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Discussion Starter #1
Gentlemen I have recently purchased (as in on the way) a set of RCBS 54r dies and was looking for opinions from experienced people on them. Does anyone use RCBS dies in general? Any experience with the 54r reloading itself? What can I expect? I will be using them in my Hornady Lock-n-Load press.
 

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Sorry, I don't load for the 7.62x54R so can't offer any insite in that regard.

What kind of feedback are you wanting Walt? I have several sets of RCBS dies and seldom had issues with them. The times I did have problems, RCBS took care of me promptly at no charge.
 

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I've got a dozen or so sets of RCBS dies and never had cause to complain about any of them, other than through my own mistakes or thick-headedness.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Most of what I load for are straight wall cartridges so the 54r is new to me. Also the only dies I use are Hornady so RCBS is totally different from what I am used to.
 

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The Troll Whisperer (Moderator)
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I own a set of RCBS 7.62x54R dies and have the same excellent results with them as with all the other RCBS dies on the shelf. Is there any particular concern you have about them?
 
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Walt45,

About 90% of my 60 sets of dies are RCBS and one is a well-used set of 7.62X54R MM. I load for several Russian and Finnish 7.62 rifles and back off the sizing die for each to get a slight crunch fit.

Webley
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I own a set of RCBS 7.62x54R dies and have the same excellent results with them as with all the other RCBS dies on the shelf. Is there any particular concern you have about them?
I'm not concerned about die quality as much as I am about the finished product. Anybody have any pics they can shaire of finished loads? How well do these dies switch between .308 and .311-.312 bullets?
 

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I'm not concerned about die quality as much as I am about the finished product. Anybody have any pics they can shaire of finished loads? How well do these dies switch between .308 and .311-.312 bullets?
It's a simple matter of disassembling the die and reassembling with the correct expander button. It took me almost as long to write this post as it'll take you to do the job, even without instructions. ;)
 

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Walt 45,

I agree with broom jm. If you need to switch between .308,.311 and .312, I want to know just WHAT are you planning to load for?

I reload jacketed and cast bullets for my Russian and Finnish arms. I have yet to alter my resizing die bullet expander button. Wot?

Webley
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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I'm guessing some 7.62x54R dies come with expanders for both .308 and .311-ish bullets. Maybe not all.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
I just got the dies in the mail today. I have not changed the die insert, and I'm already running into problems. The .308 bullets fall into the case before the crimp phase. Right now I'm just using an empty case to make a "master" case to test things with.
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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If you have another expander in the die set, try that.

If you don't.... then you are going to have do something else. With the expander out, is the neck small enough to prevent a bullet from falling through?
 

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The resizing die may have come with a larger expander already installed. Take it apart and measure the expander button (this is where a micrometer can actually be of some value) to see how big it is. An expander button is usually .001" smaller than the diameter of the jacketed bullets you would be seating in a given cartridge. In this case, you may have a .310" expander button in the die (for .311" bullets) and that's why the .308" bullets are falling into the case.
 

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Believe it or not the 7.62x54r takes a .311 round not the .30 or .308 that most reloaders try to use from the start. I looked all over for some .311 dia. 7.62 round & didn't find a thing. So I ask the guy at the gun shop for .311 dia bullets & didn't tell him what cal. I was reloading. He had to look in his book & came up with .303 rounds that were .311 dia.
The reloadable brass is hard to find too, I had to buy some loaded rounds to get my reloadable brass.
Some older rifles could go with the .312 bullets but you will need to slug your barrel to be sure & be safe.
 

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If I may suggest, Prvi Partizan makes some good loaded ammo for a good price. The brass has been excellent for reloading in my Nagant. I have several boxes that I have 5 reloads on. I bought the loaded ammo for less than the cost of new components. The proper size for Nagants should be .312, , which is the same as .303 British but if there is any question you should slug your barrel as suggested. I cannot comment on the specific RCBS Dies because I use Lee dies and I bought the proper sized mandrel.
 

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Got a set myself

I reload 7.62x54R for my little sporterized carbine and I use RCBS dies. I've never had a problem with any RCBS dies that I own. Reloading for the cartridge in question is pretty straight forward; just don't get into anything that would overpressure an old military action. Keep it by the reloading manual and don't overtax your firearm.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I haven't had much time to spare with my reloading stuff lately and wanted to post another question. How can I remove the expander insert in the die to the other provided? Currently, when trying to put the final crimp in place the bullet just falls through. I think the current expander is for .311 and I'm trying to load .308. How can I change this?
 

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The Troll Whisperer (Moderator)
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Unscrew the decapping/expander stem from the top of the die. The expander ball is screwed into the bottom of the stem. It also retains the decapping pin. Replace the pin in the alternate expander and screw the ball back onto the stem. Screw the stem back into the die, adjusting so that the decapping pin protrudes a bit below the bottom of the die until it will successfully punch the primer from a fired case.
 

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My RCBS dies for 7.62x54R came with two complete decap/expander plugs. They are easy to switch.

Flash
 

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Walt, From one Kentuckian to another, I bought the Lee 762x54R set and it came with the Lee Factory Crimp die. It came with a .308 expander but a call to Lee got a .311 expander at no cost. I really like the LFC die for these rifle loadings...I use the LFCdie with all rifle loads except my .204 Ruger, but only because I don't have one yet....
 
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