Originally Posted by dirtboy
I am just getting into this reloading stuff. I bought a Redding t-7 press. I am loading 300wsm, 30-378, 300wm. I've already purchased redding FL die and Forestor Utra Microm. seating die for my 30-378. My question is with buying standard dies, I see redding has this duluxe die set. It has a FL die, NK die, st die. If the standard FL die sizes the neck already what does the standard neck die do?? Do I need a Nk die?? I can see if I was getting the compition die, but I just want to get my feet wet a little.
Also about the 300wsm. Can I load 210 gr. bergers it that and still be able to cycle in the mag. I've seen mix reviews,but know one who acually done it. If not anyone have some recomdation for 300wsm with bergers.
Neck dies only size the neck of the brass, don't touch the body. Neck sizing works until the brass won't chamber and is used a lot by bench rest shooters. That said, I don't neck size any of my hunting ammo because I don't want any difficulties chambering a round when there is game in the cross hairs.
FL sizing can be done several ways, however two are most common.
The first way is to set the die up just like the manufacturer recommends. In other words run the ram to the top of the stroke, screw the die into the press till it firmly touches the shell holder, tighten the locking ring, lube the brass and go to work. Adjusted this way, the die will, in nearly all cases, oversize the brass bumping the shoulders back .005" or maybe more. This over sizing allows the brass to grow repeatedly in length and can result in thinning of the case wall on the inside just above the base which can in turn lead to short brass life and case head separation (not a good thing).
The other way to use the FL sizing die is to adjust it to bump the shoulders of the brass .002" or so. To do this requires being able to measure the base to shoulder distance on your brass. Sinclair, Midway, and others sell tools to do this. With the measuring tool in hand and set up on your digital calipers, measure a piece of once fired brass. Set the caliper to zero with the brass in it. The actual length doesn't matter, you just need an easy way to know when you have bumped the shoulders .002". Next, screw the FL die into the press till it touches the shell holder, then back it off one or two turns. Lube the brass and run it into the sizing die, then measure it again. Hopefully it measures the same as it did. Turn the sizing die in a fraction of a turn, resize and measure again. Repeate this until you have the sizing die screwed into the press "just" enough to bump the shoulders 0.001" to .002".
At that point, set the lock ring on the die so it will go back to the same place the next time. Then test it again on another piece of fired brass to be sure it's still set correctly. if it isn't, make the required adjustments.
The shoulder bumping routine works for all shouldered rifle cartridges including belted magnums.
That said, I'd "very" highly recommend getting a Speer reloading manual and read the whole "How To" section in the front. It's excellent, every page is packed with basic essentials the knowledge of which are key to a rewarding and safe reloading experience. If you do that it will be the best money and time you spend getting started reloading. Forms like this, especially this one are good, but they are not a replacement for putting in the time, due diligence, with a pot of coffee and a good book on the basics of reloading.