What went wrong here...

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OP said rounds were dirty.
I've noticed this with low pressure loads.
Low pressure loads often don't push the case against the chamber wall hard enough to make a good gas seal.
Therefore gases will migrate between the case and the chamber and soot up the outside of the case.

I wonder if part of this dirt is brass dust? U reloaders would know about that probably but to me it seems like it may be one and the same thing. Poor manufacturing/dirty rounds with part of the dirt/debris being brass dust. If there any common source of brass dust when reloading that might explain it?
The only "brass dust" that I've noticed is from normal cycling of brass cases.
Almost everywhere in the pistol, the brass is in contact with hardened steel, so it's normal for a few tiny brass chips to come off during each cycle.
 

awshoot

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I think it is brass dirt. Since it's brass jacketed bullets. It could just be some of the brass coming off the back of the bullet.
I doubt that -- you have a brass to brass situation there where the bullet brass is backed by soft lead. I would expect deformation of the bullet rather than shaving the brass. I would bet a substantial sum it is shavings off overflared case mouths being run through a taper crimp -- I've personally done it with hardcast lead bullets, and you get tiny little specks of brass. If it came from the bullet when I did it, I would have gotten lead droppings, not brass.

Anyway, if they don't clean their ammo off afterwards, it would be on everything.

 

awshoot

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Here's an example of what I mean. In this video I take a clean sized case, and flare the heck out of it. I remove the flaring die and insert the bullet seating/taper crimping die (I cut that part out -- Imgur won't let you post more than 60s videos) but you can hear a little of the unscrewing. Afterwards I rub the rim on my black nitrile glove and you can see that it scuffs the rubber, but leaves no brass residue. Without a bullet, I run it through the crimping part of the die (you can hear the low tone scrape as the flared mouth engages the taper) then rub the rim on my gloves again. This time you can see it immediately deposits a gold residue -- this is a fine brass dust. There are some other flecks of brass near my pinky -- I practiced before this shot and failed to change gloves. Nevertheless, this piece of brass was rubbed on clean nitrile and the result is pretty apparent. If a person doesn't wipe down the finished cartridges afterward, this brass dust will deposit itself throughout one's gun and when spread out on a black surface, especially if outside in the sun, it'll look someone blew sparkle dust through the gun. I know this because I've done this. :confused:

The more a case is flared, the easier it is to seat the bullet to be nice and centered -- makes prettier ammo. The downside is case wear, potential neck splits, and brass dust. None of those downsides would be important to the manufacturer, and all the upsides would be because it would make pretty ammo.

 
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Interesting consensus opinion on the main failure, but what are plausible explanations for the golden flecks and golden dust in the original post?
gold flakes = some from the brass case and some from the copper-jacketed bullet. Seating the bullet with a minimum belling of the brass can shave off little bits of copper as well.

I think it is brass dirt. Since it's brass jacketed bullets. It could just be some of the brass coming off the back of the bullet.
Doubt brass bullet, normally it's all copper jacket or a copper plating. CCI Blazer Brass for example is all copper-plated lead bullets. Copper jackets are a piece of copper with a swaged lead core formed into it. Jacketed is of higher quality but more costly.

BUT with that said coper jackets also can yield gold flakes in the loading process. Especially high-speed loading like a commercial loader would be running with a Camdex or Ammoload system.

I throw into the "It's the ammo camp" on this one. Remember it's not just a potential of a 2x of a powder load. It can also be the bullet could have not to be crimped properly OR was undersized and slipped back into the case as it when into the battery. This would exponentially increase the pressures when the load was fired = kaboom.

Bottom line sorry you're having to deal with this experience. :(.
 
OP
grimmy999
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I heard back from S&W. They just sent me warranty instructions and a shipping label. I did get a hold of the owner for the company that makes the ammo. He seemed way more willing to help. I've sent the gun to him. It's clear that the round went off without being fully in the chamber. The gun is now on it's way to S&W. Nobody expects any news from them, but maybe they'll be able to uncover some reason as to why the round went off without being fully seated. Seems unlikely at this point.
 

