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  #1  
Old 03-28-2011, 12:07 PM
too_pure too_pure is offline
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What is the difference between large and small pistol primers?




I know this is an embarassing noob question. But although I do not reload now, I will, and I plan to start picking up supplies here and there when I see them, stocking up.

For now I know that I will be reloading .45ACP and .223/5.56 and 9mm. What size primers should I be getting?
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  #2  
Old 03-28-2011, 12:13 PM
Nick A Nick A is offline
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Sorry for the embarassing answer...

Don't you have books on reloading? They are absolutely essential.

They explain the different primers and what they're for.

It would be better to get self-educated BEFORE buying any components, friend.



Lyman, Hornady, Lee, Sierra, Speer, Nosler, ABC's of Reloading.

If nothing else, go to the web sites for manufacturers like Hornady, Alliant, etc., and look at their online tutorials for beginners.

Other manufacturers (like CCI) have special tutorials for primers.




In the United States and other geographic locations where 'boxer' primers are common, primers are made in two basic diameters - large and small - but different primers for pistol and rifle. And different primers for standard and magnum cartridges. They also make match or benchrest primers for competition, and special 'tough' primers for military type ammunition.
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  #3  
Old 03-28-2011, 12:23 PM
FLSlim FLSlim is offline
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I certainly echo the previous comment. Nothing magic about reloading, but start with a good educated foundation.
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  #4  
Old 03-28-2011, 12:27 PM
mikld mikld is offline
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Can't say it better than Nick. A library is an essential part of handloading (IMHO). I would start with The ABCs of Reloading and Lyman's Reloading Handbook. Then one or two from the maker of the bullets you'll be using (Hornady, Speer, etc) and the same for powders you'll be using (Hodgdon/Winchester, Aliant, etc.). I have a bunch of manuals and I refer back to the "how to" sections occationally just to keep some things straight. Personally, I don't pay much attention to any load data that I see on my 'puter screen; not from any forum or web site, as I rely on my manuals for my load data.

Reloading is one of the most rewarding parts of my shooting hobby and although it isn't rocket science, sloppy, wreckless practices can result in injury or even death

Go slow, triple check, and enjoy!
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  #5  
Old 03-28-2011, 12:36 PM
too_pure too_pure is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick A View Post
Don't you have books on reloading? They are absolutely essential.

They explain the different primers and what they're for.

It would be better to get self-educated BEFORE buying any components, friend.



Lyman, Hornady, Lee, Sierra, Speer, Nosler, ABC's of Reloading.

If nothing else, go to the web sites for manufacturers like Hornady, Alliant, etc., and look at their online tutorials for beginners.

Other manufacturers (like CCI) have special tutorials for primers.




In the United States and other geographic locations where 'boxer' primers are common, primers are made in two basic diameters - large and small - but different primers for pistol and rifle. And different primers for standard and magnum cartridges. They also make match or benchrest primers for competition, and special 'tough' primers for military type ammunition.
Okay then.

Here's another question. I don't know what brand my set-up will be. It will depend on price and availability. Is ABC's of reloading a "generic" reference that won't be rendered useless depending on what kind of hardware I get?
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  #6  
Old 03-28-2011, 12:39 PM
too_pure too_pure is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikld View Post
Then one or two from the maker of the bullets you'll be using (Hornady, Speer, etc) and the same for powders you'll be using (Hodgdon/Winchester, Aliant, etc.).
What brand do you guys recommend?
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  #7  
Old 03-28-2011, 12:47 PM
too_pure too_pure is offline
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I just went to Amazon and found this review of the book. Gives me pause. What say you?

Amazon Review (not me):I would like to start off by saying I bought this book knowing almost nothing about reloading. I had read little bits of information here and there on some forums. This book falls WAY short of what I expected. Yes, I realize this book is made for the basics of reloading but it is greatly lacking in anything other than common sense safety instructions, and the history of reloading from the EARLY 1900's.

I would say pay just a little more for a nice reloading book such as one by Hornady or The Lee reloading manual which gives you MANY reloading tips in addition to all the reloading information you could want. Also there are MANY video tutorials and reviews of reloading equipment out there on websites such as you-know-what TUBE that provide you with much better information than this book for FREE
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  #8  
Old 03-28-2011, 12:48 PM
Nick A Nick A is offline
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ABC's of Reloading is known as an excellent all-around book.
It contains no load data, just full and complete explanations of how-to.
It is highly recommended.

