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Old November 10, 2012, 02:47 PM   #26
Bart B.
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I don't know what "case" headspace gauge you ordered, but it's the RCBS Precision Mic, that's what I use as it's a good one.

Put a fired case in it then screw the measuring thimble down to where it just stops against the case shoulder. Note and record the reading on the thimble.

Put your full length sizing die in the press with the ram/shell holder all the way up and screw it down until it just touches the shell holder. Lock the die in place.

Clean, lube then full length size a fired case. Measure its case head space the same way as before. Adjust the die height in the press such that fired case headspace is about 2 thousandths shorter than fired case head space.

The instructions that come with the guage should pretty much say what I did above.
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Old November 10, 2012, 02:54 PM   #27
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Ah-ha. . . . the full-length versus neck-only fired case sizing issue raises its heads again......

And that animal (issue?) will continue to raise its head forever. If neck-only is the answer preferred, it is usually selected by folks who:

* Base a reload’s accuracy by the smallest few-shot test group shot claim the components, tools and techniques used to do that are what should be used and done. Doesn’t matter what the size of the largest group was ‘cause they’re believers that tiniest means most accurate as far as groups are concerned.

* Think the best alignment of a chambered round’s bullet to the bore can only happen when there’s minimal clearance between the case body and neck to the chamber body and neck. And therefore, the least a fired case is sized, the better, more perfect, best bullet alignment to the bore can only happen with fired cases so sized.

* Are convinced best accuracy has always been with benchrest rifles using neck only sized cases. And no other type of rifle could possibly shoot as accurate as the ones used in benchrest matches.

Those believers of such might want to consider the following facts:

* Sierra Bullets did what’s probably the most intensive and proper tests of all sorts of fired case sizing techniques with all sorts of tools back in the 1950's. Their ballistic technician wanted to use the tools and techniques that produced the most accurate ammunition in all sorts of barrels and chambers. They’ve been full length sizing all their cases used to test their product for accuracy since then. That’s for both super-accurate rail guns testing bullets for quality control as well as sporting rifles for load development in their reloading guide.

* Bottleneck ammunition cases center perfectly up front in the chamber when they’re fired. Most of them do so when they’re chambered before they’re fired. This happens because of the case and chamber shape and the external forces pushing on the loaded round before the primer fires. They do not rest at the bottom of the chamber; a claim often stated as what happens. Note that virtually every cartridge chambered has its back end pushed off center in the chamber until it stops against the chamber by the extractor; they're rarely perfectly centered at their back end.

* Full length sized bottleneck cases without expander balls but with neck diameters a couple thousandths smaller than a loaded round’s neck diameter end up with their neck better centered on the case shoulder than neck only sizing produces. Expander balls are not used.

* High power match rifles (normally shoulder fired) when tested for accuracy in machine rests with full length sized cases have produced many-shot test groups smaller than current benchrest records. Full length sized fired cases used in them’s been the match-winning and record-setting standard for decades.

* Benchresters have been moving to proper full length sizing for best accuracy; especially with maximum, hot loads.

* Best tests for ammo accuracy need to have at least 20 shots per test group. Then use the mean radius of all shot holes from group center for the measurement. Extreme spread is also good (if at least 30 or more shots pre group is used) as it represents the area all fired shots will probably go inside of.

Last edited by Bart B.; November 10, 2012 at 02:59 PM.
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Old November 10, 2012, 03:15 PM   #28
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Thanks for those posts. Im convinced enough now. Also, i have gotten tired of my neck sized reloads being so hard to chamber.

I have to purchase a FL die. I have my shopping cart open at Brownells as we speak. I am looking at the Redding S-Type FL bushing die. Is this a good die?

I am just taking a guess on the bushing size by going with a .248 and a .249 for a 22-250. Once fired cases in this gun have a OD mouth measurement of .255 to .256 Does this sound about right? Steel or the Titanium?
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Old November 10, 2012, 04:25 PM   #29
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SEHunter, if your loaded round case mouths measure .256" at their smallest, get a bushing with an inside diameter of .255" or .254". You typically need bushings about 1 to 3 thousandths smaller than a loaded round diameter. For 22 caliber cases, only 1 or 2 thousandths smaller is good enough as they don't have enough recoil to make harder neck grip on bullets a requirement.

It depends on the neck wall thickness as well as how hard or soft the brass is in case necks. Some folks get 2 or 3 bushings covering a range they'll want to experiment with.

Yes, get either the RCBS or Redding full bushing die. Sierra Bullets uses the Redding version, but both are top notch stuff.

