Sizing die problem

Wide Glide

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Joined
Mar 4, 2016
Messages
54
Of the ones with dings in the case neck probably not , I think I’ve already run all of those through the FL die after the issue with the neck die. I do have another box of 100 that I haven’t messed with yet but I don’t think they are dinged up at all if you were just wondering what the GWT brass looks like I could get you a picture of those.

The more I think about it the less I like the idea of buying a new press just for the lee die. It is definitely my favorite sizing dieBut I can’t justify the cost. Just for the ability to use that die I am looking at $200 for a new press plus $80 for the large series die set $20 for a new ultra mount plate.... yeah that price includes a nice new prayers but at this point I think I’ve probably got 20 different die sets that are all set up with the Lee quick change bushingsThat my two lee breech lock challenger presses use. Pretty sure I could get a good size or die that is compatible with my current price for half of that or less.

I will have to put some serious thought into that luckily I’ve got a few hundred pieces of brass and I don’t shoot this rifle all that much so I have a little time before I will be forced to make a decision

I wonder if that big boss II has a bigger opening than the breach lock challenger? It would be nice to not have to tilt a round and feed the bullet tip up into the die to slide the brass into the case holder during seating
 

Dr. Richard Gray

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 11, 2019
Messages
62
Location
74 Ropers Landing Road, Golconda, IL
Very mysterious problem you have here. Never seen, heard, or encountered such a problem, and I've been reloading for over 50 years. I have all RCBS equipment and dies. One thing that you might try that will let you feel where the contact is occurring is using a SUPER lube. Take an old sock or cloth and put some STP oil treatment on it. Take a cartridge and just wipe it with the cloth. You don't need much of this stuff. You will be amazed at how easily the cartridge slides into and out of the die. After decapping make sure you use a cleaning solvent to clean the cartridge. Anyway, you should be able to move the press arm slowly and perhaps detect where the contact is crimping the neck. I feel your pain on this problem because I also have several large calibers (338+) and the brass is terribly expensive. I assume that you have contacted Lyman about this problem. If it is a bad die I do know that RCBS would replace it free. Their service has been extraordinary to me over the past 50 years. My opinion is that something is loose or bending when the expander makes contact.
 

jdyoung

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Joined
Mar 1, 2020
Messages
235
Location
Ironman Country
Of the ones with dings in the case neck probably not , I think I’ve already run all of those through the FL die after the issue with the neck die. I do have another box of 100 that I haven’t messed with yet but I don’t think they are dinged up at all if you were just wondering what the GWT brass looks like I could get you a picture of those.

The more I think about it the less I like the idea of buying a new press just for the lee die. It is definitely my favorite sizing dieBut I can’t justify the cost. Just for the ability to use that die I am looking at $200 for a new press plus $80 for the large series die set $20 for a new ultra mount plate.... yeah that price includes a nice new prayers but at this point I think I’ve probably got 20 different die sets that are all set up with the Lee quick change bushingsThat my two lee breech lock challenger presses use. Pretty sure I could get a good size or die that is compatible with my current price for half of that or less.

I will have to put some serious thought into that luckily I’ve got a few hundred pieces of brass and I don’t shoot this rifle all that much so I have a little time before I will be forced to make a decision

I wonder if that big boss II has a bigger opening than the breach lock challenger? It would be nice to not have to tilt a round and feed the bullet tip up into the die to slide the brass into the case holder during seating
I was wondering if the necks of the new out of the package cases were pushed in farther that the abilities of the die to restore without a little help. I've had some new cases with necks that way. I just took a pair of needle nose pliers and coaxed them into a form that the die could handle successfully. ( any object with a smooth taper like a punch etc would have worked).
As to a new press, my press is an ancient Lyman Orange Crusher that I bought used in the early '90's. I never had any problem feeding any cartridges into it.
Only difficulty I ever had with it was the primer punch pin would snag, (bent a couple),from time to time on the inside of the flash hole when running the case up into the die. With some cases I had to do an assist with my left hand to thread the case correctly into the die. It bothered me enough that just for giggles, I laid a level, ( one of those line levels ) across the top of the ram ( no shell holder). I turned it in all directions. While the press was mounted on a new sturdy bench, the level on the ram indicated it was out of plumb about 3/32" low on the right side. I slipped a broken hack saw blade between the press base and the benchtop. That brought the ram into plumb and I haven't had that trouble except with a very few factory loaded fired rounds that haven't had the inside flash hole deburred.
I'm not sayin' this is the problem you are having, just that sometime there are little details like the case neck being dented too severe or the press not being plumb causing the case to take an irregular stance when entering the die.
Just don't go runnin' out and throwin' money at the problem till you have it figured.
 

