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Old November 16, 2002, 03:48 PM   #1
vulcan
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In Die explosion

Hi, I was wondering if there are any documented cases of an in die explosion while handloading? Is it possible for a charged/primed case to explode while seating or crimping? Just wondering, I like to be scared cautious. Thanks! I'm so careful, I don't even put more than 20 primers at a time in the lee auto prime. I still remember what a unexpected primer detonation sounded like when using the lee loader!
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Old November 16, 2002, 05:18 PM   #2
KP95DAO
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Over 32 years doing this and I have never seen or even heard of such a thing.

One should ALWAYS wear eye protection while dealing with elements that burn or detonate.
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Old November 16, 2002, 08:08 PM   #3
Mike Irwin
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I know a man who was almost killed some years ago when the primer tube on his press detonated.

I've never heard of an in-die explosion, but I suppose it could happen.

I don't want to make any bets on what damage would occur.
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Old November 16, 2002, 08:16 PM   #4
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Yea, one of those primers going off will certainly jump-start the old heart. Better than CPR and electric shock combined.
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Old November 16, 2002, 11:34 PM   #5
C.R.Sam
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I have lost a few when decapping live military mercuric primers on Pacific C press. Little bitty high speed bits and pieces. Glasses always.

Have also had em go off when gettin smacked by the high speed turbine blades of Oreck vacuum cleaners. Two Orecks went to handloader heaven. I don't buy the noisy critters, wives do. Primer pop throws the little turbine out of ballance and you have an in house earthquake on a string. Pull lektrical string out of wall and they flop around for a while and die.

Sam
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Old November 16, 2002, 11:45 PM   #6
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Not yet.
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Old November 16, 2002, 11:50 PM   #7
Mike Irwin
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Jesus Christ, Sam, that's what shop vacs are for!
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Old November 17, 2002, 12:52 AM   #8
Chemistry
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If something did go BOOM in a die, I would imagine that it wouldn't be nearly as disasterous as one would think.

Dies are not hermetically sealed, and I would think that the blast would go out the ends of the dies, propelling the cartridge out of the die, one way or the other. Dies are made out of pretty tough steels, and should be able to handle the explosion...

Thankfully, since this hasn't happened to any of us here (knock on wood), or to anyone we know, I hope my theory is never proven.
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Old November 17, 2002, 02:28 AM   #9
vulcan
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Thanks for the input. Its been raining all day here so I just been reloading to pass the time when the thought popped into my head about the laws of averages & probability catching up with someone. I see that someones been loading for 32yrs without a problem. I'm very careful when priming & wear eye protection/gloves. I put a old rug around under the loading area as someone suggested in another post to keep dropped primers from bouncing around, I'm worried that one of my cats would chew or eat a live primer with disasterous results. I just finished processing & loading 1,500 9mm rds & discovered another hazard, 2 bisters on my hand from operating the single stage press. I think my limit is 1,000 per session

Thanks C.R.Sam ! I didn't think about the vacuum cleaner angle, I better get a cheap dustbuster instead of using the wife's phantom.
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Old November 18, 2002, 11:21 AM   #10
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I load using blocks, and a few years ago I got VERY stupid one day. Took a .223 case from what I thought was my "needs to be sized" block, and ran it into my sizer. I thought it was a little sticky, and that I hadn't hit it right with the spray lube...

When it came out, all these little black granules went all over the place. I'd FL sized, including pressing the primer out, a case with a max charge of AA2200 in it. And it didn't go off.
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Old November 18, 2002, 02:31 PM   #11
C.R.Sam
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Vacuums...
The ones that suck through the dust bag are boring...no explosions.
The ones that pull the stuff through the fan and push it into the bag will often pop primers.

Mike...wife types aren't into shop vacs.
Both Oreck disassemblys were due to wife types tryin to neaten things up.

Carpet cleaning should always be done first with large speaker magnet. Often get enough springs, screws etc to overhaul nuther gun. Magnet doesn't get primers so I either ignore em or use tank type vacuum after magnet drag.

Sam
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Old November 18, 2002, 02:51 PM   #12
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Sam, with all due respect, you really need to replace that 60s shag carpeting.
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Old November 18, 2002, 10:22 PM   #13
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THANKS Bogie, The stay alert guage is back to full! Just reading that gave me the willies!
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Old November 18, 2002, 11:48 PM   #14
Mike Irwin
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I'd say the severity would depend on what stage of the process you're in, and how far into the die the shell is when it lights up.

I'd not bet on the die blowing out from the top, depending on the make and the station.

If you were seating the bullet, things would be a lot worse. I'd imagine that at the very least you'd catch a lot of brass and powder fragments, and the press ram would be blown down pretty forcefully.
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