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Hand seating primers


kimmie
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I am loading on a Dillon 550 and I've tried everything that's been suggested to adjust my press to get my primers to seat deeper.  I've tightened the shell plate and everything else.  I push as hard as I can on the up stroke to seat the primer.  They aren't quite flush but apparently not deep enough because I can't get my trigger weight below 8 lbs.  I even had Dillon send me a new primer cup.  I shoot a 627 and only use Federal primers.  One other thing is that I'm using Federal magnum match primers because they were the only ones I could find when I bought some about a year ago.  Could that make a difference?  I've been trying to research hand seating and wanted to see if I could get some suggestions on what is the best tool to use.  Lee, hornady, rcbs????  I figured I can deprime and size the brass and then do a priming session at the kitchen table.  I know it will be extra work but I'm willing to do it because even at 8lbs, I get the occasional misfire and it's frustrating.  Open to any and all suggestions! 

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2 minutes ago, Waltermitty said:

You may have another problem causing misfires, but I put a shim under the anvil in the primer bar to seat primers more deeply.

How do I do that? Where exactly do I place the shim?  Sounds like an easy fix.  And the misfires happen on both of my 627's, both have 8lb triggers.

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33 minutes ago, kimmie said:

One other thing is that I'm using Federal magnum match primers because they were the only ones I could find when I bought some about a year ago.  Could that make a difference? 

The last information that I had heard/seen was that Federal MAgnum pistol primers and their Rifle primers are basically the same.

My revo's will not reliably fire sm rifle or magnum primers but always fire fed sm pistol primers loaded on a 550.

I have a tanfo. gold team open gun that will fire fed, win pistol primers but will not fire fed sm rifle primers reliably.

 

Try and find a box of fed sm pistol primers and slowly lower the weight of your main spring to see if it works for you.

 

I run my revos at 61/2 lbs, with lightened hammers etc.  that is a personal choice because I tend to short stroke them if they are much lighter.

 

Hope it works out 

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1 minute ago, jcc7x7 said:

The last information that I had heard/seen was that Federal MAgnum pistol primers and their Rifle primers are basically the same.

My revo's will not reliably fire sm rifle or magnum primers but always fire fed sm pistol primers loaded on a 550.

I have a tanfo. gold team open gun that will fire fed, win pistol primers but will not fire fed sm rifle primers reliably.

 

Try and find a box of fed sm pistol primers and slowly lower the weight of your main spring to see if it works for you.

 

I run my revos at 61/2 lbs, with lightened hammers etc.  that is a personal choice because I tend to short stroke them if they are much lighter.

 

Hope it works out 

 

Thanks!  I did wonder if the magnum primers were harder but when I started shooting revolver about 5 years ago, that was all I could find and bought a ton of them.  Then last year, same story.  So, I've never loaded anything other than that.  I will definitely look for some of the regular primers.  I'd be more than happy with a 7lb trigger but even more so, with no misfires!

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1 hour ago, kimmie said:

How do I do that? Where exactly do I place the shim?  Sounds like an easy fix.  And the misfires happen on both of my 627's, both have 8lb triggers.

 

Look at the primer bar. The anvil and spring loaded cup are held in the bar with an allen screw. Take it apart and put your shim in the hole the anvil seats into. Too thick and the cup (and primer) will hang on the underside of the shell plate. 

 

8lbs is more than enough to light the primers. There are a few things that could cause occasional misfires. I would focus on maintaining minimal end shake and getting the hammers perfectly centered in the frames so they cannot walk back and forth and rub the frame as they fall on the firing pin. The only way I found to do that was either narrowing the hammers or widening the frames and using hammer shims to ensure centering and the minimum amount of drag. If you can see drag marks on the sides of your hammers that could cause occasional misfires.

 

I also either lightened my factory hammers or used the Apex hammer to reduce mass. 

 

Until end shake, hammer weight and hammer drag is perfect the guns won't be reliable, even with primers .004" below flush.

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Thanks for all the replies. 

 

11 hours ago, Waltermitty said:

8lbs is more than enough to light the primers. There are a few things that could cause occasional misfires. I would focus on maintaining minimal end shake and getting the hammers perfectly centered in the frames so they cannot walk back and forth and rub the frame as they fall on the firing pin. The only way I found to do that was either narrowing the hammers or widening the frames and using hammer shims to ensure centering and the minimum amount of drag. If you can see drag marks on the sides of your hammers that could cause occasional misfires.

