What is a Squib?
A "squib" load is defined as one which has insufficient power to propel a
bullet through the barrel of a gun. The squib or stuck bullet may get stuck
anywhere from the chamber to the muzzle end. Squib bullets are dangerous because they can bulge the barrel or cause it to
burst if not removed before another round is fired. Firing another round before
the squib is removed may cause the gun to explode and/or cause injury or death
to the shooter or people near by.
How Do I Know If I Have A Squib?
If, after you pulled the trigger of your gun you heard a little "pop" and or
saw a little smoke and you didn't feel the normal firing recoil and it just
didn't seem quite normal â€“ STOP IMMEDIATELY. IF IT GOES POP, YOU
STOP! Hold the gun pointed safely down range for thirty seconds then
cautiously (while keeping your finger off of the trigger of course) remove the
magazine and lock the slide back. If there is a stuck casing in the chamber of
the gun remove it. To check for a squib in the barrel try 1) Shine a bore light
through the breach while holding a piece of paper at the muzzle end of the
barrel. If you can't see any light shining on the paper then you have a squib;
2) Shove a rod through the muzzle end of the barrel to feel for an obstruction.
Causes Of Squibs
No Powder Charge (Primer Ignition Only)
Deterioration Of The Ammo From Age Or Prolonged Exposure To Weather Or
What Is The Best Way
To Remove A Squib Bullet From The Barrel?
Determine where the bullet is lodged. Insert a cleaning rod of the
appropriate size into the barrel (from the breech if possible), and then mark
the cleaning rod where it stops at the muzzle and/or breech end. Lay the
cleaning rod along the side of the barrel to see where the stuck bullet is
internally. If at all possible, work from the end of the barrel closer to the
What Type Of Rod To Use When Clearing A Squib
Wooden, brass or aluminum dowel rod, as close to bore diameter as possible.
Any rod of 1/8-inch diameter or smaller is going to have poor impact strength
and will flex sideways and hit the rifling.
Ref: Squib Rod - 9mm, .38, .357 Cal.
What Is The Best Direction To Push The Squib To Remove It? Does It Really
If the barrel is removed push it to the closest end of the barrel. If the
barrel is not removed you don't have much choice in the matter. Be Careful. If
you tap a rod through the barrel of a gun from the muzzle end, be sure it
doesn't poke through the gun (when the squib is suddenly released) and hit or
cause damage to the ejector or other parts of the gun.
How to find squib bullets
Ever since I had my first squib I have become extra careful when
shooting reloads. When shooting reloads, if I miss the target completely or
don't know where my bullet went or I am suspect of the last round that I shot
because of an odd noise or recoil, I immediately stop shooting. I then clear the
pistol, remove the magazine and lock back the slide so the gun is in a safe
condition. I run a brass rod down the bore to verify that I don't have a squib.
Indications of squibs in a pistol
You are most likely to have squibs when shooting reloads or reloaded
ammunition. Most squib bullets are the result of an insufficient amount of
smokeless powder in the cartridge. When fired the round doesn't have enough
explosive force to project the bullet through the barrel of the gun and the
bullet gets stuck somewhere within the bore. Indications that you might have a
- your pistol slide does not cycle properly or only partially comes back.
- you hear a small pop instead of the loud bang when you pull the trigger.
- you feel or see a back spray of powder when you fired your last round.
- you don't know where your bullet went when you fired your last round.
- the last round that you fired did not sound or feel right.
HELPFUL TIPS FOR REMOVING SQUIBS
The following are abstracts of what other people have tried for
removing squibs. It may provide some insight on what to do and what not to do
for removing squibs.
Revolver - tried the rapping on a cleaning rod thing and screwed up the
Using a wooden dowel is your best bet, it will push the bullet out
without scratching the rifling.
Wooden, brass or aluminum dowel rod, as close to bore diameter as
possible. It will come out easily with the proper dowel rod, one sharp smack
should do it.
Stay away from steel rods. Steel rods will damage the bore.
Sometimes a shot of gun oil or powder blaster makes it easier.
Typical "primer only" squib will push the bullet maybe 1/4".
Keep a brass rod and a small hammer in your range bag for removing squibs
Sometimes just dropping the rod down the barrel is enough--at most a few
taps with the hammer.
