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Old November 1, 2013, 08:17 PM   #1
marcuss
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Question on Die sets

Greetings friends,

I'm curious as to what would be a better die to purchase as I see these two different dies come in different sets.

One would be a full length cartridge resizing die

The Next would be just a next resizing die

I'll be reloading for a 30-06, single stage press

and later 9mm as well.

Any help would be much appreciated.
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Old November 1, 2013, 08:38 PM   #2
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I prefer FL dies.
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Old November 1, 2013, 08:43 PM   #3
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You can neck size with a full length die but not the other way around. If you are hunting you really need to load for function rather than accuracy which means the shoulder eventually will need to be set back, more than likely. Go with the F/L dies.
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Old November 1, 2013, 08:46 PM   #4
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You can neck size for your 06 with FL dies.

While I was typing.
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Old November 1, 2013, 09:45 PM   #5
Bart B.
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While "neck" sizing with .30-06 full length sizing dies is popular (it's called partial full length sizing)it's not all that great for best accuracy.

What happens most of the time is the fired case body gets sized down and pushes the shoulder forward while only part of the neck's sized. That often causes bolts to bind when closed on that case as its shoulder is too far forward to let the bolt close easily on it.

That makes the bolt bind upon closing but rarely at the same place for each shot. The results is less accuracy as proved in rifles with ammo good enough to easily see the difference.

Partial full length sizing's also claimed to better center the case in the chamber. Champions of that line of reasoning typically don't realize that rimless bottleneck brand new cases center perfectly up front in the chamber when they're fired; matching case and chamber shoulders make that happen. So do full length sized cases. Firing pins drive them there.

Properly set up in the press so fired case necks are set back no more than a couple thousandths inch, full length sizing dies make the most accurate ammo. But only when the bolt closes freely without binding on sized cases. Been proved for decades. Even benchresters finally figured that out a few years ago and quit neck sizing for the most part.

Neck only sizing dies typically don't center the case neck as perfectly centered on the case shoulder as full length sizing dies do.

What 9mm cartridge are you referrint to?
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Old November 2, 2013, 04:05 AM   #6
marcuss
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As always thanks for all the feedback, I was leaning towards a full length resizing die.

I was thinking of picking up this set.

RCBS X-Die 2-Die Set 30-06 Springfield

http://www.midwayusa.com/product/246...06-springfield
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Old November 2, 2013, 04:09 AM   #7
marcuss
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Quote:
What 9mm cartridge are you referrint to?
I did not have any combo or bass preference in mind.

I just shoot standard 9mm Luger at the range. PMC 124 grain fmj.
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Old November 2, 2013, 10:54 AM   #8
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9x19

I suggest a Lyman 4-die 'Deluxe' set for 9x19, and add a LEE Carbide Factory Crimp die.

Or buy a LEE set that includes the FCD.

Install Forster/Bonanza die-lock rings (for reduced brain damage ).
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Old November 2, 2013, 12:48 PM   #9
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I don't think RCBS's X dies are all that good for best accuracy. But their marketing hype makes lots of people think they're great. Pushing back the case mouth by their shoulder in the neck area means that metal has to go someplace back in the case shoulder or body.

You don't need to trim cases after each sizing and shooting cycle. Most of the standard full length sizing dies will easily go with trimming every 15 or so cycles.
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Old November 2, 2013, 01:06 PM   #10
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I'd recommend the standard Full Length Die sets also rather than the X-die for loading 30-06. For 9MM a standard carbide die set and make sure it has a taper crimp seating die. You can't beat RCBS for both sets. Don't forget shellholders.
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Old November 2, 2013, 03:28 PM   #11
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Full length, especially if you're going to use them in more than one rifle. I like Lee dies. I'll use RCBS if I get a super de dooper good deal on them.
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Old November 2, 2013, 03:46 PM   #12
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I made the terrible mistake of neck sizing a couple hundred .30-06 rounds. Now they can only be fired in the rifle the casings were salvaged from. I won't be making THAT mistake again.
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Old November 2, 2013, 04:59 PM   #13
marcuss
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Quote:
I don't think RCBS's X dies are all that good for best accuracy.
I'm curious what you would recommend. I did notice that the RCBS dies are more expensive that others that I looked at.
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Old November 2, 2013, 05:12 PM   #14
marcuss
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Quote:
I made the terrible mistake of neck sizing a couple hundred .30-06 rounds.
Sorry to hear the laborious error but just so I understand you fully, do only use full length re-sizing now since just neck sizing was limiting you to the rifle the rounds were shot out of?
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Old November 2, 2013, 05:38 PM   #15
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If I had to pick either one or the other and stick with it forever, I'd say full-length. Sooner or later you're going to need to FL resize cases, especially if you intend to feed a self-loader like a Garand; might as well be set up from the start.

