About a month ago I loaded up a few 357mag from an old (20 plus years) pound of powder I had. I loaded up 5 rounds to see if the powder was still good (smelled good, looked good).
At home, the five I loaded all worked fine, so I loaded up another hundred or so more.
Off to the range, first shot out of the gate...squib.
What to do? I didn't want to pull bullets, but I really didn't want to pull squibs. (Ordered up a Hornandy cam lock bullet puller. Works great by the way.)
Today I pulled bullets. I wanted to see if the power burned, so after a dozen, outside I go. Powder burned fine.
Now I'm wondering why the squib. I use a case lube when loading, thought maybe that was the culprit. So pulled another 2 dozen. I spayed the rock I was burning powder on with case lube and let it dry, poured half the powder, then in a separate pile, I doused the powder with case lube. There didn't seem to be any difference in flame or heat from either pile.
The case that the squib came from, had a chunk of what looked like burnt powder, but it had all "welded" together. I've seen this before on yt videos. Anyone else seen this?
So, I think the powder was fine. I think using the case lube is fine. I think probably all of the other rounds I loaded would have been fine. The primers were new and did send the bullet into the barrel. I think perhaps there was another contaminant in the case. Maybe water from the wet tumble? Although these dried in my dehumidifier for several hours, there may still have been water in a case. Never know, but I will check them better in the future.
While I was burning off the powder, I figured "might as well" get rid of a very old pound of Black powder. Nasty stuff that Black powder. My advise, burn in small quantities and use a 10 foot match.
Smokeless powder burns slow, but hot with a lot of flame. Black powder just pooooooooofs in all directions.
I've heard this can be used as fertilizer? Anyone know for sure? I have another pound, don't want this stuff in the house.