Primers in a jar?


PDA






gilgsn
December 22, 2011, 03:19 PM
Hello,

Is there any reason not to store primers in a glass jar, as opposed to the plastic trays they come in? Could they go off if the jar fell to the ground?

If you enjoyed reading about "Primers in a jar?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
thorn-
December 22, 2011, 03:28 PM
Yep, they could.

A jar would also trap moisture more easily than a sleeve tray.

thorn

JohnM
December 22, 2011, 03:30 PM
Hardly likely, but why?
Think of all the primers you're going to lose if you do drop the jar and break it :D
The factory cartons work fine for storage and keeping track of your supply.

Walkalong
December 22, 2011, 03:31 PM
Is there any reason not to store primers in a glass jarYes, glass shrapnel.

rcmodel
December 22, 2011, 03:35 PM
That has been a BIG NO NO since well before I started reloading in 1962.
A glass jar full of primers is a field expedient hand grenade if you drop it on the floor.
There have been actual reported fatalities from exactly that.

Primers are shipped and stored in those neat little trays to keep them separated from each other if one primer were to explode.
At the very worst, no more then 100 would go off at once.
But more likely no more then one or two rows would go off.
And the flying cups & anvils would at least be slowed down enough not to kill you on the spot.

A glass jar, or any other container of loose primers = Potential Bomb = Don't do it!!!

rc

ranger335v
December 22, 2011, 03:35 PM
There's not a single reason to do so, several reasons not to.

Pete D.
December 22, 2011, 03:36 PM
A glass jar?
Why would you want to?
I have a hard time believing that that was a serious question.
Pete

oneounceload
December 22, 2011, 04:11 PM
There is a story about a young worker at one of the ammo plants walking down the hall with a glass jar full of primers and swirling them around as he walked. Story goes he built up enough static electricity that the jar exploded

Can't say whether it is real or not, but I wouldn't want to find out

W.E.G.
December 22, 2011, 04:47 PM
http://i227.photobucket.com/albums/dd7/rkba2da/humor/DarwinFacepalm.jpg

Krogen
December 22, 2011, 04:59 PM
That guy's had a headache for a long time now. He's sure aged since the last time I saw him.... ;-)

mac60
December 22, 2011, 06:37 PM
I read a different version of that story. In this version the primers were in a coffee can and the guy was shaking the can. The guy was killed.

mdi
December 22, 2011, 07:08 PM
I too have read of primers stored in a jar/container exploding when dropped. Packed loose and a slight concussion can ignite one, and then a chain reaction and KABOOM! Easiest to keep 'em in original plastic flats

AK_Maine_iac
December 22, 2011, 08:27 PM
I have often thought that the practice of keeping pre- loaded rounds, including the primers, for inline muzzle loaders in those plastic tubes. Especially in the pocket of a wool jacket. Wool, static electricity and primer. Sounds like a accident waiting to happen.

BeerSleeper
December 22, 2011, 09:22 PM
Flip the question around. Instead of asking for a good reason *why not*, ask for a reason *why*?

I see nothing to be accomplished by repackaging new primers.

Leave them in the well and properly designed package they came in (even if it's that ginormous federal box)

rfwobbly
December 22, 2011, 09:35 PM
Supposing you did.... How could you ever tell rifle from pistol? Or mag from regular?

zxcvbob
December 22, 2011, 09:40 PM
http://gifs.gifbin.com/062010/1275389857_naked-gun-facepalm.gif

gamestalker
December 22, 2011, 10:49 PM
I like the tray they come in, because I can turn it up side down and dispense the number of them I need without having to handle them.

BeerSleeper
December 22, 2011, 10:58 PM
^^what he said^^

I know it's probably just me being obsessive, but I try to never touch the primers with my dirty fingers.

You can slide the tray out, and drop primers in the priming tool, 10 at a time. If I need less than 100 primed brass, I either prime in multiples of ten (one row of primers dropped from the tray), or multiples of 100 and put the extra primed brass in a jar (if you must put primers in a jar, that's probably a good way to do it).

AFK
December 22, 2011, 11:02 PM
What he said

moxie
December 22, 2011, 11:28 PM
Look under the bridge. The answer is there.

jack44
December 22, 2011, 11:47 PM
Safety.............. Man!

