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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I've been working up a deal through Lipsey's Dist. in Baton Rouge, to head space one of their 45acp Birdsheads for my Cowboy Special cases. So far, so good. Their compliance officer Scott D. has used a "care package" feeler gauge and six virgin American Cowboy 45 Specials, to get 0.003-0.004 gaps behind the rims of these cases.
Now, I dropped all six into my Taylor's 45 Colt converter cylinder, before I mailed them to Scott. But he had to give some extra push to fully seat them. I also used a veneer gauge for judging their lengths. So what is left is some kind of taper right at the Ruger's chamber mouths, made for the taper crimps in factory 45acp ammunition. Since I'm going to roll crimp every one I load up with my supply of 263 gr. Webley H.B. slugs, it won't make any difference on my end. Now that I have a serial #, I'm heading out to my Lipsey's agent in Lapwai, Id. to place this serialized order. Wish me Luck!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Picked up my # 5154 Birdshead 45acp

I've just called Ruger cust. support, and they are not happy with someone shooting even factory American Cowboy 45 Cowboy Specials, which are Mouse Pharts, in my book. These are only made to shoot very quickly in 7 yard matches, without recoil. If anyone knows of a 45 acp factory lead bullet load under 500 fps, please advise me. I'll have to scare up a couple of 1911 magazines to help feed this new toy, but I wanted something to drop in for bear medicine when I'm out in the woods. Surprizingly, Ruger says that any 45 Plus P factory ammo is O.K. in these new Birdsheads. These cylinder webs between chambers are even thinner than my old Colt S.A.A. Gen 2's.

Now if someone factory loads the 45acp with the same power, lead bullet, as the old Remington 45 A.R. lead slugs, I'll make a bee line to acquire a couple of boxes of them. These were right up there at around 23KCUP.

BTW, the ejector rod in this new Birdshead doesn't even clear the 45 acp case mouths from the cylinder. A slightly shorter, trimmed Cowboy Special Case, OTOH, will clear properly. You can't put in a roll crimp, on a case which has already been taper crimped in a 45acp seat, crimp die. IIRC, factory Remington 45 Auto Rimmed ammo was always roll crimped at their factory. I'll look into buying some of these 45 Auto Rimmed bulk bullets, as they must have a roll crimping groove.
 

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Good Luck !

I just realized I pass by Lipsey's twice a day , every workday , going to and from work ! Our buildings are on the same street ... Exchequer Drive !
I need to stop in there one day and visit with them .
Gary
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Say "Hi" for me

Good Luck !

I just realized I pass by Lipsey's twice a day , every workday , going to and from work ! Our buildings are on the same street ... Exchequer Drive !
I need to stop in there one day and visit with them .
Gary
Lipsey's compliance Officer, Mr. Scot Duet, was a great help with my Ruger Birdshead 45acp project. If you do stop in, please say "Hi" for me. As seems the case these days, one chamber is a little tight, so I'm having my G.S., Shaun T., of Craigmont, Id., ream deeper throats, and uniform all six of them to the largest. Plus a little work at the forcing cone and chamfering the frame under the loading gate, to help rimmed Cowboy Special cases extract better.
Please get back to me if you make this connection.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
After some water has flowed, I was looking for Speer 260 gr JHP’s, but could only find total metal plated 230 gr. bullets. I ponied up and purchased a 500 bullet brick for $ 87& change. I started on a 100. Pack of Federal brass case 230 FMJ’s, and hopefully can get 5 reloads out of my range ammo. Maybe 260 gr. Plated bullets will show up c before I run out of these. I still don’t have the magic touch of getting lead slugs to chamber using 45 Cowboy Special brass. There always seems to be a tiny swelling right against the case mouths that stops the cyl. From spinning. The tiniest circular shaving stops the next round from chambering. I thought my Taylor’s 45 Colt converter cyl. was the tightest, but this Ruger balks at rounds ( rimmed Cowboy Specials ), which run fine in the converter. A Zoom snap caps and FMJ Range ammo falls in and drops out fine. It’s the last few thousandths as the reload crimps, that’s causing me grief. Seat & Crimp in two dies may help. So I’ll keep on keeping on!
 