Do not ever use a wood rod or dowel to remove a squib. It will almost
always splinter and wedge itself and the obstruction even tighter into the
Remove the barrel and wrap it in a cloth so you can hold
it firmly. Insert a brass dowel into the closest end and tap it with a small
hammer until the bullet comes out.
A brass rod will dislodge the bullet quicker than wood
and will no gouge the barrel.
Buy a brass rod that just fits into your barrel. Tap the
rod forcefully by the palm of your hand first. If that doesn't work then use
Commercially available kits for removing squibs - Squib
Rod Kits are available for purchase on the internet and may cost as much as
$86. Don't waste your money. The kits are basically just an expensive set of
brass rods. If you have a lot of squibs you are making major mistakes in
your reloading process.
Removing a squib by firing a blank?
Using a wooden dowel to remove a squib. A wooden rod or
dowel can splinter against the nose of a bullet and wedge it making it
harder to remove.
Squibs are not limited to hand loads. Sometimes (although
rarely) you may get a squib from commercial ammo.
When you remove a squib make sure the gun is unloaded
first. Tap the rod with very light blows. Don't hit it with sledgehammer
Brass rod only! Steel can damage the barrel. Wood can
splinter and really jam a bullet.
Clamp the barrel in a vice between to pieces of soft
wood. Use small light taps.
A squib will not hurt the barrel. You could do more
damage removing the squib.
When you hear "pfffft", stop! The key is to not fire one
Do squibs sometimes go far enough that a new round can
Yes, they can and do go far enough down the barrel to
chamber and fire one behind it.
Heard the pop and the shot felt really strange so I
Unload the handgun. A rod too small in diameter will flex
and break, or wedge against the bullet, possibly scoring the rifling.
For .40 caliber or larger a 3/8inch diameter rod works
For .38/.357/9mm us a 1/4inch diameter rod.
For a better fit turn a rod on the lathe or buy a already
turned one from Brownells.
It is also helpful to use some penetrating oil on the
bore to decrease friction between the bore and jacketed bullets.
A squib round is one that has a weak powder charge. The bullet could
easily get stuck in the barrel. If this happens, the report will be quiet
and the recoil will feel funny. You should immediately unload the gun and
inspect the barrel and firing chamber(s) for a stuck bullet. You may want to
have a gunsmith examine the gun before you begin firing again.
This is a good video that will give you a good perspective about squibs.
My First Bullet Squib
Interesting day at the range. I had my first squib. The bad
thing is that I did not know I had a squib. No damage to gun. Did not get
hurt or anything. Did not fire the next round with the squib inside.
During my testing of 4.6 gr. of AutoComp with a COAL of
1.131" in the above table I encountered my first squib. The bad thing about
it was that I did not know that I had a squib.
I was firing my Glock 19 normally and when I pulled the trigger there was
just a "click" but no bang. I pulled the slide back and ejected the
casing but I encountered a jam as the next round tried to feed. The next
round would not load into the chamber. I locked the slide back, removed the
magazine and examined the round that would not feed. The round looked fine
but I set it on the firing table. I reinserted the magazine and racked the
slide to encounter another feed jam. I repeated this process a few more
times then I inserted the suspect rounds into my Glock 26 and they fired
fine. I then took some rounds from the magazine of the Glock 26 and loaded
them into the magazine of the Glock 19. Still more feed jams. This was
getting confusing. I did not see any obvious problems with the Glock 19 so I
rangemaster over and showed him my problem and asked if a weak magazine
spring could cause this to happen. He said it was possible and that a weak
spring sometimes tries to double feed the rounds into the chamber, then he
noticed a blockage in the chamber. He couldn't see what it was but he
couldn't see daylight through the barrel. He then took the gun to the office
where the other rangemaster proceeded to remove the obstruction. While
holding the gun with the slide locked back, he inserted what looked like a
cleaning rod into the muzzle end of the barrel. He then proceeded to tap on
the end of the rod with a hammer. One of two light taps was all that it took
to dislodge a bullet from the chamber.
The bullet must have gotten stuck right at the end or mouth of the chamber
with very little force behind it because it was still in pristine condition.
