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Old April 18, 2009, 08:58 PM   #1
TACKLEMAN24
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Problems with RCBS 30-06 Dies

I had an old used set of 30-06 dies that I had been using and worked ok in my M1 Garand. I however found that they ended up being out of tolerence due to the dies being very worn. I went and bought a new set of dies, RCBS Short Base Dies, I have been unable to use them for fear of causing damage to my equipment. I then went out and bought another set of RCBS Full Length Dies and have had the same problem. When I attemp to use the 1st die to expand and de-cap the brass the brass gets stuck in the die. I have taken the decaping unit out of the die and the expander ball part of that mechanism goes right through the case mouths without force, it does not fall right through but I can put it through by hand without any force. Now when I go to put the die in the press without the decapping unit in place and run the fired brass up into the die with the press I can not even get it to go all the way without putting extreme force on the lever. I then play H*L* getting the brass to come back out of the die. I can believe that one set of dies is possibly defective in the die being machined to an in-correct size. On the other hand I can not believe that 2 different die sets, 1 FL and 1 Short Base purchased from 2 different stores being both defective. I am currious if anyone has had a similar problem before either with the dies themselves or with reloading M1 Garand 30-06 Brass. Thanks in advance for your input.

Eric
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Old April 18, 2009, 09:05 PM   #2
Bart B.
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Do this to find out what's happening just with the die.

1. Strip the decapping rod and it's expander ball out of the die.

2. With the shell holder empty, run the ram all the way to the top, then screw the die in until it touches the shell holder, then lock the die in place

3. Take a cleaned fired case, lube it, then put it in the shell holder and run it up into the die. Pull the sized case back out.

===============

If this works fine, your problem is somewhere in the decapping rod or expander ball.

Please post your test results.
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Old April 18, 2009, 09:44 PM   #3
TACKLEMAN24
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I did that, it is not the decaping rod. I cant barely with all my might force it up all the way into the die and when I do that it is harder than to he** to get it back out of the die. I am wondering if it is because the my M1 Garand has a slightly larger chamber and the cases when fired are expanding to a larger than normal diameter. I had been using an extremely old garage sale set of dies that were so worn that it out of tolerance. Also, so I can narrow the list of possible causes for this problem can anyone measure the diameter of a case mouth on a 30-06 round fired from a bolt action or newer (not shot alot) semi-auto 30-06 rifle to see if the chamber on my rifle is causing the rounds to expand to a larger diameter.
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Old April 18, 2009, 10:12 PM   #4
HiBC
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In my experience,RCBS is quite reliable in the quality department.It would seem very unlikely that one person could buy two sets of defective dies.A remote possibility could be the dealer did some cannibalizing of the diesets to help a customer who wiped out his spindle,and did not get the re-assembly right.Have you a mic or calipers? What does the expander measure?

I suppose you could have an oversize chamber,but I think you would see a noticeable step in the case,where it swelled,just in front of the case head,near the extractor groove.And,still,I have reformed brass to wildcat cartridges and haven't needed the effort you describe.

Are you getting the cases clean before you reload?

Please describe how you lube them.I suspect you have a lube issue.I find the RCBS and Dillon spray case lubes work well for me,but you must let them sit a while for the volatile carrier to evaporate.

What sort of press do you have? Some of the very small ones do not have great leverage.

It is a good idea to brush out the necks before you lube.Usually,the spray lube gets just enough lube inside the neck for the expander ball.

