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Crimp .223

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by coondogger, Jan 21, 2020.

  1. coondogger

    coondogger Member

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    I load a fair amount of .223. Most is for a bolt action rifle; none of it do I crimp. But what about use in an AR-15? Should that be at the very least, taper crimped?


    I've noticed that only Redding makes a factory taper crimp die for .223. I'm assuming that it would be compatible with a Lee single stage press and I've been thinking of getting one. Would I be wasting my time and money?
     
  2. jak67429

    jak67429 Member

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    I go through over 2000 223 in a year through both bolt guns and ar's. I never crimp any of them. I have never had any issues with bullets moving in the case either. Do not crimp any bullet that does not have a crimp grove. I also don't flair the mouth of my cases, if you do then just take the flare out.
     
  3. GW Staar

    GW Staar Member

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    Well, one usually takes the flare out with a taper crimp die. RCBS AR sets come with a taper crimp die as well.

    I like to use an "M" die neck expander after sizing with a Gold Medal die, minus the expander. I like the 1/16" deep step the "M" die makes, allowing my bullet feeder to drop bullets in the stepped (not flared) neck which then holds it vertical (no wobble or leaning) while the progressive goes to the seater. I seat, then use a taper crimper to smooth the neck against the bullet.

    With a single stage press and an ordinary sizer, inside chamfer with a chamfer/deburring tool is usually is enough, unless you use lead bullets....then an "M" style expander and taper crimper is the way to go.
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2020
  4. Blue68f100

    Blue68f100 Member

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    I do not crimp any of my ammo for my AR's. What I do though is use a 0.003" min interface fit. Most dies are setup for 0.002" smaller than the bullet size, expander. I use bushing dies and don't use the internal expander. Never had a problem with well over 10k rounds shot out of multiple AR's.
     
  5. jmorris

    jmorris Member

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    I don’t crimp any bullets that do not have a cannelure, AR or any other semiauto rifle are not exceptions. If they do have a cannelure, I might.

    I also don’t flare bottle neck cases to seat a bullet in them.
     
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  6. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator Staff Member

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    Blasting ammo yes, other stuff, no.
     
  7. clone

    clone Member

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    All the years I have been loading for 223, I have never flared a one. No crimp either. If the bullet moves there is a problem with the sizing die or the bullet itself.
     
  8. coondogger

    coondogger Member

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    Thanks for all the input. It pretty much reinforced what I already suspected.
     
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  9. bihj

    bihj Member

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    I don't crimp 223/5.56 in any of my AR's or bolt rifles.
     
  10. 1KPerDay

    1KPerDay Member

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    I only flare if using lead bullets.
     
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  11. TheDomFather

    TheDomFather Member

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    Like much of the info above. I only crimp with bullets that have a cannelure. I never flare the neck either (what is the point of doing this) If you have a sizing die that sets the proper neck tension it shouldnt be needed. I do prefer the Lee factory crimp dies over a taper crimp die. If your cases are all trimmed to the same length taper crimp works fine. if they are varying lengths ( ie: you dont trim them all every time to the same length your crimp amount will vary with a taper crimp die, it will not vary with a lee factory crimp die and they are cheap too.

    Happy Shooting!
    Dom
     
  12. NR53

    NR53 Member

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    I lightly crimp all my AR rounds with the Lee factory crimp die, cannelure or not.
     
  13. Bartojc

    Bartojc Member

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    I lightly crimp with a factory crimp die for AR ammo. Not exactly sure why, it seemed like the right thing to do when I started loading for AR and I never changed. Other bottleneck rifle no crimp used.

    -Jeff
     
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  14. Varminterror

    Varminterror Member

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    One usually does not (and absolutely should not) have any flare in a bottleneck rifle cartridge. Ever.
     
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  15. Varminterror

    Varminterror Member

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    No crimp needed for 223/5.56, even in an AR. If you have a rot-gut Mil-Spec carbine which doesn’t feed properly, you may get bullet set back, but an AR should not do this if properly tuned.
     
