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Thread: Round stuck in chamber

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
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    Round stuck in chamber

    A day or two ago I started a thread " Remington 700 bolt issues", had a live round in chamber and could not open or close the bolt. Took the gun to a smith who got the bolt out, the extractor tore a bit of the case head off. Fortunately, the bolt handle is still attached, unfortunately the round is still in the chamber. I have the action back.
    Question is, has anyone used the stuck case extractor Brownells sells, or is there a better/different method I could consider trying?
    Any suggestions would be appreciated.
    Marc Hallowell

  2. #2
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    I don't know how much of the case head is exposed (post picture), but would it be possible to cool the case head with liquid nitrogen and shrink the brass while prying carefully on the rim? nhk

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by wolf creek View Post
    A day or two ago I started a thread " Remington 700 bolt issues", had a live round in chamber and could not open or close the bolt. Took the gun to a smith who got the bolt out, the extractor tore a bit of the case head off. Fortunately, the bolt handle is still attached, unfortunately the round is still in the chamber. I have the action back.
    Question is, has anyone used the stuck case extractor Brownells sells, or is there a better/different method I could consider trying?
    Any suggestions would be appreciated.
    Marc Hallowell
    I had a stuck live round in a vintage Sako Vixen several years ago and ordered the tool sold by Brownells. Unfortunately the tool is made to fit a Remington 700 and it would not fit in my Sako but am certain it would have done the job in a Remington. The tool has a split collet that fits around the case head. Attached to the end of the tool is a 'slam' hammer piece of round stock. A quick slam hammer will dislodge the case. If it doesn't work, Brownells is great about returns.

    Chino69

  4. #4
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    Marc

    Remington extractors are pretty tough aren't they? Did your smith "proof" the bolt handle or did he pull the rim off the case with the action threads?

    With a 223 case head, a Remington barrel has about 0.160" space to access the remaining rim. Secure the barrel muzzle down, lube the case with Kroil or another penetrating oil and pry the case up and out with two opposing levers, screwdrivers or similar. If the rest of the rim comes off before the cartridge comes out I have another idea that involves a pit, sandbags and a propane torch.

    I drove a stuck cartridge out with a cleaning rod once a long time ago but now catalog that as one of many near death experiences.

    Greg

  5. #5
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    Jul 2004
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    The best way I've found to get a stuck case OR.................

    live round out of the chamber, is to stand the rifle on its butt, and put the largest rod in, that the bore will accept. Then, raise the rod as far as you can, and allow it to drop. Keep your face and hands out of the way, and control the muzzle somewhat away from you as you allow the rod to drop. DO NOT PUSH OR POUND ON THE ROD because that will only mess things up.

    Now, the 64 dollar question.....If you have a live round stuck in the bore, and the bolt was firmly locked, why didn't you just change it to an empty case, by pulling the trigger??? The empty case will be a heck of a lot easier to retrieve than a live one, and present a far lower risk. If you got the round chambered and the bolt securely locked, just fire it. If everyone wants to rush downrange, I'm sure they'll understand if you tell them its LIVE and doesn't want to come out. Then if the case is stuck, it should come out, easily, using the above technique, you may have to raise that rod as much as a half-dozen times, but it will come out. I've gotten many out for people at the range, but only the ones who'll listen and not pound on the rod, that's the secret.

  6. #6
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    Mar 2004
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    Smith did not remove the barrel, it is still attached to the action. I assume I was real lucky he did not break the bolt handle off. I can't think of how else he might have gotten the bolt out. Have a friend I think has an action wrench for a 700. That's next. Will try penitrating oil and liquid nitrogen as suggested (if I can find some) or put it in the freezer overnight and try the pry method. Old enough not to want to try hammering it outfrom the muzzle - although there was a time when I probably would have at least tried it. Boy - in 50 yrs. of reloading and shooting I've not managed to screw something up to this degree
    Thanks for the suggestions.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by brian roberts View Post
    live round out of the chamber, is to stand the rifle on its butt, and put the largest rod in, that the bore will accept. Then, raise the rod as far as you can, and allow it to drop. Keep your face and hands out of the way, and control the muzzle somewhat away from you as you allow the rod to drop. DO NOT PUSH OR POUND ON THE ROD because that will only mess things up.

    Now, the 64 dollar question.....If you have a live round stuck in the bore, and the bolt was firmly locked, why didn't you just change it to an empty case, by pulling the trigger??? The empty case will be a heck of a lot easier to retrieve than a live one, and present a far lower risk. If you got the round chambered and the bolt securely locked, just fire it. If everyone wants to rush downrange, I'm sure they'll understand if you tell them its LIVE and doesn't want to come out. Then if the case is stuck, it should come out, easily, using the above technique, you may have to raise that rod as much as a half-dozen times, but it will come out. I've gotten many out for people at the range, but only the ones who'll listen and not pound on the rod, that's the secret.
    Could not change it to an empty case (if I could have, I would have shot the woodchuck), The bolt would not rotate to lock the lugs.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Culpepper View Post
    Marc

    Remington extractors are pretty tough aren't they? Did your smith "proof" the bolt handle or did he pull the rim off the case with the action threads?

