Small Base Die - Worth the Money?

Muddyboots

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OK, my 300WSM could use more resizing to chamber properly or I could just back off loads ;) since that is not happening my question is will a small base die set reset the brass dimension at web area better than a body die or will it REALLY help salvage brass? They are pricey so this is a decision maker process. Appreciate the response on the small base die question.
Thx as always to the LRH brain trust!
 

GLTaylor

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You must be really running high pressure loads if a normal FL die won't resize for easy chambering. How long are primer pockets lasting?
 

can1010

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this is the same problem the 6.5 PRC has. you can only size the brass back to the original size no matter how small the die is.
Hornady 6.5 prc .529 -.530 and will not size any smaller
ADG 6.5 prc .5305 - .531 and after 2-3 warm loads will only size to .5315 - .532 and you get bolt click and sticky extraction. the prc chamber is .533
you need to have a fatter chamber in the base. I have tried small base dies with no success. only option is lighter loads or custom reamer
I went back to the Hornady brass because it was smaller and got 15 reloads without th
problem that I was having with the ADG/Gunwerks at 5-6 reloads
my opinion after dealing with this is you need .004 or more in the base for brass clearance
 

Muddyboots

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Loads are at max BOOK so just trying to extend brass life a little more. Primer pockets still "ok" enough not hard snug but snug enough where it still requires some pressure to seat. This is for brass with 8+ loads on them and just hate to throw away brass that may be shootable a few more loads. The 300WSM is a PITA high pressure round just like the 6.5PRC is same for brass life. The Redding body die does seem to help extend life but wanting to get more life if I can. No point owning a 300WSM if has Hp if you don't use it to the fullest. I've got nice cushy calibers to shoot otherwise.
 

can1010

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measure fired brass at the web before and after sizing if you don't have .004 difference you will have problems with high pressure loads, and you wont be able to size it any smaller than the dia. right above the extractor groove no matter how small you get a small base die. I like my PRC just have to live with its limitations
 

Muddyboots

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Yeah, spoke to Redding and a small base die will size an additional 0.003 which may not be enough anyway. Agree live with limitations with performance. Thx!
 

oldfortyfiveauto

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I had to grind some off my shell holder so I could get my 25WSSM's back where they would chamber. The WSSM's and I assume WSM brass is a little thicker that normal brass on say a 30-06. Also have to anneal every time.
 

25WSM

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Some guys at the 1000 yard matches have custom dies for their 300wsms that size more at the base. I don't know who they get them from. Some of the guys run there setback more on sticky brass. I've not had issues with the 300wsm. I run 210s at 2875 in mine. Most people are running in the 2850 fps. I'm shooting that soft Norma brass too. Basically live with the click or back off on them or get a custom die. I personally would get the die made on any rifle that needs it.
Shep
 

AZShooter

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I first encountered this issue with the 300 Rum. Later same thing with the 338 RCM and 300 WSM.

I solved the issue by buying an extra RCBS FL die and removing a portion of the top and bottom of the die. It was done on a lathe with a carbide tool bit. Once the tool bit goes through the case hardened exterior it machines easily. I made my own custom small base die that has quite a bit of adjustment and only alters the diameter of the base. No more bolt lift "snick" or closure issues.
 

25WSM

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Az how much did you need to cut off the bottom? A 300wsm only has . 017 from base to shoulder difference. To get . 005 more sizing you need to cut nearly 1/3 of the bottom off. And if that becomes the new bottom what happens at the top when it comes down 1/3rd more. Would that top squeeze too much on the top 1/3 of your brass. I'm not talking about shoulder bump because I know you cut the top off the die. I would think once you got the bottom to the diameter you need you would have to open up the diameter at the top. Just trying to figure this out. I have about 3 sizing dies in 300wsm. I think I can spare one to try this out.
Shep
 

AZShooter

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It was over ten years ago. I just went out and measured what the 338 RCM length is now. 1.850"
I cut off at least 1/2" from bottom. I figured I could slowly adjust it down till it sized the bottom enough. I had stiff bolt closure and when the die was properly adjusted the bolt closed easily.

I would say set it up and try it. Fire some small base sized rounds and see how the bolt lifts. Adjust as necessary. You can paint some layout fluid on case and see where it is reducing the diameter. All I know is that it works.
 

25WSM

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So your saying it doesn't size the top portion of your brass too much? I just can't see how it wouldn't unless you take some out of the die body. If I cut off the top at the shoulder junction or a little below that then that diameter is going to come down 1/2 inch further also. So it is really sizing the whole case more. Maybe I'm just not thinking about it right.
Shep
 

can1010

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Feb 27, 2012
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you can buy a PTG die blank and have it honed out to what ever dia. you want just go deeper than the length of your case and it will never touch the upper half of the body or the shoulder.
example
.546 for RUM
.5275 for PRC
I have used this on the RUM case and going to try on the PRC
 

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