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Old August 9, 2005, 07:44 AM   #1
RERICK
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Lee factory crimp die

I have had nothing but issues with cases that are still within specs but differant by as little 2 thousanths.I read that the Lee factory crimp or a taper crimp was not as sensative to small differance in length and I was wondering if anyone uses either of these types of dies and how well they really work.
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Old August 9, 2005, 08:00 AM   #2
HSMITH
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I have used the Factory crimp die and found no benefit to it at all. I sold all but one, I use it to crimp bullets without a cannelure in 45 Colt.

You don't say what issues you are having, but odds are good that if a FCD fixes the issue it is a band-aid fix and not resolving the root cause.
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Old August 9, 2005, 08:19 AM   #3
RERICK
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crimp

issues like too much or too little crimp as case lengths are slightly longer or shorter.I do trim them now, but I was reading about differant types of crimping dies and I just thought it might make my life easier if I didn't have to trim each case to get a consistant crimp.But if they only cause other issues than there is really no point in using them I will just trim them the same as i have been doing.I load for 38\357 and 44 mag.No semi auto or rifle

Last edited by RERICK; August 9, 2005 at 08:52 AM.
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Old August 9, 2005, 08:59 AM   #4
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Regardless of whether you crimp or not, you do need to trim cases to approx. the same length. For general shooting, 1 - 2 thousandths is OK. The Lee FC die is tolerant of this kind of variance. I use the Lee Factory crimp die on my rifle cartridges. For some reason, I do not get enough neck tension from my sizing die to be sure the bullets won't move in the necks. This is why I started using the crimp die (I already had it, anyway). I use a very light crimp...as light as possible. It seems to work well....and I have noticed no real decrease in case life, as a result.
As to whether it improves accuracy...I cannot say. I've never tested for this. I do not think it hurts accuracy, anyway.
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Old August 9, 2005, 01:06 PM   #5
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I roll crimp the revolvers, taper the autos and always use a LEE Factory crimp die on any rifle reload. I have ran extensive tests using the .243, .270, .280, 30-30, 308, 30-06 and 45-70. In every case the accuracy of those rounds increased. The only one that did not seem to improve was the .308 Win. Of course this is only my opinion as I have only been reloading since Sept. of 1949 and probably do not have as much experience as most of you...
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Old August 9, 2005, 01:20 PM   #6
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Superhornet: I'd have to guess that you have more reloading experience than most of us! I've also read reports of folks finding better accuracy when crimping rifle rounds than not crimping; however, that's not my experience, nor is it the experience of 99.99999999% of competitive rifle shooters.

If you're roll crimping for revolvers or anything else, you should be roll crimping into a cannelure. If you're using a Lee FCD for crimping rifle cases because you don't have enough neck tension, then you're doing something wrong in the sizing step.
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Old August 9, 2005, 04:26 PM   #7
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Zekewolf,
Nice blanket generalization there...."then you're doing something wrong in the sizing step". Horsedung. How would you know WHAT I do during the sizing step ? I lube cases and run them through my sizing/ decapping die as per the instructions that came with the equipment. I always set up the die the same way. I have experimented with adjusting the die in or out a bit, to see if this will change neck tension. It doesn't. So, I may have a (slightly) defective die. Or, didn't this occur to you ? The cases come out of the die, other than neck tension, just right. They chamber just fine. So, "o great one"... what am I doing wrong ? Since you're obviously omniscient....I assume that you will have all of the answers.

I'm not trying to start an argument - and I don't intend to fight about it. My only point is, when you make blanket generalizations which find fault with the actions or activities of others...it might be good to have some direct knowledge of that about which you are talking. In this case, that's impossible. So, your statement can really be classified as "talking out of your a**".... can it not ?

