Hornady .308 165 SST loose in shell


January 13, 2013, 05:21 PM
I'm just starting reloading for my 30-06. Reloaded for .243 and .243 wssm previously. I'm using a Lee classic turret. From Hornady 8th edition it lists the C.O.L. at 3.210" for the 165 SST.

I loaded a few with no powder to set my dies. When I loaded to the C.O.L. of 3.210" the end of the shell is on the cannelure. I'm able to move the bullet with my fingers the width of the cannelure. Is this a common thing or just me?

I looked at Lyman 49th and it shows 3.285. I tried a few at that length. Some are not seating the bullet and it stays in the die.

Any ideas or suggestions?

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January 13, 2013, 06:02 PM
It's not normal - you don't have enough neck tension. It's probably an incorrect or oversized expander button. What brand resizing die are you using? I'd probably start by contacting the die manufacturer.

January 13, 2013, 06:21 PM
Run a piece of brass through the sizing die and measure the ID of the neck.

January 13, 2013, 06:24 PM
What brass are you using? This happens to me when I'm using Federal brass, but not Winchester or Remington. I just hold them steady and crimp.

January 13, 2013, 06:38 PM
t's not normal - you don't have enough neck tension.


January 13, 2013, 07:27 PM
I'm using Federal brass and Lee Pacesetter dies.

I've set some at OAL of 3.260" and those are fine.

The neck id is .309-.310 on the cases I have measured.

I have some Rem and Win cases I could try also.

January 13, 2013, 07:39 PM
Your neck ID should be at minimum .002 smaller than bullet diameter. Preferrably more than that. You are coming out over bullet diameter. You need to check the expander ball. You can polish it down some, but I'm not sure about taking it down that much. Maybe someone else can chime in.

January 13, 2013, 07:43 PM
If the neck id is actually 309-310 then the bullets should just fall through. If you're using a calipers measure the bullets as well and compare. If the calipers are reasonable accurate a comparative reading should help. Speaking only for myself most of the 30 cal. jacketed bullets measure .308-.3085 and I "like" to keep the necks at .305-.306. If measuring seems to indicate everything should be okay then part of the problem may well be work hardened necks. A hard neck will not "take" the size and will spring back to it's previous dimension much more.

January 13, 2013, 08:37 PM
The bullets are measuring .3085"

Rechecked some of the Federal brass and .3085-.310. The bullets are not falling through.

These are all once fired brass.

I checked my Rem brass and it's measuring .308.

Looks like i'll resize a few of the FC brass and see if the id changes. May just put them aside and work with the Rem brass.

January 13, 2013, 08:52 PM
Check the OD of your sizer ball. Sounds like you have a wrong size expander. Would not be the first.

January 13, 2013, 09:05 PM
Sizer ball od is .3085.

January 13, 2013, 10:51 PM
Sounds like you are crimping them either intentionally, or unintentionally, and that the die is creating too much crimp, which will cause that syndrome. When bottle neck cartridges get over crimped it buckles the mouth and or neck. I've seen some that the bullet would spin in the neck, and some that could be pulled out of the neck but not pushed in beyond a certain point.


January 13, 2013, 11:33 PM
It sounds to me like you got an expander for European .30 cal which is slightly larger than our .308. My .308 expanders measure closer to .306; my calipers aren't super precise but the expanders are definitely slightly smaller than a .308 bullet.

I'd call Lee and have them send you a replacement expander.

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