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Posted: 10/27/2013 8:36:54 PM EST
Hey guys, these were my first .223 loads, and I went out yesterday to chrono them with another arfcommer. To both of us the primers appear a little flat. I'm over the Hornady max data, but .8 grains under the Ramshot data. Any input would be great, thanks.


24grs are the top cases, 24.5 are middle, and 25 are the last row.





Link Posted: 10/27/2013 9:21:01 PM EST
I use mostly Varget but they look alright from what I can see. There's no cratering and no brass flowing into the extractor cut, and no soot around the primers. You're right on the edge according to your loads but I think it also depends on where you get the data from. A tight crimp and seating the bullet too far forward also serve to increase pressure but otherwise looks good. If theres no difference accuracy wise why not go with just 24 grains? Also not knowing if Ramshot is temperature sensitive, maybe this load on a hotter day would have more pressure.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 10:04:41 PM EST

Why so hot? Some of my best loads with tac and 55gr bullets is a lot less powder. 22-23 gr in a 16" stock 6920 give me the best groups. Easy to shoot and easy on the brass. The hotter the loads, the shorter brass life.


Link Posted: 10/27/2013 10:26:01 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/27/2013 10:32:04 PM EST by f40]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By ScooterInVegas:

Why so hot? Some of my best loads with tac and 55gr bullets is a lot less powder. 22-23 gr in a 16" stock 6920 give me the best groups. Easy to shoot and easy on the brass. The hotter the loads, the shorter brass life.


View Quote

When loading pistol rounds I usually start in between min and max, and work from there. I searched on here to see what most people were loading with Tac and I'm well within range. I figure if I'm going to be loading .223, I may as well load it so it has good terminal performance, not that I'm chasing after 5.56 loads by any means.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 2:03:03 AM EST
Those look fine from what I can see. Wouldn't go hotter.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 2:26:35 AM EST
Nothing wrong with those primers,

looks like there's still some radius on

primer rims.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 2:27:34 AM EST
Hard to tell from the pics but looks like the lower set has flat primers, myself I tend to consider that a backoff sign.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 3:19:52 AM EST
Reading primers is A-Kin to reading Tea Leaves. They tell you little to nothing.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 3:29:41 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/28/2013 3:30:00 AM EST by sleepercaprice1]
I wouldn't put too much stock in the appearance of the primers, and I can tell you that 25 grains of TAC is not normally considered an especially hot load. I know people who routinely load that combination for practice ammo. You can almost certainly find an accurate load using less powder that will shoot accurately in your rifle rifle if you feel the load is borderline.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 3:33:59 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/28/2013 3:35:25 AM EST by williewvr]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By steve4102:
Reading primers is A-Kin to reading Tea Leaves. They tell you little to nothing.
View Quote


He stated"To both of us the primers appear a little flat. I'm over the Hornady max data, but .8 grains under the Ramshot data. Any input would be great, thanks.
He has a load over the book max by a known reputable source and is showing the first stage pressure signs, what are you thinking he needs for a sign to back off? maybe a rifle scattered over the range? Also whats going to happen to his pressures if he fires this ammo at 105 ambient temp this summer?
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 3:50:22 AM EST
He is well under Ramshot Max for the 5.56. Reading primers can tell the handloader almost nothing.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 5:16:28 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/28/2013 5:17:22 AM EST by williewvr]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By steve4102:
He is well under Ramshot Max for the 5.56. Reading primers can tell the handloader almost nothing.
View Quote

But he is using .223 cases. Is he making any other substitutions? Same case brand and lot? How about primers?
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 5:19:05 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/28/2013 5:22:27 AM EST by steve4102]
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Originally Posted By williewvr:

But he is using .223 cases. Is he making any other substitutions? Same case brand and lot? How about primers?
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Originally Posted By williewvr:
Originally Posted By steve4102:
He is well under Ramshot Max for the 5.56. Reading primers can tell the handloader almost nothing.

But he is using .223 cases. Is he making any other substitutions? Same case brand and lot? How about primers?

What is the difference between a 223 case and a 5.56 case? Besides a crimped primer pocket.

Ramshot also used Win 223 cases.