Last edited by Bart B.; November 10, 2012 at 07:11 PM.
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Old November 10, 2012, 05:21 PM   #30
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Quote:
• Base a reload’s accuracy by the smallest few-shot test group shot claim the components, tools and techniques used to do that are what should be used and done. Doesn’t matter what the size of the largest group was ‘cause they’re believers that tiniest means most accurate as far as groups are concerned.
I love the subtle sarcasm in that statement. Maybe that is why there are so many internet claims of sub MOA rack Garands. The shooter shoots enough five shots groups till one comes out ½”. The stack of 4 MOA targets are simply thrown in the trash!

I shot a small bore prone match today, got to have lunch with a Wimbleton Cup Winner and I asked about sizing dies. First of all, everyone we know full length sizes their match brass. Match shooters are competing against a clock, typically 20 rounds for record in 20 minutes. When shooting period is over, and you have not fired your 20 rounds, you earn a big fat “0” for each unfired shot which is equal to 10 points per dropped shot. Considering the best shooters drop maybe two-three points, and the match winner is going to shoot a 199 or 200, losing 10 points guarantees a saturated crying towel.

Long range shooters must have reliable, safe and accurate ammunition. Having to break position, find a cleaning rod, and knock out a stuck case is very bad. You don’t get extra sighting sights once you are in your record period, changing position will change point of impact, the wind will have changed (always) and this is not obvious to some, when the wind changes, so does the point of impact. You shoot as fast as you can before conditions change and you pray the conditions come back soon.

I did learn that many of the best shooters are using bushing type dies.
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Last edited by Slamfire; November 10, 2012 at 06:50 PM.
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Old November 10, 2012, 07:09 PM   #31
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Slamfire's comments on my post above his:
Quote:
I love the subtle sarcasm in that statement. Maybe that is why there are so many internet claims of sub MOA rack Garands.
I laughed so darned hard I almost fell out of my chair reading that. Reminded me of what actually happened one afternoon at the outdoor test range in the gulley behind the USN Small Arms Match Conditioning Unit in the late 1960's. A USN rifle team member (who set the 1000-yard scope sight record at the Nationals in 1970 with the first 7mm Rem. Mag. used in competition) was handed a brand new 7.62 NATO match conditioned Garand that tested about 2 inches for the average of three 10-shot test groups at 300 yards as fired from the accuracy test cradle using a good lot of M118 ammo. The armourer who built it wanted to have its trigger checked out by a competant shooter. He laid down prone with a full clip and put all 8 of them inside 7/8 inch at 300 yards; about .280 MOA. Don McCoy, the guy who built the Garand (and later many more great Garands after he left the Unit) immediately exclaimed in so many words: "Oh great. We gotta burn that target and destroy all evidence such a group was ever shot else everyone will want a Garand that does that well!!!" The guy who shot that group commented that the trigger was just fine.
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Old November 10, 2012, 08:23 PM   #32
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"SEHunter, if your loaded round case mouths measure .256" at their smallest, get a bushing with an inside diameter of .255" or .254". You typically need bushings about 1 to 3 thousandths smaller than a loaded round diameter. For 22 caliber cases, only 1 or 2 thousandths smaller is good enough as they don't have enough recoil to make harder neck grip on bullets a requirement."

Bart B.-
the measurement i got of .255 to .256 was the mouth of a fired case that i have not resized or loaded yet. Most of the loaded cases i have on hand are about .252 at the mouth. Maybe instead of .248 and .249, i should go with the .249 and a .250

What is the difference between the high dollar dies and the ones in the $30 to $50 range? The Redding i have my eye on is around $50. About to price the RCBS.
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Old November 10, 2012, 08:36 PM   #33
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If your loaded round mic at ..252", then a .251" and .250" bushing would be about right.

I don't know what other "high dollar" dies you're referring to. But either the Redding or RCBS full bushing dies are equal in making good ammo.
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Old November 10, 2012, 09:03 PM   #34
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Thanks alot. I feel like i have the answers i have been looking for. Now i just have to buy the new dies and measurement tool.

The high dollar dies i was talking about are also Redding. Seems all brands have a premium line of dies but i cant afford to go that route. They are around $100 and up.
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Old November 11, 2012, 12:26 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SEHunter
I am looking at the Redding S-Type FL bushing die. Is this a good die?
Yes, this is the set you want. http://www.midwayusa.com/product/271...308-winchester

If that's not within your budget consider a Redding body die with a Lee collet die.
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Old November 11, 2012, 12:35 PM   #36
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Instead of a Redding body die with a Lee collet die, you'll get better accuracy with a standard full length sizing die. Sierra Bullets proved years ago the Lee Collet Dies are not all that great for making accurate ammo; neither is any other neck only sizing die. They've been using full length sizing dies since the 1950's reloading cases used to test their bullets for accuracy. Nobody shoot's 'em as accurate as they do. In both factory sporting rifles as well as benchrest type rail guns used for quality control.
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Old November 11, 2012, 02:32 PM   #37
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The Redding match dies look good but i dont have the funds to go that high right now. I do like the integrated measurement piece. If it works like i think it does and allows you to know how many .000s' you are adjusting instead of just guessing and repeatedly sizing different cases to find the measurement, then thats cool and i may upgrade eventually.

