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Weird primer hits/Failure to Fire & Eject

This is a discussion on Weird primer hits/Failure to Fire & Eject within the Reloading forums, part of the Firearm Forum category; I'm about 800 rounds into my reloading journey with the Dillon 550B press and Ruger LW Commander in 45ACP. The gun has run about 1,000 ...


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Old February 4th, 2017, 06:14 AM   #1
 
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Weird primer hits/Failure to Fire & Eject

I'm about 800 rounds into my reloading journey with the Dillon 550B press and Ruger LW Commander in 45ACP. The gun has run about 1,000 rounds so far.

Yesterday I had four weird failures to fire I'd like to show the forum for some analysis...


The gun:
Ruger 45ACP LW Commander
Wilson Combat 47D 8-round magazines (3 different ones)

The load:
Wilson Combat 200gr LSWC
4.9gr TiteGroup powder
Federal Large Pistol primer
Range brass, some shot 2-3 times
COL: 1.25"
Crimp: .469"-.470"
(4 of 50 I loaded in the same sitting)

What happened:
On trigger pull, no bang..
Removed magazine, then found it very difficult to rack back the slide...had to really pull to eject the round, which seemed to be 'stuck' in the chamber.

The rounds all have very similar primer strikes, which don't look like the ones that I usually expect -- they are more gradual craters than sharp divots as in the two fired cartridges also shown. But could this appearance just be that the rounds weren't subjected to the heat and motion of being fired?



Because the the gun was locked up til I was able to rack the slide back and eject, I wanted to double-check the rounds' dimensions.

(I had 'plunked' all the rounds before I went to the range and they had all fit fine in my EGW checker.)

So here are the four rounds in the EGW after the incident:



They still fit fine in the EGW and plunked with a tiny bit of resistance in the dirty barrel after I took it out of the pistol for cleaning.

COL doesn't seem to have been compromised by their trips through the pistol:



When I did eject the rounds I was mindful that a mighty pull could impact the primer with bad results and it didn't seem that the primer dents were made by anything but the firing pin.

Further factors: I had noticed some leading in the chamber and barrel and had been working away at it. When this occurred there were a few small lumps and smears in the chamber...under heat could that have 'grabbed' the cartridge making it difficult to eject? (Last night I picked up a Birchwood-Casey Lead Removal cloth and scoured out the lead.)

I also removed and cleaned/lightly oiled (with FP-10) the firing pin/spring and the extractor. They weren't particularly dirty btw.

This happened in each of my three Wilson 47D magazines. In the sequence of shots it happened in the second, sixth, third and second shots of the mags.

Grasping at straws: the brass was cleaned in an ultrasonic cleaner, with spent primers in place. I let them dry for 2-3 days and then run them through the Dillon...could I have been getting remnant moisture in the fresh primers?

One of the four is X-Treme, which snuck in to this batch of 50 which had I sorted to be all Winchester. So I shot 49 reloaded Winchester cases and one X-Treme here...

Not thinking it could be bad primers...but ... could it? They all came from the same box, part of a big box of 1,000.

So many variables!

Your thoughts and advice very welcome.

Commo




Last edited by Commo; February 4th, 2017 at 06:17 AM.
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Old February 4th, 2017, 06:47 AM   #2
 
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It looks like the firing pin put a good smack on them, so I'm going with a few bad primers. It doesn't happen often, but it does happen.

As far as the rounds being hard to eject......do you use a chamber brush? People clean the bore, but often neglect the chamber. To much crud in there can cause it to be tight.
JMO


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Old February 4th, 2017, 06:55 AM   #3
 
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I had not been doing much to the chamber, hence the lead/grunge that had built up in it.

I got a lot of it out but shot these shots with some remnant bumps and smears..now it's gone as the Lead Removal cloth wrapped around a bronze brush cleaned it up very well...lesson learned.

Thanks,

Commo
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Old February 4th, 2017, 07:00 AM   #4
 
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Does appear to be bad primers. Only way to know for sure is to pull bullets and carefully decap the primers for examination. Check for presence of anvil and priming mix.

Another scenario could be the priming mix "shattered" during assembly and was not present between cup and anvil when struck.
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Old February 4th, 2017, 07:03 AM   #5
 
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Another vote here for some bad primers.
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Old February 4th, 2017, 07:08 AM   #6
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I'm going to vote for using an ultrasonic cleaner with spent primers then decapping and seating a new primer. This is NOT a good practice because the liquids used to clean your cases can get trapped in the primer pocket even after they seem to be dry. Next time .... just deprime and size on your Dillon 550 BEFORE the ultrasonic cleaner.

