Best Hand Priming Tool ?

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by Professor, Feb 16, 2014.

  1. Professor

    Professor New Member

    77
    0
    0
    So far, I've been priming on my Hornady LNL. It works okay most of the time, but at the same time I have more "issues" with priming than with ALL OTHER combined. This last time, I broke the plastic tip on the aluminum primer pick-up tube. It's a small problem, but at the same time it stops me from re-loading until it's fixed.
    I've seen the various hand priming tools but don't know much about them. I'm sure some are "better" than others.....I'm looking for some advice. Thanks.
     
  2. Bayou

    Bayou Active Member

    202
    31
    28
    For the most part, I use the universal primer unit on my RCBS RC press.

    I have used the Hornady hand primer, and it works OK, but does have hang-ups from time to time.

    My absolute favorite hand priming tool is no longer in production - the old Lee hand primers, the ones with the screw in shell holders, and I still use them often. Problem is, I don't have shell holders for some calibers.
     

  3. JonM

    JonM Moderator

    20,110
    15
    38
    I don't consider hand priming tools safe at all. If one goes off your holding a mini-grenade. Not fun. One of our members got his hand torn up with one of those things.

    Priming is always the hard part of loading.

    Best manual primer I know of is the rcbs automatic primer http://www.midwayusa.com/product/457599/rcbs-automatic-bench-priming-tool

    Its safe it totally seperates the primer being used from the rest of the others. I use one for some stuff. I keep 3 primer pickup tubes of small and large on hand so I've always got one handy if one breaks. Sturdiest ones are from rdbs or dillon.
     
  4. Overkill0084

    Overkill0084 Active Member

    4,910
    2
    38
    I use the RCBS Hand primer tool when the need arises. With all those tools, one must use caution. If you are paying attention you will never have a problem. The only problems I've had were my fault. I have crushed a couple. Again, I wasn't paying attention to what I was doing and it was my first time using Federal primers (reputedly the softest.) I have yet to set off a primer while reloading, so crushing does not necessarily mean detonation.
    Lee makes a good tool, but the RCBS uses normal shell holders, Lee's are proprietary.
     
  5. Rick1967

    Rick1967 Well-Known Member

    4,991
    48
    48
    I use a Lee hand primer. I had the old one but I broke the handle. I loaded tens of thousands of rounds on that old one. I have only had the new one for a few months. I have probably loaded maybe 3000 rounds with it. Just a wild guess. But I liked the old one better. The new one does keep you from getting two primers in at once. But it gives me more trouble than the old one.

    I have never popped a primer while using a hand tool. But about a week ago I got one in sideways. I pried it out with a tiny screwdriver. I was wearing safety glasses. It went bang! I almost peed myself.
     
  6. jjfuller1

    jjfuller1 New Member

    4,738
    2
    0
    Ive loaded about 2k or more of various calibers using my RCBS hand primer. I like it. Its simple to use and so far I've not had any priming issues.

    a hero is not some one with special powers, or fame.. a hero simply does what is right !
     
  7. Professor

    Professor New Member

    77
    0
    0
    I've gotten a few primers in "cock-eyed" about halfway into the pocket where they got stuck. I put my safety glasses on, put the case on the cement floor, and heated the primer with a torch. the case goes one way and the primer disappears somewhere in the basement with a bang. Works for me
     
  8. 25-5

    25-5 New Member

    3,302
    1
    0
    I have the old Lee hand primer. I only use it for rifle, so it's holding up fine. Never had any problems. I always wear eye protection while reloading.
     
  9. bradam

    bradam Member

    539
    1
    16
    If speed is not the issue: What about the rcbs ram priming unit?
     
  10. robocop10mm

    robocop10mm Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

    11,380
    1
    0
    I have to agree w/Jon. Hand priming was supposed to be better for consistant seating, but it opens ups a whole new can of worms. Get the feel down on the loading press and it should give perfectly acceptable results. I use the built in priming system on both my Dillon and my RCBS presses and am able to produce extremely accurate ammo
     
  11. rockratt

    rockratt Active Member Lifetime Supporter

    2,158
    0
    36
    I did the same thing last summer. I thought about a screwdriver but was sure I would set it off. Then I thought" The long skinny pair of needle nose pliers will do the trick". Long story short I was holding the case in one hand and the pliers in the other when it went off. Case went one way,pliers the other. Never again. I'll just set it off and get it over with the next time.
     
  12. string1946

    string1946 New Member

    1,944
    0
    0
    I used a Lee hand primer till I broke it. Have a RCBS hand primer I use sometimes and don't see an issue as long as the case mouth is pointed in a safe direction. I have used the priming system that came with my Lyman T-Mag and it works fine but I would rather prime on the down stroke rather than the up stroke so use a RCBS ram primer when priming on the press. Of course when using the Dillon I prime with it.

    Sent from my SCH-I925 using Firearms Talk mobile app
     
  13. Professor

    Professor New Member

    77
    0
    0
    In case anyone is interested, I found a YouTube video comparing Lee And RCBS hand priming tools. It appears that the RCBS is superior to the Lee (the new Lee, not the old Lee)....I have to agree. If choosing the RCBS there are two options available. One model takes shell holders and the other model has a "universal" case holding device. The universal model is known to have more problems, especially with .45 Colt.... but the need for buying a bunch of shell holders is eliminated.
     
  14. 25-5

    25-5 New Member

    3,302
    1
    0
    Thx prof. YouTube is a great source of info with a handy video on most any firearm subject.
    I have the old Lee, but we were both new when I got it.
     
  15. oO_Rogue_Oo

    oO_Rogue_Oo New Member

    376
    2
    0
    I'm sure I haven't been reloading as long as some of you have so feel free to take what I say with a grain of salt. That said; I love my RCBS universal hand priming tool. No shell holders needed. I just give the case a couple of small spins as I start the stroke of the tool be make sure its centered nicely. Works like a charm.
    http://ads.midwayusa.com/product/319794/rcbs-universal-hand-priming-tool
     
  16. Bayou

    Bayou Active Member

    202
    31
    28
    My regret is not buying more shell holders for the old style Lee hand primers. Their simplicity lends to near flawless operation.
     
  17. locutus

    locutus Well-Known Member Supporter

    16,417
    312
    83
    IME, the RCBS bench mounted tool is far better than any hand priming tool.

    It's fast, and safe. And uses standard shell holders
     
  18. Rick1967

    Rick1967 Well-Known Member

    4,991
    48
    48
    The Lee hand priming tool will prime 50 rounds of just about anything in about 3 or 4 minutes. I have not used anything that is near that fast. And no I do not point the case mouth at myself.
     
  19. locutus

    locutus Well-Known Member Supporter

    16,417
    312
    83
    Rick, the RCBS bench mounted tool is considerably faster than that. And the case mouth points up at all times.