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I see a lot of posts regarding minimalist reloading; however I'd be willing to bet that a lot of folks that haunt the BTB web site are anything but minimalists. Lots of firearms, dies presses etc... This tip is aimed at resizing dies for bottle neck cases, but other uses can be found for the basic concept. Let's say that you have a 1903 <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Springfield</st1:place></st1:City>, a model 70, and a Ruger #1, and they are all chambered 30-06. You own 3 different presses as well, and only one set of dies. You may like to size cases only enough to to function. All three rifles as usual have variations in chamber dimensions, and the presses have differences too. If you adjust the lock nut on one press and for one rifle, the sizing may not be to your liking for the other rifles and presses. To make your die work for all situations you need to get some index cards that will fit in your die boxes, I keep a correct shell holder for the particular cartridge in each die set box. You can do this or have only one of each size shell holder. But each time you adjust your sizing die using this method the shell holder should be consistent. I prefer to use hex shaped lock nuts and use a pair to pal nut instead of set screws or other such devices. When initially adjusting to a correct degree of sizing for a particular rifle, start with the die screwed up too high and tighten till you are satisfied with the die adjustment, then remove the case and lower the press handle (raise the ram)completely. There should be a small gap between the shell holder and the bottom of the die. Being careful to not allow the die to turn as you try different blades of a steel feeler gauge till you find a snug perfect fit. Raise the ram with the gauge between the s/holder and die. With the ram completely raised (if it is not fully extended you have not found the correct feeler gauge) all of the slack is removed from the threads and the die is now square to the press the gauge should be very difficult or impossible to move with the ram fully raised. While holding everything square snug the lower lock nut and back it up with the pal nut on top but just enough so it won't work loose. Write the info on the index card that goes into that die set box (gauge size and rifle that you are loading for). Now if you are loading for that rifle in any other press, just use the same shell holder and dies, but loosen the lock nuts, raise the ram, set the correct feeler gauge on top of the shell holder and screw the die down snug and set the lock nuts as before. Make notes as you load for each rifle. The 03 may prefer no feeler gauges, the 70 might like .002", and the #1 .003". It may seem like a hassle but once you have it down you save time and effort for the rest of your life!
 

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First of all, welcome to ShootersForum! Rules are simple, be nice and join in. :)

I have read your entire post and pondered it; I'm still confused. I have never used a feeler gauge for anything other than adjusting a valve train and I honestly can't see where there is any benefit whatsoever, in using them as you describe. It's simple: If you want your cases full-length resized, adjust your die down to within a dime's width of the shell-holder, with the ram extended. If you want to neck size, there are better tools for that. While your proposal claims to save time and effort, I can only see that it greatly complicates a relatively simple process. Further, when resizing cases, the adjustments do not need to be measured in thousandths...such accuracy at this stage of the loading process is extraneous.

Save the precision work for neck alignment/concentricity, charge weight and seating depth. For resizing, keep it simple, friend.
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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I get it. I like to push the case shoulder back only 0.002" or so when full-length resizing. Perhaps a bit of a hassle but .... brass lasts longer, and doesn't seem to hurt accuracy. Gave up on neck sizing years ago.

Don't reload for multiple guns in the same chambering but if I did the above is probably what I would do.

To each his own.
 
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