Saturday, January 31, 2015

Lee Ram Prime : or : The easiest priming unit I've tried

Lee Precision has some very simple and easy to use tools that I seem to always be pulling out to use. Their powder dipper sets are always utilized when I'm running small batches of test ammo, they allow me to get to within 5% of the intended load and trickle powder into my measure until I get the desired charge. Another one of their handy items is their "Lee Ram Prime" unit.  

The Lee Ram prime is a 2 part tool, the shell holder and ram adapter.
  This is not a priming unit for doing massive runs of ammo and you are forced to handle the primers one at a time....something a few reloaders really dislike doing. I have a nice RCBS priming unit that does not have a dedicated spot on my table, it uses pickup tubes and though its easy to use  I dislike setting it up to only load 15 rounds or so. Which is where the Lee Ram Prime comes in.

Shell holder installed.
The Priming unit is quick and easy, The shell holder...screws into the top of your press in place of your reloading die. The ram adapter goes where the shell holder normally would and you are ready to prime!
The priming unit does come with two sizes of "piston and collar" assemblies for the two sizes of primers you will be using. I even use this set up with a special 12ga shell holder to prime magtech all brass hulls for black-powder loads in my coach gun.

I always leave the press handle down and load a new primer in from this position. No real need to drop the ram all the way down to try and fumble a primer in there.

Primer in place

Case being primed
The lee ram prime is also really handy with the Lee hand press. For a small reloading set up it is a really convienent way to prime your cases. Now I know some will point out the fact my Rockchucker HAS a priming station on it, however for various reasons I've never been satisfied with the way the press mounted unit performed, I feel a lot of people have that same feeling as you see the units in junk reloading boxes often. Lee sells the tool for under $15 or so depending on where you get it from. I believe it is a worthwhile tool if you do small batch reloading and don't worry so much about production.

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