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Die set for .223 REM ?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by kb2, Jan 21, 2010.

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  1. kb2

    kb2 Member

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    Are there any strong opinions out there regarding die sets for .223 REM on a progressive? I have a Hornady LNL-AP. I expect to shoot hornady bullets in HP or SP, fired from an AR15 (shooting 2000-3000 rounds per year).

    I would automatically assume Hornady dies (I've been very happy with their .45 ACP dies), but the .223 die set has poor reviews on Midway (early reviews were good, but later reviews were much worse).

    Thanks!
     
  2. Historian

    Historian Member

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    Hi Kb,

    Welcome to THR Reloading Forum. I have been loading .223 for several years now and, after much trial and error, I settled on Forster dies. The seating die is really just about the best you can buy and the sizing die is easy to set up. They're a little more expensive but they have made a noticable improvement in the accuracy of my AR. Best of luck and good shooting.

    Historian

    "A general dissolution of principles and manners will more surely overthrow the liberties of America than the whole force of a common enemy."

    Samuel Adams
     
  3. Canuck-IL

    Canuck-IL Member

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    My Hornady 223 dies were fine - I use them for plinking ammo or short line (out to 300 yards) ammo. For 600 yard rounds, I use a Forster.
    /Bryan
     
  4. kb2

    kb2 Member

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    Canuck-IL / Bryan: I'm curious -- why do you use the Forster for the longer-distance rounds only, rather than for all your .223?
     
  5. Seedtick

    Seedtick Member

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    Good question. :confused: Are the Forster dies harder to use for some reason?
    I would think that if they made more accurate rounds for 600 yards they would also do better at 300.

    Am I missing something?

    ST

    :)
     
  6. atblis

    atblis Member

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    I suspect it might be a case of the Hornady dies being setup in a Progressive (LNL maybe?), and the Foresters being used in a single stage.
     
  7. Canuck-IL

    Canuck-IL Member

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    The micrometer die is left set for the single load bullet I use at 600 and it is on a Hornady single stage. The regular dies are adjusted all the time for 52gr, 69s from 2 manufacturers, 75 and 77s from two. The short range stuff is loaded on an L'n'L.
    /B
     
  8. Russt

    Russt Member

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    I use a RCBS X-die on .223 and .308. Once you trim the case the first time that's it. It makes loading on a progressive much easier. I have a LNLAP and load .223, .243, .308, & 30-06 rifle rounds on it. I usually size and deprime in the same stage. Measure all the cases and trim as needed, hand prime, run them back through the press for powder and a bullet. The X-die speeds up the process by not having to trim the case.
     
  9. Seedtick

    Seedtick Member

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    Ah,okay, I get it now. Thanks for the explanation.

    ST

    :)
     
  10. loadedround

    loadedround Member

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    I have been reloading for over 40 years and in my opinion the best dies on the market are those made by Redding. They are a bit more expensive but well worth it in terms of quality.
     
  11. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    The Forster dies are as easy to adjust as any other. I too, only use them for accuracy stuff, but for shooting at any distance. I use something else for blasting/plinking loads with cheap bulk 55 or 62 Gr FMJ bullets. They are not going to be very accurate anyway. If I break out the good bullets, I break out the best die set I have for .223, which is the Forster set I bought many years ago.

    Unless you have a gun and the skill to tell the difference, and are using a high quality bullet your gun likes, and know a bit about reloading for accuracy, any die set will load ammo that will shoot well.

    If I were buying a die set for a very accurate gun using excellent bullets these days, it would be the Forster or the Redding Competition set.
     
  12. kb2

    kb2 Member

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    Ordered!

    OK, after all the feedback I got here, I ordered the Forster die set with micrometer seater from Grafs (they tell me it will ship out today). I opted for the nicer dies because I hate buying twice (once just to get started, then upgrading later -- inevitably I end up spending more in the long run) and I was convinced that there was enough of a difference.

    This is not a brand I had seriously considered before (I don't know why), so thank you all for your feedback!

    --kb2
     
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