GLOOB
December 22, 2011, 11:49 PM
Primers are high explosives. High explosives make a concussive wave in air that will set off other high explosives. E.g, when you set off a bundle of dynamite, you only need one cap. With nothing but air between them, a detonated primer could potentially set off another nearby primer without even contacting it. A jar full? One detonation = 1 massive simultaneous explosion. When they're in loaded ammo or proper packaging, they're insulated on all sides by buffer material.

kingmt
December 22, 2011, 11:49 PM
Wow. You guys get a little carried away. Listen to the stories you guys are telling. They arn't that bad. If you drop a glass jar it would break before it could build up pressure. It might still be able to get some glass moving but not lethal. Coffee can? Come on! Static. If that was the cases they would have to be stored in a static free environment or grounded. Not all primers come in the nice little square tray that keeps them all separate.

OP
Why would you want to keep them in a jar.

GLOOB
December 23, 2011, 12:01 AM
Carried away? No. I don't think the chance of one going off by static is significant. I doubt your chances of one going off by itself is very high, no matter how you store them.

But in that off chance that one were to go off in a jar, then they'd all blow. And that wouldn't be any fun. It could easily kill or maim anyone within arms reach.

Primers are high explosives. That's what high explosives do.

1SOW
December 23, 2011, 12:34 AM
Primers ARE the most dangerous components reloaders handle. They generally take a sharp impact to "explode", but purposely piling them together loose inside a container is tempting Murphy to make an appearance, a very dramatic appearance.

Take a small empty Testors paint bottle. Punch a hole in the lid with a nail. Fill the bottle "half" full of match heads. Put one match in the hole as a fuse. Light the match and run, because it WILL explode decisively. Matches aren't even "explosive", just flammable.

Primers are "explosive" uncontained. With enough heat or impact they will explode.

TexasShooter59
December 23, 2011, 12:51 AM
And, you can get unused primers back into the tray pretty easily without touching them.

medalguy
December 23, 2011, 03:01 AM
Well, here's what the experts say. This is from the SAAMI book on storage of primers. Seems like I have posted this several times recently but it's good to read it once in a while:

Properties of Primers

Properties of particular importance to the dealer and user
of primers are as follows:

1. Primers may explode if subjected to mishandling.
Explosions may be caused by friction and by percussion,
such as hammering, pounding, dropping or bullet impact.
Heating by fire, static electricity, sparks, hot tobacco
ashes, or other unspecified abuses may also cause
primers to explode.

2. If primers are loose or in bulk, having contact one
with another, one primer exploding can, and usually will,
cause a violent, sympathetic explosion of all primers so
situated. In other words, one primer exploding for any reason
under these circumstances will normally cause all of
the primers to explode in one violent blast.

Handling of Primers

Primers do explode. This is the purpose for which they
have been designed. They demand the respect and careful
handling due any device containing explosives.

I would very strongly suggest that it might be prudent to follow the guidelines stated here for your continued longevity.

BeerSleeper
December 23, 2011, 03:11 AM
Time to invent a fake myth and submit it to mythbusters. Something, anything, that will prompt them to drop a jar of 1000 primers from a sufficient height, onto a surface such as concrete.

I'm certainly not doing it, but I'd love to see it safely from the couch side of the TV.

GLOOB
December 23, 2011, 03:50 AM
If you drop a glass jar it would break before it could build up pressure.
Priming compound doesn't need to be in a closed container to build up pressure. It's a high explosive. If you pour a pile of gunpowder on the ground and light it, it burns. If you put a bunch of priming compound pellets in a loose pile and lit it, it would all blow up at the same time. More pellets = bigger explosion.

A sympathetic explosion of a 100 primers would be dangerous enough without the primer cups, anvils, and glass shrapnel. Just the pressure wave alone could blow your fingers off if you were holding them in your hand. A firecracker can do it. 100 primers would, too.

Someone on here has a nice picture of a steel rod stuck through his ceiling from a primer explosion.

Master Blaster
December 23, 2011, 09:18 AM
You know it never ceases to amaze me that this question will come up at least once or twice a year. Its a really bad idea, very dangerous. Besides how would you handle them easily into a flip tray, or a loading device from a jar. Sometimes I think there is a Chinese troll in Bejing that makes these posts in order to subvert us reloaders into a dangerous practice.

The companies that make primers know what they are doing the packaging is designed to safely store, and handle the most dangerous component used in reloading. The only time that primers should come out of their factory packaging is when you are going to reload with them.

