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Reloading Berger Bullets


Primers, much Difference?

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Unread 07-28-2013, 06:25 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 411
Re: Primers, much Difference?

The difference in primers will show up most noticible with small powder capacity cartridges like the 22 Hornet or 221 Fireball.

I have been experimenting/loading for my 25-06 since 1998 when I bought it new. The -06 case is a large powder capacity case for the small bore (25 cal) and your primary concern should be getting good ignition of the large powder column from your primer, especially in cold temperatures. The most influential variable in the equation is the powder itself, not the primer. H4831SC is in the Extreme family of powders and is very insensitive to temperature variations (good choice). Primers can vary significantly in brisciance (hottness) when full scale comparisons are made (small, large and magnum primers) but large rifle primers are not too different one manufacturer to the other. I ended up migrating to magnum primers for the 25-06 and use the same primer for my 7mm Rem Mag as I do the 25-06.

Use what you have on hand.
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Unread 07-28-2013, 10:08 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: S.E. Michigan
Posts: 4,120
Re: Primers, much Difference?

Well, again, I go right by the book. In the case of 223's, they load with Hornady pills and the Hornady book specifies CCI so thats what it is. I have a pile of SR primers BTW.

Everything else gets Sierra and Sierra specifies Federal so it's Federal. Got a bunch in all flavors but can always use more.

The blackpowder rifle is a CVA Accura V2 tricked (by me and not cabbaged up btw). Thats the one where I learned first hand about primer tolerances. I settled on CCI 209 shotgun shell primers and I bought a thousand so I'm in the same lot and dimensions all the time. I don't ever anticipate sending close to a thousand saboted pills down the tube in my lifetime.

On an inline like the CVA, it's quite possible to slam fire the rifle if you shim the firing pin retainer (which I did to negate blowback from the breechplug recess). You actually set the retainer so it 'wipes' the face of the primer when you close the action. The wiped area seals the primer against the retainer, but the fit is so close, just changing primer brands or lots can cause the primer to ignite when you don't want it to, like you load the tube, drop in a primer, close the action and blow your foot off. Not a good thing.
'It's not about me, it's about we'..........
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Unread 07-29-2013, 08:21 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 1,494
Re: Primers, much Difference?

Primers do make a difference. In my Custom Rem 700 Shilen barrel 25-06 I could not get it to shoot like I wanted it to with either of my favorite deer hunting loads until I started switching primers. CCI 250s did the trick. Went from shooting 1/2" groups down to bug holes. The load that my rifle loves is 117 gr Sierra Pro Hunter, Rem. case, CCI 250, 49 grs IMR or AA 4350, 3000 fps.

I have had great accuracy with all the primer makes with different loads in different calibers. Bought a bunch of Wolf primers and they do really well. That is once I learned how to seat them. You really have to apply more pressure to make sure they are seated fully and compress the anvil. If you don't you will have misfire issues.

The CCI BR primers are usually the first ones that I try. I have had best overall accuracy with them.
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