Rounds in the last month

Here is an update on the total number of rounds I have reloaded:

223.LOG: 2027 rounds.
3006.LOG: 467 rounds.
300WIN.LOG: 1351 rounds.
40SW.LOG: 37670 rounds.
45.log: 0 rounds.
9MM.LOG: 19709 rounds.
Total: 61224 rounds.

This is a delta of 1896 rounds since last month. This is composed of 830 rounds of 40 S&W and 1066 rounds of 9mm.

I still haven’t found any of my favorite pistol powders available. But I found a pound of Longshot on my shelf and another local source had some so I bought a pound from them as well.. I’m working up a load for 40 S&W with it. Even 0.2 grains less than the suggested starting load gives higher velocities than what I really want. I’m getting 1047 fps with Montana Gold 180 grain JHP for a Power Factor of 188 when I really want a PF on the order of 175. I may reduce the seating depth and see if that helps. I was able to order eight pounds of ETR7 which I’m hoping works out okay. If so then that should keep me in business for quite a while.

Inverse Markley’s Law

Via email from Toastrider we have this:

LittlePistol

For some reason I haven’t been able to find any commercially available ammo. It must be that a high demand for it hoovered the shelves like a lot of the other ammo. This would appear to be consistent with the abundance of large rifle ammo, moderate availability of .223 ammo, and scarcity of .22 ammo. Thus I claim we have proof that if the size of a gun is inversely related to penis size then the caliber of the gun owning man in this country is much larger than average.

Alien Gear IWB holster

I received a IWB holster from Alien Gear for review. I have the Ruger P89 Cloak Tuck 2.0 but they have different versions of holsters for a very wide selection of guns. I count 441 different pistols and 14 different revolvers.

I can’t ever recall giving unqualified praise for a product I have been asked to review. While I do have a minor quibble about the instructions I really like the product. As they claim on their web site, “You are not just going to like your new Alien Gear Holster – you’re going to love it. Guaranteed.”

My minor quibble with the instructions is with how they tell you to put the holster on:

First put on your pants and sturdy belt. Leave your pants unbuttoned and unzipped. Insert the holster into your pants in the front just to the right of the zipper. Then, slide the holster around to where you will be wearing it.

This didn’t work for me. The padding gripped the t-shirt I was wearing and slid it around with the holster. If I had not been wearing a shirt then it would have worked but why do this at all? Perhaps there is a good reason but I didn’t see it. I just rotated it into the position I wanted it and then slid it straight down sort of like I was tucking in a shirt.

The holster is very comfortable to wear. It has good retention for a holster without a locking mechanism. I could draw from it as rapidly as any other IWB holster I have worn and could reholster without a collapsed shell that needed to be opened up.

Although I found the defaults to be ideal for me the holster has a great deal of adjustment available. It has adjustable tilt angle, adjustable ride height, and adjustable retention.

It is a very versatile holster. You can even use it with a tucked in t-shirt.

Their warranty is awesome. With free shell trades for life if you change carry guns and forever protection against breakage.

WP_20150223_008WP_20150224_001Web

WP_20150223_011CroppedWP_20150223_012Cropped

Give this holster very serious consideration.

USPSA match results

I shot in another USPSA match today. The results for my division are as follows:

Match Results – Limited

Place

Name

USPSA

Class

Division

PF

Lady

Mil

Law

For

Match Pts

Match %

1 Hong, Andrew A83199 A LTD MAJOR N N N N 376.4578 100.000 %
2 LeRoux, Scott L3253 M LTD MAJOR N N N N 292.5846 77.720 %
3 Gillaspie, Brent A89049 U LTD MAJOR N N N N 255.9800 67.997 %
4 Denton, Charis A79746 U LTD MINOR N N N N 237.9736 63.214 %
5 Mc Nees Jr, Donald A52430 C LTD MINOR N N N N 227.0105 60.302 %
6 Sherman, Todd TY37515 C LTD MAJOR N N N N 215.8692 57.342 %
7 Huffman, Joseph TY29386 B LTD MAJOR N N N N 213.4978 56.712 %
8 Feucht, Alan A72439 C LTD MAJOR N N N N 212.2518 56.381 %
9 Fischer, Sarah A77996 C LTD MAJOR Y N N N 199.2419 52.925 %
10 Adams, Bryan A85106 U LTD MAJOR N N N N 189.7108 50.394 %
11 McClure, David A71541 C LTD MAJOR N N N N 180.8689 48.045 %
12 Baleros, Rae Arsen A53054 C LTD MAJOR N N N N 169.9922 45.156 %
13 Cook, Jason A85741 U LTD MINOR N N N N 124.4949 33.070 %
14 Mathena, Lee A54215 D LTD MAJOR N N N N 120.5627 32.026 %
15 Domingo, Noel A85786 C LTD MAJOR N N N N 106.1564 28.199 %
16 Daniels, Stephen PEN U LTD MINOR N N N N 101.9012 27.068 %
17 Reibman, Ryan A84564 U LTD MINOR N N N N 95.8378 25.458 %

I really need to practice more. I’m not shooting at a ‘B’ level like I used to.

