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case lip getting smashed on seating, and a few other G35 related quest


evilbeef54

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hey guys, i am really new to reloading trying to work up a round for .40 major. I should be getting a chrono in the next few days and trying to come up with some test loads for it. I am using a dillon 550 and just today got a new set of Lee dies for it. I got the lee dies because i wanted the Seating die with the dial on the top to make changing OAL easier, i will get into that question in a min.

This is a new problem i had today with a few rounds on the Lee seating die, the case lip got jacked up like this:

20150505_1835121.jpg

what would be causing this, not enough bell? How much is too much and what is the risk of too much bell?

I also have a few other questions as far as getting some rounds ready for testing with the chrono for the first time. As i said this will be the first time testing loads with a chrono, i only started reloading a few weeks ago, and i am trying to make some good rounds for major. I have seen most people with a Glocl 35 saying that they are using a 1.135 OAL for major. I made about 20 at 1.145 and they all pass the plunk test and all fit nicely into my mags and cycle through the gun with no issues and hold length after cycling, is there any reason NOT to run 1.145 instead of 1.135?

Also when making batches of ammo for testing with the chrono what is the best way to go about it, make 10 of various powder weights changing by .2 each time? shoot them through the chrono and see if they make major?

My stuff i am trying is various case heads, 1.145 OAL, 5.2gr of WSF, various primers (federal Match or win for match ammo), 180 gr berry's (almost out going to xtreme next i know this will change case pressure slightly from the different length bullets) and crimp at .42 Anyone see anything wrong with this. I was going to make about 20 of these and some at 5.0 and 5.4 at min for chrono.

Any other suggestions? Still trying to learn as much as possible here, thanks you guys have helped me so much in such a short time

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Make sure you tighten down your dies with all stations full and the case in the die with the shellplate up. You're not centered and catching the edge of the case. Check that your shellplate is tight. The case make be moving around too much.

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Make sure you tighten down your dies with all stations full and the case in the die with the shellplate up. You're not centered and catching the edge of the case. Check that your shellplate is tight. The case make be moving around too much.

ok will check that again, most of the rounds are coming out ok but some are doing this if the bullet is not PERFECTLY straight up and down, the dillon seating die was pretty forgiving, with that thing the bullet could be at a descent angle and still come out ok. do you think a touch more belling might help reduce this isue or no?

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I don't see how belling would help the case line up any better. Remember that Dillon dies have a more open mouth to help center. I use a Redding competition die without problems. As I said, most problems of this sort are attributable to off center cases or the case slipping out of the shelpllate.

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I don't see how belling would help the case line up any better. Remember that Dillon dies have a more open mouth to help center. I use a Redding competition die without problems. As I said, most problems of this sort are attributable to off center cases or the case slipping out of the shelpllate.

ok great, just wanted to make sure, i never had this issue with the dillon seating die, and only on the Lee if it is not perfectly up and down, just seems innefficent to slow WAY down to get the bullet seated 100% perfect on a progressive. I will defintely re-check with a shell in the plate and up top.

btw any input on the other questions if you have a chance would be awesome!!

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How much bell do you have on the cases?

I am not familiar with a 550, however on a 650 you would also want to check to make sure your platform was tight. If the two bolts that hold down the platform (under the shell plate) become loose, it can make the dies off center (like the dies were loose). You can always call Dillon, they will help you figure it out. Good luck!

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How much bell do you have on the cases?

I am not familiar with a 550, however on a 650 you would also want to check to make sure your platform was tight. If the two bolts that hold down the platform (under the shell plate) become loose, it can make the dies off center (like the dies were loose). You can always call Dillon, they will help you figure it out. Good luck!

thanks, to be honest i dunno how much bell i have, everything i saw talked about setting it visually not by measuring anywhere, visually it is just barely wider than straight wall

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case length varies by maker. to set your bell grab a few cases and measure them. use the shortest one and set the bell with it. that way any longer ones will just get a little more bell,but the shorter one will be ok also.

from the picture it just looks like you need a little more belling.

on the OAL, if it fits in your mag and in your barrel you can use what you want. people used 1.135 because its kinda a standard length like 1.15 if for 9mm.

What is the purposed for your loads? comp shooting? plinking or steel? i usually reference reloading info from book and on the net. it usually gives me a general idea of where i need to be. then i make 5 rounds laddering then .2 of a grain till i get the velocity i am looking for. once i get the velocity i want i make 20 to 50 to do accuracy testing. if accuracy and velocity is good i load up a bunch.

good luck

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I ran into the same issue on an old 550 i have, I discovered it was the powder drop catching tho top of the case occasionally and making a spot just like in your pic. I never did find the root cause other than the case wouldn't line up perfect sometimes. Check to make sure everything is tight is the best advice I can give. My press was 25+ years old, so I know I had a few loose spots.

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Fwiw I've had the 38 sp. sizing die do that on my SDB, which is very forgiving of tight belling and tipped bullets. I don't like losing the brass but if they still fit in the gun i shoot them during warm-up

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20 rounds to test is a lot. 10 rounds is statistically significant enough for what we do. I load 10 of each load and go up by .1 grain increments. This week I loaded with 4.4 hough 4.8gr of my powder (solo 1000) with my 180gr bullets for my g35. Shot 5 strings of 10 rounds over the chrono.

