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Old November 22, 2013, 01:15 PM   #1
skizzums
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vacuuming primers

i was vacuuming my unused guest bedroom where i used to store my components in plastic shopping baskets, as i vacuumed the edge of the wall and the carpet, i was trying to be fully prepared for a "bang" so not to have a heart attack. no bang, all's good. then i went to the bed and started doing half under it and started thinking, if a primer can go off in a vacuum, what if i vacuumed an entire bullet? any chance of it going off and losing my kneecap or worse, or is that very unlikely? anyhow, it made me stop and check under the bed, but who knows whats under my couch.
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Old November 22, 2013, 01:41 PM   #2
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It's highly unlikely a vacuumed bullet would discharge - possible; but not likely. Keep in mind, if it did, the bullet wouldn't go flying. There would be brass shrapnel; but the bullet would hardly move.
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Old November 22, 2013, 01:45 PM   #3
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Law of physics

Law of Physics---for every action there is an equal opposite reaction. Therefore if a round goes off without a chamber around it , what will happen is ,if the case doesn't explode,the lead being heavier than the casing will take off with minimal velocity and the casing will move a somewhat faster than the lead. Doubtful that it would even have enough inertia to even break through the plastic on a vacuum. However there might be a few exceptions ,like a 500 S&W having the larger bullet,lots of powder, and a extra thick case it might have enough ummph to get through . But I think the most dangerous thing to worry about would be the dust exploding!

I remember years ago,when i was a youngster, I was around a campfire and someone threw a few 22s in the fire. The brass when flying but nobody got hurt when it hit them. Then this one guys drunk wife threw a .30 carbine round in the fire. When it went off it hit me . I got hurt , but not from the casing hitting me. It was from the hot casing falling down my shirt burning my belly.
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Old November 22, 2013, 02:20 PM   #4
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There was a thread on here a while back with a link to a very extensive test of bullets being discharged in the open or still in the original boxes . It was done as a fire fighter training video and what they would expect if they had to fight a fire in a gun store or home with lots of ammo inside .

It showed that it is very hard to get a cartridge to fire with out hitting the primer just right with out heat . When they did discharge do to heat they caused very little damage . In most cases the fragments barely penetrated a 5/8" piece of drywall and never made it through plywood . These were all calibers from small hand gun to at least 308 rifle cartridges .

They concluded that yes the discharge of any cartridge outside of a firearms chamber can result in injury . It's not likely the injury would be serious and most likely superficial

It's a very cool video to watch , I'll look for it but if anybody else can post a link go for it .
got it http://www.saami.org/videos/sporting...irefighter.cfm
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Old November 22, 2013, 03:42 PM   #5
WESHOOT2
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powder or primers

I place a mens hankerchief over the nozzle, poke it in with my finger, then vacuum.
The hanky holds the explosive or flammable stuff.
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Old November 22, 2013, 06:39 PM   #6
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Terminology Patrol - it's a dirty job but someone has to do it.

"...an entire bullet..." None of the projectiles I load are explosive. FMJ, lead, round nose, hollow point, plated - yes, but explosive bullets - nary a one. If I even thought about using explosive bullets, well, I wouldn't discuss that on the all access net. Can be sucked up with almost no personal danger from the bullet (technically, destruction of your wife's new vacuum, due to the passage of a 45 Auto FMJ through the innards and gizzards of the machine, could result in personal danger coming from the wife; giving you one more reason to only use her equipment when she's not around).

Cartridge - assembled casing, primer, powder and projectile (often called a bullet). I've never heard of a cartridge detonating inside a vacuum. Perhaps one of those rug beater models could do the job. I suspect the personal danger would be minor (disclaimer: see above warning about destruction of wife's vacuum).

WESHOOT2- Dude, you need to change your vacuum cleaner bag if your vacuum doesn't suck the hanky down the pipe!
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Old November 22, 2013, 07:57 PM   #7
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Personally I would worry more about the potential static build up from the carpet then handling primers. The potential for bad consequences (other than the surprise factor from the bang) of a primer going off in a vacuum cleaner are very low.

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Old November 22, 2013, 08:50 PM   #8
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Been vacuuming up primers for 4 years now. I would like to say I have never lost a good primer in the carpet,but that would be a lie. I have never had one go off. Not sure how it could go off. I mean take a primer and throw it at a wall as hard as you can 1000 times over, bet it won't go off no matter what.
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Old November 22, 2013, 09:22 PM   #9
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I've never had a primer go off unless I physically convinced it to. I use a shop vac to clean up the area around my reloading bench. I figure if a primer is going to go off when vacuum it's because it would hit the impeller. Probably will jinx myself by saying it, but I think as long as your careful you probably won't have a primer go off unintentionally.
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Old November 23, 2013, 08:52 AM   #10
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Metal god I would like to personally thank you for sharing that film, it’s something I have worried about and this helped alleviate that worry.
After saying that I hate you for sharing that,,,,, +2,000,000 rounds?
I’m going to be crying the entire weekend over seeing that much ammo being destroyed.
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Old November 23, 2013, 09:30 AM   #11
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I would say that with most modern residential vacuum cleaners having plastic impellers the odds of a primer being dented exactly right, with enough force is low.