There were no marks or indentations on the surface of the bullet and only a
small pressure deformation at the back of the bullet where there was no
plating. It looked like a new bullet. This bullet had very little force
behind it. It is the amount of force that one would think would be from the
primer firing only, or very little powder.
I don't think this is the case because for every round that I reload, I
visually check the round twice before placing the bullet on the casing. I
give myself two verbal commands during the loading process. I say "half
full" then I look inside the casing to see if the powder fills approximately
half the case (the proper charge amount). Then I reach for the bullet and
look again saying "verify" to verify the powder level before placing the
bullet on the casing readying it for bullet seating. During the final
inspection I weigh each and every round as an addition safety step to ensure
correct powder charge.
This was one of those rounds that I reduced the COAL from 1.15 in. to 1.13
in., but I don't see how that could have caused the squib.
Thinking back I do remember one round that I fired. It did go bang but had a
little particulate blowback in my face and visual powder spray from the
side? of the gun. I remember feeling some specs of powder or something on my
cheek and I think I remember seeing some black stuff coming from the gun. By
looking at the target I could not tell if a bullet hit the target because
sometimes I miss and at times with so many holes in the target I cannot tell
which hole is the one I just shot. Since I often get some "blowback"
shooting my .22 caliber revolver I thought this was the case and continued
Change target more frequently to positively identify each
and every round placement. Stop and Check when anything is out of the
ordinary (especially when testing new powder loads).
Examination of My Squib Bullet
|9mm Squib Bullet On Right
||9mm Squib Bullet On Right
The only visual difference between the squib bullet
and the new bullet is that on the bottom of the squib you can see a small
deformation of the lead, possibly caused by the pressure of the primer or
weak powder charge detonation. Examination of twenty new bullets showed no
The pictures show the squib bullet on the right and a new
bullet on the left. The measured dimensions of the two bullets are as
New Bullet Dia. = .3550" - .3555"
- Squib Dia. = .3545" -.3560"
New Bullet Height = .5740" - .5765"
Squib Height = .5740
Examination of the Squib Bullet Case
Unfortunately, the squib bullet casing got lost and/or
mixed up with other cases laying on the range floor. Later, I did collect
all of the brass laying around and after a quick inspection found that none
of them had any split cases or gross deformities. I assume that one of those
cases was the case that held the squib bullet. If that is true then the
squib was not the result of a fractured or split case.
How The Bullet Squib Happened
My Reasoning and Conclusion of How the
The condition of the Glock 19 was fine.
The casing was fine.
The bullet showed evidence of very little deformation indicating
very weak pressures.
The bullet was "stuck" at the chamber mouth and easy to
I knew that the powder charge of AutoComp was "weak" from
previous testing (fired fine but failed to cycle the slide), that is why
I shortened the COAL from 1.15" to 1.13" (to try to increase the
pressure a little to cycle the slide properly). Could I have messed
something up during the process of shortening the COAL that lead to the
I don't think that I had a primer only ignition (no powder in case)
because of all the safety steps that I take during loading operations (I
could be wrong though I don't think so).
The bang that I heard, the spray back on my cheek and the quick
image flash of black stuff coming from my gun leads me to believe that
the primer ignited and perhaps I had a partial or incomplete burn on the
powder due to a light powder charge. The bullet was pushed to the end or
mouth of the chamber where it got stuck and the remaining un-burnt
powder was spewed out of the chamber through the breech of the gun
(because it could not travel down the barrel?).
Another Squib In A 9MM Pistol
A few weeks ago at the range a friend was shooting reloads that a
friend of his had made. The reloads were 9mm but instead of the regular 115
grain fmj bullets they were loaded with 147? grain fmj bullets. Well he got
a squib, but fortunately the bullet was stuck near the chamber and prevented
another round from being loaded. He removed it easily with an aluminum rod
and hammer. He then told me about another squib he had.
