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Thread: Pistol Primers

  1. #1

    Pistol Primers

    Hey y'all,

    I've been developing and loading wildcat rifle cartridges for quite some time now and I know what works best for me in rifle primers.

    I am a newbie to hand-loading pistol rounds and recently picked up a 550B to be more efficient than my T-7 will allow. What y'all's thoughts on choice of pistol primers? I will primarily be loading 9mm, with a few 40 S&W & 45 ACP thrown in occasionally.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Site Supporter GuanoLoco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RedfootRanch View Post
    Hey y'all,

    I've been developing and loading wildcat rifle cartridges for quite some time now and I know what works best for me in rifle primers.

    I am a newbie to hand-loading pistol rounds and recently picked up a 550B to be more efficient than my T-7 will allow. What y'all's thoughts on choice of pistol primers? I will primarily be loading 9mm, with a few 40 S&W & 45 ACP thrown in occasionally.

    Thanks!
    Depends on your goals. The primary considerations are usually primer cost, reliability and hardness. If you arenít into tuning light competition triggers, things are easier. If you are buying small quantity it doesnít matter. If you are loading in bulk then cost is a bigger consideration.

    CCI is a good place to start. Winchesters are softer and Federals softer still. This is good for lightly sprung guns. If you can tolerate harder primers there are lots of options that can save you a little $. If you are running higher pressure loads then the harder primers are less likely to flow or even pierce.

    What guns are you loading for, and are they stock or tooned to the edge?
    Are you now, or have you ever been a member of the Doodie Project?

  3. #3
    Site Supporter
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    Oct 2013
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    Canton GA
    For most of my pistol loading - 9mm, 40, and 45 - I used the cheapest primers I can get which normally - for me - is S&B and sometimes Tula. Had no issues lighting those off in my APEX'ed M&P 9mm's and multiple 1911s in 9, 40, and 45. If I have some form of tuned pistol I use Federals.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by GuanoLoco View Post
    Depends on your goals. The primary considerations are usually primer cost, reliability and hardness. If you arenít into tuning light competition triggers, things are easier. If you are buying small quantity it doesnít matter. If you are loading in bulk then cost is a bigger consideration.

    CCI is a good place to start. Winchesters are softer and Federals softer still. This is good for lightly sprung guns. If you can tolerate harder primers there are lots of options that can save you a little $. If you are running higher pressure loads then the harder primers are less likely to flow or even pierce.

    What guns are you loading for, and are they stock or tooned to the edge?
    My goals are to become effectively proficient from concealment. I tend to purchase components as cost-effectively as I can, once I know what I like.

    The primary guns are a G22 - run as 40 S&W for home protection/sometimes carried and also trained with running a Lone Wolf 9mm conversion barrel; and a G26 -primary carry pistol. Neither is completely stock nor tuned at the edge. Also loading for a stock Kimber 1911 chambered in 45 ACP.

  5. #5
    Site Supporter LtDave's Avatar
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    Feb 2011
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    Central AZ
    I use Winchester pistol primers almost exclusively with excellent results. I have a bunch of Remington, Federal, CCI and a couple other brands purchased during droughts, but keep coming back to Winchester.
    The first indication a bad guy should have that I'm dangerous is when his
    disembodied soul is looking down at his own corpse wondering what happened.

  6. #6
    Member
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    Sep 2015
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    Alabama
    I've only used Winchester and S&B. Winchester is softer but S&B is cheaper. If I can get more S&B I will. It makes for fine training ammo but I will keep Winchesters around for match ammo

    Sent from my Pixel 2 using Tapatalk

  7. #7
    Iíve used CCI, Winchester, Remington, and some Fiocchi when that was all I could find during the last component drought. They all have gone bang.

    HOWEVER, With the 550B, I prefer CCI. They seem more consistent in dimensions, and run smoother in the primer pickup tube and the primer mechanism. Winchesterís get sticky in my experience, and stuck primers can be a tricky thing.

  8. #8
    Site Supporter
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    Canton GA
    I have multiple Dillon 550s and almost exclusively load S&B - small pistol, large pistol, small rifle, large rifle - no issues using S&Bs in 550s for me.

  9. #9
    Member
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    Feb 2011
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    Allen, TX
    Quote Originally Posted by terk View Post
    Iíve used CCI, Winchester, Remington, and some Fiocchi when that was all I could find during the last component drought. They all have gone bang.

    HOWEVER, With the 550B, I prefer CCI. They seem more consistent in dimensions, and run smoother in the primer pickup tube and the primer mechanism. Winchesterís get sticky in my experience, and stuck primers can be a tricky thing.
    I have the same experience. I use CCI almost exclusively with best results. That belief held that they are harder than the other mainstream brands hasn't been true for many years. They light off very well, although the Federal Match primers are much softer.
    Regional Government Sales Manager for Aimpoint, Inc. USA
    Co-owner Hardwired Tactical Shooting (HiTS)

  10. #10
    I bought a large stash of Federal when I was shooting revo with the intention of just using them exclusively across the board in pistols. Then they got unobtainium and they are a bit pricey. I've used most of them now and am going to switch to Winchester as I've had good luck with them and they are generally available. I concur that CCIs run smoothest through the primer feed. Wolf and TULA are no bueno for me. I sold a case because they don't run smooth at all in the primer feed and I was having about 1 in 100 as dead that wouldn't even fire on a 2nd or 3rd strike. No more Wolf or TULA no matter how cheap and tempting they are, they're just not worth the hassle.

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