Reloading issue 223 RCBS dies

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flowrie
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Reloading issue 223 RCBS dies

#1

Post by flowrie » Tue Apr 07, 2020 9:34 pm

Many years ago I reloaded 357 mag and never had any problems. Recently, I decided to get back into reloading but for rifle, specifically 223. I want a longer bullet for my 1:7 223 Wylde barrel, so I decided on a Hornady 68 gr HP Match. Purchased a set of RCBS small base dies. When I seat the bullet, there is a ring around the bullet near the tip ( see picture). My process is to decap ( no sizing), tumble clean, trim and clean the primer pocket, lube and size, chamfer, prime, drop powder, seat bullet. While seating the bullet I gently partially seat, rotate the case, partially seat, rotate, complete seating. However, the ring on the bullet appears during the first partial seating, and gets worse as I go. It is actually deforming the bullet, I can feel the indentation.

I am thinking possibly the expander is not opening the mouth enough, but the amount of force to seat does not seem to be too much. Maybe a bad seater die? Any suggestions ?
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Re: Reloading issue 223 RCBS dies

#2

Post by Lena » Tue Apr 07, 2020 10:16 pm

Seater stem wrong for ogive, possibly to much neck tension, have you checked that, also look close jacket slightly deformed, is seating hard, are you chamfering the neck ID? Have you checked neck run out and or loaded round run out? What diameter is expander?
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Re: Reloading issue 223 RCBS dies

#3

Post by flowrie » Tue Apr 07, 2020 11:00 pm

Expander mics at .222, today I ordered a replacement decap expander.
Pressure to seat maybe a little high.
Don’t have a fixture to measure runout, at least not yet. Will buy one when I start reloading 308.
I do chamfer the mouth ID and debut the OD.
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Re: Reloading issue 223 RCBS dies

#4

Post by Beiruty » Wed Apr 08, 2020 6:20 am

First, you size before your trim. If you do not, after you size, the case would grow again.
Second, seater die is "crimping" the case. That is the result of incorrect seating die setup.
Here is how to set up your seating die

Using a sized, and trimmed case:
1) Place the case in the shell holder
2) raise up the ram all the way up
3) unscrew the seating stem all the way up but not to remove the stem from the seating die
4) screw in the seating die into the press until it touches the the case mouth, back off 1/4 turn
5) Now adjust the seating stem (screw in) until bullet is seated to the desired Overall Cartridge length
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Re: Reloading issue 223 RCBS dies

#5

Post by K-Texas » Wed Apr 08, 2020 3:43 pm

flowrie wrote:
Tue Apr 07, 2020 9:34 pm
Many years ago I reloaded 357 mag and never had any problems. Recently, I decided to get back into reloading but for rifle, specifically 223. I want a longer bullet for my 1:7 223 Wylde barrel, so I decided on a Hornady 68 gr HP Match. Purchased a set of RCBS small base dies. When I seat the bullet, there is a ring around the bullet near the tip ( see picture). My process is to decap ( no sizing), tumble clean, trim and clean the primer pocket, lube and size, chamfer, prime, drop powder, seat bullet. While seating the bullet I gently partially seat, rotate the case, partially seat, rotate, complete seating. However, the ring on the bullet appears during the first partial seating, and gets worse as I go. It is actually deforming the bullet, I can feel the indentation.

I am thinking possibly the expander is not opening the mouth enough, but the amount of force to seat does not seem to be too much. Maybe a bad seater die? Any suggestions ?
What OACL are you using and which powder and charge-weight? Your bullet looks like it's seated pretty deep, maybe too deep. If you're using a very dense spherical like TAC or AA 2520, those powders, and several others like them will not compress by very much, if at all.

Follow the manufacturers instructions for setting up your dies. I don't know what your seating stem looks like, I use REDDING Standard FL dies without issue, I passed on the small base dies, but obviously there is too much force being placed on your bullet. If it were an expander issue, your method of seating in 1/3 steps should be revealing a problem by the second step if not after the first. So I suspect that you're not seeing this until after the 3rd and final step? Try seating a bullet for a "'dummy" round without and powder in the case.

I'm sure you know that the OACL you can use is determined by your magazines with Max OACL being 2.260". I would load as long as possible while the rounds function 100%. A bullet you might want to consider in the future is the Hornady 75 gr. BTHP w/cannelure. Your barrel with a 1 in 7" twist and the Wylde chamber should handle bullets even heavier. I load for 1 in 8" twist barrels with 5.56mm NATO chambers where max is around 80 grs. for that twist rate. The cannelure on the bullet we use is properly located for crimping into it and OACL is 2.248". ;-)
Last edited by K-Texas on Wed Apr 08, 2020 3:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Reloading issue 223 RCBS dies

#6

Post by flowrie » Wed Apr 08, 2020 3:46 pm

Hello Beiruty,
Followed your instructions, obtained a better result, but still leaving a significant mark on the bullet. but little to no indentation that I can detect.
I will order a seating die (no crimp) and then taper crimp with the RCBS with the seat stem removed.
With the RCBS the seating depth is not consistent.
Thank you for your help!
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Re: Reloading issue 223 RCBS dies

#7

Post by flowrie » Wed Apr 08, 2020 3:52 pm

Follow the manufacturers instructions for setting up your dies. I don't know what your seating stem looks like, I use REDDING Standard FL dies without issue, I passed on the small base dies, but obviously there is too much force being placed on your bullet. If it were an expander issue, your method of seating in 1/3 steps should be revealing a problem by the second step if not after the first. So I suspect that you're not seeing this until after the 3rd and final step? Try seating a bullet for a "'dummy" round without and powder in the case.