He was again shooting another persons reloads. I don't know all the
details but this time he was able to fire a second round with a squib in the
barrel. He told me that he didn't realize that he had a squib and when he
fired the second round (while the squib was in the barrel) the shot sounded
different and he knew something wasn't right. Fortunately for him his gun
did not blow up but the barrel bulged and locked up the gun and slide. He
later took it to a local gunsmith who replaced the barrel for him. The
repair cost him around $180 and a good lesson on how dangerous squibs can
be. Good thing he wasn't injured. He said he would bring in the bulged
barrel and show me. If he does I will take some pictures and post them here.
Squib Load Feedback Messages
Just Had Our First Squib
April 4, 2012
just had our first squib. 4 rounds behind the 1st squib. in a Ruger 357 mag
gp100. good 24 year old gun. Everything i just read is what happened to me and
my brother. this is good info to know.
40 Caliber Squibs From Oil Contamination?
April 4, 2012
Tanner, I hope I have a solution. I have loaded around 1000 rounds (200 at a
time) of .40 cal 165 GR jacketed flat nose (brand unknown - used pulls) once
fired brass (Federal) tumbled & cleaned primer pockets scraped out, primer holes
cleared, Winchester mag. primers, with 5.4 grains of Universal powder. (Med.
load) each round checked with a case gauge for brass length & final over all
length. I am shooting a Glock 23 & would take 200 to the range. 100 fired OK - 1
squib with the base of the bullet about 1/2" past the chamber. Black soot all
over the brass & rear of bullet & chamber. just went "PFFF" & black smoke out of
ejection port. Cleared squib & fired the other 100 rounds fine. This really
bothered me, I did it about 5 times & I thought crap! What the ???? is wrong. I
am loading with a Lee 1000 Pro Progressive press. I am hand loading primers
because I like the feel better. BUT about every 100 rounds I decided that I
needed to lube the action rod & ram with a little spray oil lube.Do you think I
might be contaminating the cases & powder that were still in the shell plate? I
will let you know tomorrow, as I have reloaded another 200 round to go to range
tomorrow, keeping all the brass, bullets, powder, & primers away while lubing.
Thanx for any input anyone may have!
Response - Chuckelz,
I don't reload .40 caliber, but the first thing that comes to mind is "Why are
you using magnum primers?"
Aren't you suppose to use standard small pistol primers for reloading .40 cal.?
I wonder if that could be the source of your problem.
Here are a few links that I found about .40 caliber and magnum primers.
When you say you did it about five times, do you mean that you had five squibs
that went "PFFF"?
I wouldn't think that you are contaminating the cases and powder unless you know
that you are. Any chance that you are getting the spray on the primers? Primers
and oil donâ€™t mix and can be a problem. Also lubricating every 100 rounds sounds
like a lot of lubrication. I lube mine press only a couple times per year (or
unless I think it needs it) and I apply the oil with a wetted q-tip so I can
control where the oil goes.
It also seems like you are doing a lot of extra work for nothing. If .40 cal is
anything like 9mm Luger (which I would think it is) you shouldn't need to clean
the primer pocket, primer hole or check the brass length. You also shouldn't
need to check every round for OAL. I just check the first two rounds at the
start of each reloading session and that's it.
How do you hand load your primers?
Also, are you aware about the warning with 40 S&W reloads and Glock pistols? I
was just looking at my Lee reloading manual and saw the following note on the
.40 S&W caliber page. I don't know anything about it though but you might want
to do an internet search for it.
"Do not use reloads in Glock or similar guns with chambers that do not fully
support the cartridge due to the intrusion of the feed ramp."
The note does not occur on the 9mm Luger page.
Let me know how it goes. If you still get squibs tomorrow, you might want to try
regular small pistol primers.
Reply - Tanner,
Thanx for the quick reply - I will answer all questions below.
"Aren't you suppose to use standard small pistol primers for reloading .40
I got these because that was all they had & the store I got them from said they
should work (I know, maybe newby mistake). I will check out your links for that
"When you say you did it about five times, do you mean that you had five squibs
that went "PFFF"?"
I took 200 rounds, 5 different times to the range & had 1 squib with each visit.
Yes all with a "PFFF"
"Any chance that you are getting the spray on the primers?"
Yes, it's possible, with a progressive press you have 1 primered case - 1
powdered case & 1 crimped W\ bullet
on the shell holder at all times!
Thanx for the tip on OAL. & shell prep!
