And yet another Newbie question

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by RangerEd, Dec 18, 2010.

  1. RangerEd

    RangerEd Active Member

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    I have decapped and neck sized some once fired cases using a Lee collet die. I removed the mandrel out of a FL die. Without a bump gauge, is there any way for me to find out if I have touched the shoulders of the case?
     
  2. woods

    woods Well-Known Member

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    You can set your rifle up on the bench, close the bolt on the empty chamber and get a feel for the amount of force necessary to close the bolt, put a case in and see if it gets harder to close. If it is harder then keep adjusting your FL die down in very small increments until it gets easier - like closing on the empty chamber, you have pushed the shoulder back. Don't push it back any further than necessary to slightly alleviate the crush fit.

    If there is no difference to begin with, you do not need to bump the shoulder and can just neck size with the Lee Collet.

    However, if you remove the expander assembly from the FL die then the die will size the neck MUCH SMALLER and it will make seating the bullet harder and cause runout and excessive bullet grip. You COULD then resize with the Lee Collet to re-expand the neck out to a decent ID.

    You should see if you have the crush fit first and use the FL die with the expander. IMO using the expander will probably cause some runout issues but running the Lee Collet mandrel back into the neck to re-expand the neck will probably not correct that runout you have introduced with the expander, so why bother with it. Best case scenario is that you don't have a crush fit and don't need to push the shoulder back and just neck size with the Lee Collet.
     

  3. RangerEd

    RangerEd Active Member

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    Thank you for the reply. The reason I wanted to run them through the FL die is because they were a little difficult to close the bolt on. I thought that it would cure that problem. As this is my first time reloading, I didn't want to get out to the range and have a stick bolt masking a different problem.
     
  4. gunpower

    gunpower Well-Known Member

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    gun)
    You can also smoke the cases with soot from a candle and then run the cases slowly into your chamber, when you feel the bolt getting hard to close back off and remove case. Adjust the resizing die until you can close the bolt onto the case. This will take you a few tries to do.
    You will see where the case is touching the chamber wall- neck - shoulder area!
     
  5. BountyHunter

    BountyHunter Writers Guild

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    cases will expand and grow pushing the shoulder forward. NS only will not stop this and will not correct the hard to close.

    IF you slowly adust the FL die downward until the case will just close you will be perfect every time and no need to do anything else.

    BH
     
  6. RangerEd

    RangerEd Active Member

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    Thanks for the advice. One question, I was trying to use only the collett die to reduce runout. I think im hearing this combination isn't going to work?
     
  7. Mikecr

    Mikecr Well-Known Member

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    It'll work, but as BH said, the case body has to be managed as well.
    For your approach(seperate neck & body sizing), which is totally fine, you should use a 'body die' instead of a 'FL die', so that each action is truly seperate.
    This seperate sizing can also be accomplished in one die with a 'FL bushing die' which is merely a body die with a bushing for neck sizing: Full-Length Bushing Dies and Die Conversions
    With this you could chose to remove the bushing for favor of collet neck sizing.
    I use JLC dies, and prefer bushing systems over anything else to date..