Competition die set, worth it?

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by ReachOutNTouchSomething, Jan 12, 2013.

  1. ReachOutNTouchSomething

    ReachOutNTouchSomething Well-Known Member

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    I have a friend that has a brand new RCBS competition die set for my 308 win. I checked midway and they seem to be upwards of $90 versus $32 i can get a standard die set for, he is asking $50. Is it worth the extra $18 or should i just pick up a standard 2 die set?
     
  2. Gene

    Gene Well-Known Member

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    I own 4 sets of Redding Competition dies, and they are easily worth $50 used. The seater is great becaUSE YOU CAN LOWER oal .001" at a time. The sizer requires appropriate bushings. The type S sizer is just as good.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2013

  3. Hairtrigger

    Hairtrigger Well-Known Member

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    It sure wont hurt.
    I doubt you will see a difference on your targets unless you are using quality prepped brass
     
  4. ReachOutNTouchSomething

    ReachOutNTouchSomething Well-Known Member

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    I heard redding dies are the way to go, I can get a 2 die stnd set for around 35 but I can't find much information on these RCBS competition dies. Would it be better to go with standard redding dies or the RCBS competition.
     
  5. SidecarFlip

    SidecarFlip Well-Known Member

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    Here's my input and I just purchased a complete 308 set FL/NS/Seater.

    I get my dies peacemeal, that is, I like the RCBS Competition/Match grade bullet seater for a couple reasons, mainly because bullet insertion is in the front, through a machined window, You drop it in, not push it up underneath. I like that, always have, in fact, every caliber that I can get the front load seater, I get. I don't like putting the projectile in the bottom of the die, I want to see it physically and I want to see it get seated. The front load seater does just that.

    I also like the RCBS bullet seater micrometer head. It has just enough tension to remain in a fixed position plus you can set it in 0.001 increments or halve the hash marks for a 0.0001 depth, not that, that would ever be necessary because contrary to opinion, multiple component tolerances in brass and projectiles (unless custom built) will never be better than 0.001 and probably much less.

    I'm not a fan of RCBS non-bushing dies so I get Redding FL and NS dies. Add them to the RCBS Bullet seater in the RCBS box.

    All your suppliers, Midway, Natchez, Sinclair, Graf's, sell seperate dies.

    I'd buy the bullet seater and possibly the FL die and get a bushing NS fro Redding. FL resize is not as common as NS on bottleneck cases. I tend to only FL resize (Lapua excluded) only if switching chambers/rifles. Be sure to gage your brass for elongation and trim accordingly......

    Having said that, RCBS offers bushing dies but I've never used them.

    I use Lee for all my straight walled pistol cartridges BTW.
     
  6. Gene

    Gene Well-Known Member

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    Another consideration: The Harrels F/L bushing sizer die is affordable and accurate. Send them $75 and 3 fired cases, you get a sizer that is custom fit to your chamber. Turn around time is about 2 weeks.
     
  7. SidecarFlip

    SidecarFlip Well-Known Member

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    I'll probably take some flak for this but. IMO, strictly IMO, too much emphasis is placed on concentricity and case neck rounot. It's brass and swaged bullets. This isn't aerospace stuff. It's go bang.

    Now, shooting over a mile is one thing but 99% of hunting and range shooting are distances well below that.

    I've never been concerned with concentricity, runout or matching bullet weights in a 308. I load 'em and pop 'em.

    My 338 is another matter......:)
     
  8. 7stw

    7stw Well-Known Member

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    I will second Sidecarflip's take on the RCBS comp seater. The increments are dead on at .001 every time, and the front window is convenient. The F/L die that comes with the set is also nice, but I believe that the biggest asset to the RCBS set is the seater.
    Redding, on the other hand, makes exceptional dies. Their bushing dies are second to none.
    Bottom line is, like anything else is, junk in , is junk out. The better the die, the better and more importantly CONCENTRIC ammo you will produce. My take is they are worth the extra $$$$ anyway.
     
  9. SidecarFlip

    SidecarFlip Well-Known Member

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    I have a love affair with black oxide finished tools, guns, precision instruments, anything. I prefer Parkerized or hot mineral salts controlled corrosion which is what Parkerizing is. Bluing comes in No 2 and painted a distant 3.

    RCBS likes Parkerization. So do I. When I was doing my apprenticeship I got to stand watch ocassionally on the parkerizing tanks and transfer and wash parts. It's not a nice process but the end result is.

    Most gage shops use it. I'd like to do it at home but the salts are caustic and probably hell on plumbing, plus it stinks.:)
     
  10. Reloader222

    Reloader222 Well-Known Member

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    Foster or Redding is the way to go. The seater die of the RCBS Competition Set will not give you the same accuracy as the 2 prior one's.
     
  11. SidecarFlip

    SidecarFlip Well-Known Member

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    Please put IMO in front of your post. That is your opinion, not necessarily the opinion of others......:)

    Accuracy on seating depends entirely on prior preparation of components.
     
  12. Greyfox

    Greyfox Well-Known Member

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    My view is that it depends on the shooter's requirements, and perhaps his budget. I had quite a few rifles/calibers over the years, some used for competition, some for hunting, that I just bought a basic two dye kit and got great results. I have several rigs that I still use standard dyes and get .25-.5 MOA, run outs less than .003", and ES of less than 15FPS. I have also had a few rigs that shot best with certain bushings, lots of seating depth changes, and different components to get an optimum load. The competition kit sure came in handy. I would also have to say that in those cases I expected this before hand with the particular rifle or caliber and went for the competition set understanding that I wanted to do a lot of loadwork.