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Old November 26, 1999, 05:28 AM   #1
Senior Member
Join Date: October 9, 1998
Location: Ohio USA
Posts: 7,945
****DO NOT USE MY LISTED LOADS IN YOUR GUN!!!*** Goes without saying for 99.99% of the people here, but still worth repeating as I found out.

I bought a Lee factory crimp die thinking that my crimp wasn't tight enough as per the other 2 threads. Thursday morning I loaded up some rounds and headed out. The gun used for both is the Winchester Trapper .44 Mag.

Load 1 (six rounds)
New RP Rem primed brass
18.2 grain 2400
240 gr cast lead SWC
Lee Turret press/using Factory Crimp Die

Result: Signs of overpressure ie:flattened primer. The book (really the website) lists the max load some 2 grains higher, but with the factory crimp, even this shortened load is showing signs of being too hot. Good thing I reduced it from the load I used before. Recoil was also up there with the factory stuff, so I know I was at or near a level I didn't want for a plinking load.

Load 2
New RP Rem primed brass
9 gr Unique
240 FMJ
Lee Turret press/using Factory Crimp Die

What was that about Unique being dirty? Zero unburned powder, but a fair amount of soot. Very accurate. So accurate in fact, that this is the load I am after. Problem is the FMJ bullet. I wanted something cheaper like a cast lead, but this is such an accurate load I hate to stop using it. I may just grin and bear it as far as the extra cost of the FMJ goes. Mild accurate load that should do everything I want. Recoil did seem a bit more than the same load without the Lee FCD, but it's hard to tell.

Conclusion: Reduce loads when changing components. Any component, including dies. I know it goes without saying, but as above, it is worth repeating. I'm not sure if the switch from CCI primers to the Rem primers or the Lee FCD caused the difference. Maybe both did. One thing I did observer though was a lack of unburned powder. This leads me to believe the Lee FCD did a good job of getting a nice tight crimp, and letting the powder get all burned up just right. Well worth the $12.95 I paid for it. I roughly figure my cost per shot, using the FMJ, and the new primed brass, at $.22 to $.25 per shot. 'Bout half of the cost of factory JHP. Reusing the brass should cut that figure down for future loadings. Fun factor of loading your own accurate load is priceless though.

Equipment failure:
Yep, the handle came off the Lee press during this session and the little old hand held Lee Auto Prime is on it's last leg(I also loaded some .38's and had the Auto prime go during that process). I see a Dillon 550B in my future. No regrets over the $$ spent on the Lee stuff though, it did pay for itself in $$ and experience. FWIW, I would recommend someone just starting to go Dillon though, unless they plan to do a very small amount of reloading.
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