Sorry for the sarcasm. Oh and by the way, I'm not upset about it. It's no big deal. I just always have had a problem with self-proclaimed "experts". You aren't one of those, are you ?
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Old August 9, 2005, 07:52 PM   #8
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Olaf: I'm not a self-proclaimed expert, nor do I claim to be such. However, it's pretty rudimentary that improper neck tension means that something's wrong. I don't know if you're doing something wrong or not; just that something's not right. Could be an out-of-spec sizing die. Maybe my memory fails me, but it seems that I recall that you're sort of new at rifle reloading. I'm sure you couldn't benefit from the experiences of a few of us who've loaded a few thousand rounds. (Pardon the sarcasm, but I just despise ingrates.)

Oh, I'm not a psychiatrist, either, but I wouldn't hesitate to diagnose you as paranoid and Napoleonic.
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Old August 9, 2005, 08:14 PM   #9
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Play nice now

Didn't your moms teach you two any manners.LOL
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Old August 9, 2005, 09:40 PM   #10
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The only Lee FC die I have is for 8x57. I get slightly better accuracy with the crimp than without it. I'm guessing this has a lot to do with improving consistancy when shooting rifles with 50-80 years worth of throat wear that anything else.

crimping on reloads that ar eto be shot through a new barrel with a near perfect throat probably isn't going to help accuracy much, but that is just my opinion.
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Old August 9, 2005, 09:45 PM   #11
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I have found the Lee factory crimp to be a good die! When reloading cartridges like 223 for my Bushmaster. It puts no pressure on the case at all but for the area where the case is being crimped. I really like the lee factory crimp die! For bottle neck type cartridges. I'm sure they would work great for long straight wall cartridges like the 45-70 and 444 marlin.
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Old August 9, 2005, 09:53 PM   #12
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Superhornet! You have many more years than me . I started reloading around 89.

Hummmm! "Superhornet" Is that some kind of wild cat you made?
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Old August 9, 2005, 09:58 PM   #13
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Zekewolf: Oh, yes, I am rather new to reloading. I am grateful for any good information and advice that I can get from the experienced reloaders here, including yourself. My comments were designed to make a point (that you were making an over-generalization, when you had no facts to go on) - that's all. Obviously, you do recognize that my neck tension issue could be out-of-spec equipment (since you stated such). Fine. That's all I wanted. I am not an ingrate...I appreciate your experience and knowledge (superior to mine, no doubt) - I just don't appreciate broad generalizations.

But, I have no problem with you. You now know how I feel about the issue. I now know that you consider my objection to your generalization as a sign of being an "ingrate". This leads me to believe that you consider that your original statement, that, in essence... 'if I was getting poor neck tension, then I must be doing something wrong'....was somehow good and constructive advice. It obviously wasn't. Therefore, I am an ingrate for not simply accepting your "advice", right ? You might have had a point, IF it had been constructive advice - and not just idle criticism- which is exactly what it actually was.

You are not, by your own admission, a psychiatrist....but now you've decided that I am paranoid and Napoleonic...(in addition to being an "ingrate")? Another rather broad generalization, wouldn't you say ? I realise that you are upset...and that your ego is bruised...because I "challenged" you. Nevertheless, I have not gotten personal...and you have. I think that says alot....

As I said though, I have no problem with you. I now have a bit more insight into your personality. That is always useful. I look forward to discussing lots more reloading issues and interesting topics with you in future (assuming that you won't now have a tantrum...and refuse to ever talk to me again - which I am sure will not be the case). After all, we are all adults here, right ? I also look forward to being able to gain from your knowledge and experience...and learn from you and all the other experienced people here. Just do not, please, expect that I will simply lie down at command - it won't happen.

Best wishes. Have a nice day.
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Old August 10, 2005, 07:26 AM   #14
wingman
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Quote:
I have had nothing but issues with cases that are still within specs but differant by as little 2 thousanths.I read that the Lee factory crimp or a taper crimp was not as sensative to small differance in length and I was wondering if anyone uses either of these types of dies and how well they really work.
I use the lee factory crimp die on 45acp, 9mm, 40s&w, with good results,
overall (in my opinion) turns out a more consistant round, especially helpful
in a tight chamber pistol like some Kimbers and I have a cz75B that falls
in this area that is super accurate.