You can always add a neck sizing die later, or why not buy a Lee Loader? They're inexpensive and a lot of fun, and you can toss them into a toolbox with a small can of powder, some primers and some bullets, and even a compact electronic scale, and take a compact, basic reloading rig "on the road" if you should so desire, plus you have a backup loading system available if something disastrous should happen to your main setup.
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Old November 2, 2013, 06:13 PM   #16
Nathan
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For both the 30'06 and 9mm, I would reccomend Hornady die sets. I would add a separate crimp die for 9mm like the Lee FCD or Hdy Taper Crimp Die.

I like Hdy lock rings, decaper setup, seating depth adjustment and general usability. I prefer them to RCBS and Lee.....mostly due to the features listed being better IMHO on Hdy die sets.
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Old November 2, 2013, 07:37 PM   #17
marcuss
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Once again I wish to thank everyone for their grace and help!
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Old November 2, 2013, 08:33 PM   #18
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Quote:
I made the terrible mistake of neck sizing a couple hundred .30-06 rounds. Now they can only be fired in the rifle the casings were salvaged from. I won't be making THAT mistake again.
Neck sizing for the rifle the cases were fired in is standard practice (assuming a bolt action). I do not interchange cartridges. For any expectation of accuracy the load should be worked-up for the rifle it is going to be used in. If you want to be able to shoot cartridges in any rifle for which it is chambered, you should use factory ammo. If you are going to use cases that have been fired in another rifle, of course they should be full-length re-sized. This is hand loading 101.
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Old November 2, 2013, 09:15 PM   #19
Bart B.
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Marcuss asks what dies I would recommend.

For best accuracy and case life, I'd get full length bushing dies, RCBS or Redding with bushing diameters a couple thousandths smaller than a loaded round's neck diameter. They cost more but there's none better commercially. You can use the same set across several .30-06 rifles but you'll need a headspace gauge (RCBS Precision Mic or equal thereof) so you can measure case headspace and set the dies in the press to set fired case shoulders back a couple thousandths.
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Old November 2, 2013, 09:39 PM   #20
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When some one asks me about full length re sizing or neck sizes I always ask four questions.

1) What actioned rifle do you plan on using the ammo in, semi or bolt?
2) What advantage do you think full length has over neck sizing?
3) Do you own multiple rifles in the same caliber?
4) Do you plan on loading range pick ups?

If it's an M1 grand or another semi auto, forget it, just full length re-size. Bolt action rifles are really the only ones that will benefit from a neck sizing. (Not in every case but pretty much) Neck sized rounds don't chamber well in a semi auto.

Some people think Neck sizing is the magical thing to make super accurate ammo. Don't get me wrong, it does help, but it's only one factor in about a dozen factors that help produce accurate sub MOA producing rounds.

As mentioned before, once a piece of brass is fire formed to a particular rifle's chamber then it will likely not chamber will in another rifle. So if you accidentally drop all your rounds and they get mixed together and you don't know which round a was for Rifle A as opposed to Rifle B it's going to be a bit frustrating.

Range pick ups in 30-06 are rarer then pistol or .223 but they are out there. Especially around hunting season. If you wanted to use this brass in your own rifle it would have to be full length re-sized prior to loading.

