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.223 SB die not cutting it


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It doesn't matter whether I use a single stage or 550 press, too many of my .223 cases (once fired mixed head stamps) fail the plunk test in a case gauge after sizing. It's aggravating to say the least so I'm thinking about a Case Pro for .223 only.

 

As I said, I'm using mixed head stamps but the issue remains even if I select cases by brand. I get about 15% plunk failures. I've resorted to sizing / decapping, plunk test, discard failed cases, prime and go forward so in reality I'm thinking that case loss is in the long run less of a hassle and expense than a case sizer?

 

I don't shoot a LOT of .223 (maybe a thou a year) and do not have any issues with .357 Sig, .357 mag, .40, 10mm, .45, .45 Colt, or .45 WM so additional die kits are not an issue nor is production / speed. 

 

My Q's are for other .223 loaders who have used the Case Pro.

 

It would be a bummer to roll the cases if it isn't 100% reliable, what's the consensus on the issue?

 

Over the years, rather than pulling those loaded rounds that failed before getting somewhat better results with the SB die, I just saved them in a baggie. Can the Case Pro safely roll a loaded .223?

 

Is the half mounting kit needed? Or can it be mounted to the bench and be run without any of the feed tubes?

 

Finally, I'm puzzled by their claim to not need lube. The neck still needs sizing, no? Do Case Pro users then just use a universal decapping die and prime at the first station in say a 550 after running brass in the Case Pro?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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What sizing die are you using? Have you tried adjusting the sizing die until it touches the shell plate? I process various head stamp .223 cases on my 1100 and everything passes the case gauges I use (Dillon and Lyman) without any problems.

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Your cases will still need to be sized after the case pro.

As George said what dies ? How are they adjusted? Are they adjusted to "cam over"?

Brass has a memory. It may take multiple passes to size some cases that were fired in a "loose chamber".

Like George I process mixed range brass on a S1050. On my tool head their are including the trim die 3

sizing dies. I have less than a 1% fail rate. The ones that fail usually have rim damage. That's were the case pro

would come into play. With your high failure rate most likely  you need to adjust your sizing die down a little bit.

Edited by AHI
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13 minutes ago, gnappi said:

RCBS dies and of course it's adjusted to touch the shell plate / holder.

Sometimes you have to go down even more and get cam over. Turn die down 1/4 turn more.

 

Edited by dtuns
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2 hours ago, gnappi said:

RCBS dies and of course it's adjusted to touch the shell plate / holder.

Turn your die in a 1/4 TURN. Size some of your failed brass and case gauge.

It may take more than 1/4 turn.   It must cam over.

 

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As far as the Case Pro is concerned, do not lube the cases because it's friction that allows it to work correctly - the cases rolling.  Use lube and the case will skid and not roll.

 

Forgot to add no to roll sizing loaded ammo - an accident waiting to happen.

Edited by RePete
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AHI - If I may respectfully ask (I just purchased another toolhead for my 1100 with plans to use it to process 223/5.56 brass) what process (die order and die type) you use?  I have a couple of complete sets of 223/5.56 dies and I am hoping I have what you use or something very similar (no reason to reinvent this wheel when you are getting such great results)…..Thanks Sir…Mark

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1 hour ago, Sigarmsp226 said:

AHI - If I may respectfully ask (I just purchased another toolhead for my 1100 with plans to use it to process 223/5.56 brass) what process (die order and die type) you use?  I have a couple of complete sets of 223/5.56 dies and I am hoping I have what you use or something very similar (no reason to reinvent this wheel when you are getting such great results)…..Thanks Sir…Mark

Mark, here my processing setup for .223/5.56 (tool head on the right):

station 1 - case feed

station 2 - FW Arms popper decapper 

station 3 - FW arms auto centering Swage foot die

station 4 - empty

station 5 - empty

station 6 - Bosch honey Badger trimmer setup  with Dillon .223 carbide trim die

station 7 - empty

station 8 - Lyman .223 M die 

 

B8-FDD567-8-B0-F-4704-B693-A9963-F12786-

 

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On 7/22/2021 at 7:27 AM, gnappi said:

It doesn't matter whether I use a single stage or 550 press, too many of my .223 cases (once fired mixed head stamps) fail the plunk test in a case gauge after sizing. It's aggravating to say the least so I'm thinking about a Case Pro for .223 only.

