Why I Crimp

ButterBean

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Who was it that dropped their rifle on the butt pad and found a round with the bullet farther back in the case?
And I apologize as I'm in a couple of other threads about crimping, that was the second incident I had, the first was on an Elk hunt, I shipped gun and ammo via the post office from Virginia to Washington State and saw I had problems as soon I got there
 

Laguna Freak

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All of the loads I want to try your crimping method on are already loaded so I think maybe I’ll just very light crimp a couple of each and shoot/chrono them watching for pressure signs! Your thoughts?

A slight roll crimp with seating die is helpful too and takes little time.

FWIW; I use between 11 and 22 degrees rotation of the die depending on the bullet and case. Eg; > 11 degrees with Accubonds in my 30-06 causes case deformation. 22 degrees with Scirocco II in my 300 WSM does not.
 

ButterBean

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I am prepping to reload for my 44mag revolver and am curious if you, or anyone else, thinks the Lee FCD is a better crimp than a standard roll-crimp. If so, what would you say are the advantages offered by the Lee FCD for a revolver load?
To me it is as it's tune-able, I'm sure the roll crimp is fine in that instance though and it would be one less step as well
 

Laguna Freak

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To me it is as it's tune-able, I'm sure the roll crimp is fine in that instance though and it would be one less step as well

Tune-able to what extent? Please enlighten me.

I roll crimp rifle loads after seating. So that is 1 more step because I’m not good enough to get all my cases exactly the same length and bullets aren’t either.

I measure roll crimp by degrees of rotation of the die. Generally 11 to 22 degrees crimp depending on bullet : case. Eg; 30-06 with 150 Accubond gets 11 degrees because more will buckle the case neck. 300 WSM with 180 Scirocco II can take 22 degrees without buckling the case neck.
 

ButterBean

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Tune-able to what extent? Please enlighten me.

I roll crimp rifle loads after seating. So that is 1 more step because I’m not good enough to get all my cases exactly the same length and bullets aren’t either.

I measure roll crimp by degrees of rotation of the die. Generally 11 to 22 degrees crimp depending on bullet : case. Eg; 30-06 with 150 Accubond gets 11 degrees because more will buckle the case neck. 300 WSM with 180 Scirocco II can take 22 degrees without buckling the case neck.
This is my method broken down by a Shinbone and he did a heck of a job explaining it, it is Instrumental with all bullets but the Hammers really respond to it, I set my press to cam over so I put the same amount of crimp at all times


IMG_3128-X2.jpg


IMG_3126-XL.jpg
 
Last edited:

vernw

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Ok guys, need a little Lee FCD input/feedback. It’s my first venture into using one in 40+ years of reloading (both for competition and hunting, all the thousands of rounds I’ve fired are in prep or practice for one of these or the other). But I digress...

I’m working up a hunting load for a 338 Lapua using new unfired Lapua brass, H-1000, and the Barnes 265 gr. LRX-BT. all brass has been trimmed with the WFT, flash wholes tooled, and primer pockets uniformed. i know none of this is usually required for Lapua brass, but I guess I’m just sort of anal LOL. All brass was sized using a Redding body die and the neck sized using the Redding neck die with a 0.002 neck tension bushing. Then run over a Sinclair 0.002” mandrel. Surprisingly enough, the mandrel did feel like it was opening the necks up. Didn’t expect that, but moving on....

Started out with Fed 215GM primers but was getting one round out of every 4 or 5 that would fly out ofthe group and the chrono would show a big drop in velocity for that round. So my suspicion is that I’m not getting consistent ignition. Hence i decided to give the FCD a try, thinking maybe a little light crimp may enhance the burning process. I also shifted over to using CCI primers. I know shouldn’t be changing two things at once but I’m working on a tight time frame. I leave on a hunt in 8 days and would like to take the 338 if possible.

So, anyway, set up the die initially one half turn down from when it contacted a loaded round. Got what looks to be a pretty good crimp. I was surprised to see that you can actually see the crimp. There’s a pronounced line visible on the brass just barely down from the case mouth:
8B5F3F0A-87BC-48B4-B2C7-6E1447042D70.jpeg

Thinking this might be too much, I Backed the die out approx. one eighth of a turn or slightly more and still get a crimp, but not nearly as pronounced a mark on the case:
EB75F8ED-4D15-4CA8-8538-C3AB32384BDB.jpeg

Since my intention was to try a light crimp to see if it mattered or not, I’m leaning towards using the lighter setting. So, here’s my questions:

1. Do you normally see a line like this on your brass with the FCD? i was expecting more of a taper crimp that wasn’t visible like this.

2. Do you think the lighter crimp is enough to make any difference? I’m an hour away from the range and can’t reload once there so i need to take a best guess approach.

3. Is the heavier crimp too much? The current load is right near the top listing in the Barnes manual. Concerned about pressure increases as well.

ANY serious suggestion, impressions, etc. are welcomed. I’ve currently got 5 rounds ready to go with the heaviest crimp, 10 with the lighter crimp, and 38 with no crimp at all. Range trip planned for tomorrow. Any ideas or help from those experienced with these dies?
 

jdyoung

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To vernw:
Try them both , they are already loaded.
When your trip is over, and you still want to use a LFC , give this a try.
It is an ft lb "click" torque wrench with an attachment to add it to your press so you can vary the amount of crimp in a very consistent manner.
 