Since Lyman doesn't sell powder or bullets, their manuals are good because they don't try to push any specific powder or bullet. It is loaded with excellent load data. [Lyman has a book specifically on cast lead bullets, and one on pistol only, but since you're interested in 223 Rem you should get the current 49th Edition because it has both pistol and rifle data.]

Both manuals are fully usable with ANY brand of press.



Since January, there are about 10 threads on "what brand press should I buy". Unfortunately, most threads are somewhat useless, most guys just want you to buy the same press they have. But once you read through your books, the advice will make more sense.



Also, online load data is available from Hodgdon, Alliant, Accurate, and VihtaVuori. It is all very reliable.

Less reliable are other sites that are NOT owned by powder and/or bullet manufacturers. They are not always reliable because any Joe Shmoe, like you and me and our dogs, can post on them. Best to stick with the reliable data from REAL manufacturers.
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  #9  
Old 03-28-2011, 12:51 PM
Nick A Nick A is offline
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Nice lookng pistol in your signature line. How does she shoot?
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  #10  
Old 03-28-2011, 01:16 PM
too_pure too_pure is offline
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Thanks for the advice. I just went ahead and ordered ABC's of Reloading. I've been intending to start reloading for a while now. Time to get serious.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick A View Post
Nice lookng pistol in your signature line. How does she shoot?
Not enough... That's why I have to start reloading!

But seriously, thanks and I love that gun. Very nice on the hands, more accurate than me. Stock mags were worthless, but that's why it's got a 47D in it. Getting close to 1000 rounds and works like a charm.
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  #11  
Old 03-28-2011, 01:44 PM
Nick A Nick A is offline
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Cool. When you read the book, you will have questions. We will be glad to help.
And some day, you'll help other folks in return.
Especially your kids.
Good karma, this reloading thing.
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  #12  
Old 03-28-2011, 01:51 PM
RandyP RandyP is offline
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I found the ABC's book to be a fair page turner at best, and I borrowed from the local library rather than purchased it and am glad. Lots of history lessons and general background on guns and hunting, but nothing mot folks don't already know just from following shooting magazines over the years, or could read on forums like this one.

IMHO the LEE and Lyman manuals offer MUCH better practical info.
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  #13  
Old 03-28-2011, 02:38 PM
Hammerdown77 Hammerdown77 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RandyP View Post
IMHO the LEE and Lyman manuals offer MUCH better practical info.
This.

And, as much as it pains me to say it, there are some very good beginner's instructional videos on YouTube if you search. There's one series where the guy reviews a bunch of different presses, and shows how to set them up and load on them. Can't remember the name of the poster (something "reloader"), but they are professionally done videos and very good.

Hornady also has excellent instructional videos.

For load data, the powder manufacturers have reloading data centers on their web sites (I think Hodgdon and Accurate are the best), and the Lyman/Hornady/Lee/Speer manuals are excellent. Never can have too many sources.
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  #14  
Old 03-29-2011, 09:56 AM
mac266 mac266 is offline
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Primers are divided into three categories: Pistol, rifle, and shotgun.

Pistol and rifle primers are sub-divided into either small or large; thus, small pistol, large pistol, small rifle, and large rifle.

Each of those are sub-sub-divided into standard or magnum; thus, small pistol, small pistol magnum, large pistol, large pistol magnum, small rifle, small rifle magnum, large rifle, and large rifle magnum.

Get it?

Consult your load manual to select the correct one.

As to brands, there are as many opinions as there are reloaders. I like Winchester and Federal the best, but I'll use Remington if that's all is on the shelf. CCI is only for those "dry times" like the first few years of the Obama administration (they are made from a harder metal and my gamer springs don't always pop them).
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  #15  
Old 03-29-2011, 12:09 PM
barry7157 barry7157 is offline
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With .45 ACP, the majoriy of the brass takes a large pistol primer. However, if you get a hold of any Speer brass it will only take a small pistol primer. So beware and make sure that you separate your brass. Will save time when you start to prime.
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  #16  
Old 03-29-2011, 12:30 PM
SteedGun SteedGun is offline
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You can never have too many guns or books/magazines on reloading. I love the Hornady books, Hodgdon annual reloading guide (magazine) and others. In fact, right now I am reading the Big Fat Book of 45 which has a chapter on relaoding 45. All good stuff but I would start with the Hornady book.
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  #17  
Old 03-29-2011, 12:48 PM
Yard Sale Yard Sale is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by milefile View Post
I just went to Amazon and found this review of the book. Gives me pause. What say you?