ReloaderFred
December 23, 2011, 01:50 PM
Putting primers in a glass jar, or for that matter any other bulk container, will result in a hand grenade, and will likely result in some serious injury or death. The explosion of primers by the employee shaking the container was in the CCI plant many years ago.

When I attend the SHOT Show in Las Vegas, I take old packaging and give it to the assorted manufacturers for their company displays. I took one of the old wooden tray primer containers to the CCI booth a couple of years ago and they wouldn't even touch it until I assured them there were no primers in it, as they stated that packaging was very dangerous. When I told them I still had primers packaged that way, they cautioned about handling them and I assured them I wasn't going to get careless and blow myself up. They're very paranoid about primer packaging at CCI and Federal, and with good reason.

Leave the primers in their original packaging and use them as intended.

Hope this helps.

Fred

kingmt
December 23, 2011, 03:45 PM
The statement was that no pressure could build in a broken jar. It amazes me how little reloaders know about what they are useing & how scared they are of what they don't know. Then they pass it as gospel. If you hold a firecracker on a open hand it will probably sting but wrap your fingers around it & you may loose them.

jcwit
December 23, 2011, 03:57 PM
When I attend the SHOT Show in Las Vegas, I take old packaging and give it to the assorted manufacturers for their company displays. I took one of the old wooden tray primer containers to the CCI booth a couple of years ago and they wouldn't even touch it until I assured them there were no primers in it, as they stated that packaging was very dangerous.

OMG! Well we now know what to expect of the CCI's sales dept.


Please, Please, Please, don't let ANY of this info into the hands of Janet Napolitano and her organization.

rcmodel
December 23, 2011, 04:05 PM
If you hold a firecracker on a open hand it will probably sting but wrap your fingers around it & you may loose them.A jar of primers does not have to be contained to blow you up.

As has already been stated several times, it amounts to an IED bomb or hand grenade.
And not due to the glass fragments alone.

The blast from that much primer compound is powerful enough to blow your feet off.

Not to mention several hundred primer cups & anvils turning into high speed shrapnel with a blast radius of several yards.

There is no possible way you could avoid being severely injured or killed if a jar of primers went off on the floor at your feet.

rc

X-Rap
December 23, 2011, 04:05 PM
I really can't imagine why one would want to pack primers in anything but their og packaging but I also don't see a mass detonation in a jar anymore than in the box. It would take quite a chain of events, and even then the jar would have been broken upon initial impact so any schrapnel dangers really wouldn't exist.

Walkalong
December 23, 2011, 04:20 PM
To recap:

Primers contain explosive compounds. Yes, explosive.

If one primer detonates while laying next to others without any protective barrier, the others will detonate as well.

The resulting explosion will send cups, anvils, and in this case, glass shards, at high speed in every direction.

If you are in the vicinity, you will be injured, or even killed.

Primers are packaged the way they are for a very good reason.

It is unsafe and unwise to pour a bunch of primers together in any kind of container, much less glass.

In other words, it's just plain dangerous!

rcmodel
December 23, 2011, 04:28 PM
jar would have been broken upon initial impact so any shrapnel dangers really wouldn't exist. People still don't seem to get this.

Here is what a single flying .223 primer will do to a section of furnace duct sheet metal.

Tell me there is no shrapnel danger if a whole bunch of them go off between your legs!
http://i81.photobucket.com/albums/j219/rcmodel/KTOG/AmmoFire2.jpg

rc

X-Rap
December 23, 2011, 04:33 PM
I think this is a perfect job for the myth busters, I have never seen or heard (first person account) of primer detonation from anything but a great deal of pressure or impact.They are very stable or we would be having more AD's in guns or severely injured re loaders. I am not saying they don't have inherent hazards but they are very stable.
For the myth busters I would like to see a pickle jar full dropped from a second story window and a reloading bench as well as have a 1000 pack driven over by a UPS truck.
Should be an easy job even for one of us adventuresome people here.

X-Rap
December 23, 2011, 04:35 PM
RC how did you manage to direct that many impacts to that particular piece of sheet metal?
You may be a fine candidate for the test.:D

rcmodel
December 23, 2011, 05:06 PM
It was an "ammo in a fire" cook-off test I did some time ago.

