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Old 08-03-2015, 01:31 PM   #1
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Polymer cased ammunition

It appears these folks tested a batch of Polymer cased ammunition, with plastic instead of metal forming the casing. It didn't do too well in the two rifles that were used in the test, to put things mildly.

PCP Polymer Cased Ammo Warning / Review Update - The Firearm Blog

It does raise an interesting possibility, that in the future ammunition could be made this way and it could become more common. Reloadability would definitely be an issue.

With the questions in ammunition supply chains about calibers and demand, I could see 3D printing as another future step, just enter what you need into the case-making machine. For now, though, it looks like this present form has a few bugs to work out. I won't be loading any until I see better results in field tests, personally.

What do you know, Dean S. might find the review interesting. He's always been interested in documenting and warning folks of things that can make a firearm go KaBoom.
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Old 08-04-2015, 11:55 AM   #2
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Check this out. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dardick_tround. Somewhere around here, I have a couple of those old .38 caliber "trounds".
My engineering experience tells me that there is not a polymer compound that will handle the pressures in modern rifle cartridges.
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Old 08-05-2015, 12:43 AM   #3
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Wasn't DARPA working a telescoping 5.56 composit case?
Much auto fire not much weight.
Geoff
Who is not a fan of auto fire, but WWII is a long way in the past.
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Old 08-05-2015, 06:34 AM   #4
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Polycase ammo was the June/July cover story in Guns & Ammo. I'll be darned if I can find the issue online (even though I'm a subscriber), but the gist of the article was that the polymer projectiles show promise, the cases not so much.

Here's a blurb from Ammoland about the issue:

PolyCase Ammunition Featured on the Cover of Guns & Ammo Magazine

And here's an article about Polycase's new (brass-cased) ammo offerings:

PolyCase Ammunition Introduces New Inceptor Ammo - Guns & Ammo
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Old 08-05-2015, 10:12 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Skeptic49 View Post
Wasn't DARPA working a telescoping 5.56 composit case?
Much auto fire not much weight.
Geoff
Who is not a fan of auto fire, but WWII is a long way in the past.
I remember the military looking into caseless ammo, but I think that died around 1990.

As far as polymer or composite ammo Geoff, I have just been out of the loop too long.

Personally, I don't doubt that they will, at some time in the future, come up with a suitable "formula" for a polymer(s) that will work consistently and across the caliber range. But the cost? The military might bite and spend our money on them, but I don't see the general shooting community going that way unless there is an advantage relative to the price point.
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Old 08-05-2015, 10:25 AM   #6
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Wasn't there a polymer cased .223 & .38 special made back in the '90's, Amtech or American Technology or something like that.
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Old 08-05-2015, 01:21 PM   #7
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Yes there were. The rifle calibers had plastic bullets for training but I don't think there were any full power jacketed bullet loads.

When you look at pressures of 30K or higher psi the seal between the plastic case body and brass or aluminum rim has to be perfect.

CCI did make some 5.56 with aluminum cases (like Blazer) that had a significant weight saving over ball for shipping and combat load out but I'm not sure if it ever went far in actual production.
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Old 08-05-2015, 02:21 PM   #8
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I would think the next revolution wouldn't be polymer cases, but no cases. The caseless cartridge idea has been kicked around before, and it sounds like a winner to me. Stick a bullet on the end of a formed cylinder of propellant, ignite it electronically, and away she goes.

An added advantage would be that with electronic ignition there needn't be any mechanical linkages, like sears and connectors, in the trigger mechanism. The trigger becomes simply a switch, and you can manufacture a switch to have any pull characteristics you like.
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Old 08-05-2015, 04:48 PM   #9
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The M41A Pulse Rifle is a pulse-action, air-cooled, selective fire assault rifle chambered for 1024mm Caseless ammunition manufactured by Armat Battlefield Systems.[1] It was mainly employed by the United States Colonial Marine Corps and the United States Army as their primary infantry weapon during the late 22nd century.[1] Through its use with the USCM, it saw regular use in various engagements with the Xenomorph and Yautja species.

