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Question about Primers and Presses vs Hand Priming

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Hello!

 

So since my last post I've been busy getting what I needed to start, ended up getting a Dillon 550C.  Part of that was getting a BUNCH of federal primers since they had a rebate with free hazmat at midway. 

 

I started to mention to some of my shooting friends that I got into reloading, then got connected with some of their friends  that load as well... but they don't load for uspsa.  they just load for hunting and general usage.

 

They all told me I made a mistake getting federal primers because they heard so many stories of primers detonating on presses.   They told me that I should just skip priming with press and hand de-prime/ prime everything myself to prep. 

 

Don't know if this matters but I'm exclusively going to be loading 9mm.    I did read that federal primers are "soft" so it kind of made sense. 

 

I did a google search on "primer detonation federal primers"  and there are some concerning posts, some as recent as last year.  Most of them that mention Dillon mention the 650.  

 

Should I be concerned at all?   I'd rather not find out the hard way.   I also read a post saying "its not if you ever get a primer detonation, its *when* you get one" using a press.   

 

Since I'm admittedly pretty ignorant with reloading brass at this time, was wondering if you guys could give me insight as to how / why this could happen and what I should watch out for if I'm going to use the press for de-prime / priming.

 

If hand priming is really the way to go, which one should I get?

 

Thanks!

 

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I would never hand prime. I’ve never had primer detonation, but I would guess it’s caused from debris or a snag in the primer tube on the press. Or maybe a misaligned primer disc/shell plate. I’ve loaded a few thousand federals on my 650 and a bunch of Winchester’s and it’s been fine. I’ve heard to wear safety glasses while loading in case of primer detonation, but other than that I think you’ll be fine

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I have loaded 10s of thousands of federal primers on a 550 and 650..nëver had any issues.. 

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I can appreciate your concern. I have been loading for 25 years using CCI, Federal, Winchester, Remington and other brands as well. I have no idea how many 10’s of thousands of rounds I have loaded over the years.

I have had 2 primer detonations. First was CCI large Pistol primer and the second one was early last year with a Winchester small Pistol primer. This was on 2 different presses and priming systems. My advice is don’t force a primer when seating it. If it takes more than “normal” force stop and check why it’s taking more than normal force. Correct what needs corrected and move on.

When you start loading pay attention to how the primer feels when seating them. In a short time you’ll develop a feel for normal and what’s not normal.

Secondly, clean your primer system including your primer tubes every couple thousand rounds. I just cleaned mine yesterday pushing an alcohol pad through the ID of my primer tubes (the alcohol pads came out yellow from primer dust) and wiped off my transfer bar. And last but certainly not least; wear safety glasses.

Reloading is a fun and safe hobby. Establish a safe routine and pay attention to the details.


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I've loaded at least 60,000 rounds on my SDB, and

NEVER had a primer detonation - I've never used

Federal primers, though.

 

I'd listen to Knoch and Rap, above - good luck.

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The detonation tends to happen if a primer is smeared and there is enough primer residue in the primer magazine tube and/or the shell plate track.  Loading on an automated 1050 for almost 3 years, close to 100K rounds, only had one smeared primer go poof. And it was CCI, and probably my fault as I was just learning how to run my press with automation.   Keep the press clean (use canned air or a compressor to blow gunk away), periodically clean the primer mag tube, pay attention to how primers seat, and you should be ok.  Always wear at least eye pro, just in case.  

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Posted (edited)

Federal primers are top notch and detonation (although very rare) can happen with any brand of primer.

 

Worse case scenario, you have a new chandelier:

 

image.thumb.png.ae160b817ab693f25e6066b086bc5018.png

Edited by 4n2t0

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I also have never had a primer detonation on my 650 (got the 650 in 1995)  using all brands of primers especially Federals for my revolvers. The funny thing is years ago Lee specifically said they do not recommend using Federal primers in their hand primers. Not sure if they still do but I remember reading and looking into it before deciding that I was going to anyway. 

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I don't think there is much risk involved however you deprime your cases.

I hand prime, but I'm doing my loading in large batches so it just seems easier that way.  Also, you never have any primer problems while loading on a press if the cases are already primed (be sure you have no decapping pin in any dies).

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