Blackhawk

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 29, 2018
Messages
173
Location
Florida
I am trying to neck size some new GWT 338lm brass Because shipping them to the case mouths But when the brass is 1/3 of the way into the die it catches on something and Dents the mouth worse. When the brass goes through the die and comes back out the mouth is fixed and I can’t feel a change with my thumb nail but the color change in the brass makes it obvious. I have tried setting this diet multiple times to get this to stop but I’m starting to wonder if I just have a bum die. It is the neck die from Lyman and deluxe rifle three die said item number 7680250

Any idea whats going on?

View attachment 202816
Just a thought but perhaps if you anneal your brass before you Fl resize it may help.
To me it appears from your photos that the brass case mouths and necks may be a little on the hard side ,and may benefit from annealing
Just had another thought.
Judging from your post you are an accomplished hand loader.
How much play do you have if any between your presses ram and the frame itself.
Some cast single stage presses are prone to wearing , as well as alignment issues as they age. (more so on less expensive presses)
If you don't have any wiggle in your ram, their have been alignment issiues with the exact location of you shell holder in relationship to your ram as they are usually made from investment castings.
The big question is when your 7/8" x 14 TPI tap was inserted into the press body proper ,was it in correct alignment with the ram opening.?
More importantly was it in alignment with the bottom of your presses shell holder?
Assuming that your dies are in good condition you may also look at your shell holder.
These do get a lot of wear, are easily replaced and may be a contributing factor.
Finally if possible try to handload your brass on another press that is in good condition.
If you don't have another press call a friend that has a single stage press and have him/her FL resize a couple of brass hulls for you using your dies and see what happens. ( Of course you will be present when they resize your brass )

Alternately you can call the brass manufacturer and give them your lot and batch numbers telling them of your problems.
Perhaps they may tell you to return the brass and offer to exchange it.
At the very least they can tell you if they themselves have experienced any problems during production runs.
There are potentially more issues, but this is a good starting point.
OBTW what brand and how much case lubricant are you using.
If it is a spray on type you may want to try anther brand as from your photographs your hulls appear to vey dry.
Before you do any more FL resizing I would take you die apart and clean it thoroughly as I'm sure that you will find brass galled around the shoulder.
How old are your dies?
Are you using a bushing, or an expander ball ? (of the correct size)
I am certainly not trying to insult your intelligence just my thoughts on how to aid you involving this dilemma.
There are so many variables at play here that you must systematically eliminate every possible cause one by one.

This unfortunately will take some of your valuable time.
Annealing may solve your problems, as I think your main concern is with this lot of brass itself ,and not your press, but you must rule out all possibility's.
Hope this will point you in the right direction!
 
Last edited:

Wide Glide

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Joined
Mar 4, 2016
Messages
54
I was wondering if the necks of the new out of the package cases were pushed in farther that the abilities of the die to restore without a little help. I've had some new cases with necks that way. I just took a pair of needle nose pliers and coaxed them into a form that the die could handle successfully. ( any object with a smooth taper like a punch etc would have worked).
As to a new press, my press is an ancient Lyman Orange Crusher that I bought used in the early '90's. I never had any problem feeding any cartridges into it.
Only difficulty I ever had with it was the primer punch pin would snag, (bent a couple),from time to time on the inside of the flash hole when running the case up into the die. With some cases I had to do an assist with my left hand to thread the case correctly into the die. It bothered me enough that just for giggles, I laid a level, ( one of those line levels ) across the top of the ram ( no shell holder). I turned it in all directions. While the press was mounted on a new sturdy bench, the level on the ram indicated it was out of plumb about 3/32" low on the right side. I slipped a broken hack saw blade between the press base and the benchtop. That brought the ram into plumb and I haven't had that trouble except with a very few factory loaded fired rounds that haven't had the inside flash hole deburred.
I'm not sayin' this is the problem you are having, just that sometime there are little details like the case neck being dented too severe or the press not being plumb causing the case to take an irregular stance when entering the die.
Just don't go runnin' out and throwin' money at the problem till you have it figured.
no nothing terrible. Most would have only been noticed if looking for it. My buddies would have probably loaded as is. Never thought to check for plumb because ive never had an issue when using lee ultimate die sets with added redding body dies. Only started having problems when i tried setting up this lyman set. It may all just be user error because my first thought when opening the box was that they came with the worst most generic instructions ive ever seen. The little folded paper said it was for like 6 different die sets. Fl die works fine with a ton of lube inside but i dont like using much lube in the neck

