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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been reloading a couple of years now and was pretty happy with the results until I got my henry and started to have trouble with my reloads. Turned out the Henry just needed the firing pin channel washed out but .. I did discover that I was setting my primers to deep. I was pushing the handle on my single stage to set the primers like it was an amusement park strength contest.

I switched to a different primer and it made a huge difference and I was careful to gauge when the primer was seated instead of just mashing. I had heard about people pulling the primers before tumbling so today I decided to take my brass and pull the primers and tumble before I started reloading.

My brass had already been tumbled some time ago with the spent primers so I pulled the primers and ran the tumbler with 100 pcs each of what I was loading for about 30 minutes.

My goodness. It was like good sex. The primers just popped into the pocket and you could really sense when they seated. SWEET!

So here is my question ... if you happen to tumble without primers .. when do you remove the primer. Here is my dilemma. I dont want to run my dirty brass through my resizing/depriming die because it will crud up my die. I guess I could tumble the brass with primer for 30-40 minutes and then pull primers and run it another 30 minutes or do like today and just tumble a bunch with primers and then just pull primers and give an extra tumble to just the amount of brass I feel like reloading that day ... or ... get a handheld depriming tool and tumble it all once??

Any guidance would be appreciated. Although I have probably reloaded more than 5000 rounds I feel very much a beginner.

Oh and if you havent done it .. it really does feel so much more controlled with brass cleaned after the primer was removed!
 

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A separate decapping die is what you need. One without sizing function, but just the decapping pin in the middle.

I set it up on a single stage press separate from my adjusted progressive press.

I also wash my brass (with soap and water, rinse and dry) to get the dirt and powder debris out of it prior to tumbling. it's amazing how much comes out. I separate it into different calibers, decap it, wash it with soap and water, rinse it, dry it and then tumble it. I use a polish (made for brass cleaning - no ammonia) and a quarter of a dryer sheet to accumulate dust when I tumble it in crushed walnut.
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I use a Lee universal decaping die prior to cleaning brass. Not sure if this will work for your caliber. Using this universal die helps me keep my decaping/sizing die clean. If dry tumbling be careful about media stuck in the primer pocket.
All of my equipment is lee. I am loading primarily 38/357, 10mm and far far less often 9 and 45. Can I use the universal prior to tumbling without ruining the die?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you guys!!!
 

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The decapping die doesn't have sizing in it. It just has a rod in the middle, fits around the case, and pushes the pin through the primer hole.

https://www.midwayusa.com/product/1011183740

Note that they still have to be properly adjusted. This cut away shows how they are shaped inside.

Decap.jpg
 
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All the above. Always pop my primers first (decap), the run in STS wet media, then anneal (if applicable) trim to length, and all the other stuff I do that most people don't...lol

I agree, a dedicated decap die is best. In fact, I don't have a decap pin in any of my sizing dies, bushing or otherwise.

I actually have 2, a Lyman and an RCBS because the Lyman wont accept a case bigger than 30 caliber.

Never set my primers with a press, always a hand priming tool (RCBS) or in the case of my precision long range rounds, a Bald Eagle bench priming machine. I can set the seating depth in 0.0001 increments.
 
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Universal decapper inbound! :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
and look what arrived today!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am stoked!

Universal decap.jpg
 

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Turned out the Henry just needed the firing pin channel washed out but .. I did discover that I was setting my primers to deep. I was pushing the handle on my single stage to set the primers like it was an amusement park strength contest.
I have always hand primed with a Lyman. I can feel the slightest variance and cull as needed.
 

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Never cleaned a primer pocket in my life. OK I did once just to say I did it. Waste of time.;)

Cleaning primer pockets is the gateway drug to primer uniforming, then you need to buy one of those. Then it leads to changing your brass cleaning to a wet tumbler/pins and the top secret formula of Lem Shine and auto car wash. Then you need to rinse. They you need to buy a dryer and the brass will be surgically clean and prepped!

