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Unread 01-04-2021, 10:17 PM   #1
lugerholsterrepair
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Default What's with small primer 45"s?

Been reloading for years and never ran across small primer 45 shells. Now I have gobs of them. Blazer & federal. When did this start and the bigger question, why pollute the 45 with multiple size primer holes? VERY inconvenient.
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Unread 01-04-2021, 11:31 PM   #2
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From what I have read the small primers are lead-free.
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Unread 01-05-2021, 02:31 AM   #3
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I'm with you, Jerry. I don't like them.

I've picked up range brass in .45ACP that have small primer pockets. I have no idea why they make them but I won't use them. They get tossed. I have enough LP cases that I won't fool with SP cases.
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Unread 01-05-2021, 10:35 AM   #4
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I routinely recycle range brass from my club. For the past several years, I've found small primer .45ACP brass regularly salting my "take" from "brass ratting".

At first, with disgust, I discarded them. It requires close inspection during sorting and cleaning, and again during actual reloading in case I missed one. My miss rate is probably under 1 percent.

About 2 years ago, I started holding onto them (I've probably got 300 or 400 right now). Why? Because of the potential for market demand like we've seen in the past year, and the possibility of running out of large pistol primers.

just finished reloading several thousand rounds of pistol ammo in 9mm, .40 S&W, .45acp and .38 special. This time of winter is my favorite for reloading ammo which then usually lasts the rest of the year.

My brass is, thankfully, free from our club range. I routinely stock primers, powder and bullets - and try to buy in bulk when supplies are in surplus in between the social panic runs.

I teach reloading every August for our club. NRA Certified courses. and have been reasonably well equipped for more than a decade, but this past year decided to buy one of the rotary tumblers that uses wet stainless steel pins. This process makes the brass look like it just left the factory - and is well worth using. This requires an extra step to size and decap brass prior to cleaning, but then even the primer pockets shine.

When I get a full load (500 or so) I'll run the small primer .45acp through the process. Until then, I have still got enough large pistol primers...
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Unread 01-05-2021, 11:09 AM   #5
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They've been around for quite a while now. Yes, they're a pain, but I still recycle and shoot them.
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Unread 01-05-2021, 01:32 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrerick View Post
... but this past year decided to buy one of the rotary tumblers that uses wet stainless steel pins. This process makes the brass look like it just left the factory - and is well worth using. This requires an extra step to size and decap brass prior to cleaning, but then even the primer pockets shine.
I also use the SS pin wet cleaning method but do not resize prior. I have a Lee decapping die and remove primers but don't resize until the cases are squeeky clean.
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Unread 01-05-2021, 02:42 PM   #7
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I don't resize until the cases are squeeky clean.


I find that resizing cases dirties/scrapes/marks them. I re size then clean and punch primers.
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Unread 01-05-2021, 03:15 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lugerholsterrepair View Post
I don't resize until the cases are squeeky clean.


I find that resizing cases dirties/scrapes/marks them. I re size then clean and punch primers.
Each person decides what works best for them.

With the wet SS pin method, it helps to deprime the cases first as that allows the pins to clean the primer pockets. The primer pockets of the cases below are just as clean as the rest of the case.

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Unread 01-05-2021, 03:41 PM   #9
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So..resizing as a last step doesn't mar the outside case walls with your method?
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Unread 01-05-2021, 04:08 PM   #10
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The small primer 45 brass has caused a lot of reloading folks headaches, but it has been around for a number of years now, and not likely to go away. I used to just discard them, but then I decided to just separate them, and if times get "tough", I will reload them just like I have done with the LPP brass for years. I have a fair amount of it, but have yet to need to load any of it.

I never run dirty brass through my sizer die, as it can/will scratch the insides of the sizer and then will transfer scratches to my brass......been there done that!! Learned it the hard way, and had to repolish my 38-40 sizer. Never again. not a fun project!!
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Unread 01-05-2021, 06:09 PM   #11
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I don't run dirty brass through my die either. I didn't mention that I wash and tumble the brass before sizing and decapping, then use the wet stainless pin process...

Brass comes out squeaky clean. Dies are not damaged. It looks like the brass in Doubs' photo above...
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Unread 01-05-2021, 06:33 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lugerholsterrepair View Post
So..resizing as a last step doesn't mar the outside case walls with your method?
Resizing takes place in the press first step. With the cases as clean as new, I think it protects both brass and dies from damage that grit and dirt may cause.

I have an old RCBS 4X4 semi-progressive press with four die stations. The disc must be turned manually to advance the cases.. Also manual is the primer feed and the powder measure throw.

First station sizes the brass and de-caps if not already. Second station bells the case mouth and seats a primer on the down stroke. Third station drops the powder and fourth station seats the bullet. Later I use a single stage press to taper crimp.

A light is positioned so that the powder charge can be verified before seating the bullet.

It's not as fast as a full progressive press but it's built like a tank and works very well.
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Unread 01-06-2021, 10:41 PM   #13
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Here's a video of a light setup for viewing powder level on my Hornady Lock-n-load press:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hIraXq6u0VY
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Unread 08-14-2022, 01:04 PM   #14
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Generally, with rifle calibers small primers were used in magazine rifles to decrease the possibility of detonation in a magazine tube. It could be that some folks feel that there's a risk with the large pistol primers in a 45 magazine. However, with the scarcity of primers it's probably a good idea to have some small primer cases on hand just in case.
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Unread 08-14-2022, 03:26 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Schutzenbob View Post
Generally, with rifle calibers small primers were used in magazine rifles to decrease the possibility of detonation in a magazine tube. It could be that some folks feel that there's a risk with the large pistol primers in a 45 magazine. However, with the scarcity of primers it's probably a good idea to have some small primer cases on hand just in case.
The only reason SP 45acp exists is that over the course of millions of rounds, small primers are cheaper than large primers. They first started being used in 45 with CCI Blazer aluminum case ammo.
Most tube fed firearms, except for 22lr, are large primer calibers. (The exceptions being 357/38, 25-20, and 32-20), most others are bigger calibers, 45-70, 35Rem, 30-30, 32WS. 40-65, and a myriad of other obsolete big bore calibers. The detonation of primers in a tube fed firearm is mostly a non-issue, even with round nose bullets. Size of the primer will not make a difference.
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Unread 08-15-2022, 04:45 PM   #16
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the story is long and ugly. Police departments insisted in lead-free primers because of heavy use on indoor ranges, and the apparent inability to make the officers involved actually run a clean range.

The new compositions had a higher force, and primers backing out became a problem. The ammo companies tried to solve it by making the flash hole bigger, so there would be less back thrust.

the long-term solution, for some, was to use small pistol primers, and they also found it helped make loading more efficient and less costly. (when you load by the million-round production lot, even a small cost change matters.)

So, save them up, they work just fine, and you can always trade them, or hold them in reserve for when you have small but not large pistol primers.
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Unread 08-16-2022, 09:24 AM   #17
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The major problem they create is sorting, and as noted by others
1. the sorting adds another step in reloading
2. any mis-sorted case jams up a progressive press
3. any jam in a progressive run has to be cleared making an opportunity for error


1 & 2 are inconvenient, #3 is dangerous
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Unread 09-02-2022, 06:58 PM   #18
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Now they are doing it to 10mm!
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Unread 09-04-2022, 11:20 AM   #19
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Never let a bad idea go to waste
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