That said, my grandfather had an old Electrolux canister model from the 50's that he used for a shop vac, before there were shop vacs. The old machine was made of metal and bakelite and Grandma had retired it from duty inside the house. He was sweeping the shop and set off a 209 primer which blew the back end of the machine off. The mess with the dust and all was what my Dad described to us when he got home after the uproar. No indication on the condition of Grandpa's drawers.
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Old November 23, 2013, 12:06 PM   #12
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No problem everybody should see that video especially the antis . I can't tell you many non gun people think just having "bullets" oops (sorry serf 'rett ) loaded cartridges around is unsafe .

I would love to see a few of those test done with some ballistic gel 10 to 20 feet away .
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Old November 24, 2013, 03:08 AM   #13
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Yes, that video was awesome and it sucked at the same time. All that ammo....ugh. but none the less, im not at all.concerned about my ammo and a house fire anymore.

And...id.like to chime in and say that i also have been vaccuming primers up with a small shop vac for two years now. Ive probably got about 10,000-15,000 spent primers in that vac as we speak....no "dust ignition" and im sure there are a few live primers in the too. I have smack primers on my bench with hammers, crushed them in my bench vise, dropped entire packs on the concrete garage floor, and even.smashed/crushed them in a case using the loading press....all just to dispell my fear of "kaboom" that everyone keeps talking about on here.
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Old November 24, 2013, 06:58 PM   #14
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cool. makes sense that even if it did happen, the bullets is heavier than the case, so the case would fly and not the bullet.
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Old November 24, 2013, 07:01 PM   #15
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I used to have a little hand-vac which deposited the stuff it sucked into a separate chamber, well away from the motor, which was constructed of plastic and basically not flammable. I could see what was happening to the stuff that went into it, and if there'd ever been a fire I could have dropped it into a steel laundry bucket and made a run for the hose.

Slurp 'em up "blind", together with powder dust, into a ShopVac and then walk away? Hell, no.
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Old November 24, 2013, 07:54 PM   #16
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I just saw an interesting video.

The video series--easily found on YouTube--shows a guy who (for whatever reason) started putting things into a microwave to see what would happen.

Long story short--he microwaved a LIVE .50 BMG round.

Yes, it did go off. Yes, it was spectacular. But here's the important parts:

1. The microwave's door blew off.
2. The bullet (which was placed inside, pointing at the door) barely dug a small dimple into the door. It was laying a few inches outside of the microwave.
3. The damage was caused by the exploding case and the flying primer. The primer appeared to have put a small hole in the back of the microwave. The case appeared to have split into two parts, both heavy and sharp enough to cause injury if you were REALLY close to the cartridge when it detonated.
4. Lots of unburnt powder residue around.

Also worth noting is the fact that the guy had two cameras in operation. One was about a foot from the door, and the other was just a bit farther. The closest one was knocked over, but the further one was still on the tripod undamaged.
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Old November 24, 2013, 08:52 PM   #17
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Quote:
Slurp 'em up "blind", together with powder dust, into a ShopVac and then walk away? Hell, no.
I do it all the time. One of these days, my vacuum may catch fire, but that's nothing, compared to the damage my wife has already done to it.


As for a live cartridge....
There's one important thing to remember - loaded cartridges are essentially a Faraday Cage. Static discharge gets transmitted through the metal outer shell (made of the primer cup, casing, and bullet), and does not arc across the contents.
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Old November 24, 2013, 09:01 PM   #18
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A few years ago my wife vacumned up some rifle primers I had lost in shag carpet. At least one exploded, which in turn caused the wife to explode.
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Old November 25, 2013, 06:04 AM   #19
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cool video, painful to watch though.
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Old November 25, 2013, 06:32 AM   #20
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There is more than one way to build a vacuum cleaner.Most have the turbine downstream of the filter.The turbine pumps filtered,primer free air.

Not so with old Kirbys,maybe similar vintage uprights like a Hoover...

The chunks are picked up by a beater brush then they go through the metallic turbine blades.Sucking up a penny is a whack,rattle bang thing.

Yes,primers going through go bang.I have had that happen...and,so did mom,over 40 yrs ago.She was not pleased.

But,now think of the filter bag being downstream of the turbine.Suppose you sucked up a few oz's of Blue Dot,and a little 4831,some Bullseye,etc into the bag,then a Fed 215 goes off...it could happen that a bag fire of smokeless fed by a 100 mph wind would be sort of bad,especially if 47 other primers made it through...

Gee.I'm sure glad Mom's Kirby never did that.
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Old November 25, 2013, 09:00 AM   #21
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I have done it, heard the bang and smelled the funny smell. A friend grenaded a vaccum doing the same thing. I now use an air vacuum.
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Old November 29, 2013, 01:13 PM   #22
45long
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to Metal God

That Video proved what I said/experienced.. Good one.. Video almost made me cry ,seeing those hundreds of thousands rounds destroyed while in the midst of this ammo shortage.

Next Time though instead of live rounds I want to see what happens to that semi-trailer with 2000 one pound cans of Geox FFFF......
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