.223 reload problems


November 30, 2008, 09:04 PM
I have a dillon 550b set up with dillon dies. I got a bunch of ttz and lc brass that I am reloading and Im having a problem with not being able to eject the reloaded ammo. Its going in a ar-15 and what happens is it will load the round but it will not let you self eject the cartridge using the CH. I had to hold the barrel with my feet and pull with everything I had to get the round to eject. Although it will fire and eject. I had the same thing happen in 3 diffrent ar's so it is not just my gun that has the problem.

My sizing die is set according to dillon specs and I have contacted them on this problem. There response was that it is normal in a gun that has not sen 3-4k+ rounds through it. This answer does not seem right. Any help would be appreciated. :confused::confused::confused:


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November 30, 2008, 09:15 PM
Hmm, I have used .223 Lee dies in my 550B for a long time w/o any problems... Something ain't right, and it's not the AR's you have used IMO. Properly prepped, sized, and assembled cases from properly made and adjusted equipment can hardly not chamber and eject easilly.

I'm crying B.S. to the Dillon response.

November 30, 2008, 09:16 PM
Check the overall length of your reloads.

The only thing I can think of offhand is that the bullet is sticking into the rifling.

November 30, 2008, 09:21 PM
+1 for LJH. had the exact same problem with my Bushmaster. I even had the bullet stick in the rifleing and seperated from the case. Power everywhere. I reduced the OAL and then no problem.

November 30, 2008, 09:21 PM
make sure your bullet seating die is adjusted correctly. RCBS seating dies need a nickle coin to fit between the shell holder and seating die so as not to crimp. If you are crimping the round, dont. See if that helps.

November 30, 2008, 09:25 PM
I check ever 1 out of 5 rounds i make. I'm using a hornady reloading book and it says for 55gn. v-max to be 2.250 and fmj 55gn. to be 2.200. I have loaded the v-max to dead nuts and a few fmj to 2.200, but not have moved the col to 2.220ish. all loads have the same thing happen. Maybe I should try a different die?? Also I am not crimping. With the 2.200 the cannelure is not visible. with the new 2.220 I can see half, if that helps at all.

November 30, 2008, 09:50 PM
Check Case Length too! Some of these cases can grow well above 1.760" and will definitely stick as you describe. Trim any case over the max of 1.760". I trim all mine to 1.755" (I have the Dillon Power Trim so it's no big deal) and have cured all my case sticking issues in both of my AR's.

November 30, 2008, 09:55 PM
Ya i forgot to add that I trimmed all the brass I got. I use a lee drill trimmer all the cases come out to about 1.751 or so. I'm stumped.

November 30, 2008, 09:56 PM
I ended up having to size with the Small Base RCBS X Die. Since then at least 7 K rounds with no failures in my Colts or Bushmasters.

November 30, 2008, 10:03 PM
Sent you a PM on an easier way to eject a stuck round.

November 30, 2008, 10:07 PM
http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=408363 this might help

November 30, 2008, 10:58 PM
thanks for the PM CDRT that will help greatly. As for the problem I am just going to try out some lee dies and see how they do i guess. Every round is in spec so i have no clue what else to do. I checked the tolerances on factory load stuff that feeds good compared to my reloads and I can't find anything off more that .003 thousands. the only place i cant check is the neck itself. The reloads "neck" looks fatter than the factory stuff but that just might be a illusion. uggg... thanks for all the help so far.


December 1, 2008, 12:18 AM
What Threefeathers suggested, using RCBS small base X dies. I had trouble with my reloads as described in a Ruger Mini 14, a Ruger Mod. 77 and in my Bushmaster M4. After I went to the RCBS small base X dies and trimmed the cases my extraction and sometimes even chambering problems went away.

December 1, 2008, 12:41 AM
Its been several years since i reloaded for a AR 15. I used mixed cases, trimmed them to a uniform length and loaded them using RCBS small base dies.
Never had your problem.

December 1, 2008, 07:01 AM
http://www.stevespages.com/page8d.htm Check the drawings for case dimensions. The reloads "neck" looks fatter The neck diameter of a loaded round should not be larger than .253" The drawings for 5.56 and 223 seem to have a .002" differecne, not sure what one is correct. Make sure your dillon shell plate is the correct measurement. A standard shell holder is .125" Dillon said there shell plate should measure .132" plus or minus .005" That does not seem right to me , but that is what Dillon said. http://www.thehighroad.org/showpost.php?p=5089047&postcount=6

December 1, 2008, 11:04 AM
There are two things that could be wrong.

1. You are not using small base dies. Based on the description of the brass, you are shooting once fired military. Without a doubt that ammunition has been fired in SAWS, or M4 military chambers, the likes of which a Zeppelin could park with room to spare. A standard die will not sufficiently reduce a case expanded to Zeppelin proportions.

2 .And you are not using a cartridge head space gage to set up your dies. People just trust that screwing the die down to touch the shell holder, and “add a quarter” sizes brass to the correct headspace. The difference between a “Go” and “No Go” is often .006”. Seldom if ever have I gotten brass sized between the correct dimensions following die manufacturer’s instructions. It is probable that your cases are overly long.

If you use a small base die, you better set it up with a Cartridge headspace gage as you will oversize the stuff. That is the origin of the myth that small base dies oversize cases. Folks are not using gages to set up their dies.

