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Old September 11, 2012, 01:08 PM   #1
Jonzeey02
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which is safer

I been doing some research online about which reloading kit i want to get and i want to either get a lee breech lock kit or the lee anniversary kit. I know one difference is on the breech lock kit you prime off the press and with the anniversary kit you prime on the press. My question is which way i the safest way to prime on the press or off ? Being a newbie i just want to be safe rather than sorry and the primers are the only thing making me a little nervous about reloading. Any of you guys use these kits and if so is there on better than the other? As always thanks for the imput.
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Old September 11, 2012, 01:13 PM   #2
Woody55
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I don't have either of the Lee presses. However, the RCBS press I have let's you prime on the press.

I have tried it on a few rounds, but I found it easier to use a seperate tool - it was faster for me. I don't think either method is safer than the other.
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Old September 11, 2012, 01:37 PM   #3
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The Lee tools are the same as RCBS in that regard: the manual priming tool is faster and is what I prefer, too. Lee has a tool called a Safety Prime that you can fit on a press in place of a cartridge case to prime on the press, but I don't see any safety advantage. You still need to wear your glasses and hearing protection just in case one should go off (almost never). And, again, it's slower.
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Old September 11, 2012, 01:51 PM   #4
Jonzeey02
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Ok cool. thanks guys.
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Old September 11, 2012, 03:32 PM   #5
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I got a flyer from Cabelas today and I believe I saw the Lee Breach Lock Kit on sale from the 13th through the 17th.
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Old September 11, 2012, 03:41 PM   #6
jwrowland77
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I've always primed with a hand tool. I like priming with a hand tool, that way I can feel how the primer goes in...whether its tough to put primer in or if the primer pocket is too loose. If its too loose then I mark the case head with a sharpie letting me know that's the last reload for that case.
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Old September 11, 2012, 10:38 PM   #7
Lost Sheep
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Thanks for asking our advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jonzeey02
which is safer
I been doing some research online about which reloading kit i want to get and i want to either get a lee breech lock kit or the lee anniversary kit. I know one difference is on the breech lock kit you prime off the press and with the anniversary kit you prime on the press. My question is which way i the safest way to prime on the press or off ? Being a newbie i just want to be safe rather than sorry and the primers are the only thing making me a little nervous about reloading. Any of you guys use these kits and if so is there on better than the other? As always thanks for the imput.
I believe you are starting from an incorrect premise.

You can prime on-press with either press.

If you give us the part numbers of the exact presses you are comparing, I could tell for sure.

There are three ways to prime.

1) A hand primer (off-press)
2) A die for priming (is screws into the press just like a sizing die, but holds the case above the press while you seat the primer from below with a primer cup that sits on the ram where the shell holder usually goes. This is probably the least used method of priming.

edit: Thanks to noylj for reminding me of the name of the device I described above, "Ram Prime". I believe other makers must produce them also, but here is Lee's:
http://www.midwayusa.com/product/728...le-stage-press


3) Priming on-press with the priming arm that inserts into a slot in the ram. With Lee's Safety-Prime, this is very nearly as safe as the hand primer.

If you use method 3), priming on-press, but without the safely prime primer dispenser, you have absolutely no chance of a chain detonation of primers (which is remote enough anyway). The drawback is that you pick up each primer manually and put them one by one in the primer seating cup on the press.

Good luck.

Lost Sheep

Last edited by Lost Sheep; September 12, 2012 at 03:19 PM.
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Old September 11, 2012, 10:59 PM   #8
Jonzeey02
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bullets

So im reading the load data on 45 acp and was wondering if a load calls for a 185 gr hornaday fmj can i keep the same load but instead of a 185 gr could i use a 200 gr as long as i keep the same bullet manufacture? thanks.
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Old September 12, 2012, 10:00 AM   #9
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Jonzeey02 asked
Quote:
So im reading the load data on 45 acp and was wondering if a load calls for a 185 gr hornaday fmj can i keep the same load but instead of a 185 gr could i use a 200 gr as long as i keep the same bullet manufacture? thanks.
NO! By using a heavier bullet, you would be creating more pressure, if it where the other way around, ie; load recipe for 200 gr bullet and you wanted to switch to a 15gr lighter, you'd get less pressure, running the chance of a squibe load.
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Old September 12, 2012, 12:09 PM   #10
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Quote:
So im reading the load data on 45 acp and was wondering if a load calls for a 185 gr hornaday fmj can i keep the same load but instead of a 185 gr could i use a 200 gr as long as i keep the same bullet manufacture? thanks.
I second what elk said above, and would add that step 1 really should be the purchase of one or two good reloading manuals (Lyman 49, Lee Modern Reloading 2nd edition, etc) which you thoroughly read cover to cover, and then read again. This is easily the most important step in the process of becoming a reloader, in my opinion.

