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Large Pistol Primer Substitute

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by hinton03, Nov 7, 2009.

  1. hinton03

    hinton03 Active Member

    Apr 9, 2008
    Can't find large pistol primers anywhere. Can I use large rifle primers for 45 ACP?
  2. rfwobbly

    rfwobbly Senior Member

    Nov 14, 2008
    Cornelia, GA
    2 ways to go...
    • You can use large rifle IF your firing pin will strike the primer hard enough. Remember rifle primers are thicker. Some pistols won't fire them, but you can try.

    • You can use large magnum pistol, but you'll be REQUIRED to start over with your loads. Hotter primers need far less powder for the same pressure.

    However, I will tell you that primers are on the way. I was at a gun show today in Atlanta and at least 4 vendors had primers and they weren't running out. If you'd like to order primers, I understand Powder Valley has Wolf.

    Hope this helps!
  3. Offfhand

    Offfhand Participating Member

    Apr 12, 2009
    Wait until you get the correct primer. This is not the end pf time, they will be available soon.
  4. Beelzy

    Beelzy Member

    Aug 15, 2009

    Large rifle primers are taller than the pistol primers. They will not seat flush like they should.
  5. NCsmitty

    NCsmitty Mentor

    Jun 29, 2008
    North Carolina
    +1 on thicker cups.
    If you are using a near max charge of powder from a previous load session, it would be wise to back off a half grain or so. Large rifle primers tend to be a little hotter than LP.
    Just make sure they are seated properly, as some cases will show the LR primers above flush.

  6. fprefect

    fprefect New Member

    Aug 8, 2009
    Large Rifle Primers in Handguns

    If you have to have the ammunition I would agree with NCsmitty, particularly if the loads you were using were near maximum. It won't cost you that much time and money to load several rounds at lower charge weights and if you see signs of pressure, back off. I have had to use some small rifle primers in some pistol loads,(.357) but since they were only target loads I had no problems.

    But as an earlier poster pointed out, thinks are starting to loosen up a bit, not only on primers but powder and bullets as well. Finally did get some small pistol primers, some H-110 I've had on order for a month, 3 boxes of Hornady XTP bullet from 2 different suppliers, and even got 3 emails from Midway this past week advising me they had the item in stock that I was looking for that they were not accepting back orders on.

    It may only be a "flash in the pan", but I really doubt it. We may have to use some foreign made primers and ammo for a while,(I found some 32 APC ammo made in the Chech Republic for 12.95 for a box of 50 and of the 10 or 12 rounds I've shot so far, seemed to function satisfactorily. I'm just waiting to see how much the prices will fall once things back to some semblance of normal.

    F. Prefect
  7. jcwit

    jcwit Mentor

    Oct 19, 2007
    Great state of Indiana
    One more time and I realize this is because of the shortage of most primers out there. Do not sub Large Rifle primers for use in cartridges using Large Pistol primers. Reason why? The cup height is entirely different. Here is the cup heights for Large Rifle primers.

    CCI #200 .118
    #250 .118
    Federal #210 .117
    Remington #9 1/2 .119
    Winchester #LR .121
    #LR MAG .121

    Height of Large Pistol primer that I have on hand

    CCI #300 .110

    As you can see Large Rifle primers are any where from .007 to .011 thousands heigher. This will prevent the primer from seating flush to .003 thousands below flush which is ideal. This is to prevent slam fires in automatic pistols or it will keep the cylinder from turning in a revolver.

    With all of the above being said in the end you may do as you wish, just remember there might be other shooters in the area and then again it is your hand and body that may be injured. Ever see anyone injured by a slam fire? Not pretty. Usually the sight of blood means pain.
  8. hinton03

    hinton03 Active Member

    Apr 9, 2008
    Thanks for the help. I decided to wait and put 5K CCI large pistol on back order with Powder Valley.

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