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Hand Priming Tools

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by 9mmepiphany, Apr 22, 2014.

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  1. stubbicatt

    stubbicatt Member

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    I bought a Lee Autoprime in the 80's, and used it for many years without any explosions, it would occasionally cock a primer or seat one upside down. This causes intestinal distress as if one of those primers goes off...

    I bought a RCBS APS hand priming tool. It took a little while to get used to it, and I experience fatigue a little sooner with that tool. Nonetheless, NO cocked primers or upside down primers, which, for me at least, cause more aggravation than the 3 cent pellet is worth.

    I feel that the RCBS APS tool is a better tool than the Lee, but you pretty much have to buy a strip loader these days, so altogether it is not a cheap expenditure.
     
  2. W.E.G.

    W.E.G. Member

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    My universal-chuck RCBS tool seats primers to only 0.001" below flush.

    The new" version of the Lee tool does the same.

    The "old" version of the Lee tool seats to 0.004" below flush.

    I measured some factory-loaded Federal M193 with LC 01 brass, and all the primers are 0.004" below flush.

    The old Lee tools are selling at significant premium on eBay.
    That should tell you something.
     
  3. sexybeast

    sexybeast Member

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    I've never used the lee because i did not want to buy different shell holders. I bought the RCBS and use my shell holders. I prime 25k/year and love it, all different calibers too. Great feel and even crimped cases can be primed with it. A friend has the RCBS Universal but all he primes is 45. He's happy with it. RCBS will back it up too! Lyman makes one too and they usually make good stuff.
    I prime in the evening while relaxing and watching tv. Gives you a chance to also take a glance of each case and cull out the 380's which drive me crazy mixed in with my 9mm.
     
  4. germ

    germ Member

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    I have two RCBS Universal's - one for large and the other for small. I also have the APS strip model which I like a lot. If I ever have cash burning a hole in my pocket, I'll get a second one of them too. If I find myself in the market for another progressive, the APS system alone would have me taking a very serious look at a Pro 2000! Never cared for the Lee's, and I broke the thumb lever with nearly zero effort. My LCT is great at priming though!
     
  5. GW Staar

    GW Staar Member

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    My Universal seats primers depending how deep my primer pockets are, usually .005, after being uniformed in my Trim Mate. Today I pressed one to where I felt it bottomed....in a clean uniformed pocket and it measured .005". I put it back in and pressed harder (probably crushing a tiny bit) and measured .007". (LR CCI's)

    So I'd say yours either had shallow pockets, or you have a faulty tool. .001" max? That's not typical of RCBS Universals....I can crush them more if I want....010" easy....maybe more.

    Besides pocket depth, another variable is primer brand ....they do vary in depth a little. So to hit a depth below flush target, you have to prep the brass taking in consideration primer depth.
     
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2014
  6. fiftybmg

    fiftybmg member

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    Used to have a Lee. It was a bit small for my hands, and uncomfortable over extended use. I also managed to break some part - can't remember which. Sold it and bought a Hornady hand prime.

    Works great. It's not possible to break it during normal use.
     
  7. horseman1

    horseman1 Member

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    That's true. But under abnormal abuse, the tray can break under the weight of a football players foot after it is knocked off the end table :). Don't ask how I know this... Maybe I will just buy a new tray from Hornady. I would not expect nor allow this to be covered under warranty.
     
  8. jerkface11

    jerkface11 Member

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    I've used lee and rcbs and the rcbs requires far less force to use. Plus the offer a model that uses spring loaded jaws instead of shell holders.
     
  9. keelbolts

    keelbolts Member

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    I'm going to register my vote for the RCBS hand-priming tool. All of my handgun reloading gear is Lee, but I prefer the RCBS for priming. It's more comfortable to use than me old Lee with the flat paddle.
     
  10. floydster

    floydster Member

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    All this talk about 0.001"-0.005" below flush is all nonsense, seat the primers till they don't go any farther, period.
    And I hand prime all my rounds, that's all I'm saying about that:)
     
  11. inline4

    inline4 Member

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    such as?
     
  12. GW Staar

    GW Staar Member

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    Speaking of tricks, Tom McHale has a trick to using the Lee hand primer.:) (on outdoorhub.com) I think Lee is moving in a better direction with their "Ergo" version....where you use 4 fingers rather than 1 thumb to do all the work....more like RCBS's offerings.

    Reloading-Priming-Step-3-800x370.jpg

    Its pretty easy to crush a primer....even with a hand primer. I think you are saying seat until you feel it touch bottom ...right? As for nonsense....that's a matter of opinion. IMO knowing the relationship with the primers I choose to use, to the cases I choose to use (and the depth of both pockets and primers chosen), and to the tool I prime with, makes it worth it to me to measure. Especially since some Gas guns are sensitive to primer depth and have both minimum and maximum depths that either prevent slam fires, or no fires.
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2014
  13. oldfortyfiveauto

    oldfortyfiveauto Member

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    The Forester is the one to beat. It's easiest on the hands and works great.
     
  14. GW Staar

    GW Staar Member

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    To each their own....to be sure.;) For me loading tubes is moving backwards...I love the speedy preloaded APS strips. After watching Forester's video I thought they needed a bench mount for the tool (not really a hand-held tool), and I wasn't real impressed with the tube loading method. "One to beat?" I guess you're not talking about speed. The leverage of the tool is effortless it appears, but then you have to weigh the argument, when does leverage cancel "feel". Well built tool to be sure.....one just has to decide what he needs/wants a hand primer or a bench primer. BTW you can also buy an APS bench primer....been tempted.
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2014
  15. jsab9191

    jsab9191 Member

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    RCBS bench primer

    I've used the RCBS bench priming tool for the last few years . I've also used the Lee's hand primer and RCBS's hand priming tool and for ease of use , speed, and feel the RCBS bench mounted primer is hard to beat.
     
  16. RainDodger

    RainDodger Member

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    I have not seen Sinclair's hand primer mentioned yet. Anyone got one? It's expensive, but it looks very nice indeed. I'd love to hear a report on that one.
     
  17. GW Staar

    GW Staar Member

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    It's super duper if you get off on picking up a primer by hand and placing it one at a time into the tool, inserting a case, prime......repeat.

    It's also the super ultimate status symbol among benchresters.

    With my RCBS APS Universal, I never touch a primer and I like it like that. I do have a 35 year old Lee, that works exactly the same as the Sinclair....one at a time.....it's a collectors item....probably worth more than the Sinclair....not nearly as pretty though...definitely not stainless steel forged!:)

    Ah, found a picture of the old Lee. (upper left hand corner)
    IMG_0906.jpg
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2014
  18. Elkins45

    Elkins45 Member

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    Ooohhh...that's the target model. Nice!

    Is that a neck reamer?
     
  19. murf

    murf Member

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    i use the lee autoprime. i have always used my fingers to press the lever. if i'm doing a large quantity i use a glove.

    murf
     
  20. GW Staar

    GW Staar Member

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    Yes. That Target Model Lee Loader gave me the first 1 hole 100 yard 4 shot group I ever did...out of a Remington Mohawk 600 no less in .243, using Winchester brass & primers, sierra 100 grain bullets and Winchester 760 powder.......40+ years ago.:) Then I bought a Rock Chucker and never used it again....why? Well, I didn't go the benchrest branch of the hobby. I should try it out again, huh?:eek:
     
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