Camelfilter

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I heard back from S&W. They just sent me warranty instructions and a shipping label. I did get a hold of the owner for the company that makes the ammo. He seemed way more willing to help. I've sent the gun to him. It's clear that the round went off without being fully in the chamber. The gun is now on it's way to S&W. Nobody expects any news from them, but maybe they'll be able to uncover some reason as to why the round went off without being fully seated. Seems unlikely at this point.
You sent the gun to the ammo company, and they are sending it to S&W?
 

ilikegunspdx

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I heard back from S&W. They just sent me warranty instructions and a shipping label. I did get a hold of the owner for the company that makes the ammo. He seemed way more willing to help. I've sent the gun to him. It's clear that the round went off without being fully in the chamber. The gun is now on it's way to S&W. Nobody expects any news from them, but maybe they'll be able to uncover some reason as to why the round went off without being fully seated. Seems unlikely at this point.
CF97EEC6-5C78-4220-88C4-B7F6606C23F8.jpeg 1D29E750-84BD-4D77-BE9F-DF471B364569.jpeg
 
I heard back from S&W. They just sent me warranty instructions and a shipping label. I did get a hold of the owner for the company that makes the ammo. He seemed way more willing to help. I've sent the gun to him. It's clear that the round went off without being fully in the chamber. The gun is now on it's way to S&W. Nobody expects any news from them, but maybe they'll be able to uncover some reason as to why the round went off without being fully seated. Seems unlikely at this point.
I think that S&W will repair/replace your pistol in the end. Think positive. They are a quality company.
 
It's clear that the round went off without being fully in the chamber.
If the first picture in the OP is how the gun was picked up from the ground, I call BS on it firing out of battery. The slide is closed and the the picture of the underside of the slide shows the case seated, but blown out the bottom where it's unsupported.
Since the gun had a "trigger job". S&W has a leg to stand on regarding shifting liability to someone else, but they may prove instrumental in diagnosing whether it actually did fire out of battery or not.
If the firing pin stuck in the extended position it could cause a slam fire, basically operating like an open bolt machine gun. Complaints by the op of "brass dust" could be the culprit for an instance like that, as could a faulty sear.

It will be very interesting to see how this all shakes out.
 
OP
grimmy999
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If the first picture in the OP is how the gun was picked up from the ground, I call BS on it firing out of battery. The slide is closed and the the picture of the underside of the slide shows the case seated, but blown out the bottom where it's unsupported.
Since the gun had a "trigger job". S&W has a leg to stand on regarding shifting liability to someone else, but they may prove instrumental in diagnosing whether it actually did fire out of battery or not.
If the firing pin stuck in the extended position it could cause a slam fire, basically operating like an open bolt machine gun. Complaints by the op of "brass dust" could be the culprit for an instance like that, as could a faulty sear.

It will be very interesting to see how this all shakes out.
When I picked the gun up the slide was not just closed, but was difficult to open. However, I didn't look close enough to check if the side was completely closed.

This is what I'm most curios about. As time goes on details of the events are getting more blurry. I want to say that I pulled the trigger to make that go off, but now I can't rember if I pulled the trigger on round 59 and 60 just went off? I would think I would remember something like that.

One thing is for sure. Eye witness accounts suck as I can't be sure of the sequence of events anymore.

I'm glad this happened on the range and not in a defensive encounter. Emotional fitness is a tough thing to train, and while I was on the range and not expecting this level of injury, I was very "DONE" after that happened. It took a while for me to calm down and be functional again. I'm glad my injuries were minimal.
 
I'm glad my injuries were minimal.
That is the most important part of this story!:s0073:

Right now everyone is an "armchair quarterback". Opinions are like butth.... Bellybuttons, every one has one!
I stated what I believe based on the pictures. But that is only my opinion.

Traumatic occurrences don't always leave a clear mind. I was involved in a motorcycle accident last summer that was nearly debilitating. It took me days to piece the "facts" together and I'm still not exactly sure how it all happened. I know how it started, but it quickly went downhill from there and only examining what little evidence I had helped fill in some of the blanks. Some of them...

I'd still bet dollars to doughnuts it's the ammo. :D
 

citizen a

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When I picked the gun up the slide was not just closed, but was difficult to open. However, I didn't look close enough to check if the side was completely closed.

This is what I'm most curios about. As time goes on details of the events are getting more blurry. I want to say that I pulled the trigger to make that go off, but now I can't rember if I pulled the trigger on round 59 and 60 just went off? I would think I would remember something like that.

One thing is for sure. Eye witness accounts suck as I can't be sure of the sequence of events anymore.

I'm glad this happened on the range and not in a defensive encounter. Emotional fitness is a tough thing to train, and while I was on the range and not expecting this level of injury, I was very "DONE" after that happened. It took a while for me to calm down and be functional again. I'm glad my injuries were minimal.
Fortunately the incident in question happened at the tail end of the day and didn't spoil a day in the woods completely.
 

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