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Is There a Real Difference in Crimp Dies?

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Based on some discussion about the Lee FCD in another thread, I need some education please.

Can someone to explain how the dies below differ in crimping for pistol ammo. I currently use the Lee FCD (with the knob on top) and set the crimp so the line on the bullet (if pulled) is almost non-existent.
  • Lee FCD (the one with the knob on top)
  • Dillon Crimp Die
  1. Do these crimp in different ways?
  2. Does one provide better accuracy over the other?
  3. I've seen in different posts that you should have no line, or barely a line around the bullet from the crimp. Is this true no matter what crimp die you use?
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· NRA & Second Amendment Life Member
1,654 Posts
Alright. Take a barrel out of one of your pistols and look down the barrel from the chamber side. You will see that the chamber is slightly wider than the barrel and that there is a ridge in the barrel. That is what your case indexes on (stops the forward movement of the case). If you apply to much crimp on the case, it does not stop where it should and is pushed into this ridge. This compresses the bullet in the case and does not allow for it to release from the case and go forward. It is jammed into the case, and hence into the barrel. When you fire that round, the bullet will be jammed and all the pressure has to go somewhere. Where? Back to your slide, mag well and frame. The gun might very well grenade in your hand.

Do not crimp pistol cartridges, only remove the flair.
Does that include shouldered cartridges like 357 SIG and 32-20?

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