This match was all classifiers and the “National Percentage” from these stages are, according to the classifier calculator, probably as follows:

It takes 60% to be in class ‘B’. I had problems with each of the stages which accounts for some it. The best example of this was that I shot a no-shoot target and got a miss on “Both Sides Now #1”. If I had achieved the same time and got the A-zone hit I would have had a 72.9621% percentage. I hit another no-shoot target with a miss in “The Roscoe Rattle” which would have translated into 62.9157% had I been a little more careful.

I had some minor equipment problems too. In “Can You Count” I loaded five rounds into each of my magazines because I can’t count as fast as I can shoot. In both strings the magazine did not lock the slide back. In the first string I was a bit confused and it took a while to reload and rack the slide. It happened in the second string as well but I was better prepared for it and it two seconds less than the equivalent first string. Had the slide locked back like it should have I probably would have had something like a time of about three seconds less. This would have resulted in a percentage of 61.6266%.

But I didn’t shoot like that. I made mistakes and my shooting represents that of a solid ‘C’ shooter (40%->59.9%), not ‘B’.

Must be at least six inches

Height over bore, that is.

I’ve only half jokingly mocked other “future weapon” designs in the past, saying that the trend is toward an ever more clownishly high sight axis. My educated guess is that this is in fact a psychological problem.

With the lower velocity of the grenade/shotgun, it would make actual sense to put it on the bottom, with the flatter trajectory rifle barrel closer to the sight axis.

The new terms like “Soldier integrated such and such” (which obviously turn ordinary warfare into something totally new and different) are also the result of psychological problems. Years ago, while reading one of the supposedly big cheese U.S. military publications, I found that such a thing as an “army” is, technically speaking, no more. No, ladies and gentlemen; we now have a “Soldier-Centric Force Structure” instead, don’t you know, which no doubt changes EVERYTHING.

The advantage you see is that people who have actual experience in stuff are no longer needed, and can therefore be safely and conveniently brushed aside. Who needs an Army General when you can have a shiny, new, Soldier-Centric Force Structure Command and Control Engineering Specialist? Hmm? Was General Patton a Soldier-Centric Force Structure Command and Control Engineering Specialist? I don’t think so. All he did was lead an Army to kill a bunch of folks and break things. Feh!

And who needs a stupid old rifle when you can have something that looks like it came out of a bad Sci-Fi movie written by an ignoramus, and having the ergonomics of a cinder block?

Quote of the day—Carl Z.

This is somewhat like a family reunion.

Carl Z.
December 31, 2014
[This was part of the note which Carl sent to me with his check for Boomershoot 2015.

It’s true. Many of the people who go to Boomershoot have been attending for many years and it’s the only time they see each other. It’s a very friendly and happy place. No real competition, just everyone turning money into noise, laughter, and smiles.

Be a part of it.—Joe]

Steel Challenge match results

As I reported the other day I attended a Steel Challenge match last Sunday. Here are the results:

Stage # SCSA ID Stage Name
1 ?? Go Fast
2 ?? No Forgiveness
3 ?? Focus
4 SC-106 Pendulum
 
