Do Primers Go Bad

Mustang72

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2019
Messages
411
Location
Texas
I have a bad batch of cci. Thought it was just do to poor storage. High humidity,no temp control and box had gotten wet at some point. Now I am wondering if it was just a bad batch. Never had any other problems and still shooting some that are 20+ years old.
 

Kmccord

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 30, 2016
Messages
595
Location
Reilly Springs, TX
I have CCI Pistol primers purchased in 1992, they work no issues, I have some CCI 250 primers purchased in 1999 still using those, almost done with that brick and no misfire. They cannot make a primer with a shelf life, could you imagine the lawsuit they could face if primers had a shelf life of five years?? All police force, military etc, would have to move out ammo every two years due to a shelf life..
 

Oldschool280

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 22, 2016
Messages
551
I have CCI Pistol primers purchased in 1992, they work no issues, I have some CCI 250 primers purchased in 1999 still using those, almost done with that brick and no misfire. They cannot make a primer with a shelf life, could you imagine the lawsuit they could face if primers had a shelf life of five years?? All police force, military etc, would have to move out ammo every two years due to a shelf life..
Loaded ammo is a different animal.
 

SealTeam4

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2016
Messages
777
Explosive detonators do not have a shelf life and are not sensitive to temperature. As long as you keep them dry they should fire. Sounds like a possible bad batch. Happens more than we probably know!
 

[email protected]

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2019
Messages
191
Location
San Antonio Valley CA
I have a dedicated "hobby shop" upstairs in my shop. It's just me and my dog, quiet and no distractions. I load one batch at a time, one step at a time. Decap all the casings. Clean them all, size them all, trim them all, prime them etc. Could I screw one up? It's doubtful but possible. I had 4 or 5 bad loads from 2 different loading sessions. I usually load 20 to 50 at a time. The only common denominator is me and the primers that all came from the same box of 1000.
When I first started loading I dented a few primers but they fired fine. With this many no fire and hang fire loads in 2 different loading sessions, I don't know what to think.
 

Mustang72

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2019
Messages
411
Location
Texas
Use a different batch of primers. If your problem goes away then you will know. I have been reloading around 30 years and might have had a couple of misfires but don't remember any until that one particular batch.
 

[email protected]

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2019
Messages
191
Location
San Antonio Valley CA
I have some coming. I hope it's bad primers. I'm starting to doubt my procedure, but can't figure where I went wrong. Another buddy of mine is going to look over my shoulder so to speak when i load some more rounds.
 

mpayne

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 26, 2012
Messages
311
Location
Eastern Washington State
I have some primers my dad left to me with the rest of his reloading stuff I bet some of them are from the 70's now and them I load with the with no problems.
 

trhall

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Joined
Aug 10, 2010
Messages
184
Location
Utah
I was out shooting some reloads yesterday in a 6.5 CM comparing them to some factory loads. I had a couple hang fires and a couple no fire in the reloads. There's plenty of primer/pin contact and no issues with the factory loads. All I can figure is that the primers are too old?
If primers are stored in a cool dry environment they will not go "bad". I've used primers that were over 20 years old but had been stored with powder in cool, dry conditions with no issues.
 

LittleMike

Member
Joined
Mar 10, 2018
Messages
16
Location
Western NY
My experience is it's pretty hard to kill primers. I sonic cleaned 30-06 cases a few years back with 40 that were primed, I dried them out for a few days, fired two or three cases worked fine, loaded them and all fired in my savage, I recall they were WLR's.
 

cetacea

Active Member
Joined
Mar 10, 2008
Messages
28
Location
Ellijay, GA
My hand loads for the 2017 and 2018 season where from the last I had from a brick from 2007. My next hand loads will be from a brick from 2012. When I buy primers I always write the date that I purchased them. I always use the older primers first as I rotate my stock. I have yet to experience a misfire. (knock on wood) I use the rcbs bench priming tool. I have a son in law that was told primers are made so that they deteriorate in a couple of years. He did not know what to say when I showed him that his loads where made from primers I had from 2007 last year. I told him that whom ever told him that was full of bs.
A few yrs ago one of the nutcase senators from CA tried to pass a gun law that included a 2-3 year primer life span. Of course it didn't pass.
 

Wraith Hunter

Member
Joined
Sep 25, 2018
Messages
21
Location
Colorado
I was out shooting some reloads yesterday in a 6.5 CM comparing them to some factory loads. I had a couple hang fires and a couple no fire in the reloads. There's plenty of primer/pin contact and no issues with the factory loads. All I can figure is that the primers are too old?
Primers do not tend to go "bad" unless they are exposed to lubricants or excessive moisture. Because you had Hang fires, is it possible the primers were not fully seated in the cartridge? When primers are not seated deep enough in the pocket the energy of the firing pin can be used to move the primer and not deform it enough to cause ignition.

I have seen instances where loaded primers were useless after reloading when shooters used a lot of WD-40 etc to clean/lube loaded cartridges.
 

Cash Is King

Active Member
Joined
Apr 25, 2014
Messages
25
Location
Virginia
Long story short... I had a similar *** moment years ago... thought it was the same thing...

Primers were hit well, but failed. Two in a row. Deer hunting. .300 WM Sendero.

Thinking MAYBE the firing pin spring might be bad or gunked up (got the gun used). I disassembled the bolt and checked everything. Looked fine... reassembled. Then, just for giggles I did it twice more... on the third reassembly I heard (never saw) my problem... a tiny grit of sand was between the firing head and the bolt plug (heard a gritty sound). This was slowing down the firing pin JUST ENOUGH to fail ignition.

I know... very weird, but just figured I would share.

Weapon has never failed since.
 

Trending threads

Top