.17 hmr vs. .17 hornady mag QUESTION... - The HuntingPA.com Outdoor Community
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-05-2018, 07:46 AM Thread Starter
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.17 hmr vs. .17 hornady mag QUESTION...

Crazy story here. My brother-in-law was given a .17hmr Marlin stainless bull barrel. He was given some ammo along with it. He went shooting with a friend. The 1st shot he heard a strange noise. The 2nd shot was a misfire. The gun then wouldn't eject the shell casing. This happened about a year ago or longer. I have been bugging him to bring the gun to me so I can either fix it or take it to a gunsmith to be fixed for him.
He brought it to me the other day. I took a look into the chamber to make sure there wasn't a round in it and then put it away. When I pulled it out to check it out I noticed that the retractor is completely missing. Think OK no big deal. I attempted to look through the barrel and could see any daylight on the other end. Now things are getting me puzzled here. I ran a rod down the barrel to push out whatever was in there and a bullet and part of a casing comes out.
I called brother-in-law up and had him send me photos of all the ammo that was given to him. Turns out the ammo is .17 Hornady Magnums. Now I must admit I am not real familiar with the .17 cal. I have been looking at them lately because I want to get one soon and what I do know is it seems that there are quite a few different models out there. I am also assuming that these different models are ammo specific. In other words you shouldn't be shooting Hornady Magnums through a HMR.


1. Am I correct in saying that?


At this point instead of me putting a new extractor on myself I am thinking of taking it to a gunsmith for that so I can have the barrel inspected for damage. I don't think there is any damage but I would feel a lot better knowing that it was inspected inside the barrel.


Once this is all done I may have a few boxes of .17 Hornady Mag, ammo for sale.


Any input would be appreciated.

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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-05-2018, 08:16 AM
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HMR stands for Hornady Magnum Rimfire.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-05-2018, 08:30 AM Thread Starter
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Yeah Ok. I did a little more research this morning and I am now realizing that. The pics of the ammo weren't that good and all I saw was Hornady Magnum.
Now I am really wondering what went wrong here.
Thanks for straightening me out here.

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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-05-2018, 09:08 AM
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It sounds like what happened is the first shot may have been defective ammo, perhaps no powder charge. The bullet being propelled by primer charge might only go a short distance down the barrel. When the second round was chambered and fired it struck the obstruction in the barrel and was driven back into empty case in the chamber, breaking off the piece of casing you found with the slug in the barrel. This backward motion probably damaged the extractor too. When the bolt was opened the extractor probably fell out and your brother didn't notice. The bullet then probably traveled forward after hitting the empty case and lodged in the barrel. I'm assuming there was only one bullet found lodged in the barrel, the first bullet being pushed out by the bullet found in the barrel. Does he know if his first shot came out of the gun (did he see a bullet hole in his target). That info would go a long way in confirming or disproving this theory.

Your brother in law was lucky he was not injured. Evidently the gases in the chamber were able to escape through the action and the gun managed to hold together.

The very important take away here is always be sure you barrel is clear before a shooting session and if you ever hear anything out of the ordinary when shooting take a minute to check the bore for obstructions before firing another shot.

I would have the gun checked by a gunsmith before firing it again.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-05-2018, 09:13 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks Simoncool. That theory really makes sense to me. The gun is definitely going to a gunsmith for inspection. I certainly hope the gun is ok.
When I give this gun back to him I will definitely explain some things to him about shooting guns and safety. He is indeed very lucky. I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw that bullet come out of that barrel.
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-05-2018, 09:23 AM
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These sometimes have case splits, maybe the first case, came apart blew pressure back in the action and tore out the extractor, I am not sure about the second shot that you call a misfire, but if the case in the barrel is from the first shot he can be glad, the second shot did not go into an obstructed barrel. Not sure really what happened, by your description. Another possibility is the bullet when chambered, was pushed back into the case, when fired this raises pressure, and allows some gasses to escape around the bullet, not sending the bullet all the way down the barrel. Check your unfired shells for neck splits, and see if you can easily push the bullet farther down in the case, the case does not have to be split to have this problem. If you can push your bullet down in the case, then that is a good indication of your problem.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-05-2018, 09:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by simoncool View Post
It sounds like what happened is the first shot may have been defective ammo, perhaps no powder charge. The bullet being propelled by primer charge might only go a short distance down the barrel. When the second round was chambered and fired it struck the obstruction in the barrel and was driven back into empty case in the chamber, breaking off the piece of casing you found with the slug in the barrel. This backward motion probably damaged the extractor too. When the bolt was opened the extractor probably fell out and your brother didn't notice. The bullet then probably traveled forward after hitting the empty case and lodged in the barrel. I'm assuming there was only one bullet found lodged in the barrel, the first bullet being pushed out by the bullet found in the barrel. Does he know if his first shot came out of the gun (did he see a bullet hole in his target). That info would go a long way in confirming or disproving this theory.

Your brother in law was lucky he was not injured. Evidently the gases in the chamber were able to escape through the action and the gun managed to hold together.

The very important take away here is always be sure you barrel is clear before a shooting session and if you ever hear anything out of the ordinary when shooting take a minute to check the bore for obstructions before firing another shot.

I would have the gun checked by a gunsmith before firing it again.

that is exactly what happened, I can tell you from experience, I did it with a pistol, wasn't fun.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-05-2018, 10:07 AM Thread Starter
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Sorry for not knowing all of the story here. I am learning things as I go. I am also learning from this post so please bear with me and thanks for the input.


The latest is that one of the boxes of ammo in the picture he sent me is .17 HM2 ammo.

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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-05-2018, 10:28 AM
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Well that could change the whole story. If he fired an HM2 round in a rifle chambered for HMR, the HMR chamber is a bit larger and would not provide the needed case wall support resulting in case rupture. The result could be similar to what was outlined in my first post or the damage could have been caused by solely the effects of shooting the wrong ammo with barrel obstruction never playing a role.

Starting to get too many variables to know for sure.

Good luck and safe shooting.

Last edited by simoncool; 02-05-2018 at 10:35 AM.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-05-2018, 11:13 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks all for your help and sorry for posting without knowing all of the details.
This gun is definitely going to my gunsmith. Crossing my fingers hoping there isn't any serious damage.

"When seconds count…the police are only minutes away”.
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