Re-using Primers from Crimped Cases


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Captaingyro
February 2, 2013, 09:11 AM
I bought a bunch of primed, unfired LC 7.62 cases that were previously loaded but had the bullets pulled. I intended to just load them up and shoot them, but it turns out the industrial bullet-pullers were a little rough on the cases, so they need to be resized. Problem is, there's residue from the pitch bullet sealant in the necks, and it tends to gum up the expander ball. I've decided that it's best to just de-prime them and go through the entire case-prep routine of cleaning, sizing, trimming, and primer-pocket treatment.

I hate to waste all those good, military magnum primers though. Has anyone ever attempted to use primers that have been removed after having been crimped in? I've de-primed a handful of the badly mangled cases, and the primers seemed to come out without much more force than un-crimped primers, but I still wonder if I'm pushing the anvil back too much. I know I could try loading them in a couple of test cases and see if they fired, but before I load a thousand of them I'd like to know if someone else has tried this. A ten or twenty percent failure rate would probably mean it's not worth it, but I could live with a couple of failures per hundred.

Also, I wonder if the potential for slam-fires is increased. If so, I have a couple of rifles without floating firing pins I could use them in.

What do you think?

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Sam1911
February 2, 2013, 09:13 AM
Crimped in primers sure may be damaged by pushing them back out. They tend to get distorted.

If they come out cleanly and without getting stretched/punched, I'd expect them to be just fine.

Walkalong
February 2, 2013, 09:17 AM
You can remove the decapping pin only from some sizers, leaving the expander. If your dies are this way, resize like that.

Captaingyro
February 2, 2013, 09:33 AM
I need to de-prime because I need to clean that tar out of the necks. It gums up the expander.

Soaking in mineral spirits has proven to be the fastest, easiest method to remove the tar, but it's not great for the primers.

I tried the Q-Tip method, but it's excrutiatingly slow, required one Q-Tip per case, and still tended to drip mineral spirits into the bottom of the case around the primer. Besides, my wife lost patience with the process after only a dozen cases. :D

JLDickmon
February 2, 2013, 09:42 AM
buh.....
universal decapper?

Captaingyro
February 2, 2013, 10:07 AM
Um...guys...please just read the original post. The question is about re-using primers that were originally crimped in.

I know all about removing the decapping pin. I know about de-capping dies. I know where babies come from. I know why the caged bird sings.

Now, how about re-using those primers?

(None of this applies to you of course, Sam1911...go to the head of the class).

USMAGator
February 2, 2013, 10:12 AM
Never tried it with crimped primers, but like Sam1911 said, if they come out cleanly without getting deformed I can't see any reason why you couldn't reuse them.

Sam1911
February 2, 2013, 10:18 AM
LOL! :)

I've had some primers that were crimped in get "tented" out as the decapping pin pressed them out. I've had some (PPU, I think) 9mm brass that simply DID NOT LET GO and were a pain to get out of the shell plate with a now stretched out primer still stuck fast in the case.

But if they press out cleanly, I'd use them, for sure. Might keep them separate from everything else, and may not use them for real critical loads, but I'd sure shoot them.

beatledog7
February 2, 2013, 11:00 AM
Seat a couple in sized cases, chamber, them, and fire (as discretely as possible). If they ignite, then the lot is probably good to go for practice rounds at least.

GLOOB
February 2, 2013, 07:49 PM
I need to de-prime because I need to clean that tar out of the necks. It gums up the expander.

I'd try removing the tar without getting solvent on the primers. Just set the cases sideways, use a brush dipped in solvent chucked in a drill. Let 'em dry on their side.

Other thing to consider is giving a Lyman M die a try. It might be able to do the job even with the tar left in place. It's hard to describe how much easier it is to expand a stubborn case with an M die. I suspect the conventional way of pulling the expander from inside out works fine only when strictly within a narrow range of dimensions, with relatively lubed brass. Outside of those confines, you get a chinese fingertrap. As the expander pulls on the case, it is stretching it, making the case neck constrict, making it harder to expand, which makes it stretch more... etc. Add a little "glue" to this equation, and you can end up nowhere, fast.

The M die pushes the expander in from the top. I use it on stubborn, thick brass, which my Hornady die sizes down a bit too much. Even with lube liberally applied, it's quite hard to pull the conventional expander through. It sticks and slips and crunches the whole way. It's 3 times harder than the sizing, and it feels like I'm overworking the necks. With the M die, I use no lube, and the expander glides in/out, effortlessly. Same diameter expander, but totally different result.