I think of this every time someone mentions caseless ammo...
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Old 08-05-2015, 06:36 PM   #10
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The M41A Pulse Rifle is a pulse-action, air-cooled, selective fire assault rifle chambered for 1024mm Caseless ammunition manufactured by Armat Battlefield Systems.[1] It was mainly employed by the United States Colonial Marine Corps and the United States Army as their primary infantry weapon during the late 22nd century.[1] Through its use with the USCM, it saw regular use in various engagements with the Xenomorph and Yautja species.

I think of this every time someone mentions caseless ammo...
Bah, nothing more than a tarted-up TommyGun! ........
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Old 08-05-2015, 07:37 PM   #11
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I actually got to shoot one of the Voere caseless rilfes in 5.56. Very interesting but getting a good seal on the chamber is a key.

It worked but it really did not have an advantage over standard ammo.
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Old 08-06-2015, 02:18 AM   #12
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I remember GECO producing a gallery round in 7.62 It was molded plastic and primer powered for subcaliber indoor ranges. Manual operation of the G3 of course.

Geoff
Who digs into the database.
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Old 08-06-2015, 05:22 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by CaptainGyro View Post
Polycase ammo was the June/July cover story in Guns & Ammo. I'll be darned if I can find the issue online (even though I'm a subscriber), but the gist of the article was that the polymer projectiles show promise, the cases not so much.

Here's a blurb from Ammoland about the issue:

PolyCase Ammunition Featured on the Cover of Guns & Ammo Magazine

And here's an article about Polycase's new (brass-cased) ammo offerings:

PolyCase Ammunition Introduces New Inceptor Ammo - Guns & Ammo
Polymer projectiles could be very interesting. Polymer tips have already been used in stuff LeverEvolution rounds, for spritzer bullets in tubular mags, and for stuff like the Pow-R-Ball load to improve hollowpoint feeding. (Also, EFMJ, as I recall.)

Some years ago I recall hearing about lathe-turned pieces of nylon rod as some kind of custom revolver bullet.
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Old 08-06-2015, 06:17 AM   #14
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How long has Nosler been making Ballistic Tip ammo?
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Old 08-06-2015, 07:44 AM   #15
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15-20 yr.
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Old 08-06-2015, 08:52 AM   #16
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It worked but it really did not have an advantage over standard ammo.
Well...you could adjust your charge weight with your cee-gar cutter.

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Old 08-06-2015, 09:26 AM   #17
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Improvise. Adapt. Overcome.

I like the way you think, Mike. No don't wanna be standing next to you when you try out your method, but I like the way you think.
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Old 08-06-2015, 09:33 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by Charlie Petty View Post
Yes there were. The rifle calibers had plastic bullets for training but I don't think there were any full power jacketed bullet loads.

When you look at pressures of 30K or higher psi the seal between the plastic case body and brass or aluminum rim has to be perfect.

CCI did make some 5.56 with aluminum cases (like Blazer) that had a significant weight saving over ball for shipping and combat load out but I'm not sure if it ever went far in actual production.
My recollection was copper bullets, but I really don't know if they were full power. I used to have one of the .38 Specials in my collection and it had a truncated cone FMJ, and I may still have a .223 in my collection.

IIRC the idea was the company was trying to provide lower power, low cost practice ammunition to the US Military but it never came about. I'll have to look through my ammo collection, I may have one of the .223 rounds in there somewhere.
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Old 08-06-2015, 02:40 PM   #19
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Shooo-nuff, I had one in my collection


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Old 08-07-2015, 02:00 AM   #20
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I remember when an Amtech rep came to my local gun store/range to make a deal for their .38 Special range ammunition. He also left a display with inert rounds of their "future" offerings running all the way up to .50 BMG.
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