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Lee Precision 223 Rem Loader

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Vincent1966, Sep 10, 2013.

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  1. Vincent1966

    Vincent1966 Member

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    Hi,

    I was watching videos on 223 reloading when I ran across this item, a Lee Precision 223 Rem Loader. It seems to be the most basic, yet most economical way (around $35.00) to reload the 223 casings I have. I figure I would learn the process and if it "sticks", I'd move up to better equipment. When I was on a certain web site, there was this message, " Please note: the Classic Lee Loader neck sizes only. This is not recommended for semi, pump and lever action guns." I thought that it might be time to look for something else, but then I noticed that message is on every Lee Precision Loader product, including 9mm. I thought this was odd and that the particular website was just posting that message to cover themselves.

    Has anyone used this product? I am interested in 223 but might eventually reload 9mm, 40 S&W, and 45 ACP.

    Thanks,


    MC
     
  2. Frosty Dave

    Frosty Dave Member

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    I tried (and failed) to use it as a field-duty loading rig for my own fire-formed .223 brass. I never got a round that would chamber in any of 3 different AR-15 barrels.
     
  3. StandingTall

    StandingTall Member

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    That's because it neck-sizes only. The AR-15 platform requires full length sizing.
     
  4. oldpapps

    oldpapps Member

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    Not sure just which LEE tool you are talking about.

    The old 'Wack-A-Mole' Classic is about $27 (at MidwayUSA). If this is what you are talking about, this tool is very basic and can make very suitable loads. It is slow and only sizes the straight wall of a case. Most pistol cases are straight walled (yes some have a taper). Some rifle cases are straight walled but most are bottle necked. On the bottle necked cases, only the short case mouth area (neck) is sized, the straight wall part of the case.

    Over time/number of reloadings, this neck only sizing will fall short and chambering the finished round will come to an end. The case will need to be full length sized. The number of loading before this happens will depend upon case pressures and the chamber being used. The first time/original loading may take the case body over the limit.

    For the pistol rounds you list, this system works well but slowly.
    I have loaded thousand of 38/357 rounds and a fair number of 9MMs with the LEE 'Wack-A-Mole' tool.

    My opinion is this is a good system but not the best. I would opt for a cheap LEE single stage press at $28 (or better would be a stronger Challenger press). You would need to add a set of DIEs (LEE Deluxe $34).
    This can get you started. The head holder and a dipper is included.

    Look a lot before you buy and check several retailers and include shipping and taxes when making your final purchasing choice. LEE stuff is good but there are many other makers out there. Check them also.
     
  5. steve4102

    steve4102 Member

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    You did not actually say in your Original post that you are going to load for a semi-auto, pump or lever gun. If you are, then this set-up will Not work.

    Straight from the Manufacturer, Lee.

    Please note: the Classic Lee Loader neck sizes only. This is not recommended for semi, pump and lever action guns.

    Link.
    http://leeprecision.com/lee-loader-223-rem.html
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2013
  6. Vincent1966

    Vincent1966 Member

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    Steve4102, all of my reloads would be for semi-autos.

    Thanks, gents. I'll keep looking.

    MC
     
  7. splattergun

    splattergun Member

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    For field loading I use the Lee hand press. You can full length size your brass (well lubed) so they can be used in any weapon. It uses the very same dies, shell holders and bushings as my Classic cast bench mounted press. I can, and do, literally transfer the dies from the hand press to the bench press, and vice versa, without the need of any setting adjustments. at less than $38 + dies, it's an inexpensive way to test the waters.

    https://fsreloading.com/lee-precision-breech-lock-hand-press-only-90685.html
     
  8. Bad Flynch

    Bad Flynch Member

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    There was, in the 1970's a product known as the Lee Target Model Loader. This kit had a pound-in sizer like all of the little Lee tools, but also had a piloted neck reamer, with the pilot section also being used for piloted bullet seating. It came with a thumb-type priming tool, too, and a powder scoop.

    That little rig produced exceptionally accurate and straight ammo, some of the best I have ever seen, short of custom benchrest dies for use with an arbor press.

    Great little rig, but it only neck sized and, therefore was not useful for the AR-15 platform.

    L.E.Wilson makes a press-in or pound-in f.l. sizer die and a piloted bullet seater for this caliber. The sizer die will reduce your brass to factory-new dimensions and, therefore, overwork your brass in the long run. Occasional use is OK.
     
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