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Monday, 18 December 1905

Mr WILKINSON (MORETON, QUEENSLAND) - In this morning's newspapers, there is an account of the bursting of another cartridge at Castlemaine. It seems to me that the ammunition is not entirely at fault in these cases, and I ask the Vice-President of the Executive Council if he will' request the Minister of Defence to see that in any further inquiry that is made, the condition of the rifles, as well as the composition of the ammunition, is looked into. In my opinion, the bursting may be due partly to want of care of the rifles. If rifles are neglected after cordite has been fired in them, and nickel-plated bullets are used, they are far more apt to choke, and thus cause an explosion, than was the case with the old rifles, in which the twist of the bore was not so great, and which were not corroded by the black powder used in them, while the missile was a soft leaden bullet.

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