    With a 223 case head, a Remington barrel has about 0.160" space to access the remaining rim. Secure the barrel muzzle down, lube the case with Kroil or another penetrating oil and pry the case up and out with two opposing levers, screwdrivers or similar. If the rest of the rim comes off before the cartridge comes out I have another idea that involves a pit, sandbags and a propane torch.

    I drove a stuck cartridge out with a cleaning rod once a long time ago but now catalog that as one of many near death experiences.

    Greg
    Gee Greg, I hope we don't have to powow on the pit idea - I guess time will tell. Thanks

  9. #9
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    Jul 2004
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    964

    Nope, y'never want to..................

    "hammer it out" that's why I said let it "drop", not slam, or whack. I have had, and watched a few who had, a bolt handle that would not close. It'd get more than half, about 3/4 or so of the way closed, then they'd decide to change their minds, and open it back up......Wrong-O-Rootie. If that happens, I have had to put the heel of my hand on the top of the handle, then grasp the bottom of the stock or triggerguard w/the fingers to exert enough force to close the bolt. Then fire the gun. It sounds like its too late for that now, but in the future, you might find that helpful, if this comes up again. I found my mistake usually came from a distraction while handloading.....

  10. #10
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    Will try penitrating oil and liquid nitrogen as suggested (if I can find some) or put it in the freezer .

    Go to an electronics parts store like radio shack, they have a thing called freeze spray which is used to find temperature related component problems, the stuff gets damn cold( instatant frost)

    DR

  11. #11
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    how much of the case head was ripped off?

  12. #12
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    I don't believe anyone has mentioned this, but is this the correct round for this chamber. Why is it stuck. Wrong cartridge? Neck too large? Case too long? Knowing this might make the problem easier to solve.

    Donald

  13. #13
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    Mar 2004
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    The only portion of the case head missing is the width of the extractor.
    Was the right round for the gun, loaded that morning, second firing of that case, case had been trimmed originally and length not checked that morning, not a tight neck chamber. Other rounds from the same batch of brass and loaded at the same time functioned fine earlier in the day. Hope to find out why/what I did wrong once the round is out. One thing for sure, I learned not to try and force a bolt closed if a round does not chamber easily, if I had not, I am sure the round would have extracted. If had been shooting targets, probably would have paid more attention to how the round was chambering instead of focusing on the woodchuck.
    I appreciate the responses.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
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    Working with the general public a few days a weeks as a commercial gunsmith, I get lots of these stuck rounds to deal with. Gentler is better and that is the way to proceed, but sometimes nothing works and you are the last resort to get things fixed. Now there is stuck, really stuck and @#@! stuck. At level three (often because the customer has already tried his best to remove the rim, has pounded, etc.) you need to resort to the hammer and rod method. The rod needs to be almost bore diameter with a cone shaped (center drill) end to center on the bullet nose and a small outside radius to prevent bore damage. The rifle is placed in a padded vise and the muzzle is pointed up and in a safe direction. Pour in lots of Kroil. Make sure that the primer cannot hit a sharp place on the way out (plug the bolt raceway with something soft). Put on safety glasses and gloves and if you are a pessimist, hearing protection. Now take a large hammer and tap the end of the rod. Tap again. We are looking for good momentum here, not peening blows. Often it will come out with a few light taps. If not, increase the strength of the blows until the rod starts to move downward.. At this point the round may not have come out, but you will have succeeded in driving the bullet into the case (stage 3 stuck). Pour in WD 40, Kroil or other liquid into the bore to help kill the now exposed powder/primer and give it a few minutes to work. Then you can seriously lay on the hammer and things will soon come loose.

    This sounds dangerous, but is only marginally so. If the case explodes it will mostly work at blowing itself out of the gun and tearing it's own head off. Some brass shrapnel blowing out at the chamber would be the worst of the scenerio, This obviously would not be good and needs to be protected against, but it is really unlikely as I have done many of these over the years and never had a round go off - there is nothing to ignite the powder except the very shielded primer or an unlikely spark off the rod. I keep my hands, etc away from the muzzle and breech. As a side comment, I also charge the customer double the normal rate for the "pucker factor". If a slide hammer puller with a case head attachment is available and use of freon "cooling" sprays are at hand, give them a try first, but the hammer and rod method always works.

    Scott

  15. #15
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    Good explanation Scott.

    al

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