Place Name Comp SCSA Division Aggregate Total Stage 1 Stage 2 Stage 3 Stage 4 DQ Additional
1 Steve M 34 A86909 OPN 66.34 66.34 12.46 17.52 17.55 18.69 Senior
2 Christian S 23 PROD 71.80 71.80 10.37 27.73 14.22 19.36 Junior
3 Jon S 42 OPN 83.20 83.20 12.29 31.39 21.35 18.05
4 Cel A 26 TY54938 ISP 83.43 83.43 12.78 18.37 21.37 30.79
5 Joe H 39 TY29386 ISP 96.86 96.86 16.92 23.68 25.27 30.87 Senior
6 Steve L 29 A22574 OPN 100.95 100.95 14.93 30.38 24.29 31.23
7 Michael M 1 PROD 111.28 111.28 14.78 36.52 29.07 30.79
8 David L 8 ISP 121.39 121.39 21.61 28.39 29.63 41.64 Law
9 Don C 11 A85736 PROD 126.14 126.14 19.73 38.49 32.14 35.66 Senior
10 Steve N 35 PROD 129.43 129.43 17.59 35.38 27.84 48.50
11 Mark P 40 A75542 ISR 129.76 129.76 26.85 39.08 31.61 32.10
12 Thomas P 4 PROD 140.92 140.92 19.94 32.46 34.12 54.28
13 Brad M 14 ISP 141.71 141.71 19.15 44.93 30.84 46.67
14 Koby W 32 PROD 143.88 143.88 19.58 49.42 28.43 46.33
15 Jen M 43 ISP 161.30 161.30 25.17 38.62 42.54 54.85 Lady
16 Chris S 10 PROD 185.27 185.27 20.80 53.06 47.61 63.68
17 Jason F 46 PROD 197.40 197.40 20.15 67.26 32.86 77.01
18 Jesse P 7 PROD 201.80 201.80 25.36 53.75 45.52 77.08
19 Ryan B 12 PROD 211.82 211.82 25.77 64.61 49.41 71.91
20 Craig S 9 PROD 212.21 212.21 22.93 60.11 51.89 77.19
21 James W 13 PROD 252.02 252.02 24.66 73.43 43.40 110.47 Senior
22 Bob L 20 ISP 336.19 336.19 51.71 86.61 86.05 117.74

I think I did okay for not having shot one in a year and a half. I also had at least three malfunctions in stage 1.

I think there is an error in my score for stage 3. I remember the first two times being in the 7’s and the last three all in the fives once I had it figured out. But they have one of my times as 8.35. I think it should have been 5.35. It doesn’t matter that much. It wouldn’t have changed my placement if that is what really happened.

I have a new part on my bench for my gun that I hope will fix the malfunctions when I try to shoot really fast. I should have it installed and tested by tonight.

Words still mean things

We all knew why the infamous H&K catalog depicted cartridges loaded backwards in a pistol magazine – photographers are not necessarily knowledgeable in the fields of their client’s businesses. In the gun industry however, we have Oleg.

I only bring this up to point out, once again, that a cartridge is not a bullet, any more than a tank of gasoline is an automobile.

The bullets shown on the catalog cover were not backwards. They were seated in the cases in the proper orientation. The cartridges however were inserted backwards into the magazine. Some people have loaded bullets backwards so as to achieve some desired terminal effect, as was explained in John Ross’ book for example.

If you walk into a gun store and ask for bullets, they’ll show you the bullets. If you ask for cartridges, they’ll bring you to the shelves of loaded ammunition. The standard, “Well you know what I mean so quit yer damn nitpicking” only comes after you’ve cleared up the misunderstanding that will certainly ensue when you use the wrong words.

Later I’ll post a story about my using one wrong letter in one word in a correspondence with a customer, and what happened because of it.

Anyway; many years ago we hired a sketch artist to depict a saxophone in a humorous cartoon advertisement. It was going to be an ad by a music instrument dealer, directed at musicians, so we wanted it to be accurate (we wanted our humor to be taken seriously). Since we knew the artist was not a sax player, we brought her in, showed her the various signature features of a sax, and then gave her one to study before doing the artwork. The ad also involved a dinosaur, so we had her look up that particular species of dinosaur and study it. That’s the kind of thing Walt Disney did for his cartoonists, and so it’s far from being a new concept. He brought a live fawn into the studio for his artists to study before doing the movie “Bambi”.

One of these is not like the others

I was doing some reloading and came across something I have never seen before. One of these is not like the others:

IMG_2061

These are Winchester Small Pistol primers (WSP). Lot number YAL201G.WP_20150209_001

I found this primer without an anvil in the first 1000 of a case of 5000. I’ll be watching for this sort of anomaly in the future. But it’s not something I have seen before in reloading over 60,000 rounds so the odds of it being of critical importance is a little low. Not that I would necessarily have caught it before, but I’m going to do my best to make sure I catch flaws like this from now on. I just never imagined I should inspect the primers before using them.

These are primers I purchased five to ten years ago so I doubt there are many, if any, from this lot still “in the wild”.

You never know

Sometimes you know a blog post or tweet will get some attention. I expected the days of effort I put into the Smart Gun stuff would get some attention and it did. Other times something I put a few seconds into gets attention which I didn’t expect it all.

