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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I picked up a Pacific DL-155 for pretty cheap so I figured I may as well give it a try. after lots of research I found out how to work the thing and get it all adjusted. I tried some federal Top Shot shells and they turned out like total crap. I think they are supposed to be some form of a spiral crimp. oh well, I'll throw them out and stick with AA shells. I only ruined 5 AAs before I got it tuned and working good. changing things is such a major PITA I am not sure I want to try it. if it works, stick with it.

anyway, here is a pic of my final results. I threw in a HighBoy special round to show the spiral crimp on the TopShot that I can't get to work.

now I just need to determine if there is any savings to be had in loading my own
 

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TFFWPP President
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
oh, forgot my recipe.

12g 2 3/4 AA shells, WAA12 wads, .435 bushing throwing 17gr. of Clays, 1 1/8 oz. of #8, and CCI 209 primers. thank you Hodgdon.com and some old books with the powder bushing charts. I did verify the powder throw over 12 subsequent loads.
 

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I think im either obsessed or nuts but ever since this "crisis" Ive bought a Dillon SDB and a bunch of reloading stuff for that and now put a Lee 12ga press and a few things in a shopping cart. I really need to take a breath with this stuff but I want to learn everything I can as far as reloading. If I had this much passion for other things I'd be a rich man!
 

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I've got a 366 press in .410, it's a bear to adjust and get going but it's solid. Have not used that flavor in 12g.

Unfortunately, you actually are spending more money to reload for target shells anyway but I still do as I love to reload. Used reclaim shot for cheapest bang.

Now buckshot and other specialty loads, you can still save a ton.

It's mostly trial and error on each adjustment, I run shells through one at a time careful to not dump powder or shot (I use a different color empty shell to catch the powder/shot if I'm not using that station). biggest things to adjust are the wad pressure ram (and shot tube on most), and the crimp for depth. Most crimping problems once adjusted correct have to do with the load itself, adjust powder/shot and change wads as needed to find a good load.

Top guns have a little more room in them than the AA's do or Rem Nitros/Premier, most of the cheapo hulls are thinner and have more room. (and don't crimp as well or last long)

top guns are great though, they crimp very well and hold up surprisingly long, it's all I'm using lately for skeet.

Remington and federal are the two hulls I try to use, Winchester is now all garbage. Fiocchi's are great also.
 

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those AA's look like a 6 point crimp, were you using an 8 point crimp starter? just curious.

that top gun looks perfect BTW
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
no, they're 8 point crimp.

I noticed the crimp is a little flat and almost even with the end. is this a sign of too little wad pressure? (50 pounds)
 

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You don't need a lot of wad pressure. I have a bout 10 lbs. Your final crimp die needs to be lowered. Federal hulls are straight wall and AA's are tapered base. They use different wads also.
 
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