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    Default stuck bullet

    what is your best method for removing a 223 bullet that is stuck in about 3 in. in the barrel .

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    take it to the gunsmith.

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    .22 is a tough one. Bigger stuff can be hammered out with a wooden dowel. A tight fitting brass rod would be my first choice, if you can find one that long. I would avoid steel (even mild steel) if at all possible because one wrong whack could seriously damage the bore.

    What kind of gun? If it's something like an AR where the barrel can be easily removed from the receiver, I might try some sort of setup to use air or hydraulic pressure to force it out. Just a thought.

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    Black power shooters have a device which screws into the lead, looks like a corkscrew, to extract those bullets. Maybe a small brass cabinet screw brazed on a rod?

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    I don't know if you know if its one or more than one, 3 inches is pretty close to the end, I'd drill it if it did not move easily with the brass or steel rod. if its one you have a good chance with a rod kept as short as possible, if more than one you not stand much chance IMHO

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    Well whatever you do don't put any wood in the barre! LOL

    For those who have never done it: Make up a grease delivery system as shown. Its just a right angle hole in a piece of brass with a zerk fitting and a tapered plug at one end a few thousandths over groove diameter. Make up a copper piston .002 over groove diameter one caliber in length. Acquire a 20,000 PSI Alemite or the like high pressure grease gun. A ladies grease gun won't work. Neither will the one the pot grower down the block use's to grease his lawn mower. You will also need a full 3 foot stick of drill rod that fits the barrel as close as possible and lightly round one end and polish the end to matchless.

    Oil the inside of the barrel and grab the chamber end of the barrel in a padded 3 jaw chuck in the lathe and clamp it tight so it can't slip.

    Hold the grease delivery in a chuck or collet and use the tailstock to press in the grease delivery system into the muzzle of the barrel. The barrel will cut into the brass and seal the bore grease and air tight.

    Attach the grease gun. These high pressure grease guns have a locking collar so they don't blow off and begin pumping. Air in the barrel will slip past the bullet but grease will not.

    If the grease gun won't budge it "sometimes this happens" remove the grease gun and put the barrel in a padded vise and fill the remainder of the barrel with grease.

    Hammer in the copper piston and get it started down the bore with a copper or brass punch. The grease is non-compressible like any other fluid and will not bind on the sides of the barrel like a rod will when you apply pressure.

    lock the drill rod in the 3 jaw or even better an ER40 collet in the headstock with about an inch sticking out to push on the brass or copper piston, driving the barrel on a center with the tailstock. Move the bullet only one inch at a time so the drill rod is supported in the barrel until the bullet begins to move freely. Then you can take 3 inch bites until its free.

    Most tailstocks will deliver 40,000 PSI to the back of the bullet. In rare case's I have had to make up a second piston when the rod begins to bend and bind in the barrel but only once or twice. I have removed probably one or two bullets a year over the last 31 years using this method. They ALWAYS come out and I have never damaged a barrel. Clean up is a pain in the ass and I charge $150 for 22 RF bullets and $200 for jacketed rifle bullets. It takes 2 - 3 hours to set up and complete. The brass delivery system has to be re-made every second time. The larger the diameter of bullet, the easier they come out.

    gunsmith-rod-henrickson-stuck-bullet.jpggunsmith-rod-henrickson-stuck-bullet1.jpggunsmith-rod-henrickson-stuck-bullet2.jpggunsmith-rod-henrickson-stuck-bullet3.jpg



    gunsmith-rod-henrickson-stuck-bullet4.jpg

    ADD NOTE: You can re-thread a few zerk fittings to fit muzzle loader nipple holes and flinter flash hole sleeves. Stuck balls, maxie's and minnie's come out as fast as you can work the grease gun. Don't forget to charge for the tube of grease with muzzle loaders. It takes almost a half tube.

    ADD NOTE: Always push the bullets backwards the way they went in from muzzle to chamber. They always seam to come out better. I know that does not make a lot of sense the barrel should be the same size all the way through, but they do seam to push easier following their path in.
    Last edited by speerchucker30x3; 07-15-2012 at 10:00 PM.

