357SIG dies and questions?


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agony
December 31, 2002, 12:16 AM
Well, looking at getting some 357SIG dies. Going to load mostly single-stage for a while, and may never go progressive with this round. SImply because I don't forsee shooting it as much as other calibers. Plus the Dillon 357SIG dies are rediculously expensive at twice the price of other dies.

SO which dies do you think work best? I've been a Redding fan for some time but looking also at the RCBS, Hornady and Forester. I'm a bit leary of the Lee, which is half the price of the Reddings.

2nd question: As this is a bottle necked case, and from the lack of any carbide dies out there for the 357SIG, do I need to lube the cases and necks first? I know, stupid question, but it's not addressed in my load books. I'm assuming yes. But the round spaces on the case rim and not the shoulder right?

I want a new caliber to explore....is this the one?
I load a lot of 9mm and 45acp.

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duncan
December 31, 2002, 01:06 AM
Many folks including myself have been very happy with our Lee dies.

The rate right up there with my RCBS and Lyman dies.

Where else are you going to get a decent set of three dies like their Pacesetter or Deluxe sets for under $25?

I've loaded about 3K on my Lee 357 sig dies and recommend getting the Lee Factory Crimp die for all straight walled and bottlenecked pistol rounds.

You need resizing lube or case lube even with carbide dies. Saves your dies from forcing the brass to re-form.

Why spend $100 for a set of Dillon 357 sig dies?

My $15 Lee dies work just fine in both of my Dillon 550 presses.

And yes, 357 sig is the one to reload.

Recommend buying a 2K of Montana Gold 125 grain 357 sig bullets. Bullet was designed for 357 sig and since it's an FMJ, you can push as fast as the powder, case, and gun will allow.

I've chrono'd my 12.8 grains of AA#9 and the above bullet out of a Glock 20 with a Federal Arms 357 sig conversion barrel doing almost 1300 fps! That's Speer Gold Dot velocity!

And with great accuracy - punch a one inch hole in a target at 25 yards offhand.

Zero
December 31, 2002, 09:03 AM
I believe the Dillon dies are the only ones that are carbide. And you should still lube them, so it doesn't make much sense to spend the extra cash. This is one of the calibers that I reload most. I use the RCBS dies. Here are a few pointers. The Speer brass in this cal can have a flash hole on the small side, and i've had my decapping pin pulled out of the rcbs die at least a dozen times. I also use the Dillon case lube Whichever setup and die set you use, try not to flare the case mouth much, otherwise getting a good hold on the bullet will be difficult. I also use the West Coast Bullet's Plated 124 gr Flat Point bullet, also with success

griz
December 31, 2002, 12:52 PM
I didn't know Lee had a factory crimp die for the Sig round. Guess it's time for me to buy one.

Catbird
December 31, 2002, 01:10 PM
griz commented:
I didn't know Lee had a factory crimp die for the Sig round. Guess it's time for me to buy one.

I'm not sure that they do. I've heard of reloaders making them, themselves, by using the Lee FCD body for a .40 and mating it with the Lee FCD insert for a 9mm.

duncan, who sells a Lee FCD for .357SIG? Product number?

I use RCBS .357SIG dies and I lightly lube my cases with the Midway brand case lube in the pump sprayer.

Edited to add:
I sure wish a reputable source would start making .357SIG case gauges. From time-to-time, I read about people who are planning on it, then nothing ever comes of it. :confused:

Nero Steptoe
December 31, 2002, 01:58 PM
"Lee Factory Crimp die for all straight walled and bottlenecked pistol rounds. "

Lee doesn't make a FCD for any bottleneck handgun rounds. You can, however, use the .40 FCD for post-sizing from the shoulder down on the .357 Sig round. You'll still need to use a separate die for seating/crimping.

Peter M. Eick
December 31, 2002, 04:44 PM
I you are adventurous, you can also take an RCBS size die and a bunch of polish and ream it out to make and FCD type of die. That is what I did since I had already lubed the cases for my pro 2000 press. I have not tried the 40 fcd approach, but I bet it works great.

I like the dillon carbide dies. My set is just a bit tighter then I would get from the lee or the rcbs, so I size with the Dillon.

mark123
January 2, 2003, 10:16 PM
Originally posted by catbird:
I sure wish a reputable source would start making .357SIG case gauges. From time-to-time, I read about people who are planning on it, then nothing ever comes of it.

There is one guy out there that has been promising them but I dealt with him on a separate deal and if you want you can email me and I will give you the name to avoid. I just use my barrel.

mark123
January 2, 2003, 10:30 PM
Originally posted by duncan:
I've chrono'd my 12.8 grains of AA#9 and the above bullet out of a Glock 20 with a Federal Arms 357 sig conversion barrel doing almost 1300 fps! That's Speer Gold Dot velocity!

.357SIG is my favorite caliber so far. I just put a Glock 20 in layaway so that may change real quick! ;)

Where did you get your Federal Arms conversion barrel and do they have longer lengths (like perhaps a 6")? How much am I looking at?

Thanks!!!

Catbird
January 2, 2003, 10:46 PM
Mark123 commented
Where did you get your Federal Arms conversion barrel and do they have longer lengths (like perhaps a 6")? How much am I looking at?

I have several that I purchased from www.gunsnstuff.net

IIRC, they cost $89 per barrel. They give you a substantial discount if you order 5 or more barrels.

Nero Steptoe
January 4, 2003, 07:12 PM
"I've heard of reloaders making them, themselves, by using the Lee FCD body for a .40 and mating it with the Lee FCD insert for a 9mm"

I don't believe that such a configuration would work. The case neck is too short/case mouth too close to shoulder for the crimping function to properly crimp.

tex_n_cal
January 5, 2003, 03:22 AM
I've loaded for the .400 Cor-Bon, which is sort of the .357 Sig's big cousin.

Make [I]DAMN sure the bullets fit the case neck tightly! These cases do not grip the bullet as strongly as a straight case, so there is a significant danger of the bullet setting back during feeding. If you don't catch it, pressures will rise drastically!:what: I suspect this problem is what actually kills most .40 Glocks that kB.

After lubing and resizing, throw the cases back in the tumbler so they get the lube removed from the inside of the case neck, which aids bullet tension.

On dies for any semiauto, I try to turn down the expander plug so it is at least .007" smaller than the bullets. This further aids a tight fit. A hard crimp will not replace a tight bullet fit!

Crimping should be very, very hard, to again help prevent bullet setback. The .357 Sig has one advantage over the .400 Corbon - you MAY be able to easily finds bullets with a crimping channellure. This would allow you to further reduce the risk of bullet setback.

When you've finally got the ammo made, point the gun in a safe direction and hand cycle the rounds through the gun, a couple times. Check the overall case length - if the bullets setback more than .005" to .010" or so, figure out how to make them stop.:scrutiny:

The .357 Sig is an interesting round, I think I may get a barrel for my Colt Delta, but it demands caution in reloading. These precautions may sound extreme, but the alternative is being an example of why people don't trust handloads. :uhoh:

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