BTW, I have been reloading for more than 50 years .... many, many thousands of rounds and I think I have had 3 or 4 bad primers total. Primers are by far the most reliable reloading component.
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Old February 4th, 2017, 07:42 AM   #7
 
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Thanks, all...I think it is MUCH more likely I did something to cause this than it is likely that the primers are bad...the ultrasonic cleanup seems highly likely to be involved. I thought I was air-drying the cases for long enough but perhaps not..

Luckily that will be a moot point as I am about ready to set up an inexpensive Lee press with my Redding decapping die (and, I think, an extended shell holder) to do all my decapping prior to whichever cleaning method I use. (I have the ultrasonic and a vibratory cleaner...)

Other thoughts?

Ever upward...

Commo
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Old February 4th, 2017, 08:15 AM   #8
 
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I missed the part where you were ultrasonic cleaning with old primers in place, so I'd like to change my vote

I use one of the inexpensive Lee open "C" presses and a universal decapping die to knock out old primers before they go in the ultrasonic cleaner. After being rinsed, I put my brass in a cheap toaster oven for 2-3 hours at 140 degrees to dry out.
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Old February 4th, 2017, 08:37 AM   #9
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Commo View Post
I had not been doing much to the chamber, hence the lead/grunge that had built up in it.

I got a lot of it out but shot these shots with some remnant bumps and smears..now it's gone as the Lead Removal cloth wrapped around a bronze brush cleaned it up very well...lesson learned.

Thanks,

Commo
Wilson Combat make a decent chamber brush.......I wanna say it was $7.99 on Amazon.


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Old February 4th, 2017, 08:42 AM   #10
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark204 View Post
Wilson Combat make a decent chamber brush.......I wanna say it was $7.99 on Amazon.
I will look at that..sounds perfect..

Commo
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Old February 4th, 2017, 08:57 AM   #11
 
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[QUOTE=Commo;2815897]I will look at that..sounds perfect..

Commo[/QUOT


If you can't find it on Amazon, Wilson Combat has them for $4.95.

Its different then the one I have, mine has a handle, the one Wilson doesn't.
But it does do an excellent job.


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Old February 4th, 2017, 09:42 AM   #12
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnsxj View Post
I missed the part where you were ultrasonic cleaning with old primers in place, so I'd like to change my vote

I use one of the inexpensive Lee open "C" presses and a universal decapping die to knock out old primers before they go in the ultrasonic cleaner.
That's getting to be the consensus.....

Exact plan/items I have in mind -- am I right in thinking I'll need Redding's extended shell holder to reach high enough with the short .45 case? (My decapping die is by Redding..)

Thanks,

Commo
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Old February 5th, 2017, 07:28 PM   #13
 
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Quote:
BTW, I have been reloading for more than 50 years .... many, many thousands of rounds and I think I have had 3 or 4 bad primers total. Primers are by far the most reliable reloading component.
Iowegan beat me too it and for the same number of years as well. I can't remember the last primer that I had that was bad.

Overly long rounds might cause the inability to rack the slide if the bullet had engaged the rifling perhaps. As to the misfires, I assume that you've cleaned and checked the firing pin and it's race within the slide. There should be no oil or grease in the race, nor any chips for that manner either.

A very light load, or contaminated powder might be another consideration. Try loading a mid-level powder charge and seating those LSWC's so that only the barest hint of the bullet's shoulder shows above the case mouth. That should take care of the "bullet stuck in the rifling" scenario. Those primers look far too round for the fired rounds, I think. Are you using a very light load?

The last thing is the cleaning method as commented on by Iowegan. In truth, I don't often clean my handgun brass. Just the ones that fall in the dirt out of respect for my loading dies. I don't clean primer pockets either on short gun rounds. Some I've load over 20 times with no difficulty in seating new primers.

Lastly, are you seating your primers to just below level with the case head? If they're not flush or below, you run the risk of an out of battery discharge (a slim possibility), and/or a round that will not fire because the anvil of the primer is not dented 'cause it's not seated deep enough.

HTH's Rod
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Old February 5th, 2017, 08:06 PM   #14
 
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I'm new to reloading, but I have a few thousand rounds made and shot with CCI primers and not a one misfired.
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Old February 5th, 2017, 08:49 PM   #15
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Looking at your pictures, it looks like that the primers were not seated all the way, do you clean the primer pocket? Good luck on your next batch.
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