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KEYHOLING Questions (anyone have INFO) - my case Heritage Revolver


PAULSHOOT

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I covered Keyholing on my Heritage Rough Rider 22 six shooter revolver under a topic I had started previously (started when buying the gun). a Heritage Rough Rider 22 It's as you know a rather cheap gun (paid $119 for it). I have been happy with it as fun to shoot, play cowboy, loading and unloading one at a time, cocking the hammer to fire single action. Just like Wyatt. HA!

Anyway, I decided to expand the Keyholing events with a New Post regarding in hopes of getting more information about causes. There is some info on Internet search (GOOGLE) under the word Keyholing. You also get some U-Tube (of course). A friend of mine is somewhat of a gun expert (did some gunsmith work as more of a hobby) and also provided some inputs.

Just wondering if any other inputs from YOU ALL?

In my case, none or very little evidence of Keyholing but sometime ago I saw elongated holes in targets VS nice round little 22 caliber holes. A couple days ago at the range -- it really was BAD. Showed up, but accuracy not bad at 20 foot (4 inch target).  Then went to 30 foot and had only three in 4 inch (rest within say 6 inch) and of course elongated holes (Keyholing).  

Hopefully, I can show pictures here.  I could not on the previous post due to limit of 40.9KB. GROAN

First Picture is at 30 foot and 4 inch target (keyholing very evident). Like I said, I had also shot at 20 foot target and msot all in the black, but obvious Keyholing there also. 

I have reduced the pictures to like 15KB files -- see what happens.

DANG, now says can only use 10.2 KB (WHAT IS THE DEAL ON THESE LIMITS?).

Reduced to 9.0KB (might be too small to see) - it allowed that. However, pretty small picture, think can still see how the holes are not little round 22 Caliber Holes and accuracy is way off (14 rounds at 30 foot 4 inch target).  

 

IMG_20180320_105829.jpg

Edited by PAULSHOOT
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Some INFO I have received from Internet and hobby gunsmith friend for causes of Keyholing. (HOPE Someone can add to this).:confused: 

1) Leaded up barrel - either in rifling valleys or build up deposits

2)  Twist rate f rifling VS weight and speed of bullets

3) Kind of AMMO used (grain and speed) BTW - not just talking 22 here, many other guns exhibit this Keyholing - check U-Tubes. 

NOTE: That is about all I can remember - but friend said it is hard to get lead out of barrel (brushing does not work well - there is a special tool). I don't know.  

PS: I did a lot of cleaning (brushing with brass and fiber brush and #9 Solvent after the Keyholing shoot.

Then yesterday (3-22-18), I ran 6 rounds (3 BLAZER lead nosed) and (3 AM Eagle Hollow Point Copper Coated) at 20 feet at a 1/2 inch spot on a target sheet. 2 rounds on target, 1 about 1/2 inch off, 2 about an inch off, and 1 about 2 1/4 inch off. No Keyholing. 

Sad, only ran 6 rounds cause I was limited in time at range (FREE 30 MIN) and wanted to test new GSG 1911 22LR with different AMMO - ran about 130 rounds thru that -- BTW, No Keyholing. 

Edited by PAULSHOOT
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Mostly what he said....

velocity doesn't match twist rate, either too fast or too slow. 

Bullets don't bite the rifling because the grooves are clogged or worn away, or the bullets are too small or bore too large (worn). 

Some obstruction, typically near the muzzle, that's "tripping" the bullet on the way out.  

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Another possibility for revolvers:  Bad cylinder/barrel alignment, which shaves some of the bullet as it moves from the cylinder into the barrel.  Most often seen on well-worn and/or cheaply made revolvers.  Frequently (not always) accompanied by spitting at the barrel/cylinder gap.

Edited by Whisper
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On 3/23/2018 at 3:46 PM, gregintenn said:

Did you put the barrel in a vice to try and tighten it as discussed in the other thread. If so, perhaps you squeezed it too hard?

I did not do anything to the sights except a spot of white paint on front sight (set bottom of that paint mark near grove on rear -- a little offset to the right for windage). 

PS: Thanks for the feedback from everyone. I did some more cleaning on the barrel and to me it looks great. This gun has not had many rounds thru it (just a guess of a couple hundred). I think the barrel is OK as I can't see any buildup and believe the valleys are OK.

Some of the ideas about line up of cylinder and barrel (gap) may be the problem --- it is not high quality at $119 (well list is $179), but does seem pretty well made. 

Let's see if this web site will let me post a picture of the six rounds (shot a couple days after the bad Keyholes in the picture above). I had cleaned the barrel more before shooting the six rounds and used different AMMo (3 BLAZER lead bullet and 3 American Eagle Hollow Point Copper Coated). NO KEYHOLES.  

Could Not Load Picture (it's only 32KB). Got MSG said "Problem Loading -- contact us). I give up.

