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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Tested recent available Argentina SP Primers. IMO they are as good as others if not better.

Testing parameters:
Caliber: 357Mag 18.5" Carbine Rifle
Brass: Starline new sized and trimmed to length
Bullet: Nosler HP 158 grain
Power: Ramshot True Blue @ suggested starting weight of 8.5 grains (all charges weighed on the same digital scale)
Primers: Argentina SP, CCI 500 SP, Fed SR, CCI 400 SR
OAL: 1.591" (+/-0.001")

Findings: At this loading pressure no difference in fired brass or primer conditions or deformations were noted and rifle recoil difference or sound levels between test loads were none existing. True blue is a middle of the road burn rate powder similar to unique and will fully burn within the rifle length bore length. True blue loading data supports the use of std small pistol primers and is usually listed with winchester small pistol or cci small pistol types in the load data table.

Supporting data:
Five each duplicate rounds were loaded for each primer type in the same session for all primer test groups with batch processing on a single stage press (20 rounds sized, trimmed, primed, charged in single set per type of step). All shots where fired at a single session and measured with the same chronograph setup at prox 8 LF from the muzzle. A bore snake was used once before each 5 shot sting with about 30 seconds between each shot within the string. About 10 mins. of cool down period was used between each shot string. No difference in barrel temperature was noticed between the different sting groups. Velocity and shot variations were recorded for each string:

Argentina SP - Ave 1419, H 1438, L 1412, E5 25.4, SD 10.7, AD 7.5, 1=1438, 2=1418, 3=1414, 4=1413, 5=1412
CCI SP - Ave 1389, H 1423, L 1300, E5 122.4, SD 50.5, AD 35.3, 1=1300, 2=1398, 3=1402, 4=1423, 5=1420
FED SR - Ave 1428, H 1449, L 1408, E5 40.7, SD 14.8, AD 10.2, 1=1433, 2=1428, 3=1449, 4=1408, 5=1424
CCI SR - Ave 1429, H 1440, L 1422, E5 18.3, SD 7.4, AD 5.8, 1=1424, 2=1432, 3=1422, 4=1440, 5=1425

The Argintina SP primers are on par or better than some of the others tested in this minimum size testing group. Out of the four types tested only the CCI SR had less variation. I would like to have had both WSP and WSR primers for this test but there were none available. None of the tested primers were more than 2 years old and have been kept in a climate controlled environment.

Accuracy: The rifle was fired on a makeshift shooting bench with a bi-pod support. Distance to target is 35 yards. Note the rifle used has been lined with a chrome liner and has a better than factory chamber installed. A 4 power scope was used for sighting purposes (old eyes). Xs in target were there before this session. The center fowler/fodder group was with similar power level ammo but not part of the test group - it was used to warm up the barrel only. The C SR group contained 5 shots but one went in another hole (wasn't the one in the red dot hole though).

254438
 

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Sorry if this is an obvious question, I'm a total noob. But, what I will be loading once I get primers and powder is .38/.357 for use in both 2" and 4" revolvers and lever action carbines. You seem to be saying that you CAN use Small Rifle primers in .357 loadings for carbines/rifles? Can you use the SR primers for pistol loadings as well? At the moment I only have the newest Lyman book and the newest ABC's of Reloading as reference books. Looking at the Lyman, the loading for .357 seem the same for both pistol and rifle. For example: Blue Dot for both on the 158gr HP is 9.6 grains. I'm wondering because I've only been looking for SP in my searches and if I can use SR too then that might get me primers sooner than later. TIA.
 

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You test looks very well thought out and prepared but still, in my opinion you have proven they work well but not much more. If you really want to know if some primers are "better" than other you will have to load and shoot more than 1 strings of 5 rounds per primer. An extreme spread of 122.4 can hardly be right for example and if it is correct I am sure it will pop up with all primers if you load more rounds.
Also the primer with the highest extreme spread shooting one of the best groups tells me it matters not or very little what primer you use.

