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Old January 8, 2013, 10:18 AM   #1
jar4368
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spontaneous discharge

I read an article about a 1911 spontaneous discharge. Has anyone ever heard of something like this? Please explain.

http://www.ajronline.org/content/178/5/1092.full

Last edited by Tom Servo; January 8, 2013 at 02:16 PM.
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Old January 8, 2013, 12:39 PM   #2
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I have never heard of this issue on the 1911 but it was a real issue on Remington 700s that causes some deaths and injures.
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Old January 8, 2013, 01:58 PM   #3
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I've heard of plenty of crazy things before. But despite popular opinion, just because it's on the internet doesn't make it true.
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Old January 8, 2013, 02:04 PM   #4
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guns are a mechanical device
they only work in certain ways,
a random quark doesn't suddenly strike the primer compound of the bullet and make it go boom

and don't expect people to fess up to stupid, like putting a gun into a MRI machine, where it's subject to some VERY IMPRESSIVE physics, WAY WAY WAY out of what any manufacture can or will design a weapon to withstand, in an environment that is rumored to cause certain tattoo inks to heat up, and, when properly tuned can levitate just about anything. And lets not mention the amount of bouncing around and that NOBODY knows the state the safety was in, only that the officer WHO WAS DUMB ENOUGH TO TAKE A GUN INTO A MRI, said he had it on safe.....


once again, what's the point, people do stupid?

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Old January 8, 2013, 02:51 PM   #5
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The event happened years ago (pre 2007). It is not a "spontaneous discharge" but an accidental discharge due to impact. 1911s have the ability to discharge when dropped unless modified with something like a firing pin safety. Series 80 Colts have this, but the Colt in the incident did not. The gun impacted on the muzzle. Inertia drove the firing pin foward through the tension of the spring just as would happen if struck from the rear by the hammer, resulting in the discharge.
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Old January 8, 2013, 02:57 PM   #6
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The Remington 700 had an issue, identified by a Remington engineer, where if the trigger got jostled while the safety was engaged, the striker could release when the safety was disengaged.

The 1911, never heard of such.

I have heard of sears wearing out, or more likely being shade-tree gunsmithed a hair too much.
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Old January 8, 2013, 03:12 PM   #7
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MRI's are incredibly strong. Part of my former job role was supplying gas cylinders in a hospital environment, and a surprising number of people have been killed when a steel cylinder was brought into an MRI environment by mistake. It wouldn't surprise me at all the a non-Series 80 would discharge under those circumstances.
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Old January 8, 2013, 03:16 PM   #8
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I don't think impact alone was the cause, though it was a factor.
The entire pistol was drawn by an extremely powerful magnetic field. When the pistol made contact it stopped but the firing pin was still drawn by the field, that magnetic attaction with the addition of inertia of the mass flying through the air allowed the pin to strike with much greater force than if simply dropped or even thrown at the same velocity.

The Magnetic field was obviously much stronger than the gravitional field at this localized point in space, otherwise the pistol would have dropped to the floor rather than flying near parallel to the surface of the earth.
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Old January 8, 2013, 03:21 PM   #9
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Have seen a floor buffer pulled into the donut magnet from quite a ways. These are very strong magnets and I can imagine the force at which the gun struck the donut as it was drawn inside.
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Old January 8, 2013, 05:22 PM   #10
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It couldn't have been "spontaneous" it had to be deliberate.
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Old January 8, 2013, 05:35 PM   #11
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A 1.5 Tesla magnet is strong enough to launch a four foot oxygen canister clear across the room, lift a four hundred pound hospital bed, and rip shrapnel out of people's bodies--or burn them.

I would totally believe that the firing pin block was disengaged by the magnetic field.
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Old January 9, 2013, 06:33 PM   #12
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Hospitals are dangerous places.
Probably more people die there than anywhere else.
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Old January 9, 2013, 08:13 PM   #13
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Either someone bubba'd a 1911 trigger job, or, more likely, they're too embarrassed to admit they messed up.
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Old January 9, 2013, 08:22 PM   #14
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Never heard about a 1911 doing it.

The whole R700 "thing" was a bunch of horse hockey gun grabber propaganda that was used as a base for lawsuits against Remington because some (several) idiots negligence. That load of bull was completely and fully debunked years ago.
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Old January 9, 2013, 09:22 PM   #15
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Read the link. The magnet pulled the gun into it with enough force for the firing pin to hit the primer. This will happen to almost any gun if dropped hard enough and if it hits at the right angle. This is no mystery.


Quote:
The whole R700 "thing" was a bunch of horse hockey gun grabber propaganda that was used as a base for lawsuits against Remington because some (several) idiots negligence. That load of bull was completely and fully debunked years ago.
Remington 700's have been discharging without pulling the trigger for 60 years. There have been thousands of documented cases. Remingtons own people discovered the flaw in 1946 and urged a trigger redesign. That load of bull was proven beyond any doubt to anyone willing to pull their heads out of the sand before most of were born. It has been common knowledge to anyone with any gun knowedge since the 1970's. Just because some guys just heard the news a couple of years ago they are convinced it is a plot by CNBC. CNBC reported nothing that hasn't been well known since before TV existed.
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Old January 9, 2013, 09:46 PM   #16
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+1 & 1 jmr40.

