Best Die Set for Cast/Plated 9mm


December 23, 2012, 01:04 PM
What is probably the best 9mm reloading die set for cast and plated bullets? Lyman 3 or 4 die set, Lee 4 die set with the FCD, RCBS?

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December 23, 2012, 01:14 PM
I load a bunch of 9mm, and I use Lee dies, with the FCD. I like the way the FCD crimps, and the way the crimp is adjusted.

December 23, 2012, 01:37 PM
For cast don't use the Lee FCD. It creates a whole bunch of issues if it swages the bullets down to jacketed size. I use a Lee die set along w/ a Lyman M die to expand the case for oversized cast bullets. I don't load plated so I can't help you there.

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December 23, 2012, 01:49 PM
I use a mixed bag for plated and lead bullets.

Lee sizer because it works well.

Lee universal flaring tool for plated. It only flares, does not expand the case mouth. For lead bullets I use the Lyman 'M' die here.

Redding comp. seater because I get fewer scraped bullets with it and I don't have to flare as much as I did with the Lee seater.

Redding taper crimp die.

December 23, 2012, 02:12 PM
As far as a set, is the Lyman 4 die set good for cast, since that 4th die is just a taper crimp die and not a resizer like the Lee FCD?

I tried using RCBS 3 die set for cast and it was a real pain with Missouri small ball cast bullets to get the case the right size to get in the chamber.

December 23, 2012, 11:32 PM
I use the lee 3 die set with Missouri small ball and have no issues FWIW

December 24, 2012, 05:33 PM
There is no " best" die set for anything, it's not that simple nor does it need to be - neither you nor your firearm will ever know what brand of die made the ammo. After you learn to reload you may develop a taste for doing things a specific way and you can buy dies that work the way you wish later but until then it won't matter a bit.

Lee's FCD is great for making handgun ammo that will chamber every time, that's what it's made for. And it won't do a thing to any bullet that's the proper diameter, cast or jacketed.

December 24, 2012, 10:36 PM
So what is your definition of proper diameter? Does Lee know what size bullet my 1894C likes to use? I can tell you they don't make a push through sizer for it. So the FCD carbide ring swages the bullet down to a smaller than acceptable diameter that leads to leading. There are very few instances where you need to use the FCD to begin with. And using it with cast almost always leads to problems.

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December 25, 2012, 10:41 AM
I'm not convinced that any particular mfg. of dies will do a better job than another for loading 9mm. cast, plated or jacketed. The only thing that might be an issue is the shape of the bullet seating plug used, due to the profile of the bullet used.

I've been using Lee 4-die sets for 9mm with the FCD without any problems for all profiles(even DEWC lead). I also haven't had any problems using the FCD with any cast bullets, nor noticed that they size those slugs down. FWIW, I use .357dia. cast in 9mm and 38Super, and .356jacketed in both and can't measure any reduction in size when I pull bullets.

December 27, 2012, 01:16 PM
Yeah I would like to use .356 Missouri small ball because they are about the cheapest bullets to reload for.

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