Just a thought but perhaps if you anneal your brass before you Fl resize it may help.
To me it appears from your photos that the brass case mouths and necks may be a little on the hard side ,and may benefit from annealing
Just had another thought.
Judging from your post you are an accomplished hand loader.
How much play do you have if any between your presses ram and the frame itself.
Some cast single stage presses are prone to wearing , as well as alignment issues as they age. (more so on less expensive presses)
If you don't have any wiggle in your ram, their have been alignment issiues with the exact location of you shell holder in relationship to your ram as they are usually made from investment castings.
The big question is when your 7/8" x 14 TPI tap was inserted into the press body proper ,was it in correct alignment with the ram opening.?
More importantly was it in alignment with the bottom of your presses shall holder?
Assuming that your dies are in good condition you may also look at your shell holder.
Theses do get a lot of wear, are easily replaced and may be a contributing factor.
Finally if possible try to handload your brass on another press that is in good condition.
if you don't have another press call a friend that has a single stage press and have him/her FL resize a couple of brass hulls for you using your dies and see what happens. ( Of course you will be present when they resize your brass )

Alternately you can call the brass manufacturer and give them your lot and batch numbers telling them of your problems.
Perhaps they may tell you to return the brass and offer to exchange it.
At the very least they can tell you if they themselves have experienced any problems during production runs.
There are potentially more issues, but this is a good starting point.
OBTW what brand and how much case lubricant are you using.
If it is a spray on type you may want to try anther brand as from your photographs your hulls appear to vey dry
Before you do any more FL resizing I would take you die apart and clean it thoroughly as I'm sure that you will find brass galled around the shoulder.
How old are your dies?
Are you using a bushing, or an expander ball ? (of the correct size)
I am certainly not trying to insult your intelligence just my thoughts on how to aid you involving this dilemma.
There are so many variables at play here that you must systematically eliminate every possible cause one by one.

This unfortunately will take some of your valuable time.
Annealing may solve your problems, as I think your main concern is with this lot of brass itself ,and not your press, but you must rule out all possibility's.
Hope this will point you in the right direction!
The brass comes annealed from the factory and im one of those blowtorch and drill annealers so i never considered annealing again before firing.
I ran a couple pieces of lapua “NT” Brass after the gwt brass with the same results so i think the brass is ok

lube was one of my first guesses an i tried multiple
Hornady spray
Hornady unique wax
Rcbs that comes with their lube pad
Also homemade lanolin/iso heet

none made a difference in neck sizing but the 2 sprays were way better for fl sizing. Im guessing that was because it was easier to get into the necks.

dies and shell holder were bought a couple of years ago but just opened for the first time a few nights ago

press is a pair of lee breech lock challeners not to be confused with lee classic cast. Ive had the pair for around 10 years now and manny many thousand rounds loaded with them problem free. In the past 2 months alone ive loaded and shot about 400 rds of 300wm and 300 .308. And had entirely predictable great results. That is the main reason ive never seen the need to upgrade. I have lusted over new presses for years now But I have never been able to pull the trigger because the current ones have always seem to be more than enough and I hate change so I usually don’t try to fix what isn’t broke. I have had my eye on the Reading big boss II for a little while now honestly if I hadn’t just spent over $600 On brass in the past two weeks I’d Be having a hard time not buying one right now . If I don’t get called into work tomorrow I’ll try to get. Around to taking that die apart and taking pictures and seeing what I can find
 

Wide Glide

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Joined
Mar 4, 2016
Messages
54
I think I’m just going to give up on this die set. I got the next size or die to not crumple brass by backing it off so that it doesn’t size the whole neck. So then I went back to checking out the FL die and on closer inspection it is leaving a ring around the top part of the shoulder where it meets the main body of the case That is deep enough that my finger nail catches it but I can’t seem to get a picture of it. I have never Spent so much time settling with a die trying to get it set up to work right. And even the dyes that I did take a few more minutes than I wanted to trying to get them set up perfectly were exactly that, set up perfectly to do exactly what I wanted as to where after messing around with these dies for literally hours I still can’t get even a satisfactory result out of them and with the amount of powder that goes into one of these cases and cost to replace them I’m not willing to experiment with them anymore.