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Thanks for the info guys. I bought this press and entire set up used a few weeks ago and have been practicing with it like crazy. I am trying to get a load for my G35 for limited major. that video was greaat, thanks, i definitely did not have enough bell. I will go ahead with the 1.145 for testing too, thanks, all my other loads have been 1.125

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Ok so i belled it a little more, now about the same as that case in the video, the case now won't even go into the die with out crushing... i did loosen the lock ring and run the handel up with an empty (unbelled) case then re tighten to make sure it was straight, i did install the die in my 550 as per the lee instructions, ran the handel up, screwed the die down until it touched the shell plate, then backed it out 3 turns. did i Need to do something different gor the 550?

I have seen elsewhere people saying to screw it down until it just touches a case?

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Make sure the shell plate is adjusted properly. I'm guessing yours is too loose.

seems tight, any suggestions on checking it on a 550?

My 550 was doing the same thing yours is doing. I realized that the cases were moving around. I tightened the shell plate to the point where it was tight but not tight enough to bind. That seemed to hold the cases more uniformly and the issue was resolved.

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Stupid question--are you sure the correct shell plate, locater pins and powder funnel are being used? When looking at the belled case is the bell even?

On the shell plate, I've found that if you loosen the jam screw, tighten the hold down until the shell plate just drags and back off ever so slightly and then tighten the jam bolt it's about right. You want it easy to turn the shell plate but still snug.

Are you using one shot or some case lube?

Beyond that, maybe get Dillon customer service on the line.

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ok guys, i just pressed out about 150 rounds getting ready for the chrono, here is what i found:

the plate, pins, funnel, etc are all the correct parts, it is belling evenly.

the mouth on the Lee seating die is WAY tighter than the mouth on the dillon die, so i cant bell the case too much or it wont fit, after a lot of back and forth i found a bell that is as big as will fit the seating die with a little clearance, and is not messing up the coating on the berry's or xtreme RNFPs i have.

The issue is still happening once or twice every 10-ish rounds. Since i cant bell it much at all i have to make sure the bullet is 100% straight up and down if not then it can move the case a degree or two which is all it takes for the case lip to hit the side of the die. This issue never happens with the dillon die because it is much wider and tapered at the mouth.

I think i now see what you guys were talking about with the shell plate tension, at first i thought it was tight, it wasnt really wiggling, but i went through and tightened the center bolt down a bit more until the case feed piston couldnt push the shell on to the shell plate and then i slowly loosened it until the shell was able to slide fully in, the plate still rotates smoothly. I pressed another 4 and even tried putting a bullet on not fully 100% straight up and down and i didnt have the issue. Once i am able to chrono this ammo and decide which batch i will press out a few hundred and see if the issue comes back. I really hope this fixed it. I like how the dillon die was easier to run a bit more bell and just kinda plop the bullet on top and keep going quickly, but i also like the dial adjustment on the lee die. If i am still getting this issue with the lee i may just go back to the dillon die or find a different brand of dial in/micrometer seating die.

Thanks for everyone's help, still new and a lot to learn

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ok so i tightened the shell plate, I even took the bell back down to .427 so it wasnt too wide to fit in the tiny little entrance to the lee die, still running into issues every 10 rounds or so, i am getting seriously frusterated with this lee die, had they just flared the entrance to the die or left it a bit wider like the dillon die there wouldnt be an issue. I am about to swap back to the dillon die and return this lee set unless anyone has any other ideas. I hate to give up on it, but it kinda destroys the idea of a progressive when you have to take a LONG time to get the bullet seated PERFECTLY up and down or else you crush the case

edit*** that is it i had enough!!!!! i tried to press out 20 rounds for the chrono tomorrow and destroyed 3 cases in that 20 rounds, and that was taking 20-30 seconds PER ROUND to raise it to the top where the shell first contacts the seating die then wiggling it to get it to slip in if possible, even with the small belling some just wouldnt go. Luckily i bough these through Amazon, these are going back, the opening just isnt big enough to work properly. I switched back to the dillon die and pressed out 100 quickly with zero issues

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I had this exact issue with Lee dies. The issue is the die itself, but you can fix it in 10 minutes with a dremel and a sanding disk.

The inside of the Lee seating die is not smooth. It has milling marks all over. The rough edges catch the brass and bend it over.

You need to take the seating die out. Unscrew the seating stem and remove it from the die. Look inside, and you will see the roughness inside the die.

Chuck up a sanding disk in a dremel. Cut some notches out of the disk so it will fit inside the die, and sand it down until it is smooth.

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40 S&W is where Lee dies shine. Lee's sizer will size closer to the extractor groove and tighter than other brands and because

of this the Powder Through die require a little work. Take the funnel out and using a sized piece of brass turn the lead part of the

Powder Through die down a little. I did mine on a drill press using sandpaper then polishing with compound to a bright finish.

A piece of sized brass should slip over the funnel to the belling section.

While your at it polish the inside of the Powder Through die. I used a small strip of sand paper on an 1/8th rod in a Dremel.

Then a wad of Q-Tips with compound on them. This will help in powder bridging.

Because Lee's case mouth is smaller your press needs to be in time and use case lube. Over the years I have polished all the

Powder Funnels I use with Simichrome Polish. I buy it at a Motorcycle Supply Shop but Brownell's carries it.

While you have it off I also polish the inside of the Powder Measure to a mirror finish and the bars lightly, don't remove

metal on the bars just smooth them up a little. Alex has some well made Powder adjustment Knobs fairly priced on

E Bay. All one piece and you replace your adjustment bolt. Put them in three Powder Measures and I'm very Pleased.

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