Having now trimmed a number of five gallon buckets of brass in the Giraud, I can say it is an excellent trimmer. It might take a second to trim, deburr, and bevel a case, but that is about it. For cases that only need a couple of thousandth’s removed, the trim time is as fast as you can stick them in, and give the case a half turn.
The two piece trimmer blades supplied with my Gracey were hard to adjust, and did not keep an edge. The second set I ordered were just as bad.
Mr. Giraud supplies the cutter with a carbide blade of his own design. I also have the Bob Jones carbide cutter blade. The Giraud Blade provides an internal case mouth chamfer of 15 degrees and an external case mouth of 45 degrees (per Doug Giraud). The Bob Jones does not cut as steep an internal slope as does the Giraud, and I find that I prefer the steeper slope. The reason is that it creates less resistance when seating a bullet.
This is an advantage to me, because I dump powder and seat the bullet on a Dillion 550B. Every so often a bullet will tip and jam into the bottom edge of my seating die. If I can detect this in time I can stop and can clear the condition before the case gets ruined. However, when the bullet requires significant effort to seat, it is hard to differentiate on the seating stroke between a jammed bullet and normal seating. The end result is usually a crumpled case neck.
I like having an "On-Off" Switch. I had to install one on the Gracey.
The most important thing I found that made the Giraud a speed champ was that you can cut in a horizontal position, like the Gracey, or a vertical (upright) position. With the Giraud in a vertical position, I can put the machine upright in front of me, and trim cases with both hands. In the horizontal position I can feed cases to one hand, but only one hand can hold the case in the trimmer. This little difference significantly reduces hand fatigue and increases the effective trim rate. And one other thing, with the machine pointing up, the brass chips fall down out of the shell holder. These machines headspace on the case shoulder, so with the Gracey in a horizontal position, I am constantly checking trim length, because inevitably, a brass chip will fall into the shell holder and change the trim length.
My older Giraud trimmer has a quick shell holder change feature. I can change out the shell holder from from 30-06 to 308 without having to readjust for depth. The Gracey shell holder must be readjusted for depth when changing calibers.
After I purchased my trimmer, Giraud made an improvement to his design. He created a quick change cutter head. Currently I can only trim cartridges of the same caliber without adjusting the cutter head. This adjustment is perhaps the most time consuming as I try to get an chamfer angle I like and still deburr the outside of the brass. This is also true of the Gracey. However Mr. Giraud has made a removable cutter head which is a better idea and would allow a very quick change over from .223 to .308 for example. The removable cutter head option is a great idea, but it is not cheap.
April 17, 2009, 09:07 PM
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