Looking at my first competition die set (which one)

born2kill

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Jun 7, 2013
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32
I'm looking at Forster competition micrometer seater, it looks to be the best prices for the best product. I was looking at redding but people seem to prefer the Forster. I was looking at possibly whidden but it seems to be fairly expensive. No doubt it's a great product but how much better compared to Forster. Last but not least would be the Wilson style dies. Totally different but heard amazing things. Just curious what's everyones thoughts. It would be for 260. Rem
 

matt_3479

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Jan 31, 2010
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Southern Ontario
well since no one else seems to be contributing to this. Unfortunately i have not tried either the wilson or the whidden dies. The whidden look really nice and have read great things on them from this site and a few others. The wilson are a cool idea and im debating on picking one up. The dies would be great for seating bullets!

Between the forster and the Redding i have only used the redding but played with a forster and i think i like the forster better and is the sole reason i will be most likely grabbing the forster.

To me it looks like the forster is a little larger making it a little easier to read and the price is cheaper (only hands on experience). From what i have read though is that the forster seems to be equally good with tolerances. Just reading online it seems like forster has pleased more of there customers where as redding i have read more complaints about. I dont think you could go wrong with any of those dies but ill be going forster most likely. Hope someone else can chime in with more knowledge.
 

Trickymissfit

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Jun 11, 2010
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greenwood, IN
avoided this as it will soon become a Ford verses Chevy match.

I started out with a set of C&H dies, and had my own share of problems. Yet looking back and thinking about them, 50% of these issues were operator error. I later got my hands on a pair of Pacific Durachrome dies. Hard to say how much better, or if they were anybetter. I was by then getting better at the game. Then my brother talked me into buying a couple sets of RCBS dies (30-06 and .222 Remington). Think they were better, but also was going about my business somewhat better. Fred Sinclair talked me into buying a set of 22-250 dies, and I knew I had moved up the ladder. These were the standard versions as nobody was doing the micrometer topped dies yet. I was under constant duress trying to get a repeatable headspace with a wild cat I was working on. Already tried two other die sets with the same issues in case forming. I saw a set of Forster dies at a gun show new in the box. Think I paid about twenty dollars for them. The world turned! Shoulders looked far better, and the cases fire formed right. Radius' at the shoulder and neck juncture finally looked right. I was finally on the right track. Then I called Fred and had him send me a pair of .223 and .222 dies with the micrometer tops. I had zero idea as to how strait my rounds were, but I was also in the learning curve about seating depth as well. Seemed like I called Fred twice a week (probably more than that) with some new piece of drama. Then I thought I had completely destroyed my 22-250 sizing die. Fred pulled my butt out of the fire as usual (while laughing I'm sure). I got talked into buy a Hornaday 270 mag and 30-06ndie set with their micrometer tops. I thought the rifle was junk or something (270 mag), and the 30-06 would size cases worth a ****. Got mad one day and called Fred. He said those dies would work, but I was done with them. He sent me two more Forster sets, and things got better. Then I got to doing some fairly long strait walled cases, and picked up two other sets here and there. Got a new set of Redding .450 dies for Christmas, and they are nice (may have loaded 200 rounds with them). Have two sets of .444 dies, and have to say I like the Lyman dies best (I actually use a Forster seater, but the Lyman sizer is better). Thru the years I've found nothing better than the Lyman dies for strait walled hand gun cases with cast bullets. They just seem to crimp better.

After a few years I built a .223 Rem. NM. Had a .246" neck and a very tight chamber. Simply bought a set of Wilson dies and a K&M arbor press. Then picked up a Redding body die. I was using a Forster .222 Rem die set.. I came into a home built set from Ferris Pindell in a trade. I was kind of leery about them as they were made of aluminum. Been using them for 20 years now without an issue. I now own six or eight sets of dies for Wilson, and a cigar box full of bushings.

With my setup in the press, I can always get .0015" TIR off a NECO gauge assuming I do my part. With the arbor press, I can usually see .0012" TIR or less. I can often get five rounds under .0008" in the .222 (I usually just load five cases at a time, but will bring twenty). I like this combo so well, that I may just build a Rem. 700 or single shot Savage with that same reamer (it was Ferris's reamer). It's the same reamer that reamed the dies.
gary
 

flashhole

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Joined
Nov 15, 2009
Messages
464
My epiphany came with my 25-06. I have an eclectic die set consisting of a Redding Body Die, a Forster Ultra Seat Die, a Lyman FL Sizer, a Lee Collet Neck Die and a Taper Crimp Die.

I have other Forster complete die sets and I prefer the standard seat die over the Ultra seat die but I like the Forster seat dies the best.
 

Oldtime Shooter13

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Mar 8, 2019
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69
Location
Maine
I have both and you are comparing apples and apples. Both Forester and Redding are very good dies. I might lean towards Redding myself!
 

cdherman

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Aug 9, 2008
Messages
336
Location
Kansas City
My Forster dies never left "rings" on my VLDL bullets. My first Redding did so, requiring a different seater. Not a large sample, but just saying. I like Forster in the micrometer seating die department.
 

cdherman

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Aug 9, 2008
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336
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Kansas City
Holy necromancer. Dead threads live again! I didn't see that the original posts started so long ago. Well, perhaps someone newer will benefit! The debate remains valid IMHO......
 
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