Re: Headspace gauge/resizing die question
"You are right but I tend to follow the directions From the people that designed the equipment first."
"Die directions" are not an end all. They allow noobs who don't have a clue what they're doing to make ammo that will chamber and go BOOM, but no more than that.
Given the normal slight variations in chambers, cases, presses, dies and shell holders there is no way a simplistic set of instructions can possibly explain in simple "1-2-3" steps how to properly set up a FL sizer. Doing it "right , ie, by the factory directions, will almost always make the cases too small so they WILL stretch each time they are fired.
Most bottle neck cartridges have maximum-to-minimum shoulder location variation - headspace - of about 6 thou. A "small" 1/4 turn die adjustment potentially moves case shoulders almost 18 thou, fully equal to three times the permited headspace range. Even a 1/16th turn moves the die 4.5 thou and that's more than enough change to materially affect chambering.
"In my opinion all new comers need no less than 3 books that are well read and allways back up any info from the internet with a book."
The ONLY reason a noob with a single good loading manual needs another one is for working with new cartridges or new powders and that's not a common need. Noobs with multipule manuals are NOT helped with the extras, they WILL instead be confused and lose confidence because the books always give conflicting loading data. I've been reloading since '65 and now have about 30 manuals, added less than one per year. But I only had ONE (Lyman) manual for the first five years and that didn't handicap me a bit. When I finally got my second manual I had enough experience I could intelligently deal with the conflicts.
"Head space guages will not tell you the size of your chamber after all all guns are not the same."
That's certainly true. But everyone should understand that "headspace" only applies to the chamber, not the case. We need to size our cases to match the headspace and that's fairly easy to do. The various case shoulder gages (Sinclair, Hornady, RCBS, Innovative Technoligies) allow us to match our resized cases to match the fired case shoulder location, which will be a few thou less than the actual headspace/chamber size. Actually, real headspace means nothing to a competent handloader who knows how to properly adjust his FL sizer. (And that's NOT according to the directions!)
"And also incipient separations can be caused by more than how you set your die take pressure for one."
Incipient head seperations aren't real seperations. The case stretch lines are simply the preliminary (incipient) signs of an impending real seperation. But, no matter the chamber pressure, if a case actually fits the chamber properly there will be very little stretch with each firing and the neck or body will normally split before a head seperation occurs.