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MontanaWolf
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Posted: May 21 2018 at 7:17pm | IP Logged Quote MontanaWolf

Well, this progressive loading for 223 raises many more questions for me.

I have never loaded a case that had a military (Berdan) primer, my pistol and rifle loading has been with Boxer primers. Therefore, I never have had the joy of fighting with these primers. But now that I have taken the quest to mass load 223 (because I can) I have collected a good amount of good range (223/5.5.6) brass for my new project. Knowing that, I assume sooner than later, I will find Berdans lurking in the bucket. So I ask all you great knowledge gurus the following:

1st, is converting a Berdan to a Boxer called swagging as I assume?

2nd, is there and easy way to tell just by looking that I have a Berdan, or do I have to wait to snap my de-priming rod   .

3rd, I know zip about the swaging process. So if I have to swage, can or do I swage all my primer pockets (Berdan and Boxer) the same? And even if I can swage boxers too, am I correct in assuming doing them all, that would be a huge waste of time, yes? So what I am asking is should I just swage the Berdans and forget doing the Boxers?

4th, once they are swagged, do I then just prime them for ever after like a Boxer case?   

And lastly, I have a Hornady AP LnL primer pocket swag tool, is that all I need to swage? Swage tool

And FYI, any info on the subject is helpful.
Edited cuz I can't type

Edited by MontanaWolf on May 21 2018 at 7:20pm


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twillis
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Posted: May 22 2018 at 10:04am | IP Logged Quote twillis

Berdan primers are not the same as crimped primers that are common to military brass. Most if not all military 5.56/223 are crimped box primers not Berdan.The difficulty with crimped primers is in seating new primers in the pocket. This is where the swagger you referenced and also cutters come in to play. They remove the old crimp which allows you to re-prime the case. I use a cutter to good effect and others have reported excellent service with the swagger.

Berdan primers are an different animal all together. The anvil is built into the case instead of the primer proper. Also the primer pocket has 2 holes instead of one. With a good light and eyes you can look inside the case from the neck and see the 2 holes. While reloadable it is a pain to do so.

Edited by twillis on May 22 2018 at 10:05am


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MontanaWolf
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Posted: May 22 2018 at 8:16pm | IP Logged Quote MontanaWolf

AHHHH-HA, Thanks Twill, I have been reading up on them since I posted but you explained it better in a paragraph than the authors of the articles did/ I definitely thought they were the same animal.

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Rex
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Posted: May 23 2018 at 3:15am | IP Logged Quote Rex

I cut the crimp out of my cases with a little case chamfer tool.
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richhodg66
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Posted: May 23 2018 at 4:26am | IP Logged Quote richhodg66

The method Rex mentions is a lot easier than swaging the crimp out.

If you stick to just American made 5.56 brass, you won't have a problem, in fact, can't remember ever finding a Berdan primed 5.56, though I'm sure they exist.

If you're gonna do a lot of military brass, get one of the punch sets Lee makes for depriming with a hammer and save yourself breaking a bunch of decapping pins in your dies. They are cheap and work, but it's a slow process.

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Old Ranger
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Posted: May 23 2018 at 5:31am | IP Logged Quote Old Ranger

A simple rotary ball file in a hand drill is fast and
easy removing the crimp. Just like Rex's chamfering tool.
You're simply cutting it away and leaving a slight bevel
behind. Easy.

Berdan primers? A few European cases maybe will be found
and more likely steel cases to boot. Throw them in the
trash. That's the best way to "remove" them.

Loaded the snot outta the .223Rem back in the late 80's
and 90's for an excellent Armalite AR180. Now for "Dr.
Evil" my semi sorta M4 clone. The .223Rem is ridiculously
easy to load. Case prep, in my opinion, is the key to
that. Don't take the time to properly process those cases
and you've made an easy job difficult and at times,
costly and damaging to your gear.
I question the use of a progressive press to load
bottleneck cartridges, but that's not my call here. Some
folks go all "Rambo" with autoloaders and one case that
squibs in that fast shooting could spell disaster.
But again, it's not my call. Be safe and I hope that
blue contraption works for ya. Meanwhile I'll be loading
mine with the latest technology provided in the 1940's.


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twillis
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Posted: May 23 2018 at 11:13am | IP Logged Quote twillis

Glad to help Montana. I used the case chamfer Rex mentioned until I needed to do over 500 of them. Then I bought a cutter kit that has a cutter for both large and small primers. It is about twice as fast. As mentioned by Rich, I de-primed those in a separate step although I used a press mounted Lee decapping die to do so. Fortunately it only has to be done once!

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MontanaWolf
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Posted: May 23 2018 at 12:16pm | IP Logged Quote MontanaWolf

Thanks all, I appreciate the help.

My plan so far (I think) is that I must do 2 passes for bottle neck rifle cartridges. 1 to prep and 1 to prime, powder, seat and crimp. I learned on the HG rounds that you have to go SMOOTH, not fast (just like the trigger, LOL), checking all 5 stations before pulling the handle again, or you will have a mess but even slow I can do 500 rounds an hour.
AGAIN, any ammo made on the progressive is only used for practice, not for real life scenarios, like self defense ammo where I only use factory ammo, or our hunting, that I do meticulously on a semi progressive for that ammo.

My phase 1 plan has two options but both start with a Franklin wet tumble (all range brass) and a 3-4 hour dry in my dehydrator. I might even make some deer jerky and eat as I go ).   After its all dry, I have two options:

1st, (cheapest) I may prep all my brass on my RCBS electric case trimmer which trims, deburs and chamfers in 1 shot. This way I get a great 1st hand look and feel for each case. Then I pass it off to my BEAUTIFUL bride, (yes, I am blessed to have a beautiful wife who loves to shoot (all weapons), fish, hunt and reload too!!!). She then lubes, resize and decap and tossing it back into the Franklin wet tumbler for another wash & dry round, and we can make more jerky, elk this go around. ;-).

Or (cost me about 200.00 I guess) I could do this (see link), it is a pretty sweet set up (I already have the case & bullet feeders and powder drop die so all I need is the Dillon trimmer). Either way I go, I end up at phase two which is prime, powder, seat, crimp and SHOOT!!!!

Brass case prep 223 progressive

Let me know what you all think please.
Edited cuz I suck at typing.


Edited by MontanaWolf on May 23 2018 at 12:20pm


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Lord, please let it be a 1 shot, 1 kill day 10 yds uphill from a spot that my tailgate fits under. Thank you!
IF YOU WON'T STAND BEHIND OUR TROOPS THEN PLEASE, GO STAND IN FRONT OF THEM!
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