How to deprime live primers?

SmallHoles

Member
Joined
Jan 8, 2014
Messages
17
Just use your press. I've done this with thousands of rounds with no issues. The cases of folks setting off primers are from priming, where the primary interface with the primer is on the bottom and it's meant to go off from there. Just make sure you don't try and re-use the primers after they've been removed....no matter how much you paid for them. Ask me how I know.
Ok... how do you know? I've reused primers I removed for years without incident.
 

5gauss

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 13, 2018
Messages
153
Location
Oregon
If you are slow and careful, just use deprime die...safest is to fire them in the rifle/pistol and then remove....your call. You want some excitement...deprime live...
 

milo-2

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Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
1,045
Location
Gillette, Wy
Primers require impact to fire, just push them out and they will not fire. If one did fire upon removal it would just blow it out of the pocket...
I wouldn't be so nonchalant about a primer breaking free, they exit with force and can and have penetrated clothing into flesh.
 

Clark

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Joined
Oct 19, 2006
Messages
746
When my brother was a teen ager, he went out with a girl who had scars on her face from decapping her father's live primers. The primers landed in a jar where one set off the rest. She said the every once in a while an anvil would work its way to the surface of her skin.
In the 42 years since I heard that story, I have taken up handloading 20 years ago.
15 years ago I got two co-ax presses.
The primer catching jar on a co-ax press looks like the one in the 42 year old story.
 

Pointman

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Joined
Aug 12, 2017
Messages
90
I just recently deprimed a bunch of live SR primers with my decapping die. Wore safety glasses and went slow and smooth. None detonated, but even if one did I dont think it would have been a big deal.

I would advise against doing it with your sizing die however because there would be nowhere for the pressure to escape if one did go off.
I agree the keys are safety glasses and SLOW & STEADY! I drop them into a bottle of old crankcase oil. I dispose of them after they've soaked for a time.
 

hart

Member
Joined
Jul 13, 2006
Messages
8
Would be interesting to know if anyone has had one go off. My guess it would "shoot" itself downward/away from the pocket with only a minimal amount of the pressure escaping through the flashhole.
A sizing die most likely would protect the user from upwards gasses. But the violent projectile action of the primer could be lethal to any dog or cat under the press. My press is located off to the side of where I sit, but it makes me think twice about working in stocking feet.
When we were kids we removed shotgun primers from shotshells with a nail...they didn't go off...but we then hit them with hammers on the sidewalk....did a few before a piece of shrapnel went completely though my cheek and I picked it out with my tongue.
I've done lots with a regular sizing die and none have ever gone off while de-priming. Just do it gently and slowly.
One primer has gone off that I had lost on the concrete floor. I stepped on it and it went off. The concrete has a rough surface and primer was probably face down and a twisting action of my shoe is probably what set it off. It only made a muffled pop, didn't feel a thing. If I had been wearing socks it probably wouldn't have gone off.
 

hart

Member
Joined
Jul 13, 2006
Messages
8
I too use my press but I use a single stage press and there is no powder or primers near when I de-prime. Never had one go off. You should were safety glasses and ear protection when doing this! Also, the primmer is made to be hit from the flat side or rear of the primer. This is probably why there is not much chance of it going off when pushed out from the inside. Just my opinion!
Not quite right. The primer fires from impact of the primer pellet situated between the cup and the anvil of the primer. It doesn't matter which side is impacted.
No impact, just a gentle push should be good.
 

browndcm

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Joined
Dec 30, 2012
Messages
156
what is the best commercial deprimer tool to use after bullet and powder removed. Most I’ve seen state use for deadprimers. Is there a tool for safe live primer removal?
I aiways removed bullet and powder and dropped the brass and ptimer in water for 5 mins
Then deprimed and never had a problem
Or fire them off
Both worked for me
 

Barstooler

Member
Joined
Jun 14, 2005
Messages
11
Location
Colorado Springs
I decapped live primers for 50 years using sizing die and press, never had any problems then about 5 years ago I was decapping some military brass that had crimped primers. Doing the “slow and easy” method to not jolt the primer, but on the third case it went bang. Scared the heck out of me

I still deprime using press and die, but if they are military brass with crimp I fire them off in rifle

Barstooler
 

Wraith Hunter

Member
Joined
Sep 25, 2018
Messages
21
Location
Colorado
what is the best commercial deprimer tool to use after bullet and powder removed. Most I’ve seen state use for deadprimers. Is there a tool for safe live primer removal?
I use the primer extractor pin for my reloading press. In my case, the deprimer pin is on the same tool as the case neck expander. So I use a tool for a smaller caliber. For instance, in the rare instance where I wish to deprime a 300 Wby Mag case. I use the tool from a 7MM wby to remove the primer without expanding the case neck. This tends to prevent case neck stress.

Of course I measure the internal neck diameter and resize, if needed, before inserting a new bullet.
 

epags

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Joined
Mar 7, 2018
Messages
98
Location
Oxnard, CA
FWIF. Depriming by firing the round in your rifle:
1. If you live in the city (me), the neighbors will be annoyed and may call the police. Don't ask!:-(
2. Regardless where you do it, the barrel gets really dirty. Be sure to use a snake to remove the primer residue before you try for any accuracy.
 

Wraith Hunter

Member
Joined
Sep 25, 2018
Messages
21
Location
Colorado
I decapped live primers for 50 years using sizing die and press, never had any problems then about 5 years ago I was decapping some military brass that had crimped primers. Doing the “slow and easy” method to not jolt the primer, but on the third case it went bang. Scared the heck out of me

I still deprime using press and die, but if they are military brass with crimp I fire them off in rifle

Barstooler
BTW, WD-40, sprayed into a primer will render a primer inert, usually in a few seconds.
 

johnnyu799

Member
Joined
Sep 25, 2016
Messages
16
if oil from your hand can stop a primer from firing and you don't want to scare the garbage man. Take all live primers you de-primed and put oil on them ....old motor oil that's what I do. Just to be on the safe side.
 
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