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I had all kinds of problems like this only with large pistol primers. It was for a fairly short period of time. Short because I called Dillon out of frustration. Dillon said:

1. Winchester, Federal, or Rem primers only (softer cups);
2. do not push the ram bell crank handle. Push softly until you feel the case make contact with the primer. Then give it a little jab. It works! Found out I can even use CCI primers after I got used to it.
Would someone please explain what that means ( the Italicized and bold statement). My 550b Schematic shows "13409 Crank", but no "bell crank handle".
 

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I have found that my 550b using Federal Large Pistol primers, in order for the primers to be seated all the way to the bottom of the primer pocket (.45 ACP, .44 Spl.) is to pull the upright on the frame (20094) with my left hand, while pushing the (20636) Operating Handle away from me with my right hand in one continuous push-pull motion.

Also, note that using softer Federal primers lets CCI off the hook for the problem.

I think (but not sure) it was Brian Enos that suggested grinding/filing a couple of thousandths off the bottom of the (13824) primer cup would remedy high large pistol primers in the 550b. However, my experiments have shown that not to be the answer inasmuch as the bottom of the (13824) primer cup does not bottom out on the (13854) Primer Slide on the priming stroke.

I made several posts about the problem and what I had found and experimented with in regard to the 550b large primer seating issue on the Dillon Forum a couple of years ago. However, Dillon Forum site seems to have been dropped by Dillion.

And no, it is not always a loose (20093) shell plate or backed-out (14013) Roller Bracket Screws on the (14280) Roller Bracket Shell Platform, or the (13967) Primer Seating Punch incorrectly set that causes difficulty in seating Large Pistol Primers.
 

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While I can't speak to Dillon problems, I can say that the mis-seated primers were a problem to me using hand priming tools. It started with a lee auto prime and continued with every hand priming tooI tried. With my latest tool, a Hornady, the problem was solved by supporting the primer punch. Don't know if this is possible in the Dillons but with the hand tool, I made 2 short bushings, just larger than primer OD's and new larger dia. primer punches for each large and small that fit the bushing. The bushings fit in the shell holder, I had to shorten the pilot area in the feed tray that center the shell holders, but no ill affects, and new punch goes in ram of tool. The object is that the punch is supported all around as primer is pressed into case. It prevents the punch from skating off to the unsupported side when a resisting primer is encountered thus stopping an uneven seating. Maybe this concept could be adapted to the Dillon problem
I think it would be safe to say that no, it cannot be a factor in the 550b priming system.

The problem with Large Pistol primers not seating to the bottom of the primer pockets, seems to be that there is a mechanical "stop", that stops the Large Primer Seating Punch (13967) from bottoming the primer in the pocket. That and the fact that pulling forward on the press while pushing the handle on the priming stroke, seems to allow fully seating the primers. Giving the handle that quick "bump" when seating the primers also suggests slop in the machine. But, that is a pain to have to do that. Brian Enos (again, I am not sure it was him) was convinced that the bottom of the primer cup was that stop, but observation and paper pinch strips demonstrates that the bottom of the primer cup does not make contact with the Primer Slide(13854) so, taking a couple of thousandths off the bottom of the cup is not the "fix". Note that if the bottom of the primer cup was contacting the primer slide, the primer slide being Aluminium Alloy, the primer cup being steel, it would leave a mark on the primer slide of any well-used 550b.

I have never found what stops the (13775) Main Ram, (13781) Shell Plate Platform, et. al., on the priming stroke, nor has anyone including Dillon (via their defunct forum), ever answered that question. Most answers have just been the "usual suspects", including (13799) Stripper Wing Nut too tight, screws on the Roller Bracket Platform backed-out, etc.
Therefore, if any 550b (or 550c) owner can attest to what the mechanical stop is for the priming stroke and has gone through the trouble of testing their theory by pinching that point with a strip of paper (instead of just guessing), I will be very grateful.
 

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I'll check that. I'm still seating primers high and out of square despite trying some of the techniques mentioned earlier.
RE: primer punch slipping.
I have used cut pieces of steel shim stock to set the height of the primer punch to Dillon spec and found the primer punch slipping is not the problem. As a matter of fact, I shimmed it a couple of thousandths higher than spec and found that the rotation of the shell plate becomes impeded. It is notable that if Dillon had designed the set-screw to come in at the bottom instead of the side, a bottom set screw would have kept the primer punch from slipping as with its current side arraignment, while at the same time being easier to set to spec.
In short, a slipping primer punch is one of those "usual suspects" when there is a priming problem.
 

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When I set it up after installing the new primer punch parts, I did check that it was the proper height with calipers.

I set the height by trial and error while the punch assembly was in the machine to try and tighten it down while keeping it square.

Is there a better way of doing this? the primer punch assembly has a lot of wiggle room and is easy to install crooked.
Download the manual. Look at page 52.
I set the height by placing the assembly in a vise with a spent primer in the cup. There are references on the internet on how set the punch and primer slide to the correct height.

 

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How dare you!!😡
99% of us do not have a problem.
Read the above information, set the height and carry on.
Problems with the Dillon 550b, 550c have been reported for several years. If your works, all well and good. However, "...set the height and carry on." is not the solution in many cases.
 

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What regulates the depth of primer seating is the small screw on the front of the platform (black plate bolted to top of ram). I didn’t see it in the manual linked to (maybe Dillon eliminated it) to but it was on my 450B…later converted to 550B using the Dillon 550 frame kit.
The screw limits platform movement downward at the bottom of the ram stroke. Shortening the effective screw length allows deeper seating, lengthening causes shallower seating. The whole idea is to prevent crushing the priming compound. In reality, I set mine to provide a little crush then set the limit screw to allow just a thread or two more ram travel down. This allows for variations in primer pocket depth, tight vs. loose pockets, and so on.
On my 550b there is no such screw in the (13781) Shellplate Platform. The only screws in the bottom of that Platform are those holding the (14280) Roller bracket Shell Platform and the (13885) Return Bracket (for the fail safe rod).
 

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^^^ It would then require removal of the priming assembly. PITA for sure.
The height of the primer assembly is set with the primer slide on your bench. The correct height (via Dillon) is 1.215" - 1.220" from the bottom of the slide to the top of the cup. That is usually measured with the unit in one hand and your dial caliper in the other. The easiest way to set that height, is to put a spent primer in the cup and with the set-screw loose and using a small vise to "squeeze" the assembly to the the correct specification. Some people use a Vise Grip to compress the unit, but I find a small vise on my bench much easier (you can measure the height if you take care of where you put the unit in the jaws of the vise). Once the correct height is attained, re-mount the primer slide in the press. For God's sake! Don't ask me for a picture.
 

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Before I would get to the point of putting any of my press parts in a “vise”, I’m sending it back to Dillon to deal with. I don’t know how this got screwed up, but it is certainly not the norm.
If the Dillon Forum site was still up, you would see many references to setting the primer seating punch height. It is not a major undertaking. However, some of us are mechanically inclined... some are not. Like the line from an old movie: "A man has to know his limitations."
 

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The seating punch needs to be snug at the bottom of the threaded hole.
A burr on the tip of the threaded plug, or on the bottom of the threaded hole can throw things off.

A fine ceramic file with the plug in the chuck of a drill press will flatten it out nicely and uniformly.
The primer seating punch in a Dillon 550b (as per original poster), does not sit in a "threaded hole", it is not "threaded". It sits in a blind hole with a set-screw on one side to set the depth to enable 1.215-1.220 inch from the bottom of the primer slide to the top of the primer cup. You must be thinking of a different press.
 
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