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    If you try driving it out with drill rod, make sure there is no oil in the barrel. I have heard that if oil is present, it becomes a diesel engine and the rod, i.e. piston, comes flying out backwards.

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    Quote Originally Posted by speerchucker30x3 View Post
    Well whatever you do don't put any wood in the barre! LOL

    For those who have never done it: Make up a grease delivery system as shown. Its just a right angle hole in a piece of brass with a zerk fitting and a tapered plug at one end a few thousandths over groove diameter. Make up a copper piston .002 over groove diameter one caliber in length. Acquire a 20,000 PSI Alemite or the like high pressure grease gun. A ladies grease gun won't work. Neither will the one the pot grower down the block use's to grease his lawn mower. You will also need a full 3 foot stick of drill rod that fits the barrel as close as possible and lightly round one end and polish the end to matchless.

    Oil the inside of the barrel and grab the chamber end of the barrel in a padded 3 jaw chuck in the lathe and clamp it tight so it can't slip.

    Hold the grease delivery in a chuck or collet and use the tailstock to press in the grease delivery system into the muzzle of the barrel. The barrel will cut into the brass and seal the bore grease and air tight.

    Attach the grease gun. These high pressure grease guns have a locking collar so they don't blow off and begin pumping. Air in the barrel will slip past the bullet but grease will not.

    If the grease gun won't budge it "sometimes this happens" remove the grease gun and put the barrel in a padded vise and fill the remainder of the barrel with grease.

    Hammer in the copper piston and get it started down the bore with a copper or brass punch. The grease is non-compressible like any other fluid and will not bind on the sides of the barrel like a rod will when you apply pressure.

    lock the drill rod in the 3 jaw or even better an ER40 collet in the headstock with about an inch sticking out to push on the brass or copper piston, driving the barrel on a center with the tailstock. Move the bullet only one inch at a time so the drill rod is supported in the barrel until the bullet begins to move freely. Then you can take 3 inch bites until its free.

    Most tailstocks will deliver 40,000 PSI to the back of the bullet. In rare case's I have had to make up a second piston when the rod begins to bend and bind in the barrel but only once or twice. I have removed probably one or two bullets a year over the last 31 years using this method. They ALWAYS come out and I have never damaged a barrel. Clean up is a pain in the ass and I charge $150 for 22 RF bullets and $200 for jacketed rifle bullets. It takes 2 - 3 hours to set up and complete. The brass delivery system has to be re-made every second time. The larger the diameter of bullet, the easier they come out.


    ADD NOTE: You can re-thread a few zerk fittings to fit muzzle loader nipple holes and flinter flash hole sleeves. Stuck balls, maxie's and minnie's come out as fast as you can work the grease gun. Don't forget to charge for the tube of grease with muzzle loaders. It takes almost a half tube.

    ADD NOTE: Always push the bullets backwards the way they went in from muzzle to chamber. They always seam to come out better. I know that does not make a lot of sense the barrel should be the same size all the way through, but they do seam to push easier following their path in.


    This is one mighty fine system.
    I have one in the shop right now to try it out on, a 1903-A3 with jacket bullet 1 inch into the throat, along with remnants of the ownwer's and his friends attempts to get it out. Sometimes that is worse than the stuck bullet.
    A guy brought me one a while back that had what was left of a dime store segmented cleaning rod, and 3 nut picks ((!!??!) jammed in the bore.


    Go figure.



    Just to be clear, the way I read it, the first attemt is grease only? Also, have you tried brass barbed fittings (barbed on one end and male pipe thread on the other) for the barrel/tool interface? Seems they would be easier to replace rather than making a whole new tool every second use.
    Ken

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    I know people will cring when I tell this story, but here it goes. I stuck a .224" bullet about 8" past the chamber on a Valmet .223 rifle. I fired a blank round to remove it. No barrel bulge, no problems and virtually no noise. I placed the rifle on the other side of a cement block wall to place a barrier between me and any possible explosion.

