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Expander die question

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by taylor, May 28, 2011.

  1. taylor

    taylor Willamette Valley Well-Known Member

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    I'm loading my first batch and I'm up to the expander die part. I'm loading .38 Special and using a 3 die set from Lee.
    I can't get any flare, I've followed directions carefully backing out the locking ring and the expander ball then screwing down the die till it touches then with a case inserted I screwed down the expander plug till it touched, then I kept 1/4 turns while I checked the case with a bullet. I screwed it all the way down and still no flare! and the bullet won't enter the case and I have no more room to screw down the plug.
    Am I doing something wrong?
     
  2. Throckmorton

    Throckmorton Florence,Ore ah gone Well-Known Member

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    I wonder..ur not tyring to use a .357-specific expander die are u? The slightly shorter .38 case may not be tall enough to engage the expander plug/ball.
     
  3. taylor

    taylor Willamette Valley Well-Known Member

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    Its a 38/357 die set from Lee. With the plug all the way down the cases are identical to unexpanded cases.
     
  4. Throckmorton

    Throckmorton Florence,Ore ah gone Well-Known Member

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    ON the Lee website they don't show a combo set.Is yours for sure marked for both calibers?

    My bad,did not read the fine print on their page,now I'm stumped too.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2011
  5. SAR1846

    SAR1846 Oregon Member

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    #1 - What markings are on the flare / expander die???
    #2 - Is the die kissing the shellholder when the ram is at its highest position??
    #3 - Can you attach a photo so we can see what's happening, so that we can diagnose?
     
  6. taylor

    taylor Willamette Valley Well-Known Member

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    I just took the die apart and measured the plug width with my calipers and it was .354? that couldn't possibly expand a case to accept a bullet .357 or .358 could it?