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Thread: Case trimmer pilot dimensions

  1. #1

    Case trimmer pilot dimensions

    Hi, I've just been given a Redding 1400 case trimmer but it has no pilots, seeing that I have a lathe I am going to make them, but I'm not sure how much clearance is needed. would anyone be able to measure the collet diameter on a couple of different sized ones to get a bit of an average, I'm just guessing maybe 004" undersized of the expander ball?
    Thanks

    wes

  2. #2
    Size a case then make the pilot a nice running fit in it. Polish it as smooth as possible --- Not too tight as you will turn over a small burr as you trim & that could jam a bit. As you have your own lathe it is easy to polish the pilot down a thou or two if necessary. Only make it slack enough to not grab so that you maintain the best alignment of case in the machine. Absolute measurements are not necessary let feel be your guide.
    I trim after sizing while the brass still has traces of lube on it. The lube helps the cutting action - then wash cases off last job. The lanolin in my lube keeps my hands smooooooth & stops chaffing when doing large batches.

    Ian

  3. #3
    Yeah I was thinking the same thing really, I was more curios than anything. I'm going to use stainless for the pilot. That should polish up nice and won't rust. The Redding is so much better than the old simplex case trimmer I have. I have to hold the case by hand and it's terrible on the fingers! I modded it to use a cordless drill but it's still murder
    Click image for larger version. 

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  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by oldmate View Post
    Yeah I was thinking the same thing really, I was more curios than anything. I'm going to use stainless for the pilot. That should polish up nice and won't rust. The Redding is so much better than the old simplex case trimmer I have. I have to hold the case by hand and it's terrible on the fingers! I modded it to use a cordless drill but it's still murder
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Oldmate, use Silver Steel polish it and harden by heating bright red and quench in a 50-50 mix of clean motor oil and parifin then polish it again, i tried using stainless and it had a tendency to grab every now and then and leave brass streaks on the pilot

    Ian.
    Last edited by Whitebeard; 11-12-2016 at 00:53.

  5. #5
    Thanks whitebeard, I wouldn't of thought the staino would grab. I've only ever used straight oil not a mix, does it make any difference?

  6. #6
    Silver steel needs to be quenched quick but i found that quenching in water was to quick and resulted in cracking, straight motor oil was too slow and did not result in the glass hardness you can get, an old boy round the corner suggested the 50-50 mix it gave the hardness you can get with water without the risk of cracking

    Ian.
    Last edited by Whitebeard; 11-12-2016 at 01:08.

  7. #7
    I'll have to see what I've got laying around the old boys shed, thanks for the info

    Wes

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