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Old May 23, 2022, 12:26 PM   #1
Shadow9mm
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Roll crimp die?

so I am looking for some roll crimp dies for 38/357 and 44spl/44mag.

I have Hornady dies and have had problems with some 44mag bullets starting the crimp too early and shaving lead and not seating to the proper depth.

I had a 38spl get stuck on the crimp ring in my die today. Had to use pliers to get it out and broke the retaining clip.

I have and use the Lee factory crimp dies to ensure the round will feed. But they don't provide a good deep roll crimp in my experience and I don't use the crimp feature except on 9mm.

I have a progressive press, and adding a separate crimp would be an easy thing to do, no extra steps. Is there a good go to die for a solid roll crimp for revolver/lever gun rounds??
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Old May 23, 2022, 12:36 PM   #2
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I've had good luck with the Redding Profile Crimp dies. One of the problems with roll crimps is forming a heavy crimp without the sharp turn at the corner of the crimp pulling brass away from the sides of the bullet just below the crimp. The Redding die addresses this by starting the crimp as a taper crimp that terminates in a roll profile. The taper keeps the wall of the case below the crimp trapped while the sharper roll is being formed, so a hard crimp can be achieved without the lifting problem and it's resulting bulge and lowered bullet contact.

If an actual roll crimp isn't strictly a requirement, you may want to take a look at the Lee Collet Style crimp dies for the magnum pistol rounds. These impress a narrow ring into the brass at the case mouth.
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Old May 23, 2022, 01:26 PM   #3
Shadow9mm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unclenick View Post
I've had good luck with the Redding Profile Crimp dies. One of the problems with roll crimps is forming a heavy crimp without the sharp turn at the corner of the crimp pulling brass away from the sides of the bullet just below the crimp. The Redding die addresses this by starting the crimp as a taper crimp that terminates in a roll profile. The taper keeps the wall of the case below the crimp trapped while the sharper roll is being formed, so a hard crimp can be achieved without the lifting problem and it's resulting bulge and lowered bullet contact.

If an actual roll crimp isn't strictly a requirement, you may want to take a look at the Lee Collet Style crimp dies for the magnum pistol rounds. These impress a narrow ring into the brass at the case mouth.
I considered the lee collet crimp dies. however as they are only for 44mag and 357 mag, and would not work for 44spl or 38spl they did not seem like the best option.
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Old May 23, 2022, 04:05 PM   #4
ShootMeStraight
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I use Lee Factory Crimp Dies for 357 Mag and 44 Mag, they are designed to be used with 38 Special and 44 Special as well.
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Old May 23, 2022, 04:09 PM   #5
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Same, love the Lee Factory Crimp die for 357 and if you crimp and one is a little too long you dont have to worry about crushing the case. Uniform trim length isnt as important.
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Old May 23, 2022, 09:37 PM   #6
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I don't use Lee dies if anything else is available, and it normally is. A personal preference.

The Lyman dies I got for .357 and .44 mag back in the 70s have a great roll crimp feature. You can adjust them for any amount you want, from no crimp to crushing the bullet & case too much. You need to know what you're doing, and case length uniformity really really helps (and is a virtual necessity if you're using anything but a single stage press and have experience with the proper "feel".

I have some RCBS dies (.45 Colt) and while they will give a good heavy crimp (when correctly set) the crimp shoulder on mine seems "sharp" and will sometimes cut a thin ring of brass off the case in the process of crimping. Hasn't ever been a problem, but I feel the Lyman die to be superior for crimping.

You should be able to pick up some older, used Lyman dies fairly cheaply, and unless horribly abused, the seater should work fine as a crimp die in your progressive, ONCE you get the adjustment correct.

I recommend using a factory round for the initial setting. Round in the shellholder, ram all the way up, screw the die body down (seating stem removed/backed way out) until you get firm contact with the factory case. Then remove the round, turn the die body down about a tenth of a turn and load a test round to see if its enough crimp for your needs. If not, or too much, adjust the die body up or down a bit and try again.

Again, uniform cases matter, and while this trial and error process cannot be avoided, once you get it set where you want it, lock it down and you'll be good for years....

