die question


November Ghost
December 5, 2010, 11:14 AM
i was depriming a bucket of 9mm brass when i accidently tried to deprime a berdan primer pocket brass, it was mixed in with all the other brass and when i went to deprime it, it went THUNK in the press and no primer popped out so i went to look at it and sure enough, the berdan primer screwed up the die.... now before you all tell me i can not deprime berdan primers in a press set up for centerfire flash holes...i know.....this one was mistakenly overlooked and mixed in with boxer primed brass...

anyways....now my depriming die will not pop out primers and it apperas the pin has been stuck inside the die...either that or broke, but i see no break spot and no little peice of pin is found on my bench or anything....i know the pin can be adjusted and i am trying that....the threads on the adjusting portion of the die is rusty, these are second hand dies that were given to me and I have reloaded close to 1000 9mms on them with no problem til now...

i guess my question is.....did my pin break or get jammed up inside due to the mistken berdan primed brass??

what do i do now??

any help is appreciated thank you ...

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December 5, 2010, 11:21 AM
I also have done what you did.

Spray something like WD-40 or Prolix on the die threads to loosed them up. Take out the decapping stem. You may have broken the pin and/or the stem but you can get replacements from the die manufacturer. A vice, with padding, and pliers also with padding may help in die disassembly.

December 5, 2010, 11:24 AM
You don't say what brand your dies are, but from the description, I'll assume you're talking about Lee dies. If that's the case, simply loosen the top nut and lower the decapping rod until the decapping pin is below the mouth of the die about 1/4" or so. Then tighten the nut and you'll be good to go. The rod is a friction fit to prevent bending and breaking when a Berdan primed case gets mixed in by accident.

Hope this helps.


December 5, 2010, 11:30 AM
Yup, you most likely broke off the "decapping pin". Common event. Don't feel bad. Happens to the best of us.

• If you have Hornady dies, then a replacement pin came with the die set. Look in the red box, inside the sealed bag that holds the user guide.

• If RCBS, Dillon or Lyman, then you have to call their CS. They do not seem to sell these, but they will happily send you 5 for free with a phone call.

• If Lee, then the spindle is supposed to slide back up into the die. You may simply need to reset the depth of the spindle to show ~3/16 of pin protruding from the die. If the pin broke, then you'll need a replacement spindle, which Lee sells. Go ahead and buy several. Lee uses the same decapping spindle on almost all their pistol dies and they are handy to have.

If you have a local reloading buddy, this is the type stuff that mature reloaders have stockpiled. If your dies use the miniature pin setup (like RCBS, Lyman or Hornady) I highly suggest screwing the holding cap back into place with some green Loctite. You can also break pins when the holding caps loosen up.

November Ghost
December 5, 2010, 11:45 AM
thanks ... that is what i am doing right now ... soaking it in wd-40 ... i will pad out my vise and give it a whirl ... from my readings on this forum and other places it is either a bent/broken stem or pin ... i will contact lee and see about a replacement ...

any other thoughts??

November Ghost
December 5, 2010, 11:48 AM
sorry about not telling the brand of die

it is a LEE 9mm die ....

sort of new to posting in forums...

December 5, 2010, 12:00 PM
Yes, you simply loosen the 1/2" hex on top and the spindle will fall free.

On reassembly, the 1/2" hex is only snugged-up enough to eject normal primers. You don't want that cinched down to 50 ft-lbs or it's not going to be able to slide out of the way in a "Berdan emergency".

All the best!

November Ghost
December 5, 2010, 12:01 PM
thank you for this advice ....

i will try the to loosen the threads and see if it is damaged ... i will also call lee and order more ... i understand the need to have a stockpile of parts (in my bike hobby i have tons of parts laying around!)

I appreciate all the advice and help ... i am glad i joined this forum!

December 5, 2010, 12:06 PM
Would measurements of a new spindle help you ???

November Ghost
December 5, 2010, 12:09 PM
all right ... i am back in business....thanks...i loosened the top nut and the spindle did come free and i reset the depth and she is spitting out primers !!

thanks for all your help guys!:)

December 5, 2010, 12:11 PM
It's the only High Road thing to do.

December 5, 2010, 12:21 PM
If it's a Lee die the pin shouldn't have broken off. They are made so that when this happens the whole rod pushes up out the top of the die. Just adjust it down again and it should fix the problem.

November Ghost
December 5, 2010, 12:23 PM
^^ yup exactly what i did .... i kinda thought that but wanted some other opinions first ...

thanks again!

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