Which reloading dies ?

Lloyd90

Well-Known Member
Any recommendations for which 243 WIN dies to get for a RCBS rock chucker ?

Are competition dies with the micrometer adjustments better ?

Thanks

Lloyd
 

Whitebeard

Well-Known Member
Competition dies are an expensive luxury that do not produce any better ammo then standard dies, they are just easier to use if you seek ultimate precision
Having used dies from all makers i would be happy with any from RCBS, Redding Hornady and Forster but my Preference would be a Redding Type S Bushing Neck size die and a Forster Micrometre Benchrest seater easily available in 243.
Lee dies load ammo as accurate as any of the others but they are cheap and lack the quality of the others, dont be seduced by the talk of the Lee Collet die, they are a sound concept poorly executed by Lee, you have a 50-50 chance of them sizing the neck correctly and may need fettling to work correctly

Ian
 

pierred

Well-Known Member
Competition dies are an expensive luxury that do not produce any better ammo then standard dies, they are just easier to use if you seek ultimate precision
Having used dies from all makers i would be happy with any from RCBS, Redding Hornady and Forster but my Preference would be a Redding Type S Bushing Neck size die and a Forster Micrometre Benchrest seater easily available in 243.
Lee dies load ammo as accurate as any of the others but they are cheap and lack the quality of the others, dont be seduced by the talk of the Lee Collet die, they are a sound concept poorly executed by Lee, you have a 50-50 chance of them sizing the neck correctly and may need fettling to work correctly

Ian
Just about mirrors my views
 

enfieldspares

Well-Known Member
Competition dies are an expensive luxury that do not produce any better ammo then standard dies, they are just easier to use if you seek ultimate precision
What he says +1. In fact I found that I find a combination of bullet weight and seating depth that works and then lock-up the die tight, stick a paper label around ith, write on the bullet it is adjusted for and don't touch it.

That's the beauty of RCBS, Lyman, Redding lock rings. You can lock-up the die tight yet it will still screw in and out of your press. If I then want to set up another bullet weight I just buy another, on its own, seating die and set that up the same way.

For my .270 WCF I had two dies so set. A 140 grain and a 150 grain. For my .303 Enfield just one die set up that way as I only ever shot 174 grain FMJ.

You can't get that precision repeatability with Lee dies with their factory lock ring. Regardless of what the Lee "fan boys" will tell you their lock rings won't allow that method of reloading. That true benefit of being able to unscrew a die fully set up from the press and screw it back in with the seating and crimping (or not) remaining absolutely as last used.

If you do it that way you truly don't need micrometer dies. Also learn to read your die. How many turns, or part turns, of the seating plug alter the seating depth of that bullet. Again Lee dies that don't have a screw slot on the seating plug don't offer that visual check on if you've turned 1/8th turn or 1/4th turn and so on.

I like Lee Factory Crimp dies but I don't rate their rifle loading dies at all because of this little benefits that RCBS, Lyman and Redding have by the nature of their lock ring and seater plug set up. If you do get them chuck the lock rings away and get third party lock rings that have a screw to tighten them around the die.

And I don't like Hornady's version of Forster/Bonanza dies with the drop down sleeve either. It's a bloody PITA!
 
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Lloyd90

Well-Known Member
Thank you all, especially Enfield!

I I think I will try to look on YouTube of how exactly they are used.

I assume with with the micrometer seating die I can set exactly the seating depth. Assuming on others you adjust it to approx, seat the bullet, remove it and measure the over all length ?

Was wondering how you would repeatedly measure the depth your seating to if swapping the dies over for each stage etc!
 

enfieldspares

Well-Known Member
To adjust seating depth you turn in the bullet seating plug. What I do is seat the bullet 'out' then gradually with no actual round in the die turn the scree 'in'. Then run the cartridge up in to it. Take it out and measure it. Repeat until desired overall length achieved.

For, as you can seat and re-seat the same one cartridge and bullet idefinitely, you just measure that one round until you've reached the overall lngth you want. In that same way you'd also set up the die to seat a bullet to place its cannelure level with the cartridge's case mouth. Then when you've achieved the overall ength you want you 'lock' the seater plug using its locking ring.

Lee dies don't have a locking ring on the seater plug. That's why I don't favour them. No matter how careful you are if you can't lock it eventually you'll by accident alter it.l
 
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deeangeo

Well-Known Member
My own view is RCBS & Redding make very good dies. Somewhat more expensive than Lee, but they offer good adjustment both for the decapping/expander rod & bullet seating plug.

My best advice is not so much whose dies you buy, but how you set them up. Care setting up accurately pays.

A Universal decapping die such as Lee makes is a very useful die to have.
I use one & decap as a separate operation and when resizing the cases, have the expander/decap rod backed right off almost as far as it goes.
The expander ball then just fits through the neck helping case neck & case body alignment.

I like the competition bullet seating dies.
The Redding is good, but you need a lot of space under the die & within the press to use it easily and unless design has changed, the Rockchukker doesn't have quite enough space, so using this die in a Rockchukker is more fiddly.

The RCBS competition seating die has a 'window' in the upper side of the die allowing a bullet to be dropped into the collar/case neck & is much more convenient when used with a Rockchukker press.