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  16. Typetwelve

    Typetwelve Member

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    I will admit that I haven't reloaded 223 for very long...but so far, I have had some great success with my reloads. I'm loading for my attempt at "match" AR ammo using Sierra Match King projectiles. I do not flare the casing nor do I crimp. I resize, charge, and press in the projectile. All are nice and tight, all have shot perfectly.
     
  17. 1KPerDay

    1KPerDay Member

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    EVER? Even for loading plain base lead pills?
     
  18. Varminterror

    Varminterror Member

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    I don’t. I also don’t find enough joy in shooting lead in 223/5.56 to do so any more either.
     
  19. AJC1

    AJC1 Member

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    You went to far and are wrong now. Lead bullets need flare.
     
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  20. 1KPerDay

    1KPerDay Member

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    Well you said ABSOLUTELY SHOULD NOT and EVER for any bottleneck cartridge... not just talking .223.
    Whatever
     
  21. Varminterror

    Varminterror Member

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    ok, fine, let me clarify.

    I don’t flare for lead in bottleneck cartridges. And don’t enjoy shooting lead in bottlenecks enough to pursue it any longer either. 223 or otherwise. I cast and shot thousands upon thousands of lead pills in 7x57 and 30-06 for a long time, no flare, no crimp, just appropriately sized necks. Maybe others don’t chamfer sufficiently to let the bullet start seating? Dunno’, don’t care. I don’t flare bottleneck cartridges. Ever.
     
  22. GW Staar

    GW Staar Member

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    For me personally flares don't apply.....having NEVER flared one, personally. However in the 45 years I'm been reloading, I've noticed many do do it to load lead "boolits", since the usual chamfer isn't enough to prevent scraping lead off on the way in. The Lyman "M" die was created as a better way. While I've yet to load my first lead rifle bullet, much preferring jackets, I understand the monetary reason for the practice.

    The "other reason" some might think they want to flare is using a bullet feeder. I think the "M" die is the better idea here too, for keeping bullets upright around a progressive merry-go-round. Instead of a flare the first 1/16" of the neck is expanded just a little more, making a pocket for the bullet base to rest in. (such doesn't work as well for boat tails, nor usually needed). Any crimp I personally do is just to straighten and firm such. If you've never loaded rifle on a progressive with a bullet feeder, I can't see where you would ever need to even use an "M" die on jacketed bullets.

    I might add....never tried it yet, but I can see, on a boat tail shape, that a slight flare might stabilize that base better on a progressive merry-go-round than an "M" die pocket could. Makes sense to me.

    BTW......Am I right in thinking not all Lee Factory Crimp Dies are designed the same? Some are more like a taper crimp and adjustable, some are not....more a collet pinch?
     
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2020
  23. jmorris

    jmorris Member

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    I load my cast and coated bullets in a few bottle neck rounds but I still don’t flare them a chamfer and seat them straight is all I do.

    If one can seat the bullet straight it makes a big difference even if they don’t chamfer. This is how little flare I use for my cast and coated 45 acp bullets without chamfering. It’s not even visually noticeable that the mouth is slightly opened up.

    248AB4F9-390E-4E60-B18E-0DB544834B40.jpeg

    All I need at that point is a chamfer that is, at the end, wider than the bullet by the amount of neck tension there is going to be.

    That said, my coating is fairly durable, I test them by smacking one with a sledge hammer, it the coating stays put, it’s good to go.

    C99D08CF-987B-4B29-BB73-AC34233603CE.jpeg
     
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2020
  24. Shanghai McCoy

    Shanghai McCoy Member

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    When I was first getting into reloading my mentor told me "Always crimp if it has a cannelure", so in his memory, I still do.
    YMMV...
     
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  25. GW Staar

    GW Staar Member

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    The O.P. is talking .223 rifle, but most still applies. The "M" die makes it easier with the little bullets. RCBS included one with their new tube rifle bullet feeder. Makes the bullets stick vertically on the merry-go-round really well. The video was just a test temporarily placed on my Rock Chucker.

    The bullet isn't seated just set in that "M" pocket ready for the merry-go-round to the seater.

     
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