Hornady Match grade die help

Ross1147

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I have 2 of these die sets. Usually run RCBS, but I do have a couple Redding, whidden, and Lee sets as well. The issue is my new 280ai seating die. I’ve never had this issue? In order to seat bullets and get the best use out of the micro seating stem I only get 2.5 threads into my press? Has anybody else had this issue? Is it normal? I can’t even adjust it to barely cam over in the press with an empty case in it? Hornady doesn’t put markings on their dies, so all I have to go by is the box that says 280ai. The FL bushing die seems to be normal. What gives?

First pic is the Hornady 280ai seating die next to a Hornady 25SST seating die.

Second is my Redding 6.5-06AI seating die with a sized 6.5-05ai case.

Last is virgin 280ai brass pushed into seating due as far as it will go.

Thanks!

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cboom

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Something strange is going on there. This is a pic of brass in my 338 lapua die. The nut is set where I use it. Is the micro seater maybe screwed almost all the way down? Also don’t know how much of a difference it would make but mine came with two different sized seating pieces (not sure what they are called) to make contact with the bullet. Do you have the larger or smaller one in there?
 

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Ross1147

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I have the VLD stem in there. The one with the bigger hole. Even if I take the micro stem out the case only goes that far. Almost seems like they didn’t hone out the inside of the die far enough?
 

Jud96

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Did you put a case in the shell holder, run the ram up, screw the die down until it touches the case mouth, then back off a full turn?
 

cboom

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I have the VLD stem in there. The one with the bigger hole. Even if I take the micro stem out the case only goes that far. Almost seems like they didn’t hone out the inside of the die far enough?
Anything is possible? But what you have going on there definitely isn’t normal.
 

Ross1147

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I usually put the shell holder in, run it up then screw the die down until it touches the holder, then back off a full turn. That didn’t work so I kept backing it off until I got a good seating depth with the micro stem set at mid position. This lead to the 2.5 turns. I just ran a empty case in there, backed it off a full turn then tried to seat a 140 absolute Hunter in it with the micro stem backed all the way off and it seated the bullet all the way past the shank to the ogive. I don’t like using the micro stem bottomed out in either direction so I back it off a few turns. This did give me a few more threads so now I’m at 5, but the micro adjuster is on 6 instead of 8 now. Little better but still not like any other die I have?
 

Ross1147

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Just yesterday or the day before there was a thread where people talked about caming over the press when seating bullets. I’m a good inch from that. I’d be crushing shoulders if I tried!
 

can1010

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looks like the seating stem didn't seat into the sliding sleeve the right way. it has happened to mine before try removing the seating stem and see if the case will seat properly.
 

Jud96

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Hornady seating dies are made to fit multiple cartridges that have the same caliber. So they won’t work like other manufacturer’s dies. If you don’t setup a Hornady die like I said above, you’ll end up crimping the cases or buckling the shoulder if you’re too far down. I wouldn’t recommend camming over with any seating die.
 

Ross1147

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Ok, so after getting off work this evening I started playing around with it a little more. I took it apart, made sure the seater stem moved freely, made sure the piston piece (not sure what that’s called??) moved freely and there was nothing in the die. If I want to have the micro adjuster at say 50% (right in the middle) I only have 3 turns engaged in the press. If I run the micro stem out to 100% I have about 8 turns in the press. A happy medium is about 75% on the micro adjuster and 6 turns. Doesn’t seem right, but it works? All my absolutes are within .001” after seating so I guess I’ll use it. Never had a die that a case sticks over an inch out of.
 
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