Warning

 

Close

Confirm Action

Are you sure you wish to do this?

Confirm Cancel
BCM
Member Login

Posted: 12/8/2020 5:08:52 PM EST
Has anyone ever witnessed a steel core round actually starting a fire in a range type setting?  I have fired and seen fired an astronomical number of rounds of ammunition that is steel core or mild steel jacketed and have never seen or heard of a verified instance of said round starting a fire.  I'm not talking about tracer, incendiary, armor piercing, etc.  Just plain jane steel core or mild steel jacketed ammo.  While I would say it's possible to hit a rock or part of a target stand and cause a spark that ignites dry grass or something but I would say the chances of that actually happening are incredibly low.  So the question is why do so many outdoor ranges ban ammo that is not armor piercing but rather just has a mild steel core or jacket?  I ask because I just became aware of a fantastic outdoor range in the DFW Texas area that has ranges out to 2000 yards yet they do not allow ANY steel core or steel jacket ammo.  This is unfortunate and because of this I can't really use this facility.  Maybe they are worried about steel target plates but I would think that would be ok past a certain yardage.  I just don't get it.  Public ranges are mostly useless in Texas.
Link Posted: 12/8/2020 5:25:25 PM EST
No fire started, but shooting wolf at night at steel is kinda cool.
Small shower of sparks from each impact.
Link Posted: 12/8/2020 5:39:26 PM EST
Probably insurance BS.
Link Posted: 12/8/2020 6:22:24 PM EST
One of two things, or both.

One, they don't want their equipment getting chewed up by steel bullets.

Two, they don't want to pick up steel cases for free. They want to sell brass cases (M855 is brass cased of course most others are not).

Link Posted: 12/8/2020 6:57:28 PM EST
I did!

Was shooting my Mosin Nagant with Czech LPS Steel core ammo.

Was attempting to zero the rifle and when I looked through the spotting scope my target was on fire!

The target stand consisted of large truck tires stacked like Oreos and filled with dirt and rocks.  

What happened is cardboard and paper from the targets had collected in the tires and finally one of my steel cored rounds hit a rock and sparked igniting the fine tinder resulting in the fire.

Range owner came out of the house after I called him and we got a 5 gallon bucket of water and put the fire out but the top 2 tires had to be replaced.
Link Posted: 12/8/2020 7:11:45 PM EST
[Last Edit: 12/8/2020 7:12:23 PM EST by buck19delta]
Yes.. Iv seen them start many grass / bush fires in the military. Not tracer either, straight xm193 / xm855.
Link Posted: 12/8/2020 7:34:39 PM EST
Yes, E. WA is a desert.
Range shooting with my Son one day resulted in a small but very scary fire, (wind/houses). I was very upset and thought that my Son had stupidly shot tracers but when he showed me his rounds they were in fact green tip.
Link Posted: 12/8/2020 7:48:57 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By buck19delta:
Yes.. Iv seen them start many grass / bush fires in the military. Not tracer either, straight xm193 / xm855.
View Quote

Same here. In places like Hood and Bliss, we aren’t allowed to use tracers during the dry seasons, but we still manage to start range fires, especially with machine guns. Not as frequently, but it happens. As others said though, I don’t think that’s the primary reason why some ranges ban it.
Link Posted: 12/8/2020 8:47:31 PM EST
Yup, they can and do start fires. Seen and filmed it many times.

Think of it this way, the bigger the fragments after impact, the more likely they will start fires if there is tinder where those fragments stop.

You wouldn't think it, but copper solids are even worse than lead or steel core.

Link Posted: 12/8/2020 9:25:31 PM EST
[Last Edit: 12/8/2020 9:27:52 PM EST by 1Devildog]
Yes. SoCal public shooting areas up in the mountains back in the early 90's were set on fire a number of times. They ended up posting signs banning steel cored or jacketed ammunition.
Link Posted: 12/9/2020 2:28:01 AM EST
A main reason why steel and penetrator ammo is banned has to do with the wear and tear on range equipment.  Those bullets chew up steel targets, bullet traps, backdrops, etc.  A lot of ranges ban steel or bi-metal bullets, or anything with penetrator or armor piercing capability.  The training group I work with bans that ammo on any course where we use steel targets, and we actually have magnets that we’ve used to check bullets of suspect ammo.  We’ve actually had someone take a chunk off a 3/8” AR550 steel target with green tip.  

That said, as others have pointed out I’ve also seen M855 start grass fires.
Link Posted: 12/9/2020 9:22:16 PM EST
[Last Edit: 12/9/2020 9:24:03 PM EST by ChrisM516]
I have seen it on both indoor and outdoor ranges.  The indoor range had not been cleaned properly and some unseen spark lit a small pile of cardboard/dust on fire.  It burned itself out quickly.  I have "seen" "invisible fires" on outdoor ranges where you can't see the flames but the bushes are quickly burning.  Weirdest thing and bad news if you aren't paying attention.  Seen visible ones too of course.  It happens.
Link Posted: 12/20/2020 8:26:37 PM EST
In this area right now I'd be really careful shooting steel with bi metal bullets. Everything is dry and a few sparks could set up a disaster. However the bi metal, even hollow points, seem to chew up the steel targets more than regular ammo. I usually shoot them at cardboard or paper targets. We don't have any rocks on our range so that's not a problem.
Link Posted: 12/20/2020 8:31:55 PM EST
Link Posted: 12/21/2020 9:13:38 PM EST
I have used green tip ammo for an outdoor AR training class a few years back. The range we trained was totally clear to at least 100 yards and we were shooting at paper targets with earthen berms at the forward end of the range. I don't own that much green tip and only have few magazines loaded with it for SHTF situations only. It it is great for training if I can use green tip so I can save my M193 rounds.


