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Old November 12, 2012, 10:26 PM   #1
Jimro
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Tight Winchester Pockets?

The backstory.

I was using Tula Large Rifle Magnum primers in 6.5x55 Swede (win brass) and 30-06 (federal brass) and seating primers was...difficult. I assumed that this was due to the Russian primers.

Today I bought the new Lee XR hand prime tool (love the square primer feed tray, totally awesome) and decided to prep a brand new bag of 308 Winchester (Win brass) with Fed GMM large rifle primers (not my usual brand, they were given to me by a friend and I'm fresh out of BR-2s).

Oh Sweet Shivering Shiva Sorting Sandy Shells on the Seashore, those primers did NOT want to go in. So either Fed GMM is a tad oversized (like I assume the Tula LRM primers are) or Win primer pockets were a tad undersized.

Anyone else run into primer seating issues with Winchester brand brass? I've been using it for years, but didn't start reloading 6.5x55 until this year, and this is my first fresh bag of 308 in a long while, so has anyone notice this phenomena with primer seating?

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Old November 12, 2012, 10:45 PM   #2
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Jimro,

Not normally the case (pun intended). I've seen somewhat tight new unprimed Lake City Match and some really tight IMI match, but never Winchester. That's a surprise. And Federal primers are what I went to back when CCI still made tight fitting primers (1980's) because they didn't exhibit that problem. The Tula primers I have are indeed tougher to seat (about like 1980's CCI), and I've taken to running even uncrimped primer pockets through my Dillon swager before using them.

The only large rifle primer pocket spec I have is one from Remington. They speck the diameter as 0.2090" ±0.0004" wide, and they note 80 lb to 100 lb seating force is required with a Remington primer. Their primer for it had a diameter of 0.2100" +0.0005", the press fit interference is supposed to be no less than 0.0006" and not more than 0.0019". See if you can "slug" the pocket by tapping some lead into it, then mic the impression. You can also mic the OD of your primers. That will tel you if you got some tight brass or fat primers (though note that primer can be eccentric; you want the average of the narrowest and widest place to be inside the spec).

I have seen a couple of complaints about Winchester brass in the recent past and wondered if their move from Alton, IL to Oxford, MS had something to do with it.
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Last edited by Unclenick; November 13, 2012 at 01:44 PM. Reason: put in missing zero
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Old November 12, 2012, 11:30 PM   #3
Jimro
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I've held of buying a mic set this long, guess it is finally time to make like my old man and get a set.

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Old November 13, 2012, 04:11 PM   #4
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Likewise on the Lake City brass, but I have easy results with Winchester brass, in every caliber I shoot.
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Old November 19, 2012, 10:05 PM   #5
Jimro
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I went to Harbor Freight and bought a 1" micrometer, the Fed GMM primers mic'd to spec. 0.2111.

I then pounded some scrap lead (recovered 22 rimfire bullet) into the primer pocket of a bag fresh 6.5x55 Swede casing, and it mic'd slightly larger, 0.2150. I may have enlarged that number a tad by pushing the lead back out of the primer pocket with a universal depriming die.

I then took the primer I measured and used the Lee hand seating tool to seat it, and it went in with what I would call "normal" resistance. About the same as a CCI 200 or BR2.

Unfortunately I had already primed all 50 of the new 308 Brass (which is why I had to open the bag of 6.5)

So I guess if you encounter Winchester brass with tight primer pockets it might not just be me.

Jimro
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Old November 20, 2012, 07:17 PM   #6
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Interesting that the primer pocket mic'd so big. Are you sure it was .2150" and not .2105"? I'm not sure what caused that level of reading error, but it couldn't have been anywhere near .0045" oversize or the primer would have fallen out.
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Old November 20, 2012, 11:22 PM   #7
RC20
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My brother got some Winchester brass for 30-06, not at all impressed.

He threw it into the it goes to the metal place bucket after 2 or 3 rounds.

Not sure how their other stuff is but it was really poor quality.

I am picking up a lot of once fired FC at the range that is fare better.
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Old November 21, 2012, 12:08 AM   #8
Jimro
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Unclenick,

I think you are right about my typing skills, .2105 makes a lot more sense based on the pressure it took to seat the rounds.

I'm still wishing I'd not seated all the 308 brass. Although in my experience the priming is always much easier after the first reload even with "hard" brass.

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