File trim dies

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by JackSprat, Nov 29, 2016.

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  1. JackSprat

    JackSprat Member

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    I was looking at dies on Ebay,and stumbled onto a file trim die.
    I didn't even know they existed,but they seem pretty handy,and real quick..I figure they probably have a drawback because it seems they arn't a popular method of case trimming..Why do more people not use them?
     
  2. ironworkerwill

    ironworkerwill Member

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    The mandrel type and lathe type won't make a mess on your presss. It's not multi caliber.
     
  3. Grumulkin

    Grumulkin Member

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    I sometimes use them for smaller batches and like them. They give very consistent case lengths but are slower than some other methods.
     
  4. JackSprat

    JackSprat Member

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    I figured they may be a little messy.I may buy one off Ebay in 223 one of these days...Thanks Folks
     
  5. fguffey

    fguffey member

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    Jack Sprat, I have a trim/form die for 'almost' every chamber I load for. My opinion, the trim die is one of the most accurate ways to trim cases. And then there is the form part of the die; every form die I have has been paid for itself. Again, if I had one form die it would be the 308 W form/trim die, if I only had two the second would be the 243 W form/trim die. I have at least 14 form/trim dies, for me there is no way a case can cost me more than .15¢ each.

    F. Guffey
     
  6. cfullgraf

    cfullgraf Member

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    Yep.

    I have a few trim dies, most for hand gun cases. It is easier to get uniform results over other trim methods but the trim rate is a bit slower.

    It is easier on the hands and fingers while trying to keep the case from spinning during the trimming.

    The brass shavings are easy to clean up with a vacuum and a soft brush.
     
  7. Nappers

    Nappers Member

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    My dad gave me a new one for my 30.06, he was smiling. He knew someday I would buy a case trimmer, but that trim die works great and I have a file only for that purpose. I still use it!
     
  8. Enkiduthewildman

    Enkiduthewildman Member

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    I have an RCBS trim die in .223. It may be a defective one, but it doesn't trim the neck square to the case. I bought Hornady rotary trimmer.
     
  9. JT-AR-MG42

    JT-AR-MG42 Member

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    Very useful when forming cases -8mm from '06.
    I just rough hacksaw off the protruding long neck and final trim on the Wilson.
    It is a messy process, so I use a rockchucker mounted on a portable
    stand in the garage.

    JT
     
  10. pert near

    pert near Member

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    As is obvious, trim dies are not a high-volume case trimming solution. But if you are just doing a few, they are handy & fast. No adjustments or calipers needed. Just file, deburr inside neck while still in the die & remove & deburr outside. I use a case prepped in my trim die to quickly set-up the length on my crank trimmer.
     
  11. JackSprat

    JackSprat Member

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    Thanks to you all for the good info..I'll go ahead and order one for 223,and will keep an Eye on Ebay for good deals on other caliber ones that I load for.
     
  12. Dog Soldier

    Dog Soldier member

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    The file trim die was your only choice for trimming brass. The little lath type trimers were scarce and expensive back then. Maybe just my foggy memory, but it seems the trim die is a more accurate system.:)
     
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  13. entropy

    entropy Member

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    I prefer trim dies; never used the other type, for the reason Dog Soldier mentions.
     
  14. hdwhit

    hdwhit Member

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    • They're slow.
    • Some, like the one for 5.7mm Johnson are an integral part of the case forming process and so require the case to be lubricated.
    • You really should invert and shake the case after use to insure the filing are emptied out.
    • Filings get all over the press.
    • You have to make sure you have the file square against the surface of the die to get a square case mouth.
    • You have to make sure you don't handle the file too aggressively othewise you'll be replacing the file.
    Of course if someone is only doing a few cases getting ready for the hunting season (rather than a day at the range expending ammunition like they're trying to create an EPA Superfund site) then they are easy to use, simple, foolproof, accurate and they don't add appreciably to the time required to produce those few rounds.

    My Forster case trimmer is set up for .223 cases and it's not the easies thing in the world to get adjusted for a new caliber so I'll often use a trim die for other calibers if I'm only loading a few. And as mentioned above, I have to use it with my 5.7mm Johnson cases since it is an integral part of forming the case.
     
  15. kwg020

    kwg020 Member

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    I have a trim die for almost all of my calibers. I check length, file to length and I can even fix a squashed shoulder if it's not squashed too much. I also use them to make .243 out of a 7.62x51 Nato case. I'd be lost without them for a number of reasons.
     
  16. Jesse Heywood

    Jesse Heywood Member

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    One key to extending the life of your files is a dry lubrication. Use welding soap stone chalk (available at Lowes, Harbor Fright, & such) to cover the teeth. With nonferrous metals it keeps the teeth from getting filled with the soft metal filings.
     

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  17. entropy

    entropy Member

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    Or you could card it out the old fashioned way.
     
  18. Tilos

    Tilos Member

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    I once used a file/trim die for making 30 Herret brass from 30-30 or 225 Winchester.

    I'd put a washer over the neck, cut it with a hacksaw, remove the washer and file it to the die.

    I got a lot of neck splits until I finished up the ends with scotch brite in a twisting motion.

    It seems the tool marks from the file, across the case end could become a weak point for splits to start.
    :)
     
  19. Jesse Heywood

    Jesse Heywood Member

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    I'm a big believer in using cards. Problem is that nonferrous metals plug the teeth quickly and are difficult to card. Using soap stone is an old machinist's trick that keeps the teeth from getting plugged. One stick will lube a bunch of files for little money and a lot less effort.
     
  20. savanahsdad

    savanahsdad Member

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    Just steel a peace of sidewalk chalk from the kids . That will keep the file clean ☺
     
  21. Stony

    Stony Member

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    I've used different kinds of trimmers for years, but sort of always preferred the file dies. They are sure getting expensive though.
     
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