This last couple of years has been difficult for reloaders. The shortage of bullets, primers, and powder have made it difficult or impossible for some to reload. This can be extremely frustrating. I’ve read posts online from individuals that have purchased reloading presses, and have had to wait 6 months or longer for the consumables needed to start loading. Bummer!
- Foreground: Winchester Larege Pistol Primers (WLP) a great dual-purpose primer (for magnum and non-magnum loads)
- Right: Wolf Large Pistol Primers – a good general non-magnum large pistol primer
- Back Right: CCI BR2 Benchrest Large Rifle Primers
- Back Middle: Wolf Small Pistol Primers
- Left Foreground: Federal #100 Small Pistol Primers and Federal #200 Small Pistol Magnum primers
I’ve had good luck with feeding and reliability with all of these primers. Some firearms require special considerations and attention when selecting a primer- such as my Ruger gp100 357 Magnum revolver. It has lightened springs and requires a primer with a soft cup (such as the Winchester WSP Small Pistol Primer – it does not have any plating and has soft brass construction).
So how and where can you get ahold of primers? This can be a difficult problem, but you have basically two options:
Option 1: Buy Local
It’s always nice if you can buy primers locally. The price may be higher, but you won’t need to pay shipping or hasmat (Hazardous Materials) fees to get them to your door. The problem is- it’s difficult to find gun shops or shooting ranges that sell reloading supplies, and if they do, the chance they have primers in stock (the ones that you need) is low. But it doesn’t hurt to get on the phone and see what you can find.
Option 2: Buy Online
If you can’t find what you need locally, you’ll need to buy online, or from a mail-order supplier. In this case, you *may* have more luck finding the exact primers that you need. If you purchase online, you’ll probably pay something like $15-25. for shipping, and you can add a $25. hasmat fee on top of that. Because of this overhead, you will want to try and find a supplier online that has the primers (and powder) that you need in stock, and in sufficient quantities to allow you to “stock up”. If you order in larger quantities (including a group buy with friends) the shipping and hasmat fees become more tolerable.
So, having said all that, where to buy primers online? Here are some options:
- MidwayUSA – (www.midwayusa.com) – Midway usually has good prices, has accurate inventory, and you can even sign up for product arrival notifications
- Cabelas – (www.cabelas.com) – Cabelas has a decent selection of primers and powder, and you can even find these supplies at your local Cabelas retail store if they have them in stock (assuming you live within driving distance of a store)
- Grafs and Sons – (www.grafs.com) – these guys have a good site, and give good inventory details
- Widener’s – (http://www.wideners.com/) – Good prices and good selection
- Midsouth shooter’s supply – (http://www.midsouthshooterssupply.com/) – An online retailer with a great reputation
- Powder Valley (http://www.powdervalleyinc.com/) – The website is a bit old-school, but they have really good prices and selection
There you have it- some of the popular places to buy reloading primers online. I hope you find this list useful.
I know we are all hoping that the reloading component (and general ammunition) shortage subsides, that would make our hobby much more affordable for sure. In the mean time, keep an eye on the various retailer’s inventories, and be considerate to your fellow reloaders buy not price gouging if you sell primers to someone, and order only what you’ll need in the foreseeable future.
Happy loading and shooting!