Rounds in an aluminum tube with sheet metal duct at both ends.
I heated the tube with a torch until they popped.

http://www.thehighroad.org/showpost.php?p=7001165&postcount=15

rc

longdayjake
December 23, 2011, 05:17 PM
Loose primers in a container of some kind really is a hand grenade. Don't do it. I recently did some experimenting with primers and all I can say is that it is amazing that such little things can do that much damage.

RustyFN
December 23, 2011, 05:18 PM
I would like to see a pickle jar full dropped from a second story window and a reloading bench as well as have a 1000 pack driven over by a UPS truck.
Should be an easy job even for one of us adventuresome people here.

Let us know how it turns out and don't forget to take picteres.

Walkalong
December 23, 2011, 07:01 PM
I have never seen or heard (first person account) of primer detonation from anything but a great deal of pressure or impact.They are very stable or we would be having more AD's in guns or severely injured re loaders. I am not saying they don't have inherent hazards but they are very stable.
Yes they are. They are hard to set off. It takes heat, flame, or a blow. They are very safe when used correctly.

But to put a bunch together and store them as the OP suggested, is just plain stupid. Too much potential for serious damage if something goes wrong.

sugarmaker
December 23, 2011, 07:05 PM
Read the warning on the box.

RTR_RTR
December 23, 2011, 07:45 PM
I wouldn't find it surprising at all if there was enough HE in 1000 primers that the concussion alone would be lethal from the distance present dropping them at your feet

kingmt
December 23, 2011, 08:08 PM
I don't know if this is funny or sad.

RC

I would like to hear more details about your test. Was these load rounds or primer only? It also seems they were contained & directed. How far from the detonation was the impact? No doubt it could sting but those marks in that thin metal so there is no danger of death.

Short lesson in explosives: Slower pushes farther.
If you want to split a rock you would drill down the center & use a fast charge. If you want to send pieces a long ways you use a slow charge.

Primers use a very fast charge.

What about the way percussion caps are packed?

rcmodel
December 23, 2011, 08:30 PM
I had a friend years ago who was setting at the kitchen table in his underwear reading the morning paper.

While drying a cookie sheet full of just washed .38 Spl cases in the oven.

One was primed, it went off, and buried a primer cup between the bones in the top of his foot deep enough they had to cut it out at the ER.
And he was setting clear across the small kitchen from the stove.

Primers use a very fast charge.That is what everyone is trying to say.
And it's not just fast. It's a detonation.

That will send each primer cup & anvil flying at supersonic speed until air resistance slows them down several feet away.


rc

ArtP
December 23, 2011, 08:33 PM
I read a story about a bunch of primers that went off in Dillon primer feed tube. Have a read. These little guys should not be taken lightly.

http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=495909

If you read down through the story, Grant shows a picture of his hand after removal of the bandages (post #105). Fortunately Grant is okay, far as I know.

The story is a nice reminder about complacency, if one still needs a reminder, and Grant apparently followed good common sense rules.

X-Rap
December 23, 2011, 09:35 PM
Primers in a tube no matter if they are heated or impacted would certainly be prone to mass detonation and the blast would be contained until the tube was destroyed. I don't see much to argue with on that point much like one stuck in a primmer pocket until it is detonated.
My point is there has to be a cause for detonation and impact, pressure or heat is what does it. Now if the jar in question is hit with a sledge hammer or thrown in a fire all bets are off but until I see more reason to believe I will say that hitting hitting against each other from a height of 3 or 4 feet probably wont bring on the zombie apocalypse.
I still say putting them in a jar is a bad idea on so many levels, I just don't thing they are as bad as some are saying.
My case in point would be the way BP Caps are sold and carried by millions of shooters. I'm not sure of the difference in composition but they certainly make a bang.

1SOW
December 23, 2011, 09:44 PM
The fact that posters are downplaying the possibilty/potential of a dramatic explosion with storage of loose primers in a sealed glass jar (or ANY container) shows an unbelievable and DANGEROUS naivety.

You can flip a coin and throw "heads" 20 X in a row and the odds have not changed on the 21st throw.
If there are a couple thousand primers in that jar, and you drop it from three feet to a hard surface, it may not go off. If you do this 10 X, they may not go off.

On the other hand "they" don't all need to be detonated. If only "ONE" primer is hit so it explodes, they will "ALL" go off. The chain reaction is exponentially faster than the fastest reloading powder.
Any adequate heat source, static electricity or any other heat source, that touches the primer formula will also set them all off.