To verify how the expander works,it should pass freely through the neck on the way in.The sizer die will size the neck to be undersize intentionally.On the way back out,the expander ball sizes the ID of the neck upto the desired dimension.
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Old April 18, 2009, 10:45 PM   #5
TACKLEMAN24
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I have checked and the expander ball on the decaping rods (both of them) and they clearly fit through the case necks by hand. As for the case lube, I have a RCBS case lube kit with the RCBS case lube pad and RCBS case lube alond with Hornady One Shot case lube. I have even tried spraying the lube directly one the cases. As for the press itself, it is a large one, not small and is a Hornady Classic Press. I have taken the decaping rod completely out of the dies and tried to run the case through the die and it is extremely difficult to run the cases through the die. As for the cases being clean, I always clean my cases twice, once before I do anything and once again after I decap the cases. When I clean the cases the 1st time they are in the tumbler for about 2 to 2 1/2 hours and the 2nd time I run the tumbler for about an hour or so. Again, I used that old set for approximately 500 rounds before I found out exactly how worn out they were. I tried using some of my reloads in a friends bolt action and they would not chamber yet they chambered in my Garand. I am thinking that there is actually something wrong with the dies. Also, so people know the brass is various military headstamps but mostly Lake City and HXP Greek military ammo surplus. I have not tried this with any comercial brass yet but not sure if it makes a difference. Also, I have checked the tiny hole that lets air escape. Again, considering the decaping rod is removed so it is not possible for air to become trapped and cause back pressure.
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Old April 18, 2009, 10:49 PM   #6
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Also, I agree about RCBS products being extremely reliable. I have dies for about 10 different calibers and all but 2 are RCBS. I have 1 set of LEE dies for 7.62 X 54R and 1 set of Hornady Dies for 380ACP and the only reason I have those die sets is because RCBS dies were not available for those calibers when I was purchasing my equipment. I have a feeling that I might actually have to send both of those die sets back to the factory which lmost never happens.
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Old April 19, 2009, 04:20 AM   #7
draggon
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Did you clean the dies before you used them. New dies usually have a thick (not necessarily visible to the eye though) layer of preservative on them that will definitely interfere with sizing. I seem to recall that the instructions actually say that.
Clean the dies, the manufacturers recommend common bore solvents, lube your cases with Imperial wax or anhydrous lanolin, just by rolling the cases over your hands which you have spread a little lube on. As a side effect your hands will become nice and smooth.
I'd be very surprised if that didn't work, don't forget that it is quite possible to reform cases like a 30.06/270/25/06 into a 240 Weatherby Magnum complete with belt using normal dies and a good press, so resizing hard military brass fired in oversize chambers is easy if everything is done right.
Hard to believe that 2 die sets, small base and regular, purchased at different times are faulty.
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Old April 19, 2009, 02:19 PM   #8
TACKLEMAN24
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Yes I did clean them with gun solvent and had no luck. Last night I took them out to the garage and soaked them with Brake Cleaner. After cleaning with brake cleaner I was able to use the short base set but still not the full length set. As for the short base set although it is much better it still seams to be not right.
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Old April 19, 2009, 07:42 PM   #9
James R. Burke
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I have the .30-06 die set. No problems works fine even full length resizing, and never had a stuck case. Sorry I cant be any help to you. I would give RCBS a call or e-mail.
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Old April 11, 2013, 11:04 AM   #10
area1509
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Hi guys, I am new to reloading. Was there a resolution to this problem as I did the same thing with my 30-06 RCBS sizer die.

Thanks for any info.
A.J.
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Old April 11, 2013, 12:09 PM   #11
William T. Watts
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After reading your post I'm still not sure if you are using RCBS case lube or one of the other substitutes when lubing your cases. Are you using the RCBS case lube and applying it with your fingers? AS has been pointed out your M-1 Garand may have a oversized chamber, using a micrometer mic over the expansion ring (the part of the case that isn't supported by the chamber). If the measurement is more than .470" it is an oversized chamber, usually most fired 30/06 cases will measure between .467" - .4695".. William
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Old April 11, 2013, 06:10 PM   #12
wncchester
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Insufficently applied lube or an improper type of case lube, it has nothing directly to do with the chamber or die. I occasionally make .22-250 from .30-06 and all I have to do is lube the cases properly.
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Old April 12, 2013, 05:17 AM   #13
Salmoneye
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Oversize chamber would mean nothing, as I have easily sized brass up or down when wild-catting to completely different shapes and neck sizes...

