ME:I am not sure what symptoms the fcd is supposed to "cure" I don't recall reading that anywhere in the literature. In fact modern reloading 2nd Ed by Richard lee states the fcd won't turn ammo made from Substandard parts or poorly assembled ammo into world record winning precision ammo just by running it through the die. It's a tool, and like other tools it can be used improperly causing detrimental results, I find it comical people want to blame the tool when they don't get the results they expected as a result of improper use.
You're summarizing statements made about the wrong tool.
Those statements are in reference to the rifle FCD. It's a totally different beast.
YOU:The handgun (carbide) FCD is designed to be used as a post-sizer 'cure' for bulges caused by over-crimping, or as a die that offers "unlimited crimp" and then 'irons out' the bulges. Nowhere, does Lee talk about it affecting accuracy, either way. However... as other posters have mentioned, the sizing ring in the carbide FCD is sized smaller than a minimum 'standard' chamber.
Lee discusses the rifle FCD somewhere around page 57 in Modern Reloading (2nd Ed). I believe there are 3-5 pages dedicated to the die. But... there isn't much on the handgun (carbide) FCD, other than discussing how 'cheap' it is. The two paragraphs directly stating that it is a band-aid for sub-standard reloading practices are on page 78.
I'm not arguing in favor, or against either die. I just wanted to make sure you understood that even Lee states that the handgun FCD was designed as a 'cure' for poor reloading practices, and that you were confusing statements made about completely different tools.
I understand completely. Again, nowhere i have read in any of the lee literature the factory crimp die is a "cure" for anything. i don't see it, and i have the book.
it talks about what it will do, and the sizing ring and ironing out over crimps i say yes i read that. nowhere does it say it's a cure. i don't see that anywhere. i looked.
i see it as an insurance policy rather than a snake oil (which soooo many people seem to do) and if i do f**k up a round (and who among us has not) the fcd may keep you happy. MAY. i agree, if you need the fcd to fix your mistakes you're doing it wrong. if you are using it to put a nice crimp on you die that you like, you're doing it right.
yes it does what it says it does, if you use it right.
if you have used it and like it i say: keep on keepin' on.
if you have used it and hate it i say: keep on keepin' on.
if you don't have one i say, spend <$25 and try it for yourself.
if you like it i say keep on keepin on.
if you can't make it work for you i say:
DON'T USE IT and let that be the end of it. cuz it works for lots of us