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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've just acquired a 300 WinMag and need advice on reloading belted brass. I bought Hornady dies, but have been told I need others. Would appreciate facts and advice from those of you who load belted rounds. Thanks
Paperboy98
 

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I haven't loaded for belted rounds before but I've been looking into the same thing as I will be soon. From what I've found, if you're reloading ammo that has already been fired in your gun, you should neck size only or at most bump the shoulder back .001-.002. The reason for this is being the case headspaces off the belt, expansion of the case to take up excess space in a loose chamber can weaken the brass and cause premature case separation just ahead of the belt. If I'm incorrect on this I hope someone with more experience will let me know. As far as dies go, I cant see why you would need any others but maybe someone else does. As long as you have a full length sizer you can back it off a little to just neck size. Or I suppose you could buy just a neck size die.
 

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Belted Magnums should be treated the same as any non-belted bottle necked case. Set up your sizing die so you have the desires shoulder bump, make sure the sized case chambers and extracts with ease and load em up.

If after a few firings the sized case becomes difficult to chamber you can purchase one of these, or toss the brass and start over. I have not found the need for such a die, but others have.

http://www.larrywillis.com/
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Steve, this Collett Die is one of the "extra" items that has been suggested to me. It's a little pricey, but may be worth it. Anyone else have experience with it?
paperboy
 

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It's been about 7-8 years since I had a belted mag, and I found that after about 3-4 loadings the brass couldn't be sized enough to get it to chamber in either gun. About the collet die you refered to, I read a piece in Precision Shooting that they were using it and it extened their brass usage to about 8-10 reloadings, and yes it is pricey. Back when I reloading for the .300 WM it was about $75.00 plus shipping for this die, I'm sure it's much higher now. The belts on the cases are a cheap fix for a poor case design, that spawned from the H&H cases. Back when these case were designed, almost no one reloaded so it wasn't an issue. Wilson make a die that is supposed to return the case to its original size, this might be the ticket for case sizing, instead of the collet die. The Wilson dies however, should be used with and arbor press.

those who beat their guns into plowshares, will plow for those who didn't
 

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reloading belted brass is no different than loading for any other rifle brass. The case belt is where the round headspaces. Belted and rimmed cartridges usually benefit much from necksizing in that it will drastically reduce chamber tolerances and increase accuracy. The same holds true for rimless cartridges that headspace on the shoulder, but generally not to the same great effect.
 

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USMCSpeedy said:

"if you're reloading ammo that has already been fired in your gun, you should neck size only or at most bump the shoulder back .001-.002. The reason for this is being the case headspaces off the belt, expansion of the case to take up excess space in a loose chamber can weaken the brass and cause premature case separation just ahead of the belt."


That is absolutely perfectly correct!

Now, I may be mis-interpreting the phrase "Belted Magnums should be treated the same as any non-belted bottle necked case", but that is not exactly right if you want the brass to last more than one or two reloads.

You can use the full length sizing die but just back it out of the press enough so that you only moves the shoulder back 0.001 to 0.002 inches. That assures the cases fit YOUR chamber (and no one's else) and the brass will not get excessively worked. If you do full length size then the shoulder will move forward with every reloading, stretching the brass just above the belt and you 'll get case head separations eventually (about two reloadings). I went trhough this with my Browning BAR in 7mm mag. To get this right you need:

http://www.midwayusa.com/product/302361/rcbs-precision-mic-300-winchester-magnum

which is a mic to get the case exactly right.

The belt was needed in the first magnum cartridges because the shoulder had such a shallow taper to the shoulder so that the shoulder did not offer a repeatable surface for the case to seat into the chamber. In later days, even when there was good enough shoulder, the belt was used to make the magnum cartridges look unique for advertising purposes.

There are other gun/ammo combos that usually need this same approach . One is the 303 British Enfield. The Brits never intended for the cases to be reloaded so they made the gun chamber sloppy long so even corroded or dirty ammo would drop into the chamber. The result is the same as Magnum cases....They stretch and are only good for a couple of reloadings if you full length resize them. Some rimmed cartridges suffer the same problem but perhaps not as bad as most Magnum cases.

LDBennett
 

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Now, I may be mis-interpreting the phrase "Belted Magnums should be treated the same as any non-belted bottle necked case", but that is not exactly right if you want the brass to last more than one or two reloads.
You are.
 

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steve4102:

So you agree with the process I suggested???

LDBennett
Read post #3 in it's entirety. OK, I'll help.

"Set up your sizing die so you have the desires shoulder bump,"

No different than any other Bottle necked rifle round, it's up the the individual handloader to determine what that Magic Shoulder Bump is. It could be as you say .001-.002 or it could be more, or it could be less. Hell, it could even be set up for a +.001 for a heavy crush fit. Either way, it's no different than a non-belted case.
 

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I personally dont bother with setting the die to bump the shoulder until it starts to chamber hard. then it gets set to just kiss the shoulder. Prolly aint moving it but maybe .001" at most
 

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I was given that collet resizer to use on my belted mag brass. If I remember correctly the factory dimension is .510" and my brass was getting tough at .515". The die returned the brass to .511" and did not appreciably lengthen the brass (maybe .001"). You usually don't have to do that to the brass more than once or twice during it's life.

BTW: I have a Remington 700 LSS in .300 win mag that has never seen anything but Nosler custom brass, and I'm on the 10th reload on some of it, with tight primer pockets and not ONE failure to date. I intermediate size using RCBS "X" dies which work as advertised.
 

