Anyone know how to adjust a Hornady taper crimp die?

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by Jim B in CO, Oct 7, 2012.

  1. I've got a Hornady 10mm./.40 S&W taper crimp die ( but I don't have the instructions. I know with other dies (Lee, for instance) the procedure is: back the crimp die out of the press, put a loaded round in the shellholder, run the ram up to the top of the stroke, screw the die down until it just makes contact with the cartridge, drop the ram down a bit and then turn the die in an additional amount. With Lee, IIRC, it's a half- to full-turn. Anyone know for sure what it is for the Hornady? Is this the correct procedure for the Hornady?

    Thanks in advance!


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  3. WiskyT

    WiskyT Malcontent

    There is no set amount, if there was, the die wouldn't be adjustable. You have to learn how to adjust the die. You have to understand what the crimp should be to do this, the theory of crimp 101. It's simple. You don't want much, if any crimp on an auto pistol round like 40SW.

    Take a loaded round that hasn't been crimped at all yet and see if it will easily fit into your guns chamber. Field strip the gun and remove the barrel to check this. It won't fit. It will go in about 3/4 of the way and stop. You can push it in further with your thumb, but then it will be hard to get back out.

    Take the above mentioned round and put it in your shell holder and raise the ram. Adjust your crimp die down until it touches the loaded round. Then lower the ram a bit and turn the crimp die in a bit more, maybe 1/2 turn. Raise the round back up and crimp it. See if it fits the chamber easily. If it doesn't, repeat the process of adjusting the die down a little, maybe only 1/8 of a turn at a time and crimping until the round fits easily in your chamber. Lock the locking ring on the crimper die because it is now adjusted.

  4. wiskyT is correct, I have the RCBS taper crimp & I load 357 Sig, same principle different color. You may have to take a few mistake bullets apart but that is the way I do it.
  5. All you are trying to do is close up the case mouth where it was expanded to allow seating of the bullet.

    You don't want to get the crimp so tight that it mars the bullet. Pull one and make sure the bullet isn't dented. This is particularly important for plated bullets where the plating may be damaged.

    I check my rounds by putting a pair of dial calipers along the length of the cartridge. I don't want to see air behind the case mouth because the case mouth is too high and I don't want to see the case mouth rolling into the bullet.

    There's one other concern besides the bullet fitting the chamber. If the crimp isn't tight enough and the case mouth is too high, the cartridge at the top of the magazine can 'trip' the case being ejected and yank it off the extractor. This problem is even more apparent when loading semi-wadcutters or any bullet with a ledge close to the case mouth.

    Just close up the case mouth; not too much and not too little. Just closed...

  6. Well, it's a G27 (loose chamber); the uncrimped round fits in the chamber with no problem.
  7. Yeah, that's definitely the idea. I'm thinking an additional half turn from when the crimp die contacts the loaded round should be pretty close.
  8. WiskyT

    WiskyT Malcontent

    Then you need to see about your mouth belling adjustment.
  9. Njanear

    Njanear Nagant-ophile

    What about using a Lee Factory Crimp Die?




  10. A Glock will chamber a bowling ball!

    I previously pointed out the problem with the extracting case getting hung up on the improperly crimped round at the top of the magazine.

    As also pointed out above, if the case was properly expanded prior to seating the bullet, there is no way in the world it will chamber. Even in a Glock.

    #10 F106 Fan, Oct 8, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2012
  11. Well, what do you mean by "properly expanded"? I run the expander die down just "enough". It expands the case mouth enough so I can easily insert the bullet about 1/16". I do that and seat the bullet the rest of the way using the seater die. This seems to maintain neck tension and increase the life of the brass. If I expanded the brass so much that it wouldn't chamber in a Glock, isn't it "overexpanded"?
  12. I rarely use a Glock barrel to check my (9mil) loads, but use a case gage instead. I can say that even a seemingly small bell that is not later properly crimped, will not fit all the way into the gage.
  13. If you use minimal flare on a case then yes, it will still chamber in a Glock or similar with out crimp. You need to be able to either learn how to measure the flare remaining with your dial calipers or hold it up to the light and see the remaining flare. I hold the loaded round between the jaws of the dial calipers for a reference. It's easy to see that way. Lower the crimp die till it just takes the flare out.
    #13 Colorado4Wheel, Oct 9, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2012
  14. I just ran a sample case through my reloader. When I expand a case, it is just enough for the bevel at the base of a lead bullet to seat inside the case mouth. The skirt of the bullet does not fit inside.

    This expanded case does not fit a case gauge and it only fits half way down the chamber of my G21SF.

    With my setup, the case is expanded from 0.468" to 0.473" or a mere 0.005". Dillon recommends 0.020" of expansion (page 17 of Super 1050 Manual)! That's a LOT! It abolutely wouldn't fit a chamber, even on a Glock!

    Next time around, I may flare my cases another couple of thousandths.

    It's true that you don't want to overwork the brass. In my case, it's also true that I don't want to shave lead off the bullet while I seat it. It would be even more important with plated bullets to not damage the plating.

    I don't know how many reloads are possible with 9mm or .40 S&W brass. I do know that .45 brass lasts forever. Or at least so long that I am more likely to lose it than to have a case split.

    I know first hand the difficulties that arise from not taper crimping far enough. Yesterday, I had a few rounds where the casemouth was noticeably oversized and every one of them failed to chamber in my Sig 1911. I should have tried them in my Sig P220 but I didn't think about it.


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