    I imagine that simply loading an empty primed case (no bullet and no powder) and firing it in a safe direction would probably accomplish the same thing. A lot more power is created simply by popping a primer than most people imagine. I doubt that this would be dangerous and it's worth a try.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kendog View Post
    This is one mighty fine system.
    I have one in the shop right now to try it out on, a 1903-A3 with jacket bullet 1 inch into the throat, along with remnants of the ownwer's and his friends attempts to get it out. Sometimes that is worse than the stuck bullet.
    A guy brought me one a while back that had what was left of a dime store segmented cleaning rod, and 3 nut picks ((!!??!) jammed in the bore.


    Go figure.



    Just to be clear, the way I read it, the first attemt is grease only? Also, have you tried brass barbed fittings (barbed on one end and male pipe thread on the other) for the barrel/tool interface? Seems they would be easier to replace rather than making a whole new tool every second use.
    Ken
    I'm not to sure what you mean by a barbed fitting ken. I used to screw the barrel off and screw a cap with a zerk fitting on it to the barrel threads but it meant removing the barrel every time and you had to drive the bullet from chamber to muzzle which is more difficult than going the other way. I only press out one or two bullets a year so for me re-cutting the plug on the delivery system is no big deal. Its just another 15 minutes I tack on to the W/O. I suppose if I was doing it once a week I would sit down and think up a system that was less destructive to tooling. At any rate doing it this way means I don't have to remove the barrel or damage the crown so its a trade off I guess.

    I always make a piston before I tie up the lathe with the job but, I always try to get the bullet out with the grease gun first. But irregardless, you have to have a barrel full of grease for the piston to push on if the grease gun won't budge it. You don't have to make up the piston to push the grease with unless the grease gun fails to push it out. But every time I don't make the piston first the grease gun fails. Murphys law I guess.

    The grease merely replaces 10 or 20 inches of rod in the barrel. If you had 10 or 20 inches of rod in the barrel the bending of the rod and the upsetting against the barrel eats up all your pushing force that's why its almost impossible to push them out with rods alone. With grease in a tube if you apply 10 pounds of force to one end of a 20 foot tube you have 20 pounds of force at the other end. Fluids are non compressible. In essence its the flex in the retaining walls of your vessel that give you retained pressure.

    The grease will flow passed most of the other obstructions and push out the bullet. The problem I have always had with customer added obstructions is that a lot of times they are steel bolts and nails and they score the bore on the way out.

    I have never had grease diesel when doing this and I have never had a grease gun blow up. The one I have works at 15,000 PSI and has a peak burst pressure of 20,000 PSI This is actually the first time I have heard of grease dieseling. I suppose if you found a way to atomize it with a rich oxygen source it probably would. I anyone figures out how to carbourate grease they better call Cummins because the technology is probably worth something to some one.

    ADD NOTE: I always tell customers that all bets are off if they have filled the barrel with wood, nails, welding rods, cleaning rods and wire. Odds are the barrel is already destroyed before you start.
    Last edited by speerchucker30x3; 07-16-2012 at 03:11 PM.

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    I have never heard of this happening before, what causes the bullet to get stuck in the first place?

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    squib charge, not enough poweder to push it completely out of barrel is most common root cause

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    Wow Chucker you da man, I guess I have been lucky never had a hang fire like that before usally just a little pop from the primer and then empty the wepon and gently tap it out with a brass rod. Mind you his only happens to my .22.
    What causes such a situation as the one here an incomplete powder load?

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    Quote Originally Posted by speerchucker30x3 View Post
    I'm not to sure what you mean by a barbed fitting ken. .
    Like this.
    hose-barb.jpg
    Make the grease block with pipe threads and use/abuse fittings as needed and replace as required.

    I am probably overthinking it and going to get fired, But thats OK I need the rest of the day off anyhow.