Of course if the Rem 700 thing had been debunked as claimed, you have have to wonder about the $20 million or so known lost lawsuit payments and the numerous other 'settlements' they keep paying out.
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Old January 9, 2013, 10:15 PM   #17
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DoubleNaughtSpy said:
Quote:
It is not a "spontaneous discharge" but an accidental discharge due to impact. 1911s have the ability to discharge when dropped unless modified with something like a firing pin safety. Series 80 Colts have this, but the Colt in the incident did not.
Ah, but this one did have a firing pin block, as explained in the article and shown in Fig. 2d.
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Old January 9, 2013, 10:17 PM   #18
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Quote:
Double Naught Spy

It is not a "spontaneous discharge" but an accidental discharge due to impact. 1911s have the ability to discharge when dropped unless modified with something like a firing pin safety. Series 80 Colts have this, but the Colt in the incident did not.
The linked article states:
Quote:
The officer was carrying a model 1991 A-1 compact .45 caliber semiautomatic pistol (Colt's Manufacturing, Hartford, CT).
According to my research the Colt 1991 A-1 has a firing pin block. Colt 1991 A-1 is supposed to be the same as a 1911 series 80 with the only differences being a matte finish and checkered rubber grip panels to save money, so as to able to sell it at a lower price (sort of an economy model).

The writer of the article contends that the strong magnetic field produced by the MRI presents a unique environment which seems to have moved the firing pin safety into a position which allowed the firing pin to impact the chambered cartridge's primer. The force of impact of the holstered 1991 seems to have been sufficient to create enough inertia for the firing pin to strike the prime hard enough to detonate it.

If the facts of the incident are accurate, I'd say that using either term "spontaneous discharge" or "accidental discharge" would be correct.
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Old January 9, 2013, 11:32 PM   #19
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Quote:
If the facts of the incident are accurate, I'd say that using either term "spontaneous discharge" or "accidental discharge" would be correct.
"Spontaneous discharge" would definitely not be correct. Anything spontaneous happens without outside initiation. For instance, barns have burned down due to spontaneous combustion of the hay stored there. Especially if the hay is not completely cured when put in the barn, as it continues to cure it generates heat. That heat can build up inside the hay to set in on fire. When I was a kid growing up on a farm, a neighbor's barn burnt just that way.

I am not even sure I would call that an accidental discharge. Definitely an unintended discharge.
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Old January 9, 2013, 11:53 PM   #20
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JMR 40....I'll put it simpler, haven't heard of a 1911 just 'going off" to date. also.while not even on topic...wrong and wrong..."some guys" should stick their heads back in the sand and stop spouting dated information from a run of rifles that old problems have long been fixed. Anyone un knowledgeable with guns or acting foolish with an un altered weapon of any kind "could" have the weapon "discharge" without the trigger being pulled.
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Old January 10, 2013, 08:55 AM   #21
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Quote:
According to my research the Colt 1991 A-1 has a firing pin block.
Ah, sure enough!

Quote:
JMR 40....I'll put it simpler, haven't heard of a 1911 just 'going off" to date. also.while not even on topic...wrong and wrong..."some guys" should stick their heads back in the sand and stop spouting dated information from a run of rifles that old problems have long been fixed.
http://billingsgazette.com/news/stat...eda26802f.html
http://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/201...-trigger-suit/
http://www.bizjournals.com/prnewswir.../06/14/DA24888
http://guncounter.bob-owens.com/2010...efect-lawsuit/

For a problem long fixed, Remington keeps paying out money in lawsuits. I wonder why.

However, the Walker Fire Control problems are nothing like the MRI incident.
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Old January 10, 2013, 09:24 AM   #22
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This is the handgun forum, folks.

You want to talk about Remington's issues with their trigger design (and hell, I knew about this issue when I was working for NRA in the 1990s ), please take it to the rifle forums.
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Old January 10, 2013, 09:51 AM   #23
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Either someone bubba'd a 1911 trigger job, or, more likely, they're too embarrassed to admit they messed up.
I highly doubt that..A LE handgun cannot be modified in any way if the officer is carrying it.

He was off duty, so it might have been his personal gun. So a small part of my mind is contradicting itself.

I'm going to just say it had to have been the strength of that magnet that cause the firing pin to blow forward.

I really want to know how this happened. It's grinding my gears lol.
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Old January 10, 2013, 10:09 AM   #24
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I sure hope none of them Glock guys read this, they'll be a-braggin' the benefits of plastic.
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Old January 10, 2013, 10:10 AM   #25
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Just because someone's not supposed to do something doesn't mean they won't do something. That's why we have prisons and jails.
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