"How do you hand load your primers?" - With a hammer & a punch! LOL JK
I use the new Lee Ergo hand primer - It seems to work great!
I am aware of the warning about using reloads in this gun. I have a lot of
friends that do this all the time for target rounds as long as they don't over
do the charge or pressure. I think I will switch to 9MM stuff for target & keep
my .40 cal stuff with factory ammo for personal protection. Glock are easy to
change that way.
Thanx so much for your feedback & will let you know my results after tomorrow!
Squibs From Insufficient Crimps
March 22, 2012
You can also get a squib from insufficient crimp when using slower burning
Squibs From Old Gun Powder
January 8, 2012
Is it safe to assume that old or weak powder would consistently produce "squibs"
as opposed to one out of say 500 rounds? Old powder is old powder? Thanks for
the help. Gary
Response - Gary,
I have never used old or weak powder so I could not tell you. I only use powder
that I am sure of. How old is old? I imagine it would depend also on how if was
stored too or if it was previously opened or not.
Personally, if I was suspect about the powder that I was going to use for
reloading I would discard it, but if you chose to use it I would test it first
and fire (very slowly) only at targets that I could see the bullet holes so I
know if there is a squib or not.
When you say one squib out of 500 rounds, I assume that is not an average for
the reloads that you are shooting. I have fired over 18,000 9mm reloads with
only one squib (no powder). My friend has shot roughly about the same amount of
his reloads and he too had only one squib (again no powder).
Something is wrong if you are getting one squib out of 500 rounds.
Tanner, 1 out of 500 with this powder Green Dot and it's most likely over 10
years old. Stored in my garage and I forgot I had it. 20+years reloading with
"no" squibs. But it only takes 1 to make you nervous. Don't think it was a
powder less case, but I can't be sure. The bullet barely cleared the case and
cylinder and it was a little tight to remove. What confuses me is why could you
shoot 500 rounds with this powder trouble free and then have a problem. I would
think "bad" powder would be bad throughout.
I Had My First Squib
January 27, 2012
I had my first squib after 20 years of reloading and it totally confuses me.
It appears to be a primer only. However I double check my powdered cases
prior to seating the bullet. (I have my doubts that there wasn't any powder
in the case.) The bullet was pushed so little into the barrel the cylinder
would not chamber the next round. The primer was pushed back a little also.
The powder is old, but 500 rounds were fired using the same powder without a
problem? Recoil was typical and slight sound difference.
Response - Gary,
Is this the same squib that you wrote in about before? Same website, different page.
When I had my squib (very similar to yours) I thought I remembered some
particulate blowback in my face and seeing or having an impression of a
little bit of â€œstuffâ€ coming out of the gun when I fired. Examination of the
bullet and location of the squib indicated that I had a primer only
ignition, presumably with no powder in the case, but I am only half
convinced. I wonder if there could have been an incomplete burn of the
powder or no burn at all (even if the primer did go off). It still bugs me
today on not knowing what the cause was.
Do you remember any blowback or residue when you shot? Was there any
evidence of un-burnt powder in the case?
You said that recoil was typical indicating that the powder was ignited,
unless it was just â€œanticipated recoilâ€ that you remember.
The primer being pushed back a bit is a little confusing. That seems to
indicate a lot of pressure.
On one hand you have evidence of lots of force (the pushed back primer, the
recoil, the bang), on the other hand evidence of little force (location of
This probably one of those mysteries that will go unsolved (unless it
happens again with your old powder). I would be curious to know the answer
If you ever solve it.
You might want to look at some of these. Maybe they will give you some
Slow burning powder can cause incomplete combustion -
Too much unburned powder... -
Unburned powder in case and barrel, inconsistent burn? -
Reloading & Squibs
August 9, 2011
I have a few questions I hope you can help me with. I have been reloading
for about a year and a half and while I am very careful I occasionally fire
a round the does not clear the barrel, presumably because there was no
powder in the charge. So far I have been lucky and have felt this and
immediately stopped shooting and cleared the barrel. My worry is what would
happen if I was shooting doubles and actually fired a second shot with a
bullet lodged in the chamber. My gut feel is it would likely explode
injuring or killing me. With that as a possibility I wonder if it is really
worth it to reload. Is there a way of determining if a round has powder in
it after it is loaded?
