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I have an old model .38 trooper 4" with what appears to be a bulged barrel. I had been shooting standard vel .38 special through in with good accuracy, but when I run a bore brush down the barrel it goes about half way down then has no resistance for at least a half inch then is tight again. Looking at the outside arond the barrel where the indetation for the ejector rod is there is a bulge that can be seen if you put a strait edge against it. The gun functions and locks up great. It has alot of holster wear, less than 50% blue left. I think I should be looking for a new barrel, but what would cause this and was it dangerus to shoot the gun?
 

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Barrels bulged near the middle are usually caused by firing a "squib load" or a round with no powder at all.

The fired bullet stays in the bore, and the shooter, not noticing it, fires another round.
When the fired bullet hits the stuck bullet, something has to give, and it's usually the barrel, which gets bulged or ringed.

Unfortunately, finding good, usable Trooper barrels is getting harder and harder.
You can sometimes find them on Ebay or on gun forum "For Sale" areas.

Be aware that many of these used barrels are defective, and often the problem isn't apparent until a gunsmith attempts to fit it.

Generally, how safe it is to shoot a bulged barrel depends on how badly it's bulged and where the bulge is.
If you've been shooting it and haven't had any problems, it should be OK.
 
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