What went wrong? (pictures inside)

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by The Joker, Dec 5, 2012.

  1. The Joker

    The Joker Member

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2012
    Messages:
    118
    I recently made this 158GR .357 Magnum loads using a single stage press. I did notice that it was a little harder then usual to press on the lever but it was still making the rounds and they seemed ok.
    I made a batch of 50 but some of them I was able to press on the bullet and it just seated deaper into the case. I never seen or had this happen to me. Please elaborate.

    Press used was Lee Single stage using their carbide dies labeled for 38 special but it said it will do .357 magnum. I have used these dies for .38 before but this is the first time for .357. Also I do want to clearify I did reset the seating die and its probably name the same setting as I used for .38

    Sorry for the pictures being a little dark but these were all able to just seat so low
    [​IMG]


    Compared to a normal one that came fine.
    [​IMG]
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2012
  2. woolleyworm

    woolleyworm Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2009
    Messages:
    4,945
    Location:
    SW Fort Worth
    I would first check sizing dimensions with calipers. Then check your crimp, it appears there isn't much if any crimp to hold the bullet in place.
  3. woolleyworm

    woolleyworm Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2009
    Messages:
    4,945
    Location:
    SW Fort Worth
    Is there crud build up in your seating die?
  4. The Joker

    The Joker Member

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2012
    Messages:
    118
    How do I check sizing dimensions.
    I actually never used a crimp die in any of my loads.

    I will check for crud in the die.
  5. woolleyworm

    woolleyworm Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2009
    Messages:
    4,945
    Location:
    SW Fort Worth
    Use calipers to check the OD (outside diameter) after you run the case through your sizing die. Compare to the case specs in your manual. 38/357 OD should be .379"

    You will need to crimp, you don't want any bullet set-back to occur.
  6. The Joker

    The Joker Member

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2012
    Messages:
    118
    Not trying to start an argument but I never used a crimp die before and I never had any issues. Is there anything particular about a .357 mag that needs it?
  7. streetbob

    streetbob Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2012
    Messages:
    406
    Location:
    Gulf Coast, Texas
    It looks like you may have set the expander die a little farther out then you usually set it and you don't crimp your case mouth, so the bullets are loose in the mouth. You just need to get a crimp die and check your c.o.a.l. with a mic, if they are on the money then crimp them, if not then pull them out a little with a bullet puller reseat the bullet and crimp it.
  8. streetbob

    streetbob Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2012
    Messages:
    406
    Location:
    Gulf Coast, Texas
    Every round should have some sort of crimp on it, rather it be a taper crimp for semi autos or a roll crimp for revolvers. They need the crimp to build pressure before being shot from the barrel.
  9. ejkoechling

    ejkoechling Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2012
    Messages:
    1,160
    Location:
    Imperial, MO
    I agree with Streetbob. I think alll rounds should be crimped
  10. 76Highboy

    76Highboy Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2012
    Messages:
    8,658
    If I am reading your O.P. right, this is what I am thinking. You set your expander die up to expand the brass, and all was fine there. But, upon running 50 rounds some of the brass was slightly longer then the rest of the batch. Therefore they were expanded a bit larger which enable you to "press the bullet in" with your finger. Then, when the cartridge was in the upward motion going into the seater die the bullet rubbed the side of the die and was easily seated deeper then the rest.

    To find out if this is the case, measure the case of the C.O.L, and then measure the case of the shorter cartridge and you should see that the shorter cartridge will have a longer piece of brass then the one with the C.O.L.

    That is what I am thinking.
  11. 76Highboy

    76Highboy Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2012
    Messages:
    8,658
    Also, if you don't crimp those rounds and they are magnum loads you are risking the bullets being forced deeper into the casings (do to recoil)causing presser to be too high and that is a huge risk. I say crimp them. Light crimps for light loads, and a heavier crimp for full house loads.
  12. JLA

    JLA Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2007
    Messages:
    18,269
    Location:
    Heart Of Texas
    Looks like youre using 9mm projectiles. whats the bullet DIA.?

    .38 and .357 need .357" - .358" to have proper neck tension. 9mm bulleta re .355" - .356" so even crimped they will easily push back into the case.
  13. aa1911

    aa1911 Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2010
    Messages:
    3,211
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest
    JLA, that was gonna be my first question; are the bullets correct?

    Ha! snooze you lose...

    a light crimp should be applied, don't need to get crazy but it will help you out
  14. todd51

    todd51 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2009
    Messages:
    3,008
    Location:
    Central, Ohio
    Just a hint to keep from having to change your die setting when switching from .38spl. to .357mag. I made a large washer that compensates for the difference in case length between the two. Works fine as long as you are using the same bullets. The case on a .38spl. is 1.115 inches and the .357mag. is 1.29 inches so the washer is 0.135. Don't know if this meats the accepted good practice but it works for me and saves a lot of adjustments.

    Josh you may have hit the nail on the head.

    Attached Files:

  15. JLA

    JLA Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2007
    Messages:
    18,269
    Location:
    Heart Of Texas
    Thats a very food idea todd. One method Id use myself if I loaded .38 spec.
  16. woolleyworm

    woolleyworm Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2009
    Messages:
    4,945
    Location:
    SW Fort Worth
    It works very well, RCBS at one point in time used to include a washer in their 38/357 die sets. not sure if they still do. I have an 1/8" washer that came with my set.
  17. aa1911

    aa1911 Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2010
    Messages:
    3,211
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest
    The washer trick is genious!

    I don't ever load 38's any more but if I ever needed/wanted to, that would be a great way to leave my dies in place and adjusted for the magnum.
  18. The Joker

    The Joker Member

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2012
    Messages:
    118
    I appreciate all the feedback.
    Got a few more things to ad.
    From what I understand about crimping it is done right after the bullet is seated? What is the difference between the type of crimp because some of the bullets came out lower so crimping it wouldnt fix the issue because the bullet would of already been seated before attempting the crimp.
    I saw one post above where someone mention I might of made the expansion too big. If I was to back it up some would it fix it? When I put in the expansion die I pushed the rod down so that the bottom of the die would touch the top of the bullet seater and I belive I back it up either 1 or 3 turns (whichever is said in the instructions I always mix up the expander and the seater dies so I always need to double check)


    I do appreciate everyones feedback I hope to get this cleared up soon
  19. Bindernut

    Bindernut Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2007
    Messages:
    3,143
    Location:
    ND, USA
    Yup, I've got a washer in both of my .38/.357 die sets. Couldn't find exactly the right thickness so I spent a bit of time working them on a stone although a 1/8" (0.125") would probably work fine.

    I agree with Josh. Are these .355" or .356" bullets
    Not often you seen a round nose FMJ .357" bullet. BUT...I know they do make em.

    (edit...on second look, these look like lead round nose instead of jacketed. Either way, is the diameter correct?)
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2012
  20. 76Highboy

    76Highboy Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2012
    Messages:
    8,658
    Joker, measure the diameter of the brass at the mouth, then set the seat die so it expands the diameter .001" and no more. I don't go by the turns of the die, I measure my brass with a caliper.

    I hope were helping you.
Similar Threads
Forum Title Date
The Ammo & Reloading Forum help with what went wrong w/this cartridge Jul 15, 2014
The Ammo & Reloading Forum Went to Cabelas Apr 28, 2013
The Ammo & Reloading Forum went to gun show today,,,, Mar 10, 2013
The Ammo & Reloading Forum So I went shopping today..... Feb 20, 2013
The Ammo & Reloading Forum Federal primer went off Jun 19, 2012

Share This Page