Bullet weight and bullet composition (lead, jacketed, plated) are what matter, not manufacturer. Components are never interchangeable in a load recipe. When you change any component you must back the load down to a safe starting load and work it back up.
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Old September 12, 2012, 01:07 PM   #11
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READ A RELOADING MANUAL, PLEASE. Does it really make sense that a HEAVIER bullet could use the same charge weight? Why not replace the 185gn with a 500gn? It is the same thing.
If you have no data for a given bullet weight, you can use the loading data for the next heavier bullet weight as a starting point.

Primer safety: If safety is your concern, then you do not want any system that involves multiple primers near the priming station.
For this, the SAFEST would be a Lee Ram Prime where you manually place each individual primer in position to be primed and there is no way to have a bunch of primers go off at once.
However, if productivitiy is important, you have to see that most (all?) primer explosions are caused by operator error.
Since primer explosions are very rare and most probably are not willing to explain their fault in the explosion, there is no way for us to know what is safest any more than you can.
Don't play with primers and keep equipment clean and in proper working order and DON'T FORCE ANYTHING while reloading.

Last edited by noylj; September 12, 2012 at 01:10 PM. Reason: Discovered the question about bullet weight
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Old September 12, 2012, 01:32 PM   #12
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Quote:
Bullet weight and bullet composition (lead, jacketed, plated) are what matter, not manufacturer. Components are never interchangeable in a load recipe. When you change any component you must back the load down to a safe starting load and work it back up.
Yes indeedy - granted you may end up close to the powder charge you were originally using, but the steps for working up from the starting load must be repeated every time a component is switched.

As others have said, look into a reloading manual - if you cannot afford one, check your local library. I have made it a point to buy several manuals for the one I work at.

As to primers, I use a Lee hand tool - to me it is faster as I do everything in stages and additionally, as I am applying the force to seat it by hand rather than vast amounts of leverage via a large handle I can get a better feel for something being "off"
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Old September 12, 2012, 03:16 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stressfire
As others have said, look into a reloading manual - if you cannot afford one, check your local library. I have made it a point to buy several manuals for the one I work at.
And if your library doesn't have one, go to your powder manufacturer's web site and download loading data from there. Also the bullet manufacturer's web site may have load data.

And get loading manuals, not just for the load data, but for the loading procedures described in the chapters before the load data.

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Old September 12, 2012, 08:21 PM   #14
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"My question is which way i the safest way to prime on the press or off ? Being a newbie i just want to be safe rather than sorry "

That's not an issue, priming is not hazardous.
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Old September 12, 2012, 10:24 PM   #15
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Op prime either way, both are just as safe. No matter wich one you choose there will be loose primers in the tray.

When I started reloading I used the press primer (Lee) and had no issues, I even was able to "feel" the primer the way I did it.

Today I prime off the press, not for feel or safety reasons, but for me it speeds up the process for my reloading.

Find the method that works for you!
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Old September 13, 2012, 09:31 AM   #16
stnosc
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Quote:
That's not an issue, priming is not hazardous.
This guy might have something to say about that statement:



and then there's this guy:



and finally this guy:




Newbee to this forum, but not a newbee to reloading.
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Old September 13, 2012, 11:07 AM   #17
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None of the equipment the OP is considering uses primer tubes, but as I advised, you wear your safety glasses and hearing protection anyway. Even the primer tube accidents, rare as they are, are normally avoidable if you just run a cleaning patch through them every few thousand primers or so to clear the dust out. There is a whole separate thread on this if you look for it.
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Old September 13, 2012, 09:14 PM   #18
wncchester
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"This guy might have something to say about that statement:"

Welcome to the Firing Line.

As Nick suggests, note that I didn't say a thing about auto-primer feed tubes. Those are interesting photos to people who may not have seen them but the question was priming on or off the press; we gotta pay attention to all them words or we may jump to some conclusion that's off the point!

Last edited by wncchester; September 13, 2012 at 09:21 PM.
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Old September 14, 2012, 07:41 AM   #19
stnosc
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wncchester
As Nick suggests, note that I didn't say a thing about auto-primer feed tubes.
You're correct you didn't. Your blanket statement that "priming is not hazardous" had nothing to do with priming on or off the press, either. Apparently, you didn't mean "all" priming.
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Old September 14, 2012, 09:13 PM   #20
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"Apparently, you didn't mean "all" priming. "

I didn't. But, if I follow your logic correctly, perhaps I should have included a qualifier that primers shouldn't be tapped in with a hammer either?
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Old September 14, 2012, 09:26 PM   #21
noylj
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Priming on or off the press seems to be safe.
Improperly using a primer tube and not inspecting it is unsafe.
The main thing is once you get a primer to the primer punch, it is not going to set off a bunch of other primers (located at least 6" away) and will, unless someone gets creative, do no more than get crushed if the loader isn't careful. Any danger, at the primer punch location, has nothing to do with press or bench unit or hand primer and everything to do with forcing things.
Rule of Reloading: Don't force anything. Fix the problem.
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