Gas guns are extremely sensitive to their ammo. You will run into lots of people who have only shot their ammo in bolt rifles. Their bolt gun ammo can be incredibly sloppy and still function. Bolt gunners can use any powder, any bullet, bolt gun cocking cams are incredibly powerful, so they would never notice the problems you are having with slightly oversized ammo.

But a gas gun, as a group, those are a lot more sensitive.

December 1, 2008, 11:17 AM
Haven't seen anyone suggest that your get a .223 sizing gauge and check the brass after you resize. The gauge will tell you right away if your cases are too large to chamber or if they are out of spec as far as length or headspace goes.


December 1, 2008, 12:31 PM
Ya i forgot to add that I trimmed all the brass I got. I use a lee drill trimmer all the cases come out to about 1.751 or so. I'm stumped. Chevy69002000

Did you trim, then size? OR... Size, then trim?

It should be the latter. I'll also second getting a .223 cartridge gauge.

December 1, 2008, 12:52 PM
I had to hold the barrel with my feet and pull with everything I had to get the round to eject.1. Collapsed shoulder from crimping that you can't see with the naked eye.
2. Or MG cases that aren't getting sized enough at the base.

Find one that sticks in the rifle.
Then color it completely with a black Magic Marker.
Then chamber it.

Then get it back out by whatever means necessary.

Wherever the Magic Marker is rubbed off the case leaving a shiny spot is your problem.


December 1, 2008, 10:46 PM
I'm betting you can have no headaches for under $20.00
The easiest solution is to first get a case gauge.

I load .223 on a 550B with Dillon dies. The only problems I've had were not adjusting the resizing die down quite enough & lube.

Case gauge is the best way to to go on this. Not enough resizing & you have chambering problems. Too much & you get excessive headspace. The gauge will let you know a case will work & work safely. You can also check the finished rounds and not shoot the bad ones.

Lube - what are you using? A good lube will make a difference

The problems were mainly on range pick-up brass.

The other thing I did was start with new brass for my first reloads. 1 variable eliminated. I did not have to wonder what it was fired in.

December 2, 2008, 03:48 AM
All FL dies are reamed to size cases to SAMMI specs.
If your brass won't chamber, screw the die down to snug ou the the shell plate, and put a little lube inside the neck.
If in doubt,, remove the expander ball in the size die, snug it up to the shall plate and size the case, it will fit if you have your die set right,, you don't need a SB sizer, unless you just want to waste money.

December 2, 2008, 12:34 PM
I agree completely.
A SB die is not necessary if you adjust the standard FL die correctly.

I have been reloading GI brass with Standard RCBS FL dies since 1970 without a problem. The only problem I ever had was crimp related collapsed shoulders, and I figured that out about 1971.


December 2, 2008, 07:45 PM
Q. I see a Small Base Die Set listed for my caliber. Do I need these or should I buy a Full Length Die Set or Neck Die Set? How does each set differ?

A. The Small Base Die set is intended for use for ammunition to be used in auto, semi-auto, and lever action rifles so that the loaded round chambers and extracts easily. The Small Base Sizer Die sizes the case from the shoulder to the head of the case a couple of thousandths smaller than a Full Length Sizer Die. In certain calibers it also sets the shoulder of the case back a thousandth or two more than the Full Length Sizer Die. The Full Length Die Set or Neck Die Set is not normally recommended for ammo to be used in auto, semi-auto, or lever action rifles. The Full Length Die set is recommended for ammunition used in bolt action rifles, particularly for ammunition to be used for hunting. The Neck Die Set can also be used to produce ammunition for use in bolt action rifles. The Neck Sizer Die sizes only the neck of the case so it will hold the bullet firmly. It does not size the body of the case nor does it set the shoulder back. Neck sized cases will usually chamber for three or more firings, depending on the powder charge and chamber dimensions. However, over a period of time, a slight drag will be noticed when the bolt is locked. At this point, cases will need to be full length sized and the shoulder set back so they will chamber and extract easily.


December 2, 2008, 08:20 PM
As rcmodel said, chances are good that the sizing die is not adjusted properly.
IMO, it's best to sort your brass as to manufacturer, unless your just using it for blasting.


December 2, 2008, 08:52 PM
Two 308 Win, unsized, huge fired cases, one dropped in a Wilson chamber, the other in a gage that was cut with a chambering reamer. The one in the chambering reamer is an interference fit before sizing.


One of these huge cases sized in this small base die. It drops right in.


The other sized in this Lee standard die, it does not drop in.


This little bit of interference is more than enough to jam a semiauto, or make it next to impossible to remove a chambered round. Sometimes, rarely, this is enough to cause an out of battery slamfire in a M1 or M1a.

Those who have not had problems should buy more once fired military brass, size it with a standard die, and shoot it in a gas gun cut with a nice tight commerical chamber.

Or they should attend a lot of highpower matches and help people clear jams in their AR's. After enough questions, and similiar answers, a failure pattern will emerge.

December 2, 2008, 11:27 PM
Ok thanks to everyone for there help. And another thanks for saving me bout 40 bucks. I went out and reset the dillon die to where it was just a hair off the shell plate holder, so i got almost a whole turn out of the die. I locked her down and made bout 20 rounds. Every round that I made from the new set up feed BEAUTIFULLY through my gun. Could not tell difference from factory or reloads. So I hope this thread helps anyone else having this problem in the future. Full length dies are great you just have to set them up right. :p

cracked butt
December 3, 2008, 09:19 AM
Pay real close attention to the advice Slamfire had to offer. If you are reloading for an AR, you need to be using a headspace guage set your resizing die.

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