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Am I resizing right? - from someone brand new to reloading...

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by fish1260, Nov 10, 2012.

  1. fish1260

    fish1260 SW WA Member

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    Hi All,

    I am brand new to reloading, and simply doing it to cut costs, and avoid tossing/recycling all my brass.

    Resizing (.223), I read a couple loading manuals, and read a few things online, watched a couple youtube videos and read a bit more. Pretty darn sure I was doing everything right. I figured I would start with the cheap brass, some S&B, once fired. Press and Dies adjusted according to manufacturer instructions (lyman press, lee dies). Everything went smooth, except after resizing there is tooling marks (ring) around the headstamp from the shellholder. I sized several, then was curious, so I removed the die, and readjusted it, same result. Seemed like too much pressure, over adjusted may be the problem, but I followed directions, and even readjusted. Next I figured it may be the cheap S&B brass that is soft, so I pulled out some federal brass, and with the same result, except for the scaring was even worse on the federal.

    I guess I am curious, is this normal, or something to be concerned about? Picture attached, and sorry, low quality iphone picture...

    photo(2).jpg
     
  2. Kaltbluter

    Kaltbluter Eugene Member 2015 Volunteer

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    I use Lee dies with a #4 shell holder for .223. I am not getting any tool marks where you are.

    Is there a burr around the primer drop hole in your shell holder?
     
  3. fish1260

    fish1260 SW WA Member

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    I am using the same Lee #4 shell holder. There is no visible burr, but i suppose it couldn't hurt to clean it up a bit and see if it makes a difference.
     
  4. Tim K

    Tim K Colorado Member

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    Post a pic before sizing please. I'd like to see exactly what marks are new. You might also post a pick of your shell holder.
     
  5. Throckmorton

    Throckmorton Florence,Ore ah gone Well-Known Member

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    you're not sizing the brass dry ar you? they must be lubed before sizing.
     
  6. fish1260

    fish1260 SW WA Member

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    Yes, they are lubed prior to sizing. Here are a couple of pictures, or some brass prior to sizing, and the shell holder...

    photo(4).jpg

    photo(5).jpg

    photo(4).jpg

    photo(5).jpg
     
  7. MarkAd

    MarkAd Port Orchard Well-Known Member

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    Is your die adjusted according to the directions that came with it? You may be pressing the brass in the shell holder.
     
  8. Sheldon

    Sheldon California Member

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    Might be the shell holder is machined funky and it impressing that mark on the brass.

    The cases aren't very hard to pull out of the die are they?? I'de be worried the cases are sticking so badly in the die that the pressure to remove them was tearing the rims of the case, because the look is what I would expect to see in that situation as well.
     
  9. deadshot2

    deadshot2 NW Quadrant WA State Well-Known Member

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    When a sizing die is properly adjusted, the bottom of the die contacts the top of the shell holder and that's as far as it can go. You can't over adjust and cause marks like this. What I see could be a burr on the edge of he machining. One thing about Lee is that they don't spend a lot of time with finish on their products. Metal parts are pretty much just tumbled in varying media in order to remove burrs.

    I would try another shell holder of a different brand (borrow if possible) and then see if the marks continue. All in all, marking like this is not an issue with the performance of the case. If you were to magnify them you'd see that they are just "marks", not truly damage.

    If you're using a Lee Die, chances are the interior isn't as smooth as other brands costing more (more finish work drives the cost up) so it may take more pressure to size the case. All case material is pretty much the same consistency. Military Brass will be the hardest as the heads undergo an extra "work hardening" step. Try a piece of Lake City brass and see if the marks are still present. That, or a piece of brass that's been fired several times and the head has been work hardened from the flex of firing.
     
  10. RVTECH

    RVTECH LaPine Well-Known Member

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    I agree. I too see see what appears to be a burr or a slight bulge around the rim of the primer drop hole. Take a small tool and rest it on the edge of the hole and lightly slide it back toward the rim groove and see if you can feel a 'bump' revealing an imerfection. It is possible the hole was punched as opposed to bored and could have resulted in the less than flat surface as it should be. I checked a #10 RCBS shell holder and it is as flat and as smooth as can be.
     
  11. Kaltbluter

    Kaltbluter Eugene Member 2015 Volunteer

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    Is your decapping rod set too deep? You might be pushing on the bottom of the brass with the shoulder of the decapping rod and trying to extrude the bottom of the brass through the primer drop hole.
     
  12. fish1260

    fish1260 SW WA Member

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    Thanks for the recommendations. I picked up an RCBS shell holder, and I'll try backing the decapping rod a bit before I try the next batch.
     
  13. deadshot2

    deadshot2 NW Quadrant WA State Well-Known Member

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    Not with a Lee sizing die. The decapping rod is held in a collet nut and if the rod bottoms out it merely slides up through the nut. Even if tightened as tight as possible it still slips when it meets the pressure of the bottom of the case. Sizing dies with threaded decapping rods will behave as you indicated but not the Lee.
     
  14. motoman98

    motoman98 Gresham, OR Active Member

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    That shell holder looks pretty rough. Get another, try Redding or RCBS
     
  15. lamrith

    lamrith tacoma Active Member

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    If you have access to a small buff/flapper/sanding wheel and a die grind it might be worth a quick like touch to debur. or even a small round grinding stone by hand or sandpaper to knock the edge down.
     
  16. deadshot2

    deadshot2 NW Quadrant WA State Well-Known Member

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    Just put some valve grinding compound on the base of a scrap case. Lap off the rough edges. Slide in and out and rotate. Same principle as lapping a bore.
     
  17. ma96782

    ma96782 Vancouver, WA Well-Known Member

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    Beside your current problem.

    Being that this is your first venture.........I'd be concerned that the cases that you resized are actually correctly headspaced. Are you using a gauge to check? The reason I ask is that just using the "printed directions" could still lead you to problems with over sized and/or under sized cases. Yes.....even a little bit could be enough to cause problems.

    I suggest that you invest in a gauge if you don't already have one. YES, you could also use your rifle's chamber. But, you also have to know the "correct technique." Then........if you're loading for more than one rifle (of the same caliber) you should also check that your ammo will chamber in the other rifle(s). Again, just a little bit could mean the difference between flawless chambering or problems. The gauge will get you close but, it's not a total guarantee. LOL, I learned the hard way.

    A cheap gauge to use, is one like this......

    Wilson Case Gauge | Sinclair Intl

    Aloha, Mark