[/quote]

Seeing the issue on the first 1/3 step, and also with dummy bullets, no primer no powder.
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Re: Reloading issue 223 RCBS dies

#8

Post by Lena » Wed Apr 08, 2020 4:14 pm

Even though a book load to much volume of powder could do this. The empty case would rule that out. What is your powder level below the neck?
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Re: Reloading issue 223 RCBS dies

#9

Post by K-Texas » Wed Apr 08, 2020 4:25 pm

flowrie wrote:
Wed Apr 08, 2020 3:52 pm
Follow the manufacturers instructions for setting up your dies. I don't know what your seating stem looks like, I use REDDING Standard FL dies without issue, I passed on the small base dies, but obviously there is too much force being placed on your bullet. If it were an expander issue, your method of seating in 1/3 steps should be revealing a problem by the second step if not after the first. So I suspect that you're not seeing this until after the 3rd and final step? Try seating a bullet for a "'dummy" round without and powder in the case.
Seeing the issue on the first 1/3 step, and also with dummy bullets, no primer no powder.
[/quote]

Sorry, I overlooked you mentioning that your seeing the significant ring after your first step. One other thing that might be worth a try would be to pass the case-neck over the expander a couple of times when you make the dummy. At .222" the expander seems right, but maybe the sizing die is a bit too tight and undersizing the necks.

Personally, I only load bullets that have cannelures for autoloaders that can be crimped into. I taper crimp into mine just enough that it would catch the top part of the cannelure if set-back occurred. ;-)
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Re: Reloading issue 223 RCBS dies

#10

Post by flowrie » Wed Apr 08, 2020 6:40 pm

I think the seater plug is not ideal for the bullet I am loading. Will try different brass, reduce powder load, new seater die, and see what I get. I removed the expander and it is really tight when I wiggle it in and out of the mouth of resized brass. So, may be a sizing issue, I am using small base and not full length. I don’t really mind marks on the bullet just so it is not deformed. It’s a learning process, I’ll figure it out, do appreciate the help/suggestions!
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Re: Reloading issue 223 RCBS dies

#11

Post by K-Texas » Wed Apr 08, 2020 8:01 pm

flowrie wrote:
Wed Apr 08, 2020 6:40 pm
I think the seater plug is not ideal for the bullet I am loading. Will try different brass, reduce powder load, new seater die, and see what I get. I removed the expander and it is really tight when I wiggle it in and out of the mouth of resized brass. So, may be a sizing issue, I am using small base and not full length. I don’t really mind marks on the bullet just so it is not deformed. It’s a learning process, I’ll figure it out, do appreciate the help/suggestions!
It is most definitely a learning process, but that's a good thing. The day I wake up and think there's nothing new to learn . . . There are only good questions here.

I hope I explained the procedure in a comprehensive way. One cycle of the case to resize and then expand the neck on the way down I am calling a single cycle. When I mentioned doing that a second time, it's strictly about doing that with a dummy and passing the case neck through a second cycle. From there you can test the load for set-back, IF the bullet will seat without deforming, by pressing the nose of the bullet into a block of wood. However, without a cannelure on the bullet with the case-mouth crimped into it, you're more likely going to shorten the load with a "push" test.

Having adequate chamber length is NOT an issue here. The Wylde chamber will be good with any OACL at or near 2.260". With bullets that were designed for .223/5.56mm NATO, they will have a cannelure. I'll just post the load we use, but remember to work up from a charge at 2 grs. less. The Hornady 75 gr. BTHP w/cannelure with 25.0 grs. of TAC and over a CCI400 primer with an OACL of 2.248", I've seen 10 rounds go into .5 MOA at 100 yards. I've chrongraphed enough of them to know that Standard Deviation will be 10 FPS or less, but that's just my load. The objective being something equal to what first became known as the Mk 262 Mod 0. Development courtesy of a great Texan named Chris Kyle. But that load used a SIERRA 77 gr. open-tip match bullet w/cannelure with a velocity mandate of 2700 FPS in order to tumble at 300 yards. When I tested that load at 50 yards, however, it came all-apart. Testing the Hornady 75 gr. open-tip match bullet with 2750 FPS at the muzzle, the load is equal in accuracy while it does NOT come apart.

If that's the thing you're trying to accomplish. But I would always use a bullet with a cannelure to crimp into if it will be used in an autoloading rifle. ;-)
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Re: Reloading issue 223 RCBS dies

#12

Post by flowrie » Mon May 18, 2020 9:46 am

Have been reloading for a few weeks now.
Getting some good results (better than factory 55 gr range ammo).
Trying to improve some more using some longer match bullets.

Have a question maybe someone can help with.
I measured the cartridge base to the lands, is approx. 2.010
In order to load with a magazine I need to keep the COAL at 2.260 or less.
Using a Hornandy 68 gr HPBT match, I am getting a calculated “jump” of about 0.122 to 0.123

Using a Sierra 69 gr HPBT match, the calculated “jump” to the lands is at 0.183.

Is this a normal jump distance to the lands for an AR 15?
Barrel is a 16” 1:7
"This will be the best security for maintaining our liberties. A nation of well-informed men who have been taught to know and prize the rights which God has given them cannot be enslaved. It is in the religion of ignorance that tyranny begins." --Benjamin Franklin

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