 

Doesn't matter which die you are using or roll sizing the bases of the brass. With rifle brass, especially 223, you almost always have to "over cam" the die to set the shoulder in the right location. There are a lot of YouTube videos about precision rifle reloading, Dillon has instructions on line about "head spacing" you brass to set up the sizing die.

From Dillon:

 

The sizing/ depriming die is a full-length sizing die, manufactured to minimum tol- erances. We strongly suggest that a head-

space case gage be used to correctly adjust the size die. Always clean and lube your rifle cases before attempting to process the cases (thru the size die).
1. Move the handle down to raise the plat-

form.
2. Screw the sizing/ depriming die into sta-

tion 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 siz-

ing and headspace. Readjust the die as

needed to achieve proper headspace.

5. With a case in the die, snug the lock

ring.

 

Setting up the sizing die is more than touching the shell plate. To do it properly you will need a precise gauge to check for head space. Many so called 223 gauges are way too loose and lie to you. The two best and most precise I know of and use for 223 are these:

 

JP 223 Wylde gauge, the advantage is it only checks head space and case length, which is good for bolt gunners who load longer than 2.26 (max magazine OAL). It is also machined in the Wylde chamber, so if it passes it will fit in 5.56 and 223 Rem chambers with the only issue then being OAL requirements.

https://www.jprifles.com/instructions/Rifle/JPCG-223.pdf

 

The other is Sheridan Engineering slotted gauge. This is machined to a very tight short OAL chamber for 223 Rem. If it fits here it will fit in any factory chamber. 

https://sheridanengineering.com/product/223-rem-ammunition-gauge/

 

The main point is if your die is not properly set up it will not set the shoulder properly and the brass will not head space and get stuck in the chamber. If after sizing the brass drops into (and correctly meets the headspace marks) one of the above gauges and drops out when turned upside down your brass will work in a gun. If it won't gauge after seating the bullet you have other problems which are causing damage the shoulder area.

 

Good luck.

 

 

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George - Thank you Sir. You answered one of my ons with your post…..actually one question and one thought. I have a FW Arms 1st Generation Primer Popper die and Swage hold down die that I was considering using in stations 2 and 3 (just like you are).

and my question was - Is it recommended to use a Full Length or Small Base for 223/5.56 that will be shot in semi-auto (AR’s)…..Thanks for sharing your set up…Mark

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Sigarms my set up is similar to George's.  First I have a tool head with a mighty armory escaping die and hold down. I process all of my brass with this head by adding the appropriate lee under size die. Now for the second tool head for 223.

1  case feed

2. Redding neck sizeing die 

3  hold down die  that has been turned down to not affect the neck size

5

6 Dillon trim die set to size correctly

7 Sinclair expander die to knock off inside flashing

8 Redding small base die again adjusted correctly

 

Just a note I remove the primer system when pressing brass

 

 

 

 

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AHI - Thanks for your details also Sir…I have a small base die that I have used in a limited capacity in the past on my 650 but with very good results. I was hoping George or you were using a small base die in your brass prep processing…This will be part of my set up…Thanks again for sharing…Mark

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Make sure you have brass at all stations when setting up the sizer.

I have been loading 223, 30-06 and 308 on Dillon Presses since the middle 80's.  I have never had problems as some do.

I was using RCBS standard sizers that come with a  FL 2- die set. 

 

And, Dillon Sizers are considered small base sizers.

Edited by Plinker45ACP
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