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Old September 15, 2010, 11:02 AM   #1
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.357 Sig, RCBS Standard dies: Do I need to Lube the cases???

Title pretty much says it all. I'm starting to reload .357 Sig for my P226. Do I need to lube the brass since the dies are not carbide, just a standard 2 die set??

My guess is yes, so the 10 test rounds I loaded last night were lubed, and all went fine.

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Old September 15, 2010, 11:13 AM   #2
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Yes. But a TWO die set? How do you bell the cases? MY sig die set is a standard handgun 3 die set from lee. It has the expander/bell die second in-line in the loading process.

An option that some are using is a 40 S&W carbide die is used to size the body, then the sig FL die is used to size the tiny/short neck. That eliminates the need to lube the whole case.

I simply spray lube the whole case, load them on my Dillon 650, then tumble the finished round, to remove the lube.
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Old September 15, 2010, 11:30 AM   #3
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I use a 40SW carbide die to size the body of the case first. Then I run the brass thru the 357 Sig die. That means I don't have to lube the cases at all as the body has already been sized. If you don't have a Lee factory crimp die, it sure helps in keeping the bullets where they belong. But if you don't have a 40 SW carbide die, you'll need to lube the cases.
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Old September 15, 2010, 11:35 AM   #4
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The standard RCBS .357 SIG die set is what I use, and it is indeed only two dies. The case is essentially a miniature bottleneck rifle case, so an expander isn't really necessary if you're loading jacketed bullets. And, like rifle cases, you do need to lube them. I guess you'd need to add an expander if you wanted to load lead, but I've never tried that with the .357.

I'm one of those who does the preliminary resizing with my .40 S&W carbide die, then uses the .357 SIG sizing die to do only the neck, which doesn't require lubing cases. I can fit everything in my progressive press, so there's really no additional work involved. Even if I only had a single stage, I'd still do it that way, accepting the extra step to avoid dealing with lube.
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Old September 15, 2010, 11:37 AM   #5
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I'm using the Dillon carbide sizing die and I lube them very lightly (spray a little squirt of oneshot in the cap and wave the cap over the brass). I just got the setup to do what Loader9 suggests but haven't set it up yet. Frankly, The slight additional step of the lube and the quick tumble doesn't add that much time to reloading these rounds for me. BTW, I tumble after they are loaded to remove the little bit of residual lube - maybe 30 minutes. I still put out the volume I need without much more time than .45 ACPs.
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