I have heard/read the LFC will cause accuracy problems I have not found
this to be true in thousands of rounds, I prefer the idea of seating and crimping in different stages no matter the die used. My feeling buy one
and give it a try.
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Old August 10, 2005, 08:43 AM   #15
Superhornet
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zekewolf---------IT has nothing to do with neck tension. After having loaded as many rounds as I have, you would pretty well have to figure that I would know what neck tension is. It has to do with accuracy. I had seen a lot of initial testing with the crimp and without. Most of the data showed an actual tightening of the groups, so I decided to do my own testing with the FCD on rifles. 99.999999% of my reloads are used against four legged competition and not two legged. Never had an ungulate ask me if I was sure the rounds neck tension and sizing were properly done.
The FCD for rifles ?? As good as the best and better than the rest. Competition ?? I won a few handguns years ago shooting.......but, taper crimped......have a good day...
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Old August 10, 2005, 08:45 AM   #16
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Olaf: Lighten up a little. The statement about my not being a psychiatrist and the ensuing diagnosis weren't meant to be taken seriously. Bet that was obvious to everybody but you! Did I "step on some toes?"

I don't view my suggestions as "generalizations." My suggestions were/are pretty specific.

You've revealed your personality on your own, without any help from me. I'm pretty sure that any experienced reloaders following this thread will quickly determine who's making noises from his rectal orifice (see your initial response), and who's trying to be of help. Don't you have trouble being heard, making noises from that orifice when it's got your head so deeply embedded?
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Old August 10, 2005, 10:43 AM   #17
crazylegs
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Uh, Gang. I think we are talking apples and oranges. The pistol LFCD and rifle LFCD are totally different animals.
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Old August 10, 2005, 12:44 PM   #18
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"Uh, Gang. I think we are talking apples and oranges. The pistol LFCD and rifle LFCD are totally different animals.
Crazylegs"

Actually there are three distinct versions on the Lee FCD. On the bottle necked rifle rounds, it is a collet the squeezes the neck into the bullet at 90 degrees to the neck, sort of like a stab crimp. On semi-auto pistol cartridges, it's a taper crimp with the addition of a carbide final sizer at the base of the die. In revolver shells it's a roll crimper also with a carbide sizer at the bottom. The carbide sizer is there to remove any bulges that occur during seating the bullets. It can and does turn a shell that won't fully enter a chamber into one that functions.

Olaf, you may indeed need a new sizing die. Sounds like the neck portion is a little large. OR it could be your bullets are a little undersize,(a point that zekewolf didn't even consider)!!! Another solution to your problem would be to buy a bushing neck sizer. Then you can tailor make you neck size by changing bushings. That sizer of yours wouldn't be a lee collet sizer would it?
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Old August 10, 2005, 01:43 PM   #19
Olaf
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Thanks, snuffy.
In fact, no, my sizing die is not a Lee COLLET die...but it is the standard Lee (full-length) sizing die. I will check the sizing "assembly" in the die (on the Lee, it's not a ball)...as has been suggested to me already. I may, in fact, need a new die. Your idea, that the bullets could be a bit undesize, certainly is a possibility. Good thinking. I've checked a few of them, in the past...and they've always been spot on - .323". However, it's certainly possible that a proportion of each box of them could be undersized (manufacturing tolerances). That didn't occur to me. Thanks for the idea.
I will also check closely the inside dimension of the sized cases - to see if I can gain any further evidence as to whether the die is out of spec.

