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Old January 22, 2010, 07:34 PM   #1
Join Date: February 22, 2009
Posts: 42
Lee Rifle Dies: Pros and Cons of Deluxe v.s. Pacesetter

In another couple weeks I'm taking the plunge and have pretty much decided on the Lee Deluxe Carbide 4 die pistol dies, - unless anyone has any better suggestions??? But, I'm torn between the Pacesetter and the Deluxe set on the rifle dies. Could someone explain the differences and pros and cons of each? It seems like both sets come with a full size sizing die, I think, and a crimp, so what's the difference and which is better for a newbie learning to reload .223 and 30-06? (I've pretty much decided on the Kempf's Lee Classic Turret set-up for my press).

Thanks for any feedback.
There are two ways to conquer and enslave a nation. One is by the Sword, the other is by Debt. John Adams. 9mm, 223 Rem, 260 Rem, and Browning XT Trap.
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Old January 22, 2010, 08:50 PM   #2
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Deluxe: Collet neck sizing die- full-length sizing die - bullet seating die.
Pacesetter: Factory crimp die - full-length sizing die - bullet seating die.

It all depends on whether you want to crimp or just neck tension.
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Old January 22, 2010, 09:54 PM   #3
Join Date: January 16, 2010
Location: Fort Bliss, Texas
Posts: 24
Go with the pacesetter if you are loading for an autoloader such as an AR. I bought the deluxe kit and ended up buying the factory crimp die later on. Now the neck sizer die sits on my bench collecting dust. I highly recommend the LFCD either way. It really improved my groups.
RRA AR-15, SA Custom Mil-Spec 1911, XD-45 Compact, Ruger P90
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Old January 22, 2010, 10:31 PM   #4
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"I'm torn between the Pacesetter and the Deluxe set on the rifle dies. Could someone explain the differences and pros and cons of each? It seems like both sets come with a full size sizing die, I think, and a crimp, so what's the difference and which is better for a newbie learning to reload .223 and 30-06?"

The Delux includes a collet neck sizer to go with the FL sizer, no crimper. The Pacesetter includes a crimper, no neck die. That's all. There is no direct difference to newbies, either way.

You can purchase the FCD crimpers for pretty cheap, if you want a neck die get the Delux set and add the crimper.

Your press choice is excellant, newbie or not.

Have fun!
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Old January 22, 2010, 11:07 PM   #5
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there is no difference in the quality of the dies between the two set just the dies that come with it. Of late I have been getting the RGB sets as I already have all the shell holders I need and my rifles seem to prefer Full resizing rather than neck sizing. It shouldn't be that way but that seems to be the way it turned out.

You really never know what will work the best.
USNRET '61-'81
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Old January 24, 2010, 10:38 AM   #6
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Posts: 1,879 can always adjust the full length die to neck size if you choose. I like the collet dies, but they are not the only way to neck size. As a matter of fact, many have trouble getting the collet dies to provide enough tension and need to polish down the mandrel.
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Old April 10, 2010, 03:47 PM   #7
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Join Date: April 10, 2010
Location: San Antonio, TX
Posts: 1
Deluxe or Pacesetter, depends on what you reload for

If you are loading for an auto loader, then the Pacesetter may be your best bet, since you should fully resize and crimp your bullets to ensure they will cycle properly in your pistol or auto feed rifle. You should also put a good reliable crimp on auto load and pistol ammo, since it gets banged around quite a bit in the magazine, during multiple firing. Getting and keeping the proper bullet length, shell volume and head spacing is critical to accuracy. Also if the bullet was loose and could get pushed tighter into the shell, you could overpressurize the case, which could be dangerous.

The Deluxe come with the collet size die, so if you want more precise, fire-formed shells to be used back in the same bolt action rifle you originally fired them in, you will have a better fitting shell to chamber, than an original factory round.

For $12.95 plus shipping, you can purchase the Lee manual and read up on the different uses for the various types of dies, before you spend allot of money on something, you may never end up using.

Midway has both the books and possibly the best prices on reloading equipment.

I just started reloading 7mm-08, .308, .30-06, 7mm Rem. mag, 30-30 winchester, .40 S&W, .380 ACP and 9mm. I really like the Lee 4 Die Carbide sets for auto pistols, less then $40 and really easy to use when you order extra quick change bushings, you can leave everything set up to your tried and proven set-up for future reloading. Since most of my rifles are bolt action, the collet dies are perfect for crimping only the neck for fireformed cases, which is supposed to enhance accurary in target shooting.

You really get a nice set up, when you buy the kits that come with almost everything you need to get started.

Good luck with your new hobby, hope you enjoy it as much as the rest of us obviously do.
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