Describe No Keyholes - 2 rounds on the dot, 1 about 1/2 inch off, 2 about an inch off, and 1 about 2 inches off (at 20 feet and using a rest).  

Try it again after another cleaning when Have more time to shoot more.  

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On 3/23/2018 at 2:14 PM, Whisper said:

Another possibility for revolvers:  Bad cylinder/barrel alignment, which shaves some of the bullet as it moves from the cylinder into the barrel.  Most often seen on well-worn and/or cheaply made revolvers.  Frequently (not always) accompanied by spitting at the barrel/cylinder gap.

That may be some of it -- don't know what is excessive, but I do notice gas (not sure any fragments with it).

Then as I said above reply --- last six rounds I shot after cleaning and using different AMMO were OK.

See what the future brings -- I did some more cleaning since shooting those 6 rounds.  

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Do you have the WMR (.22 Magnum) cylinder for it?  I would be curious to see if you have the same problems with .22 Magnum.  I say that because .22WMR is, to my understanding, slightly larger in diameter than .22LR.  So in combo guns (all Heritage Rough Riders have the ability to be combo guns whether they come with the WMR cylinder or not) the barrel has to have an internal diameter large enough to shoot WMR meaning the internal diameter is already slightly oversize for .22LR.  That is why 'combo' guns are often a little more accurate with WMR.  I am speculating that - if the internal diameter of your, particular barrel happened to be on the high end of tolerances then maybe that could cause problems with .22LR.  If .22WMR does not exhibit the same issues then that might be a clue as to what is going on.  If, on the other hand, you have the same issues with .22WMR then either the internal diameter is way out of tolerated specs or there is something else going on.

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I do not have the 22 Magnom Cylinder (just wanted a plinking target gun that was OL West Style and cheaper AMMO - and cheaper gun).

I am surprised to hear 22 Mag bullet is slightly larger diameter.  

Latest on the gun:

I did a 90 round shoot Monday (that following a thorough cleaning) and used three different AMMOS. Too bad can't post pictures of targets here.  

Summary is -- Keyholing and think got worse on the last 40 rounds. 

I could see a bit of lead deposit on the barrel (end of barrel where the bullet from cylinder enters) after that shoot.

A friend that is pretty savvy on guns suggested the misalignment of cylinder (not locking solid). I thought it had a bit of play (pull hammer back to lock cylinder) - say 1/64 guess rotation.

I didn't know if that is excessive or not. SO, took it by his house yesterday and we messed with it. 

He felt lock up was OK. We picked the little bit of lead build up out of the barrel.

Took it down to his shooting range (in the woods). Tried three different AMMOs (all coated Hollow Point - CCI, AM Eagle, Remington) - some, most / not all, shots show Keyholing.

Here is the INTERESTING PART.  

He had some 22 CB (primer only, no powder as I understand it). That shot good at 22 feet (decent group and no keyholes).

He had some CCI Standard Velocity (I think that is 1070 FPS). That shot good at 22 feet (good group, about 3 inches, and no keyholes). Only shot six rounds of that. 

MAKES ME WONDER if that gun does better on low velocity AMMO ????????? One theory above is that the number of twists and velocity / weight of bullet might not be compatible).

I have a 100 rounds of the CCI Standard to try -- if that solves the problem (use that from now on). Either way, I intend to call Heritage about the problem and see what they say or what they will do. 

BTW, also looked at the barrel after shooting -- did not see the lead build up as I had from the 90 rounds a couple days before. 

I WILL TRY to show that target picture (not had nay luck putting pictures in lately - even after going to the trouble of downsizing below the 49KB).  I reduced the picture to 32KB, see if it works.  

NOPE Got Msg -- "There was a problem processing the uploaded file. Please contact us for assistance."

Not sure who to contact???  

    

Edited by PAULSHOOT
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  • 2 weeks later...

Pretty convinced keyholing is minimized (nearly none) when using lower velocity AMMO (like Standard 1070 FPS). Can't say for sure that there is absolutely no keyholing, but what I have tested so far (shooting some standard and some high velocity) so far has shown improvement.

I have given up showing target pictures on this web site (not even going to try). Just say the last shoot at a friend's I used some HV and had a couple Keyholes (not as bad as previous, but it does vary). Might add before that shoot, I took a cone shaped grinding stone (like from a dremel set - could not use a tool only the stone),  but set the stone in the area where the cylinder would be (took cylinder out of course) and rotated it a bit by hand.  I think the inner part of the barrel felt smoother (like a slight very slight bevel at the inner entrance of the barrel). Trying to say - where the bullet first enters the barrel. My thoughts were, that was a bit rough and might have added to damage of the bullet -- might have helped, but saw a couple keyholes.

Then shot some Standard Velocity and no keyholes.   

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Latest is I called Heritage Customer Service to discuss the 22 Revolver Keyholing problem. Informed them I am pretty sure it does better with lower Velocity AMMO (used Standard 1070), but do see some keyholing occasionally. Also, have seen High Velocity AMMO does not keyhole every round.

