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LNL Quick Change bushings vs Lee Breech Lock

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I have owned a Lee Classic breech Lock for a little more than a decade. I have been doing most of my reloading on a Progressive RCBS (Pro 2000) for the last 5 years or so and using the Lee for extra stuff like factory crimp dies and such. Now I am getting back into rifle reloading and thinking about getting the MEC Marksman (I was shotgun reloading for awhile and loved their presses) and Putting a LNL bushing setup in it. My question is does the LNL bushing setup work better than the breechlock? I had lots of problems with the breechlock jamming and quickly switched to just threading the dies in and out.

Thanks as always
KD7VDB
 
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I don't have experience with Lee's breech lock, but I do have and use the LNL system. It works, but sometimes if you're doing something vigorous, like swaging primer pockets, the LNL can rotate around a bit and even start to back out. Not a major issue, but I occasionally double check they there are staying seating and don't usually find a problem.

AI7EE
 
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Dyjital

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I have owned a Lee Classic breech Lock for a little more than a decade. I have been doing most of my reloading on a Progressive RCBS (Pro 2000) for the last 5 years or so and using the Lee for extra stuff like factory crimp dies and such. Now I am getting back into rifle reloading and thinking about getting the MEC Marksman (I was shotgun reloading for awhile and loved their presses) and Putting a LNL bushing setup in it. My question is does the LNL bushing setup work better than the breechlock? I had lots of problems with the breechlock jamming and quickly switched to just threading the dies in and out.

Thanks as always
KD7VDB
I’m considering a switch to RCBS rock chucked and adding the Hornady insert for their bushings. My cousin set himself up with that under my advice about two years ago and made me a little jealous. All steel on steel engagement.

My Breechlock has just about wore out from the constant inserting and removal. Aluminum on steel doesn’t fair well.
 
My interpretation after reading yor OP is you're looking to save time as far as swapping calibers and dies on a classic press.
I may have used the Lee quick change bushings years ago, but haven't had any on my bench for the last decade.
Note, the following is MY OPINION.
  • The Hornady LnL bushings are GREAT for use on pistol calibers and small rifle cartridges (223 / 203 ruger, etc). As soon as you start to run larger bottle necked cartridges into a full sizer die, you are putting a huge amount of force onto that aluminum seat cup. I make a great amount of measurements when I start a new load cycle to make sure everything is dialed in, and don't want aluminum deformation to muck up my loads.
  • The locking rings are supposed to provide a dead stop tightening mechanism. For this reason, I use ONLY split rings, not those BS ones with just a set-screw. Once it's dialed in properly, I torque the locking ring down to a specific amount and lock it on. (not as simple as it sounds - quite a bit of adjustment there) After that, I ONLY use the locking ring to do the final tightening on my press. Result? every time, it's spot on. I still remeasure -- that's how I know it's spot on.
On the above, my problem is I use 3 different single station presses and a LnL Progressive. I've taken to marking the box as to which one the die is set for.
Also, shell holders from manufacturer to manufacturer are NOT the same. To be exact in your loads once you have your dies set, use the exact same shell holder.

The press I found to be the absolute CATS MEOW for bottle neck rifle cartridges is the Forster Co-Ax. It is the one I use the most now (except for the monster magnums). Frankford arsenal now has a copycat, the M-Press.
The Co-Ax is good for rifle cartridges from the smallest (mine is 204 Ruger) to the Belted Magnums (7mm Rem / 300 Winny, etc). It cannot do the big animals like 300 RUM or 338 Lapua. The things I love about it:
  • The die position is set by the locking ring, and is a set/forget.
  • Die change-outs are very fast. (I mean, 20 seconds?) Of course, I'm not using "remeasure" in that timing. You do that for every press.
  • You no longer need a shell holder. The clamp jaws change based on the size of cartridge, but I've only had to modify mine once.
The only con I have about the Co-Ax is the handle motion is directly in front of the press and forces you to be deliberate in your motions. It must be all the way up to swap out the brass, while on a Rock Chucker, I have the ram in motion while I'm swapping brass.

The Forster Co-Ax is spendy, hard to find, and worth every penny once you start using one.