Response - Sean,
For me, getting a squib (bullet stuck in the barrel) then firing a second
round is my biggest concern with reloading. I did a bunch of research on it
and asked a lot of questions about it.
Everything that I know about squibs can be found on this page.
When I first started reloading I also asked the question â€œIs there a way of
determining if a round has powder in it after it is loaded?â€. I thought that
there must be a way to make the reloading process fool proof and to ensure
each reloaded round had a sufficient powder charge to it.
I experimented with weighing the bullets, casings and primers before hand to
get an average combined weight, then I weighed each completed round that I
reloaded. I was hoping that the weight difference would be equal to the
powder weight that I added. Unfortunately, each bullet, casing and primer
did not weigh the same and the variances were too great to even be an
indicator that the reloaded round had powder in it. To my knowledge there is
no way of knowing if a round has powder in it after it has been loaded. I
wish there was.
Hope the information helps.
Also, if itâ€™s not too much trouble, I would be curious to know the
What type of gun were you shooting.
How many squibs did you have.
What caliber were you reloading?
What reloading press did you use?
Thanks Tanner. I have had three of them. One in a 357 with a commercial
round. the second was a 9 mm round I had reloaded. I hear the primer go off
or rather felt it but it was not a fill shot so I disassembled the gun and
checked the barrel to discover the stuck bullet. The third was a 45 in my
son's gun. He found it because the next bullet would not chamber properly. I
use a 4 hole lee turret press with the lee precision powder measure but I
don't remember if these rounds were before or after I started using the
precision powder measure.
I also had a friend have a 380 commercial round get stuck.
nO pOWDER iN cASE Squib
Tanner, This is great documentation! I am glad that
you found the squib before an accident occurred although the squib appears
to have occurred in such a manner that it prevent the next round from
loading. Based on the description, I would say there was no powder in the
case and the primer just popped the bullet out. Was there evidence of burnt
powder in or on the case? I believe even a small amount of powder (~10% of
the required load) would drive the bullet out of breach area and further
down the barrel.
I Just Had My Own First Squib
Sent: Saturday, June 18, 2011
I came across your page looking for general information
on squibs as I just had my own first, though in my case there was no powder
in the case (I'm much more careful with my reloads now) Reading your
experience, I was left wondering if you didn't have enough crimp/tension and
the bullet separated from the case before all the powder burned and the
pressure was still low letting the rest vent out? Not sure if this is a
Response - Kevin,
That would provide an explanation for the little bit of blowback that I
think I remember, but I doubt that it was the cause of my squib.
When I reload 9 mm Luger rounds I don't crimp any of the casings I just
â€œflattenâ€ the casing mouth against the bullet.
You give me a good idea though. As a test, I think I will reload a couple of
9 mm Luger rounds without any crimp at all and shoot them at the range this
Thursday (slowly and carefully).
I will never know what the cause of my squib was. Examination of the bullet
indicates that I had a no powder in the case scenario (like you) but that
sort of contradicts what I think I remember happening (the blowback).
Since then, I have not experimented with any new powders or recipes and have
not had any more squibs or reload failures (other than a few primer
failures) in over 10,000 reloads.
I would be curious to know the details of your â€œno powderâ€ squib.
If you donâ€™t mind could you tell me.
- what type of gun and caliber
-where in the barrel the bullet got stuck
-how you recognized that you had a squib
-did your squib bullet did it have any pressure deformation at the bottom of
the bullet like mine did?
Squib In Barrel
Sent: Saturday, June 21, 2011
I've read on some boards that some people don't crimp, but only flatten out
the belling, as you do. Supposedly the case tension is enough. I have
observed significant case tension during my own reloading. The bullet is
actually bigger than the case due to the die that does the resizing. It
re-sizes it to a smaller diameter than spec. I called Dillons about it and
they said it was on purpose. I don't know if this is true of all dies, so
not crimping may or may not be a useful test. I crimp anyway because the
reloading manual calls for it - about 3 thousandths, though recently I've
backed it off to almost no crimp since I read that too much crimp might
cause "key-holing" (among other reasons), and some rounds in my last batch
were key-holing a bit.
