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Old November 2, 2014, 11:04 PM   #51
serf 'rett
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Postscript.

Looking at the pictures and computed pressure, I'm of the opinion that more than "luck" was involved in the relative minor damage sustained. Someone was watching over you, is what I'm a thinking.
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Old November 3, 2014, 01:14 AM   #52
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Heal well, my friend. As others have posted, thank you for the courage to admit one's mistake. We could all make this mistake and would be wise to remember that complacency kills. I will check and re-check myself every time at the bench, and the photo you provided will give me the incentive to be vigilant with reloading safety.

This may be more relevant now, as I suspect that many of us have added new powders to our stable due to the shortages. I can think of at least six new powders in my cabinet in the last year and a half. This multiplies our chances of error.

Thank you again for giving me pause. I will take those extra moments at the bench and think of you when I change out powders and calibers.
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Old November 3, 2014, 06:21 AM   #53
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Good thing you're still in one piece.

I know its already been said but never become complacent when it comes to reloading. One moment of "I've been doing this for 20 years, I know what I'm doing" and this could be any of us.
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Old November 3, 2014, 06:25 AM   #54
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Thanks everyone, and yes it was hard to post this. I felt I had to, because I would have never guessed THAT I WOULD HAVE MADE THAT ERROR. I was too smart, to safe, to experienced.

I was so tuned into all the other load data and info I made this horrible mistake. If it keeps 1 person from making an error it was worth posting.
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Old November 3, 2014, 06:34 AM   #55
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Wow, what a great reminder to all of us of what is possible in a worst-case scenario. Sorry you had to pay such a heavy price, hope you have a speedy recovery.
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Old November 3, 2014, 07:30 AM   #56
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Thank you for posting this. I wish you all the best in your recovery and pray it will be a full recovery with no loss of use in your finger.
Yours was a mistake that could happen to anyone of us.
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Old November 3, 2014, 09:34 AM   #57
William T. Watts
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Labeling my powder with date of purchase

I have my storage area laid out from fastest to slowest powder, labels always to the front, each can is clearly identified with an orange sticky dot with the date of purchase. I work only with one container of powder on my bench at a time, I do not work with a progressive setup I do it the old fashion way using a loading tray and weighing charges by hand. When I am finished charging the cases I use a flash light to look into each case to be sure they are charged and the powder level is the same. I look at the powder to be sure it is the correct powder before seating any bullets, just to be sure I weigh a couple of the charges to ensure they are the intended weight. Then I proceed to seat the bullets and may fire a couple over my chrony to verify velocity. I do feel for mr. dkyser who suffered the hand injury, plus I want to thank him for sharing his experience.. I wish you a speedy recovery! William
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Old November 3, 2014, 09:53 AM   #58
Heavy Metal 1
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Hornady's powders need to have more distinct labels and less near same names, i.e. Clays, International clays, universal clays. Self responsibility is boilerplate in everything we do, but some label and name changes are in order IMHO.
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Old November 3, 2014, 10:08 AM   #59
Jim Watson
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There is a constant Internet Whine about the Clays series of powders.

I wonder how come nobody ever had trouble telling the Dot powders apart.
I wonder why nobody complains about how close some of those four digit IMR numbers are.
Good think most of us are not in Australia, some of the ADI designations are really confusing.

Read the label, read the book.
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Old November 3, 2014, 12:31 PM   #60
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Quote:
Hornady's powders
And some may need even more help it seems!
Those are Hodgdon powders.
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Old November 3, 2014, 12:48 PM   #61
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Then there are the REloader series.....What about those pesky Accurate powders....or Norma?

The point,no amount of sidestepping gets around it.

We,the Handloaders,are responsible for our own safety.We,as Handloaders,are responsible for reading the labels using the correct powder.

If I,as a Handloader,believe that Clays vs International Clays is too hard to keep track of,I,as handloader,may choose not to use the Clays series powders.

If I.as Handloader,decide I want color coded powder canisters,What on earth is preventing me from using color code electrical tape,or colored sticky dots,etc,to have my own color code system for my own inventoried powders?

I might only need 6 colors...
Still,I'd need my own color code chart...I prefer to read the label

I respect that the OP takes ownership.

If I was a powder manufacturer,and the attitude that somehow my enterprise was responsible for incidents like this because (fill in the blank) I did not have scratch and sniff labeling,or whatever the nanny state wants...If I was liable because someone failed to read the label.....

Think about it,Handloaders!!How much powder do I have to sell to make enough profit to go to court,face litigation,and cough up a million dollar settlement?
How does that figure into risk/reward?

I'd shut it down.Get out of the business,or charge $250 a pound,only make Red,White,Blue powder,etc.

The ONLY result we will get for shifting responsibility for our own errors onto powder manufacturers will be higher costs and less availability.
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Old November 3, 2014, 12:57 PM   #62
44 AMP
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Best wishes and prayers for a speedy and complete recovery.

THANK YOU! Thank you for posting and the pictures of what happened. We can talk for thousands of words, but those pictures will have a greater impact than anything we can say. Would you consider giving permission for them to be used by others?

I actually had something similar, but fortunately the consequences of my mistake were less severs.

I was 15, and still new to reloading, although I had read the books and numerous magazine articles and loaded several hundred rounds.

Quote:
because I would have never guessed THAT I WOULD HAVE MADE THAT ERROR. I was too smart, to safe, to experienced.
or, as it turned out, I only thought I was.

I was working on a gallery load for a .308 Win. Had some cast bullets and was using Unique powder. I was weighing each charge. BUT, I didn't have a powder trickler, so I just used a fired case, filled it most of the way up, and dribbled powder into the scale pan from it.