My advice is to pick up a die set that includes both the FL and the Neck sizing dies. Lee makes 4 die sets that includes both. I have never found a die that didn't do it's job as advertised. Lee is affordable and they have good customer service and a good warranty. , and as you get more into reloading you might get into the micrometer and competition dies. However to start I'd keep it simple and cheap.
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Old November 3, 2013, 12:18 AM   #21
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this one:
https://www.grafs.com/retail/catalog...productId/8002
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Old November 3, 2013, 07:46 AM   #22
Bart B.
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Valornor, what advantages do you think neck sized cases have over full length sized ones in bolt action rifles? And why, too?
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Old November 3, 2013, 08:13 PM   #23
Valornor
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My understanding of the advantage of full length vs over neck sizing is based on what I've read not actually something I've tested. I've done both, but I've never done a side by side comparison. But here are the advantages I've heard that make sense to me.

1) You're not working the brass as much when you neck size. So if you neck size you'll probably be able to use the brass a little longer. Longer brass life is always good, as long as you don't have to worry about using those rounds in other rifles or in Semi autos as they may not reliably chamber.

2) When you fire a round the brass is fire formed to the chamber. Neck sizing reduces the diameter of the neck to allow the bullet to be seated and hold the bullet but does not significantly alter the rest of the case dimensions. The case remains fire formed to the chamber and in theory that would increase accuracy. I believe, this is because the brass has to expand less to create a seal in the chamber. Perhaps it creates a more consistent chamber pressure, or that it allows the bullet to remain more concentric to the bore. I'm not sure on that.

I haven't independently verified any of this, but its what I've gleamed from various reloading books, and from what others have said. The reasoning seems pretty sound, so I pass along the same advice.
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Old November 3, 2013, 09:43 PM   #24
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Firm opinions aside, all our die makers obviously produce quality dies and the proof is they wouldn't ALL be many decades old. So, get a set of standard dies and learn to load with them, any brand. Cost is no valid measure of what a die set can produce, no matter how pretty the outsides are the insides do the work and they are all made to provide SAAMI industry standards ammo. Truly experienced reloaders know individual dies of the same brand vary as much as they do between brands and truly experienced loaders will have variety of brands on their benches.

I say forget any neck sizing or bushing dies. They don't do anything automatic anyway and you'll have to learn a LOT before your loading and shooting skills will exceed what you can do with standard FL and seating dies, if ever; in fact, most reloaders never get anything else.

I do know what neck sizers do and it's not much that's good. Necking rarely helps accuracy in a SAAMI chambered factory rifle and, typically, necking doesn't help case life at all. Most cases fail due to neck splits and conventional neck dies work the metal just as hard as FL dies do.

IMHO, RCBS X dies are a gimmick 'solution' for a case stretch problem you aren't likely to have with a .30-06.. Users are told to trim cases back 30 thou from max length before starting; most of us would toss a case that's stretched that much anyway so the X feature would be meaningless at best - it is NOT a popular seller!

Lyman and Redding have the better expander design for handgun loading. Lee's Factory Crimper is a good die but you don't need much of a crimp on a 9mm anyway and standard seaters also crimp quite well.

I have my favorite 'fancy' rifle dies but I'm not going to telling you what they are because they are costly and would NOT be helpful to you anyway. The happy suggestions to get dies other than the standards come from other old hands telling you what they have come to prefer for themselves after years of reloading. That's not only unhelpful to you but using them would present you with unneeded and unhelpful problems you shouldn't have to deal with now, if ever.
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Old November 4, 2013, 06:39 AM   #25
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Quote:
I do know what neck sizers do and it's not much that's good.
Not much except to insure that the fire-formed, unsized body of the case keeps the round aligned with the bore instead of dropping to the bottom of the chamber.
Quote:
Necking rarely helps accuracy in a SAAMI chambered factory rifle...
I have found the opposite to be true. A full-length sized case cannot align the bullet with the bore and makes for a sloppy fit with the extractor often effecting the alignment also. Furthermore, full-length sizing induces neck run-out. I found by measuring the run-out of several of my hunting rifles with a fired case is near zero. Then when full-length sized, there will be, on average about .004 to .008 run-out ( I have had as much as .017 run-out using RCBS F.L. .257 Roberts dies. With Lee collet dies, the run-out was .004 max, down to .001. .003 or less has long been considered to be the run-out requirement for target quality ammunition.
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