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I don't know what dies you are using, but a common problem is a roll crimp can turn the lip of the case mouth inward at such a tight radius that the turning actually pulls the brass below the crimp out from the side of the bullet, as shown exaggerated at the right end of the image below:

Hand Product Human body Lighting Font


There are a couple of solutions to this. One is to use a Redding Profile Crimp Die. It has a hybrid crimp profile that starts as a taper crimp and ends as a roll crimp. This way the taper holds the sides of the brass down while the roll crimp is formed, avoiding the issue of bulging sides. They make one for 45 Auto, which I assume would work with the Special with the right shell holder. Call Redding to be sure. Another possibility is just to get a Lee Carbide Factory Crimp Die, which has the carbide ring that squeezes down any excess diameter. It's less elegant and, due to spring-back and being a straight ring, is not guaranteed to do as well, but it is more economical. The only odd thing there is they make separate ones for 45 ACP and 45 Auto-rim, and I don't know what the difference is. You would have to call Lee and ask which one you should get for 45 CS.
 
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I don't know what dies you are using, but a common problem is a roll crimp can turn the lip of the case mouth inward at such a tight radius that the turning actually pulls the brass below the crimp out from the side of the bullet, as shown exaggerated at the right end of the image below:

View attachment 104637

There are a couple of solutions to this. One is to use a Redding Profile Crimp Die. It has a hybrid crimp profile that starts as a taper crimp and ends as a roll crimp. This way the taper holds the sides of the brass down while the roll crimp is formed, avoiding the issue of bulging sides. They make one for 45 Auto, which I assume would work with the Special with the right shell holder. Call Redding to be sure. Another possibility is just to get a Lee Carbide Factory Crimp Die, which has the carbide ring that squeezes down any excess diameter. It's less elegant and, due to spring-back and being a straight ring, is not guaranteed to do as well, but it is more economical. The only odd thing there is they make separate ones for 45 ACP and 45 Auto-rim, and I don't know what the difference is. You would have to call Lee and ask which one you should get for 45 CS.
Thanx, I’ll follow these leads up!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I contacted Redding, but they don’t do retail sales. No one Elsa has these in stock. Door #2, Natchezss has Lee factory crimp die for $35 including shppng. So I’ll try this way??
Received Lee FCD for taper crimping 45 auto family of cartridges down to 45 GAP. Lee said over phone 1.285” is limit for collets to work, so my die uses a floating sleeve, over a carbide ring to squeeze crimps back down?? Neat thing is large ogive hollow in top punch, to prevent this die from affecting bullets’ prior seating in cases. I will report back if I get Webley “sugar loaf”. 262 gr. lead slugs to be crimped successfully in 45 Cowboy Special cases.
 

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Get a normal roll crimp die for .45 Colt and machine or grind the end of it down where it will work with the .45 Auto Rim cases, etc. Doesn't have to be a fancy solution. With some care, a normal benchtop grinder can handle this task. Or any friend with a lathe. The grinder makes the end result look like 20 miles of bad road, in my opinion, but it certainly can be made to work.

Lee's arbitrary limit on the collet length is just that, arbitrary. They may be being cautious about the collet steel being flexed too far (failures might cause reloaders to gripe about it) but I've cut them down, and made my own collets out of various 'mystery metal' in the scrap box. As long as you aren't taking too much off the bottom end of the collet, to the point that you machine away what's holding the fingers together, it isn't that big of a deal (in my experience). Mind you, I don't do high production reloading with the end results. If a collet that I modified or made from scratch failed, I'd make another. Just the price of getting what I want.

But a roll crimp would seem to work equally well, if you can get a short enough seating die. That's probably the direction I would go. The seating die could still be used with longer cartridges. Just adjust in the press as needed.
 
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