I have considered a neck sizing die....especially since, after the first firing, I neck size (only) my cases. I do want to emphasize though, that the neck tension "issue"...is not really too bothersome. When I say that the neck tension is not sufficient...I mean that the bullet can be made to move by pushing the completed round, tip first, against a block of wood - with moderate pressure. It is NOT as if the bullet can be moved with finger pressure, or anything like that. The light crimp I apply (with the Lee FCD), seems to eliminate the problem...or at least, it's potential effects. I didn't intend to turn this thread in the direction of discussing my neck tension "problem". It's really not that much of a problem, in a practical sense...and so far as I can tell, it isn't causing any problems with chambering or accuracy. So, I will take a look at the items that have been suggested...but let's not make this the focus here.

I suppose that I bear a good bit of blame for making the neck tension issue more "visible" than it should have been (I only initially mentioned it in passing, as I was commenting about why I do use the Lee FCD). Sorry if the thread seemed to be getting hijacked. Things went sideways when I was accused of, in essence, 'screwing it up somehow' (as the likely or only possible cause). I should have simply ignored this useless comment, at the time. My bad. I have learned something though, about who I can deal with reasonably here...and who I can't. So, it's not a total loss.

In any case, thanks everyone, for the advice (the USEFUL advice, anyway).
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Old August 10, 2005, 03:14 PM   #20
RERICK
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I load for 38\357 and 44 magnum

I have heard about good results in rifle and semi auto and while I appreciate the posative feedback my question is this has anyone tried them for revolver ammo?
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Old August 10, 2005, 05:07 PM   #21
HSMITH
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I have tried them in 45 colt, 38 special, 357 magnum, and 44 magnum. I found no apparent gain except for using bullets without a cannelure in 45 Colt. Other than that I did not see any gain of any sort compared to standard dies from Lee, RCBS, Lyman, Hornady, or Redding. I don't bulge cases or use bullets incorrectly sized, so the post sizing feature means nothing to me.

If you want the best crimp die money can buy for revolver cartridges get a Redding Profile Crimp die. WESHOOT2 clued me in on them, and I really like them. Slight gain in accuracy, and super easy adjustments, and REALLY firm crimps if desired without bulged cases are the biggest gains I saw.

Someone that likes the FCD in revolver rounds help me out, how does the cabide ring work on the tapered cases in some revolver rounds?
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Old August 10, 2005, 09:54 PM   #22
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RERICK Quote – “I have heard about good results in rifle and semi auto and while I appreciate the posative feedback my question is this has anyone tried them for revolver ammo?”

I use the LFC dies for 357 & 44. Seem to work real good from my experience. Real easy to adjust.


Olaf Quote – “I use the Lee Factory crimp die on my rifle cartridges. For some reason, I do not get enough neck tension from my sizing die to be sure the bullets won't move in the necks.”

This could happen if your brass needs annealed. Not sure if this is your problem but you might check.
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Old August 10, 2005, 10:57 PM   #23
Olaf
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Thanks, Bullet94. Another thoughtful suggestion. My brass is all nearly new, fired 0, 1, 2...max. 3 times. So, as I understand it, annealing shouldn't be needed at this point. Please correct me if I am wrong on this.
Nevertheless, thanks for the suggestion.

Who knows? Perhaps my cases weren't annealed properly, in the first place. There are no signs of cracks developing or the brass "working" (that I can see)...and the cases run through the sizing die easily - with not too much effort (and I use a hand press, so I can feel a small difference in effort required). The light crimping that I do also requires very little effort. So, it seems as if the case necks might be OK. I'm new at this - so I can't be sure. But, I am considering every possibility.
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Old August 21, 2005, 06:40 AM   #24
RERICK
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Well I went out and bought the Lee die and all I can say is I wish I had done it sooner.Now I get the best looking crimps I think possible.What a great job this thing does and no more bulged cases.These factory crimp dies are the best thing since sliced bread
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Old August 21, 2005, 06:48 AM   #25
RERICK
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I just finished loading 100 38 and 357 and used my new Lee factory crimp die and I just can't believe what a great job that this tool does.Now instead of inconsistant crimps they are all the same and they look great.I wish I had bought one sooner.
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