Now is the time when I need to decide if I want to upgrade my prayers so that I can use the large series lee collet neck die or look into a bushing die setup. I am open to suggestions for other dies but keep in mind I am not looking to spend hundreds of dollars on some extra super special elite new die. I’m not into fiddling around with the neck turning Or anything like that. I like simple things that work which is why I usually just buy the lee ultimate die set for each caliber that I shoot. For $100 I get the full lee set and a redding body die And can usually Load good enough ammo with that to keep me averaging around .5-.75with most rifles. When I start throwing hundred dollar bills around I’d rather it be For more brass powder bullets or maybe even An annealer LOL
Due to the cost of upgrading the press just to use the Lee die I’m really considering one of the full length sizer dies with a neck bushing But I have zero experience with anything of the sort and worry there may be downside to that sort of set up that I didn’t realize before buying.
 

DSheetz

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 22, 2015
Messages
743
Try talking with the die manufacturer and see if they will make it right for you by replacing them or fixing the ones you have . It may take some time but will be less expensive in the end if they will work with you on them .
 

freddiej

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 10, 2010
Messages
570
Location
Carson City, NV
Wide Glide, in my estimation your dies are most likely rejects. As DSheetz suggests, talk to the manufacturer and send them back, they might just replace them and your problems most likely will end with a new set of dies. I know I played hell with a set of incomplete Redding Dies, Redding told me to send the set back with a couple of sized brass, coincidentally it was also 338 Lapua dies. they called me and told me it was one of 12 sets that got in the wrong bin and were sent out before finishing machining and polishing. they finished them up and I have been so happy every since.
 

arch408

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 6, 2012
Messages
256
You may have to polish your expander, Pull your expander ball out and see if it still catches, if it doesn't she needs reshaping a bit
I'd rethink trying to polish the expander ball. The expander might be tungsten carbide. If it us, you might ruin it. Expensive to rep,ace.
 

ButterBean

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Joined
Feb 5, 2012
Messages
1,427
Location
West Terre Haute Indiana
I'd rethink trying to polish the expander ball. The expander might be tungsten carbide. If it us, you might ruin it. Expensive to rep,ace.
Bud That makes no sense whatsoever, regardless of what your polishing your removing material and there is no putting it back, as far as Tungsten It won't ruin it, It polishes just fine
 

Blackhawk

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 29, 2018
Messages
173
Location
Florida
no nothing terrible. Most would have only been noticed if looking for it. My buddies would have probably loaded as is. Never thought to check for plumb because ive never had an issue when using lee ultimate die sets with added redding body dies. Only started having problems when i tried setting up this lyman set. It may all just be user error because my first thought when opening the box was that they came with the worst most generic instructions ive ever seen. The little folded paper said it was for like 6 different die sets. Fl die works fine with a ton of lube inside but i dont like using much lube in the neck


The brass comes annealed from the factory and im one of those blowtorch and drill annealers so i never considered annealing again before firing.
I ran a couple pieces of lapua “NT” Brass after the gwt brass with the same results so i think the brass is ok

lube was one of my first guesses an i tried multiple
Hornady spray
Hornady unique wax
Rcbs that comes with their lube pad
Also homemade lanolin/iso heet

none made a difference in neck sizing but the 2 sprays were way better for fl sizing. Im guessing that was because it was easier to get into the necks.

dies and shell holder were bought a couple of years ago but just opened for the first time a few nights ago

press is a pair of lee breech lock challeners not to be confused with lee classic cast. Ive had the pair for around 10 years now and manny many thousand rounds loaded with them problem free. In the past 2 months alone ive loaded and shot about 400 rds of 300wm and 300 .308. And had entirely predictable great results. That is the main reason ive never seen the need to upgrade. I have lusted over new presses for years now But I have never been able to pull the trigger because the current ones have always seem to be more than enough and I hate change so I usually don’t try to fix what isn’t broke. I have had my eye on the Reading big boss II for a little while now honestly if I hadn’t just spent over $600 On brass in the past two weeks I’d Be having a hard time not buying one right now . If I don’t get called into work tomorrow I’ll try to get. Around to taking that die apart and taking pictures and seeing what I can find
More food for thought
From your other posts you made reference to your case necks being too small , or bent and you had to open them up with pliers.
This is my solution , as I must open the case mouths slightly after I Fl resize virgin brass in order have it fit over my neck turning arbor.

Bare with me here !
I use the Sinclair Expanding Arbor Die. ( PN #7409-008-843WS )
You order the die body as a separate entity and the correct arbor separately. (look on Brownell's Website for pertinent information )
The arbors come in either .+001" oversize, or -.001" undersize in a specific caliber which in your case you will want the +.001" oversize (30 caliber will be Sinclair PN #749-001-183 ) and simply drop in then screw on the top of the die.
This expander mandrel die will also remove dents from damaged case mouths that were either dropped or range brass.