Personal opinion: forget Lee, and also you don't NEED new, you need serviceable, and lots of used stuff is still serviceable and cheaper than new.
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Old May 23, 2022, 10:29 PM   #7
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For straight wall handgun cartridges prefer the Redding profile crimp.
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Old May 23, 2022, 10:45 PM   #8
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I was going to suggest the Lee collet style crimping dies, but then I saw that that has been suggested and rejected. I'm not certain they won't work on the shorter cases, though. You might contact Lee and ask them. If all else fails, Lee can probably make a shorter version for you. I have a Lee collet crimp die that I bought specifically for loading .44 Colt Original -- which uses a heeled bullet and can't be crimped with a conventional roll crimp die. I'm pretty certain the .44 Colt Original die is the .44 Magnum die, but I don't know if it has been customized.
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Old May 24, 2022, 06:07 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unclenick View Post
I've had good luck with the Redding Profile Crimp dies. One of the problems with roll crimps is forming a heavy crimp without the sharp turn at the corner of the crimp pulling brass away from the sides of the bullet just below the crimp. The Redding die addresses this by starting the crimp as a taper crimp that terminates in a roll profile. The taper keeps the wall of the case below the crimp trapped while the sharper roll is being formed, so a hard crimp can be achieved without the lifting problem and it's resulting bulge and lowered bullet contact.

If an actual roll crimp isn't strictly a requirement, you may want to take a look at the Lee Collet Style crimp dies for the magnum pistol rounds. These impress a narrow ring into the brass at the case mouth.
This, I love the Lee collet crimp die. It’s easy on brass, more tolerant of case length variance, and so easy to use. I’ve never tried a taper crimp die but can see how it too would work well.
Oops my bad, I see upon rereading you mentioned both special and magnums.
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Old May 24, 2022, 10:25 AM   #10
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44 amp, I like the old Lyman dies also. These are from same era.
I put a Redding Micrometer seating stem in my Lyman seat/crimp die and it work great.
Seating stem is same length and both are 1/2x20 thread.
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File Type: jpg Redding mic on Lyman seating die.jpg (77.6 KB, 13 views)
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Old May 24, 2022, 10:35 AM   #11
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An old friend of the family taught me to do taper crimp, I guess you guys have been calling it profile crimp. I have had a lot of good luck even with stout 300 WSM rounds not budging in their cases under recoil. They don't dig into the copper of the jacket, as I do not have cannelured bullets for roll crimps. Surface area over a rolled in ring is my preferred method. I know you hacked up Lee dies, but I swear by mine. They have not failed me yet.
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Old May 24, 2022, 11:56 AM   #12
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Quote:
But they (Lee Factory Crimp Die) don't provide a good deep roll crimp in my experience
I have the opposite experience. I am very pleased with the way the Lee FCD roll crimps my 38/357/44 ammo.

I do things a little differently though. I have my progressive press (Dillon 550 BL) set to seat; then taper crimp; then roll crimp (FCD), if applicable.

Most of my ammo is non-cannelured and plated. So I stop at the taper crimp. The Lee FCD is backed out and doesn't come into play. If I'm loading cannelured JHP's however, I then bring the FCD into play to finish with a roll crimp.

Unclenick seems to like the Redding Profile Crimp Die. So I wouldn't hesitate trying one if I wasn't completely satisfied with my current set up.
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Old May 24, 2022, 11:58 AM   #13
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RCBS , CH4D and Lyman all have traditional , "old school" roll crimp dies that will roll a crimp into a crimp groove .
The Die called Profile Crimp Die is a roll crimping die with a tighter "roll" in the profile it isn't a taper crimp .
Finding a roll crimp die is like pulling teeth ...they only want to show you the Lee Factory Crimp Die ... but just the standard seating / crimping die that comes with a standard die set will have a roll crimp in 38/357 and 44 spc/44 mag. Adjust the thing so that it crimps without seating the bullet any deeper .
The best way to eliminate shaving is seat (no crimp) in one step then move to next die and crimp (no seating) in the second step ...
You may have to order the die from factory ...
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Old May 24, 2022, 01:21 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gwpercle
The Die called Profile Crimp Die is a roll crimping die with a tighter "roll" in the profile it isn't a taper crimp .
As I explained in my post, it's really a sort of hybrid crimp profile. The limitation of the conventional roll crimp die is that if you apply too much crimp pressure it can do what is shown in exaggerated form in the third position below:



Redding doesn't explain it in their catalog entry, but the way the Profile Crimp achieves a stronger roll crimp without bulging the case as the third image position shows is by having a slight taper below the roll crimp profile that constrains the sides of the case. The taper is not meant to serve as a taper crimp on its own, though. It just narrows enough to constrain the sides of the case from bulging.

