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9/19/2017 7:27:10 PM
Posted: 2/17/2006 7:05:24 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/17/2006 7:05:46 PM EDT by OBird]
I'm going to try and attend a gas-operated semi-auto rifle competition tomorrow with my M1A. IIRC, the projected high for tomorrow is ten degrees below zero, and that's without the wind chill. Now, I doubt that will be too cold to do anything, but it started me thinking....can super extreme cold ever make shooting dangerous due to the temperature's effect on metallurgy? For instance, could it ever get so cold that the bore diameter starts shrinking, or cast metal parts start fracturing, etc. ?

What say you?
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 7:06:32 PM EDT
Ask a korean war vet or ww2 vet. I'm sure they will say it's ok.
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 7:11:02 PM EDT
Won't hurt a thing but your fingers and rifle dope if your shooting any distance.
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 7:12:58 PM EDT
Get your pansey ass out there and shoot! When I was a door gunner on the Space Shuttle I was subjected to some extreme cold conditions not to mention the -0- oxygen atmosphere but did you hear me whining? No! My select fire beltfed Garand performed flawlessly from liftoff to touchdown. I had so many sattelite kill patches on my shooting vest that I looked like a.... looked like a..... looked like a man with a bunch of patches on my vest, that's what I looked like.
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 7:14:48 PM EDT
I have put 400 rounds through mine at 10 degrees without any problems.


If you can stand the cold, don't worry about your gun.
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 7:25:24 PM EDT

Originally Posted By OBird:
...can super extreme cold ever make shooting dangerous due to the temperature's effect on metallurgy? For instance, could it ever get so cold that the bore diameter starts shrinking, or cast metal parts start fracturing, etc. ?



The bore expands and shrinks with the ambient temperature, but so do the cartridges. The difference probably isn't so large that it would cause problems.
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 7:27:24 PM EDT
Nothing to worry about...

Link Posted: 2/17/2006 7:30:58 PM EDT
No problem with shooting in the extreme temperature but remember the effect of temperature change ie. condensation and potential freezing. Taking a warm rifle inside, allowing condensation to develop and returning outside could cause freezing problems. Jusy a heads up.
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 7:41:47 PM EDT

Originally Posted By MisterC:
No problem with shooting in the extreme temperature but remember the effect of temperature change ie. condensation and potential freezing. Taking a warm rifle inside, allowing condensation to develop and returning outside could cause freezing problems. Jusy a heads up.



Good point.

I love shooting in cold weather because it is harder to overheat the barrel and it cools down faster.

Although the spent shells fall on ice/snow, melt it a little and then quickly freeze into it. Not easy to get out.
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 7:50:33 PM EDT
Make sure it's real clean and LIGHT on the lube and in the right spots. Don't expect the same accuracy you would in warmer temps unless you worked your load up to match the temps.
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 8:01:33 PM EDT

Originally Posted By MrClean4Hire:
Ask a korean war vet or ww2 vet. I'm sure they will say it's ok.



This event is actually in memory of Korean War vets. It's called "the Frozen Chosin" match in honor of the Chosin Reservoir. It's purposely held in Februrary so that we freeze ourselves for an hour just to get an incredibly small taste of what those guys actually had to go through.


Originally Posted By Ranxerox911:
The bore expands and shrinks with the ambient temperature, but so do the cartridges. The difference probably isn't so large that it would cause problems.



Good point, didn't even consider that.



Originally Posted By MisterC:
No problem with shooting in the extreme temperature but remember the effect of temperature change ie. condensation and potential freezing. Taking a warm rifle inside, allowing condensation to develop and returning outside could cause freezing problems. Jusy a heads up.



Yup, living here I've had to deal with that plenty.



Originally Posted By C-4:
Although the spent shells fall on ice/snow, melt it a little and then quickly freeze into it. Not easy to get out.



