Lee Collet dies and neck consitency

Discussion in 'Reloading Forum (All Calibers)' started by 10at6, Feb 26, 2020.

  1. 10at6

    10at6 Silver $$ Contributor

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    Yep. I have to chuck some of my mandrels up and polish them down a bit. I always polish just a thou or two taper to the mandrel also. Below the sizing section.
    I don't get ridges I can see or feel.
    My point in the post was, I wish someone would build a more precision version of this die because I think they have real benefits
     
  2. Homerange

    Homerange

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    Results from LCD's are entirely how you use them and little about how they are made.
    Setting them up like Valentine takes some care so to not crush the necks and leave collet ridges on them plus even if using the Lee or Valentine setup method a double NS with a partial turn of the brass is how most use them. Once necks work harden some a dwell time can be added to the operation to reduce spring back and so better maintain neck tension.

    Most folks that have been using LCD's for a while know all this stuff.
     
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  3. Straightshooter1

    Straightshooter1 Gold $$ Contributor

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    It definitely flows for me, though I'm sure how much so really depends on how much pressure the collet is putting on the anvil. When I use my LCD I get flow on both ends of the neck, ~ .001 at the shoulder as the shoulder is moved some and .002 - .003 at the mouth. Some of the flow goes into the little gaps between the collet fingers leaving tiny ridges, which I simply press them away by turning the case 1/8 turn leaving the neck surface is good shape.

    As far as run out goes, my fired case have almost no runout out (like something less than .0005) of the gun and after running them through my LCD the runout might be as much as .0005 or less. So, I like using my LCD for sizing the neck and because of the little bit of flow at the neck I'll always bump the shoulders afterwards to get consistent head space.
     
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  4. fyrewall

    fyrewall

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    I asked my smart cousin who has a degree in this stuff (metals) and she got into like plastic deformation vs. elastic deformation. Apparently, when the Lee collet die squashes the neck down to resize it, so bullets are held by neck tension, plastic deformation occurs in that the atoms in the brass are rearranged so the brass will remain dimensionally changed. Work hardening is also a factor causing spring back to occur leading into dwell time. The plastic deformation occurs at about 50 thou lbs./inch. Going onto what I think - since the plastic deformation occurs the flowing brass has to go some where - either radially or longitudinally (like up - down); this event would encourage more neck wall uniformity.

    I am a real fan of Lee collet dies and use them for .204 R, .22-250, .243, 6mm Rem (also work for 6mm AI), 6.5-.308 (use .260 collet die) 6.5X47L (modified .260 collet die), .280, & .308. As expected, I find the degree or lack of work hardening a factor.

    After running brass thru the collet die it goes thru body dies. I compress necks 3X with 15 sec intervals & rotate thinking this will be good for dwell time and iron out ridges caused by flowing brass.
     
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  5. PopCharlie

    PopCharlie Silver $$ Contributor

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    I did not. But, I should not need to. The dies were supposed to be custom honed to the bass and bullets I sent them.
     
  6. Rocketvapor

    Rocketvapor

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    Standard size and Undersized mandrels are available for about $5 each.
    Lee will custom fit die for $$'s.
    I needed a 22 Nosler, not normal stock.
    Bought a .223 collet, a spare mandrel and an undersize mandrel.
    Shaved about 0.035" off the bottom of the collet, polished down a standard mandrel about 0.001".
    Have 3 different sizes available now if I want more or less neck tension.
    Collet die under $30, two mandrels $10.
    The mandrels also work in my unmodified .223 collet die.
    Cold blue on modified die.
     
  7. Dan Calhoun

    Dan Calhoun

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    I bought one of these Collet sizers a month back but never set it up. Well after reading all the comments last night I went out and set it up and ran a hundred LC's through it after body sizing and what'll you know really straight necks running .001 to .0015. I'm impressed for a 21 dollar die.
     
