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Seating Boattail Bullets

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by hypnotrader, Jan 26, 2013.

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  1. hypnotrader

    hypnotrader Member

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    Is there any difference in seating boattail bullets vs other bullet types? I have some 150 gr FMJ/BT bullets that I am loading for my M1A. I have seated them and the cannelure seems to be in the right place. However, when I push on the bullet, it goes further in to the case, and the cannelure is no longer visible. Any help would be appreciated. I am full length resizing and trimming to correct length.

    I am using Lee dies, if it matters.
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2013
  2. Jasper1573

    Jasper1573 Member

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    In my experience, BT bullets are easier to seat simply because they sit nicely on the mouth of the brass case. As far as being able to push the bullet into the case with your fingers, maybe the neck tension is the issue. I have not had any problem like this except for a couple of 243 Win rounds that were neck sized. FL sizing shouldn't do that.
     
  3. hueyville

    hueyville Member

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    Do you have your die set up for any crime? Are they all doing.that?
     
  4. hypnotrader

    hypnotrader Member

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    I orignally did not have it set up for crimp, thought that might be the problem. Set it up for crimp and it did the same thing. Lee dies.
     
  5. hueyville

    hueyville Member

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    Military surplus brass? What brand if not? If so, U.S. manufactured or import? Once fired? Loaded a zillion times? Have you had issues with these dies in the past?
     
  6. beatledog7

    beatledog7 Member

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    Insufficient neck tension, either not enough squeeze from the die body when the case enters the die or too much opening from the expander ball as the case leaves the die. No way crimp will ever fix that.

    Or, if other bullets don't do it, perhaps these bullets are smaller in diameter. Have you mic'd them?
     
  7. bobinoregon

    bobinoregon Member

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    I'd be looking at the dies, if you are crimping and still can push the bullet in with your fingers then there is something wrong.
     
  8. hueyville

    hueyville Member

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    +1 to Beetledog as additional crime is not "the fix" for loose bullets. Could be dies, brass not springy enough, etc. Have you done the obvious tasks of measuring bullets, expander die, make sure bunch of case lube from days past haven't turned hard, measure neck inside, outside and thickness. I always start with measuring and math.

    When you size the brass it squeezes it underside, the expander plug expands back to inside specifications. That said, due to springyness of brass after expanding brass will spring some back to a tad.smaller. if your brass is brittle it may not do that. Clean dies, readjust, measure some stuff and try again with a few.
     
  9. USSR

    USSR Member

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    You really didn't need to tell us you're using Lee dies, we knew it. Anybody who has been following the numerous insufficient neck tension threads on this site knows that when it happens, it is always with Lee dies. Obviously, I'm not a fan of Lee dies.

    Don
     
  10. Mike 27

    Mike 27 Member

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    I have many Lee dies and never an issue. The crimp and the boat tail are not your issues. Take your sizer die apart and check cleanliness on the expander, and mic it. I went out and mic'ed a few on my 30 cal dies and the Lee came out at .302 and my RCBS set mic'ed at .304". I have had no issues with either. If they check out you may have a brass issue or projectile problem.
     
  11. hypnotrader

    hypnotrader Member

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    Measured some inside necks and they seem to not be small enough. Some were .3075 etc. I am going to try resizing them. If I have already sized them, do I still need to use case lube when I resize them? Thanks.
     
  12. Hondo 60
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    Hondo 60 Member

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    YES you need to lube otherwise some WILL get stuck
     
  13. Mike 27

    Mike 27 Member

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    If they have lube on them you should be good but better safe than sorry. Don't over do it though.
     
  14. hypnotrader

    hypnotrader Member

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    Can someone explain how they set their resizing dies? I am using the Lee instructions and just want to make sure they are correct.

    Thanks.
     
  15. Mobuck

    Mobuck member

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    Read your reloading manual. All I've seen had instructions on how to adjust the dies.
     
  16. hypnotrader

    hypnotrader Member

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    Ok, looks like expander is too big. Measures right at .307. I think people have mentioned emory cloth. How far down should I sand it? Thanks.
     
  17. rfwobbly

    rfwobbly Member

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    You actually have 2 issues to deal with.

    1) Setting the die position. Assuming the cases you're trying to resize were fired in your gun, then the idea is to get the full length of the neck resized without moving the shoulder down. That is unless the shoulder needs moving down.

    2) Keeping the die in position. If your press doesn't use turrets, then making sure that each time you remove the die that it's reinstalled in the exact same position. This is not an adjustment you want to make over and over.
     
  18. GLOOB

    GLOOB Member

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    From my limited experience (only 1 example of each brand) there's some truth to this. But as always, there's 2 sides to the coin.

    My Lee rifle die barely sizes enough to where it gets sufficient neck tension on MOST common headstamps. Some few "off-brand" and some very old LC headstamps I have, the brass is too thin in the neck; the neck doesn't get sized small enough on the inside diameter.

    OTOH, my Hornady dies WAY oversize the neck. This makes it miserable to pull the expander back through. Even on really thin necked brass (243 brass converted to 7mm), expanding the necks is excessively difficult. Necks are getting overworked.

    So depending on how you look at it, Lee dies are better or worse. Since I've only had to toss a small handful of cases using the Lee die, and the majority of my brass works A-ok with the Lee dies, expanding is easier, and the cases should be reloadable more times before the necks crack, I prefer the Lee die. I have sanded the neck on my Hornady die to make it more like my Lee die.
     
  19. medalguy

    medalguy Member

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    More advice on setting up Lee dies. Take the little rubber O-ring that comes inside the aluminum locking ring, and throw it in the trash. Snug the ring down well, or even better yet, buy steel locking rings and be done with it.
     
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