I mainly wanted to see if they have had experiences with keyholing on the 22LR  Heritage Revolver and if they recommend Standard Velocity over High Velocity AMMO. 

Sum it up by saying the representative did not indicate keyholing to be a known historic problem. He actually put me on hold to research a bit and came back to say 'they test with AMMO in 36 to 37 Grain range and should be OK up to 13xx Feet Per Second (forget the xx value he mentioned).

NOTE: Personally, I don't remember seeing or buying anything but 35 or 40 grain and in range of 1070 FPS (CCI) up to 1280 FPS (CCI).     

My AMMO on hand shows 40 Grain (I think I have had 35 Grain at times) and Velocity from 1070 to 1235 to 1280 FPS. He said any of that AMMO should be OK.

They are welling to take the gun in and look at it.  I decided to let it ride and see how it does in future, if it gets worse, I will send it in.

PS: I am OK with Low Velocity AMMO for targets except it costs more (like $0.02 to $0.03 per round more). EX: Bought some CCI Low Velocity (1070 FPS) for $6.99 plus tax for 100 rounds (that be $0.75 + per round) VS been getting higher velocity for as low as $0.04 per round (friend and I split a 2500 round sale on Blazer (CCI) for $99.95 -- 1250 rounds for $50.  Typically find stuff for $0.05+ per round.   

 

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I could not live with even the thought of random keyholing.  Not sure what their warranty or customer service is like but I would be inclined to send it in.  Those things are so cheap they might just send you a new one.

Don’t know if it’s been mentioned but a damage barrel crown could cause the problem as well.

Edited by Garufa
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On 3/23/2018 at 10:32 AM, PAULSHOOT said:

....

DANG, now says can only use 10.2 KB (WHAT IS THE DEAL ON THESE LIMITS?).

Reduced to 9.0KB (might be too small to see) - it allowed that. However, pretty small picture, think can still see how the holes are not little round 22 Caliber Holes and accuracy is way off (14 rounds at 30 foot 4 inch target).  

 

IMG_20180320_105829.jpg

 

BTW, this must be referring to your total account limit for picture space?

(I just did some 100k ones, which did fine)

 

- OS

 

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On 4/21/2018 at 5:34 PM, Garufa said:

I could not live with even the thought of random keyholing.  Not sure what their warranty or customer service is like but I would be inclined to send it in.  Those things are so cheap they might just send you a new one.

Don’t know if it’s been mentioned but a damage barrel crown could cause the problem as well.

Barrel Crown ???? Sorry, not familiar with the term, is that the end of barrel where the projectile exits.

I don't visibly seen any damage there if that is the case.  

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5 minutes ago, PAULSHOOT said:

Barrel Crown ???? Sorry, not familiar with the term, is that the end of barrel where the projectile exits.

I don't visibly seen any damage there if that is the case.  

Some of the less expensive manufacturers crown the barrel from a lathe using the outside of the barrel as a guide. The problem is rarely that the inside of the barrel is exactly the center. If that’s the case , it wouldn’t be an obvious flaw. 

And yes, the crown is the end of the barrel where the projectile last touches rifling .

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1 hour ago, tntnixon said:

Some of the less expensive manufacturers crown the barrel from a lathe using the outside of the barrel as a guide. The problem is rarely that the inside of the barrel is exactly the center. If that’s the case , it wouldn’t be an obvious flaw. 

And yes, the crown is the end of the barrel where the projectile last touches rifling .

Thanks for the reply. 

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  • 4 weeks later...

Convinced it does much better (no Keyholing obvious) with Standard AMMO (been using CCI 1070 FPS).

I shot it today at 20, 30, and 48 feet (no key holing obvious to me). I would post pictures of the targets, but have not figured out how to do that yet (I have not tried the recommended procedure, seems a lot of trouble).   

I hate that Standard Velocity costs more than HV AMMO. Best I have found in small quantity purchases is like $6.99 plus tax ($7.73 or something) for 100 rounds of CCI.

That VS a buddy of mine and I bought some Blazer (CCI) HV for $0.04 a round in a 2500 quantity ($100 delivered - free shipping). We split the order.

Maybe talk to them about taking it back -- have no idea what shipping costs.  

 

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  • 1 month later...

Shot the Heritage some the last couple weeks (STD VEL AMMO - CCI at 1070 FPS and Aquilla at 1130 FPS).

BY THE WAY, I found some Aquilla STD VEL at Academy Sports ($25 plus tax = $27.23 total with FREE Shipping on 500 Rounds) and bought it. Been very reliable AMMO so far.  

It does OK with STD VEL (1070 CCI and 1130 Aquilla) - MFG says 1050 to 1150 FPS.

Occasionally, it does OK with High Velocity (like last week I had 3 rounds of HV left and it worked with no problem).

I  have also gotten better with shooting it (accuracy), with other guns as well.  

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