PS: If good sex is just "popping out" I think there maybe something wrong there.:D
 

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Universal die is the only way. I also prime by hand. Those presses can simply put too much pressure on the seating operation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Never cleaned a primer pocket in my life. OK I did once just to say I did it. Waste of time.;)

Cleaning primer pockets is the gateway drug to primer uniforming, then you need to buy one of those. Then it leads to changing your brass cleaning to a wet tumbler/pins and the top secret formula of Lem Shine and auto car wash. Then you need to rinse. They you need to buy a dryer and the brass will be surgically clean and prepped!

PS: If good sex is just "popping out" I think there maybe something wrong there.:D
The primers just popped into the pocket and you could really sense when they seated. SWEET!
Come on Bro ... I dont do it as much anymore but I still remember how!! :D

But about the other stuff .. you are RIGHT! I am already looking at a hand primer .. damn .. when will it end! Still .. I tried out my new Universal decapper and it is AWESOME! So from now on primers get pulled before the tumble.

Now I have about 600 cases that need primers pulled .. Hmmmm .. since the wife never cleans her own guns or helps in reloading ... she may become the official decapper around here.
 
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Come on Bro ... I dont do it as much anymore but I still remember how!! :D

But about the other stuff .. you are RIGHT! I am already looking at a hand primer .. damn .. when will it end! Still .. I tried out my new Universal decapper and it is AWESOME! So from now on primers get pulled before the tumble.

Now I have about 600 cases that need primers pulled .. Hmmmm .. since the wife never cleans her own guns or helps in reloading ... she may become the official decapper around here.
I know what you are saying.:D

Primer seating. I have been seating cci, win and wolf primers for years, Have used the Lee hand primer, the RCBS Universal. A Lee single stage, Lee Turret and Hornady LnL AP Pretty much every pistol caliber and 4 rifle calibers
Never had a problem with any of them, never crushed a primer (which is impossible to do if the assembly is set correctly. As fa a "feel The primer is seated or it isn't. I can lean on the press handles and it's not gonna seat any further.
I use Lee dies and never had a fail to fire from a primer seated to high. Lightly tuned guns and heavy trigger guns.
Hand priming just is another step as is de-priming and then having to go through the operations on the press.
I always find it kinda funny, that people got to by a Dillon progressive yet they deprime all the brass first, then wash and dry then hand prime??Whats the sense of a 500 per hour press?(I am in no way a speedy reloader). Even on a Progressive maybe 200-250 hr. The claims over that are exaggerated. My turret is fast enough and lots of ways prefer it to my progressive,
But everyone does stuff different whatever works .
 

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That Lee universal decapping die is terrific. I also have a Lyman case prep center that I have set up with a primer pocket brush, a primer pocket reamer, and a brush for the inside of the case. It doesn't take long to hit all 3 parts of the station for all of my brass. A clean primer pocket can make a huge difference.
 

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Just imagine if Ron Popeil was still in business?. He would make a press the cleans, sorts, deprimes, loads all in one step!

JUST SET IT and Forget IT!:D
 

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I've removed live primers with no problem. Still, the eye protection is a good idea.....you just never know.
A removed primer is usually no longer good for anything, just spay them down with oil and toss them. Why take the chance of a hang fire or dud for 3 cents?
The case is usually just fine. Just inspect it like you would any clean case before reloading.
If you are not sure what powder you loaded, toss the powder too. If you are sure what it is, put the powder back in the can.
We've all had those "ooops" moments when we started to reload and then remembered that the powder hopper was full of pistol powder and not rifle powder. It's really bad when you mix the powders and have to toss the whole batch!
FYI - I often weigh my reloads. I have a range of weight that I expect. If the round is too heavy or too light, I'll pull the bullet and redo that round.
 

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We've all had those "ooops" moments when we started to reload and then remembered that the powder hopper was full of pistol powder and not rifle powder.
I haven't, because I always set the powder can right beside my measure, so I can't forget what's in it. And to absolutely prevent double charges when using very small loads of fast powders, the case goes from the measure directly to my press; a little slower than charging all cases at once, but not much. Weighing is certainly a good thing if you have the patience for it, but I don't.
 
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