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steve4102:

While I'll admit that I use this shoulder bump method on more than just Magnum cartridges, I don't use it on any semi-auto ammo. This shoulder bump method is an advanced reloading technique and is not the way the die manufacturers say to set up dies. Their way, the normal way, MAY bump the shoulder a whole lot more than a couple of thousandths.

We need to differentiate the two ways so as to not totally confuse the new reloader. If the new reloader thinks the shoulder bump method is normal he may find out the hard way that his ammo may not fit another gun of the same caliber. Some of us own more than one gun of the same caliber and if we wish to share ammo between the guns then we have to use the manufacturers way, not the shoulder bump method.

My point is not to argue the fact but to clarify the discussion for those that are unknowing.

LDBennett
 

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From my original post.

"Set up your sizing die so you have the desires shoulder bump, make sure the sized case chambers and extracts with ease and load em up."
 

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steve4102:

"make sure the sized case chambers and extracts with ease"


So how do you do that if you have two different guns that require different settings of the die to get the bump right and you want to share ammo?

The instructions that come with the die set do not discuss bumping the shoulder but to put the die all the way down onto the shell holder. That is the NORMAL way, not bumping the shoulder. The way the instruction for the dies tell you to do it assures that ammo made that way will fit ANY gun. Bumping the shoulder is OK for just one gun usage of the ammo but not for more than one gun if their chambers are at all different (and the odds of two guns having the same chamber dimensions are low).

As I said before I don't want to argue the point, I just want to make it clear to a new reloader that bumping the shoulder is not business as usual. It is an an advanced reloading technique only to be used when the reloader understands the consequences as they apply to the reloader.

LDBennett
 

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Simple.
Set up your sizing die for desired shoulder bump for rifle A, make sure the case chambers and extracts with ease.

Now take a piece of that sized brass and see if it chambers in rifle B. If it chambers, that is your desired bump for both. If it does not, then adjust the die until it does. This new setting will be the desired bump for both.

BTW, here are the instructions for the Dillon rifle dies.

1. Move the handle down to raise the platform.
2. Screw the sizing/depriming die into station
one of your reloader.
3. When the die contacts the shellplate,
back the die off 1/2 turn.
4. Use one lubed rifle case to test your sizing
and headspace. Readjust the die as
needed to achieve proper headspace.


Why is it that whenever a New reloader comes here for advice you treat them like they are ignorant and not capable of understanding simple concepts? You tell them because they don't have a million years of experience like you they should do things the generic way and not the correct way. Only after they have "Experience" like you, should they attempt to do things the correct or advanced way.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Simple.
Set up your sizing die for desired shoulder bump for rifle A, make sure the case chambers and extracts with ease.

Now take a piece of that sized brass and see if it chambers in rifle B. If it chambers, that is your desired bump for both. If it does not, then adjust the die until it does. This new setting will be the desired bump for both.

BTW, here are the instructions for the Dillon rifle dies.

1. Move the handle down to raise the platform.
2. Screw the sizing/depriming die into station
one of your reloader.
3. When the die contacts the shellplate,
back the die off 1/2 turn.
4. Use one lubed rifle case to test your sizing

Gentlemen, I really appreciate all the replies and hope there are more. I am a novice reloader (especially to bottleneck rounds) and all info is helpful. On another forum I read that some allow case stretch to the point that the cartridge actually headspaces on the shoulder rather than the belt. I guess there are as many ideas as there are reloaders. I seek and appreciate the wisdom of you that have loaded many rounds and have learned through experience.
I think I might FL resize with a slight shoulder bump and see how the brass reacts. That might teach me something. I'll be very aware of how the round chambers in my bolt gun.
Please continue to post and discuss. I enjoy and appreciate all of them.
paperboy
and headspace. Readjust the die as
needed to achieve proper headspace.


Why is it that whenever a New reloader comes here for advice you treat them like they are ignorant and not capable of understanding simple concepts? You tell them because they don't have a million years of experience like you they should do things the generic way and not the correct way. Only after they have "Experience" like you, should they attempt to do things the correct or advanced way.
 

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steve4102:

OK. I'll stop this "discussion" now. In the long run we are both right and the argument is over the concept of "normal". By the way my RL550B instruction manuals do not say what yours does...funny that (??).

I'll still continue to simplify my explanation to new reloaders in order to keep them safe and to avoid a frustrating reloading experiences for them. You can treat them any way you choose.

LDBennett
 

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Those are instructions for Dillion Rifle dies. Other rifle die manufactures instructions don't seem to say that.

Like I said we are both right. It is only "normal" that is in question. Dillion is but one manufacturer of rifle dies. The others make no references to correct headspace. You will have to admit that if you set the sizing die onto the shell holder (or equivalent) the resultant ammo will fit anything. Whereas if you use the correct head space for one gun it may not work out for another gun. And then you have compromise again.

On guns for which I have a dedicated ammo supply for only that gun and it is a bolt gun, it gets the correct headspace treatment. For semi-autos, pumps, and lever guns they get ammo where the sizing die is seated onto the shell holder (or equivalent). I only have one belted magnum cartridge that I reload for and it gets the correct headspace treatment because I only have the one gun in that caliber and two or less reloads out of one case is avoided that way.



LDBennett
 
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