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Need new case trimmer, ideas?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Kachok, Mar 2, 2013.

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  1. rondog

    rondog Member

    Jun 29, 2007
    I "think" you can just buy more cutter heads, set them up for different calibers, and then swap them out. But they're not cheap. Typical way to do it is to just relocate the carbide cutting insert in the head and reclamp it. I'm not positive of all this, my Giraud is boxed up and stashed away at the moment.

    Only thing I'm positive of is that it's a HELLUVA good way to trim, bevel and chamfer a whole bunch of .223 brass! Next up is a couple bucketfuls of .30-06, so I'll be getting familiar with the caliber changing procedure soon.
  2. silicosys4

    silicosys4 Member

    Jun 29, 2012

    When I'm trimming .308 LC brass, I trim, debur, decrimp the primer pocket, and clean up the primer pocket. I haven't had the motor bog down on me, it seems strong enough that it wouldn't be a problem. I can do probably about 500-600 cases an hour. Its pretty easy to set up, but it's a production machine meant for high volume, and if I set it to trim to 2.005 trim length, say, it will be anywhere from 2.004 to 2.007.
  3. scottishkat

    scottishkat Member

    Jan 29, 2013
    Don't buy a redding 2400 really bad purchase for me. After that I bought the wilson trimmer from sinclair upgraded later with the battery drill chuck works good when I've got a lot to trim.
  4. Cleftwynd

    Cleftwynd Member

    Jan 7, 2011
    The RCBS trim pro is far better than the redding 2400, shame on Redding for even marketing that POS.
  5. gab909

    gab909 Member

    Jul 21, 2010
    Just got my CTS in the mail. Bought it on EBay on Wednesday. I ruined one piece of brass setting it up. Ran through 20 in a little over a minute. Wow, I wish I would have bought one a while ago. If I ever find some 30 cal boolits, I will have to purchase one in 308 also.
  6. HighExpert

    HighExpert Member

    May 30, 2010
    Possum Hollow all the way.
  7. Trent

    Trent Resident Wiseguy

    Dec 6, 2010
    I'll toss my hat in the ring, RCBS trim pro, with the 3-way cutter.

    Superb little machine.
  8. Rat Robb

    Rat Robb Member

    Dec 8, 2008
    The WFT is a great trimmer, as long as you full length resize the brass. I resize only the neck on my .308 and found it to be useless. If it were indexed off of the extractor groove/rim, it'd be awesome. Guess I'll have to design that myself.

    I have realized the search for the perfect trimmer sucks, lol

  9. TBH

    TBH Member

    Mar 22, 2011
    What about Dillon's 1200 trimmer. I use a Redding trimmer with a18 volt drill. Would love something more accurate. Watched a video on the Dillon and it looked sweet.
  10. OldTex

    OldTex Member

    Feb 1, 2012
    My 30+ history of trimmers: I started with an RCBS crank trimmer, an old style they don't make anymore. It worked fine for the small quantity of brass I could afford back then. But when I got my first big sack of once-fired LC in .223, I knew that crank wouldn't cut it anymore. I rigged my own converter to turn that trimmer off an electric drill. That worked fine at first but the locking mechanism that set the length wasn't made for powered use and it tended to slip, making my cases shorter than I originally set the machine for.

    Then I tried the little Lee trimmers. Several things: The cutters are cheap (what do you expect for under $10?) and get dull real fast. Bigger problem: The caliber-specific cutters set their length by using a pin that runs down through the primer hole and indexes off the shell-holder base. When you start doing volume trimming with a drill on the cutter end, that pin will drill a little pit into the shell-holder base, thus shortening your cases more and more as the pit gets deeper. After going through several bases, the Lee trimmer went into the trash. (Besides, you couldn't adjust your length.)

    After trying another crank style or two, I bit the bullet and bought a Gracey (they were about $75 cheaper back then). I now have three of them. They are a PITA to adjust when you change calibers (thus three of them for my main calibers) but you get the knack after a while. They chamfer and deburr at the same time they trim. It's like sticking the case into a pencil sharpener - about 3-4 seconds and you're done. You're not stuck with some pre-set length either, you can set it at whatever makes you happy (there's nothing magic about the 'trim to' length - just a way to shave off more than needed, especially if you trim after every firing to keep things consistent case to case).

    Last year I bought a Giraud. It is fancier and 'slicker' that the Gracey by far, and it has some advantages and some disadvantages. The main thing I don't like about the Giraud (other than the price) is that it uses a single V-shaped cutter, and that cutter leaves a sharp knife edge on the lip of the case mouth - something I was always taught to avoid - and isn't a proper cut the main purpose of a high-dollar trimmer?. The Gracey has two cutter blades and you can adjust those blades to get a flat lip on the case mouth, 'flat' except for the amount of chamfer and deburring you want. You can also adjust the blades when switching between thinner-walled cases or fatter-walled cases (like Win .308 at 0.011 to LC at 0.016 in neck wall thickness). You can't do that with the Giraud; it just gives you a thicker knife blade.

    There are more pros and cons between the two powered machines. The Giraud is really nicer in many respects than the older, more crude Gracey design. But I can't stop using the Graceys. If I were a machinist, I would build a Gracey-type cutter head that would fit on the Giraud. There's no reason why it can't be done. Now that would be the best of both worlds. And oh yeah, something to quiet that screeching noise the Giraud makes. The Gracey runs almost silently. (But the Gracey also tends to throw oil out into your table.) And the Giraud is just as hard to adjust for a new caliber as the Gracey. The instructions tell you that several cases will need to be sacrificed in that process. The Gracey is much easier to adjust for case length.

    For the oddball calibers that I don't shoot much, I just use a Wilson trimmer from Sinclair with a drill adapter. The cost and hassle of setting up a Gracey or Giraud isn't worth it for just a few cases. And the Wilson has shell-holders for those odd calibers without a shoulder, like 30 carbine or 45-70 (although those rarely need trimming).

    I could talk more about the Gracey vs Giraud comparison, but I figure your eyes have glazed over already. I've never tried some of the other trimmers on the market today, like that World's Best Trimmer.
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2013
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