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Bulging 223 cases during reloading

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Edarms, Nov 17, 2012.

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  1. Edarms

    Edarms Member

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    I have been loading pistol ammo for a while with good success. Recently tried to load 223 and ~ 20% of my cases are bulged just below the neck. It is happening when I try to set the bullet. I have tried several types of lubes and methods from lubing the bottom/side of the bullet to putting a little inside the case opening. Boat tail bullets seen to work better but not always.

    Any tips - do I need different brass (heaver wall)?

    M&P AR15 Sport
    Hornady 55g bullets
    Lee turret press
    Lee dies
    Once fired Remington cases
    Cases trimmed if needed
    The cases will fit into a Wilson gauge but won't feed
     
  2. Ky Larry

    Ky Larry Member

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    After you trim your brass to the proper length, try cutting a slight champfer or bevel on the inside of the case mouth. Lee, Lyman, and several other companies make a tool for this.
     
  3. 243winxb

    243winxb Member

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    The crimp part of the die may be contacting the case mouth. Back the die out. Also, use an expander with your fl die. As said, chamfer the case mouth.
     
  4. rg1

    rg1 Member

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    I agree that the case mouth is possibly contacting the crimp area of the seating die. Put a sized trimmed case in the shellholder and raise the ram and if you can feel any contact your die needs to be backed out about 1 turn. If you're going to crimp it's best to do it in a separate operation. Sounds like you're buckling the case shoulder while seating.
     
  5. redclay

    redclay Member

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    Pistols are much easier to load. A shouldered case is very sensitive. I have ruined lots of them learning how to do it right. Go slow, follow all of the good advise above. I use a Lee Factory die for crimping rifle ammo. As a separate step after bullet is seated, but only rarely, most of the time I don't crimp at all.
    My guns seem to shoot an uncrimped bullets more accurately. Enjoy the ride
     
  6. GLOOB

    GLOOB Member

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    Try comparing the diameter of your bullets to the diameter of your expander. The expander should be about 2 mics smaller. If it's any much smaller than that, there's your problem. And +1 on the chamfer. Even with boat tail bullets, you need a chamfer, IMO, unless you are flaring your cases (in addition to expanding).
     
  7. 918v

    918v Member

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    Back off the die so it doesn't crimp.
     
  8. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    I agree with the posters who say to back off the seater die body (Up) for less crimp. You will have to re-adjust the seater stem down a little to match.

    It doesn't take much to bulge the case at the shoulder. :)

    Welcome to THR
     
  9. Edarms

    Edarms Member

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    Is the expander a separate die from the Lee FL die or should I use another brand die. I will try the adjustments and champfer tool

    Thanks for advice. I must have gotten spoiled during pistol rounds.
     
  10. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    The expander is built into FL dies for bottle necked cases. They do make separate expanders for rifle cases if you wish to use one, but it shouldn't be necessary.

    If you chamfer the inside of the neck, and get the adjustment right, you won't have any problems.

    You might try seating with no crimp at first.
     
  11. hentown

    hentown Member

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    I use the seater that comes with the Lee Collet Die set. It won't crimp. Works for me.
     
  12. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    The Lee "dead length" bullet seater hentown mentioned is a good seater. They generally load very straight ammo, assuming the cases are straight.
     
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