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Old October 12, 1999, 12:50 PM   #1
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For anyone interested, I have received a reply to my e-mails about Winchester primer failure from S. K. Quirk, which I will give the gist of, quoting in part. (Incidentally, on another board, poster Beverly McCord has had some similar and very disappointing results recently with Win. SP primers--this is another reloader with over twenty years of experience, for the record.)

Ms. Quirk wrote in a letter dated Oct. 1, 1999, but postmarked St. Louis Oct. 6, "I can assure you that we were very concerned to hear of this difficulty and are eager to be of assistance."

She goes on to say that "a ballistic investigation cannot be conducted without exhibits being made available to us" (DUH!). I infer from that the primer failure was not Winchesters fault, but mine because I didn't send the "exhibit" in for their analysis. And all the other recent failures experienced by handloaders reporting to me using Winchester primers and having much experience with the procedure are not to be laid at the feet of Winchester either. Sorry, I don't buy it.

Ms. Quirk provided an address for me to send future "exhibits" of failure. She adds, "We would like to thank you for the courtesy extended to us in this matter, [sic] with this in mind, we have enclosed a coupon [20 bucks worth], which you may use to purchase some replacement product."

My reply will be along these lines:

Dear Ms. Quirk,

If my original e-mail had received a personal response or my phone calls had been received by a real person at Winchester when I tried to contact you, or even if your voice mail had worked properly, much of the difficulty could have been avoided, I feel.

I appreciate your sending the $20 dollar coupon, but I must decline it and am returning it to you by enclosing it herein. I can't accept this "freebie," though I do recognize its conciliatory nature.

I don't think the implicit statement that I'm at fault for not returning the defective round to you is acceptable in the face of many reports to me via the internet of others experiencing the same problem with your primers. I would have been much more impressed if you had given me assurance that Winchester was devoting renewed effort at quality control in the manufacture of the primers and making its own investigation into the apparent recent rash of failures.

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Old October 12, 1999, 01:13 PM   #2
Mal H
Join Date: March 20, 1999
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Good reply to them Rod. I think that if I were the director of their primer department, I wouldn't say, "let's wait for an exhibit from these complainers so we can see what happened." Instead I would tell my testing dept. to go test 100,000 primers fired in as many different cases as possible and give a failure report asap. Winchester is on a slow but steady slide downhill. Sad.
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Old October 15, 1999, 01:46 PM   #3
Walt Welch
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Winchester, like all small arms ammunition manufacturers do test their primers. However, this must be a statistical sample. Sometimes bad lots may make it to the market place.

What do you gentlemen have against sending in left overs from bad lots? It seems to me that this would directly address the problem, and more importantly, help Win to resolve the problem. I have used the old style Win primers for years without problems, and should I have problems with their new types, I will send them the rest of the brick for testing.

You are all to be commended for bringing this potential problem to our attention, however. This is important information, and I hope that if there is a problem, that it is resolved rapidly. Walt
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Old October 20, 1999, 02:46 AM   #4
John Lawson
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I had my first primer failure on a Winchester large pistol primer yesterday. Imagine my surprise. It was struck uniformly, had a n indent as deep as all the others, but was dud. And, I switched to Winchesters years ago to avoid the misfires I was getting from CCI's.
I would like to send in leftovers, but I do not leave leftovers since I installed my Dillon 1050 press. And, I do not know which ones may fail, if any, in the future. So now I have a large lot of loaded ammo with a huge question mark floating over them. There may not be other failures. Is it at all possible that case lubricant is the problem?
Do those of you who have had failures use a spray lube? I use Dillon's, and I switched to it just before loading this lot of ammo.
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Old October 20, 1999, 08:01 AM   #5
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I have loaded 2000 of the brass colored WLP primers. So far about 1800 of them fired when I pulled the trigger. One required a double strike. I just pulled the hammer back and hit it again, I didn't look to see how hard it hit the first time. The rest are still in the box. I do not use any case lube for this .45acp. I don't have any failures to report, but if we're honestly evaluating the new WLP primers we need all the data. Hope this helps...

"An unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man."

Cesare Beccaria, the father of modern criminology

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Old October 20, 1999, 09:16 AM   #6
Joe D
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Guys, I switched to Win. a few months ago and have not had any problems after appox. 4,000 rds. of small and a little over 5,000 rds. of large. I had been using Federal but switched due to price. HTH
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Old October 20, 1999, 10:49 AM   #7
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I had a similar problem a year or so back with a lot of 9mm which I reloaded using Win SP bronze primers. Some fired on a restrike but many did not. I didn't have a problem before that or after.....It was just with that one box of primers.

I could see where Win would need to see the primers to find out what happened but problem is you can't mail primers.
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Old October 20, 1999, 11:31 AM   #8
Alan B
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Someone should ask Winchester how they want us to ship a shell that has had the primer struck once
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Old October 20, 1999, 03:45 PM   #9
Bill Mitchell
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I've been following this thread with interest. I've loaded and shot about 2800 of the new Winchester primers,and I've not had one mis-fire. My Marlin Cowboy rifle has had an action job and has a fairly light hammer. Primers shot with this rifle resemble those that have had light strikes,but each and every shot has gone off. That said,I do know of other shooters who have had problems with the new Winchester primers. It's interesting how selective the problems seem to be.