Rather than open your case mouths manually with plyers, here is an alternative for you.
Additionally from what you have stated, it looks as if your FL Resize die after all maybe the culprit.

A) I would call Lyman and advise them of the way the die is scouring your case necks and is ruining your cases.
B) Order another brand of FL resize die ( such as Lee, Hornady, RCBs, or Redding etc. )
If you choose the bushing die ( which indecently Lee dose not make ) be certain that you use micrometers, or a good digital dial caliper and measure the diameter of case neck on a completed handloaded round and them subtract in most cases -..003 " = -.004" for correct neck tension and brass spring back. from that diameter and this will give you the approximate neck bushing that you need.
I say approximate because you may have to order another + - .001" neck bushing to get the correct neck tension.
I use the Fl bushing dies myself and in order to fine tune I need to order a minimum of 2 bushings.
Usually the rule of thumb measurement mentioned above works however most of the time -.001" smaller may be required.
This can add up at generally $19.00 a bushing plus the FL die body itself. ( prices vary depending on manufacturer) ,as apposed to a Fl expander die ,such as the Lee brand which are generally a lot cheaper as stated above you want to be as cost effective as possible)
Again I hope this helps !
 
Last edited:

Wide Glide

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Joined
Mar 4, 2016
Messages
54
]
More food for thought
From your other posts you made reference to your case necks being too small , or bent and you had to open them up with pliers.
This is my solution , as I must open the case mouths slightly after I Fl resize virgin brass in order have it fit over my neck turning arbor.

Bare with me here !
I use the Sinclair Expanding Arbor Die. ( PN #7409-008-843WS )
You order the die body as a separate entity and the correct arbor separately. (look on Brownell's Website for pertinent information )
The arbors come in either .+001" oversize, or -.001" undersize in a specific caliber which in your case you will want the +.001" oversize (30 caliber will be Sinclair PN #749-001-183 ) and simply area drop in screw in item.
This expander mandrel die will also remove dents from damaged case mouths that were either dropped or range brass.

Rather than open your case mouths manually with plyers, here is an alternative for you.
Additionally from what you have stated, it looks as if your FL Resize die after all maybe the culprit.

A) I would call Lyman and advise them of the way the die is scouring your case necks and is ruining your cases.
B) Order anther brand of FL resize die ( such as Lee )
If you choose the bushing die ( which indecently Lee dose not make ) be certain that you use micrometers, or a good digital dial caliper and measure the diameter of case neck on a completed handloaded round and them subtract in most cases -..003 " = -.004" for correct neck tension and brass spring back. from that diameter and this will give you the approximate neck bushing that you need.
I say approximate because you may have to order another + - .001" neck bushing to get the correct neck tension.
I use the Fl bushing dies myself and in order to fine tune I need to order a minimum of 2 bushings.
Usually the rule of thumb measurement mentioned above, and most of the time -.001" smaller.
This can add up at generally $19.00 a bushing plus the FL die body itself. ( prices vary depending on manufacturer) ,as apposed to a Fl expander die ,such as the Lee brand which are generally a lot cheaper)
Again I hope this helps !
you were thinking of somebody else I’ve never use pliers to open a case mouth
 

jdyoung

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Joined
Mar 1, 2020
Messages
235
Location
Ironman Country
]

you were thinking of somebody else I’ve never use pliers to open a case mouth
Yeah , that was me in post #31, ( I guess Wide Glide and I look alike) I just slid the closed needle nose pliers into the mouth of the case neck and gently turned to expand the neck mouth to a point where the regular expander of a die could handle it. ( could o used any punch that was tapered, got lazy and the needle nose were in arms reach and the Sinclair gear wasn't)
They were new cases that looked like they were dropped during packaging and maybe stepped on . But , that unglamorous trick worked
 
Last edited:

Blackhawk

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 29, 2018
Messages
173
Location
Florida
]

you were thinking of somebody else I’ve never use pliers to open a case mouth
shol
Yeah , that was me in post #31, ( I guess Wide Glide and I look alike) I just slid the closed needle nose pliers into the mouth of the case neck and gently turned to expand the neck mouth to a point where the regular expander of a die could handle it. ( could o used any punch that was tapered, got lazy and the needle nose were in arms reach and the Sinclair gear wasn't)
They were new cases that looked like they were dropped during packaging and maybe stepped on . But , that unglamorous trick worked
I Like Forks!
 
Top