Breech bolt assemblies from the Gatling guns used on fighter aircraft failed during firing tests. Metallography of the failed components revealed considerable decarburization which resulted in a loss of surface hardness. It was also determined that the maraging steel components were not in the nitrided condition as was required. This resulted in lower wear and fatigue resistance. These components also had a silicon content nearly double of that specified. The high silicon content lowered the notch tensile strength and toughness of the components.