Sparks from rimfire rounds

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  • Sparks from rimfire rounds

    Good day all. I hope to eucalyptus trees that you and yours are all safe from the fires.

    Just wondering if anyone knows if there is sufficient spark from a 22 round to start a fire, in obviously very dry conditions, as we have now. As the bullets are lead, does that mean they don't spark? I don't recall ever seeing any sparks from metal or rock contact.
    As with alll things in life, I suppose anything is possible, is this?

  • #2
    lead does not spark, not even a little bit, the main danger would be from the muzzle flash.
    But the muzzle flash could only start a fire if you were shooting through some long dry grass as cover.
    Muzzle flash isn't really a danger as all the powder should be burnt up before the bullet exits the barrel.
    IIRC all powder is burnt up in the first 16" of barrel (for .22LR) so if your barrel is longer than this you should be sweet.

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    • #3
      Projectiles in general don't spark at all. All that blowing up cars, igniting fuel etc is just Hollywood.
      If you are using Incendiary rounds/Tracer rounds/Armour piercing rounds then it might be a different story
      “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil, is for good men to do nothing” - Edmund Burke

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      • Varminator
        Varminator commented
        Editing a comment
        Originally posted by Morgo" post=18236
        Projectiles in general don't spark at all. All that blowing up cars, igniting fuel etc is just Hollywood.
        If you are using Incendiary rounds/Tracer rounds/Armour piercing rounds then it might be a different story
        Can't say I'd be worried about using any hunting/target rifle in the bush when its dry, using an m60 and tracers - well that's another matter altogether! managed to set the range alight one day using tracers!

    • #4
      I have had .22 CF rounds make quite a spark when shot at large granite rocks (not intentional) from 200m. No idea about .22 RF rounds.

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      • #5
        As far as I could determine, there are no restrictions on the use of firearms during a total fire ban in NSW or Vic.

        Of course, shooters are still required to exercise due care and be aware of the possibility of muzzle flash ignition.

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        • Guest's Avatar
          Guest commented
          Editing a comment
          My grandfather would always err on the side of caution and not shoot into long grass/scrub on stinking hot, blowy days.

          He claimed it was possible to cause ignition from friction as the projectile swiped dry grass/leaf matter etc

          Dunno if there is any truth to it, but has made me wary on dodgy days.

      • #6
        In many years of hunting and being in the Army I have fired thousands of rounds through all kinds of bush and grass you name it and never seen any fire start . The exceptions are , tracer rounds , patches from muzzle loaders and direct muzzle blast onto very dry grass but in many cases the blast stops it from igniting .
        Starting a chain saw on dry grass or failing to clear grass from under the 4x4 is far more likely to start a fire than a modern gun .
        However it is still wise to take care in very dry thick grass conditions . Find a clear spot to shoot from .

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        • #7
          I would not be very concerned with a 22lr.


          In saying that I have started a small grass fire shooting prone with a 300 win mag,
          It was a fire that was able to be stomped out in a few seconds but never the less still a danger.

          JH

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          • #8
            hmmm if only there were some kind of device that could SUPPRESS muzzle flash

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            • Stan 66
              Move commented
              Editing a comment
              Originally posted by overkill" post=18814
              hmmm if only there were some kind of device that could SUPPRESS muzzle flash

              No way Jose. These kinds of things also induce law abiding citizens to become mafia hitmen. Just look at NZ - thousands of hitmen everywhere causing mayhem.

              Thank God we don't allow such silliness and criminality here.

          • #9
            Sparks are caused by the metal burning (high temperatures from friction/impact) It is the carbon content of the steel/iron that actually burns. So a lead projectile zinging through grass, or even off rocks, is not going to be a problem unless the rock has a high iron content. Of course, any round striking metal (such as the aforementioned tank stand) could cause sparks, maybe even enough to start a fire in the right (wrong) conditions.
            Of course, lead projectiles are much softer than copper plated or FMJ's, and are much less likely to strike a spark of hard metal or rock. A FMJ off flint is much more likely to strike a spark. Could it start a fire? Freakishly improbable, but not impossible, given the millions of rounds sent downrange every year. As always, minimise the risks. Know what you are shooting at, know what your backstop is, and if you are worried about shooting in dry conditions, then use lead projectiles.
            You are more likely to win tattslotto than start a bushfire.

            Col

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            • #10
              I know a 'genius' that started a fire in the grass at a certain major airport by firing a Bird-frite round... into the ground.
              Praemonitus praemunitus

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