Link Posted: 10/28/2013 5:22:55 AM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By steve4102:
Reading primers is A-Kin to reading Tea Leaves. They tell you little to nothing.
View Quote

Especially in an AR.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 5:26:36 AM EST
I have never worried about loading to max pressures and velocity, I load to produce accurate, constistant rounds.
As a plus my brass lasts longer.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 5:33:52 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/28/2013 5:37:10 AM EST by williewvr]
case cap. 5.56 has thicker base walls which results in slightly less cap
a .223 case should have lower pressures in the same loading I know but its was used as an Illistration of possible varibles.
whats he shooting it in ?.223 or 5.56? whats his overall length? jump to leade?
", these were my first .223 loads" OP
why are we even discussing 5.56
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 5:42:33 AM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By williewvr:
case cap. 5.56 has thicker base walls which results in slightly less cap
a .223 case should have lower pressures in the same loading I know but its was used as an Illistration of possible varibles.
whats he shooting it in ?.223 or 5.56? whats his overall length? jump to leade?
", these were my first .223 loads" OP
why are we even discussing 5.56
View Quote


Sorry the 5.56 vs the 223 case capacity argument has been dis-proven on this and many other forums countless times.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 6:04:53 AM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By williewvr:
case cap. 5.56 has thicker base walls which results in slightly less cap
a .223 case should have lower pressures in the same loading I know but its was used as an Illistration of possible varibles.
whats he shooting it in ?.223 or 5.56? whats his overall length? jump to leade?
", these were my first .223 loads" OP
why are we even discussing 5.56
View Quote


The biggest myth being spread around on the internet, regarding 223 casings. There have been many tests done on the subject, and here's one:

.223 Rem Case Weight vs. Capacity
Case ManufacturerCase Weight*H20 Capacity**
Lake City 06..................92.0..................30.6
WCC99........................95.5................. ..30.5
Sellier & Belloit..............92.3...................30.5
Remington....................92.3................. ..30.4
PMC..............................93.3............. .....30.4
Hirtenberger.....................93.7............. ..30.4
Lake City 04.....................93.0...............30.4
Federal.............................96.3.......... .....30.2
Hornady..........................93.9............. ...30.1
IMG (Guatemalan)............95.4...............30.1
Lapua (new lot)................93.4...............30.1
Winchester.......................93.9............. ..30.1
Olympic.............................97.4.......... ....30.0
Radway Arsenal................96.1...............30.0
PMP................................104.5.......... ....29.9
FNM 93-1.........................97.3..............29.8
Lapua (old lot)................104.0...............28.0

GlockMonk
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 6:09:49 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/28/2013 6:11:13 AM EST by williewvr]
according to what I can find you are correct. 223 and 556 cases have a lower case cap difference with commerical 223 cases having slightly less cap than current lake city 556. I'm unaware of where pmc falls in the cap charts but there is a 2 grain difference between the highest and lowest case caps.
i got to learn to type faster
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 6:37:18 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/28/2013 6:38:45 AM EST by CBR900]
I disagree with those who assert that primers tell you nothing about excessive pressure.

IMHO, when a primer falls out, gets severely flattened, or gets pierced, it tells you something & you can usually correct that easily (just do not add so much powder. problem solved).

On top of that, OP was honest about using data that is ABOVE max from one source (Hornady), but within the published range from another. You could call Hornady on the telephone and ask them what they think of the 25 grain load (though I can hazard a guess as to what they will tell you).

OP: keep this in mind when deciding if your particular primers with your particular max load (25 grains) in your particular gun are telling you something:

-you used the hardest known primers commonly available to reloaders in the U.S.: the CCI military primer. If you have any doubt that there is some flattening in your max/above-max load (25 grns), then I suggest you try your 25 grn load with some regular Federal brand small rifle primers. The Federal primers should flatten out like pancakes with your max/above max load (25 grns).

I personally would stick to the Hornady data - especially if you don't have a need right now to load hot; your brass & potentially your rifle will probably last longer that way & you will use up less powder. YMMV.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 6:48:05 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/28/2013 7:04:56 AM EST by williewvr]
better to err on the side of caution

the load data recommends a WSR primer.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 7:50:14 AM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By CBR900:
I disagree with those who assert that primers tell you nothing about excessive pressure.