119er
February 2, 2013, 08:56 PM
I just went through the same trial as you. I deprimed and most were junked because the anvils popped out or the cup was dented outward. That and most of the priming compound was pushed to the periphery of the cup. Some deprimed easily and were salvageable. Most were screwed up. I rinsed my cases in Xylene and the tar and old powder came right out. There was a surprising amount of powder in the rinse pan.

What is interesting was that I tried sonic cleaning first with water and case cleaner, then they dried and I did the Xylene wash. The powder dried and I decided to see if it would burn after all that. It went right up in flames.

Ken70
February 2, 2013, 10:52 PM
Reusing primers forced out of crimped cases is not a good idea. Just think how much time you'll waste pulling down that ammo, and how much time you spent putting it together.

Didn't you ask about cleaning these cases a couple of months ago? I thought 1/2" of lacquer thinner in a glass or metal pan and dipping the mouth was the way to clean them.

rcmodel
February 2, 2013, 10:58 PM
To cap it off? (no pun intended).

Re-using punched out crimped military primers is a bad idea at best.

They can't be removed without damaging the anvil and the primer compound pellet seal.
Which was already damaged when they were seated the first time.

Don't.

If you want to use them?
Resize without the primer punch pin, and shoot them in place.
Then deal with the crimp after you shoot them.

And thats the bottom line!!

rc

jjjitters
February 2, 2013, 11:29 PM
I would stand them up on the mouth in a container of mineral spirits or whatever dissolves the tar . Let them sit for a day and take out, still upside down, set on something to drain / dry out. Maybe Q-tip wipe. Then expand and reload. I'd spend the time to clean as they are as opposed to trying to deprime.

A close hanger or similar wire(I've used 1/16" filler rod from my TIG welder) can be bent in a U to hang cases by their extractor groove.

rcmodel
February 2, 2013, 11:35 PM
And the evaporating solvent doesn't waft UP over the day and get in the primer compound anyway??

Hows that work??

Choot'm, or punch them out and throw them away.

rc

jjjitters
February 2, 2013, 11:54 PM
Nope won't kill them, I will bet on that one.

Fire_Moose
February 3, 2013, 01:15 AM
Tumble em

Sent from my CZ85 Combat

Andrew Leigh
February 3, 2013, 02:02 AM
For the effort vs. the price of primers I would trash them, resize and reprime with new. Even uncrimped primers have a failure rate when successfully deprimed.

thump_rrr
February 3, 2013, 07:09 AM
For the effort vs. the price of primers I would trash them, resize and reprime with new. Even uncrimped primers have a failure rate when successfully deprimed.
The problem this day and age may be the availability of primers in some areas of the USA.

Andrew Leigh
February 3, 2013, 07:12 AM
Aha, missed that one.

Captaingyro
February 3, 2013, 02:51 PM
There's some excellent input here, and I appreciate it.

119er, I suspected exactly what you reported. It looks like re-using the primers is out. I was hopeful because the primers came out of some of the damaged cases pretty easily, but I suspect the failure rate would make re-use more trouble than it's worth.

Ken70, it wasn't me who asked about cleaning earlier; I already know how to dissolve tar. The question was strictly about re-using primers. For what it's worth to everyone who suggested cleaning out the tar, it's certainly an option, but even dipping and drying 1000 cases is pretty labor intensive and time-consuming.

Fire_Moose: good thought. Tumbling was the first thing I tried. Guess what sticks to tar: corncob. What a mess.

I think at this point I have two options: just go ahead and deprime and toss the primers, or proceed with the sizing, tar and all. I already sized a hundred; that's when I discovered the fouled expander ball. To tell you the truth, though, cleaning the expander ball was easier than cleaning the cases.

Not sure which way I'll go yet; I really hate losing those primers in this market. I suppose I'll probably just bite the bullet (haarr), expand them with the tar in place, and pull the expander for cleaning every hundred or so.

mtrmn
February 3, 2013, 11:06 PM
I would remove the expanding ball and just run the cases thru the size die to bring the necks back down. Then seat bullets without the use of the expander ball. No-decapping/ruining perfectly good primers. Leave the tar alone.

Arkansas Paul
February 3, 2013, 11:47 PM
Even uncrimped primers have a failure rate when successfully deprimed.

It must be a VERY low failure rate because I've done it countless times and never had one fail to go boom.

Crimped primers are a different animal altogether, and I agree with the posters who say it's not a great idea.

I'll probably just bite the bullet (haarr), expand them with the tar in place, and pull the expander for cleaning every hundred or so.

That's what I would do as well. That tar will come out just fine when you pull the trigger. :)

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