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Bullets very loose in neck after resizing

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Redbearded1, Feb 10, 2012.

  1. Redbearded1

    Redbearded1 Member

    Hey folks I relatively new to reloading and need some help.

    I just got a 30-06 savage and started reloading for it. The Im using Lee reloading equipment, Hornady and federal brass, Hornady 165 gr. sst and gmx bullets. The problem Im having is after neck sizing the cases, The neck is too big and bullets slide right in by hand. The strange thing is that not every case is like this. Ive followed the directions for setting up the die as far as best I could but Never felt the " cam over " at the top of stroke like I read I should feel.

    This is my second set of 30-06 dies from lee. The first set was defective and mangled every case I tried to size. I would really appreciate any help I could get from you veteren reloaders out there.

    BADUNAME37 Well-Known Member

    Sorry, I cannot help you, I use all RCBS dies.
    Been loading over 30 years and have NEVER had what you described happen, never.
  3. Scimmia

    Scimmia Well-Known Member

    So you're using a Lee collet neck sizing die? If so, it sounds like you either aren't pressing on the handle hard enough or you don't have the die screwed in far enough. Don't press too hard or you'll strip the cap, but you should see the collet go up into the die then feel it stop as it contacts the mandrel.
  4. Redbearded1

    Redbearded1 Member

    Yes it is a collet neck sizing die. I screwed the die in until it touched the case holder, Then another full turn. And if I press any harder on the ram My bench is gonna come apart. Thats whats baffling me, I followed directions to a t, and it still isnt right.
  5. Redbearded1

    Redbearded1 Member

    Thanks buddy, Thats really friggin helpful. Thanks for taking the time to put your 2 cents in.
  6. Scimmia

    Scimmia Well-Known Member

    Yeah, directions are not Lee's strong suit. The collet dies really need to be adjusted by feel, not just a number of turns. If you're pressing hard enough that you're afraid for your bench and the cap of the die didn't pop off, you must be hitting the stops on the press. For this die, you don't want it to hit the stops. Screw the die in further, but don't press that hard! Lee says 25 lb of force, which isn't that much. Like I said, you'll see the collet going into the die then feel it stop.
  7. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf member

    Now I'm skeered. I got a LEE collet for .223 but haven't used it yet.
  8. Scimmia

    Scimmia Well-Known Member

    No reason to be "skeered" :D.

    The collet dies have a bit of a learning curve, but as long as you remember to not press too hard, you'll be fine. If you do press too hard, the threads on the cap will strip and you'll need a new cap, that's all. You really can feel what's happening if you pay attention.
  9. gamestalker

    gamestalker member

    Alrighty then! No problem, we can get you up and running in no time.
    Start by making sure you have the right die. It should have a depriming pin that extends approximately 3/8" from the die mouth.

    First snap the shell holder in the ram and then raise the ram to full extended top postion. Now thread your resizing die or neck size die in to the press until it touches the shell holder. Now lower the ram completely and thread the die in another 1/4 turn. Of course, make sure the neck is lubed inside and outside. Don't concern yourself about the cam over thing, especially since your using a neck die. All you want to do is just be sure the ram at full extension it making positive contact with the die, yet doesn't stop the ram from completing the full stroke. You should now have a properely neck sized case.
  10. Redbearded1

    Redbearded1 Member

    Yeah it didn't help that the full length sizing die part or the directions are unusable because the printed the directions crooked on the paper and half of them got cut off. I'm not super impressed with these lee dies But i havent had troubles with my others and only a poor craftsman blames his tools. Thanks for your help. I'll try that out tomorrow and see if it works.
  11. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf member

    Saweet! I hope..:D

    OP, I got nothing for you but hope.
  12. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf member

    It still sounds "skeery".. bending your bench just neck sizing. Does not seem logical. Anyway.. subscribed.
  13. Scimmia

    Scimmia Well-Known Member

    Careful, the instructions gamestalker gave are for normal neck sizing dies or full length dies, not for collet dies.
  14. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf member

    OK. I'm going to jam the slug so far up the.. I'm not going to size at all and go all Schuetzen style.
  15. P-32

    P-32 Well-Known Member

    I would get a full length size die and use it untill you've reloaded some. You can neck size with a F/L die too. You just don't run the case all the way up. You will need to F/L size once in awhile any ways.
  16. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

    Just call Lee. They will get you going. And if there is a problem, they will make it right. I have all kinds of dies from all kinds of makers, and they all work.
  17. Grumulkin

    Grumulkin Well-Known Member

    You're problem is the reason I hardly ever use Lee Collet Dies any longer. It's a very common problem with them. I have heard, though I've never done it my self, that if you remove a few thousandths of an inch from the neck sizing mandrel it will allow adequate neck sizing. The way to do that is to take the die apart, put the mandrel in a drill or on a lathe and remove some metal with some very fine grit sand paper.

    Despite Lee's hooting and tooting about the great accuracy benefits of using Lee Collet Dies, it ain't always so. In a couple of cartridges I load for, cases sized with that die produced less accurate loads than did cases full length sized or sized with the usual neck sizing dies.
  18. rsrocket1

    rsrocket1 Well-Known Member

    Unscrew the top cap off. Take out the mandrel and measure it. My mandrel measures 0.3055" and I get perfect neck tension with all my .308 type bullets.

    You might also take out the sizing collet thingy and inspect it to make sure there isn't anything trapped in any of the slots or burrs that prevent the petals from closing all the way in.
  19. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

    Either the collet is to short, or the body is too long, or the mandrel is too big. I guess the diameter could be off on the collet and/or body as well. Call Lee.
  20. 918v

    918v Well-Known Member


    You do not lube the case neck. This is a collet did, not a regular neck die.

    Now, this is the way I set up my die. The reason I do it this way is because the collet die is case neck thickness dependent- the thicker the neck the more pressure the die exerts on the brass if you set it up to cam over:

    Lower the ram. Screw the die in way past the cam over point. This will also put the shellholder and the case outside the maximum leverage window of the press. Now, stick a case in the shell holder, raise the ram and observe the shellholder touch the collet sticking out of the bottom of the die. Apply pressure with the lever. Put your shoulder into it. Imagine the collet squeezing the case walls against the mandrel. Remove the case. It should now take the bullet and hold it tight. If not, you may have an 8mm mandrel in the die and should replace it with a 30 cal. Mistakes happen.

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