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Having a slight problem with my new .40 seater die...

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by ny32182, Oct 25, 2009.

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  1. ny32182

    ny32182 Member

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    The die is the seater from a brand new 3 die Hornady set. I have this same brand of dies in 5 calibers now, and this is the first time I've seen it. I was loading up my first batch of .40 this morning and was running into the following problem:

    Sometimes after retracting the finished round after seating a bullet, the guide sleeve would drop back to its bottom resting position, and would then become stuck in the down position. No amount of vertical pressure from a new case, or pressing with my finger would move it. Normally it is a free-moving piece. I am 99.9% sure that the cause is that the seater stem (the piece that actually presses the bullet into the case) was getting stuck at the top of its travel, somehow getting cocked ever so slightly sideways, and required side to side giggling of the guide sleeve to let it drop back down. After that the die would operate normally again.

    I took out the seater stem, and polished the outter bottom rim where it first contacts the guide sleeve with 600 grit sandpaper. It seems to have helped some, but I still got it stuck a couple times in post-polish testing.

    Eyeing my press, it is probably not mounted perfectly square to the ground (it is on a now well-used Workmate), and I'm sure that is not helping matters, but by the same token, I've never had this happen on any of the other calibers.

    Has anyone ever had a problem like this with this die set? Will a better (more square) bench fix it, or is it likely that something is really screwed with this seater die? Thanks,
     
  2. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    Occasionally the stem can get above the sleeve and hang things up in the Hornady pistol seater dies. I like them though. It rarely happens. I have done like you have. Slightly chamfered the leading edge of the stems and polished them on mine. Hasn't happened in some time. It was just one caliber that used to do it, but I can't remember which one. Straight up and down has got to be good for a gravity feed piece.
     
  3. ny32182

    ny32182 Member

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    I guess my next step will be to polish the top edge of the guide sleeve. It already has a pretty good chamfer from the factory.
     
  4. loadedround

    loadedround Member

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    Why not do the logical thing and call Hornady to request a replacement. The one time I had called them they were very helpful and replaced my seating stem with a different style. Just a (free) thought. :)
     
  5. ny32182

    ny32182 Member

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    That will definitely be step #3. :) Hornady did take care of me the one time I've had to call them so far for a bent zip spindle; they send me a new one and a new .223 expander and a couple new pins for free.
     
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