Update: I tried something a little unconventional. I removed the decapping pin and collet. I slid a 1/4" ratchet extension into the case and tapped it with a hammer. The case popped out w/o much resistance. The huge gaping mouth of the AE case made that part easier.
Next, I cleaned the die and polished the interior with OOOO steel wool and light oil spun on a pice of drill stock. Spinning with the electric drill to get a decent polish to the die. I cleaned and degreased the die again. I took a cotton "bore mop", chucked on the end of a section of cleaning rod. Generous amounts of Flitz metal polish and buff some more. The die looks noticably smoother now.
Back to the press and try again. My order from Midwayusa had arrived and now I had some Imperial sizing wax. I ran the rest of the brass cases with out any drama. I moved to the nickle cases and was dissapointed. Ripped the rim off the first one, crap. I used the extension to knock it out. I then came up with the only answer possible...
I took out the decapping pin and collet and used the die for sizing only. I figured I could decap in a separate operation. I lubd the case with the Imperial sizing wax and ran the nickle case into the die with much effort (using an RCBS "RS" press). I then slid the extension into the case/die. Tapping on the extension with a hammer and applying slight pressure on the press handle worked. Viola! A PITA, but it worked.
I may still send the die back to Lee as this is not the best situation. $28 for a set of dies? I guess I cannot expect much.
In life, strive to take the high road....It offers a better field of fire.
"Robo is right" Fuzzball