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Old October 20, 1999, 10:11 PM   #10
Join Date: June 23, 1999
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It's interesting to note that none of the lot numbers accompany reports of Win primer failures.

Lot numbers would expose a faulty batch.

However, if primers are bought by the hundred, it might be more difficult to find that empty box you loaded from five weeks ago

Of course, if Win did put out a bad lot, then THEY should have caught it, not us.

I use Win SP primers purshased six years ago with no problems.

However, I used Win 209 shotshell primers until they started making them with aluminum battery cups ( about two years ago ) and word spread that they had misfire problems.

I did load and fire 1,000 of problems, but switched to Cheddite brand....much less expensive and quite reliable.

Ralph in In.

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Old October 22, 1999, 12:19 PM   #11
Trapdoor Billy
Join Date: October 11, 1998
Location: Bear, DE,USA
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I have loaded over 7500 of the new LP primers with smokeless and Pyrodex and have not experienced a failur to fire.

Trapdoor Billy
Indian Scout and Delaware Cowboy

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Old October 23, 1999, 10:34 PM   #12
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I have had no problems with the Win Primers. Does anyone know why they switched to the bronze/brass color? To me it looks odd to have a nickle case with a brass colored primer,anyway just my personal opinion.
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Old October 24, 1999, 09:20 AM   #13
Fred S
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I'm sorry but I think you didn't give Winchester their due. How can they address a problem if you don't send them the examples they want for testing. I think you did a disservice to all of us reloaders by becoming confrontational. If you would have sent them what they wanted for testing they may have jeaded off a problem in the future. They can't do that by just on what you say.

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Old October 24, 1999, 03:56 PM   #14
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You sound confrontational concerning me. If you care to go back a ways and look in the archives, you'll see a post where I outlined the problems I had when I tried to privately deal with Winchester privately concerning the problem. I simply wasn't able to get it done because of their lack of response to my e-mail and attempts to contact them by phone.

If this were an isolated problem, I wouldn't have even mentioned it. It is persistent and widespread, as is evidenced by the experience of my friends and others on at least three boards. It has NEVER happened with any other primer I've used in over 20 years.

I repeat, it's not my fault that
Winchester produced an inferior product, whatever you may think. Your unrealistic support of Winchester in this instance seems to me to be unwarranted.
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Old October 24, 1999, 06:05 PM   #15
Fred S
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From what you post in this thread, I can't begin to understand why you didn't send them the bad primers. They responded cordially to your email and even offered t you $20 certificate to cover any expenses.

If this was such a serious problem, as it sounds to be, why not write them a formal letter. Email and phone is not always the best way to get things done.

Why did I react to this? From only whats in this thread, which is all that is available to me is, I see somebaody mad at a company and spreading on the internet and it seems like you're unwilling to help by sending them the problem item so they can analyze it.

I'm not mad at you, but a bit confused at what the issue is. If this concerns all of us who use Winchester Primers, as I do, then maybe it would be in all of our best interest for you to send them the bad stuff.

And then you can take the high road and graciously accept thier $20 certifcate and get two new boxes of primers.

This is not directed at you personally, but I see a tendancy for folks to rip into a company with being part of the solution. And its easy to do on the net... You can take the positive road and solve things aor the negative road and be frustrated. I bet Winchester don't care either way and their business will go on. But I bet they do want to know what went wrong with their product. becuase those who sell poor products don't stay long in business. Like Colt.....

Take care


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Old October 24, 1999, 07:39 PM   #16
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Fred, Candidly, It seems that you not only didn't bother to read the previous thread(s), you didn't read the one in this thread with discernment.

Winchester DID NOT send me a 20 dollar certificate to send in the primers, nor did they request the remaining primers. The twenty dollar certificate was a credit toward the purchase of future Winchester products. They wanted the one primer which didn't detonate, which Ms. Quirk designated the "exhibit." That had already been discarded.

I was invited SPECIFICALLY by the reply to my original e-mail to contact Ms. Quirk by phone, which I tried to do twice and the Winchester automated system disconnected me both times. A real person was unattainable, apparently. I made three good faith attempts to contact them privately about the problem, all unsatisfactorily resolved.

Furthermore, to properly assess the situation as it really exists, Winchester would have to examine "exhibits" from the many other failures experienced by others reporting on the net and from my friends. The problem is too widespread to have been caused by my stupidity or carelessness. Thousands of Winchester primers previously used successfully by me over the years are pretty strong evidence, as well as the fact that this is the solitary occurence of this sort I've experienced with any brand of primer.

Your "facts" are faulty and led you to erroneous conclusions. Is it possible that your transferred your frustration with others' gripes onto me?

The fact that Winchester apparently "doesn't care" is precisely the reason I posted. I praise companies when they do well and I feel that I need to warn others when they don't.
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