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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I know there are a bunch of youtube video's that go over depriming, reloading and even converting x39 casings but there seems to always be a hang up in a particular process. That would be the berdan vs boxer primer dilemma. While you can figure out how to remove the berdan primers, the casing is not reloadable without buying more berdan primers. Berdan primers are harder to come by to begin with but then there are different sizes as well, making room for error. You can try to use standard large rifle boxer primers but they are a little too small and don't seat in tightly at all. Two methods I've seen to overcome this is to either use some type of liquid adhesive to hold them in place or to make a collet to allow the primer to fit in snug. One method is messy and doesn't allow you to work with the casings right away (drying) and the other takes a lot of precision and possibly special tools. I wouldn't trust an adhesive to hold in a primer anyhow would you? With the brass berdan primed casings Bullet Guy and mosquito sent me I've come up with a super simple solution. I can't believe no one has done it yet. Or at least I haven't seen it in my research.

The tools I used were an old pluggable drill, a hammer, a pair of scissors, a 1/4 flat head screwdriver tip, 1/16, 11/64 inch drill bits.

The first thing I did was use the 1/16 drill bit to remove the spent primer. I aligned the bit with one of the flash holes and went in from the top of the casing. After the primer was drilled through I used the scissors to ream out the hole in the primer and pried it out. Note that the 1/16 hole is much larger than the original flash hole.


Next I used the11/64 bit to remove the anvil. I had to be carful not to drill too far to disturb the flash holes. I drilled just enough to leave a "cup" and had to be very careful about the bit running and not staying centered.


Next, I once again used the 1/16 bit to drill the center hole. I don't know why but I decided to also drill out the other flash hole. In reality this made the structure weaker and is not needed. I guess I was having too much fun.


At this point the casing is pretty much ready to go. Except for the primer problem. I knew that it wouldn't work but just to confirm it for myself I placed a large rifle primer in the pocket. I was able to do so by simply pushing it in with my thumb. Obviously not good and turning the casing upside down the primer would slightly hang in there or fall out completely.

So here it is. The magic. Using the 1/4 inch flat head tip I made a simple stake crimp! Yeah I know. There are manufactures that already do this but they are pretty rare. I guess since reloading x39 is not mainstream no one has thought to do this? Anyway a couple two tree light wacks with the hammer and tip and I was in business.


Now trying to push the primer in with my thumb was not possible. Since I dont have my dies yet I took the primer and layed it on a counter. Placed the pocket on top of it and then used the side of the hammers head to press down on the case mouth. I could feel the positive pressure it took to seat the primer.




The primer was nice and snug and the experiment was a great success. I now just have to come up with a simple way to remove the primers without altering the flash holes. I bet I could find an easier way of removing the anvil too. I think the little dimple inside the casing could be used as a guide but I will have to figure out a good way to make the alignment precise. Anyway there it is. Please add any ideas.
 

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They make a tool for removing berdan primers. Or a guy I know says he uses a small punch and pops them out from the inside. Not sure if this tool will work on 7.62x39 tho. RCBS Berdan Decapping Tool
 

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Aren't Berean primer pockets a different diameter than Boxer? In other words do you need a specialty Berean primer for reloading?
 

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Aren't Berean primer pockets a different diameter than Boxer? In other words do you need a specialty Berean primer for reloading?
This is the reason for the 3 point crimp after drilling out the fladh hole. Berdan are larger than boxer.

A tri wing scew driver bit might do it in one shot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
They make a tool for removing berdan primers. Or a guy I know says he uses a small punch and pops them out from the inside. Not sure if this tool will work on 7.62x39 tho. RCBS Berdan Decapping Tool
Yeah. I've seen that tool. From the reviews I've seen its pretty crappy. Also the price is ridiculous considering you can buy two entire die sets for that price. The best contraption I've seen is this but it's homemade. Seems simple enough to build though.

This is the reason for the 3 point crimp after drilling out the fladh hole. Berdan are larger than boxer.

A tri wing scew driver bit might do it in one shot.
Bingo.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Why not just reload with Berdan primers?

TULA PRIMER LARGE RIFLE 7.62x39 BERDAN

$30/1000
The main problem with berdan primers is actually getting the spent primers out. Although there are various methods and contraptions to remove the primers, they tend to be slow and tedious and sometimes messy(hydraulic method). As mentioned above berdan primers are also a bit harder to find. At this point in time it's a little bit better as we can actually go to a brick and morter front and pick up primers but I haven't seen berdans on the shelves. It's also nice to just have a standard primer size on hand for all of your rifles. It's a little bit of work up front but I think it's well worth it in the end. I'm currently working on a 1 step process that will allow you to go straight to a standard die press.
 
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