Amazon Review (not me):I would like to start off by saying I bought this book knowing almost nothing about reloading. I had read little bits of information here and there on some forums. This book falls WAY short of what I expected. Yes, I realize this book is made for the basics of reloading but it is greatly lacking in anything other than common sense safety instructions, and the history of reloading from the EARLY 1900's.

I would say pay just a little more for a nice reloading book such as one by Hornady or The Lee reloading manual which gives you MANY reloading tips in addition to all the reloading information you could want. Also there are MANY video tutorials and reviews of reloading equipment out there on websites such as you-know-what TUBE that provide you with much better information than this book for FREE
What book was the review about?
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  #18  
Old 03-29-2011, 03:35 PM
Black wallnut Black wallnut is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yard Sale View Post
What book was the review about?
ABC's see http://www.amazon.com/ABCs-Reloading...ews/1440213968
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  #19  
Old 03-29-2011, 03:55 PM
buckhorn_cortez buckhorn_cortez is offline
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So far, you've gotten lectured and admonished for asking a perfectly reasonable question.

If you want information about primers, go here.

The rest of you might want to just chill out a bit, climb off your high horses and relax...the guy asked a simple question - I thought this place was supposed to be "helpful."
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  #20  
Old 03-29-2011, 04:06 PM
Comp42 Comp42 is offline
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I would advise you to pick up the Lyman 49th reloading manual. It has reference sections on all aspects of reloading.
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  #21  
Old 03-29-2011, 04:33 PM
Nick A Nick A is offline
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Sometimes the best help is tough love, buckhorn.
We helped him find his own resources that will serve him for decades.
I have a feeling he will be a good member here.
Some day he'll be helping new members when they need more help than they realize.

That link looks like a good one, buck.
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  #22  
Old 03-29-2011, 06:33 PM
RustyFN RustyFN is offline
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Quote:
What is the difference between large and small pistol primers?
One is bigger than the other, what did I win? Sorry I couldn't resist. Nothing else to add, a lot of good advice already.
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  #23  
Old 03-29-2011, 07:57 PM
too_pure too_pure is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buckhorn_cortez View Post
So far, you've gotten lectured and admonished for asking a perfectly reasonable question.

If you want information about primers, go here.

The rest of you might want to just chill out a bit, climb off your high horses and relax...the guy asked a simple question - I thought this place was supposed to be "helpful."
That's a great link. Thanks for that.

You know, a big part of my procrastination in reloading has been not having a place to do it. My garage has become a storage dump for eight years of kid junk... strollers, car seats, toys, bikes. And my garage is not very big to begin with. Over the past few weeks I've been gradually eliminating stuff, re-arranging other stuff, etc. Before kids, in my old house, I had a big open workbench all organized and it was like my own room. I miss it. I'm working back to that. It'll be smaller, and have a reloading press clamped on it.
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Pick up a rifle and you change instantly from a subject to a citizen. - Jeff Cooper
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  #24  
Old 03-30-2011, 02:38 PM
too_pure too_pure is offline
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Wow Amazon is fast. ABC's of Reloading arrived yesterday. It's a good read. I know some of what is in there, and what I don't know is very interesting. I can't think of anything gun related, no matter how rudimentary, that I am not fascinated by.

I think I'm going to change my original idea of buying a reloading set up that comes with everything and start picking up a piece here and a piece there, used if possible. I think I'll end up being able to afford better stuff that way.
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Prima di tutto, essere armati. - Niccolo Machiavelli
Pick up a rifle and you change instantly from a subject to a citizen. - Jeff Cooper
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  #25  
Old 03-31-2011, 12:51 AM
cz93x62 cz93x62 is offline
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That IS a gorgeous pistol, sir. It deserves good food, and home-grown.

RCBS tooling predominates on my reloading and casting benches, but other makes are present. I liked the Speer Reloading Manual #9 (my first) due to its largely non-technical descriptions of tooling and its functions. Plain language is a real help to new hobbyists. The fact that it featured the tooling easiest to find at that time (mid-1970s) didn't hurt any, either.

Primers for most calibers equipped with Boxer priming come in two diameters--small (.175") and large (.210"). There are two types of each diameter, rifle and pistol--we're up to 4 total. Each of those 4 classes have standard and magnum intensities, for a general total of 8 primer variants. There are sub-types among a few makers, but this is the general rule governing primers.
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