I have a post here somewhere, where I intentionally (and safely) touched heat to a primer in an open metal container. The "instantaneous bang" was surprisingly loud.
It should also be noted that FED primers contain a 'minute' amount of nitroglycerin which adds sensitivity to impact. (verifiable on the FED MSDS site for content)

New reloaders will read this thread. Don't "teach" potentially dangerous practices.
.

ArtP
December 23, 2011, 09:49 PM
X-RAP,

The apparent cause, and know one knows for sure, is static electricity.

I'm pretty sure none of us know as much about primer compound as the manufacturer, but we're all aware of their danger. With that awareness and naivety, why not treat them with the utmost respect and avoid using our own clever ideas for storage and handling?

X-Rap
December 23, 2011, 10:19 PM
So far I have stated that primers in a jar is a bad idea, stated known means of detonation, and tried to point out that having them tightly contained in a cylinder like a reloading feed tube will exacerbate the results of any detonation.
I would say that a primer tube going off would be like a mass detonation in a tube fed center fire rifle, we all know not to put spire pointed bullets in our favorite Mod 94 but I don't think I would worry about dropping an ammo can full of rounds like that from 3', get what I am saying.
Again I point out percussion caps and the way they are shipped and sold.
In my more curious years I actually detonated some primers by using a hammer, they did pop when hit but it was hardly an event and took a pretty good lick. I also had a friend who did one better and loaded a shotgun shell full and shot the side if an old combine, I was not present but he and the gun survived and the result of the impact to the sheet metal was as expected. Again I don't condone or encourage misuse of anything including match heads but some of you are making primers out to be more of a hazard than they are and working way to hard and miss using them to make them a hazard.
Keep them in their original containers and do not force them into cases and all will be well.

The apparent cause, and know one knows for sure, is static electricity.


On that note I think glass is probably one of the safest insulators from static electricity and the plastic that primers are shipped in not so much.

jcwit
December 23, 2011, 10:35 PM
Hey there Buster, you know where common sense is going to get you, don't you.




















Couldn't resist!

kudu
December 23, 2011, 10:42 PM
Just think what happens when my wife swept one up in the sweeper. :what:

No major damage, except her panties.

kingmt
December 23, 2011, 11:04 PM
That is what everyone is trying to say.
And it's not just fast. It's a detonation.

That will send each primer cup & anvil flying at supersonic speed until air resistance slows them down several feet away.


rc
RC I love that signature.

You got that backward. Fast burn=short distance. Slow=push.

I still have no idea why anyone would want to put them in a jar tho. The glass breaking should take must of the impact away from the primer as long as we are still talking 100's but now we have bumped it to 1K's you might be able to get enough waight to crush them.

jcwit
December 23, 2011, 11:28 PM
Instead of thinking about dropping the jar full of primers causing a primer to be crushed enough to ignite thereby causing an explosion mayhap we need to think in another direction.

With all the primers being stored loose there by allowing the primer compound to dust out of the primer creating an explosive powder more easily ignited and then causing the explosion. Muxh the same way as Mr. Lee wrote about in his reloading manual regarding not filling the tray clear full with a certain mfg.'s primers.

Thoughts?

Now then going to the caps used in muzzleloaders, are they not covered with a layer of foil, thereby sealing them from powdering off?

I'm calling it powdering off for lack of better terminology, someone else have a better word, go for it.

SlamFire1
December 23, 2011, 11:51 PM
Been going through my old American Rifleman magazines. It is strange how the same question goes back at least to the 60's, and the answer is always the same: dont store them in a glass jar, it could explode.

Some of the other reasons I remember were that light exposure is bad for priming compound and that "primer" dust will collect in one place.

I suppose it is very possible for priming compound to flake or mechanically break down and give off "primer dust".

I don't know what would set it off, but it might only take a little than you would have a big boom.

I had a link to a percussion cap going off as it was being seated. Guy was pushing in his revolver and it went off and took off part of this thumb.

You have to be careful with primers.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v479/SlamFire/Reloading/FederalPrimersHornadyLNLtubeexplosi.jpg

kingmt
December 23, 2011, 11:53 PM
Mine don't havery a foil over them.

