Primers: Std. vs. Magnum

thwatson2

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 4, 2012
Messages
188
Location
Charleston County, SC
I use federal 215 mag primers in all my rifles that accept large size primer. After much “personal” review And shooting, I found these to be most consistent. Magnum primers have a greater amount of material so burn is stronger and longer. This doesn’t necessarily equate to huge jumps in velocity or pressure, the amount of powder is ruling that action. All powders react differently so do your own study. On the other hand, large rifle and large rifle primers are not necessarily interchangeable. The cup is thicker on rifle and can protrude out of pistol, or pistol primer can seat to deep in rifle cartridge. Both situations are not conducive to consistent shooting.
 

Patton243

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 12, 2016
Messages
251
I use 450s in my 223, 6x47, 6.5 Creed and 6mm Creed with good results. Never wasted my time with anything else for small primer.
 

TXAoudadKlr

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 10, 2013
Messages
1,581
Location
Houston,TX
I use Fed-215’s in my 6.5CM and VVN 540. Outstanding accuracy. I don’t know the velocity or ES but I don’t care as this is a 300 and in load with the 117gr sledge hammers
 

rdsii64

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 11, 2008
Messages
412
Location
Jacksonville NC
When I started loading my own ammo, the only rifles I had were AR's. As a result, I only use CCI #41 and #34 primers. When I started loading for bolt action rifles, I never bothered to try another primer. I don't know how much difference switching primers for my bolt guns would have made. What I do know is my bolt guns are shooting well enough that I never bothered to go down that rabbit hole.
 

jgs8163

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Joined
Sep 27, 2011
Messages
685
Location
Southern Arizona
I use in my 6.5x47, CCI 450, h4350, Lapua Brass and 140 Bergers with great results. Shoots bug holes. Start low and work up. I plan on trying some RL26 one of these days.
 
Last edited:

243winxb

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 9, 2016
Messages
393
Location
USA
According to my read of the article there may be differences that affect pressure . . . what am I missing?
yes pressures can be higher or lower when any component is changed from the printed load data. Start low & work up as always.
Ball powders may be harder to start burning & require a mag primer.
We tested loads at both maximum normal pressures and at the starting loads (some labs calculate start loads — we shot them). Standard primers caused no ignition issues at the max load but posted higher extreme variations in pressure and velocity in the lower pressure regimes of the start loads. In extreme cases, the start loads produced short delayed firings— probably in the range of 20 to 40 milliseconds but detectible to an experienced ballistician. Switching that propellant to a Magnum primer smoothed out the performance across the useful range of charge weights and completely eliminated the delays.
If I've recommended a Magnum primer in reloading data I've developed, it's because my lab results show it's needed.
Large capacity rifle cases, cold weather & ball power should benefit from magnum primers.

When it comes to 400 & 450, go with the 450 for the thicker cup. Or use Remington 7 1/2 primers.
 
Last edited:

GLTaylor

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Joined
Oct 11, 2019
Messages
509
Location
Cedar Bluff, Al
I read a study a long time ago that compared primers. They rated them based upon their "brisance" (i believe that was the term). Basically it measured the amount, length and intensity of the spark produced by each. Magnums supposedly produced more and hotter "spark", supposedly better for igniting larger/denser powder charges?
I only have 2 observations from my personal testing. In my 338 Sherman with 62 grs of Varget I pressured out too early with mag primers. Switched to Fed 210 and gained another 2 grs of powder, good velocity and speed with 213gr Hammers.
Second test was with my 6.5 CM and small primer pockets. CCI SRP were erratic. Went to 450s and found good stability, good speed and lower SD and ES. Guess it depends on the rifle!
 

rborensr

New Member
Joined
Jan 2, 2012
Messages
2
Location
Northwest Montana
In SR primers there is no difference other than cup thickness.
Absolutely misleading, there is a difference in the mix and you do not want to interchange, stick with the recipe, the reason for the thicker cup is because of the higher pressure produced by the magnum primer mix. I just got off of the phone with cci to confirm this. So please don't hesitate to call the manufacturer to get the real answer.
 

