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megimoo
12-28-2010, 08:13 PM
Update: Exploding Bullets Caused Bomb Scare at Miami Airport(bag contained 700 bullet primers)

"This story smells to high heavens..Primers aren't bullets and it takes quite a bit of force to fire one."


A man has been arrested after FBI and TSA officials said his luggage contained volatile gun parts, which caused his bag to explode Tuesday just before it was about to be loaded on a plane.

The unidentified 37-year-old man had 500 to 700 bullet primers in his luggage. Primers are considered the "spark plugs" of a bullet and ignites the gun powder, projecting it toward the intended target.

Officials originally said the exploding bag was caused by a hairspray aerosol can.

The situation turned out to be much more serious and could have been even more dangerous if the bag containing the combustible elements would have exploded while the plane was in the air.

http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/local-beat/Hairspray-Styles-Bomb-Scare-Miami-Aiport.html

Odysseus
12-29-2010, 11:01 AM
Update: Exploding Bullets Caused Bomb Scare at Miami Airport(bag contained 700 bullet primers)

"This story smells to high heavens..Primers aren't bullets and it takes quite a bit of force to fire one."


A man has been arrested after FBI and TSA officials said his luggage contained volatile gun parts, which caused his bag to explode Tuesday just before it was about to be loaded on a plane.

The unidentified 37-year-old man had 500 to 700 bullet primers in his luggage. Primers are considered the "spark plugs" of a bullet and ignites the gun powder, projecting it toward the intended target.

Officials originally said the exploding bag was caused by a hairspray aerosol can.

The situation turned out to be much more serious and could have been even more dangerous if the bag containing the combustible elements would have exploded while the plane was in the air.

http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/local-beat/Hairspray-Styles-Bomb-Scare-Miami-Aiport.html
I can believe that a media hack could mistake bullets for primers and vice versa, and primers can detonate under certain conditions. In tank gunnery, the main gun primers are designed to detonate with an electrical charge (in fact, I recall a master gunner demonstrating this by loading a round and touching the breechblock with a 9-volt battery to fire it). Could a static charge detonate small arms primers? It's possible. Also, reloaders occasionally experience detonations while they are seating primers. See this thread (http://uzitalk.com/forums/showthread.php?t=41598) for an example. If the primers were old or otherwise unstable due to storage conditions, it's possible that they would be volatile enough for one to detonate, and set off the others. It's certainly a rare happening, but not impossible.

I'm not saying that the article is gospel, or that it won't lead to an attempted gun grab by the usual suspects, only that it's possible and that I'd need to see more information before dismissing it.

megimoo
12-29-2010, 11:53 AM
I can believe that a media hack could mistake bullets for primers and vice versa, and primers can detonate under certain conditions. In tank gunnery, the main gun primers are designed to detonate with an electrical charge (in fact, I recall a master gunner demonstrating this by loading a round and touching the breechblock with a 9-volt battery to fire it). Could a static charge detonate small arms primers? It's possible. Also, reloaders occasionally experience detonations while they are seating primers. See this thread (http://uzitalk.com/forums/showthread.php?t=41598) for an example. If the primers were old or otherwise unstable due to storage conditions, it's possible that they would be volatile enough for one to detonate, and set off the others. It's certainly a rare happening, but not impossible.

I'm not saying that the article is gospel, or that it won't lead to an attempted gun grab by the usual suspects, only that it's possible and that I'd need to see more information before dismissing it.

Correct me if I am Incorrect..But..

Primers are normally sold in a conductive plastic substrate in individual little cups/wells with a anti static conductive sheet over the top to keep them in the package.Unless this guy dumped them all out into his bag loose or had them in some metal contained.

The electric fired squibs are used to fire bag bag ammo are just about static proof because of their low resistance.They are also precusion fired rounds and will ignite if crushed.The last tank that I remember that used bag powder was the Russian T-34 .

The Main Battle tanks M1A1 and M2's all use fixed brass with built in squibs.
120mm Tank Gun HE Ammunition
M1028 120mm Canister
M337 HE-MP (IMI)
M337 HE-MP (IMI)
120mm HE Projectile (Rheinmetall)
M830 HEAT
Are you talking about field pieces or MLRS ?

Odysseus
12-29-2010, 12:17 PM
Correct me if I am Incorrect..But..

Primers are normally sold in a conductive plastic substrate in individual little cups/wells with a anti static conductive sheet over the top to keep them in the package.Unless this guy dumped them all out into his bag loose or had them in some metal contained.

The electric fired squibs are used to fire bag bag ammo are just about static proof because of their low resistance.They are also precusion fired rounds and will ignite if crushed.The last tank that I remember that used bag powder was the Russian T-34 .

The Main Battle tanks M1A1 and M2's all use fixed brass with built in squibs.
120mm Tank Gun HE Ammunition
M1028 120mm Canister
M337 HE-MP (IMI)
M337 HE-MP (IMI)
120mm HE Projectile (Rheinmetall)
M830 HEAT
Are you talking about field pieces or MLRS ?

You are correct in every way. And I was talking specifically about M1 Tank 105mm rounds, which were also used on the M-60A3 and M-48A5 tanks, and which could also be detonated if they were improperly stored and subjected to static discharges (which is why we always stored them on pallets, raised off of the ground, when they have been removed from the packaging for loading onto the tanks, or even still in the crates), but the same holds true for current 120 mm main gun rounds.

