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Discussion in 'Reloading' started by wallacefan, May 8, 2012.

  1. wallacefan


    Dec 24, 2011
    what are the best die sets to use?
    i want some with the locking rings so i can setup only once.

    i am reloading 7.62x39
    7.62x54r 9mm and 5.56

  2. F106 Fan

    F106 Fan

    Oct 19, 2011
    Best in what sense?

    Are you just doing bulk reloading? If so, just about any die set will work. RCBS, Dillon, Hornady and Lee will work. As will Redding and any of the others. Google for 'reloading dies'. You can get some pistol sets for $35 and I just found rifle sets for < $20.

    Are you doing precision rifle? Redding makes some nice competition dies as do the other manufacturers. These competition dies and die sets tend to be well north of $100

    Loading on a progressive press? I like the Dillon dies because they can be disassembled and cleaned without losing adjustment.

    It all gets down to what you want to accomplish. I loaded .223 and .308 with RCBS dies for quite a while. I am now trying to build a little better ammo so I am using Redding dies for .308. I also want a little faster production of .223 ammo so I am using Dillon dies and a 550B press.


  3. wallacefan


    Dec 24, 2011
    basic target shooting
    going to start on rcbs single stage press
  4. fredj338


    Dec 22, 2004
    No real best, only diff. Lee are fine, replace the lock rings. I prefer Redding or Hornady when looking @ rifle dies. RCBS makes trhe 'X' die which eliminates mutliple case trimming, bonus.
    FWIW, loading for 7.62x39 is going to be expensive compared to others because boxer primerd brass is not readily available & there are few if any cheap bullet supplies. Not to mention & doubt a AK or SKS benefits much from a well preapred handload, JMO.
    Last edited: May 8, 2012
  5. F106 Fan

    F106 Fan

    Oct 19, 2011

    I have a lot of RCBS die sets and they have always worked fine. Lee is another, cheaper, candidate.

    Make sure your pistol resizing die is carbide (and spray the cases with Hornady One-Shot anyway) while the rifle dies can be regular steel since you will have to use some kind of case lube. I use Dillon but there are others around like Imperial Die Wax. RCBS has lube and a pad for applying it.

    There is really no good reason to stray away from the RCBS catalog/site. Everything you need is there and it's pretty good stuff.

    If you are shooting 9mm out of a Glock, you might want to use a Lee resizing die. It sizes just a little farther down the case. You DO NOT need the Lee FCD (Factory Crimp Die) for anything. Save the money.

    You're not going to go wrong if you just stick with RCBS and, possibly, the Lee 9mm sizing die.

  6. Three-Five-Seven

    Three-Five-Seven Señor Mombo Millennium Member

    Aug 8, 1999
    Great Southwest
    Because of the unique way that necks are sized/expanded, Forster dies seem to offer a performance advantage for precision shooters. Redding are next best, usually. Hornady are close to Redding and offer some significant convenience advantages. Lee are often much better performers than their price suggests. RCBS are trouble prone, but the customer service offered by that company often makes up for any problems and results in a great set of dies. Dillon is somewhere on that list, near the top.

    My shooting buddies and I have been migrating to Forster and Wilson dies and feel there are significant performance advantages to these two brands -- for precision shooting.
  7. stevelyn

    stevelyn NRA Life Member

    I consider Redding and Forster to be top of the line, but I also have had no complaints about ammo loaded with Lee dies either.
  8. shotgunred

    shotgunred local trouble maker

    Mar 1, 2008
    Washington (the state)
    I personally like to seat and crimp in separate stations. So I prefer to stick with dillon dies.