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Reloading Berger Bullets


primer failure

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Unread 01-08-2011, 08:52 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 169
primer failure

Have CCI 450 primers (new supply) out of 10--- four would not fire, cycled bolt and three of the four did fire. Question is what do you do with a loaded round that has been strike (heavy) and didn't fire???

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Unread 01-08-2011, 09:13 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: IOWA
Posts: 2,123
Re: primer failure

Good question. I have not run into this, but I guess I would pull the bullet out and dump the powder, and start over.
Sounds like you might need to check your primer pin depth.
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Unread 01-08-2011, 10:29 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Ogden, Utah
Posts: 249
Re: primer failure

I have only had this sort of thing happen to me one time in the past. It was one round and it was more like a delayed fire. I pulled the trigger and heard the firing pin hit...nothing for a few seconds. I actually thought that i had not picked up the bullet from the mag at first. A few seconds later....BOOM! I can only guess that this was my fault in not paying attention enough during the cleaning of the primer pockets and flash hole and left a piece of corn cob in their from tumbeling. Needless to say, I check and double check and then tripple check before I do anything else now. Dont know if this is your problem but it is an Idea. Pull the bullets and see what is going on. dump the powder and see what it looks like and then pop the primer and see what it looks like.
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Unread 01-09-2011, 08:34 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: NC, oceanfront
Posts: 4,083
Re: primer failure

CCI's require better strike than sufficient for others. But they are good primers, and you can work out the bugs in your striking with them.
Explosives react to peak energy. Not just amount, but amount applied at once.
This is why you can slowly crush a primer completely without setting it off(but not always).
And you might have normal dimpling on the back of your primers, but they can still fail to fire.

-It's cold out, the bolt/pin lube viscosity is slower. This means energy applied slower.
-Your pin depth or spring might need adjusting. It might not be traveling with sufficient speed on strike, or far enough to crush the primer pill in a way that sets it off. I've found that there can be a sweet spot between too deep, and too shallow for a primer/cartridge/action.
-You might not be seating primers to the bottom of their pockets, at a slight pre-crush amount. This allows the primers to move on strike, reducing peak of the energy applied.

People try different primers during load development until happening into a combo that works best for some reason.. No consistency to this.. In fact, this is just opposite of a method.
I suggest that ANY primer can work just as well, once the bugs are worked out.
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Unread 01-09-2011, 08:45 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 1,476
Re: primer failure

It sounds like you are either not seating your primers deep enough or you have a too light of a firing pin spring.
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Unread 01-09-2011, 11:52 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: greenwood, IN
Posts: 4,032
Re: primer failure

I'm assuming you got a good strike on the primer face. Would be interesting to see just how far below the case head the primer is seated (.005" below is about right).

You need a good bullet puller to take the round apart. The Hornaday or the Forster both work well. Dump the powder in the trash can! Stand the case upright in a loading tray, and fill the cases up with warm water (not hot) and let them set for a couple hours. Now very carefully decap the primers. I've heard of folks doing this with WD40, but water has always worked well for me. The idea is to kill the primer, and then decap. I'd also be looking at how I prime the cases, as you mabe contaminating them before pressing them into the case body.
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Unread 01-10-2011, 04:25 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 169
Re: primer failure

First of all, thank you all for the input and in check out the ones that didn't fire this is what I found.

Looking at the hit on the primer it looks to be much lighter that the others that fired.
Flash holes were clean, no burrs.
Loaded case, in checking I found primer flush with bottom of case.
Removed fire pin, check no excessive lube.

Results of check I believe the problem was my seating of the primers were not deep enough and In fact the firing pin was pushing primer in and this what caused lite hit.

Have loaded up more for test, seated below case at .005 and found problem went away at the range today.

Again thank you for the help.

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