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Do you prime off the press?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Dewey 68, Mar 11, 2019.

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Do you prime on or off press?

  1. On

    38 vote(s)
    26.4%
  2. Off

    70 vote(s)
    48.6%
  3. Both

    36 vote(s)
    25.0%
  1. Dewey 68

    Dewey 68 Member

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2010
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    Location:
    Corrupt Illinois
    I load on a Lee Pro 1000, and the biggest problem I would run into was the shellplate getting out of time and primers tipping and then having to clean up spilled powder, try to reset the shellplate timing and clean up the primer situation and remove the cases that were being processed and start a fresh case. I bought a Lee universal decapping die and a hand primer and now prime off the press. I've also purchased a FART and can now have nice clean primer pockets as well since I tumble after decapping.

    I'm now perfectly happy with the Lee Pro 1000 since I only load for hand guns currently so I'm fine with only 3 places for dies.

    I'm curious who primes on and off press and, what type of press people are using to see which ones are more prone to priming issues.

    The Mods have added "both" so feel free to change your vote.
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2019
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  2. bullseye308

    bullseye308 Member

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    I’ve been hand priming for years. I had some trouble on my Loadmaster with primers many years ago and got it working, but continued to hand prime anyway.
     
  3. HDMontana

    HDMontana Member

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    Jan 22, 2018
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    Montana
    I hand prime for rifle and prime on press for handgun. I have been using a Lee classic turret for a press. I use the auto advance for pistol but use it as a single stage for rifle.
     
    Cemetery21 likes this.
  4. dh1633pm

    dh1633pm Member

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    Priming on the Co-Ax would be way too slow. Hand prime all the way.
     
  5. Typetwelve

    Typetwelve Member

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    Mar 1, 2019
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    121
    So far all I've primed is 38 and 44 special on my 550...but I'd be lying if I didn't say it can be a bit touchy. If you don't have the shell plate index 100% perfect, the primer won't seat properly. Because of this, I decided to just prime all my cases in one session, then load them later. It seemed to work better that way.

    If the priming stage continues to be flaky...I may land up just buying a hand priming tool.
     
  6. Col. Harrumph

    Col. Harrumph Member

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    Noo Hamsher
    I started with the Rock Chucker's native priming tool without the optional extra cost auto-feeder. Experienced quite a few (as in more than 0) duds due to primers rendered inert by skin oil. Went to a Lee hand primer but after 2-3 hunnert squeezes my thumb started to get tired. Couldn't switch thumbs either because I was sucking the other one (I started young). Nowadays I use the RCBS bench-mount primer and like it very much. It's almost as easy as when your wife does the priming.
     
  7. 375supermag

    375supermag Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2013
    Messages:
    633
    Location:
    Southcentral Pennsylvania
    Hi...
    Most of my reloading has been done with single stage presses.
    I started with a Lee please back in the day and primed with an RCBS hand priming unit.
    I "thought" I had upgraded to a Lee 1000 progressive press, but soon realized all I had done was introduce frustration in the form of misfeed primers and spilled powder to the task of reloading.

    I then acquired an RCBS RockChucker press and Little Dandy Pistol Powder measure and resumed priming with the RCBS hand primer.
    All was well in my reloading world.

    And then, one day, RCBS introduced the APS bench mounted priming tool using primer loaded strips. I have primed many thousands of rounds with this tool over the years and am completely satisfied with it. It does have it's idiosyncrasies and issues but it generally works very well. I like it so much that I bought a press mounted version just in case the bench mounted system breaks and I can't get it repaired.
    I do prime on my Hornady LNL progressive presses when loading the cartridges that my son and I shoot in large quantities. I recently acquired a Dillon 550 progressive press and will prime on that press for a couple of more cartridges once I get it set up and decide what calibers we will use it for.
    Right now, we load .45ACP and .357Mag on the Hornady units and will be loading 10mm and .38Spl on them once I get a couple more Hornady powder measures to set up to dispense my preferred load. I want to set them up and then not have to mess with them anymore.
    The Dillon will probably become a dedicated press for my son's 9mm reloading at first. I am certain that all of those cases will be primed on press.

    I do highly recommend the RCBS APS priming system...it works well. The biggest issue is the red plastic bushing inserts that guide the primer into the case. They do wear and become a bit brittle with age. I generally call RCBS and they send me a handful at no charge. The primer strips also wear but they do last a very long time. I have only ever damaged a single strip over the years by accidentally misaligning it in the strip loader.
     
  8. Muddydogs

    Muddydogs Member

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2011
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    619
    Anything I load on the Hornady AP gets primed on the press. I took the time to figure out how to time my press so it works as it should. One needs to be aware that when switching shell plates the timing might be a little off so adjustments need to be made. Most of my shell plates run about the same but my 223 plate is a little off and I have to adjust the left pawl about 1/16" inch right to stop it from rotating to far then springing back.
     
    DRAINSMITH likes this.
  9. Obturation
    • Contributing Member

    Obturation Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2018
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    722
    Location:
    Northern illinois
    I prime off press because i get a much better feel for loose pockets, misalignment or any other issues. I just like to have a better idea of whats going on with my production and reject cases with anything abnormal. Tough to do on a progressive press with so much going on and even on a single stage the leverage advantage can make it tough to feel minor differences.
     