Today I went to a Steel Challenge match at Renton Fish and Game Club. I tweeted about how wet it was after the days of rain we have had around here. No one seemed to care and I didn’t expect anyone would.

Expected a similar non-reaction when I tweeted:

Interesting. There were three people that made it a favorite and two retweeted it. The combined followers of the people that retweeted is over 40,000 people.

You just never know how must attention something you say or do is going to get.

Rounds in the last month

Exactly one month ago, on January 6th, I reported on the number of rounds I have reloaded. Here is an update on the number total number of rounds:

223.LOG: 2027 rounds.
22LR.log: 0 rounds.
3006.LOG: 467 rounds.
300WIN.LOG: 1351 rounds.
40SW.LOG: 36840 rounds.
45.log: 0 rounds.
9MM.LOG: 18643 rounds.
Total: 59328 rounds.

The change is all in .40 S&W. Last month it was 34,941 compared to the 36,840 for a delta of 1,899 (I lost one primer). This compares to an average of about 250/month in the previous 18 years.

I’ll soon be running out of .40 S&W bullets and will then switch over to 9mm until I run out of powder. Then I probably will move on to .300 Win Mag while I search and wait for pistol powder.

GunBot Reloading Powder is my friend.

Making power factor

The January/February 2015 issue of Front Sight magazine has an interesting article on the statistics of making “power factor*”.

While I certainly had the background in statistics it never occurred to me to apply them to the chronograph data from my hand loaded ammunition to determine the chances of me failing to “make major” at a match. This is despite very nearly failing to make major in the 1998 Area One USPSA match.

Looking at my log files for the ammunition I made for that match I found the following data:

Mean velocity: 992.6 fps
Standard Deviation: 11.3 fps
Bullet Mass: 180 grains
Power Factor: 178.67

Back then you had to have a power factor of 175 to make major and for some reason I thought I had plenty of margin.

At the 1998 Area One match staff pulled eight cartridges at random from the magazines on my belt and tested them as per USPSA regulations. They pulled the bullet from a cartridge and weighed it. They fired three rounds and found I failed to make major. They, as per procedure, fired another three rounds, used the highest three velocities from the six rounds fired and found I was closer but still failed. They had one round left and, as per procedure, asked me what to do with it, “Fire it or weight the bullet?” I had them fire it and using the highest three velocities from the seven rounds fired I just barely made major power factor.

It wasn’t until I read the title of the article in Front Sight article, “The Power of Statistics How to Meet Power Factor with Confidence” that I felt stupid for my experience at Area One.

The bottom line is that your chance of failing the test procedure depends on how many standard deviations you are away from the velocity threshold for the power factor you want to meet.

Using my example from the Area One match the velocity threshold is 972.22 fps (175,000 / 180). My mean velocity was 992.6 fps or 20.378 fps above the threshold. With a standard deviation of 11.3 fps the ammo was 20.378 / 11.3 or 1.8 standard deviations (commonly called ‘Z’) from the threshold. Using a normal distribution table or the article you will discover my chances of failing were about 13%.

Update:

Using this table from the article you will discover my chances of failing were about 13%:

Z Chance of Failing Power Factor (per USPSA rules)
2.5 5%
2.0 10%
1.9 11%
1.8 13%
1.7 15%
1.5 21%
1.4 26%
1.2 36%
1.1 40%
1.0 44%
0 50%

This table is not a standard distribution table. It is a mapping from Z (number of standard deviations away from the mean) to the chances of failing the PF test under USPSA rules. This was obtained using a t-distribution because of the small sample size used by the USPSA regulations. It is assumed the shooter obtained the mean velocity and standard deviation with a sample size of eight.

End update.

I’m going to range today to measure the velocities of a new load I plan to use for competition. I’m going to make sure I’m about 2.5 standard deviations away from the threshold which would put my odds of failing to make major at about 5%.


* Power Factor is defined as the mass of the bullet in grains multiplied by the velocity in feet per second divided by 1000. Or:

Power Factor = bullet weight (grains) x average velocity (feet per second) / 1000

In many competitions your targets are scored differently depending on the power factor of the ammunition you are shooting. For example if you are shooting Limited Class USPSA you “make major” with a power factor of 165 or greater and “make minor with a power factor of 125. For major power factor ‘B’ and ‘C’ zones hit are scored as 4 points and ‘D’ zone hits are scored as two points. If you “make minor ‘B’ and ‘C’ zones hit are scored as three points and ‘D’ zone hits are scored as one point. If you don’t have ammunition which gives you a power factor of 125 or greater all zones are scored as zero. I.E. you aren’t participating in the competition.

