Case Sizing Problems

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by bwhunter97, Sep 13, 2009.

  1. bwhunter97

    bwhunter97 New Member

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    Hello, I'm relatively new to reloading, but I have successfully reloaded about 1000 rounds of .223 and .308 ammunition. I'm running into a problem, and I'm frankly not sure what to do about it. I fully size all of my ammunition and don't even own a neck sizing die. I seat it in accordance with the exact instructions, and I still end up with about 5% of my bullets slipping loosely in and out of the cases. It's as if I need to crimp the case slightly to keep the bullet in the correct location. If full sizing to the correct depth doesn't work, then what options do you have left and what equipment do I need? These cases are new in some cases (no pun intended), or shot no more than one previous time.

    Thanks in advance for the advice.
  2. steve4102

    steve4102 Former Guest

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    More info please. What brand of dies, bullets, brass? Are you having the same problem with both cartridges? How did you set up your seating die? Are you lubing the inside of the neck before re-sizing?

    Seems like you may need to polish the expander button down a few thou.
  3. bwhunter97

    bwhunter97 New Member

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    I do have this problem on both bullets. I'm using RCBS dies for both. As far as bullets go, I've used Hornady, Sierra and Nosler and experienced the same on all of them. I used 55 grain and 50 grain on 223 and 125 grain and 165 grain on .308. The loose rounds shoot, but it's obviously not what I want to be using in the field. I am not lubing the inside of the neck, and maybe that's the issue. I'm currently setting the expander on the full sizing die 1/4" below the base of the die and screwing the sizing die into the press until it touches the seat at full extension and then giving it an additional 1/4" turn in accordance with the instruction manual.
  4. steve4102

    steve4102 Former Guest

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    What about the seating die? How are you setting that up?
  5. dardascastbullets

    dardascastbullets New Member

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    Hi BW,

    You haven't indicated if you are using mixed brass. To use the 'process of elimination' it will be necessary to know if you are indeed using only manufacturer of brass. Your answer to this will determine which path to take to further diagnose your problem. I can offer solutions once I know this.

    Standing by for your reply!
  6. muddober

    muddober Active Member

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    What makes no sense to me is that it is happening with only about 5% of your cases and it is with both calibers. Assuming that is the case I can only think of one of two things. One; you are sometimes not fully cycling the cases or two; you have some bad cases because they are springing back. Bad cases in both calibers is highly unlikely, making me believe most likely it is pilot error. The reason I say that is fact that you are having a 95% success rate with both calibers making it highly unlikely that it is your dies or settings. I have had some bullets out of specs but again with two calibers and different manufacturers not likely.

    Ron
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2009
  7. Bindernut

    Bindernut Well-Known Member

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    Like moddober & dardas suggest, I think you'll need to pay attention and segregate those loose neck rounds to see if it's a specific batch of brass or is truly random.

    If you're not cleaning/lubing your case necks, usually that shows up as an excess case length issue instead of an oversize neck. A dirty/dry neck will get stretched back out a bit on the downstroke compared to one that is clean & lubed.
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2009
  8. Freebore

    Freebore New Member

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    I would suggest that you mic the bullets that slip out of the cases for correct diameter compared to those that seat properly. Also I would mic the expander plugs to see if they are too close to the bullets actual diameters.

    What brand bullets?
  9. muddober

    muddober Active Member

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    bwhunter97: Another idea: Take one of the cases that the bullet is loose, dump the powder, set the bullet aside and re-run that same case through the sizer die. Before you re-prime it see if the same bullet that was loose is now tight. If it is tight it is for sure pilot error in your sizing operation. Again I say if 95% are good there cannot be anything wrong with your dies or the diameter of the expander. Dies do not work 95% of the time and then fail 5%, but pilots sometimes do. Again, the fact you are having the same 5% problem with two different calibers and several different bullets, in my mind it sure points the bony figure at you.

    Ron
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2009
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