Still it's nice to know you can buy those primers without a second thought :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Sorry if this is an obvious question, I'm a total noob. But, what I will be loading once I get primers and powder is .38/.357 for use in both 2" and 4" revolvers and lever action carbines. You seem to be saying that you CAN use Small Rifle primers in .357 loadings for carbines/rifles? Can you use the SR primers for pistol loadings as well? At the moment I only have the newest Lyman book and the newest ABC's of Reloading as reference books. Looking at the Lyman, the loading for .357 seem the same for both pistol and rifle. For example: Blue Dot for both on the 158gr HP is 9.6 grains. I'm wondering because I've only been looking for SP in my searches and if I can use SR too then that might get me primers sooner than later. TIA.
If you are new to loading or reloading please only follow the instructions and data supplied in your manual. Do not trust any data provided over the internet.

The above provided information uses minimum charges only and is to compare primers only. At higher pressures the differences in the primer type may increase and put you above safe limits. FPS is a good reference for pressure level but does not always equal less or more chamber pressure. Slower powders will produce higher velocities with less average pressure while fast powders can exceed safe pressures and still have a couple hundred feet per second of velocity less than the slow powders.

The take from the above data is that the Argentina primers are good but also are closer to small rifle than other standard small pistol primers. What ever you use to load with start with light loads and work your way up to what shoots best in your application. Nine time out of ten your most accurate loadings will be closer to the minimum charge than the max.

I have been loading off and on for years. I can also contest that experimenting must be done always with a known safety level factor. I can also testify that about 35 years ago a surplus 303 rifle blew up in my face because I used a can of powder that someone gave me that wasn't what was marked on the can. When you reload your life is in your hands always know and never guess.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
You test looks very well thought out and prepared but still, in my opinion you have proven they work well but not much more. If you really want to know if some primers are "better" than other you will have to load and shoot more than 1 strings of 5 rounds per primer. An extreme spread of 122.4 can hardly be right for example and if it is correct I am sure it will pop up with all primers if you load more rounds.
Also the primer with the highest extreme spread shooting one of the best groups tells me it matters not or very little what primer you use.

Still it's nice to know you can buy those primers without a second thought :)
I agree about the SDs and printing on the target. The small SDs mean allot more at longer ranges though. The groupings were less important to me in this test than the distance above and below the point of aim was. Human error has to be taken into consideration as it plays into each step of the process including pulling the trigger - I'm a little shaky now-a-days. I'd view the chrono data as superseding the groups as my holding still shouldn't have effected it like it did the targets.
 

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I was thinking the same thing tuckerd1. Due to the higher chamber pressures in rifles the cup is a lot more stout and handguns with weak strikes may not get the desired BANG you’re looking for, or so I’ve been told. 😉
 

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I was thinking the same thing tuckerd1. Due to the higher chamber pressures in rifles the cup is a lot more stout and handguns with weak strikes may not get the desired BANG you're looking for, or so I've been told. ?
In an auto loader that IS a real concern.In a revolver it would seem it would'nt matter.But SP have appeared now and then,SR have'nt.
 

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I was using Ramshot Exterminator for .223 and I started out loading some test rounds on the low end and they were kinda whimppy.Then I loaded they next batch more towards the Max and my primers got flattened and you couldn’t pick up or touch they extracted shells for over 5 minutes.If it was more towards dusk they would probably be glowing.Ramshot powers,I think a little goes along way.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Update:
I loaded a few 38 spl with a moderate to low charge of w231 and the argentina sp primers. I didnt crono them but they appeared to be hot for that load almost like a +p level. These were test fired in a solid handgun and not a carbine.

If you try to use those for faster powders approach with caution. Especially in smaller high pressure cases like 9mm/40mm/10mm. I dont think I would try them with bullseye based on the 231 results in the bigger and low pressure 38 case. And maybe not at all in a 10 even with BD or TB - most manuals caution about using anything other than what is listed for the 10 and I agree.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Update continued testing on the Argintina SP primers.

I've worked up upper charge weight loads for heavy 357 rifle loads. They work fine with lil gun with antisipated velocities and very good SDs. These were for 125 at 2100fps 165 at 1780fps, and 200 grain at 1440fps all cast bullets (200s were in 38 length cases at 1.6 OAL). I have not tried with any w296 loadings.

I worked up some 9mm with TB. No FTF but firing pin dipples were lighter than with cci sp primers. Fired in a ruger p-89 and also a Berretta m-9 both with duty rated springs. Flattening was less than usual - loads seemed hotter than expected similar to the 231 test in 38spl.

As in earlier test, the primers perform more like spm or sr than std sp.
 
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