Headspacing FL Dies?

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by bowhunthard, Dec 15, 2008.

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  1. bowhunthard

    bowhunthard Well-Known Member

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    Is it possible to adjust headspacing longer with full-length sizing dies, by increasing the gap between the shellholder and the bottom of the die?

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  2. Winchester 69

    Winchester 69 Well-Known Member

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    Yes. It's called "partial full-length" sizing, and it should be standard practice to avoid case-stretching. Redding makes a set of "Competition Shellholders" to simplify the process, but trial-and-error will also work. An eighth of a turn of the die is 0.009"; getting 1 or 2 thou isn't easy.
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  3. boomtube

    boomtube Well-Known Member

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    Yes, but with a different spin.

    I believe full length sizing has occured when we size full length properly, i.e, properly bumping the shoulder to fit. It's not when we have jammed every possible thousanth of the case into the size die in a willy-nilly manner. I mean, it's the treatment of the case that matters when FL sizing, not to be determined by the tolerances of a die and shell holder, right?

    I rarely "FL" size the "right" way by fully jamming a case into a die. Sometimes that's needed but only sometimes. It's much better to only insert our cases enough to allow them to chamber easily. I think - am certain, actually - the reason so many "experts" say to only FL reload a case five times and toss them to prevent head sperations are over FL resizing by "following the makers directions", creating the effect of excessive headspace and resulting stretching.

    Some of my hot loaded 30-06 cases have been loaded as many as ten times. In fourty years have never had a head seperation nor any indications of one. My cases die by neck splits and an occasional annealing stops most of that. If I had not sized my cases correctly, to fit my chamber, rather than "right", they would not have last nearly so long.
     
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2008
  4. bowhunthard

    bowhunthard Well-Known Member

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    Thanks guys. In order to check this out, what do you think of Hornady's headspace guage?

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  5. boomtube

    boomtube Well-Known Member

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    It's a very good tool to measure the "headspace" of YOUR fired (and resized) cases. So is the RCBS Precision Case Mic.

    Carefully adjust your FL die to set YOUR shoulders back about 2 thou and you will have "full length" resized them properly to fit YOUR chamber, if not your cousin's or SAAMI's.
     
  6. pjracer

    pjracer Well-Known Member

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    i just learned that the quality of your die can hinder you getting the correct shoulder bump. i switched to forester dies from rcbs and found it was easier to get the. 002" i like and have some fairly tight chambers on my rifles.
     
  7. boomtube

    boomtube Well-Known Member

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    PJ, that's good but you can save some money by lightly grinding 2-3 thou off the bottom of any die that's too long. It won't hurt a thing and you can easily raise the die if you need to use it for a longer chamber later.
     
  8. 4xforfun

    4xforfun Well-Known Member

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    I use the .002 setback method with good measuring tools when setting up a die. BUT.......I also disasemble the bolt and start sizing the brass untill I can chamber the brass, push the bolt forward, and the bolt closes pretty much by gravity. It should fall freely. You MUST start with a bare bolt. I have found that this is usualy .002" anyway, but like to run them into the chamber this way. Of course I still measure while I do this process. This is also a good way to see if your die and your chamber are a good "match". My comp gun is one that does not match the FL die that I use, so I only neck size for that chamber, only ocasionaly do I FL sizing them. (long story)

    This would be a great way to do it if you don't have much in the way of measuring tools!! Of course, having a disasembly tool (if needed) makes the job of taking your bolt apart a cinch. If you don't have one.....you should get one.
     
  9. larrywillis

    larrywillis Well-Known Member

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    This is our new Digital Headspace Gauge.

    I use it to measure shoulder clearance (headspace). Check it out on our website at www.larrywillis.com It's quick and easy to compare your handloads to one of your fireformed cases. That shows exactly how much to adjust your FL dies so that your handloads will fit perfectly in YOUR chamber.

    [​IMG]

    It works on ANY caliber, and it doesn't require special bushings or other tools to make it work. It also compares seating depth (from the ogive). ​

    - Innovative​
     
  10. WRG

    WRG Well-Known Member

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    I know what I want for Christmas!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  11. overbore

    overbore Well-Known Member

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    What took you so darn long???? my check just went out--- Best wishes
    Overbore