I'm also sure static won't set them off because I just sent 50K volts through a LRP 50 times for good measure & it didn't go off. The sparks were flying but no detonation.

jcwit
December 23, 2011, 11:56 PM
I had a link to a percussion cap going off as it was being seated. Guy was pushing in his revolver and it went off and took off part of this thumb.

Thats why they made capping tools for use with muzzleloaders, whether rifles, pistols, or revolvers.

Steve C
December 24, 2011, 12:18 AM
Every once and a while you read about someone killing themselves because they stored primers in a jar or can or some other inappropriate container. Its best to keep primers and powder in the containers they are sold in and follow all directions in the loading manuals regarding storage and safety.

Bmac1949
December 24, 2011, 12:54 AM
Perhaps the OP needs to take up a new hobby. maybe Wyatt on American Guns could give him a spot in the show as safety supervisor.

gilgsn
December 25, 2011, 06:28 PM
Thanks everyone, I suspected as much. Just wanted to verify it. I did think about it, but then, a little voice told me it wasn't the smartest idea. I have been reloading for years, and always kept primers in their original packaging. This thread however has given me a newly found respect for the power of primers, and caps.

The static electricity issue is interesting. Does any reloading press manufacturer suggest grounding their machines?

kingmt
December 25, 2011, 07:46 PM
Refer to post 58.

ArtP
December 25, 2011, 10:25 PM
Mine don't havery a foil over them.

I'm also sure static won't set them off because I just sent 50K volts through a LRP 50 times for good measure & it didn't go off. The sparks were flying but no detonation.
....Nevermind

jolly roger
December 25, 2011, 10:32 PM
Pure Stupid to place primers in a jar. Primers are made of lead styphenate or lead azide, fairly shock sensitive high explosives..Contain a bunch in a jar and drop it and it might not be pretty, that's a fact. If one went off it WOULD sympathetically detonate no question. I seem to recall the writer Wiley Clapp supposedly knew of a guy that did just that and dropped a can or jar of them on a concrete floor. Created about a 2 foot deep crater in floor with subsequent shrapnel into "lower regions". Guy lived but was majorly messed up.

Krogen
December 26, 2011, 02:07 AM
Mine don't havery a foil over them.

I'm also sure static won't set them off because I just sent 50K volts through a LRP 50 times for good measure & it didn't go off. The sparks were flying but no detonation.

Tell us how you sent 50 kV through an LRP. Without more info I'm having a real hard time buying this. Sparks flying? Do tell.

What is an LRP? Voltage doesn't go through a conductor, it appears across it. If your LRP is metallic, then an astronomical current will flow through it to establish 50 kV across it. This is simple Ohm's law.

Did you simply charge yourself up by walking across a carpet and discharge into the LRP (whatever that is)?

ReloaderFred
December 26, 2011, 03:25 AM
An LRP is a Large Rifle Primer.

Hope this helps.

Fred

kingmt
December 26, 2011, 04:00 AM
jolly

Might & fact used in the same sentence? A 2' crater from a detonation on top of the ground & the guy lived? No way. Any explosives that would dig a 2' crater from on top of the ground would kill from the shock wave alone.

Krogen

Why do you sound like you think I'm lying to. I don't care enough about what you think to waste my time lying to you. The charger is rated at 1J but there is no way all of that power would make it to that the end of the lead. Everything is also always over rated also. It is a safe guess that 50K was getting there tho.

You are right on about the cap creating a barrier around it also. I just thought it was over most peoples head & didn't want to explain it.

1SOW
December 26, 2011, 04:25 AM
This isn't meant to hijack the thread, but does go along with the original discussion--somewhat. I don't know whether an electro-static discharge can ignite a primer or not. BUT:

If you've ever touched a wrench or metallic tool to your car battery and bumped the other end of the tool to the metallic portion of the car, you probably saw big sparks and a burnt tip of the screwdriver or whatever. This is LOW Voltage (about 14.5vdc) and HIGH current (400-800 amps depending on the battery.)
This is because an actual "cicuit exists" between the pos. battery post and the return--the frame.

