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Die Questions from a noob

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by Spray-n-pray, Mar 21, 2010.

  1. Spray-n-pray

    Spray-n-pray Battle Ground Moderator Staff Member Bronze Supporter

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    Just a couple of questions from a novice reloader. I was at Bi-mart today looking at 223 RCBS die sets and there were two different kinds. One was called "small base" amd the other said "FL." I would assume that FL is full length? Anyways, what is the difference between the two, besides the $3 in cost? Is one preferable to the other?

    My other question is about my 30-06 dies. They are an older set of Pacific dies, which I believe is now a part of Hornady. The seater stem is hard to see inside to see which type of bullet it seats, and there is only a marking on the stem of "61." With my pistol die sets, there were more than one type of seater stem included with the set for different bullet types. Is that the same with rifle bullets? Can I use the same stem to seat hollow points, spitzer, and round nose?

    Thanks!!
     
  2. RockKrawler

    RockKrawler Gresham Member

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    SB stands for "Small Base" which is normally used to resize brass fired in FA/SA rifles.
    Anytime i work with military brass they get the primer pocket worked and then case is sized with a small base die set the first time around if they are to be used in a bolt action rifle.
    As to your '06 dies,why not just pull the seater and look at it?
    The seater on your Pacific die should be easily removed,you would then be able to tell what bullet type it was designed for.
     
  3. Spray-n-pray

    Spray-n-pray Battle Ground Moderator Staff Member Bronze Supporter

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    I did take out the seater plug and it looks like a round nose but I can't tell for sure. The other thing is that I don't know if a replacement plug is available anywhere for these dies.
     
  4. Brandon44647

    Brandon44647 Portland Member

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    I went with RCBS dies when I first set up for reloading .243 There not bad dies but I had a lot of issues with the bullet seating die so I went out & got a set of Hornady dies. I like them a lot better.. anyone else have issues w/RCBS dies ?
     
  5. Blitzkrieg

    Blitzkrieg WA Well-Known Member

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    IMO Lee dies are the way to go for military case reloading. The RCBS decapping pins break constantly! If you do go with the RCBS dies, also get a cheap Lee universal decapper die..

    The only good thing about RCBS is when the pins do break from decapping crimped military primers, you can replace them with the shaft of a steel pop rivet. I got tired of doing so..
     
  6. OregonJohn

    OregonJohn Sutherlin, Or Bronze Life Member #1 Lifetime Supporter

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    It is my belief, that rifle dies use the same seater stem for all types of bullets of that caliber. The stem seats the bullet off the ogive of the bullet and not the tip of the bullet. I you take the seater stem out of the die and place a bullet in the stem and rotate it by hand, it will leave a mark on the bullet at the point the bullet makes caliber. Try this with any bullet shape and you will find this same mark. It will be at different points on different bullets, but it will be at caliber on each one. This is why bullets of different shapes will have different over all case lengths when seated the exact same distance from the lands. If the die seated bullets from the tip, all the bullets you loaded would have the same over all case lenght regardless of shape.

    John