Neck Bushing and Body Dies or FL Bushing Die???

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by MontanaRifleman, Jul 12, 2009.

  1. MontanaRifleman

    MontanaRifleman Well-Known Member

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    Being new to bushing die sizing I have a few questions....

    First, which do you think is better and what are the advantages and disadvantages of both.... neck bushing sizing and body die or FL bushing die?

    I have the neck and body die for my 300 RUM and right now, my aim is to neck size only until the body gets a little too sticky to chamber well, then use the body die to partially size the body just enough so the case chambers well.

    I want to get another set of dies for a 25-06 and I'm wondering if I should just go with the FL die and set it up to partially size the case? This would keep things simple with one less die and one less operation.

    Next, I plan to leave a doughnut at the base of the neck to align the neck concentrically with the neck chamber. Is this necessary if I am sizing the body to barely fit the chamber? Advatages and disadvantages?

    Thanks,

    -MR
     
  2. larrywillis

    larrywillis Well-Known Member

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    MR .........

    I recommend using bushing type dies, because neck thickness varies quite a bit. If you switch to a different brand (or lot) of brass, you'll be able to avoid using the expander button, and you'll have complete control of neck tension.

    I also recommend always resizing with a FL die. Most benchrest shooters now use FL dies. In most situations, flawless chambering is not an option. The best method of resizing should include measuring your chamber clearance - if you want to get all of the advantages of FL resizing. Otherwise, you may be shortening the life of your brass, and (with some belted calibers) you could be causing headspace separations.

    Visit my website WWW.LARRYWILLIS.COM to see the quickest and easiest way to measure the clearance that YOUR handloads will have in YOUR particular chamber.

    - Innovative
     
  3. Michael Eichele

    Michael Eichele Well-Known Member

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    For me it depends on how tight my chamber is cut. If it is cut to very tight tolerences I tend to just FL it every time as I am only moving .001-.002" of brass. So in this case, I could use either a body die and bushing neck die or a FL bushing die to save time but I still prefer the 2 different dies for more options. If all I had was a FL/bushing die, I would be stuck always FL sizing.

    When I have a slightly larger chamber, I tend to just neck size only untill they start to get a bit "tight" in the chamber, then I FL size them.

    The only real advantage I see to using a FL/bushing die versus a body die and seperate neck die is you have one less step and save more time. So for your new 25-06, I would ask you how tight the chamber demensions are before deciding on which route to go.

    As far as leaving a donut on the neck, I am not sure that is the answer. If you leave that much unsized, you wont be able to "bump" the shoulder which isnt always needed but at some point will be.

    These are just my thoughts and humble opinions from dealing with my particular brass and chambers. Others may have a different approach.
     
  4. AJ Peacock

    AJ Peacock Well-Known Member

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    Larry,

    Sent you a PM

    AJ
     
  5. MontanaRifleman

    MontanaRifleman Well-Known Member

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    Larry,

    Thanks for your input. I agree on the advantages of bushing dies.

    That's a great looking devise and I will probably put it on my wish list next to.....

    LRF
    Scope for my 25-06 (I'll swap ouit the NF on my 300 in the interim)
    Sinclair runnout gauge
    CED m2 Chrony
    Field weather station
    LR field calc and software

    Dont most BR guys use custom FL dies that are fit to their chambers? That would definitely be my prefered choice and I may do that eventually. But my cases are not belted and once the brass is fire formed after a few firings, I would only be very slightly resizing the body with either a body die or FL die to simulate the beneifts of a custom die. I think this would be better than a total FL size, especially if the chamber is relatively large compared to a sized case? Am i wrong?

    -MR
     
  6. MontanaRifleman

    MontanaRifleman Well-Known Member

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    Michael,

    Good points. On the doughnut and bumping the shoulder... maybe I'm wrong but from what I think I have heard and read you can do both. I believe you can adjust the shoulder bump by how deep you seat the die into the press - and - leave a doughnut by leaving a little room fro the bushing to slide up. maybe I'm wrong?

    -MR
     
  7. dwm

    dwm Well-Known Member

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    Here's how I set mine up.

    1. Use the Stoney Point Head and Shoulders headspace guage, measure headspace of several fired cases.

    2. Set the Redding Type S full length bushing die to partially size cases and set shoulder back 0.001".

    3. Test sized cases in chamber to make sure they have been sized enough so there is just a small amount of resistance when bolt is closed. 0.001" may not be enough if running high pressures and blowing the brass out or if brass is really hard and springy. Adjust accordingly making sure sized cases fit in chamber with just a small amount of resistance being felt when bolt is closed.

    4. The partially sized neck "doughnut" is a completely independent setting on the type S bushing dies. I screw the neck bushing stop down until it bottoms out on the bushing and then back it off something like 1/2 turn. Size a case and inspect how much of the neck has been sized. Then adjust up or down until about 3/4 of the neck is bring sized. I don't think this dimension needs to be precisely controlled, just leave enough doughnut to center round in chamber neck area. On factory chambers this can be a fairly large diameter doughnut compared to the sized part of the neck.

    I have the body die / neck die set for a couple of cartridges and the full length die set for some. If you set the full length die up as described above and only partially full length size each time you will minimize how much you work the brass and still maintain a consistent headspace. The extra step required for the body seems like a waste of time to me now ...

    I have to agree with Michael about chambers that are cut a bit large, but if you set the full length die up as described above and only bump the shoulder back enough to obtain optimum headspace and then leave a small doughnut on the neck, the case will be held in the center of the chamber as close as possible thereby providing good alignment when the bullet is released.

    My thoughts and rationale on the subject anyway ...
     
  8. larrywillis

    larrywillis Well-Known Member

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    MR .........

    Custom benchrest dies are very expensive, and you'll get pretty near the same result by using a bushing type FL die (controlling neck tension) and using an accurate method of measuring your chamber clearance (at the shoulder).

    Unless you're shooting a $5,000. benchrest rifle in formal competition, setting the height of your FL die "accurately" is usually the best way to go.

    - Innovative
     
  9. MontanaRifleman

    MontanaRifleman Well-Known Member

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    Thanks dwm. This is basically what I thought. Unless someone else has a good reason to go with the tow dies vs one, I'll go with the FL bushing this next time around.

    Anyone want to buy a 300 RUM Redding bushing neck die and body die? :)
     
  10. MontanaRifleman

    MontanaRifleman Well-Known Member

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    Good points Larry. Would love to get one of those head space gauges.

    -MR
     
  11. BIG MICK

    BIG MICK Active Member

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    I would totally recomend larrys digital headspace guage i bought one and their very easy to use and very accurate, worth every cent.