.
View Quote


As the OP was concerned about "flattened" primers not pierced or blown, I will ask you this question.

The 223 Rem operates at a Max Average Pressure (MAP) of 55K psi. At what psi would a 223 show pressure related primer "flattening"?

The 5.56 x 45 has a MAP of 62K psi and uses the same primer and brass as the 223, at what psi would the 5.56 show pressure related primer "flattening"?
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 9:16:12 AM EST
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 9:33:32 AM EST
I learned something recently that I had not read on any internet forum about reloading. I reloaded a bunch of range brass all with the same load, bullet, primer exc...

I noticed that some of the PMC spent brass had primers that were a lot flatter than the rest of the mixed head-stamp brass. I attribute this to a larger primer flash hole in most of the PMC brass and a few others. 'NOT CASE CAPACITY.'

I first noticed this wen some of my shots started grouping about 3in high and to the right. I have since started to separate even plinking brass by head-stamp.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 9:45:49 AM EST
You've gotten a lot of good opinions and discussion. Here's mine.

All those loads are hot. All the primers are flat, all of them. The primer cup is formed around the pin strike. I also see extractor marks on the case heads, especially so for the highest power charges.

Do not rely on handbook data for load info. It is only a guide. Use your fired cases as your criteria. IMO, yours are showing a hot, hot loads.

Link Posted: 10/28/2013 10:07:01 AM EST
In a pressure barrel behind a blast shield i will fire any load you can fit in the case, in a rifle beside my head, not so much.
Why risk it?
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 11:21:42 AM EST
Flattened primers can be caused by several things. The number one thing is "Headspace". Not pressure.

When the primer is stuck, it pushed the case forward leaving a gap between the bolt face and the case head.

As pressures build the the primer is forced out of the case and up against the bolt face.

As pressures continue to build the case expands to fill the chamber forcing the case head backwards up against the bolt face, reseating the primer and causing it to flatten.

That is what cause "flattened" primers.

With that said, Extreme Pressures, well above the 70K range can distort and flatten primers which can be obvious. This is not the situation with the OP.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 12:16:38 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By steve4102:
Flattened primers can be caused by several things. The number one thing is "Headspace". Not pressure.

When the primer is stuck, it pushed the case forward leaving a gap between the bolt face and the case head.

As pressures build the the primer is forced out of the case and up against the bolt face.

As pressures continue to build the case expands to fill the chamber forcing the case head backwards up against the bolt face, reseating the primer and causing it to flatten.

That is what cause "flattened" primers.

With that said, Extreme Pressures, well above the 70K range can distort and flatten primers which can be obvious. This is not the situation with the OP.
View Quote


Nice explanation, when I setup my Lee full length die to cam-over per instructions it was bumping the shoulder back .008-.009 which was causing flattened primers with mild loads. Got the Hornady gage, now bumping .002 back.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 12:20:44 PM EST
I'm wondering if he was throwing charges with a measure or weighing them all. I used to have a RCBS measure that was "somewhat inconsistent" if you were rushing it but was ok if you slowed down and gave it plenty of time. Now I throw into the scale pan and dribble to my charge weight.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 12:34:11 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/28/2013 12:35:14 PM EST by williewvr]
I guess we can all wait around for the "Steve said it wasn't a pressure issue so why did my AR go KERBOOM and blow parts out the magwell" thread.
And I'm finished, I can only stand so much. Guess I'm getting old.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 12:53:30 PM EST
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 12:59:11 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/28/2013 1:27:07 PM EST by steve4102]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By williewvr:
I guess we can all wait around for the "Steve said it wasn't a pressure issue so why did my AR go KERBOOM and blow parts out the magwell" thread.
And I'm finished, I can only stand so much. Guess I'm getting old.
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Here you can read this if you wish. Scroll down to Flattened Primers. It is but one of hundreds of articles on the cause of flattened primers.

http://www.massreloading.com/reading_pressure_signs.html

I will ask again. At what PSI does the 223 primer start to flatten and at what psi does the 5.56 start to flatten. They must be different as they run at different pressures. If flat primers is a sign of pressure, how much pressure?
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 1:12:09 PM EST
Strictly from a primer read, I would not go any hotter than the flattest ones in your photo. Very soon the entire pocket will be filled. If I see this I consider it too hot.