However, as I said above, if the primers were old or improperly stored, they would have been vulnerable to a static charge causing detonation. Again, not likely, but within the realm of possibility. If this actually occurred the way that the story claims, then the owner was extremely careless and unlucky, again, both of which were possible. Of course, subsequent stories about the evils of transporting primers and other reloading equipment will not make that distinction, nor will they explain the physics of what occurred, except in terms designed to scare readers who don't know the facts. This, BTW, is why gun owners need to be extra careful whenever we encounter legal restrictions, no matter how crazy, because if we do violate them, and something goes wrong, we will all be tarred with the same brush and the accident will be used to justify further restrictions on our rights.

megimoo
12-29-2010, 01:07 PM
You are correct in every way. And I was talking specifically about M1 Tank 105mm rounds, which were also used on the M-60A3 and M-48A5 tanks, and which could also be detonated if they were improperly stored and subjected to static discharges (which is why we always stored them on pallets, raised off of the ground, when they have been removed from the packaging for loading onto the tanks, or even still in the crates), but the same holds true for current 120 mm main gun rounds.

However, as I said above, if the primers were old or improperly stored, they would have been vulnerable to a static charge causing detonation. Again, not likely, but within the realm of possibility. If this actually occurred the way that the story claims, then the owner was extremely careless and unlucky, again, both of which were possible. Of course, subsequent stories about the evils of transporting primers and other reloading equipment will not make that distinction, nor will they explain the physics of what occurred, except in terms designed to scare readers who don't know the facts. This, BTW, is why gun owners need to be extra careful whenever we encounter legal restrictions, no matter how crazy, because if we do violate them, and something goes wrong, we will all be tarred with the same brush and the accident will be used to justify further restrictions on our rights.
Yes you are correct .The anti gun lobby just looks for any excuse to justify grabbing our firearms.Fulminate of mercury was used in percussion caps for years but by now they must have something more stable ?
It is extremely unstable as it ages. It 'sweats' nitrates and just about any shock will ignite it.

In My younger days my brother an I were Black powder musket types.He had an old 'Tower' fifty eight caliber smooth bore and a friend had a Springfield of the same caliber.

They both used french made percussion cups that fit over the 'tit' above the breach.They were extremely unstable especially as they aged.They came in round tins of about fifty cups and banged around in the tins as we walked .

When we had an old tin they would start to leak nitrates and it would crystalize on the tins bottom making for some shaky safety .We would dump them out on a stump and drop flat rocks on the squibs one at a time.Those things have quite a bit of power eventually cracking the rocks.It was a very dumb thing to do with the stray brass shrapnel flying all over the place.

We made our own Miniballs from plumbers lead and had black powder by the pound can.We joined the local gun club to use their rifle range and spent the entire weekend blasting away.By the time we finished off a can of powder we looked like members of Al Jolson's Minstrel show .

As I Recall It was a foggy damp day and there was so much smoke in the air from the black powder that the old time club members were about ready to lynch us .The clouds of white smoke drifter into their skeet range and they couldn't see the Clay pigeon so we beat a hasty retreat .

Odysseus
12-29-2010, 02:38 PM
Love the minstrel show description.

We just had bb guns for our day to day use as kids, with .22s reserved for adult supervision, but then, I grew up in NYC, so it wasn't like you could fire a .22 anywhere safely (except on the subway :D). We used to take the .22 rounds appart, pool the powder from a few of them and make our own fireworks, nothing too elaborate, mostly just genies, but once in a while, somebody got creative with balsa wood gliders or rubber-band prop planes and a moderate payload (a couple of bottle rockets for extra thrust and a homemade firecracker for detonation), which usually meant a nice upward trail followed by a bang, but once in a while, a wing would drop off and the plane would careen back towards us before exploding. I'm sometimes amazed that I survived childhood. :D

megimoo
12-29-2010, 03:34 PM
Love the minstrel show description.

We just had bb guns for our day to day use as kids, with .22s reserved for adult supervision, but then, I grew up in NYC, so it wasn't like you could fire a .22 anywhere safely (except on the subway :D). We used to take the .22 rounds appart, pool the powder from a few of them and make our own fireworks, nothing too elaborate, mostly just genies, but once in a while, somebody got creative with balsa wood gliders or rubber-band prop planes and a moderate payload (a couple of bottle rockets for extra thrust and a homemade firecracker for detonation), which usually meant a nice upward trail followed by a bang, but once in a while, a wing would drop off and the plane would careen back towards us before exploding. I'm sometimes amazed that I survived childhood. :D

When I was a kid every Christmas I would receive a bigger chemistry set than the year before.I made the usual stink bombs and smoke grenades but my first love was explosives.The formula for flash powder I found at the library but my search for a gunpowder formula was much more difficult .

I would test my infernal devices at night in a field behind our house and hide out after the blast until it was quite again. I 'll bet if I tried that in these times the ATF would have my butt in jail.

After college my employment introduced me to a bunch of guys who were the into the same thing as me,bomb making. But by that time I had grown out of such trivial pursuits an into hardware design.

In talking about our common pursuits I found that I was rather benign and normal ,most were far more daring than I .One guy, an MIT chemistry major, made about five gallons of Mercury Fulminate, in his mothers basement Soapstone sink while she was away on vacation .

When it started to react with the metal plumbing and began to out gas and deposit mercuric fulminate in flakes he had to very carefully drain it out with a hose over that back yard grass before it exploded .

One guy had a copy of an sixties bomb makers handbook self published by the revolutionary Weather Underground so I made a few just to check the formula's .Some of those things were so damn powerful that I quit damn quick .