Exploding primer tube

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by smlranger, Nov 7, 2011.

  1. carver

    carver Moderator Supporting Member

    Well, I just read the whole thread, and all I can say is anything is possible! I've been reloading for over 40 years, and have never had anything go wrong, yet. Well, there was the one time that I forgot to add powder to a load!! Though I don't use the Dillion, nor do I use the pick up tube, I still find it hard to believe that this could have happened, but I do believe that it did. Dillon can't explain it, and they told the guy this happened to that they had no plans to change the design of the pick up tube. I'm sure that there will be others here that do use the Dillon products, maybe they will have some ideas of their own.

  2. 243winxb

    243winxb Member

    Aug 12, 2011
    Primer dust can build up inside the tube. The tubes should be cleaned to remove this residue now & then. Not all primers are sealed with a coating. This guy forced the primer feed, not a good thing to do. [​IMG]
  3. Brisk44

    Brisk44 New Member

    Mar 6, 2011
    Anytime you force something, bad things can happen. These parts and processes are designed to operate smoothly, when you force them you're asking for trouble.
  4. cpttango30

    cpttango30 Guest

    That's what SHE said.....
  5. I must have missed something in the OP's original post. What did he force? I thought he said he had used the pick up tube to pick up 50 primers and when he placed the tube in the press and pulled the pin, it went bang!

    Also, how do folks generally clean the primer pick up tubes?
  6. Caneman

    Caneman Active Member

    Oct 22, 2010
    LOL, u bad man :D
  7. zant

    zant Well-Known Member

    Sep 24, 2009
    In 25yrs of using a Dillion 550,I can't begin to know how many times I've filled my primer tubes-no problems....I blow out the tubes once a week with air.....
  8. 243winxb

    243winxb Member

    Aug 12, 2011
    After jaming for the 3th time, i gave my old RL 450 a slam, i got lucky, no kaboom. [​IMG]
    Yes, he pulled the pin, setting off the primer dust in the tube. You didnt miss a thing :)
  9. LDBennett

    LDBennett Well-Known Member

    Dec 20, 2003
    Hesperia, CA
    I too have never had any primer, in the tube, on the bench or in the press ever go off. I, as you probably already know, use a Dillon RL550B press and have for about 25 years.

    But there is a potential problem that I solved before anything happened and it was/is Static Electricity. Where I live a walk across the carpet in my stocking feet can give me one whooper of a spark to a light switch. I live in the High Desert in CA. My reloading area benches sit on an electrostatic rubber mat. It is made to be conductive and is tied to ground. Any potential voltage built up on you is immediately discharged harmlessly when you walk onto the mat.

    I worked in Aerospace electronics and our assembly area either had these mats or the assembly people had to wear wristbands tied to ground. The science says almost any static discharge in semi-conductor electronics harms them and eventually their life will be shortened. Mine will be too if a sparks jumps from me to the powder measure or to a tube of live primers.

    Maybe it was a static discharge that caused the problem?

  10. medalguy

    medalguy Member

    Feb 20, 2009
    New Mexico
    I have been using Dillon presses since about 1984 and have loaded too many rounds to try to count, well over 200,000 in that time. Never had the first problem with a primer tube, or even a single primer detonating in a machine. Of course, if the primer feed stuck three times, I sure wouldn't FORCE it the next try! :eek:
  11. Static discharge is being suggested in that thread as the culprit. He noted the RH in the area was low at the time. Folks have suggested grounding the press and wearing the wristbands while handling primers. Others have merely suggested not reloading during periods of RH below 25%.
  12. mncarpenter

    mncarpenter Member

    Nov 14, 2009
    i think you are probably right. I killed a $500 video card , installing in my computer w/o a wrist strap. Won't pull that stunt again. I don't have a lot of static in my house, but it doesn't take much.
  13. LDBennett

    LDBennett Well-Known Member

    Dec 20, 2003
    Hesperia, CA
    smlranger said:

    "Others have merely suggested not reloading during periods of RH below 25%."

    That would mean I NEVER reloaded except on rainy days. You know what they say about the desert? "It never rains in the desert". A humid day here is when the humidity is above 15%!

    Even a small static mat (correctly grounded!) or using the grounded wrist strap is a better choice that limiting the times when you reload. The mat does not have to be big but just cover the area that you might stand or sit on when handling either primers or powder or use the press.

  14. Any suggestions of getting a good ground in a basement? I could drill a hole in the floor and drive a grounding rod into the ground below the concrete floor but that seems like overkill. Grounding to the ground pin on the nearby electrical outlet is a possibility but if there was a fault somewhere in the circuit, I'd not want to have any current get on that line.
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