I bought the standard Redding S-type bushing FL sizer die and the RCBS precision mic. Cant wait to chamber easily again.
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Old November 12, 2012, 10:08 AM   #38
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From loademwells question;
Quote:
thanks! I bet that was the problem I was having. My mentor (who is an old school reloader) wasn't advised that I had neck sized die's. or didn't understand it yet. He told me "Always use lube on your casing" Even when I questioned him about the "lubeless dies" he replied; "Don't know nothing about them, but I'm sure it wouldn't hurt anything."
So all in all, I bet that was the prob. While letting the live round sit in the gun for a while, the lube fused inside of the chamber. Shooting it off must have jolted it free.
Lessons learned, Clean all finished rounds off before you load them up.
I was including my one time hard to open bolt experence and that the cause was overpressure and that over pressure was caused by the RCBS case lube cementing the bullet into the case.
I had a complete case separation and blown primer with that incident and when i tryed to pull the bullets on the other cartridges in that lot i pulled the bullet in two and it didn't come out of the case. I then put them through the press w/seating die treaded in a couple turns and each round broke free with a crack and a very hard lever pull.
Now for your incident.
Just how long had this cartridge been chambered in your rifle?
If over a good number of months for what ever your reason to do so is and the fact that you were neck sizing for what ever reason and the rounds were not cleaned of lubricant, then I can then see that you might have your answer that was basicly stumbled on to with my answer.
I would certainly do some feeding tests with the rest of the cartridges in that lot and pay attention to how they come out of your ammo packaging as that may give you a confermation that the lube is hadening.
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Old November 12, 2012, 10:47 AM   #39
Bart B.
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I've seen a couple of fired cases from a .30-06 that had a ragged edge at their shoulder where the neck broke off and went down the barrel with the bullet. Yes, the case heads had extruded well back into the bolt face cutouts and the primer was well mushroomed out of its pocket and even the dimple from the firing pin was barely visible. Lots of force on the back end of that case. Didn't seem to hurt that old Winchester 70 bolt or receiver.

Inspection of those many-year-old handloads showed the corrosion from dissimilar metal contact(copper bullet jacket against brass case neck) had bonded them together. The force needed to get the bullet and the case neck out of the chamber was enough to break the case neck off the round. First thing the ammo owner tried was to break the bond between bullet and case mouth by seating the bullet deeper. That resulted in pushing the shoulder back into the case body. He trashed the rest of it.
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Old November 12, 2012, 05:17 PM   #40
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Bart,
This incident happened 25 + years ago and there was no way for MY ammo to have been more than 3 years old. It was most certainly the RCBS case lube as I had just started lubing inside the necks because of the irritable expander ball squeek as I retracted the case out of the die.
And back in those days I was pushing the velocity to the point I wouldn't use my new Hornady book or the Spear books I used the older manual that gave me loads with more velocity, and as I was young and more inexperenced i was having very short case life when setting dies for my Ruger 77R with excess head space. I started to neck size to save on cases but that incident made me open my eyes to head spacing when the primer was blown completly out of the 1st 1/2 of the case.
I use Lee case lube for years now and do not always tumble my brass, and actually I tumble before resizing now because of the media in the flash hole issue.
I havn't checked cartridges for stuck bullets for a long time now but I don't seem to keep many loaded rounds in storage for some reason, oh ya, its something to do with Grandson's
I have seen old pre 1898 handguns that have bulged cylinders and even blown cylinders after the owners fired period ammunition in them. Then the old "Black Powder gets more powerful with age" story's start to come out.
I believe that in many of those incidents your discription of bullet to case fusing is spot on.
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Last edited by Gbro; November 12, 2012 at 05:27 PM.
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Old November 12, 2012, 05:55 PM   #41
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What is the prefered way to lube for the FL? i have always used one shot but some say to not lube the shoulder. If its a light coat, is it ok? I usually make one or two passes with the aerosol can on opposite sides.
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Old November 12, 2012, 06:07 PM   #42
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SEHunter, it's my opinion that whatever way the lube of your choice gets evenly distributed on the outside of the case is best. If it's not the same amount on all the cases, full length sized bottleneck cases will have quite a spread in their head-to-shoulder measurement. I like that spread to be under 2 thousandths. I've tried spray on, rub on, and roll on case lube of just about all makes available. None gave the results after sizing as what I ended up using; read the next paragraph.

