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sizing problem

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by Sheep, Sep 12, 2011.

  1. Sheep

    Sheep

    85
    0
    Apr 14, 2009
    This is a .40S&W case sized using RCBS dies. It most likely has been loaded a few times. When I tried to size, it took too much force then finnally stopped before the case would go all the way into the die. It has left a 'ridge' on the case. I had this happen about 3 times out of 200 cases.

    My question is, what is causing this??? Does my die need to be cleaned?? Case not clean enough?? Has the case been loaded too much?? Thanks for your help.



    [​IMG]
     
  2. ChrisJn

    ChrisJn "Old Bill"

    1,742
    76
    Dec 30, 2008
    Baldwin Co, Alabama
    When I first started reloading .40S&W I was using RCBS dies and had the same problem. Many of the loaded cases would not fit in a Glock barrel and virtually none in a Wolf after market barrel.
    I solved the problem by simply swapping to Lee dies.
     


  3. WiskyT

    WiskyT Malcontent

    11,682
    1
    Jun 12, 2002
    North Carolina
    I'd try a different die. Brass is soft enough that it should assume the shape of just about anything you draw it through. Call or email RCBS, they are very good about customer service and might send you out another die. Generally, they make good stuff and yours is probably defective.
     
  4. Sheep

    Sheep

    85
    0
    Apr 14, 2009
    The round count on this die is 5000+. Something has changed recently. Can a die 'wear out'??
     
  5. fredj338

    fredj338

    21,682
    911
    Dec 22, 2004
    so.cal.
    First, clean yoyr bras, tarnished brass requries more force than clean. Are you using carbide dies? Even w/ carbide dies, a bit of case lube now & then makes things go smoother. Make sure the die is crewed down all the way to touch the shell holder w/ just a sheet of paper gap if it's carbide.
    Obviously range pickups, they could be shot in anything & have been loaded in anything. SO cases may have over expanded in the critical head area & require more effort to size regardless fo die brand. Cleaning your dies once & awhile is a good idea. It's pretty diff to wear out a steel die sizing brass cases. You can get crud embeded in the die from sizing dirty brass, but the case would still size to spec. I have dies w/ well over 100K rds thru them & they still work fine.
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2011
  6. Colorado4Wheel

    Colorado4Wheel

    14,937
    166
    Nov 2, 2006
    CO
    Think about it this way. If your sizing brass your moving metal. If you sizing things and there is little surface friction then the force of the sizing is going inward. If you sizing the brass and there is a lot of friction as your pushing the case into the die then some of that friction is moving the brass toward the bottom of the case. Basically pushing the case down a little forming that ridge. Clean and lube your brass.
     
  7. PCJim

    PCJim Senior Member

    2,950
    1
    Aug 4, 2008
    FL
    Might also be brass plated steel? Looks like there could be some surface rust on it. Check them with a magnet.
     
  8. njl

    njl

    7,797
    667
    Sep 28, 2000
    :noitacoL
    Unless the die really is broken (or absolutely filthy), clean brass and a bit of lube will probably solve the problem.

    "I have carbide dies, I don't need lube!" Well, even with a carbide sizing die, lube makes a huge amount of difference. You'll go from really having to pull the handle to wondering if there's anything under the sizing die.
     
  9. WiskyT

    WiskyT Malcontent

    11,682
    1
    Jun 12, 2002
    North Carolina
    I didn't realize the die was well used and had worked well in the past.

    I don't think a die will wear out like that. I have many tens of thousands of rounds through my carbide dies, mostly Lee, one Dillon and one RCBS, in various calibers and never saw anything like that.

    FWIW, I rarely clean my brass. Cleanliness isn't the issue.

    It could be that piece of brass is soft and it over expanded from a normal load, or that the load is over pressure and causing the brass to expand at the base of the case.:dunno:
     
  10. ColoCG

    ColoCG

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    0
    Mar 18, 2011
    Colorado

    That's what I was thinking might be possible, why I wanted to know the brand. That case just doesn't look normal.
     
  11. Colorado4Wheel

    Colorado4Wheel

    14,937
    166
    Nov 2, 2006
    CO
    Impossible ;) Lee sucks and RCBS is great. ;)


    Seriously. I have been saying the same for years.
     
  12. Sheep

    Sheep

    85
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    Apr 14, 2009

    My camera makes that look like rust. It is not rust, maybe just tarnished a bit from handling it.
     
  13. Sheep

    Sheep

    85
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    Apr 14, 2009
    You would not have loaded this brass- it is dirty. I know it has been over 4 years old. Very dirty.

    I THINK i have it figured out. The die was pretty dirty-it had never been cleaned.

    I believe the culprit was residue from tumbling. My media was too dirty and I had some Nu-Finish in there that may have left the residue.

    New media, newly polished brass, and a clean die hopefully will be the fix.
     
  14. WiskyT

    WiskyT Malcontent

    11,682
    1
    Jun 12, 2002
    North Carolina
    You don't know what I would load, and stop calling me Shirley:supergrin:

    I load black brass and I have never cleaned a sizing die, ever. Dirty brass sizes more easily than clean brass. Tumbling brass in bine dry media leaves the brass clean and dry and it galls in the die. Nufinish basically leaves wax on the brass which lubes it through the die. If the volatile stuff in Nufinish evaporates, it leaves everything dry as though there was no Nufinish in there in the first place. Dirty brass has a film of carbon on it that basically lubes it through the die. So, dirty sizes well, a fresh dose of Nufinish etc sizes well, and bone dry media sizes hard.

    I don't know if the dry media caused the bad results you got, but you may be on to something.