  8. sqrlgtr

    sqrlgtr Silver $$ Contributor

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    I’ve also had good luck with the lcd dies hard to beat on anything you don’t turn the neck on.If I’m turning necks for tight chamber completely cleaning them up I will use a bushing die. I usally bump um with a redding body die also..When I first started using the lcd’s I would get a little on the heavy side and leave the ridges on the neck but finally figured out how to set them up with the rockchucker to cam over. I actually popped the top off of a223 die I was so heavy handed when I first started using the lcd’s:eek:.First die I used after coming from the lee loader you had to use a hammer with lol..better be careful bout to show my age with that lee loader remark..
     
  9. Homerange

    Homerange

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    The LCD can provide a delicate feel unlike any other brass or neck sizing.
    The observant among you can feel the neck yield as the collet squeezes it to the mandrel and there's little need to compress the neck much further however this more so applies to relatively new brass until the neck work hardens some but hey by then you've just loaded twice what the FL guys do for the same mount of brass hardening.
    This often overlooked advantage is what sent me down the LCD path. :)
    YMMV
     
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  10. Iowa Fox

    Iowa Fox Silver $$ Contributor

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    You could polish the mandrel but for most collet neck sizers Lee sells undersize mandrels cheap thru places like Midway and Titan reloading. Lee will give you a part if you email them. I'm not sure about the 6BR the mandrel might be shorter. A guy should have about 3 mandrels in different sizes for each collet die plus a Redding body die.

    I'm sure that Lee is statistically on top of sales numbers and forecast but I can't help but think the 6BR should be an everyday catalog item.

    Lee actually needs to take their great neck collet die one step farther. They need a body die, either to be sold with the collet die or both separately. They know everybody full length sizes every time. But heck, as long as Redding offers their great body dies I'm happy.
     
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  11. Homerange

    Homerange

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    Yes well that's not a bad idea except for my 223 LCD where I have never FL sized brass.
    YMMV ;)
     
  12. Bindi2

    Bindi2

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    I rarely FLS and I use my brass at the upper end. LNCD ONLY.
     
  13. Rocketvapor

    Rocketvapor

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    Maybe someone could measure base to shoulder and report growth with a LCD.
    I don't see any. Maybe a little bit in the neck.
     
  14. pertnear

    pertnear Gold $$ Contributor

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    It would be interesting if someone would design a roll sizing machine that only did the necks on bottle-neck cartridges. I'm just thinking out loud...

    https://www.rollsizer.com
     
  15. bsekf

    bsekf

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    How about a collet die in each caliber and then spacers for each cartridge. You would have to decap in a separate step. I use a pile of washers to size 7x57 and 7x444 with a 7-08 Lee collet die.

    Bill
     
  16. rogn

    rogn Silver $$ Contributor

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    Ever since Ive read about neck ridges Ive tried to create them. Ive never been able to get any. And I would swear I could ruin a cast steel anvil with a styrofoam cup. Im guessing I have about 23 different LCDs and prefer them to any others. Have to FLS every so often and usually have the Lee FL die. Then I collet size them. Ive tapered the contact end of the mandrel in most cases and use these to expand the necks. I have a very passionate hatred for expander balls, better to call them distortion balls. Also I think I read about 3 cases of people crushing cases when the ball is up in the neck zone and trapping the neck.

    The only issue Ive had with collet dies has been a tendency to crush cases with oversized or burred necks. A quick pass with an outside debur eliminates that problem.

    A common thread with failures of LCD seems to be the "acronym" "RTFM".
    Most times I see les runout with LCDs than I do with any FLS. But thats me.
     
  17. Rocketvapor

    Rocketvapor

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    My modified .223 collet for 22Nosler to size all of the neck.
    Shaved 0.035" off bottom of collet.
    Case length is OK, no washers needed.
    C-clip on mandrel not needed except for 6MM Hagar cases with thicker web and base.
    Could shorten mandrel some.
    Cold blued to ID from .223 die
    Modified-Collet.jpg
     
    Last edited: Feb 29, 2020
  18. T-shooter

    T-shooter

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    I polished the mandrels, have a couple different sizes, and removed the stem on one to be able to tighten up necks without removing the primers. Also turning the end down where they start into the necks makes them much easier to use.
    Mandrels.jpg
     
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