Bullet seating.
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Old 07-28-2010, 01:23 AM   #1
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Default Bullet seating.

When I was working up more loads I started to notice that my Die is seating bullets with .005" (+-). Ex: C.O.L. 2.330-2.335 is this normal? Or could this b some part in my accuracy problem? I do not have that much experience reloading rifle but plenty with shotguns (which is worth about as much as tits on a boar right now.) I was just wondering if that (play) was normal? Or do I need to look at my equipment?(which i have done a good visual inspection) If your wondering what press it is. It is a RCBS rock chucker IV. Bought new loaded maybe 250 (+-) 50 rounds.

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Old 07-28-2010, 03:21 AM   #2
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Dave it could be the amount of force your putting on the handle or the dies you are using. Is your press rocking on it's mounts? Are you using boat tails projectiles? I find that if I chamfer I get more consistent bullet seating.

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Old 07-28-2010, 06:06 AM   #3
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Hunter,
Thanks for the info I will look at my mounting system and c if it rocks. And I am using boat tail bullets and chamfering the cases. The dies are rcbs I check for small pieces of brass in it but it was clean as a whistle. And thanks for the tip on applying the same pressure to handle. I will watch myself in the future.

Thanks again

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Old 07-28-2010, 12:20 PM   #4
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How are you measuring COAL? If you are measuring with calipers from base of case to tip of bullet they will all have some variance. To get a good measurement you need a Comparator like the Hornady L-N-L OAL gauge. This device measures measures the distance from the ogive to the base of the case a much more accurate measurement of OAL.

I highly doubt it is the press as the RCBS RC press is as solid as a tank. You cna and will find that cheap C frame presses like the Lee reloader single stage press will bend and flex causing way to many problems and produce loads with poor accuracy at best. (Don't go turning this into my equipment is better than yours). C style presses are known to produce less accurate ammo.

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Old 07-28-2010, 03:13 PM   #5
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How compressed is the load? Are you using the same brass for all loads?

Variances in neck thickness, neck tension, case length, case volume, powder charge, etc can cause such problems. If EVERYTHING is identical, the load should come out right. ANY variance will cause differences in length, crimp, pressure, velocity and accuracy.

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Old 07-30-2010, 11:22 PM   #6
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"...notice that my Die is seating bullets with .005" (+-)."

A seating die is a steel cylinder with a threaded and secured nose punch, there's no way for it to be the cause of any OAL variation.

OAL variations come from all the things mentioned above plus even the viscosity of the oil used on the press links and including the rythum of your lever operation.

And some comes from the bullets themselves. Most bullets have quite easily measured nose configurations/variations that fall into the range you mention. That's why those worrying about such things tend to measure seating depth off the ogive rather than the point.

How much effect such small OAL variations will have on accuracy is an open question.

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Old 07-31-2010, 07:41 AM   #7
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I am not loading a compressed load. And I am currently looking at a L-N-L gages to measure from the ogive. I am currently using calipers to measure my COL. If any thing was to blame i would say it lays more along the line of using the same pressure on the handle each time. As for the cases I shoot the same lot number. I don't mix any lot numbers on anything (cases, powder, bullets, primers). Consistency equals Accuracy, Accuracy equals consistency!

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Old 07-31-2010, 02:18 PM   #8
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"Consistency equals Accuracy, Accuracy equals consistency!"

If a load doesn't match the rifles need's, consistancy of the load only equals consistant inaccuracy. Meaning that great consistancy, of itself, means nothing. Agonising over trivial OAL differences contributes nothing to accuracy if the load itself is right.

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Old 08-16-2010, 01:19 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuzzball View Post
"Consistency equals Accuracy, Accuracy equals consistency!"

If a load doesn't match the rifles need's, consistancy of the load only equals consistant inaccuracy. Meaning that great consistancy, of itself, means nothing. Agonising over trivial OAL differences contributes nothing to accuracy if the load itself is right.
Fuzzy,
true if a load dont match the rifle it dont match. Being consistent is the only way to achive any accuracy. i make sure all my case sizes, powder chargres, seating depths, are all consistent. changing the seating depth also effects the case pressure, which also effects FPS. which can also effect accuracy. depending on what your deffintion of accuracy is. If it is hitting a bull in the a$$ with a scope shovel consistency don't matter. but if you wana hit the flies off your buddies target at 100 yards then you should be. what i am saying is consistency equals accuracy, accuracy equals consistency. my question is how much it effects accuracy? in an earlier post you said it was an open question?

If i was to take a wild guess in what is causing this diff. would lie in the operation of the lever. as i take hours making sure that there are no varibles in my loading. but i haven't really paid much attention to working the lever with the same force and repatition.

As for the load the search still contiunes.
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Old 08-16-2010, 02:52 PM   #10
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Dave, I rather suspect it's your variable press operation too.


cpttango: "You cna and will find that cheap C frame presses like the Lee reloader single stage press will bend and flex causing way to many problems and produce loads with poor accuracy at best. (Don't go turning this into my equipment is better than yours). C style presses are known to produce less accurate ammo."

I've been doing this a looong time and I have no blind brand loyalty at all so none of this is a 'mine vs. yours thing' but I suspect your comments on the Lee Reloader and other C presses aren't based on actual tests of the presses. I have tested a few and was more than a little surprised at how badly wrong "conventional wisdom" is.

I use a 'Chucker for my main press. I have two of Lee's very small "Reloader" Cs for primer work. A few years agp I got a magnetic base for my .001" reading dial indicator and soon checked a lot of things around my shop. I decided to 'prove' how rigid my RC was and how poor the small C presses are. That isn't what happened tho.

Using the same box of fired .30-06 cases, shell holder and dies, with an RCBS Precision Case Mic to measure that all was done the same, I found the RC springs about 3 thou during FL sizing. Not a lot but sure not rigid. Then the first Lee...it didn't move enough to measure, nor did the second one.

Not saying the small alum alloy Lee C presses are as massively strong as the cast iron RC, that would be silly, but within the limits of their surprising strength, they ARE MORE RIGID! And, as you mention, rigidity IS helpful in assembling precision ammo. Later testing on some old iron C presses showed them to be much less springy than is commonly said.

The press may well be the least signficant component in our whole array of tools. Meaning the skill of the individaul reloader is much more important than the press he uses. I KNOW I can asssemble equally high quality ammo on any common press if I use my own selected dies, components and methods.

As a side issue, I've also measured the output of a lot of dies from all makers but Dillon. I've found as much average internal variation between individual dies of the same brand as between brands, dies of no color or cost is a guarantee of perfection so I drink no maker's Kool-Aid. All of my "selected" die sets have a mix of sizers and seaters from different sets and makers, all chosen for what they actually do, not brand or how pretty their outsides are.

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