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  10. forty_caliber
    • Contributing Member

    forty_caliber Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2019
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    Location:
    Republic of Texas
    I prime match rifle rounds on the Lyman AA8 turret press with a Lyman ram prime system, 1 at a time. I like the feedback and uniformity that it offers.

    I prime pistol on the LNL AP with the built in priming system. Once adjusted and polished, this is works remarkably well. The only downfall with this system is that it must be kept very clean. Any foreign objects (powder, etc) between the end of the shoe and the subplate can cause a primer delivery issues and rough operation.

    .40
     
  11. mcb

    mcb Member

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    Feb 19, 2008
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    North Alabama
    I currently do not have a way to primer off the press. My Dillon 650 has never given me issue priming small/larger rifle/pistol. I do size and trim my rifle cases as a separate operation but the resized cases go in the case feeder and all the loading happens on press. Pistol cases get everything done continuously on press.
     
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  12. ATLDave

    ATLDave Member

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    I have two ways to prime: on my Lee Classic Turret and on my Dillon 650. Both of them work well.
     
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  13. lightman

    lightman Member

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    england,ar
    I mostly hand prime with a Sinclair tool. But I do prime on my 550 and I have primed on my Rockchucker.
     
  14. Toprudder

    Toprudder Member

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    Raleigh, NC
    Prime on my Dillon 550 (semi-auto pistol) or Lee LCT.
     
  15. Jeff H

    Jeff H Member

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    Ohio
    Prime on the press. There is a reason I bough a progressive and it wasn't to slow down and hand prime.
     
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  16. bbqreloader
    • Contributing Member

    bbqreloader Contributing Member

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    Jan 5, 2016
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    Location:
    Colorado
    Prime off, due to time constraints, easier for me to load up some MTM's and set aside. When I can have a reloading session, I just get going making rounds.
     
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  17. Reeferman

    Reeferman Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Messages:
    769
    Anything loaded on my LNL gets primed on it. Anything loaded on my Rockchucker gets primed with RCBS hand primer.
     
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  18. Charlie98

    Charlie98 Member

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    Both. All my handgun rounds get primed on the ProJector progressive, virtually all of my rifle cartridges get primed via an RCBS Universal. In my case, many of the rifle cartridges are going into an autoloader (AR, M1, M1a) and I must insure the primers are seated fully to avoid the potential of a slam fire.
     
  19. Zendude
    • Contributing Member

    Zendude Contributing Member

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    Depends on the cartridge. I prime on the press for 9mm and 380. The Lee 1000 doesn’t have enough stations (only 3) for a powder check die without removing something else. So for cases like 38 special where I can’t see the powder, I decap, resize, and prime off the 1000 so that i can use a powder check die with the powder drop/flare die and the seating/crimp die.
     
  20. NapalmMan67

    NapalmMan67 Member

    Joined:
    May 2, 2013
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    233
    Location:
    With an old lady in her shoe.
    Recently had issue with the Safety Prime system on my LCT... did not look in to why it wasn't working properly yet. Primed 400+ .38 Special cases with the old standby RCBS hand primer.

    Never have had to hand prime anything that went through the 650XL.


    .
     
  21. glc24
    • Contributing Member

    glc24 Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2011
    Messages:
    330
    Location:
    Beaver Falls PA.
    I started out doing priming on my 550B. It was pistol only though. When I built my 5.56 AR, I hand primed. Then I thought about how fast I pumped out rounds. Not fast at all! I started hand priming everything last year. I actually enjoy hand priming! I am in no hurry for round count! I do my pistol loads on my 550B, and my 5.56 loads on a Lee 4 hole. Maybe I'll change, but right now, I'm happy!:)
     
  22. Dewey 68

    Dewey 68 Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Corrupt Illinois
    Looks like I needed to add a "both" category in my poll, but I can't now. A couple of nice things about hand priming is I can do it while watching TV and it's a good time to inspect cases for splits or other issues. If I were shooting more and needed to crank out more ammo, I'd be looking at a new press with a more reliable priming mechanism but for now I'm happy with the Pro 1000 now that I'm not priming on it.

    Edit: Mods have added "both" to the poll so feel free to change your answer.
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2019
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  23. hdbiker

    hdbiker Member

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    Jun 1, 2011
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    629
    I'm still priming with my old original Lee Hand Priming Tool. The one with the screw in shell holders. its small and very handy to use watching TV LOL. hdbiker
     
  24. rayatphonix

    rayatphonix Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2011
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    Location:
    WNC
    I use the RCBS priming system. Very happy. I might do it differently if I had a progressive press though.
     
  25. cfullgraf

    cfullgraf Member

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    I prime off the press whether progressive or single stage. I prefer to clean the case after sizing and before reloading so I have the opportunity to prime by whatever method I choose.

    Besides, I can never get a priming system, whether press mounted or off press, to be 100% reliable. So priming off the press affords me the opportunity to correct the priming problem before I stuff powder and a bullet in the case.

    I hate re-work if I can avoid it.
     
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