.17HMR Splitting Case Necks?



I just noticed my CZ .17HMR is splitting a few case necks but to be perfectly honest I never have paid that much attention to the cases since getting it many moons ago.

It's not shot 1000's and in reality it won't have shot even half that.

Do they do this anyway or has it developed a problem over time...I have no idea as I never noticed before.
 
I checked my stock of 500ish live when the problem was identified and found a couple of split necks- which were discarded.
Have bought since and found no splits in lives, not noticed splits in empties
 

Mick9abf

War Hero
Very common, just watch if one doesn’t sound right when it goes off as there seems to be inconsistency/shite quality control when it comes to .17hmr.

My mate had a brown trouser moment out lamping when he let fly at a rabbit and thought he has missed (engine running), reloaded and fired again into the previous bullet stuck in the barrel.

The next thing he was wondering what the feck had happened, bit of smoke in the cab and looked down to see a split in the stock and magazine following closer inspection a buggered bolt. Took it up to Callum Ferguson who condemned it and said it wasn’t the first. Was a CZ incidentally, so a good wee gun. He just used the old .22lr with hornets or whatever they’re called after that.

I got rid of mine years ago due to ammo cost and just started using .22lr again, don’t really miss the .17.
 
Yes that rings a bell...had a couple of odd sounding ones but so far nothing stuck in the barrel.

These are CCI I'm using currently, I never noticed spilt necks with Hornday but can't swear to it as I really didn't pay much attention to the cases.
 

HE117

LE
This is down to poor heat treatment/ bad material QC.

The manufacturers need reaming with the broad end of a bugle... this is one of the oldest known failure modes in drawn case manufacture!

It was first noted in deep drawn artillery cartridge cases in India in the days of the Raj, which developed neck cracks at certain times of the year. It became known as "Season Cracking". After long investigation, the fault was traced to residual tension in the work hardened mouths of brass cases. The cracking was started however by the ammonia fumes coming from the dung heaps at the back of the stables at certain times of year when the moisture levels in the air was high during the monsoon. The ammonia reacted with the zinc in the brass producing failure points which propagated into cracks. In the standard layout of 19th Cent barracks the stables were at the far end of the camp next to the magazines. It was solved by closer quality control of the brass used for making cases and heat treatment to anneal the mouth of the case, which both softened the metal and removed the locked in tension..

... so stop keeping your .17HMR in your bog!
 

Mick9abf

War Hero
Yes that rings a bell...had a couple of odd sounding ones but so far nothing stuck in the barrel.

These are CCI I'm using currently, I never noticed spilt necks with Hornday but can't swear to it as I really didn't pay much attention to the cases.
I seem to recall someone telling me that one location produced brass for two of the main manufacturers which was just branded/boxed different but can’t remember whether it was CCI/Hornady/Remington or what combo.

We are years down the line and the issue is well known and has not changed or been rectified........
 
Been going on for years , ammo suppliers are saying the new stock is okay and you`ll only have problems with old stock , I know of several cases where a bullet head has been stuck up the barrel and caused a mini explosion when a second round was put up behind it .
If you get a quieter that usual report when using a 17HMR check your barrel is clear otherwise you may be trying to pick your fingers up off the floor.
 
Another important thing to note with the 17HMR is clean the fcuking barrel , many dont and pay the price , patch out with a copper/powder solvent every 100 rounds or so , Butch`s Boreshine is my favourite.
 
For those who've had problems what brand were you using? I can't recall having a problem myself with Winchesters or CCI but I've heard bad things about Hornady. Which is odd because it's all supposed to come out of the same factory.
 
Slight drift
It's been 3 or 4 years since I used my hmr - change of landowner who thought it too noisy so I was instructed to use subsonic .22
Opened the cabinet yesterday and there it was, sat in the back looking lonely so we went for a session on some new land.
Checked the live rounds, no splits.
Target up at 75 yards, two rounds to check zero and they were touching right on the point of aim.
Off we went and after 3 hours 19 rabbits taken from 55 to 120 yard shots
Total of 25 shots fired and no splits in the empties
Noisy? yes.
Better than a .22 sub? Horses for courses
Splits? None - but 25 is hardly a representative sample
Will I try to use it again? Yes
 
I think I’ve used just about all the makes through my .17 Sako apart from S&B, and they have all split at some point or another
Didn't know S&B made HMR... but then I don't recall seeing any S&B on sale for years.
 
Took it up to Callum Ferguson who condemned it and said it wasn’t the first. Was a CZ incidentally, so a good wee gun.
He does decent work - the best barrels the wife and I ever had were Shilens that he fitted for us (although they needed rechambering as he'd done them as per benchrest, i.e slightly too tight for target work over longer matches).
 

Mick9abf

War Hero
He does decent work - the best barrels the wife and I ever had were Shilens that he fitted for us (although they needed rechambering as he'd done them as per benchrest, i.e slightly too tight for target work over longer matches).
I think he’s one of, if not the best in the country but his prices and waiting list reflect that. I take it he rectified them without drama?
 
I think he’s one of, if not the best in the country but his prices and waiting list reflect that. I take it he rectified them without drama?
I got HPS to do it, they were closer (and had a brand-new chamber reamer, and our coach was the gunsmith)... they shot OK, it was just that on a warm day I found the bolt getting stiffer and stiffer until by the end of the kneeling practice (about 100 shots in) I was having to hit it to get it open. Mind you, this was 23 years ago.

But once reamed, the results were stunning. 10 shot groups at 50m that IIRC averaged 14mm, edge to edge, when tested at the Eley factory. And the wife's light barrel was even better - 13mm average.
 

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