Patton243

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 12, 2016
Messages
251
Absolutely misleading, there is a difference in the mix and you do not want to interchange, stick with the recipe, the reason for the thicker cup is because of the higher pressure produced by the magnum primer mix. I just got off of the phone with cci to confirm this. So please don't hesitate to call the manufacturer to get the real answer.
You should call CCI and tell them their 17 HMR ammo these days is garbage too. I bought 5 boxes of A17 ammo and 1/10 per box are misfires out of my Savage rifle.

I do like their 450 primers though to touch on what you said to some extent.
 

Randy Tidwell

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 14, 2019
Messages
331
Location
Long Beach, CA
I have 3 6dashers (2 rifles & a XP). I find accuracy with the 205 or 205M to be much more consistent. But, all three rigs will blank primers with either 205 2-3 times out of 50.

Switched to the 405, was never able to find a consistent load.

Finally ended up with Wolf primers, never looked back.

Shots the same load as the 205s, has never blanked a primer. Very happy with them!
 

rborensr

New Member
Joined
Jan 2, 2012
Messages
2
Location
Northwest Montana
Looking for information in regard to using standard (CCI # 400) vs. magnum (CCI # 450) small rifle primers for Lapua 6.5 x 47MM. Please feel free to weigh in on .223 also. Someone said magnum primers work well for .223 and I don't know how much to trust that info. I'm sure it has been addressed, but I'm having difficulty finding data on how much this will affect load pressure. Pretty new at reloading for rifle and appreciate all of the expertise that's available through LRH. Thank you.
 

JC in Calif

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 1, 2007
Messages
72
Looking for information in regard to using standard (CCI # 400) vs. magnum (CCI # 450) small rifle primers for Lapua 6.5 x 47MM. Please feel free to weigh in on .223 also. Someone said magnum primers work well for .223 and I don't know how much to trust that info. I'm sure it has been addressed, but I'm having difficulty finding data on how much this will affect load pressure. Pretty new at reloading for rifle and appreciate all of the expertise that's available through LRH. Thank you.
Try them both! See if one gives you the results you are looking for. I had some good results using SRM’s in my 30BR, although they certainly aren’t called for.
 

montana west

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 10, 2020
Messages
291
Location
stryker montana
primer selection is easy. ball powder magnum primers--stick powder like varget and all the others with this burning rate regular primers.. and to be honest in testing primers on chonographs the primer make very little difference. if it below 0 temp then a magnum primer will help. in my 44magnum rifle I use large rifle magnum primers with 296-110 powder with heavy bullets . and with all centerfire rifle above and including 338 I use 215 fed primers with reloader15 powder. at one time winchester did no make magnum primers why, because all their primers were mangum.
 

Starlite

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 8, 2019
Messages
248
Location
New Brunswick Canada
This has been an awesome discussion. I’ve learned so many different things WRT primers today (and I thought I’d learned everything thru my readings and testing). One thing that I and others have come to realize is that unless you test. Test. Test and then test some more you’ll never really know what will meet your expectations; and satisfy your particular needs. That’s really y-i test so many different combinations. I, like many of you am chasing that unicorn of a load.
If I were to make one macro statement about primers it would be this:
1.Generally within the same brands; magnum primers Will increase velocity ~ 50FPS over non magnum primers.
2. Federal primers are more reliable to ignite on first strike.
3. CCI BR2/4 seem to be most consistent lot to lot.
4. Don’t bottom out Remington primers (mainly 6-1/2 & 9-1/2) in the Primer pocket unless your using a stronger after market firing pin spring. In my experience you’ll have an increase in misfires. Especially with federal brass.
Finally I’ll offer my opinion. Only load magnum primers for hunting. Winchester for LRP and CCI 450 for SRP. I use these because they can be seated deep; bottomed out while still allowing for good consistent strikes.
just my 2c.
One last point. My results are primarily from a Sako finnlight 6.5CM. A bergara B-14 HMR In 6.5CM. A Savage axis .223Rem A Remington 700 VLS .223rem. A Savage axis in .308win and A Savage axis II .270win
 
Top