I've bought myself all the kit to start reloading and am playing around with it at the moment working out how it all works. I've taken some cases from factory ammo that were fired in my rifle and have been measuring to see what the various dies do.
All the cases fit back into my rifle and are below the max length so I don't think that trimming and full length resizing are necessary. I have however taken a few cases and put them through the full length die to see what it does. These cases now don't fit so well in my rifle, taking a bit of effort to close the bolt. The area of pressure seems to be at the shoulder. I'm confused by this as I would have thought that the full length die would return them to standard. Am I doing something wrong?
Also, before neck sizing, a bullet is loose in the neck, but on some of the cases even after neck sizing I can push a bullet with a bit of effort right in up to the cannelure and work it free again. It doesn't seem tight enough to me.
One more question, I've read a lot about seating the bullet just slightly off the lands. I've made a loose fitting case and tried chambering it to see what the OAL measures when it is on the lands. Its longer than the max OAL of the calibre by about 2mm.
The calibre is 6.5x55 and I know some bullets are very long so assume that its not that important to have them right forwards against the rifling.
I'm holding back from actually loading anything that goes bang yet until I've worked out all these little things. Its all very interesting though.