Primers

a. General. The primer is that component in a propelling charge explosive train which produces the flame that ignites the propellant.

(1) Artillery primers contain a small quantity of sensitive explosive and a larger quantity of black powder or other propellant in a cylindrical housing of metal, cardboard or other appropriate material. In mortar ammunition, an ignition cartridge, which ignites the propellant, is used with the primer and may or may not be assembled to it. Unassembled, the primer and the ignition cartridge are considered separate components; assembled, the primer becomes a component of the ignition cartridge.

(2) In fixed, semifixed and separated ammunition, the primer and/or ignition cartridge is assembled to the ammunition at the time of manufacture. In separate-loading ammunition, the primer is inserted into the breechblock of the weapon by the user immediately prior to firing.

b. Types. Most artillery primers are classified according to the method of firing as electric, percussion, and percussion-electric.

(1) Electric. This type of primer is fired by heat generated when an electric current passes

Figure 4-14. Percussion primer.

A - insulator

9 - firing knob

C - gun cotton around electric element 0 - metal seal

E - firing plunger f - ignitton wire G - ignition charge (black powder)

A - insulator

9 - firing knob

C - gun cotton around electric element 0 - metal seal

E - firing plunger f - ignitton wire G - ignition charge (black powder)

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Figure 4-15. Combination electric and percussion pimer.

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Figure 4-15. Combination electric and percussion pimer.

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