What did I do wrong? pics included

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by rglbegl, Jan 28, 2010.

  1. rglbegl

    rglbegl Well-Known Member

    Mar 4, 2004
    Dana point CA
    I got a bulge at the neck.
    As you can see in the pics, the case started expanding at the base of the neck after being run though the seating die.

    lee breech lock loader
    dies were set to lees specs
    sized and deprimed
    powdered (72 grains)
    bullet put through the seating die
    results = see pics

    The overall length is correct, but they obviously wont chamber due to the bulge.

    Is my seating die set too shallow?
    Do I back off the die and tighten the seating screw?
    Or do I close the die down, and loosen the seating screw?

    Last edited: Jan 28, 2010
  2. LurpyGeek

    LurpyGeek Active Member

    Nov 30, 2005
    I believe you just created a new caliber. Sorry I'm not more help.

  3. 312shooter

    312shooter Well-Known Member

    Mar 17, 2008
    Las Vegas NV
    Are you trying to seat and crimp simultaneously??

    I'd start looking there. It looks to me like the crimp is set too excessive, your bullet is still being seated as the mouth is being crimped onto the bullet, collapsing at the shoulder

    I would adjust the die back 2-3 full turns and lock it down, readjust the seater plug to correct OAL. Seat all of your bullets. Then back out the seater plug all the way, adjust the die body down to crimping postion and crimp seperatley.
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2010
  4. carver

    carver Moderator Supporting Member

    I agree. The bullet can be seated, and the brass crimped at the same time if the dies are set up right. I have made a few of these my self.
  5. steve4102

    steve4102 Former Guest

    Jan 27, 2006
    Your seating die is not set up correctly. It is set way to deep into the press.

    The proper way to set up a seating die.
    Raise the ram all the way up, screw the die into the press until it just touches the shell holder, lower the ram, back the die out of the press at least one full turn, tighten the lock ring. Adjust the COAL with the internal seating stem.
  6. dsv424

    dsv424 New Member

    Oct 27, 2008
    Garland, Tx.
    Had the same problem when I started loading .223. Ditto on what steve4102 recommends, it solved my problem.
  7. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

    Feb 3, 2007
    NW Florida
    This is an internal view of your seating die. Notice the circled areas. They are the crimping shoulders. See how they are curved inward? As the cartridge case goes upward, raised by the press’s ram, the bullet nose hits the seating plug and stops, and the case (still going up) gets pushed up around it. As the case keeps rising, the mouth of the case runs into those curved crimping shoulders, and is pushed inward, towards the bullet, crimping the case.

    If you have your die screwed down too far, however, the crimp is pushed in as far as it can go BEFORE you get to the top of your stroke. What happens then is that you are squishing the cartridge between the crimping shoulders at the top and the ram at the bottom. Something has to give. Since the body of the seating die is much larger in diameter than the case is, there is no sideways support to the case. The weakest points on a bottleneck case are the two angles of the shoulder. So, when the case is being squished together, either the top angle will give, and the neck will get pushed down into the case body, or the bottom angle will give, and the case shoulder will bulge outward. Or both angles give, and both of these happen.

    The problem with crimping a bottleneck case with a seating die is ALL of your cases MUST be the same overall length. If you set your crimp up perfectly, with case #1, and case #2 is shorter than case #1, you won’t have enough crimp. If case #3 is longer than case #1, then you have too much crimp, and probably will bulge the shoulder.

    That’s why I heartily recommend buying a Lee Factory Crimp Die. It does not crimp from the top, by rolling the mouth downward. It crimps from the sides, and it does not matter if your cases are not all the same size.

    You set your seating die to just seat, with no crimp, like Steve said. Seat all your bullets. Then put in your FCD and crimp all your bullets. Normally, I would say don’t even crimp. But a 300 WinMag has a fairly heavy recoil, so I think one is needed.

    Attached Files:

  8. rglbegl

    rglbegl Well-Known Member

    Mar 4, 2004
    Dana point CA
    Thank you all for the info.
    I tried it this morning and they are turning out perfect.

    I do have a lee crimping die, and I dont mind the extra step if it will save me from this problem again.
  9. guntech59

    guntech59 New Member

    Dec 1, 2008
    Adirondack foothills
    Just curious...why do you want to crimp them?

    Most people only crimp for tube magazines or semi-autos. (I am assuming that you are loading for a bolt rifle.)
  10. res45

    res45 Member

    Sep 21, 2007
    Is that a Nosler CT bullet? if so you can't use a roll crimp on a non cannelure bullet or you will get the results you posted,you can use the Lee FCD but if you choose to crimp them do not over do it,all you need is a very very light crimp,you should barely even notice it on the case on non cannelure bullets,the Lee die if set to heavy will damage the bullet and destroy your accuracy.

    Try a group of five test rds, with and without and see which one's you the best groupings,some loads like it and some don't.
  11. rglbegl

    rglbegl Well-Known Member

    Mar 4, 2004
    Dana point CA
    Ya, bolt gun.
    The only reason I crimp is . . . . . . well . . . really I dont have a reason.
    Does handling/moving bullets affect them? Like, If I leave them in my trunk for a while, do they need to be crimped?

    Another great response. This is why I posted this question here.
    You guys have been a great help.

    And I am testing powder this time. I have 10 made of 10 different grain weights of powder. (100 total) All were built the same, except the powder. I will start working on other variables in future rounds
  12. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

    Feb 3, 2007
    NW Florida
    Bullets move under recoil. The heavier the recoil, the more likely they are to move.

    When I bought my first gun (18 ounce 357), I bought some reloaded 38 wadcutters. 38 wadcutters ain't got no recoil, so the guy didn't crimp 'em. I had one in the cylinder with 4 Remington 158 grain JSP 357s. After shot #3, the wadcutter bullet had moved so far forward that it was sticking out the front of the cylinder, and would not let it turn.

    In a 223, or maybe even a 30/06, I might not crimp. But that's a belted magnum. He needs to crimp.
  13. howlnmad

    howlnmad Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Nov 26, 2008
    Harriman, Tn
    I hafta agree with alpo, with a belted mag of that size, just a light crimp would be wise. Nothing extreme. Glad you got the seater die figured out. Seat and crimp seperately and use the Lee FCD.
  14. Innovative

    Innovative New Member

    Aug 14, 2009
    rglbegl ......

    I never crimp my 300 Win. Mag. instead I use Redding bushing dies to ensure that bullet tension it correct. Most shooters don't crimp the 300 Win. Magnum.

    - Innovative
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