how to reload Berdan cases


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poor man
February 20, 2013, 01:06 PM
i was searching the net like always and i ran across this and thought with the cost of ammo going up this might be an idea,,, for people with time on there hands......

PS: yes i know this is doing a rifle case but a pistol casr should be the same.. right??


http://www.surplusrifleforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=78&t=90109

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RandyP
February 20, 2013, 01:16 PM
I would put this in the category of last ditch survival reloading. Boxer primed brass is still available, and for most of us reloaders I suspect we possess a lifetime supply already -lol - presuming we shoot where we can reclaim our own fired casings.

That is not to say that Berdan primed brass is useless......it can be sold for scrap to buy standard components.

poor man
February 20, 2013, 01:20 PM
i understand what you are saying, ive seen people spend way too much time trying to save old brass of any kind before LOL

one question for me... how do you tell what primer in used from looking at the outside of the bullet??? ive looked at both types and i dont see any difference from the outside....

fallout mike
February 20, 2013, 01:22 PM
Your regular dies won't deprime berdan primers.

rcmodel
February 20, 2013, 01:54 PM
how do you tell what primer in used from looking at the outside of the bullet???You can't tell until you shoot it.

Then you can look inside the case and easily tell which it is.

Boxer primed cases have one centrally located flash hole.

Berdan primed cases have two or more small off-center flash holes.

Boxer primers have their own anvil in the primer.

Berdan cases are made with the anvil as part of the case.

There are several drawbacks to trying to reload Berdan brass.
First, they are hard to deprime, because you can't deprime with the sizing die.

Second, finding a reliable source of Berdan primers in the U.S. is nearly impossible.
Not to mention they come in about 20 different sizes.
rc

poor man
February 20, 2013, 02:17 PM
thanks

45lcshooter
February 20, 2013, 02:19 PM
after the round is shot. RCBS makes a decapper for Berdan cases. after its decapped most people take a drill bit and make a jig to make a hole to turn it into boxer brass. if you have the time and the decapper you can use forgein brass all you want with your domestic brass.

it would save it from being scrapped.

Shmackey
February 20, 2013, 03:00 PM
Powder Valley has bricks of Berdan primers in stock for those who would reload Berdan cases and/or spin their own flax to make clothing.

rcmodel
February 20, 2013, 03:06 PM
But are they the size you need??

Like I said, there are about 20 different sizes of berdan primers.

Heres a good read on it:
http://www.dave-cushman.net/shot/berdan_supplies_dimensions.html

rc

Shmackey
February 20, 2013, 03:14 PM
Absolutely correct. There are more than a dozen kinds out there. The x39 ones from PV make sense. I couldn't tell you who has Berdan-primed 7.62 NATO brass lying around. :)

returningfire
February 20, 2013, 03:22 PM
Until there is no boxer brass anywhere to be had at any price it is just not worth it.

parker51
February 20, 2013, 07:24 PM
It only takes a few seconds longer per round to reload Swiss GP-11 brass than it does boxer primed brass once you have the right tools. I have been reloading GP-11 brass for about 9 years now and have loaded over 7,000 rounds of GP-11 brass. I use two tools for removing the primers, a RCBS Berdan primer removal tool and a tool made by a fellow in Virginia called Bill's Berdan Decapper (a .308 steel rod and a metal base to hold the brass when removing the primer). Not trying to talk anyone in to reloading this brass, just want you to know that it isn't as difficult as some make it out to be. It takes about 3 seconds to fill the case with water and hit the rod with a hammer causing the primer to shoot out a hole drilled in the base of Bill's tool. I lost track of Bill when I moved back to WV so I can't tell you if these tools are still available. A similar one should be easy to make if you have access to a metal lathe. I only reload for the Swiss at this time but would like to find some Swede brass to try since the primers I have for the Swill will also work in the Swedish brass. The primers I am using now for the Swiss GP-11 are KV762N Large Rifle Berdan Primers and can be found at http://www.dagammo.com/shop/.

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=180090&stc=1&d=1361402245

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=180091&stc=1&d=1361402245

parker51
February 20, 2013, 07:31 PM
Here are some photos of Bill's Berdan Decapper Tool

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=179127&d=1360028471

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=179128&d=1360028471

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=179129&d=1360028486

FROGO207
February 20, 2013, 10:17 PM
I use those same primers in the 308 Nato Berdan primed brass I have as are used in the GP 11. I purchased my last batch at Powder Valley last fall.