Last edited:

Blackhawk

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I know this is going to start the age old battle of crimp or not to crimp and that's not what I'm trying to do so I'm stating "This is why I crimp", This is my opinion so take it for that, I'm just sharing my personal experience and what works for me I am not a competition shooter nor do I claim to be Just a LRH . This is the second time this has happened to me in the past thirty years, the first was an Elk hunt in Oregon where I mailed my rifle and ammo out and then spent a week Horseback and the second time was yesterday, I will tell you that I do not abuse my guns, with that being said I use them for what they are intended for and I do not own anything that hasn't been "Well Used" No safe queens here, Now why I crimp, My Coyote Rig is a Rem 700 in 270 with 90 gr Sierra's, I loaded some rounds last month and got sidetracked and didn't crimp ( I use the Lee FCD on everything I load ) 10 rounds, I just let it go cause I wanted to get in the woods,these were loaded into a 5 rd Magazine two weeks ago, i hunt every evening an twice a day on the weekends 2 to 3 sets a trip and last Saturday my gun slipped off of my shoulder and landed on the Butt stock in a field and didn't hurt anything, fast forward to last night, I shot a ground hog ejected and chambered a new round and while unloading the weapon i saw the bullet in the second round in the mag was gone, upon examination I found the bullet had fell back in to the case, as i said this is the second time this has happened to me and why " I crimp" As for a side note this was 3X fired brass annealed, trimmed and FL resized every loading with a measured .0023 neck tension
Shooting magnum cartridges such as the .300 Win mag & .338 Win mag I've made it a point to crimp slightly without any undue damage to the copper jacket of the bullet. How do I know that I have not overly crimped is that I've pulled bullets out to determine this.
Making certain that I have the correct neck tension as well as the determined C.O.A.L. I also use the Lee FCD to finish my hand loaded cartridges with a slight crimp to the shell case neck and bullet.
Next, I check for concentricity and runout and adjust as need.
What I'm saying is "YES" I for one approve of crimping bullets in place.
As Butterbean so duly has noted recoil shock can and has dislodged uncrimped bullets from their brass shell cases.

So it is best especially with hunting ammunition to crimp your bullets to prevent this from happening
This is especially true in autoloaders where ammunition that is not within the confines of the C.O.A.L. will play havoc creating jams or simply not feeding at all.
 

ButterBean

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Ok guys, need a little Lee FCD input/feedback. It’s my first venture into using one in 40+ years of reloading (both for competition and hunting, all the thousands of rounds I’ve fired are in prep or practice for one of these or the other). But I digress...

I’m working up a hunting load for a 338 Lapua using new unfired Lapua brass, H-1000, and the Barnes 265 gr. LRX-BT. all brass has been trimmed with the WFT, flash wholes tooled, and primer pockets uniformed. i know none of this is usually required for Lapua brass, but I guess I’m just sort of anal LOL. All brass was sized using a Redding body die and the neck sized using the Redding neck die with a 0.002 neck tension bushing. Then run over a Sinclair 0.002” mandrel. Surprisingly enough, the mandrel did feel like it was opening the necks up. Didn’t expect that, but moving on....

Started out with Fed 215GM primers but was getting one round out of every 4 or 5 that would fly out ofthe group and the chrono would show a big drop in velocity for that round. So my suspicion is that I’m not getting consistent ignition. Hence i decided to give the FCD a try, thinking maybe a little light crimp may enhance the burning process. I also shifted over to using CCI primers. I know shouldn’t be changing two things at once but I’m working on a tight time frame. I leave on a hunt in 8 days and would like to take the 338 if possible.

So, anyway, set up the die initially one half turn down from when it contacted a loaded round. Got what looks to be a pretty good crimp. I was surprised to see that you can actually see the crimp. There’s a pronounced line visible on the brass just barely down from the case mouth:
View attachment 222221
Thinking this might be too much, I Backed the die out approx. one eighth of a turn or slightly more and still get a crimp, but not nearly as pronounced a mark on the case:
View attachment 222222
Since my intention was to try a light crimp to see if it mattered or not, I’m leaning towards using the lighter setting. So, here’s my questions:

1. Do you normally see a line like this on your brass with the FCD? i was expecting more of a taper crimp that wasn’t visible like this.

2. Do you think the lighter crimp is enough to make any difference? I’m an hour away from the range and can’t reload once there so i need to take a best guess approach.

3. Is the heavier crimp too much? The current load is right near the top listing in the Barnes manual. Concerned about pressure increases as well.

ANY serious suggestion, impressions, etc. are welcomed. I’ve currently got 5 rounds ready to go with the heaviest crimp, 10 with the lighter crimp, and 38 with no crimp at all. Range trip planned for tomorrow. Any ideas or help from those experienced with these dies?
Your good to go Bud and yes the line is supposed to be there, I’m gonna lean towards the lighter crimp but the half turn won’t hurt anything, let me know what happens please
 

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