I hate that, especially when you have to pick up the brass and you can't get the buggers with your gloves on...
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 9:12:10 PM EDT
Steel will become sufficiently brittle to fracture at very cold temperatures, but mild steel at -10F should be okay. A carbon steel that is heat treated to very high strength and has very little ductility at room temperature might break at -10F if you drop the gun.

Remove all of the grease, go light on the lube only where required, and press on.
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 9:16:56 PM EDT
I have seen a barrel that was banana peeled from having been fired at excessive cold temps. I doubt you will have problems but at some point it can be a factor.
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 10:04:13 PM EDT
I have shot in very, very cold weather. Your pressures will naturally drop, make sure your loads are strong enough to cycle your action. When its very cold leave the gun outside until you are finished for the day.
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 10:10:07 PM EDT

Originally Posted By OBird:

What say you?



I've shot in a few cold weather matches, you won't have much competition.


Link Posted: 2/17/2006 10:14:30 PM EDT
Now thats what I call a training opportunity!
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 10:18:16 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/17/2006 10:21:35 PM EDT by VT4meGunCtrlisAntiUS]
Remember the Frozen Chosin In the Freezing Season..

Anyway, I shoot my weapons in sub-freezing temps all the winter long.

--VT

ETA: shiity speelingk
Link Posted: 2/18/2006 4:06:42 AM EDT
Considering that there was a light infantry division, and now just a brigade stationed in Alaska that fired at those temps, plus the nations that are in cold areas, Russia, Finland, Switzerland, etc, I'd say it's a non-issue. Just please wear gloves, and don't stick your tongue to the cold barrel. Or if you do, post pics.
Link Posted: 2/18/2006 4:12:46 AM EDT
Underwater bump firing not advised.
Link Posted: 2/18/2006 4:18:26 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Pangea:
Get your pansey ass out there and shoot! When I was a door gunner on the Space Shuttle I was subjected to some extreme cold conditions not to mention the -0- oxygen atmosphere but did you hear me whining? No! My select fire beltfed Garand performed flawlessly from liftoff to touchdown. I had so many sattelite kill patches on my shooting vest that I looked like a.... looked like a..... looked like a man with a bunch of patches on my vest, that's what I looked like.



ahhh yes... the good olde days... I remember the bayonette course being a real bitch to pass, but you didn't see anyone pissing and moaning about it!

Link Posted: 2/18/2006 4:23:00 AM EDT
Didn't read all the replies so it may have been said but you do not want ANY lube on the gun in that cold of weather. Unless of course you have some made for cold weather operation .
Other than that ,you should be ok. Have fun and keep warm.
Link Posted: 2/18/2006 12:24:47 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/18/2006 12:25:06 PM EDT by OBird]
Well, I just got back. It was slightly warmer than expected, though I still couldn't feel my toes or fingers most of the time... . I did have two or three failures to feed with the first 10 rounds of American Eagle .308 (Springfield M1A), though the subsequent 40 rounds of Winchester white box worked just fine. One thing I did notice was that, for whatever reason, I usually had to give the charging handle a tap to get it forward, much like a Garand, but this never happens in "normal" temeratures.

AFAIK, I got second or third place out of about 20-30 shooters, so it wasn't all bad.


ETA: Thanks for all the replies.
Link Posted: 2/18/2006 12:31:11 PM EDT
If your worried about cold weather, get a Mosin.

Link Posted: 2/18/2006 12:35:53 PM EDT
Your gun should do fine. But there are special formulation lubes that are used for exteme cold weather. Some of the lubes and oils that are fine in normal temp extremes may freeze and seize your gun.

Link Posted: 2/18/2006 12:36:00 PM EDT

Link Posted: 2/18/2006 12:54:42 PM EDT
I have shot in -10 degrees up here without a problem.
Link Posted: 2/18/2006 12:59:29 PM EDT
SS is supposed to be bad news in very cold weather. Especially if it has ever been subjected to ammonia and chlorinated solvents.

Good CM steels are supposed to be fine.

Dave S
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