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Title: Opening up a Lee sizer die. 


How hard would it be to open up a .429 Lee sizer to .431 and what would be the best way to do this? Would it be better to send back to Lee for them to open it up or take it to a machine shop. Or, does anyone have the tools to do it. I would rather pay someone here.Thanks for the help.Bigscot

Bigscot posted on 03/10/2005 00:17:32

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Bigscot,

Nah don't send it back, use the Buckshot method to enlarge in. You take a nice round dowel that is long enough so the ends that stick out after putting it through the die leave ample room for your fingers to grasp. Choose a dowel that is small enough so that you can wrap it with some of your favorite sand paper, emery cloth, etc. Don't use a real coarse grit. Stick it through the die they roll the die on you leg or do as Buckshot does he made a long raised pad topped with a sheet of rubber to roll the die on. You roll it like using a rolling pin. Roll some and check often to make sure you don't enlarge it too much. I've used this method and it works great. When I got close to where I wanted it to be I switched to a real fine grade of paper so it would be smooth.

Joe

starmetal posted on 03/10/2005 00:24:09

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Thanks for the tip Star. Any suggestions on starting size grit sandpaper? I suppose you check progress by sizing and measuring a bullet?  How long does it take to remove 1-2 thousandths?

Bigscot posted on 03/10/2005 00:45:22

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I started with like 120 grit as that is all I had on hand. Even finer would be better. Then I polished it with crocus cloth. It took like about five minutes. I was surprised how fast it enlarge, thus the reason I said check often. Yes, check by sizing a bullet and measuring.

Joe

starmetal posted on 03/10/2005 01:14:32

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Reply to : Bigscot


How hard would it be to open up a .429 Lee sizer to .431 and what would be the best way to do this? Would it be better to send back to Lee for them to open it up or take it to a machine shop. Or, does anyone have the tools to do it. I would rather pay someone here.Thanks for the help.Bigscot

Stuart,

There is one more way and how I do it.  Use about 4 lap bullets.  The metal in the die isn't that hard and the actual sizing part is small, so they cut quick.  And they are usually outta round so this cuts quick and gives you a round hole.   It takes about .002 just to clean them up.



Bass Ackward posted on 03/10/2005 01:29:59

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Took me exactly 400 rolls with , I think, 180 git paper to open a .329 to .331. Remember to switch the sizer end for end when you figure you're about halfway there to help equalize any dishing of the die.

Tpr Bret posted on 03/10/2005 02:37:33

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Bass Ackwards, good tip. I've been leery in the past, of making the hole oblong using the rolling method. I'll try this in the future. I imagine LBT bore lap would work well.

I had a converstaion with RCBS yesterday. The expander button on my .223 dies is too small, and deforming the lead bullets somewhat. It was sizing to .222, so the bullet bases were compressing going into the case. So, I wanted one in the .226 range, so I can lap it down to .225+ or-. As has happened in the past when trying to get a  new button for a caliber, I had to argue with the girl, telling her I did NOT need an "M" die for what I was trying to accomplish. Finally, there was light, and a new button is on the way.

Felix, I know the bench rest shooters have quite a selection of sizing buttons to get correct neck tension. Do you know if some company sells these in sets?

And finally, Beau, your package arrived. It was in a large PO box, the flat rate box having lost its' structual integrity, so to speak. Thanks!



waksupi posted on 03/10/2005 03:04:44

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I just coated some bullets with some valve grinding compound and ran them through. I had a custom Lee that I wanted to open from .377 to .379, bullet was casting .383 for my 38-55. About 8 bullets did the job, just kept pushing them through until there was no more friction, then coated some new ones and went with them.

cabezaverde posted on 03/10/2005 03:36:25

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Reply to : waksupi

Waksupi, BR folks tend to outside turn their necks giving about 0.0005-0.0008 total clearance with the loaded bullet of choice.  Therefore, because of the resulting brass consistency via 100 percent turning something off, there is no justification of using an inside-neck mandrel or sizing ball.  Their sizing die just compresses the outside of the neck only, to give enough bullet pressure after springback to make total clearance.  Usually, with most brass "brands" that transulates into a 0.002 total neck compression after sizing springback.  Really correct BR hand held sizer dies are made after the cases are made, and this is the normal practice.  Call CH or Bonanza for multiple sizer buttons.  They do enough custom work for the HighPower shooters, who tend to fully resize their cases, and don't use hand held dies. ... felix  


_felix_ posted on 03/10/2005 03:59:08

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Thanks for the info, Felix. The RCBS die just does way too much resizing, and I needed a way to get the necks back up where they should be. Being a factory chamber, I don't see much need for turning, as the chamber is large enough that the cases expand to the point they will not grip the bullet at all with out some sizing. I'm sizing about 1/3 of the neck, to keep some concentricity in the chamber. Do you suppose it is possible to lap out the case sizing die, as one does the bullet sizer?

waksupi posted on 03/10/2005 06:35:00

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Reply to : waksupi


Thanks for the info, Felix. The RCBS die just does way too much resizing, and I needed a way to get the necks back up where they should be. Being a factory chamber, I don't see much need for turning, as the chamber is large enough that the cases expand to the point they will not grip the bullet at all with out some sizing. I'm sizing about 1/3 of the neck, to keep some concentricity in the chamber. Do you suppose it is possible to lap out the casesizing die, as one does the bullet sizer?

Waksupi, rather than fighting an order taker for a custom size I have made custom expanders by (for example) taking a .30 cal standard expander down to a custom 7 mm size using my lathe.  My lathe appears to some people to be a  vise, an electric drill, and a piece of emery paper.  Anything to avoid antagonizing somebody far away and terminally ignorant.  curmudgeon 



NVcurmudgeon posted on 03/10/2005 07:59:55

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