My mistake was simply this, the "fired case I used was a primed case, and it got put back in the loading block with the others, bullet seated and off we went.

The rifle was damaged, but repairable. I got a blast of gas on my cheek (glasses probably saved my right eye). Pressure signs on the case, when the gunsmith was finally able to get the bolt open, indicated 90-110,000 psi.

I've kept that case, with its cracked swollen primer pocket and a "belt" of brass swaged on the case ahead of the extractor groove (.308 Win) for over 40 years, as a reminder of what NOT to do.

ONE POWDER on the bench at a time. All powder hoppers emptied at the end of each loading session. And using the right tools for the job, not makeshifts.
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Old November 3, 2014, 01:12 PM   #63
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Not gonna lecture you about your methods, you've gotten enough already, but I'm glad you posted your mishap. A real life reminder for us reloaders to pay attention. Hope you trigger finger wasn't hurt! and wish you a speedy recovery (I think God was lookin' out fer you and you weren't injured more seriously).

Like the Titegroup label says "A little goes a long way"...
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Old November 3, 2014, 01:18 PM   #64
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Quote:
Like the Titegroup label says "A little goes a long way"...
The drawback of being one of the most "economical" powders is that it is also, apparently, one of the most energetic for its volume and weight. Considering that 8 grains makes for a decent .44mag plinking load, 40 grains is scary even to think about.
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Old November 3, 2014, 01:39 PM   #65
mjm
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Judging by the looks of the rifle, I think you are sincerely blessed to be alive. I hope you have a speedy and complete recovery.

With your permission, I would like to download the photos of the rifle and your fingers, for use in training. Back in the 70's, there were a number of rifles in similar condition that were used in Alaska hunter safety courses. The memory of two of them is burned in my mind.
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Old November 3, 2014, 01:41 PM   #66
dkyser
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By all means share this, I certainly am. Its so easy to blow stories off and assume it was careless mistakes.
This case is no different, User Error. Pictures do make it more real. It is an easy fix and hope those who need to make the change do it now.

Will update my status tomorrow after follow up with Surgeon.
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Old November 3, 2014, 03:16 PM   #67
A pause for the COZ
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Thanks for sharing, We are in fact playing with things that can go boom.

Saw a nice Mauser come apart like that. Was not a issue with the wrong powder. Best guess is : Cast boolit, fast rifle powder, seated too far into the lands. Or all of the above with a popped off gas check in the case blocking the neck.
No bullet jump allowed pressure to build to dangerous level.

I know guys like to seat into the lands. Not me..

Last edited by A pause for the COZ; November 3, 2014 at 03:24 PM.
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Old November 3, 2014, 05:04 PM   #68
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OMG. That is scary. I'm glad you got out fairly ok. I hope you heal quickly.

I'm new to reloading and I use Titegroup. Thank you for posting. It really makes me want to be extra careful.
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Old November 3, 2014, 06:17 PM   #69
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Oh boy, I feel your pain. I'm sure it's going to take a couple of months of healing. I pray there is no permanent damage and you make full recovery.

The funny thing is I can see me doing something like that. With two similar containers side by side, I believe it could happen to anyone, so dkyser don't beat yourself too much, you're just human.

Kindest regards
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Old November 3, 2014, 07:11 PM   #70
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HiBC is exactly right here, we can't expect people to save us from our selves. At some point we have to take responsibility for what we are doing and the mistakes that we make. I have to say it is nice to see some one take responsibility for a mistake they made as the O.P. has done.
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Old November 3, 2014, 07:47 PM   #71
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Thank you for sharing the story sir, a fantastic reminder than any one of us can make mistakes. Makes me re-think my plan for chemo recovery and reloading to help fill the time. Maybe I'll do something else instead. God speed in your recovery and healing process.
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Old November 3, 2014, 07:50 PM   #72
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Jeebus....and that was with a fairly sturdy bolt action rifle. I can only imagine what would have happened if it was something less substantial.

I think this story has motivated me to store pistol and rifle powders in different locations and to make sure I read the label carefully each time I reload.

Best,
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Old November 3, 2014, 09:23 PM   #73
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Dkyser,

Wish you a speedy recovery! Glad it was just your hand, and not your face!

Your telling has reminded me of several other, oopsies we'll call them.

First one was a friend of mine. Had an original 1863 Tower Enfield, 68 cal. Was used for many years with blanks doing civil war re-enactments.
He decided he wanted to go muzzle loading deer. (we can see where this is going).
About the 6th live round attempting to get a good pattern, Kaboom..
Breach split on left side. Luckily he's a lefty, and face was on the other side. Was a bulge about 2-3 inches long, you could see the Damascus barrel inside it.

Other was fellow at a match. Had put on new barrel. Was having issues sighting in. Put bore sighter in barrel... Shot bore sighter out of barrel... Looked like a banana peel.
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Old November 4, 2014, 11:24 AM   #74
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Wow!

Thanks for the post, even though you know it came with a healthy slice of humble pie.

But it is posts like this that serve to remind the rest of us that we simply cannot become complacent, and that sometimes we need to evaluate our procedures to see if there are some actions that can be taken that will help prevent bad things later on down the line.

Glad you are going to be OK - and hope you don't have to learn to shoot left handed. I blew the tip of my trigger finger up many years ago framing houses with a nail gun - the scar took a long, long time before I felt normal squeezing a trigger again.
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Old November 4, 2014, 12:45 PM   #75
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I only ever have one can of powder on my bench at a time so I can not get mixed up. I also only load one caliber at a time.
On my bench I will have the one powder, cases and bullets that I am loading.
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