Lightening is an electrostatic discharge in the extreme. VERY High voltage can do strange things. Sometimes it'll travel down a conductor and no damage. Other times smoke an flame.
If your body is charged by static electricity, like when you scuff across a nylon carpet at zero humidity, it doesn't need a "Circuit" like your car battery. It just needs a difference in potential that it can "jump across".
So when you are at a 50-100k volt potential (can be more with static charge), your doorknob is at a much lower potential; and an electro-static discharge (ESD) can occur just as your hand approaches the doorknob. The very high voltage jumps to the doorknob at a LOW current. The point at which the arc hits is heated. The gap it jumps acts the same as a resistor in a circuit. It 'drops' the voltage (arcs) almost instantaneously.
Power = voltage X current, so 12 Volts X 600 Amps = 7,200 Watts AND 100,000volts x 72 mA = 7,200watts.

The potential is there to ignite a highly flammable material. With aircraft refueling, static build-up is a MAJOR safety concern. Multiple earth grounds are used to put the fuel truck and the aircraft at the same voltage "potential" to prevent an ESD from blowing up the aircraft. It HAS happened on a number of occassions before safety preventive measures were mandated.

Make of this what you will.

We now return you to your normal programming.

Walkalong
December 26, 2011, 09:58 AM
Electricity follows the path of least resistance. Your body can take a lot of juice if it only flows through you with something down the line pulling the amperage, and not you.

I bet primers are the same. Electricity flowing through the cup or through the anvil would be fine until it heated up, and if the amp draw in the circuit was light enough, it would not get hot. (Same with wire)

But a spark, which is just electricity jumping to find a route, would set it off.

X-Rap
December 26, 2011, 11:05 AM
I don't see static electricity or sparks to have much relevancy in a glass (insulated) jar and an explosion blowing a 2' hole in a concrete floor???:scrutiny::rolleyes:

kingmt
December 26, 2011, 12:09 PM
You need amps with volts to crate heat. Heat is the friction from amps being shoved by volts into a resistance in the circuit.

X-Rap
December 26, 2011, 12:14 PM
We are learning much about electricity, to bad the primer discussion is so much conjecture and speculation.

ReloaderFred
December 26, 2011, 01:43 PM
The bottom line is that a lot of trial and error, plus engineering, went into the current packaging for primers destined to be used by reloaders. It would be prudent to take advantage of past experience and engineering and leave the primers in the factory packaging until used for their intended purpose.

Hope this helps.

Fred

mdi
December 26, 2011, 02:26 PM
I can't substantiate it, but, I've read/heard of primers going off in a primer tool tube...

rcmodel
December 26, 2011, 02:46 PM
See post #48 & #57 about that.

rc

X-Rap
December 26, 2011, 02:55 PM
I have decapped many live primers and never had one go off, I also have had some FTF due to light strikes so I contend that it takes quite a concentrated or massive impact to detonate a primer. This disscussion has prompted me to think about some further tests.
Any guess what quantity of primers is require to cause mass detonation from a drop?? How high?? Any specific brand??
Do you think I could put say a hundred live primers in a babyfood jar with the balance being spent ones and get a detonation of at least one live primer with a drop from 3',10', 20??
How many does it take to blow a 2' hole in a concrete floor??

ReloaderFred
December 26, 2011, 03:12 PM
I've had a primer column go off on two separate occasions on an automated Ammo Load machine. The first time was with a full column of primers, and the second time was with a nearly empty column. It will definately get your attention, and the full column will bulge the blast shield, drive the brass follower rod through the roof, and cause damage to the machine. It also scares the crap out of you.

We figured it was a buildup of primer compound powder in the area of the primer slide that was either set off by the friction of the slide moving back and forth, or a primer got cocked and was crushed by the movement of the primer slide.

The Ammo Load is a motor driven automatic loader, and is capable of high production, but when a bunch of primers go off, it's pretty startling, so say the least. Primers can go off without impact, but the conditions have to be right for it to happen.

I also routinely decap live primers without incident. I've been at this since 1963 and have roughly 800,000 rounds loaded so far, so I do have a little experience in this area.

Once again, I'll state to leave the primers in the packaging they come in, period. Use them as intended and all will be well. You don't want to be the one ejected from the gene pool...............

Hope this helps.

Fred

jcwit
December 26, 2011, 03:22 PM
And once again we're back to primer compound dust. See post #56.

CollinLeon
December 26, 2011, 03:37 PM
I can see only one potential advantage of storing primers in a bulk container -- space savings. I suspect that a 1-qt plastic take-out food container could store a LOT of primers and if you labeled them (SP, SPM, LP, LPM, SR, SRM, LR, LRM), you would have a handy storage method while still keeping them separated by type.

The disadvantages completely outweigh this single advantage though.