I tumble my decapped then cleaned cases in a foam-lined metal coffee can in a Thumbler's Tumbler. Putting 5 drops of my lube (a 60-40 mix of STP engine oil treatment and Hoppe's No. 9 bore cleaner) on the foam's enough to evenly coat 50 cases. I tumble them for the time it takes to full length size the previously lubed 50 cases.

After full length sizing all those slippery cases, I clean them by putting a hundred or two on a large terry cloth bath towel tube (one end sewed closed) that's got a bunch of laquer thinner dribbled on its inside. Then closing the open end in one hand and holding the closed end with the other, I shush the brass back and forth in that 4-foot long 1-foot diameter towel tube. That quickly cleans off all the lube making the cases now ready for primer, powder then bullet. Then turn the cloth tube inside out and let it dry then it's ready for use again using the other side of the cloth. After several uses on both sides, it goes in the clothes washer and drier to clean it out.

Last edited by Bart B.; November 12, 2012 at 06:14 PM.
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Old November 12, 2012, 07:49 PM   #43
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What is the prefered way to lube for the FL? i have always used one shot but some say to not lube the shoulder. If its a light coat, is it ok? I usually make one or two passes with the aerosol can on opposite sides

Take your case lube pad-Lightly lubed.Lay 10 or 12 cases down,roll them back and forth a few times,FL size them and then throw them back in tumbler for 10 or 15 minutes. You can get well over 200 done in no time doing this.
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Old November 12, 2012, 09:02 PM   #44
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what about the neck? With a bushing die, is lubing the necks no longer necessary?
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Old November 12, 2012, 09:53 PM   #45
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Yes, lubing the necks is needed for bushing dies. I think one needs to lube all parts of the case that touches the sizing die. You don't need very much on case necks. Too much and part of it might get pushed back down the neck and up the shoulder sometimes causing a dent in the shoulder from a wad of lube at that point.
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Old November 12, 2012, 10:00 PM   #46
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Too much and part of it might get pushed back down the neck and up the shoulder sometimes causing a dent in the shoulder from a wad of lube at that point.

Pay close attention to this statement. It caught me first time i started loading.
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Old November 13, 2012, 08:04 AM   #47
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Thanks guys.

Bart, I don't know if I trust myself with correctly using your method, I may just continue with the aerosol and make sure I don't over spray. Besides, once a few have been sized, there is probably enough lube in the die to make up for an occasional case that is under lubed. How did you come up with the STP/Hoppes formula?
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Old November 13, 2012, 08:27 AM   #48
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I got that Hoppe's-STP formula from Martin Hull in the late 1960's. He was Sierra Bullets' first ballistic tech and later their ballistics lab manager who reloaded their cases used to test bullets for accuracy from the early 1950's to the mid 1980's. He was also one of the best high power match rifle competitors in the USA as well as in international long range matches.
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Old November 13, 2012, 09:13 AM   #49
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can you describe how you put together the coffe can with the foam as well as the Thumblers tumbler? im not familiar with it.
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Old November 13, 2012, 10:50 AM   #50
Bart B.
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Thumbler's Tumbler

http://www.thumlerstumbler.com/rotary.html

The Model A-R2 No. 115 is the current version of the one I got decades ago. I bought it at a gun show but it didn't have the barrels with it.

Took a metal 40-ounce coffee can and made a rectangular liner for it out of 3/8" thick foam as wide as the inside of the coffee can is tall and as long as the circumference of the can. Made a round foam liner to fit the bottom of the can. Used duct tape to hold the ends of the liner together.

Put friction tape on the outside of the can that lined up with the rubber rollers on the driving and coasting rods. I've had it since the late 1960's. Had to replace the rubber rollers a few years ago but Thumbler's had them in stock as well as the nylon bushings that fit the rods to the base.

Recently taped two coffee cans together (bottom of one cut out) to have twice the capacity and lined it with 1/8" thick rubber foam for tumbling fired cases with media (rice and BB's) to clean them. Built a larger base to hold them and the drive motor, but it's worth it. I put one empty can with the foam lined one to use on the larger base so they'll stay in place.




Two-can rifle case cleaner's in place on the rollers. Red top single can's set up to tumble pistol cases, blue-green topped one's foam lined for lubing cases. Note four rows of friction tape on the blue-green top one; it doesn't weigh much with foam and cases inside so I had to double the friction from rollers to can. The other cans have media and cases in them when used and they put enough weight on the rollers.

Look closely at the nail driven into the base at the bottom right part of the two-can one in the other picture. It just touches the can's rim. Another nail at the top next to the red cover is also in place. These two nails keep the cans in place so they don't move the tape off the rollers. And they also keep the cover in place so the media and cases won't fall out and make one huge mess with the motor running. That happened once; years ago and I didn't want to clean up another mess again. Best use of nails I've ever driven into something.

Last edited by Bart B.; November 13, 2012 at 11:03 AM.
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