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Posted: 2/24/2016 12:19:15 AM EDT
As the title says I am trying to get my first press dialed in and I am unclear as to how much to bell the cases and how much to crimp them.

Xl650 and Redding carbide dies so it bells at the powder station and then has separate dies for seating and crimping.

From what I understand, bell just enough to be able to set a bullet in the case as over belling will stress the case and lead to premature failure.  

That said I am using coated bullets which I have also read that you may want to bell them a little extra so as not to shave off any of the coating and expose lead.  

As for crimping I'm not how to tell how much is too much.

I have got everything dialed in as far as COAL and i have a few dummy rounds that I have run through and I figured I could pull them to check if I shaved off any coating but how do I know if I've set the crimp die enough?.  

Any advice you guys have for me before I start messing with the primer and powder would be great.
Link Posted: 2/24/2016 1:21:58 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/24/2016 1:33:44 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/24/2016 1:38:12 AM EDT by ScooterInVegas]
I set the flare "bell" die so the bullet BARELY sits in the mouth of the case. But thats just me. I try to flare as little as possible because I hold the bullet on the up stroke till my fingers touch the die.





<edit> What Dryflash said. The bullet makes a difference. Pistol? Rifle? FMJ? Plated? Cannelure (groove in bullet)?





Dryflash will point you in the right direction.



 
Link Posted: 2/24/2016 2:07:32 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/24/2016 2:28:05 AM EDT by DuBri]
9 mm 147 gr coated (Blue Bullets)

Got COAL at 1.165 to 1.167 these are the round nose bullets so it's kind of tough to measure but they are not varying a lot and they feed okay in my sig 226.

Was planning to load a couple dozen each with HP-38 from 3.0-3.5 gr and shoot some of each in order testing for function and watching for signs of over pressure and then use the rest to test for groups/recoil impulse.  I know hp-38 is  fast powder but from what I can tell 3.5 gr is still somewhat conservative.  

Ultimate goal is low recoil subsonic plinker for when my suppressor clears.

Also to save money because the cheapest 147's are $240/k shipped  

I got my first pistol ever the first week of January and 2 cases of ammo and now I've got enough ammo left for one more range visit if I take a friend  
Link Posted: 2/24/2016 7:25:36 AM EDT
I'm loading the same bullet on a 650.  

I originally set my bell to .382 but because of case length variation some cases weren't getting enough bell.  I changed it to .387 bell and that seems to be the sweet spot.

For crimp I shoot for .377-.378 with these bullets. These go plunk in my Glock.

You will need to pull bullets to make sure you aren't scraping off the powder coat.
Link Posted: 2/24/2016 8:52:06 AM EDT

Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Superluckycat:


I'm loading the same bullet on a 650.  



I originally set my bell to .382 but because of case length variation some cases weren't getting enough bell.  I changed it to .387 bell and that seems to be the sweet spot.



For crimp I shoot for .377-.378 with these bullets. These go plunk in my Glock.



You will need to pull bullets to make sure you aren't scraping off the powder coat.
View Quote

These figures sound about like what I do.





Make sure to pull some bullets to ensure you're not breaking the coating.  Exposed lead will end up leading your barrel.  Bot not enough bell and too much crimp can scrape off the coating.



 

Link Posted: 2/24/2016 9:13:12 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/24/2016 10:05:27 AM EDT
Don't over crimp the coated bullets.  A heavy crimp will also damage the coating leading to a leading problem.  I don't load 9mm but with 38 and 45 I only crimp about .001-.002 inch under nominal case mouth diameter.
Link Posted: 2/24/2016 11:12:42 AM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By dryflash3:
Case mouth dimensions;

  Fired case .380-.384
Sized .375
Belled .382
crimped .376-.378


The bullet should start easily, (especially with cast, coated, or plated bullets) you don't want to scrape the sides of the bullet when you seat.