I open up one tray of primers when my primer tube runs empty. I have primer tubes for each of the types of primers that I use, so if I finish reloading the brass that I have on hand and still have primers left, I just hang the primer tube up on a rack by the reloading press. I don't take the primers out of the tube and put them back in the tray.

I wonder how the major ammunition manufacturers handle their primers prior to them being inserted into the brass...

If they use primers from another source, do they also come in the same size trays that we buy them in? Considering the amount of ammunition that they product, I have to doubt that. They would have to be getting the primers in some sort of bulk container that would be more conducive to an automated process.

If they produce their own primers, then there must be some stage on an automated assembly line that feeds the primer cups one at a time, drops the primer compound in them, and then places the anvil there prior to forwarding the completed primer to the next spot on the line that puts the primer in the brass cartridge.

Is it possible that the primer compound is put in their wet so that it would not be explosive? I seem to remember reading an article where gunpowder had been stored wet for many years and when dried out, it worked as good as new. Don't remember if it was black powder or smokeless powder though...

X-Rap
December 26, 2011, 03:41 PM
It seems like the incident in post 48 was never resolved and considering the fact that there are probably tens of thousands of aluminum pick up tubes that have processed millions of primers it is an anomaly close to the polar,grizzly and lightning strike.
The tube in 57? I don't know what that is, it seems large for a feed or pick up tube but there is nothing to scale it to but to me it is suspect.
I am truly interested in static and primer residue as the combination of the two seems the only plausible reason for detonation aside from those that would be obvious. I don't think that on their own either would set one of though.
The guy who had the pick up tube blow was no doubt injured and it points out that S happens and sometime we never know why.
Even this seems doubtful since I am under the impression/understanding that the business end of modern primers are sealed from moisture and solvents to some degree so it seems unlikely for particles to come loose though I have not proven this.
I also don't see residue in the shipping trays or flip trays.

Walkalong
December 26, 2011, 04:10 PM
Once again, I'll state to leave the primers in the packaging they come in, period. Use them as intended and all will be well. You don't want to be the one ejected from the gene pool...............Fred is right, and was much more polite than when I ran out of patience and called it just plain stupid. :)

Anyway, this one is done AFAICT.

TonyT
December 26, 2011, 05:39 PM
That's even more insane than placing loose ammo in glass jars.

ReloaderFred
December 26, 2011, 06:05 PM
X-Rap,

The tube in post #57 is the blast shield that surrounds the actual primer tube. The primer tube was inside it when it blew. And there is a reason that progressive presses have blast shields, believe me. If you'd ever had the primer column go off on you, you'd fully appreciate the power in those little primers when combined. I have had them go off, twice. It was right there in front of my face, but fortunately, the press had both a blast shield around the primer column and a safety glass in front of the loading line. Both performed as designed, and the blast shield was destroyed in the first explosion, since it was a full column of primers.

I remember the post in #57, but don't remember what kind of press it was, since it was sometime back.

As for primer residue, it's yellow, and collects on automatic presses that load a lot of ammunition. Some machines are pretty rough on primers, jerking them back and forth in a primer slide, which is driven by an electric motor.

My incidents were first hand, and very personal. You can take it to the bank that primers will explode under some circumstances. I believe there is still a hole in the ceiling of the Kern County Sheriff's range house from that first explosion and the brass rod is somewhere up in that ceiling, since I never found it. That was in 1978, and I loaded roughly 160,000 rounds of .38 Special on that machine over the 2 1/2 years I was Rangemaster.

Hope this helps.

Fred

ranger335v
December 26, 2011, 08:06 PM
Priming compound is (usually) a yellowish cake and originally it did tend to produce a bit of explosive dust that could collect in auto priming tubes. I don't remember when the makers started sealing the compound with a lacqure like paint but that seems to have stopped the dusting a long time ago.

It's MUCH easier to ignite flammable vapors with a static discharge spark than it is to set off a primer.

I really don't know what the hazard of storing primers in a glass jar is but there are some and that's why primers don't come packaged in glass jars. THE safe storage solution is to leave them in the boxes designed for that job.

SlamFire1
December 26, 2011, 08:13 PM
The primer tube in post 57 came from a Hornday LNL. The original post was on the accuratereloading forum. http://forums.accuratereloading.com/groupee

If you enjoyed reading about "Primers in a jar?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!