RCBS .223 seating die issues?


something vague
May 1, 2009, 05:59 PM
I recently purchased a set of RCBS's basic .223 relaoding dies. I am using these dies to seat bullets in the 40gr. to 55gr. range with all being some sort of match hollow point or V-max style bullets. I am new to reloading for rifle, somewhat anyways, and have been having a hell of a time with the seating die. The first issue is that if the bullet tips to the side just a small bit as it goes up in the die, the edge of the seater plug sometimes puts a ding in the tip of my hollowpoints before it slides into place. There isn't anything to guide the bullet where it needs to be. The second and biggest issue is that every round that gets seated comes out with a ring just below the tip where the seater is contacting the bullet. Sometimes this ring is excessive to the point that I can run my nail accross the bullet and it actually gets hung up on the ring, telling me that it is pretty deep. Neither of these issues can possibly be good for accuaracy, seems how that is what I am loading for in the first place. Is there something that I can do to this die that will help fix either of these two problems with out spending another $20 or $30 for a custom made seater stem that I may or may not be happy with? And if there is, how would I accomplish the task? Also, is this common with RCBS's dies?

Would I just be better off eating the cost of the RCBS and purchase a Forster Seating die?

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May 1, 2009, 06:05 PM
Are you chamfering the insides of the case necks?

That helps the flat base bullets get started in the case easier.

Boat-tails are a non-issue.

You can probably polish the inside of the seater stem with emery paper or a Dremel tip to remove any sharp edge. Taper the edge a little to help guide the bullet tips into it easier without hanging up & denting them.

As for flat-base bullet alignment before seating?

Just take your time a feel around for it before you mash the handle down.


Karl Hungus
May 1, 2009, 06:24 PM
Check the ID of you case necks after re-sizing. Then check the diameter of the expander pin (or whatever it's actually called - the little doohicky that expands the case neck) in your resizing die. I had the exact same problem with a Hornady die set - the necks weren't being expanded enough after resizing. This led to excessive pressure having to be exerted when seating, which led to ring around the bullet.

something vague
May 1, 2009, 06:26 PM
Yeah I chamfer, but not very heavy. It seems like some of the videos I've seen on you-tube, they chamfer quit a bit more than I do. Wouldn't chamfering too much start to effect the tension of the neck holding the bullet or is that just being over analitical?

May 1, 2009, 06:28 PM
Well, you wouldn't want to chamfer out to a sharp case mouth edge.

Less then that is fine.
Good in fact with flat base bullets.


May 1, 2009, 06:29 PM
I experienced the same problem with RCBS(never my favorite anyway) and Lyman and Lee and Redding. I chamfer!!!!! I finally resolved the problem by buying a Hornady 22 cal. seating die. The floating seater holds the projectile from the time it leaves your finger until it is seated. One die does it all, from 22 Hornet and 218 Bee up and including 220 Swift and 224 Weatherby. Great design, I have them for most calibers now. You can buy the die separately.

Steve in PA
May 1, 2009, 09:29 PM
Make sure you chamfer the case.

You can contact RCBS and send them one of the bullets you are using so they can make you a seating stem that fits the bullet.

I've been reloading for 18 years and using nothing but RCBS dies for the dozen or so calibers I reload for. Never had a problem.

I also use the RCBS dies to reload for my .223 and use FMJ, SP and V-Max bullets. Never had a problem loading any of them.

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