Link Posted: 12/22/2020 10:03:03 AM EST
They ricochet badly too. I've seen two incidents where soldiers were shot by bullets hitting metal and deflecting through guys. I'm not talking spall either.

In 2003, I was on the range when someone used T-stakes as target stands to add close in targets. A green-tip round rode the U shape and went through a guys hand.

In 2005, I was also on a KD range when a green-tip hit a piece of steel beam upright and then zipped through 3 soldiers working the pit. One guy had it go through his neck and miss his carotid by mm.
Link Posted: 12/22/2020 7:42:24 PM EST
Older indoor range, steel ammo sparked against something downrange and ignited unburned powder residue. Was interesting.
Link Posted: 12/24/2020 12:01:21 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By SSGJAYP_B4:

In 2005, I was also on a KD range when a green-tip hit a piece of steel beam upright and then zipped through 3 soldiers working the pit. One guy had it go through his neck and miss his carotid by mm.
View Quote



Holly crap, was that at EAFR in Jericho? I've shot up there quite a lot as a civilian and around that time frame they had a requirement for everyone to have a helmet.

B

Link Posted: 12/24/2020 12:48:24 PM EST
[Last Edit: 12/24/2020 12:50:23 PM EST by ASUsax]
The outdoor range near here has had to shut down on a few occasions to put out a fire.

The thing is, it's a Colossal PITA, because the permanent steel targets are up farther on the hillside and are not protected from the other ranges. (Backstop is a mountain)

So if you start a fire on the range, you have to shut it down, then go to all the other ranges and shut all them down, then go put out the fire, which by that point has likely spread.

M855 is banned all the time because of the steel core; that damages the targets over time.

Steel jacket is only banned during the summer. Once we get a good rain the ban goes away.

ETA: Private club on public land; one range open to the public for cash. I'm not currently a member but have been in the past (and likely will be in the future).
Link Posted: 1/15/2021 2:27:34 PM EST
Unlikely, I live in Eastern Washington very dry part of the state in 40 years the only fire I’ve seen started by shooting was with tracers.

Now I have seen dumb shits park their hot cars on tall dry grass.
Link Posted: 1/15/2021 3:33:14 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Happy2shoot:
One of two things, or both.

One, they don't want their equipment getting chewed up by steel bullets.

Two, they don't want to pick up steel cases for free. They want to sell brass cases (M855 is brass cased of course most others are not).

View Quote


OP literally said nothing about steel cases.
Link Posted: 1/21/2021 5:21:13 PM EST
[Last Edit: 1/21/2021 5:22:37 PM EST by licoricenoose]
He’s insinuating that most bi-metal jacketed bullets are loaded in steel cased ammo. Most people that shoot steel cased ammo don’t pick up their casings and the range can’t make any money selling them off like they can brass. Sounds pretty straight forward to me.
Link Posted: 1/21/2021 6:39:42 PM EST
I've been shooting at an outdoor range north of Houston since 1990 that has always allowed m855 and bi metal bullets. They've never had issues with fires starting
Link Posted: 1/21/2021 7:31:25 PM EST
2 years ago I was alone at the club range and heard AK fire near the locked gate. I assumed some non-members came out knowing there was a range but didn't expect to find a locked gate (members have combo).

About 10 minutes later I saw smoke. I went to the gate and there was a grass fire spreading fast. Farmer next door had already called FD. They arrived quickly.

Cause of fire was determined to be steel ammo that sparked on rocks. Russian 7.62 steel cases were found on the scene.
Link Posted: 1/21/2021 7:34:47 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By hotbiggun42:
Unlikely, I live in Eastern Washington very dry part of the state in 40 years the only fire I’ve seen started by shooting was with tracers.

Now I have seen dumb shits park their hot cars on tall dry grass.
View Quote


LOL
There were 3 fires at ranges in E WA just last year that were started by shooting.
Link Posted: 1/31/2021 12:31:48 PM EST
Any high velocity jacketed ammo is capable of creating a spark if it hits a hard surface and the spark can cause a fire if the conditions  are dry enough. Its simply a case of extreme friction in a short amount of time particularly if the bullet strikes a rock. The Forest Service closes vast areas of my state when conditions are dry and for years I thought this was nonsense. I discovered their reasoning was sound on a dark night when I fired some soft point .308 and FMJ lead core 7.62 NATO at the ground 30 yards away and saw that each time the bullet hit I could see an impact flash. The FMJ flash was larger but I grudgingly admitted that the Forest Service had been correct all along. The range I used to shoot at went bat sh!t crazy when conditions were dry enforcing a steel core ammo ban. Instead of clearing away a relatively small amount of dry brush to prevent fires they entrusted a gaggle of enthusiastic authoritarian Barney Fife range officers to enforce their ban. It quickly got to the point the RSO’s were searching shooters ranges boxes with a magnet snooping for banned ammo.
Link Posted: 2/12/2021 10:55:05 PM EST
Yes.

Shoot a bunch of bimetal 7.62X39 using the Kansas Flint Hills as your backstop and you'll see sparks.
Link Posted: 2/12/2021 11:31:46 PM EST
I live in the desert and our BLMs are littered with steel casings.

Don't see any evidence of this extremely dry area being charred from all the fires steel supposedly starts.
Top Top