As some others have stated though flat primers are not always caused by simple pressure. I find a lot of once fired brass a ranges and am astound at times how flat the primers are. You will often see this with H&R type break open action rifles and with lever actions like the model 94 Winchester. I believe in both instances it is caused by the primer backing out as pressure builds then the entire case is pushed back against the breech which totally flattens the primer.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 3:00:57 PM EST
There is some on the bottom row flatter than the others, i say if you have the same gun, same bullets and same primers but heavier powder charges, you can bet the flat primer don't lie, otherwise they would all be flat. Even some in the middle row look flatter than i would like, punch em out and look at them, can you find the ridge? Bet so.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 4:44:21 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By dennyd:
There is some on the bottom row flatter than the others, i say if you have the same gun, same bullets and same primers but heavier powder charges, you can bet the flat primer don't lie, otherwise they would all be flat. Even some in the middle row look flatter than i would like, punch em out and look at them, can you find the ridge? Bet so.
View Quote


Could also be a sizing issue. Some cases had the shoulder bumped back more or less than the others, thus different headspace.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 6:17:55 PM EST
I have run up to 26.5 grains of TAC in 3 different rifles with similar bullets in the same sitting
None came unglued, 25.0 is Fine IMO.
Accuracy did not improve but the the Bang was louder.
Link Posted: 10/28/2013 7:14:31 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By steve4102:


Could also be a sizing issue. Some cases had the shoulder bumped back more or less than the others, thus different headspace.
View Quote View All Quotes
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Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By steve4102:
Originally Posted By dennyd:
There is some on the bottom row flatter than the others, i say if you have the same gun, same bullets and same primers but heavier powder charges, you can bet the flat primer don't lie, otherwise they would all be flat. Even some in the middle row look flatter than i would like, punch em out and look at them, can you find the ridge? Bet so.


Could also be a sizing issue. Some cases had the shoulder bumped back more or less than the others, thus different headspace.


They all case gauged fine?
Link Posted: 10/29/2013 12:31:35 AM EST
Hey, you guys go right ahead and "read" your primers to determine pressures. I'll follow the experts like Gen Hatcher who have warned against the flattened primer myth since the late 40's.

Here is a quote from John Barsness of Handloader/Rifle magazines. You can take it for what you paid for it.

trying to “estimate”
pressures from primer appearance
is like trying to make
shrimp jambalaya out of tofu and
spinach.


The complete article can be found here. I could also link dozens and dozens of articles like this preaching the evils and misconceptions of "reading" primers, but it would fall mostly on deaf ears. Carry on gentleman and read your primers if you think you it will keep you safe.

http://www.loaddata.com/articles/PDF/Load%20Development%20May%2011.pdf
Link Posted: 10/29/2013 4:12:40 AM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By steve4102:
Hey, you guys go right ahead and "read" your primers to determine pressures. I'll follow the experts like Gen Hatcher who have warned against the flattened primer myth since the late 40's.

Here is a quote from John Barsness of Handloader/Rifle magazines. You can take it for what you paid for it.

trying to “estimate”
pressures from primer appearance
is like trying to make
shrimp jambalaya out of tofu and
spinach.


The complete article can be found here. I could also link dozens and dozens of articles like this preaching the evils and misconceptions of "reading" primers, but it would fall mostly on deaf ears. Carry on gentleman and read your primers if you think you it will keep you safe.

http://www.loaddata.com/articles/PDF/Load%20Development%20May%2011.pdf
View Quote


Thanks Steve. I'm getting flat primers from loads

well below max. Using your info, I checked head space

on a few rounds. While all pass drop in gauge check,

they are on the side of too much head space and

sit a little low in the gauge. Next round of sizing I'll

adjust die to not bump the shoulder back so much

and see if flat primer issue goes away.
Link Posted: 10/29/2013 4:51:36 AM EST
Thanks for the article, Steve.
Link Posted: 10/29/2013 6:00:56 AM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By johndm1967:


Thanks Steve. I'm getting flat primers from loads

well below max. Using your info, I checked head space

on a few rounds. While all pass drop in gauge check,

they are on the side of too much head space and

sit a little low in the gauge. Next round of sizing I'll

adjust die to not bump the shoulder back so much

and see if flat primer issue goes away.
View Quote View All Quotes
View All Quotes
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By johndm1967:
Originally Posted By steve4102:
Hey, you guys go right ahead and "read" your primers to determine pressures. I'll follow the experts like Gen Hatcher who have warned against the flattened primer myth since the late 40's.

