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Old July 12, 2013, 01:53 AM   #1
Machineguntony
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Using lead cast bullets in an MP5

Will using lead cast (unloaded or unjacketed) bullets negatively affect an MP5?

I know you aren't supposed to shoot exposed lead bullets or unjacketed bullets through a silencer, but what if the MP5 is not silenced?

Also, does anyone know the barrel diameter on a pre86 MP5? I am looking at Dardas bullets, and they're saying I need to slug my barrel. Problem is I don't have possession of the gun yet, and I want to order the bullets now, since they're on like a ten week delay.
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Old July 12, 2013, 03:41 AM   #2
JT-AR-MG42
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Googled Dardas and it reads like their loading advice concerning the M-die is sound.
I've never messed with the bolt rollers on a MP-5, but I have dealt with cast lube fouling on a G-3. Both are similar IIRC on the delayed blowback. Messy comes to memory.

M-die drawback for the volume reloader is the time involved and the type of press used. My 550 - 4 station - does not give me the option of using a separate flare die, only the powder drop flare die.

My experience with cast bullets in various blowback sub-guns is that the fouling created by the lubricant is not worth the cleaning time.

I remember carrying and shooting a M-10 with cast bullets in near freezing temperatures while out wandering around one day. Bolt was so sluggish from lube fouling that the only way I got it going again was with the use of oil taken from the dipstick on the rig.
Same fouling from cast with the Cutts on a Thompson. I used a razor blade to shave out the lead/lube from the slots.

My advice for the 9mm subgun would be for jacketed, or at the least, plated bullets. Gun will shoot much cleaner and reliably for extended periods.
I shoot lots of cast bullets. Just not in subs any more.

My .02, JT
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Old July 12, 2013, 08:24 AM   #3
Machineguntony
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Thnx JT
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Old July 12, 2013, 09:19 AM   #4
Theohazard
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Quote:
Machineguntony posted
I know you aren't supposed to shoot exposed lead bullets or unjacketed bullets through a silencer, but what if the MP5 is not silenced?
That's true for the most part, but there are a few center-fire pistol cans that are fine shooting lead. The SWR Octane is, in my opinion, the best pistol can on the market. It's basically a bigger version of their. 22 can, the Spectre, so shooting lead out of it is fine, you'll just have to clean it more.
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Old July 14, 2013, 03:49 PM   #5
tmorone
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You can shoot exposed lead bullets through an Octane? Had no idea, and I've got one of those. Still though... cast bullets and a 500-600 can + 200 for a stamp, ballsy move.
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Old July 14, 2013, 06:47 PM   #6
Machineguntony
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I was told by my silencer dealer, and info online has confirmed, that you aren't supposed to shoot exposed lead bullets through a silencer, but you can so long as you clean their remove the lead from the baffles. The leading won't permanently damage the baffles as long as you clean the baffles. If you don't clean the baffles, the lead will harden on the baffles and then 'weld' itself onto the baffles, eventually damaging the baffles in the silencer.

That's my understanding.
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Old July 14, 2013, 07:06 PM   #7
Willie Lowman
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That's pretty much right. Lead will accumulate and slowly fill up the can reducing it's ability to muffle a gun shot.

I have a take apart .22 can and it is amazing how much lead builds up in it after 1000 rounds.
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Old July 14, 2013, 07:15 PM   #8
JD0x0
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You can shoot lead through a silencer, plenty of people do. Like others have said, you need to clean it often.(as you should anyway) The lead will build up and "fill in" the baffles. The baffles are needed for the silencer/suppressor to do it's job. The baffles are there for the gasses to expand in, which is why a silencer muffles the shot. If the baffles are filled with lead there will be no room for the gasses to expand, so the suppressor wont be able to do it's job properly.
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Old July 14, 2013, 08:32 PM   #9
Machineguntony
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One distinction that makes a lot of sense.

I was told that the silencer will perform better if you DON'T clean it, so long as you don't let there be a lead build up. If there is a lead build up, then you have to clean it.