My squib occurred in my Dan Wesson Valor 1911 chambered in .45 ACP. I was
using Berry's 230 grain plated bullets, Winchester primer, and Unique
powder. The bullet got stuck in the throat. When I fired there was a small
"pop" and the slide didn't cycle. I checked the chamber and the case was
just sitting in there so i let it fall out and tried to chamber a round and
it wouldn't. I remembered reading you should always check the barrel for
obstructions when a gun malfunctions so I did, and I could clearly see the
bullet in the throat. I removed the barrel and tried using two stacked 223
brass cases to try and poke it out figuring they wouldn't scratch it. It was
stuck in there pretty good though, and I didn't want to use too much force,
so I just handed it to the smith at the range. He tapped it out with oil and
a brass dowel. There was no deformation of the bullet. I noticed from the
pictures on yours, though, that the bottom does not look jacketed. I use
Berry's plated bullets. I've read its (Berry's specifically) not quite as
thick as jacketed, but almost. The plating does cover the bottom of the
bullet and might provide enough extra hardness to prevent an indent like
Good thing it was stuck in the throat. If it was further up and a round had
chambered, I might not have looked and it could have been a very costly
lesson. The thought gave me a good scare. Now I carefully check the powder
load in every bullet and pay even closer attention to each round I fire off.
Response - Kevin,
Thanks for getting back to me.
If you have to have a squib, having one that wonâ€™t let you chamber the next
round is the way to go. Itâ€™s a good â€œLesson Learnedâ€ that stays with you for
a long time.
It is surprising how much effort it takes to get the squib out of the
barrel. It makes me think of just how much force it takes to push a bullet
through the rifling and all the way out of the barrel to go down range to
the target each time you pull the trigger.
I wonder what would really have happened if you were able to chamber and
fire the next round. Would the new bullet push the squib out of the barrel
with no harm to the gun? Would the barrel expand and deform? Would the gun
â€œexplodeâ€ with no injury? Would the gun explode with injury? I wish there
was more information on this subject or a controlled study done of squibs in
handguns with pictures showing what happens to a variety of guns with squibs
at different locations within the barrel.
According to the range master at my shooting range, he seemed to think that
if I fired my Glock 19 with a squib in the barrel, it would probably not be
catastrophic or cause great injury. But I donâ€™t know. I think Iâ€™ll still
play it extra safe.
Squib In Barrel
Sent: Saturday, June 21, 2011
I hear you on the lesson learned. I've also thought on how much force it
takes to push a bullet through the rifling. I was reading once on
counter-boring (I had just bought a Mosin Nagant and wanted to know if it
had been counter-bored) and one post said to take the bullet and insert the
tip and the crown of the barrel. If it fit in, it was likely counter-bored,
if it didn't, then probably not. When I tried it I was shocked at how much
bigger the bullet was than the crown. I never knew when you fired a round it
was basically being severely squished down and then run down the rifling.
Plugging one end up that up reminds me of a pipe bomb.
Lots of places I read about this on, and the smiths I've talked to say that
firing a round when you have a squib will at best "bulge" the barrel,
ruining it (somebody suggested it in a forum as a way to clear it and got
jumped all over). If your less lucky the barrel can supposedly split, and
even worse, given sufficient pressure, act like a bomb and blow the gun
apart. Whether or not anyone is hurt probably depends on which way the
pieces fly. I'm sure a lot has to do with the guns design too. For example,
one of my guns, a Glock 22 is designed to take any kind of overpressure from
a blockage or double load and blow it out the bottom of the magwell (I just
learned that recently and though it was pretty cool). It'll still mess up
the gun, but its far less likely to result in harm to the user. I think your
right - best to play it safe in all things when it comes to guns. There
really isn't much, if any room for error.
Response - Kevin,
Thatâ€™s pretty interesting and good information. The more that I hear about
squibs â€œnot blowing your hand offâ€ the better I like it.
About a year ago I was talking about squibs with a friend and we were
wondering why gun manufacturers didnâ€™t build in a â€œrelief deviceâ€ in over
pressure situations which would blow out the magazine and discharge the
pressure through the magazine well (as you indicated). It sounded like a
Also, a while ago I took some pictures of a bullet not fitting into the
muzzle of my Glock 19.