If you knew all cases would have the exact-same wall thickness and every bullet made for the cartridge was the exact same diameter, you could ream and hone a conventional roll crimp die to achieve the same thing, albeit with a little rubbing as the case and bullet slid into place. But, of course, you don't have that kind of consistency, so the taper in the Redding die works around that.
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Old May 25, 2022, 08:03 PM   #15
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If you don't like the crimp from the Lee FCD, it is likely because you aren't testing your crimp's pull strength, and relying instead on "looks". The only crimp stronger than the FCD is the Lee Collet. Neither is sensitive to case length, but the Lee Collet is strong enough to deform bullets if adjusted too tight.

Joe @realguns did an extensive test of crimp solutions many years ago - even made a bullet pull force measurement device. The end result was that the FCD and Collet dies produced the strongest crimps.

I crimp for heavy 45-70 in a hard-kicking levergun and 44mag in a SW329pd.

Imho of course.
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Old May 27, 2022, 02:02 AM   #16
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I don't need the strongest crimp possible, or a special die to do it, I've always been able to do a strong enough crimp with the standard seating dies I use (lyman and RCBS, primarily).

And, I do load heavy .45-70 and .458 Win Mag.

I don't know if the newer dies have it, but the old Lyman .45acp die had a roll crimp shoulder in it. When loading acp you adjusted the die so you didn't use it, but it was there, if you needed it, in order to load .45 Auto Rim brass for revolvers.
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Old May 27, 2022, 08:42 AM   #17
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Some unusual situations arise. A friend of mine got a titanium snubby in 45 Colt that can't shoot 250-grain bullets, including commercial loads, without getting bullet pulling that jams the cylinder rotation. And this is a big guy with big hands and about 300 lbs behind the gun. He was stuck with 200-grain bullet loads in that gun until he got a Profile Crimp die.

The same might well apply to anyone limp-wristing a magnum revolver, or who, for some physical reason, can't get a firm enough grip or can't put enough weight behind it.

In any case, I like the Profile Crimp Die, not so much for the need of a stronger crimp, but because the slight taper preceding the roll crimp means I don't have to roll it quite as hard to get the same amount of metal hanging onto the bullet. That extends case mouth reloading life a bit when shooting lead bullets with a crimp groove. I've not compared the result in jacketed bullets, as the case mouth would press against the cannelure no less hard, so I'm not expecting it would make a case life difference there.
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Old May 27, 2022, 11:51 AM   #18
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A friend of mine got a titanium snubby in 45 Colt that can't shoot 250-grain bullets, including commercial loads, without getting bullet pulling that jams the cylinder rotation.
Just out of curiosity, did you friend's snubby come with information warning him about its failure to be able to use 250gr bullets???

When you are in a special class situation, you have to do special, often unusual things in order to get satisfactory results. I get that. You don't run a dragster on 87 octane regular gas (with 10% ethanol) that you buy at your local station. But, its also fair to expect the guys who build and sell you that dragster to TELL YOU that.

From the day they came out, Desert Eagle has told everyone not so shoot lead bullets from their pistol. They are very clear about that, and why. Yet some people don't listen, and wind up paying for repair (replacement barrel assy -NOT cheap) out of their own pocket as the cost of their ignorance or foolishness.

I've got Desert Eagles in .357 and .44 Magnum, as well as T/C Contender barrels in those (and many other) calibers. I don't have to run crimped ammo in those guns, but I do, because I also have revolvers and crimping is part of my loading process for them, and I don't change that to make uncrimped ammo for the DE or the Contender. I could, but see no point, as properly crimped rounds don't hurt anything.

I'm sure your friend had good reasons to buy a titanium snubby in .45 Colt. Just seems to me that if you make a gun that won't work right with the standard bullet weight for the round, one that has been in use AS the standard bullet weight for nearly 150 YEARS, you should make an extra effort to inform potential customers of that, PRIOR to sale.

If you want to buy and use a special die for roll crimping, go ahead, that's your business. My needs have always been met by using the crimp built into the standard seating dies of my die sets.

I HAVE bought separate dies for TAPER crimping 9mm & .45ACP, but that is a different subject.
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