The reason why an uncleaned silencer performs better is because a an uncleaned silencer has loose carbon in the silencer. The loose carbon acts as a minor dampener, and will reduce the muzzle blast noise by a little bit more.

This means that if you shoot jacketed or plated ammo, you should never clean it because the carbon (NOT lead) buildup enhances performance. Carbon will not damage a silencer, it can not benefit the silencer's performance.

That's what I was told.
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Old July 14, 2013, 11:56 PM   #10
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Quote:
tmorone posted
You can shoot exposed lead bullets through an Octane? Had no idea, and I've got one of those. Still though... cast bullets and a 500-600 can + 200 for a stamp, ballsy move.
The way the Octane is designed, lead bullets are completely fine and won't hurt anything; you'll just have to clean it more often.

A coworker of mine was talking with an SWR rep and the rep suggested shooting .22 through the Octane 9. My coworker pointed out that you're not supposed to shoot lead bullets through a center-fire pistol can, and the rep said it's fine with the Octane; he pointed out that it's basically a bigger version of the .22 Spectre silencer.

So we tried shooting .22 through his Octane 9 and it was quieter than the Spectre or any other .22 silencer we had ever heard. And when it came time to clean it, it was easier to clean than a .22 Spectre with the same number of rounds through it.
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Last edited by Theohazard; July 15, 2013 at 12:18 AM.
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Old July 15, 2013, 12:09 AM   #11
Theohazard
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Quote:
Machineguntony posted
I was told by my silencer dealer, and info online has confirmed, that you aren't supposed to shoot exposed lead bullets through a silencer, but you can so long as you clean their remove the lead from the baffles. The leading won't permanently damage the baffles as long as you clean the baffles. If you don't clean the baffles, the lead will harden on the baffles and then 'weld' itself onto the baffles, eventually damaging the baffles in the silencer.
This is mostly a problem with silencers that have aluminum baffles - aluminum is harder to clean than the stainless steel baffles found on the Octane and top .22 silencers.

It's also a problem with baffle designs that have dater holes: these holes let lead and carbon get between the baffles and the outer tube and build up.

Silencers like the Ti-Rant have both aluminum baffles AND dater holes, meaning the baffles will be both lead-welded to the outside tube AND the baffles will be more delicate to clean once you get them out.

Designs like the Octane prevent lead from getting between the baffles and the tube, and the stainless baffles are more durable and make it much easier to remove the lead.
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Old July 15, 2013, 12:17 AM   #12
Theohazard
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Quote:
Machineguntony posted
I was told that the silencer will perform better if you DON'T clean it, so long as you don't let there be a lead build up. If there is a lead build up, then you have to clean it.

The reason why an uncleaned silencer performs better is because a an uncleaned silencer has loose carbon in the silencer. The loose carbon acts as a minor dampener, and will reduce the muzzle blast noise by a little bit more.

This means that if you shoot jacketed or plated ammo, you should never clean it because the carbon (NOT lead) buildup enhances performance. Carbon will not damage a silencer, it can not benefit the silencer's performance.
Your ears probably won't notice the difference between a clean silencer and one with some carbon build-up. What makes a much bigger difference is if you shoot the silencer wet.

With center-fire rifle silencers, a small carbon build-up will help protect the baffles from erosion due to the high temperatures and pressures. You don't need to clean these because the high pressure keeps the layer of carbon from building up; all the excess carbon is blown out the end of the silencer.

On a pistol silencer, the pressure and heat isn't high enough that the extra carbon makes a noticeable difference in protecting the baffles from erosion. The pressure also isn't always high enough to push all of the excess carbon out of the silencer; shoot enough dirty ammo and you may get enough carbon build-up that it negatively effects performance.

But in most cases, if you only shoot jacketed center-fire pistol ammo out of your pistol silencer, it doesn't really matter if you take it apart and clean it.
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Old July 16, 2013, 07:12 PM   #13
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Good info^

Learn something new every day!
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