I was also surprised at how much larger the bullet was compared to the
9MM Squib & Heavy Recoil
Sent: Wednesday, June 15, 2011
My S&W police issue hand gun either very heavenly recoiled or blue back
3weeks ago and my upper chest has been feeling like it was punched. Can you
please explain to me what might of happend I have fired bigger guns than
this 9mm without troublthanj you Don. ps.I will get the gun checked out by
my local gun shop before I fire it again.
Smart move. Having your gun checked out at the gun shop is the best thing
you can do.
1. What type of ammo were you using? Reloads? Factory? +P Loads?
2. Did this happen on your first shot or after several shots.
3. Were you holding the gun close-in to your chest or at arms length? If you
held it close to your chest perhaps the slide hit your chest or you
weren't holding the gun firm enough. (This happened to me once and my right
chest was sore for several minutes. I was shooting one handed, holding the
gun close into my chest area. I held it firmer and a little farther out
4. Did you shoot or examine the gun afterwards? I assume there were no
My guess is #3, from the info that you provided.
Second Shot Pushes Out Squib From Barrel?
Sent: Thursday, June 16, 2011 1:34 AM
Tanner, thank you for your thoughtful response my ammunition was new PMC
luger suitable for my 5906 parabellem.
I held the gun straight out in front with. Firm two handed grip because this
gun is so heavy I have fired it with ought any Problem in the past the
pressure I felt in my chest came from either air blast or massive recoil
itwaz the second shot that I had the problem the first shot dident even hit
the target which never ever happens for me at close dance ( 10 ft) the. When
I whent to fire again the gun kept on ejecting un spent amo out of the place
the spent brass usually flys out of I think I played with the slide or
cocked the hammer at this point and then on the second shot I hit the target
and got this ripping feeling in my chest. I will get training in the proper
use of this gun....... Now that I have
felt the power of a 9mm I have a healthy respect. I'm scared of it!!!
Thank you for your help it is very much appreciated. I
bought this gun used at Local gun store 9 years ago after some burglar arise
in the area and only recently fired it.
Response - Don,
I can see why you were researching squibs and why you are now a little
afraid of your gun. I would be too. After your explanation, I wouldn't be
surprised if you had a squib. Firing a shot at close range and not having it
hit the target is a pretty good indication of one (depending on how good a
shot you are).
I guess that after the second shot you were too shook up to notice if you
made two bullet holes in the target instead of one when you fired (the
second one pushing the first one out of the barrel).
If you get a change and if you remember, I would be curious to know what the
gun smith's examination reveals about your gun.
9MM Gun Squib
Sent: Thursday, June 16, 2011 1:34 AM
Thank you. Will let you know Don
It Was A Squib
Sent: Thursday, June 16, 2011 1:34 AM
Hi Tanner. Well it turns out it was indeed a squib
Squib Research and Research Links
Seating the bullet deeper in the case decreases the
volume inside the case. The decrease in volume helps get the small charge
burning, as the pressure and therefore temperature builds more quickly. The
bullets getting stuck in the barrel probably happen due to incomplete powder
Would it ever be advisable to use less powder than the recommended starting
load in order to further avoid possible over pressuring? Or could that also
be dangerous as the under-pressure condition could result in incomplete
powder burn, etc.?
I would NOT. Starting loads in semi autos often won't give reliable feeding.
Going lower only makes this worse. I NEVER shoot low recoiling "mousefart"
loads. It is diff. for a newb shooter to realize he has had a squib load if
there is no recoil. Use starting data & workup in small batches in 0.1gr
increments until you get accuracy & reliable feeding w/ complete powder burn
(too low in pressure loads of med. powder will often leave unburned powder
behind)You want low recoil, shoot a 22lr. http://www.glocktalk.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1129878
You might want to try increasing your load slowly looking for signs of
pressure, etc. When I hear the powder is not burning completely it makes me
think the charge is to light. http://forum.m1911.org/archive/index.php/t-4997.html
The above information was developed with regards to squibs in pistols and
may or may not be pertinent to squibs in long guns or revolvers.
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