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Thread: What difference does a primer make?

  1. #1

    What difference does a primer make?

    Following on from another thread "primers" where talk was in relation to a shortage of a particular primer, got me wondering. What difference does it make & how noticeable?
    I've not been reloading that long & when I started I went to the gunshop & asked for advice for a 100 grain .243 for my rifle. I came away with 2 types of bullet, 1 powder & 1 type of primers.
    I set up ladder scale loads & found what I liked so stuck with it. Question is if I keep all other factors constant,
    Brass, powder & bullet what difference would changing the primer have? Is the primer just a source of ignition or is it more complex than that?
    I was using federal LR match primers now have standard federal primers
    Wingy
    unless you can prove it beyond all reasonable doubt, it wasn't me. If you can prove it then you must be mistaken

  2. #2
    We had factory rounds with different primers used. All the rounds we have used had the same bullets, powder and cases. The original rounds grouped half inch, the batch with different primers grouped, if you can call it that, three inches out of my rifle and five inches out of another. What the other primers were I don't know but they certainly made a big difference, we are now back onto rounds the same as the original ones and back doing half inch groups

    Al

  3. #3
    Do a search on Google, I cant recal the link but there is a load of pictures of different primers in action ! you will be surprised they range from an ignition to a 2" flame.

    Think its quite old though

  4. #4
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    I have tried, over a chronograph, Remington and CCI (both STANDARD) Large Rifle primers in my .270 WCF with every other element of the load the same. I found that the velocity spread was the smallest with the CCI primers and that also the acheived velocity was the greatest. I don't have my Game Book with me as I write this but can say that the better primer of the two was the CCI.

    I have also over a chronograph tested Remington and CCI (both STANDARD) Large Pistol primers in a twenty inch barrel Winchester 94 in .44 Magnum and in that the highest velocity was given by cartridges loaded with the Remington primer. Again cases, powder, bullet and how it was seated and crimped were the same in each batch.

    So the real test is load a batch identical in every way except for the primers and chronograph them.

  5. #5
    I had the same as Ranger22 i had CCI,s the gun shop ran out and gave me a box of Remminton BR Primers feck i near failed the shooting test.So primers are a big factor.I looked around for CCI and got back on track.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Ranger22 View Post
    We had factory rounds with different primers used. All the rounds we have used had the same bullets, powder and cases. The original rounds grouped half inch, the batch with different primers grouped, if you can call it that, three inches out of my rifle and five inches out of another. What the other primers were I don't know but they certainly made a big difference, we are now back onto rounds the same as the original ones and back doing half inch groups

    Al
    I don't doubt what you say Ranger but surely the loads must have been different in some other way and not just the primers to give such a difference? Lots of ammunition from the same manufacturer can after all vary significantly in their results.
    I say that because I have tested loads using the same components in every way apart from the primers and have had varying results not only of accuracy but of velocity as well, but the difference has never been as dramatic as that. I have one reloading manual that actually claims that different primers make no significant difference but that manual is the exception to the rule and all others claim that it does.
    It's the calibre of the shooter that counts not the calibre of the rifle.

  7. #7
    No just the primers, everything else was the same.

    Al

  8. #8
    Perhaps it was just a bad lot off ammo?

    Not quite the same but just to show how lots/batches vary our club purchased an initial 10,000 Geco .22lr rounds after a trial evening hosted by the RUAG representative. The first 10,000 were brilliant and we decided to continue buying that ammo in the future as the price was right also. The next batch that we bought certainly didn't give the same accuracy in fact in the same rifles it gave much larger groups, probably twice the size. We were able to confirm this by going back to some of the original batch that one of the club members still had. Now you would think that the quality control would ensure consistency from batch to batch but obviously not. It could be the same with centrefire ammunition. In fact I have heard that the NRA had to return the last batch of 7.62mm to RWS because of problems with that batch of ammo.
    It's the calibre of the shooter that counts not the calibre of the rifle.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by 8x57 View Post
    Perhaps it was just a bad lot off ammo?

    Not quite the same but just to show how lots/batches vary our club purchased an initial 10,000 Geco .22lr rounds after a trial evening hosted by the RUAG representative. The first 10,000 were brilliant and we decided to continue buying that ammo in the future as the price was right also. The next batch that we bought certainly didn't give the same accuracy in fact in the same rifles it gave much larger groups, probably twice the size. We were able to confirm this by going back to some of the original batch that one of the club members still had. Now you would think that the quality control would ensure consistency from batch to batch but obviously not. It could be the same with centrefire ammunition. In fact I have heard that the NRA had to return the last batch of 7.62mm to RWS because of problems with that batch of ammo.
    Yes I was using Geco .22 in my CZ 452, then about 2 years ago Geco changed their ammunition, staff at the gunshop told me this as I went to buy more. It's never been the same since
    Wingy

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by 8x57 View Post
    Perhaps it was just a bad lot off ammo?

    Not quite the same but just to show how lots/batches vary our club purchased an initial 10,000 Geco .22lr rounds after a trial evening hosted by the RUAG representative.
    Geco is budget ammo. It's cheap for a reason. If you want something better then you have to pay more. Geco is fine for shooting from cheap semi-autos and for plinking. It's not target ammo.

    -JMS

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