Forster CoAx press

cgarb

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Oct 7, 2012
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I'm looking to upgrade my current press to a CoAx. All the reviews I've watched and read are favorable to this press. I was reading an article on accurateshooter and it said that crossbolt style lockrings can only be used with this press. Why would that be? What would set screw style lock rings do that crossbolt rings will not? I cant see why this would matter. I watched a youtube review and all brands of lockrings will fit into the press. Maybe someone here can enlighten me on why this is or is not true. Thanks
 

rcoody

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Jul 1, 2015
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I'm looking to upgrade my current press to a CoAx. All the reviews I've watched and read are favorable to this press. I was reading an article on accurateshooter and it said that crossbolt style lockrings can only be used with this press. Why would that be? What would set screw style lock rings do that crossbolt rings will not? I cant see why this would matter. I watched a youtube review and all brands of lockrings will fit into the press. Maybe someone here can enlighten me on why this is or is not true. Thanks

I use a co-ax. buy the lock rings by the dozen. They are cheap. Change out the lock rings on my Sinclair dies first thing. Same way with my lee decapping dies. Most of my dies are forster and they come with them.

The Sinclair dies come with a lock ring and set screw. the set screw protrudes a little bit. It can bind up in the slot the lock ring fits into. When that happens then the self centering part of the design for front and back is defeated. As long as you keep the set screw facing forward in the slot this won't happen but as that die turns in the slot the setscrew binds. I have enough distractions at the loading bench and I forget to watch for it. Now I just change them out.

I also don't like driving a setscrew into the threads of the die. Bound to bugger them up.
 

dok7mm

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I love my Co-Ax press. Use it primarily for bullet seating and neck sizing because of the floating aspect of the design. I use my old RCBS rock and Redding Big Boss for the heavy work. Several years ago, I switched out all my die rings to Hornady cross-bolts and really like them + they work fine in Co-Ax press.
 

cgarb

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Oct 7, 2012
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So the only real issue is the set screw binding in the slot? Pretty sure I can figure out a way around that issue. Im not worried about messing up the threads either. Once they are set they will be set. A little lead shot in before the screw will negate any of that anyway. Just need to prevent it from turning not lift a house with it.
 

gohring3006

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The Forester lock rings are aluminum. The steel rings could cause wear in the die slot. Only a few steel lock rings are thick enough to work.... Hornady will work, RCBS will not... Midway sells the Forester lock rings and they are cheap. If you are going to get a $300.00 press why skimp on the lock rings?
 

cgarb

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I agree I dont want to skimp, thats why I'm trying to do my homework and avoid unnecessary spending. If I can modify my lock rings and make them work thats more money to spend on bullets and powder which is where I would rather spend it. Nobody got better at shooting by practicing switching out lock rings.
 

gohring3006

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Use what ever rings you want...
But using a ring that doesn't fit right and manipulating it so the lock screw doesn't hit the press, isn't consistency. I have used my CO-AX for years, and I won't use anything but Forester rings with the exception of Hornady rings in a pinch if I don't have any Foresters...
Good luck, but saving 20$ for lock rings isn't the place to cut corners in my opinion...
 

Trickymissfit

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a cross locking screw will keep itself squarer tom the threads better than shifting the lock nut thread with asset screw. Just the nature of the beast. There are better lock nuts, but also not very adaptable to this use. I might add here that the Lyman lock nut works very well in the Forster (I like it better).

My press is actually a Bananza built press, and the lock ring slot is very tight. I've found a few Forster rings that were literally metal to metal going into the slot. I suppose I could have ground .002"/.003" off the bottom face, but being aluminum makes them a pain to grind. I called Forster about this issue, and the sent me a dozen new ones. Still very tight fit. The Lyman rings are about .005" thinner, and seem to float in the slot better. Plus they actually have a little more contact area.

Someone posted about doing the heavy work on a Redding or an RCBS. The Co-Ax is more powerful! Put the same length handle on each press.
gary
 

cgarb

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Kind of wondering how the aluminum holds up because of on most presses it functions as a locknut and the stress of sizing the case is put on the threads of the die. In the Coax the force is put on the threads of that skinny locknut that only has 3 or 4 threads of contact. Maybe steel would be a better choice in this application?
 

gohring3006

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Most likely the Aluminum rings are made of 7075 Aluminum.
Which has a higher tensil strength than the cast iron, that the press is made from...
 
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Trickymissfit

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Kind of wondering how the aluminum holds up because of on most presses it functions as a locknut and the stress of sizing the case is put on the threads of the die. In the Coax the force is put on the threads of that skinny locknut that only has 3 or 4 threads of contact. Maybe steel would be a better choice in this application?

I've done a lot of heavy case forming with the aluminum lock rings in the past. Never saw any issues with them. Just thinking about the shear strength factor of 4.4x.070" in aluminum (not steel), I think your rapidly approaching six figures per square inch. I would not get too excited. To be honest, the only thing that bothers me about them is the ten cent locking screw threaded into aluminum. I change mine out for good quality cap screws (hex socket).
gary
 

digger11

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Nov 21, 2012
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I load for about 25 different cartridges. All my dies have Forster lock rings. Bite the bullet and get it done,, adjust them once and start shooting the best ammo you can produce by hand.
 

cgarb

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Oct 7, 2012
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Press just showed up today. Have to get it mounted up to the bench this week and get rolling.
 

cgarb

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Oct 7, 2012
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Press is mounted to the bench now, it came with 2 crossbolt lock rings. After seeing how those work and looking at the fitment of the lock rings I was going to attemt to modify I have decided to bite the bullet and buy the Forster lock rings. The hex shaped lock rings just dont fit the press nearly as good and there is way more contact area with the round style. Though I did recieve sound advice here, I had to see for myself before spending my hard earned cash for them. Thanks to all who replied.
 
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