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Weird Problem With Lee Classic Turret Press

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by delta5, Jan 8, 2009.

  1. delta5

    delta5 Well-Known Member

    Hey guys,

    Im having a problem with my Lee classic turret press. When I try to reload .308, the primer catches on the bottom of the shellholder. I am using CCI large rifle primers, part no. 0011 and the no. 2 lee shellholder. When the ram comes down and the primer arm tilts over and goes up into the bottom of the shellholder, it tilts over too late, and the primer anvil catches the bottom of the shellholder. It looks like either the space between the two locator bumps is too low, or the primer arms are not in spec, or the primers are too tall. Lee just sent me a brand new in box press, and its still doing this. I just broke off the cupholder from the brand new primer arm. I just spoke to Pat at Lee Precision, the engineer that designed the thing, and he is clueless. I sent the original press back last week, but I dont know what they found. Im not interested in sending this back again at my cost, so when I receive another replacement arm, this new press might be for sale, so I can buy an RCBS instead. Anyone have any ideas?
  2. flashhole

    flashhole Well-Known Member

    Did you try a different shell holder?
  3. jerkface11

    jerkface11 Well-Known Member

    Mine used to hang up like that sometimes. Not to the point that things would break though. I solved the problem with a Forster Co-Ax.
  4. Daniel1120

    Daniel1120 Well-Known Member

    Mine did that too. Get a hot glue gun and put a bead of glue on the press where the primer arm hits. Should cause the arm to move a little sooner and prevent any primers from snagging.
  5. tkcomer

    tkcomer Well-Known Member

    Make sure the slot in the ram that the primer arm rides in is lined up correctly. The ram can move to one side and the primer arm will actually hit on one of two "bumps" of the base before it's ready to tilt in. Just stick a big screwdriver in there and adjust it left or right as needed. Worked for me.
  6. delta5

    delta5 Well-Known Member

    Thats what i am thinking. Sloppy machine work...
  7. Oldcoyote

    Oldcoyote Well-Known Member

    This may be different. When using Lee shellholders on the CTP, the primer arm would catch in the shellholder hole and not drop back out (so I could insert a new primer). I used a Redding shellholder, which has a larger hole, and it fixed the problem.
  8. delta5

    delta5 Well-Known Member

    The problem with this press is that the anvil of the primer catches on the bottom edge of the shellholder as the primer arm rocks over. Its rocking over too late in the downward motion of the ram.
  9. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Well-Known Member

    I too have had problems like that but not to the point of breaking something. It seems to come and go. What you need to do is slow down when it happens and maybe even aid the arm into place before you try and seat the primer. Since you know there's a slight misalignment don't force it to the point it breaks.
  10. delta5

    delta5 Well-Known Member

    Well, it looks to me like poor machine work and/or sloppy specs. Im not going to jury-rig a brand new press to make it work correctly. Lee is going to have to make this right somehow. There is no excuse for this to be doing this. This is supposed to be a first class press.
  11. cracked butt

    cracked butt Well-Known Member

    I had a problem similar to this when I frist got my press, one of the priming arms would work and the other wouldn't/

    Take the priming arm out, and run a jewellers file or fine grit sandpaper over all of the edges of the priming arm to remove any burs. I found that there was a little resisntance in mine that upset the timing and the arm would hang up- deburring it fixed the problem.

    If you use Lee suff alot, you need to keep small files, crocus cloth, and other finishing tools handy. Lee makes cheap stuff that works well most of the time, but sometimes it requires the owner to do the last 0.5% of the finishing work on the tool to make it work properly.
  12. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

    I started using a RCBS hand primer because of issues with my Projector and priming when it was new many moons ago. It drove me nuts priming on it.

    Although the newer shell plates pretty much fixed that, I continue to hand prime. I think the hand primer does a better, more consistent job seating primers anyway.

    I tumble the cases, then run them all through the Projector sizing and decapping them. Then I hand prime. Then I run them all through again loading them. Without the sizer and priming in the mix it goes faster, more smoothly, and it helps get more consistent O.A.L.'s as well.

    This is how I have settled on loading pistol calibers, and it works well for me. :)
  13. Redhat

    Redhat Member.


    Did you try the other lever prime arm and did it work properly? If it does I would say a problem with the lever priime arm, if not the press has issues. Also, this may sound stupid, but are you sure you had it inserted all the way into the slot on the ram?

    Hope you get your problems fixed so you can start reloading.
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2009
  14. The Bushmaster

    The Bushmaster Well-Known Member

    I was wondering why I prime on a seperate single stage press using a Lee Auto Prime II. Never liked the priming arms. Requires you to handle each primer. Stupid idea. My opinion of course.
  15. benzuncle

    benzuncle Well-Known Member

    I have the same problem with the primer arm on occasion. I rest my index finger under the primer arm as the ram is coming down. This nudges it forward ahead of the downcoming ram. Works for me. I'm not willing to trash the whole system because of something so trivial. The primer system and the safety prime work great together. I did add a washer under the safety prime bracket to bump it up a tad. Big deal. I have an American made press that works just fine. And I'm not willing to spend a lot more money to purchase a system that builds ammo that is no more accurate. The Loadmaster videos site has a section on Lee Turrets where this has been discussed. I hope you resolve your problem to your satisfaction.
  16. delta5

    delta5 Well-Known Member

    If the base was steel instead of cast iron, a screw with a small head in between the locator bumps would fix this problem. But since the base is cast iron, im not sure how I am going to fix this yet. Lee should be addressing this problem by now, I would think. This is a good system, and it would be perfect if this adjustment was made. I dont believe that I am the only customer that has noticed this.
  17. L_10_shooter

    L_10_shooter Active Member

    Use a single stage to prep cases and the turret to load the powder and bullet.
  18. coloradokevin

    coloradokevin Well-Known Member

    This problem is also my only complaint with my Lee Classic Turret. I love the press otherwise, and it works great for the most part.

    But, when I attempt to prime I get the same jam that so many of you have described. I've just grown used to it, but I still think that it needs to be improved by Lee.
  19. The Bushmaster

    The Bushmaster Well-Known Member

    They have been tapping screw threads in cast iron ever sense the internal combustion engine was invented. If a screw would solve your problem I see no reason why you can't do the machining. As I said before. Even with the new priming system I will continue to use my Auto prime II on a single stage. Even when I replace my old three hole turret in a couple of months (tax return) with a Lee Classic Cast Turret...
  20. green country shooter

    green country shooter Well-Known Member

    I also use a hand primer now. The primer set up on the turret press is just not reliable enough for me.

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