Bulk ammo sale

Via email from Bulk Ammo Direct. These look like good prices:

Bulk Ammo Direct is having a sale on the following items:

-Federal American Eagle 5.56, loaded with Lake City Brass to NATO specifications. This ammunition is an ideal choice for the shooter looking for a great, affordable round for target shooting, training and practice. The ammunition is new production, non-corrosive, in boxer-primed, reloadable brass cases.
$283.00/case of 900, 30 rounds/box, 30 boxes/case
$30.00/case flat rate shipping fee to be added
Minimum order 1 case

-New Federal .223 in bulk. 55GR FMJ – 1,000 rounds per bag encased.
$315.00/case
$30.00/case flat rate shipping fee to be added
Minimum order 1 case

-New production 22 LR
$85.00/Brick
$850.00/case of 5,000 rounds
$30.00 – $40.00/case shipping fee to be added
Minimum order 1 case

We also have another supply of pulldown WC 872 propellant, packaged in 40 LB boxes, 60 boxes per pallet, total of 2400 LBS/pallet.
$6.25/LB plus shipping
Minimum order 1 pallet

To order ammo, go to: www.bulkammodirect.com, or email: sales@bulkammodirect.com.

To order propellant or 22 LR ammo, call or email:

Marc Coury
Bulk Ammo Direct
OFF: 310.766.1121
DIRECT: 949.645.3815
marc@bulkammodirect.com
www.bulkammodirect.com

Jeff Semko
Bulk Ammo Direct
OFF: 310.766.1121
DIRECT: 310.493.9400
jeff@bulkammodirect.com
www.bulkammodirect.com

Gun safe expansion tools

Sometimes I wish I could just expand the size of my gun safe a little bit. It seems like there should be room in it for another gun or the magazines but it just doesn’t seem to work out. And I don’t want to buy another safe. I’m cramped enough for floor space as it is.

A few days ago I was asked if I would link to web site for gun storage solutions. After looking at the site a bit I decided they had some good products and agreed.

The Rifle Rods and Mag Mounts look particularly interesting to me.

You can’t really expand the gun safe in a practical manner but you can get more stuff into it if you organize it better.

USPSA match results

The last USPSA match I shot was in October of 2012. That’s two and a quarter years ago. Yesterday I shot in another one with a different group of people.

Two years ago I came second out of eight in my division. This time I came in fourth out of 10. I was fairly pleased with that result. But the main thing I was hoping to do was come in ahead of my son-in-law, John Vlieger. But I was a long way from accomplishing that result. Even if I had not had messed up one stage badly I still would have not beat him:

MCTS USPSA January 2015
1/17/2015
Match Results – Limited
Place Name USPSA Class Division PF Lady Mil Law For Match Pts Match %
1 Vlieger, John A79695 B Ltd MAJOR N N N N 580.4732 100.000 %
2 McIngvale, Trip FY62076 M Ltd MAJOR N N N N 559.8666 96.450 %
3 Sturdivant, Peter TY80329 A Ltd MAJOR N N N N 514.8913 88.702 %
4 Huffman, Joe TY29386 B Ltd MAJOR N N N N 363.6948 62.655 %
5 Fox, Todd   U Ltd MINOR N N N N 360.9411 62.180 %
6 Sturdivant, Charlie TY80586 C Ltd MAJOR N N N N 348.6704 60.067 %
7 Standley, Robert A49729 B Ltd MAJOR N N N N 344.5438 59.356 %
8 Mecklenburg, John   U Ltd MINOR N N N N 286.2143 49.307 %
9 Maloney, Edward   U Ltd MINOR N N N N 206.3510 35.549 %
10 Fata, Paul   U Ltd MAJOR N N N N 165.8097 28.565 %

Oh well. It’s just more incentive to get out and practice more.

A gun for the man in your life

Awesome.

It’s simple; just watch Ramno and get your man whatever he’s carrying (not that I’ve ever been able to sit through a Rambo movie without turning it off and finding something interesting to do, like watching some oil varnish dry, but I can imagine he carries some manly weapons).

I dunno, maybe a scoped 10 inch 500 S&W for IWB carry? Something a man can get his hands around. Ladies; if you want to get me the 500, I’d actually be cool with it. I’d just carry it in a shoulder holster of some kind is all. A set of loading dies for it would be nice too, please. A 7.5″ 454 Casull would be my second choice. That’s just because I already have a DAO 38 snubbie– It serves nicely as ballast for the case it’s stays in.