I also have a set of RCBS in .30-06, and have no issues with sizing/decapping...

All I have ever used is a Lee Hand Press, so I do not have the meanest press on the block...
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Old April 12, 2013, 10:22 AM   #14
david_r
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area1509,
The original poster hasn't been here for 4 years. I would suspect that he glossed over the second post in this thread and just said he did what was written while missing the details. If those instructions are followed exactly, it should be a good starting point for setting up the dies.
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Old April 13, 2013, 05:48 AM   #15
Salmoneye
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*facepalm*
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Old April 13, 2013, 11:55 AM   #16
F. Guffey
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#1
TACKLEMAN24
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Join Date: March 8, 2009
Posts: 35 Problems with RCBS 30-06 Dies

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I had an old used set of 30-06 dies that I had been using and worked ok in my M1 Garand. I however found that they ended up being out of tolerance due to the dies being very worn. I went and bought a new set of dies, RCBS Short Base Dies, I have been unable to use them for fear of causing damage to my equipment. I then went out and bought another set of RCBS Full Length Dies and have had the same problem. When I attempt to use the 1st die to expand and de-cap the brass the brass gets stuck in the die. I have taken the decaping unit out of the die and the expander ball part of that mechanism goes right through the case mouths without force, it does not fall right through but I can put it through by hand without any force. Now when I go to put the die in the press without the decapping unit in place and run the fired brass up into the die with the press I can not even get it to go all the way without putting extreme force on the lever. I then play H*L* getting the brass to come back out of the die. I can believe that one set of dies is possibly defective in the die being machined to an in-correct size. On the other hand I can not believe that 2 different die sets, 1 FL and 1 Short Base purchased from 2 different stores being both defective. I am currious if anyone has had a similar problem before either with the dies themselves or with reloading M1 Garand 30-06 Brass. Thanks in advance for your input.



Same question, different dates, nothing has changed.

I would not clean the die with a brake shoe/backing plate/drum degreaser, again, I clean dies with a towel on a dowel. I will assume the OP purchased a small base die, my opinion, before purchasing a small base die the reloader should first be able to determine if a small base die is necessary, when responding to a question of this nature I would think the most important consideration should be the case, AFTER ALL! it is the case that refuses to be sized. Does the case have more resistance to being sized than the press can overcome, again, it is not me that claims the case must be fired 5 times before it it is fully grown, I am the fan of not allowing the case to mature and grown up to become fully grown, still there is that story about firing the case to form then fire it 5 times by neck sizing then to start over by full length sizing, all of that sounds like a bad habit (to me).

One more time, I form cases for short chambers, I ream chambers short, I use formed cases to determine the length of a chamber from the shoulder back to the face bolt, if I need a small base die I know I need a small base die.

In the big inning the M1 Garand had a chamber that accommodated ammo that was designed for the 03 Springfiled and the M1917 Enfield, all three, the 03, M1917 and the M1 used the same ammo, the difference in chambers between the M1 and the 03 and M1917 was .00025.

Another quote of the quote: “I can not even get it to go all the way without putting extreme force on the lever. I then play H*L* getting the brass to come back out of the die” The small base die is smaller than the standard full length sizer die, The OP could have cases that are whipping his press, when a case whips my press(es) I know it, case lube, for the toughest of cases to size I have a lube I can not brag about, it is not on the list approved lubes. Imperial is not on my list of the best, I have friends that turn blue in the face trying to make that stuff look good, they struggle with raising the ram, lowering the ram and then they do not know if the case is is going to be released before braking something like the neck expander assemble. When working with them I insist on changing methods and techniques such as cleaning etc..

F. Guffey
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Old April 13, 2013, 12:15 PM   #17
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I didn't see mention of what case lube you are using. I use Mink Oil Boot Dressing for my bottlenecked sizing. I much prefer that than a spray-on lube...
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