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ww1 tear gas round getting old. now what?

bobskibobski Member Posts: 17,866 ✭✭✭
edited October 2008 in Ask the Experts
i have a ww1 12ga tear gas round starting to show signs of decay. the classic spots are starting to show in the brass hull.
Q: what are the odds of the gas being still in there?
Q: if i fire it, what do you suppose will happen?
Q: i hate to destroy it. its sorta a rare cartridge.

advice?
Retired Naval Aviation
Former Member U.S. Navy Shooting Team
Former NSSA All American
Navy Distinguished Pistol Shot
MO, CT, VA.

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    Bill DeShivsBill DeShivs Member Posts: 1,264 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Most tear "gas" cartridges actually contain a powder, rather than gas. I'm sure it will be fine.
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    CapnMidnightCapnMidnight Member Posts: 8,520
    edited November -1
    Bob,
    I think I would clean it up, then put varnish, or some other similar clear finish on it. Something to seal the oxigen away from it so it won't detereriorate anymore. Just an idea.
    W.D.
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    p3skykingp3skyking Member Posts: 25,750
    edited November -1
    Clean it and dip it in wax.
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    deputydog214deputydog214 Member Posts: 609 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Vacuum pack seal with a "FoodSaver" machine.
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    Horse Plains DrifterHorse Plains Drifter Forums Admins, Member, Moderator Posts: 39,616 ***** Forums Admin
    edited November -1
    I like the vacuum seal idea.
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    TxsTxs Member Posts: 18,801
    edited November -1
    I wouldn't suggest firing it.

    I don't know if this round of your's was designed to just expel tear gas powder itself or if it's designed to ignite the powder before it's expelled, but this could be significant.

    When burning powder munitions (smoke or gas canisters) get old the powder can cake and solidify. The result is that instead of all those individual flakes burning in a controlled manner the entire mass detonates at once. In other words, that entire 60 second burning canister detonates like a grenade.

    For this reason military procedures call for out of date or poorly stored burning powder munitions to be destroyed in a controlled manner, not just set off normally.
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    11b6r11b6r Member Posts: 16,584 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Most "Tear gas" rounds actually do not contain a gas- but powdered chloroacetophenone- a/k/a CN Tear Gas (or properly, a lacrymatory agent) CS teargas was not created until 1928. There are a total of a dozen different "tear gasses". Some munitions have a thermal element to convert powedered crystals to a vapor, but most shotshells just blow the powdered agent out in the air. CN IS toxic in high concentrations, but a single 12 g round is unlikely to do that in any space larger than a breadbox. Ziplock baggie would be a good move. I have some 12 g "Ferret" rounds that I was worried about- projectile is a little bomblet shaped thingy, filled with LIQUID teargas.
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    TxsTxs Member Posts: 18,801
    edited November -1
    Def-Tec 'Ferret' rounds contain liquid OC ('pepper spray'), not CS or CN. Much better stuff.

    There's really not much telling exactly what type of 'tear gas' the shell he's talking about contains. The US military used CN up until switching to CS in the 60's, but we didn't use tear gas of any sort in WWI. What he has is probably just an early 20th century US made riot control round of some sort.
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    11b6r11b6r Member Posts: 16,584 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    There IS an OC version of the Ferret round- now. Way back in the misty dawn of time, when I started fooling with this stuff, the Ferret was loaded with liquid CS. And it still available with CS. Altho I would agree that OC may work better. Citation: http://www.janes.com/extracts/extract/jpse/jpse4019.html

    And they will definitely punch a door or windshield.
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