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Removing crimped primers.

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by lordgroom, Apr 27, 2008.

  1. lordgroom

    lordgroom Well-Known Member

    How can I remove a crimped primer? I have some brass that my Lee Universal Deprime die cannot remove the primer. The decap rod "breakaway" is activated. How can I still use this brass.

    I know that reaming or swaging will remove the crimp, but what about the primer?
  2. Shoney

    Shoney Well-Known Member

    First, have you verified what type of primer is installed, boxer or berdan????

    Is it live or has it been fired???????
  3. jpwilly

    jpwilly Well-Known Member

    I use the Lee decapping die too but I tighten it down with a small ratchet and have no problems decapping crimped primers. Getting in new primers will require you to swage the primer pocket.
  4. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam


    Tighten the collet nut until it squeeks and it will take out any crimped primer ever made!
    (Except Berdan)

    If the rods slipping, you haven't tightened the nut enough.

  5. GearHead_1

    GearHead_1 Well-Known Member

    I've never found a Boxer primed case that my Lee die wouldn't remove. That said I have mistaken what I thought was a boxer primed case for one that was Bermudan primed. It of course pushed the decapping pin out of the die. I started thinking about this scenario after I had made my initial response. I have from time to time found some cases that didn't have the primer hole centered, this wasn't visible looking at the case from the bottom. The ones that specifically come to mind were some Winchester .308 cases. I guess that goes to show you even a name brand can have problems. Wiggling the case side to side for the decappping pin to drop into the primer pocket seemed to help.
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2008
  6. Soybomb

    Soybomb Well-Known Member

    I spent several frustrating minutes trying to make mine work on some rorg 5.56 cases. In the end I think my problem was a comination of two things. I was letting the case cock slightly as it went into the die potentially missing the flash hole and I also really tightened down the collet nut.
  7. USSR

    USSR Well-Known Member


    Your universal decapping die should remove a crimped boxer primer. Sounds like you might have berdan primed brass. Shine a light down the inside of the case and count the number of small "holes" you see on the back end of the primer. One small hole in the center is a boxer primer; two small holes is a berdan primer, and you will not be able to remove it with your decapping pin.

  8. lordgroom

    lordgroom Well-Known Member

    Thank you all. It is Berdan Primed (2 holes). Don, thanks for the instructions on how to tell if it is Berdan primed.
  9. strat81

    strat81 Well-Known Member

    Of all the 5.56/.223 cases I've encountered, RORG cases (Radway Green) have been the hardest to decap. As stated, just tighten that collet! If possible, use a universal decapping die, not your sizing die. At first, I thought the resistance I was getting was from lack of lube (and possibly earning me a stuck case). Since stuck cases are teh suck, it is worth it to decap in a universal die, then resize and process as normal.
  10. GearHead_1

    GearHead_1 Well-Known Member

    It's obvious from the replies here that you're not the first guy to make that mistake.;)

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