Tuesday, July 24, 2007

I've gotta throw a flag on this one...

Over at Hotair.com in a piece debunking the latest "Scott Thomas" crap from Iraq, I read the following blurb in response to the claim of finding a 9mm shell casing "with a square back" and knowing it came from a Glock:
I know for sure that the round fired by the Glock 17 (their standard 9mm service pistol) fires the same round as the 9mm Beretta, the M9 (known in the civilian world as the 92… I know quite a bit about guns, and I have NEVER heard of a 9mm round with a “square back”. In fact, I’ve never heard of ANY centerfire cartridge with a squared-off rim. A square rim would screw up how the round would sit in the magazine, and how it would feed into the chamber. The only “square” “cartridges” I’ve ever heard of came with caseless rounds, and weapons using caseless ammunition is so complex that it has yet to be fielded in any form.
Now, when I read that, I knew immediately what the writer meant. On the back of the shell casing is the primer. When it strikes the primer, the firing pin leaves a mark. Glocks use a striker with a rectangular (or "square") cross-section, unlike pretty much every other pistol on the planet, which all use a round firing pin.

I could walk onto a commercial firing range littered knee-deep in spent 9mm shell casings, pick one up, and immediately tell if it was fired from a Glock by the rectangular firing pin imprint on the primer (or "square back" in non-technicalese).

Let's be careful to stick to debunking the factoids we're sure of, okay?


UPDATE:

I'm no Oleg Volk, and I apologize for the crappy picture quality, but on the left is a round of .357SIG brass from a Glock 33, and on the right is a .40S&W shell casing from a Beretta 96. Note the squarish outline to the primer strike on the left-hand shell casing as opposed to the round dimple on the right.

9 comments:

andy said...

Besides the obvious that you pointed out,uhmmm Glocks are everywhere, not just with the IP. Contractors and joe's that aren't issued sidearms...The first couple years there were a lot of BHPs as well, but most of them have gone stateside:-)
Who really cares about what the NR jagoff has to say anyway?

Dr. StrangeGun said...

The beretta's wiping it's primer...

B&N said...

Nice photo, Tam.

Good focal plane definition, framing and plenty of subject that was pertinent to your argument.

Tam said...

"The beretta's wiping it's primer..."

So's the 33; not at all uncommon in either gun, actually.

Sigivald said...

On the other hand, "a square back" is the least useful possible way to describe "a relatively square firing pin indentation".

Tam said...

Indicating to me that the person making it knew that Glocks did "something square" to "bullets" from watching CSI: Miami, but otherwise knew dick-all about guns.

Gewehr98 said...

S&W Sigmas will do that, too. Just so you know...

triticale said...

According to the old thriller "Midnight Plus One", the Sten also left a square indent in the primer.

Diamondback said...

I'm curious to know if any Russian or Chinese sidearms have "squared" firing pins? I remember that not long ago Glock sold a bunch of sidearms to Iranian "police" that ended up in Iraq in insurgent's hands. From what I've seen in pics from Iraq, there are quite a lot of various firearms from around the world showing up at one time or another in Iraq.