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Using Lee Dies in a Dillon 550B

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by jwc17, Aug 20, 2010.

  1. jwc17


    May 24, 2009
    I have owned Lee Classic Turret, Loadmaster and Classic Cast presses but recently sold them all and bought a Dillon 550B which just arrived today.

    I kept my Lee dies because they never failed me. Is there any reason I should not consider using them in my new 550B?
  2. XDRoX


    Jan 24, 2009
    San Diego
    They'll work fine in your new blue toy. One of the reasons that some prefer Dillon dies are because they have a slightly larger mouth than the Lee dies. The cases slip into them easier because of the larger mouth. When I'm in the groove I don't like getting a snagged case to slow me down.:supergrin:

  3. Olivers_AR


    Dec 27, 2007
    Dulles, VA
    I've used them for .45ACP, as noted they don't have the beveled edges, but do work fine.
  4. GioaJack

    GioaJack Conifer Jack

    Apr 14, 2009
    Conifer, CO
    STOP, STOP, STOP!!! DON'T EVEN OPEN THE BOX! Lee dies react with the inferior metal of Dillon presses causing a toxic fume to be given off. (Side effects of these fumes include, but are not limited to, dizziness, loss of motor coordination, boils, ringing in the ears, bleeding gums, double vision, restless leg syndrome, stiff leg syndrome, rubber leg syndrome, chicken leg syndrome, LBBCC, (Leggo Building Block Construction Compulsion) and in rarely reported instances, explosive diarrhea.

    To avoid these potentially fatal and always embarrassing conditions return the Dillon press post haste and in its stead purchase a Hornady LNL. The LNL is constructed with super secret metals two grades superior to the metals used in the armor plating of the Abrams Main Battle Tank and is impervious to rust, corrosion, warping, breakage, close proximity nuclear detonation or the propensity to produce inferior ammunition which has been scientifically proven to be inherent in Dillon presses.

    There is no need to thank me for saving you from a dreadful mistake... I long ago dedicated my life to helping others.

  5. jwc17


    May 24, 2009
    If it's any consolation Jack, I will be using Hornady lock rings on the Lee dies!
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2010
  6. Colorado4Wheel


    Nov 2, 2006
    Lee Lock rings are huge, hornady are also kinda big. Dillon has some nice steel ones that also happen to fit their fancy wrench/allen set. It's just sucks you in to more Dillon stuff. I use Lee dies in every caliber I load.
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2010
  7. ron59

    ron59 Bustin Caps

    Jan 3, 2009
    Smyrna, GA
    I have a Lee sizing die I use instead of the Dillon one. Yes, the mouth isn't beveled, but it seems to resize the base a little better? At least for my 9mm it does.

    I owe Steve (C4W) for that little tip.

    I also use a Redding Micrometer Seating die, that's *sweet*. I love it. I only use the Dillon Powder station stuff and their crimp die. The Lee stuff will work fine.
  8. dudel


    Dec 10, 2008
    Texas Hill Country
    The Lee dies will work just fine in the 550b. I would consider swapping out the Lee lock rings for the Dillon lock rings. Space on the 550b tool head is at a premium. The Dillon lock rings are much smaller and give you more room to lock down the dies.
  9. hounds2


    Jan 2, 2009
    +1 on dudel...not only do the dillion lock rings buy you some space but they hold the die adjustment. i like lee dies but hate the o-ring lock rings. they let things move around and affect consistancy. change to dillion lock rings and load away. btw, i have some dillion dies and they are great too. i like the way you can dis-assemble and clean without re-adjusting everything when you are done. good luck
  10. Colorado4Wheel


    Nov 2, 2006
    I actually like the Lee Lock rings with the O rings in place for the LCT. BUT not for the 550. Different machines. LCT benifits from the "floating die concept". I don't see the Dillon as the same. It's toolhead is not a rotating setup like the LCT. To get a locked setup with the lee rings just take the o-ring out and flip them over. Solid as a rock then. Still way to big but no more o-ring.
  11. unclebob


    Oct 14, 2000
    Mary Esther FL
    Get the Dillon 1” lock rings. Forget any wrench, and don’t get the Dillon Allen wrenches.
    Instead get a 1” deep well socket. Works 100 times better than a wrench. Go too Ace hardware and get their Allen ball end Allen wrenches that look like screwdrivers. Works better than plain Allen wrenches or even the T handle Allen sets.
    Using the Lee dies you may only get one or two threads on the lock ring. That is all that you need.
  12. TonyT


    Mar 14, 2009
    I have used Dillon, Lee, Lyman, RCBS and Hor nady dies in my Dillon 550. When loading lead bullets I prefer the Dillon seating die since it is easy to remocve the seating stem for cleaning without disturbing the adjustments.
  13. Rico567


    Feb 3, 2004
    I got Dillon .45 ACP dies that came with my 650. I also have the Dillon carbide set in .223. The other dies I use on the Dillon are Lee (which are as good as any die made, in my opinion), except for some old Lyman dies I'm using in .38 / .357. Station 5 for pistols always has a Lee FCD in there; once I used one, I wouldn't be without it.
  14. PCJim

    PCJim Senior Member

    Aug 4, 2008
    I use Lee dies in my 550b almost exclusively. The lockrings are a tad larger than what would be preferred on the toolhead, but they work nevertheless.
  15. MoNsTeR


    Aug 24, 2003
    Lakewood, CO
    They work great. I recommend switching the Lee lock rings for Dillon 1" rings as others have suggested.
  16. jwc17


    May 24, 2009
    I took the advice of buying a few sets of Dillon lock rings for my Lee dies. They work great and I am very impressed with the 550B.
  17. shotgunred

    shotgunred local trouble maker

    Mar 1, 2008
    Washington (the state)
    Its kind of like sticking a Hyundai engine in a race car. It will still get you around the track but.....:crying:
  18. yes it will work with no problems. i use just about every brand of dies made in both of my 550's. i even mix brands in some cals that i load.
  19. ursoboostd


    Jun 30, 2009
    Florence, Ky
    When you guys use other manufacturers dies, do you just use Dillon's Charge die? -Wade-
  20. Colorado4Wheel


    Nov 2, 2006
    Yes. You only need three dies from the Lee set.

    (Dillon Powder die)
    Bullet Seating

    Or if your old school

    (Dillon Powder Die)
    Seat and Crimp
    Last station empty.