 

 

 

So much still to learn! That's what I love about this forum.  It makes sense, now that you explain it, that endshake and hammer rub would affect the ignition of the primer.  But, that is way beyond my level of expertise to fix, although a video I just watched makes it look fairly straight forward.   The good news is that my primary gun is off to TK custom for a trigger job with speed hammer so hopefully if that's an issue, it will be addressed. And, that was one of the reasons for my question about seating primers.  I don't want to have an action job done and be held back from lightening my trigger because of primer seating issues.  I have a spare sp primer bar so I'll play around with that though and see what I can do.  I also ordered some federal sp primers.  I'll hold off on buying a hand primer until I try everything else.  Thanks so much!

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This thread is certainly timely on two fronts for me:

 

First in regard to primer seating, when I got thick into revolver this last year I was still hand seating. Being over-zealous on try to "well-seat" primers, I was giving the primer tool the death grip and seating them a little too deep. I obtained the primer tube and mount for my single stage JR2 and after getting the feel of that, it seems to doing well. While I'm fine cranking out .40 on my progressive for Limited USPSA shooting, my comfort level keeps me on the single stage for short colt for the revo. This keeps my production numbers down but sufficient for the one ICORE match a month I attend (and live fire practice).

 

Secondly, being new to the Federal primer hunt, I got a little bit of the magnum primers to try. I have the first 200 rounds loaded to test next week. Maybe re-chrono although those on the googles say that there's only a 3-5 point bump in PF and there's no pressure signs in my current load. I don't expect a bit of hardness to be a factor. After mishaps with two Wolff springs in a row, I had the factory mainspring put back in and it sets off Winchester primers now.

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The OP may want to consider using a primer pocket reamer on his brass to get a consistent seating depth as well.
Meh. Deepening the pockets will just require more firing pin protrusion.

Most folks run the reamer in until it stops cutting. The correct usage is to just kiss the bottom of the pocket. You want to remove the radius between the sides and bottom of the pocket while cutting as little as possible. You don't even need to cut the entire surface of the bottom of the pocket, just around the edges where the cup and anvil sit.
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5 hours ago, Distant Thunder said:

The OP may want to consider using a primer pocket reamer on his brass to get a consistent seating depth as well.

Been there, done that.  Didn’t work and as Pat mentions the primer now needs to sit deeper.  

 

I’m guilty of going to deep too.  Why, -shiny and clean.

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7 hours ago, pskys2 said:

Start by getting some winchester (seated a bit below flush they should ignite at 8#'s), better would be Federals, load them up and see if the problem persists.

You may have an issue with the gun i.e. headspace, timing or even broken pins.

 

Just ordered a bunch of regular federal small pistol primers.  I have been using the federal magnum match up to this point. My problem is that on my 550 I can only seat them to barely below flush, thus my question about hand priming. Gun is off to TK custom for a master trigger job with a speed hammer so hopefully if any of the issues that you mentioned are present, they will be fixed.

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1 hour ago, kimmie said:

 

Just ordered a bunch of regular federal small pistol primers.  I have been using the federal magnum match up to this point. My problem is that on my 550 I can only seat them to barely below flush, thus my question about hand priming. Gun is off to TK custom for a master trigger job with a speed hammer so hopefully if any of the issues that you mentioned are present, they will be fixed.

Good guy to work with.  Where did you find Fed SPP?  

My 550 can seat primers to just below flush which is what you want.  My simple test is to run my thumb over the primer, if I feel a depression, it will be slight, it's good.  It's worked well for me.  I do seem to remember may years ago with 45 I had a similar issue, turned out is was either the stem was cocked or some really old cases with heavily carboned primer pockets.  At that time I was using a lot of 231, WST, 473AA powders.  About that time I switched to Clays/Titegroup, reset the primer stem and cleaned some of the primer pockets.  Ultimately started using new cases and with the different powders the problem went away even after many reloads and I've not seen it since.

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14 minutes ago, pskys2 said:

 Where did you find Fed SPP?  

 

Midsouth shooters supply. $31.86/thousand. I was pretty surprised they had them in stock.  I do feel a very slight depression when I run my finger over the primer.  So, as others have pointed out, maybe there are other issues going on.  It will be about a month before I get my gun back so I won't be able to test all the theories but meanwhile, I'm going to take my press apart and give it a good cleaning.  Maybe that will help too.  I know a lot of folks on here have said that they run a 550 and seat the primers with no problem.

Edited by kimmie
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