Best if you crimp in a separate die. I use a Lee FCD.
View Quote



Thank you sir!  Looks like I'm within those specs so I'll try loading some live rounds today
Link Posted: 2/24/2016 11:27:02 AM EDT
setting the crimp.  
Link Posted: 2/24/2016 11:30:02 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/24/2016 11:31:33 AM EDT by 30Caliber]
In both operations, bell and crimp, less is probably best.  It's easy to overdo both.  Go for "subtle".  I set only enough crimp to remove the bell just past the point where they'll drop into the chamber.  I do all of this by feel rather than with measurements.
Link Posted: 2/24/2016 3:02:49 PM EDT
If you don't have enough bell at the case mouth you will crush a case or two when trying seat bullets.

Too much bell and you'll limit case life. You'll develop premature cracks at the case mouth.

I bell my handgun case mouths enough so a bullet just fits securely in the mouth. I do not crimp semi-auto ammo any more than the minimum needed to remove the belling. Case constriction (neck tension) is totally responsible for holding my bullets in place.

In my experience lead and plated bullets need to be belled .001" to .002" more than jacketed bullets because they are .001" fatter and they are softer. If you feel a bump when seating you probably need to open the mouth slightly more.
Link Posted: 2/24/2016 7:55:26 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/24/2016 8:12:41 PM EDT by DuBri]
Ok guys did a couple hundred live rounds.  Couple things I noticed I was looking to verify...  

My COAL was varying a bit from 1.160-1.170.  I'm getting the impression that the coating on these is not entirely even?  Is there anything else I could be doing that would cause this?  Differences in the brass itself?  

even COAL of 1.17x chambers in my barrel and feeds through the magazines so I'm inclined to go ahead and fire it.  No setback from chambering it.  

The thing I was most worried about, powder throw consistency, turned out to be a non event.  I'd set it, check in the middle of a run, and at the end, and it never varied at all (weighed on a mechanical balance not a digital scale).

The COAL sort of bugs me but from what I can tell it shouldn't cause any problems.


ETA:  Should have searched more but I saw in an old post here it was suggested that the differences in COAL may be caused because I'm running all the stations at once when I'm actually loading versus just running one station at a time when I was setting up the dies.  

When I was doing just one case in order to set the dies my COAL was always the same spot on every time.



Link Posted: 2/24/2016 8:14:32 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By DuBri:
Ok guys did a couple hundred live rounds.  Couple things I noticed I was looking to verify...  

My COAL was varying a bit from 1.160-1.170.  I'm getting the impression that the coating on these is not entirely even?  Is there anything else I could be doing that would cause this?  Differences in the brass itself?  

even COAL of 1.17x chambers in my barrel and feeds through the magazines so I'm inclined to go ahead and fire it.  No setback from chambering it.  

The thing I was most worried about, powder throw consistency, turned out to be a non event.  I'd set it, check in the middle of a run, and at the end, and it never varied at all (weighed on a mechanical balance not a digital scale).

The COAL sort of bugs me but from what I can tell it shouldn't cause any problems.



View Quote



I get about the same variance with 147 gr Blue Bullets.  Around .142-.150".  I also get some variance in the crimp: .3755-.378.

I pulled a couple .3755 rounds and the PC wasn't scratched off so I'm OK with it.
Link Posted: 2/24/2016 8:16:02 PM EDT
COAL always varies a little depending on the type of bullet being used. Your seating die touches the bullet way below the tip and that's the part that engraves the rifling.

You are good to go provided they all fit in your chamber and don't stick above flush with the barrel hood.
Link Posted: 2/24/2016 8:20:46 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/24/2016 8:23:27 PM EDT by DuBri]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By borderpatrol:
COAL always varies a little depending on the type of bullet being used. Your seating die touches the bullet way below the tip and that's the part that engraves the rifling.

You are good to go provided they all fit in your chamber and don't stick above flush with the barrel hood.
View Quote



Nope I even checked them in both barrels I have, loaded a magazine with a selection of the longest of the bunch.  Hand cycled and checked for setback.  No problems.  


For getting started I actually took the time to separate some different headstamps.  I found that when I ran out of one headstamp and switched to the other they weren't belling the same and I had to adjust it down a little.  Quick fix and I only shaved a few but rather than sort all my brass and try to dial it in for each headstamp I'm inclined to give it a little extra and risk a shorter lifespan for the brass.
Link Posted: 2/25/2016 12:09:09 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/25/2016 12:37:54 AM EDT
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