To those of you who wonder, "three single stage presses?" Here's how it breaks down:
  • The Rock Chucker is used almost exclusively for decapping brass before a wet tumble. I use a Hornady Decapper which handles every bottle necked cartridge I shoot. It spends most of its life in a box, I pull it out 3-4 times per year. You have to tilt-in the big magnums to get them to fit in the press.
  • The Lee Classic Cast Iron is a beast and is used for loading the monster magnums.
  • The Co-Ax loads everything else.
  • The LnL is set up for whatever AR or pistol caliber needs loading at the time.
 
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I second what P7id10T shared. I run a co-ax for loading rifle, a couple dillons for handguns, and use a rock chucker for decapping cases that I tumble in SS pins. I really like the co-ax for the reasons he shared.
 

Dyjital

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I’m considering a switch to RCBS rock chucked and adding the Hornady insert for their bushings. My cousin set himself up with that under my advice about two years ago and made me a little jealous. All steel on steel engagement.

My Breechlock has just about wore out from the constant inserting and removal. Aluminum on steel doesn’t fair well.
After going around with what I'll do, I ended up getting the Lee Classic Cast breechlock.
It was not worth the additional costs to change over everything to the Hornady with a different press, adapter, additional bushings etc.

I'm very satisfied with the replacement, it's about 5x heavier, a lot stronger and is already in working order without any die/bushing modifications.
 
OP
K
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After going around with what I'll do, I ended up getting the Lee Classic Cast breechlock.
It was not worth the additional costs to change over everything to the Hornady with a different press, adapter, additional bushings etc.

I'm very satisfied with the replacement, it's about 5x heavier, a lot stronger and is already in working order without any die/bushing modifications.
How is the breechlock working? Mine in my Regular Lee Classic was pretty bad from day one with the collar getting jammed and requiring channel locks to remove most times.
 
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Lee has released some "new" stuff related to the breech lock that may be a game changer for some...or not :s0153:

LEE BREECH LOCK BUSHING LOCK RING ELIMINATOR:

LEE ULTIMATE LOCK RINGS 3 Pack

Check 'em out,
:D
 

Dyjital

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How is the breechlock working? Mine in my Regular Lee Classic was pretty bad from day one with the collar getting jammed and requiring channel locks to remove most times.
I haven't had issues. The only problem I've had is using the RCBS bullet puller that's a twist style to secure the collet. If I were to redo everything I'd end up with the Hornady which is a cam-over style. Easier on the breechlock bushings.

I only use the lock-ring eliminator style that clamps down on the die body as shown below. Those are the ONLY way to roll. I think I gave away or sold my old style that required the lock-ring to a forum member on here a while back for a really good deal when I transitioned over.


Lee has released some "new" stuff related to the breech lock that may be a game changer for some...or not :s0153:

LEE BREECH LOCK BUSHING LOCK RING ELIMINATOR:

LEE ULTIMATE LOCK RINGS 3 Pack

Check 'em out,
:D
Absolutely a must. If you don't use them you have to reverse the lock-ring so you have more contact with the bushing.
 
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I haven't had issues. The only problem I've had is using the RCBS bullet puller that's a twist style to secure the collet. If I were to redo everything I'd end up with the Hornady which is a cam-over style. Easier on the breechlock bushings.

I only use the lock-ring eliminator style that clamps down on the die body as shown below. Those are the ONLY way to roll. I think I gave away or sold my old style that required the lock-ring to a forum member on here a while back for a really good deal when I transitioned over.



Absolutely a must. If you don't use them you have to reverse the lock-ring so you have more contact with the bushing.
Yeh, 1st saw the bushing/lock ring combos on the Lee Breach Lock Pro press when it was introduced.
They migrated to everything Breech Lock soon after...
:rolleyes:
 
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I'm not familiar with Lee stuff other than their cheap sizers and bullet molds which I like, but I have a Hornady press for my .50 bmg that uses lock and load type bushings. If I don't pay attention when sizing brass the bushings will rotate and the shell holder will come out of the press with the brass and you have to line everything back up to relock it back in. It's a good system other than having to watch it closer.
 

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