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    Don't sweat it Ken, Upchucker has fired me many times. Not trying to oversimplify things but I have used a cleaning rod (tipton) and the brass fitting thingy you screw on the end for stuck cases and have removed a few stuck bullets this way. True it is slow but if it isn't a tight bore may be worth trying first. I usually douse it in Kroil first. And never I mean never and never drive a wood dowel in there. More schtuff I have to get out to get at the problem. Reminds me of when a stuck case happens at the range and evryone scrambles for a hammer to beat on the bolt handle. I see a $100 bill. I usually try to stop them and use the above method. NO case ever too stuck for it to work. Patience pays

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    Quote Originally Posted by kendog View Post
    Like this.
    hose-barb.jpg
    Make the grease block with pipe threads and use/abuse fittings as needed and replace as required.

    I am probably overthinking it and going to get fired, But thats OK I need the rest of the day off anyhow.
    Ah a hose coupler thingy.

    I wouldn't worry to much, I unfired keydiverfla. he he he I'm kind of a pussy. They could work if you could find small enough ones and if they would hold the pressure. I know the grease gun operates at 15,000 in normal use and will put out a burst of 20,000 PSI if I jump on the handle. They don't recommend that but I don't follow orders well or play well with others. When I use the tailstock and the piston I am reasonably certain that the pressure of the grease in the barrel raises to some where between 30,000 and 40,000 PSI and possibly higher. I can't measure it of course but common sense sort of dictates it. The hole I push the grease through is the same diameter as that in the zerk nose, around .050 inch. That gives the brass plug enough wall thickness to hold the pressure. I taper the plug about 2 degree using the compound. If I make the hole to large the nose of the plug can, and have failed. You need to get at least enough pressure from the grease gun to drive the air between the bullet and barrel to fill the barrel with grease. A 6,000 PSI grease gun won't do it. Hence the need of high pressure grease guns. After that you hope the grease gun has enough pressure to break the bullet free and baring that you use the piston. I put the zerk fitting about 4 inch's back on the brass body and cut the nose back every other time I use it so I get about 4 to 8 years out of one unit at 1 or 2 stuck bullets per year.

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    WHEW, redeemed

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    Quote Originally Posted by keydiverfla View Post
    Don't sweat it Ken, Upchucker has fired me many times. Not trying to oversimplify things but I have used a cleaning rod (tipton) and the brass fitting thingy you screw on the end for stuck cases and have removed a few stuck bullets this way. True it is slow but if it isn't a tight bore may be worth trying first. I usually douse it in Kroil first. And never I mean never and never drive a wood dowel in there. More schtuff I have to get out to get at the problem. Reminds me of when a stuck case happens at the range and evryone scrambles for a hammer to beat on the bolt handle. I see a $100 bill. I usually try to stop them and use the above method. NO case ever too stuck for it to work. Patience pays
    I have a bunch of bore riding driving rods of O1 for thumping them out. Works real good with cast bullets. When a jacketed bullet doesnt want to move, no amount of beating on that rod will get it to move. The one I have to do now ain't movin'. Its either drill it out (with proper bushings, drill extensions, etc) or now the greaser method.
    It looks like too much fun to not give it a try.

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    If you want a couple dry runs grab an old barrel out of the scrap bucket and drive a bullet 4 or so inches into it and then push em through a few times to work the bugs out of your system. Way back in the day I did an experiment to see if I could use more than one piston in a barrel at once. I'm pretty c h i k i n with new things. If memory serves I drove one bullet and 3 pistons through at once all 4 inches apart. The first one I did was for real though. A gun plumber friend of mine explained it to me and I went out and had at it. Back then I filled the barrels with grease with a huge syringe and tom cat catheters that I bought from a vet supply. Run the catheter down to the bullet base and start injecting grease. As the barrel fills the catheter backs out leaving the barrel full. Grease gun is 100 times faster and often push's the bullet out without pistons.

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    Well speerchucker, make that another "how-to" to add to my growing library of tips and tricks. Gonna have to start a "Speerchucker's Tips and tricks" folder ;-) LOL

    Thanks again for great info!!!


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