View Full Version : Kaboom in .40 Beretta

September 11, 2005, 09:53 PM
I went shooting today with a friend from work. He has invited me on a hog hunt on his family's land in October so it seemed the least I could do to provide a place to sight in rifles. After a rather uneventful rifle shooting session he suggested shooting handguns. I was shooting some hot handloads in my .45 Colt 4 5/8" Blackhawk. He was shooting a Glock 23 at another target. When he came back to the shooting table I noticed he was loading the mag with soft round nose lead 180 grain .40 S&W ammo. I casually mentioned that it is generally accepted that soft lead bullets in a Glock is NOT a good idea. He shrugged off my advice and pulled out a .40 S&W Beretta. This to he loaded with the soft lead round nose ammo. I was looking at the box while he was shooting. The ammo was made by Lancer Ammo. It had Winchester brass and soft round nose lead bullets that you could dent with your finger nail. After about ten rounds I heard my friend cry out in pain. He brought me the pistol and the bar that runs between the trigger and the sear was blown almost all the way off! Only the hard rubber grips were preventing it from dropping off. The small spring that works the bar was broken and my friend's hand was powder burned. When we freed the slide It ejected a shell that was a classic Kaboom. The ENTIRE unsupported area of the shell was peeled back.
My friend seemed uninformed of what a Kaboom was and how close he had just come to injury. I gently tried to explain that this was what I was trying to tell him about soft lead bullets in his G23. However, I had no idea that the Beretta would Kaboom with this ammo. I just checked the Lancer site and they stated thier brass is "remanufactured" but I did not see them listing the kind of soft lead 180 grain .40 bullets that blew up today.

September 11, 2005, 11:04 PM
Is the Beretta a fully supported chaber? help me out on this one. I wont own a Glock for this reason and the XD is a better handgun in my opinion anyway

September 11, 2005, 11:57 PM
Any gun can kB! under the proper conditions.

If he'd been using that ammo or other similar ammo for awhile (other range trips) and wasn't careful about removing the lead fouling, it was a disaster waiting to happen. Heavy leading amounts to a partial bore obstruction with predictable results.

September 15, 2005, 04:50 PM

Thanks for the informative post.

September 15, 2005, 05:35 PM
are there different kind of lead bullets? i got a 96D today and i got some lead bullets but they won't dent by my finger nails. however u can scratch off and make the bullet shinier. the brand is ultramax remanufactured 180gr.

also in the manual it says that u can shoot lead bullets, only a certain type. and u have to clean before shooting normal jacketed bullets.

can any one let me know if it is safe to shoot these bullets?

September 15, 2005, 10:29 PM
not sure... I only shoot FMJ ammo inc WinClean (jacketed soft point)

September 15, 2005, 10:31 PM
double tap....

September 15, 2005, 10:31 PM
local gun shop said they've had sigs, glocks, berettas, springfields, and 1911's blow up. It happens to all guns. He said if you were shooting your handloads, dont bother trying to bring the gun back to the store. If you were shooting factory loads, try to save that piece of brass and that box of ammo that it came from.

September 16, 2005, 02:46 AM
Would anyone mind terribly explaining to me what an unsupported chamber is?


September 16, 2005, 03:01 AM
I honestly pray and hope that i never KB anything that im shooting in my hands. It sounds painful. Ive had firecrackers go off in my fingers. I can only imagine this :eek: !

September 16, 2005, 01:11 PM
Is the Beretta a fully supported chaber? help me out on this one. I wont own a Glock for this reason and the XD is a better handgun in my opinion anyway


For starters, ANY handgun using the Browning type linkless locking system is going to be lacking SOME chamber support around the 6 o'clock area. The more support, the less likely it is to be reliable(or the more work required to find what is reliable) when feeding hollowpoints. This is what makes Glocks one of the few pistols that will eat dirt right out of the box. So, I guess you should look at any Browing based pistol then.

This has been a rumor that has been passed around way to many times, and it's rather ignorant to blame just Glock. It is the result of ignorant people using poor quality or over used brass in their reloads, or poor quality factory ammunition.

AZ Jeff
September 16, 2005, 01:14 PM
A "kaboom" (abbreviated kB!) is when a cartridge case ruptures when in the chamber in such a way that the hot propellant gases exit out the breech area of the firearm.

Obviously, when gases at 15,000+ psi start rushing back thru small spaces, bad things can and will happen, resulting in damage to the firearm and/or injury to the shooter.

Kabooms can happen in ANY GUN. All it takes is the right combination of conditions. Some guns are more sensitive to kB!'s that others, but ALL can have it happen.

Here are some contributors to a kaboom:
1. poorly loaded ammo, where the bullet sets back in the case
2. weak brass, either due to excessive reloads and/or poor metallurgy
3. bore and/or chamber restrictions, such as fouling, lead buildup, etc.
4. weak recoil springs that fail to return the breech fully to battery

Again, I must emphasize--ANY GUN can have a kaboom. To avoid kabooms, here are some suggestions:

1. keep your firearm clean, especially the chamber and bore. Don't let fouling build up in the barrel and/or chamber.
2. use only new ammo, or that reloaded by someone of known reputation. (I have loaded ammo for 35+ years, and only use my own reloads or that of a FEW selected friends.)
3. keep your firearm in good working order.

September 16, 2005, 02:24 PM
If you blow up a Glock, even if you're using lead reloads assembled by your former brother-in-law-who-hates-you, do not throw the pieces away. Return the pieces to Glock, and they'll replace the pistol at about 1/2 price. IF you're using factory ammo, chances are you'll get a free new Glock.