KansasSasquatch
February 21, 2013, 02:22 AM
I'll just leave this here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=endscreen&NR=1&v=GwmmsZ-aX4g

Shrinkmd
February 22, 2013, 01:31 AM
Anyplace the Bill's is for sale? I've heard so many bad things about the RCBS tool, and I'd love to give it a try.

parker51
February 22, 2013, 01:51 PM
Anyplace the Bill's is for sale? I've heard so many bad things about the RCBS tool, and I'd love to give it a try.

I may be wrong, but I think he only made a handful of these decappers. He worked at the Armory in Virginia Beach, VA at the time and I know they had a couple hanging on a peg for sale but this was probably 8 to 10 years ago. The last time I visited the Armory Bill no longer worked there and I was told he had moved out west. You might try contacting the Armory to see if they have any way of reaching Bill. If I had access to the tools it shouldn't be that difficult to make a similar tool. The base wouldn't have to be round, it could be square. I have heard of some folks using a standard socket for a base. I believe I would make a square one if I was to make one. Not sure where to find .308 steel rod stock as the one I have was turned down from .314 to .308 for first inch from the tip of the rod. The base has 3 holes drilled in it, the one that the brass sets in is just large enough for the case to fit with a smaller hole drilled at the bottom in the center (large enough for the primer to exit the brass) that connects to the hole drilled in the side of the base where the primer exits. You can get aluminum rod stock from Grainer for the base if you could find someone to make the rod.

http://www.grainger.com/Grainger/aluminum-rod-stock/aluminum/raw-materials/ecatalog/N-c0h/No-16?Ndr=basedimid10071&sst=subset

I would recommend the 1 5/8" x 1' for the base.

Sorry I couldn't be more help.

TonyT
February 22, 2013, 03:31 PM
poor man.
Based on personnal experience the answer to your question is = WITH GREAT DIFFICCULTY.
Many years ago I reloaded Berdan primer 8x68S brass since it was the only brass available in that caliber. Once they made Boxer primed brass available I discarded the Berdan primed brass and bever looked back.
Reloading Berdan primed cases is a pain in the neck. I have never tried the hydraulic method. I used a tool to pierce the primer and remove it from the case. The cases could be reloaded 1 or 2 times before one damaged the internal nipple in the primer pocket.

TonyT
February 22, 2013, 03:36 PM
poor man.
Based on personnal experience the answer to your question is = WITH GREAT DIFFICCULTY.
Many years ago I reloaded Berdan primer 8x68S brass since it was the only brass available in that caliber. Once they made Boxer primed brass available I discarded the Berdan primed brass and bever looked back. I also had a Peabody-Martini single shot in 40-70 Peabody What Cheer and was able to form brass from Berdan primed 43 Egyption cases - I finally opted for Boxer primed 50-70 brass of making those cases.
Reloading Berdan primed cases is a pain in the neck. I have never tried the hydraulic method. I used a tool to pierce the primer and remove it from the case. The cases could be reloaded 1 or 2 times before one damaged the internal nipple in the primer pocket.
The other issue is that Berdan primers come in an assortment of sizes. I remeber that the two cases cited used different sized Berdan primers.

KansasSasquatch
February 22, 2013, 03:44 PM
If you want to reload berdan primed ammo or convert it to boxer primed, just look up mainejunker on YouTube. It doesn't seem like it is for the beginning reloader though!! It also is more time consuming. But if you are desperate or frugal, it can definitely be done. In one video he uses boxer primers to reload 7.62x39 steel cases. In doing so he removes the anvil from the boxer primers, not something I would do when Powder Valley has the proper sized Berdan primers available, because it could be a real safety hazard.

Glennx39
March 1, 2013, 01:30 AM
Reloading berdan isn't as time consuming as some say. I honestly decap with a cordless drill with my smallest bit and a tiny metal punch. Yeah that sounds crazy, but I suprised myself when I first started practicing on wolf steel cased ammo. I didn't gouge our mess up the primer pocket or anvil. When you're drilling through the primer to get a prying hole, just do it off center to not hit the anvil. Stopping the drill is similar to drilling through a piece of wood. When you feel the bit start to catch really aggressively you know you're about to punch through just like in wood. Then you stop and stick a small punch in and pry it out. It takes me about ten seconds to deprime one round, but yeah that's ten times longer than boxer primed brass. So it's not gonna take you 10 minutes for one round. I think it's a great way to make some super inexpensive high quality hunting rounds with great bullets.

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