrel  (upside down) to cool the slug.

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Lots of good ideas above.  Only time I’ve had to do it it was on an auto with a short easily removable barrel so I had good visualization, but I just drilled out the center of the bullet starting from base end and then just rodded the bullet out.  If I recall I didn’t even need to drill all the way through.  

Lots of good engineering above, but if I couldn’t see it well I think I’d go with the muzzleloader corkscrew bullet puller idea above and just take time and remove material— and hope it wasn’t 2 or 3 stacked up.

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   I've seen several ruined barrels when customers try to drill or drive multiple squibs .

 Multiple squibs in a barrel present the hardest removals, most often because the barrel bulges and the obstruction swells into the bulge . I don't use the drill method. Unless you have a mill and experience don't try the drill method. Do no  drill it without a guide as the lead runs the bit into the barrel.

  If it's a hard one, and the barrel is undamaged, I pull the barrel, heat it only to a degree that wouldn't alter the metal treatment and press or drive it from the barrel in a barrel vise with the aforementioned brass rod. If the barrel is bulged get and fit a new barrel, be careful of your frame. Use an action wrench and barrel vise, do not use the piece of wood in the frame to turn it method I've seen mentioned in some publications. Revolver frames spring easy and some of the barrels are in tight.

Be patient , good luck.

Joe

 

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2 hours ago, Dusty Devil Dale said:

If you have access to a good accurate mill, you can remove the squib, as follows.  (If not, most gunsmith can do the job without damaging the gun. For them, difficult squib removal is routine). 

 

You did not mention the caliber of the pistol.  Obtain a steel rod that is a loose slide fit with the barrel diameter.   (use a lathe to make one, if necessary.) This is the alignment tool.  Chuck it, centered in the mill.   Slide the revolver onto the rod, and use that to secure the revolver frame such that the barrel is in exact alignment with the mill's Z axis.   With the gun secure, use an extended drill of about 1/2 the barrel diameter, and carefully drill into the lead plugs(s). Turn the mill chuck and drill by hand, to enable you to feel any steel to steel contact.   If the drill touches the barrel, stop immediately. 

 

With the hole drilled completely through the first lead bullet, now run an extended tap of appropriate size into the drilled hole.  With the hole tapped fully, then thread in a steel threaded mandrel into the lead plug.   Chuck the other end of the mandril into the mill chuck, lubricate, and rotate the chuck and mandrel by hand to screw into, and thus lift out the lead slug.  You will need to do them one at a time.   

If anywhere in the process, you detect steel-steel contact, stop, back off the mandril and attempt to pull the slug with less threads contacted.   If you put a heavy slide onto the mandril and place a double nut on the free end, you can use it as a back hammer.  Just work slowly and carefully. 

Remember, the slug has to rotate to move in the barrel.  Sometimes, with a hole drilled through the slug, the pressure is reduced enough that the slug can be conventionally driven out more easily. 

 

 I once removed four stacked, full-jacketed . 357 bullets from a 6" barrel, with the above method.

 

   Good luck.  Work carefully and accurately.   If you aren't fully confident, get help or pay a gunsmith do the job.  

 

 

That's basically how  I do it. But, you don't need a mill or lathe. You do need a long drill bit (electricians drill) about half the dia of the bullet. Wrap it in masking tape to just under the bore size leaving the first 1/2" exposed.  Wrap it so that it doesn't unroll as the drill turns. If it is a single bullet one hole through it will usually allow you brass rod to push it out. If more than one bullet you may have to drill some then pound it down, drill some more, . Drill and pound until you can push it out. BTW, make sure the cylinder is out.

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Usually a worm (ball puller) is used on a muzzle loader loaded with pure lead balls with minimum bearing surface.   Don't really think it would work with a harder material with that much bearing surface.    Good luck       GW

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Plus 1 to NKJ       GW

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Find something that dissolves lead & not steel ........

 

I drove 5 lead balls out of an ROA one time. Once I got them moving it wasn't too bad. My daughter held the revolver & I used the largest diameter brass rod that would fit.

Edited by Yusta B.

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Get a piece of tubing the ID of the barrel and a drill the ID of the tubing. Place the tubing in the barrel and drill it out. Lubricate well.

Edited by Mister Badly
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Largest diameter BRASS rod that will fit a 38 Special bore is 11/32 inch.

Youl’ll have to do the math on other calibers.

 

I wouldn’t use a steel rod down the bore.

 

Get someone to hold the revolver (or rifle with action open) when you drive out the squibs.  I would NOT put the weapon in a vise.

 

if it gets more complicated than that, I suggest you have a professionally (gunsmith) do it.

 

Cat Brules

Edited by Cat Brules
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15 minutes ago, Cat Brules said:

Largest diameter BRASS rod that will fit a 38 Special bore is 11/32 inch.

Youl’ll have to do the math on other calibers.

 

I wouldn’t use a steel rod down the bore.

 

Get someone to hold the revolver (or rifle with action open) when you drive out the squibs.  I would NOT put the weapon in a vise.

 

if it gets more complicated than that, I suggest you have a professionally (gunsmith) do it.

 

Cat Brules

 

 

how about a padded vise. Every gun that comes through here for work gets put in a leather padded vise.

You can't work on a 92 one handed :)

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Mercury will dissolve the lead. Available at a good pharmacy. However, youbthen have to dispose of the left overs from the barrel. It will jot hurt he gun, but thesludge that comes out will have to be disposed of properly. 

 

Other than that, try lead out. Let soak and try to drive the slug out as described.

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19 minutes ago, Nate Kiowa Jones #6765 said:

 

 

how about a padded vise. Every gun that comes through here for work gets put in a leather padded vise.

You can't work on a 92 one handed :)


Hi Nate,

it sounds like you do gunsmithing professionally.

 

My advice was aimed at the at-home guy doing it himself.

 

As you may note, my advice went further, to suggest that if the job became “more complicated” then they should consult a professional gunsmith.  A LOT OF PEOPLE shouldn’t be messing around with guns and vices, period.  I think you will agree.

 

Cat Brules

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1 hour ago, SHOOTIN FOX said:

Mercury will dissolve the lead. Available at a good pharmacy. However, youbthen have to dispose of the left overs from the barrel. It will jot hurt he gun, but thesludge that comes out will have to be disposed of properly. 

 

Other than that, try lead out. Let soak and try to drive the slug out as described.

 

What pharmacy carries mercury?

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Might be helpful to know how many squibs you have stuck in the barrel.  Measure with a dowel from each end and see how much space is taken up by the bullet(s).

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Hey folks!

It’s gonna be VERY smart of most of you to STAY AWAY from mercury!!!

 

the amalgamation of lead and mercury is dangerous.  You could get mercury and/or lead in your bloodstream jacking around with that stuff.  Especially using it as an adjunct, or step along the was to a desired end result.  Just stay away from it.

 

Also it (mercury) will damage your gold wedding band an other gold jewelry.

Gold dissolves/amalgamate with mercury.

 

Cat Brules

 

 

 

 

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As an aside, I've pushed stubbornly stuck lead balls out of my Hawken c&b rifle several times, using hydraulic pressure from a grease gun.  Unscrew the nipple and in its place screw in a 6mm grease zerk.  Pump in the grease until the ball comes out the muzzle.  Then remove the zerk, run in a brass rod to open up a channel through the grease, and spray heavily from the nipple end with compressed air, followed by spraying liberally with carburetor cleaner to get most of the grease out.  Firing several caps afterwards burns out the rest.  

Edited by Dusty Devil Dale
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