Small Pistol primers for Small Rifle primers


November 11, 2007, 12:25 PM
I am having difficulty locating locally Small Rifle primers for loading .30 Carbine. I saw a add where Small Pistol primers were used in .30 Carbine loads. Has anyone experienced this ? If so, how did it work out. I reload the .30 carbine using Alliant 2400.

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November 11, 2007, 02:28 PM
That should work; .30 Carbine pressures are not too high, and 2400 is easy to ignite. If you use 296 or H-110 powder, you'd have to use small pistol magnum primers.

Be aware that pistol primers may be more sensitive than rifle primers -- I don't know if the .30 M1 Carbine is suceptable to slam-fires or not, but you'll have to be extra careful (unless you are shooting these in a Ruger Blackhawk or an Automag III, etc)

November 11, 2007, 02:32 PM
Not a good idea for several reasons, but slam-fires are one possibility I wouldn't rule out.

You don't want to be there if an M-1 Carbine fires out of battery!

November 11, 2007, 03:33 PM
Small pistol primer cups are thinner than small rifle primer cups, which means they are softer. It's not a good idea to use pistol primers in place of rifle primers in cartridges that produce pressure in the 40,000 CUP range. In fact, it's a really bad idea.

I know there is going to be someone who will say they've done it, but I still don't endorse the idea.

Hope this helps.


November 12, 2007, 06:55 AM
I wouldn't do it either . . .I'm sure it'll light them off most of the time but not worth the effort.

November 12, 2007, 09:35 AM
+1 on the no go. I've used small rifle primers for pistol rounds (9mm major) but wouldn't go the other way.

November 12, 2007, 11:45 AM
I would say that slam fires are the greater hazard from using pistol primers if you wear large shooting glasses that actually cover your eyes.

Why take the risk? Wait a bit and you will eventually find small rifle primers somewhere.

November 14, 2007, 03:40 AM
I know a few reloaders who have use a small rifle primer in place of a small pistol Magnum primer but never a SRP in place of a SPP.

November 14, 2007, 08:39 AM
i would not do it in the .30 carbine. i do often use Winchester small pistol primers in my re-loads for the .17 K-Hornet, .22 Hornet and .22 K-Hornet rounds. IMHO-They provide better accuracy when used with 2400, 4198 and 4227 in those calibers.

Grandpa Shooter
November 15, 2007, 12:07 AM

Check here. Should be a good reference source.

lil ski
November 15, 2007, 05:42 AM
I wouldn't try it as stated before pistol primers are softer than rifle. I have use them the other way rifle in pistol. Just my 2cents

November 15, 2007, 11:02 PM
I think I would only substitute Small pistol primers into the 30 carbine for one reason, if I was firing it out of a pistol such as the Ruger Blackhawk or T/C Contender/Encore. Otherwise, it would always get Small rifle primers.

November 15, 2007, 11:29 PM
alsaqr , interesting you should say that. Don't these cartridges produce the same pressures as the 30 carbine? I am about to try small pistol primers in my hornet with Lil'Gun. That powder is supposed to produce less pressure than H4227, which I currently use (my loads are a bit hot - to stabilise heavier bullets). I have used small pistol primers in my 223 with an H4227 equivalent powder to replicate hornet velocities and those were fine - but the pressure was at pistol levels.

November 16, 2007, 12:08 AM
Hook686, I had a look in my loading manual and all I could find was CCI-400 and 450 primers for pistol and CCI-400 primers for rifle. Double check me, but aren't those small pistol and small magnum pistol primers? 30 carbine loads have a 40,000 CUP SAAMI rating. Hornet loads using small pistol primers and Lil'Gun are listed as 41,500 CUP - again, double check me!! If I am right, then it would seem you can use small pistol primers. BUT, please, several posters have cautioned against it for two reasons. On the pressure issue, I would suggest using load data specifically stated as being for small pistol primers and for 'slam-fires', well, what can I say? (IMHO, no gun should ever be susceptible to any kind of malfunction!) Doesn't the M1 30 carbine have a floating firing pin?

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