In terms of finished cartridge, neither of the above bullet seater is better than the other.
To me, they (Competition dies) are useful and I have one of each, for each cartridge I load.

You can seat bullets perfectly well with ordinary seating dies, so unless you really want the micrometer adjustment, try a standard die first.
 
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aris

Well-Known Member
Are you referring to the rubber gasket lee uses to lock the ring in place not being secure enough? Lee make a secure lock for their breech lock system which makes it easier to swap dies. This is of course if you are using a Lee press too.

http://leeprecision.com/lock-ring-eliminator.html

Check out the video on the page.
 

enfieldspares

Well-Known Member
Aris has the Lee item shown to lock the die for a Lee press with a "breech lock" system. But for a standard press anyone's lock die will do and after the pistol ban these lock rings could be picked up for very little cost from shooters who had handed in their dies but retained the lock rings or swapped Lee rubber rings onto the surrendered dies.
 

aris

Well-Known Member
Aris has the Lee item shown to lock the die for a Lee press with a "breech lock" system. But for a standard press anyone's lock die will do and after the pistol ban these lock rings could be picked up for very little cost from shooters who had handed in their dies but retained the lock rings or swapped Lee rubber rings onto the surrendered dies.
As the threads are the same on all these dies, I would presume you could use any die lock. Lots to choose from

https://www.midwayusa.com/s?userSearchQuery=die+lock
 

bewsher500

Well-Known Member
well I was a tried and tested Lee Collet die user and recently inherited some Redding Competition dies including a bushing neck die

this die requires measurement of a loaded round to get the correct bushing (another £25!)
Now how they expect you to have made the loaded round without another set of dies I do not know!

so I followed the instructions and got a .268 bush for a .270 OD made up round and a .272 chamber in my 6BR

the final OD of the new brass is ........ .269-270!
getting springback in the brass and now require another £25 to rectify the problem!

pain in my arse over complicating things in my opinion!

granted they are well made but they don't actually do what I need them to do without more expense and trial and error
 

Woodlander

Well-Known Member
I like the RCBS competition dies,especially the seating die with the window to drop the bullet in,never liked Trying to balance it on the cartridge and hoping that it didn't fall off. Mind you,made some very accurate rounds with a £35 Lee set.
 

enfieldspares

Well-Known Member
Yes. Avoid! Redding dies are good but there are issues with the plastic seater plug on their 'comp' dies. To be candid for standard stalking...even out to 100 or 200 yards in a standard rifle then standard dies are ALL you need. Save your money, get Redding Standard Dies and with what you saved buy their optionsl carbide expander button for the sizer/expander die.

Like many here I've done this game for near forty years and tried, or played, with most of the gimmicks and gizmos. Or know reloaders that have. Whilst competition dies may allow more visible indication of varying seating they won't give any more or less precision than standard dies and an OAL gauge.

And for a one load one bullet 'go to' cartridge aren't needed. All I do, also, for multiple bullet loads is make up a series of dummy rounds...no primer no powder...and then set the seating die up using that. Accuracy comes through eliminating variations between rounds in a way that is consistently repeatable. Comp dies with 'dial in' heads offer no improvement on that over standard dies and a dummy round as a setting tool.
 
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Lloyd90

Well-Known Member
Yes. Avoid! Redding dies are good but there are issues with the plastic seater plug on their 'comp' dies. To be candid for standard stalking...even out to 100 or 200 yards in a standard rifle then standard dies are ALL you need. Save your money, get Redding Standard Dies and with what you saved buy their optionsl carbide expander button for the sizer/expander die.

Like many here I've done this game for near forty years and tried, or played, with most of the gimmicks and gizmos. Or know reloaders that have. Whilst competition dies may allow more visible indication of varying seating they won't give any more or less precision than standard dies and an OAL gauge.

And for a one load one bullet 'go to' cartridge aren't needed. All I do, also, for multiple bullet loads is make up a series of dummy rounds...no primer no powder...and then set the seating die up using that. Accuracy comes through eliminating variations between rounds in a way that is consistently repeatable. Comp dies with 'dial in' heads offer no improvement on that over standard dies and a dummy round as a setting tool.
whats the optional carbide expander button ?

Any my views on neck sizing only vs FL sizing ?
Reading some reviews saying people used to neck size but have gone back to FL
 

enfieldspares

Well-Known Member
The optional button comes in a small packet. In UK it's about £35 and you unscrew the standard Redding de-cap rod and remove from it the fitted as standard expander/decapper bit. Replacing these with the contents of the small packet: a carbide 'button' or 'ball', and a replacement decapper bit. The reassemble the rod back into the die.

It gives less resistance, less noise and less stretch and stress on the case neck. Despite the cost I've gone over to Standard Redding Dies simply to get this ability to swap in a carbide expander button. I've seen them, years ago, as an aftermatket third party option for RCBS dies. But none ever in UK for RCBS.

Norman Clarke has Redding stuff, is very helpful, and had these carbide buttons in the common 6mm, 7mm, .30" diameters. I wish they weren't so costly AND that I could have gotten those third party ones for RCBS dies. That, effectively, l've junked my RCBS dies because of this speaks for how much better they are than a steel standard expander 'button' or 'ball'.
 

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