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Redding Pro Series Seating and Crimp Die Problem?


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Got a brand new set of Redding Pro Series dies for .38/.357.

I'm just starting to work up a load on a single stage before going to the progressive. I nabbed my RCBS expander since the Redding set doesn't include one. (They are set up for powder through expander on a progressive press.) So I'm loading mixed brass and the seating die and the crimp die seems to be too tight. Remington brass is no problem, Winchester and Federal works fairly well, but IMI, CBC, SB and especially WCC headstamped brass are a no go. They have a wall thickness that is too thick.

I'm loading .38 Special with Berry's 158 grain round nose double struck. The bullets measure .357" just like they are supposed to.

I checked my seating die and the inside diameter is .3800". If there is any bell whatsoever on the case it will drag going in and clamp down on the bullet while I'm trying to seat it thereby peeling plating of the bullet. The crimp die is even worse. It measures .3800" at the end of the flare and tapers down in size gradually as it goes into the die. This die taper crimps and transitions into a roll crimp. It will swage the case down (with the bullet in it) as it goes into the die. On these rounds I am getting about a .010" longer O.A.L. than the rounds that are going in freely. What this tells me is that it's swaging the bullet, case and all and the O.A.L increases because the bullet metal has to go somewhere.

If these dies are made this way I can forget about loading cast bullets with them. But I'm wondering if they are below tolerance. Does anyone have a set of these dies in .38/.357 caliber to compare measurements? I guess I'm going to call Redding next week, but I thought I'd ask here first.

Edited by Shadowrider
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