Lee dies & loc-tite

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by .308 shooter, May 22, 2009.

  1. .308 shooter

    .308 shooter Member

    May 3, 2008
    I just purchased Lee dies on .40s&w. Not my first choice, but everything was sold out and I'm very impatient.
    The locking nut on the Lee dies don't lock in place like some of the others. Once I get my settings set, anyone see any problems with using lock tite to lock my settings in place? I eventually plan on replacing these with Hornady dies anyway.

  2. carver

    carver Moderator Supporting Member

    Can't say about the .40, but I reload all my pistol ammo on Lee equipment, and have never had to use locktight. You should have a locking nut on your die for .40 cal., but like I said I don't reload that cal. All of my dies have one.

  3. LDBennett

    LDBennett Well-Known Member

    Dec 20, 2003
    Hesperia, CA

    If it is the lock nut that holds the die to the press just replace the Lee one with one from RCBS or anyone else's that uses a conventional allen screw to hold that adjustment. This is another one of Lee's cost saving features.

    If it is the central rod (that deprimes) that keeps slipping then if you really bear down on its tightening nut, it will stop moving in use. It's really a collet and tightens dramatically with increased torque to that nut.

    Locktite is probably not the answer.

    I have several of these Lee dies and they are OK and make acceptable ammo. If you get it working to your satisfaction replacing it with a better one is not really required unless it proves troublesome or makes bad ammo (which it most likely will not do). Replace it only if it rusts (like some of my Lee dies did) or wears out.

  4. GBertolet

    GBertolet Member

    Feb 24, 2009
    I have trouble with the lock rings also on my Lee collet sizer dies. They don't stay put, so I have to readjust most every time I use them. I finally tossed the Lee lock rings and replaced them with a RCBS, problem solved!
  5. .308 shooter

    .308 shooter Member

    May 3, 2008
    It seems the easiest answers always escape me. Replacing with another nut from another brand is brilliant!!!! Thanks for the reply - problem solved!!
  6. techoca

    techoca New Member

    Nov 3, 2008
    Drill and tap the nut and install a set screw yourself.
  7. 312shooter

    312shooter Well-Known Member

    Mar 17, 2008
    Las Vegas NV
    Good luck drilling and tapping aluminum, it will work until you tighten down that screw! Thats the biggest turn off to me about Lee dies, the locking nut is aluminum (or at least a blend of non-ferrous crap metal) RCBS, Lyman, Redding, Hornady all make their locking rings as they should be!
  8. Lotsdragon

    Lotsdragon New Member

    Apr 5, 2009
    Potosi, Mo
    Have used Lee dies for years and never had any problem with any of them.
  9. Bindernut

    Bindernut Well-Known Member

    Oct 24, 2007
    ND, USA
    On the Lee dies that I have, I've replaced all of those aluminum/o-ring or the older steel/o-ring locking rings with the Hornady split-collar type. You can get those lock rings fairly reasonably priced...Midway usually puts em on sale every few months for about $4 a piece.

    Actually I've done that with most of my RCBS dies too. I've had as much trouble with keeping that little brass setscrew on the RCBS rings tight as those pesky Lee o-rings.
    Last edited: May 22, 2009
  10. tim.sr

    tim.sr New Member

    May 4, 2009
    Drill and tap the nut and install a set screw yourself.
  11. woolleyworm

    woolleyworm Well-Known Member

    Feb 23, 2009
    SW Fort Worth
    as far as your original question goes, I don't see a problem with using loc-tite, I'd use the blue 242 and sparingly. I like the idea of replacing the lock nut better, faster and cheaper, that loc-tite is expensive stuff.
  12. gdmoody

    gdmoody Moderator Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2007
    Athens, Georgia
  13. BigJakeJ1s

    BigJakeJ1s Member

    Oct 12, 2007
    The old RCBS lock rings were cross-bolt type before they went to the set screw type (save cost?). You can still find them occasionally at gun shows for a buck or two apiece. They are similar to the Forster cross-bolt rings, made of aluminum, but the old RCBS ones have allen head clamp screws, instead of phillips head on the Forsters. Properly designed and manufactured, an aluminum lock ring has plenty of strength.

    Hornady and Lyman also make cross-bolt lock ring. For some reason Lyman includes set-screw type lock rings on their dies, but sells cross-bolt rings separately. The Hornady lock rings are the only cross-bolt rings with wrench flats.

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