Here is a quote from John Barsness of Handloader/Rifle magazines. You can take it for what you paid for it.

trying to “estimate”
pressures from primer appearance
is like trying to make
shrimp jambalaya out of tofu and
spinach.


The complete article can be found here. I could also link dozens and dozens of articles like this preaching the evils and misconceptions of "reading" primers, but it would fall mostly on deaf ears. Carry on gentleman and read your primers if you think you it will keep you safe.

http://www.loaddata.com/articles/PDF/Load%20Development%20May%2011.pdf


Thanks Steve. I'm getting flat primers from loads

well below max. Using your info, I checked head space

on a few rounds. While all pass drop in gauge check,

they are on the side of too much head space and

sit a little low in the gauge. Next round of sizing I'll

adjust die to not bump the shoulder back so much

and see if flat primer issue goes away.


If you are loading for an AR or other semi-auto, don't adjust your sizing die for "Zero" headspace. Doing so can affect reliability.

Size so they feed and fire, forget what the primers look like, follow your manuals, check velocity and ignore the flat primers, it is normal in an AR.

We size em a little short so they feed and fire, the flat primers just come with the territory.
Link Posted: 10/29/2013 2:47:00 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/29/2013 2:47:54 PM EST by CCW]
The OP showed "hot" loads in the right hand column "M193". Anything less in velocity would be warm, not hot. Ramshot publishes their "hot" data under the heading of NATO.
Most of the published .223 data is SAAMI MAP limited with velocities shown out of a 24" test barrel. Primers can indicate overpressure by piercing, pin strike crater rim (crawling up the firing pin hole), taking on the appearance of a flush rivet head, or leaking gas (soot) around the primer seal.

If you want to run as hot as M193, Ramshot can show you how with their TAC recipies. Just don't expect much life out of your cases.

I like to use 1X LC .mil cases because each has been exposed to peak pressure more than I will ever run them to. Its like a mini-proof test.

I always take Barnass's articles with a grain of salt, because he is not conservative, picks controversial subjects, and appears to write for sensationalism.

Link Posted: 10/29/2013 3:13:18 PM EST
Gentilemans at a reloading shop inform me about it. They have reloaded tons of 223. I would say 10k a day for over 2 years or so. I personally seen them reload over 2k sitting in the shop one day. These guys inform me if your making plinking 223 you dont need to worry about trimming your brass at all. He says only every second or third firing. They also did a experiment with powder levels and came to the conclusion that any normal 223 powder you use to reload you cant overcharge the round. You can literally dump the round in powder scrape it off at the top and add a bullet. I am saying damn near because of the loads are compressed charges.

Remember these reloading manuals are written by lawyers.

I have always measured my powders very carefully. Trimmed my brass every time. I just wanted to make some plinking ammo. Guess I been doing it wrong.
Link Posted: 10/29/2013 3:56:04 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By ekg98:
Gentilemans at a reloading shop inform me about it. They have reloaded tons of 223. I would say 10k a day for over 2 years or so. I personally seen them reload over 2k sitting in the shop one day. These guys inform me if your making plinking 223 you dont need to worry about trimming your brass at all. He says only every second or third firing. They also did a experiment with powder levels and came to the conclusion that any normal 223 powder you use to reload you cant overcharge the round. You can literally dump the round in powder scrape it off at the top and add a bullet. I am saying damn near because of the loads are compressed charges.

Remember these reloading manuals are written by lawyers.

I have always measured my powders very carefully. Trimmed my brass every time. I just wanted to make some plinking ammo. Guess I been doing it wrong.
View Quote



Really, Lawyers? Didn't know that, thanks, I think.
Link Posted: 10/29/2013 4:17:32 PM EST
Only reporting information by guys that reload more than any mortal person. I think.
Link Posted: 10/29/2013 4:56:48 PM EST
Link Posted: 10/29/2013 4:57:11 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/29/2013 4:57:11 PM EST by dryflash3]
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