My 2 cents on the AR system

Both Uncle and Tam linked to what seems to me like an excellent article on the failure mode(s) of the M16/M4 system, which cemented, for me at least, a great deal of respect for the platform. If you haven’t read the whole thing, Do Read it.

It concludes (after much explanation of HOW the conclusions were derived);

“How to Deal With Heat Limits
The Training Answer: First, every GI should see those Colt test videos [of firing them to failure] and know what his gun can, and can’t, do. While the Black Hills guys were correct in noting that SF/SOF guys usually manually fire single shots or short bursts, even most of them don’t know what happens when a gun goes cyclic for minutes at a time. A good video explaining “why you can’t do that” would be a strong addition to training, not only for combat forces, but for support elements who may find themselves in combat and feel the urge to dump mags at cyclic rate.

The Morale Answer: Every GI should see the same done to AKs as well. There is a myth perpetuated by pig-ignorant people (like General Scales) that the AK series possesses magical properties and that the American weapons are crap. In fact, nobody I know of at the sharp end is at all eager to change, perhaps because the laws of physics and the properties of materials apply just as firmly to a gun originally created by a Communist in Izhevsk as they do to a concept crafted by capitalists in California. If you’ve ever fired an AK to destruction, you know that it grows too hot to hold, then the wooden furniture goes on fire, then, if you persist on firing it full-auto, it also goes kablooey. Not because there’s anything wrong with this rifle, but the laws and equations work the same for engineers worldwide.

The Systems Answer: As you can see from the Colt videos, if you clicked on over to Chivers’s article, thickening the barrel nearly doubled the rounds to catastrophic failure on cyclic. An open/closed bolt cycle might have practical benefits. They wouldn’t show up in sustained heavy firing like the destruction tests, but they might show up in how a weapon recoups from high temps, and open-bolt autofire would eliminate cook-offs, at least. But any such approach needs thorough testing.

The Wrong Answer: Replacing the M4 with something like the SCAR or the HK416, something that is, at best, barely better, that is much more maintenance intensive, and that, contra Scales’s assertion that his undisclosed client’s weapon is “the same price,” is twice (SCAR) or three times (416) the money. (The 416 mags are the best part of the system, though).”

I’ve fired over a thousand rounds in a day, both from an AK and a Ruger Mini-14, and didn’t come even close to failure, or even serious degradation of the rifles. (I haven’t tried it with the AR simply because my business hasn’t made products for it as yet) But then I’ve WORKED WITH steel since I was a kid, and know first hand how soft and moldable it becomes at high temperature, and I’ve seen how it can be “hammer welded” which is welding two pieces together that are red hot, just by hammering them together). And just about anyone who grew up on a farm understands “instinctively” that even the best steel becomes soft enough to bend like a pretzel, using nothing but hand and arm muscles, at high temperature, because THEY’VE DONE IT over and over. And so, without even having to think about it, it was natural for me to avoid over-heating the weapons. I’ve never had so much as a cook-off (again; as kids we sometimes cooked off naked rounds on purpose, because it was interesting and fun). I have no doubt than an AR-15 would do as well in a thousand round, one day test, though it may need a little attention to keep it cycling with the carbon that gets into the action. My Colt AR has been known to stop after about 350 rounds unless I keep it real wet (and depending on the particular ammo).

That one of the M4s in the battle related in the article was able to get through ~600 rounds in a very short time is pretty awesome. The physical limits of the steel were exceeded at that point, and physics is physics.

Another quote from the article stuck out to me as great. It addresses the trade-off between the ability of a weapon to fire an enormous number of rounds quickly without failure, verses the operator’s ability to actually carry it (because it’s too heavy). This may be a paraphrase, but it’s really close;
“You can carry it all day or you can fire it all day, but you can’t do both.” Yup. Take your pick.

But then if you’re unfortunate and pathetic enough to have gotten your technical and physics information from Hollywood actors you might believe that, “Fire doesn’t melt steel”.

I found it interesting to look at the “service life” of a typical rifle in terms of actual bullet-acceleration-in-bore time. If we assume a nice round number of one millisecond to push a bullet through the bore, and if we assume a nice round number of, say, 30,000 rounds to wear out the rifle, that’s a “service life” of thirty seconds. Compared to your family car’s engine, the combustion system in a rifle runs at awesome power levels, and with no oil pressure. Your actual mileage may vary.