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Reloading Berger Bullets


How To Select A Die Set?

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Unread 10-07-2008, 08:58 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Missoula, MT USA
Posts: 278
How To Select A Die Set?

Prices vary wildly, what do I get for paying $100s more? Just getting started reloading for the .300RUM and .300Win if that matters. The Winchester is more of a "truck gun" and the REM is a LR rig.

Greater degree of precision?

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Unread 10-07-2008, 09:10 PM
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: El Reno, OK
Posts: 1,497
Re: How To Select A Die Set?

what you get in your high end reloading dies is things like micrometer seating dies and interchangable neck bushings and others. a standard RCBS full length sizing die can do alot of things for you once you become a experinced reloader, but the level of precision and ease of reaching that level of precision (getting that .001" bullet seating depth or adjusting that neck tension to the .001" mark) that is what you get with a precision reloading die.

Steve Elmenhorst
Third Generation Shooting Supply
"Products for shooters, by shooters"
monday-friday 8:30-5:30 CST
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Unread 10-07-2008, 09:52 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Shangri-La
Posts: 964
Re: How To Select A Die Set?

Hey troutslayer

I have a lot of dies in a drawer that contributed to a learning process before I settled on the dies that I try to have in each caliber (dependent upon availability)

1. Lee Collet Neck Sizer - easy to use and does not introduce runout like the expander ball type dies. Allows you to neck size only until you develop a crush fit and have to resize the case body and push the shoulder back. $17.00
2. Redding Body Die - Will resize the case body and push the shoulder back when you develop a crush fit, use in conjunction with the Lee Collet Neck Sizer. $22.00
3. Redding, Forster or RCBS Competition Seater - Much better at seating to the exact same depth everytime which is important. Reduces runout. Average $80.00
4. Lee Factory Crimp Die - Optional but provides slightly better accuracy and slightly higher velocity with better bullet grip. $9.00

On one caliber I use a Redding Bushing Neck Sizer because the Lee Collet is not available. But I absolutely refuse to use dies with expander balls that jerk the neck around and where you have to use lube inside the neck!
If you can read this, thank a teacher.......if you are reading this in English, thank a soldier.
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Unread 10-07-2008, 10:18 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Wilmington NC
Posts: 4,787
Re: How To Select A Die Set?

One of the best die sets for the money is the Forester Bonanza BR sets for half the Redding or even less. Hornady Custom sets are fairly new and absolute top quality for very little money.

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Unread 10-08-2008, 05:10 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Mountians of SW NC, near Asheville
Posts: 1,595
Re: How To Select A Die Set?

Woods, you and I have setteled on exactly the same die "set" for exactly the same reasons!

Bounty, I agree with you for a more conventional approach. Forster makes excellant dies and gets little attention except from those who know the score! And Forster's CoAx press is the top of the heap, bar none.
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Unread 10-10-2008, 12:39 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 653
Re: How To Select A Die Set?

I think that ammo can be loaded on RCBS standard dies that is more accurate than I can shoot, but...

I still like to buy Forster and send the full length sizer body back to the factory for honing out to .003" smaller than my loaded ammo neck.

Then I back the die out a turn and do partial neck sizing.
This has been giving me great accuracy in .223, 257 Roberts Ackley Improved, and 7mm Rem Mag.
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Unread 10-10-2008, 01:03 AM
Junior Member
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Peck Idaho
Posts: 7
Re: How To Select A Die Set?

I've been stuffing cases now for nearly 50 years and most all the dies on the market do a good job. I'm kind of partial to the Lee deluxe die sets that come with both a full length sizer and the collet neck sizer. Have several different makers dies on the bench, but seem to gravitate to the Lees mostly. Good service for the money and like was said all make accurate ammo.
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