View Full Version : Redding precsion seating die
Does anyone one use this seating die? If so how consistant is it in relation to less expensive seating dies and is it worth 75.00? I want a die that consistantly hold a specific oal to + or - .001. Not to sure if this is even possible.
I bought one and used it for maybe the last year or so. I didn't really buy it to try to keep the OAL within +-.01, but rather to be able to have repeatable adjustment when going back and forth from .40 to 10mm and switching between diffrent bullet styles. For me there's nothing more annoying than adjusting the die up and down so for that it was worth it. If you just want consistancy then think more about keeping your dies clean. A little bit of buildup in there can affect your OAL.
Really though, unless you're shooting bullseye or really tiny groups for some reason, I dont see a little diffrence in OAL having much noticable effect on your hits. I was once anal about it (hence the die) and have since stopped worrying so much and started just shooting more :)
I think Greg has hit the nails on the heads.
ANY seating die should be giving consistent results. If it's not, there is a problem somewhere. Either you're compressing the powder so much it is expanding as soon as the cartridge comes out of the die and pushing the bullet back out, or you have crud build-up in the seating stem. I have switched to Dillon seating dies for everything pistol, because they are so easy to disassemble and clean without changing any settings.
As Greg pointed out, the really nice thing about the seating dies with the micrometer adjustments is for changing bullet shape/length or OAL of the cartridge a lot. If you're wanting to have one seat die and use it for a half-dozen or more settings/loads with different bullets, then it becomes more useful. (Personally, I only get this variable with certain rifle calibers, so that's the only thing I have this style die for.)
So, if you are planning on setting the die once and loading all your ammo at that setting, you just need a fixed seating die. (This is what I do for all my straight-walled cartridges and some of my rifle calibers.) My recommendation is set the die once and use that setting for everything.
If you are going to experiment or have lots of different loads for one caliber or you want to experiment very precisely with various seating depths, then the adjustable die is worth it.
I am usoing a Lee seating die and I am fluctuating. + or - .003 does make some difference in SD and velocity which is not a major issue unless I am at max loads. Do you have any tips on the method you use to clean your dies without changing the settins. I am going to get RCBS lock rings.
It's the nature of the Dillon dies. They have a spring clip that locks the seating stem into the die body. Once you set the seating depth to the correct setting, you lock it down, but anytime you want to clean the stem, you pop off the spring clip and the whole stem comes out. Then, you can clean to your heart's content, drop it back into the die, and pop the spring clip back on and nothing changed with the OAL setting.
For most other dies (I've used a lot of RCBS, some Redding, Lee, C-H, Hornady, and others), you have to either unscrew the die from the press or toolhead, or learn to get up inside with something that will break loose the bullet lube that builds up. If you don't want to unscrew the whole die and leave it in the press, I found a heavy-gauge wire (like thick paperclips) that has been softened and with the tip rounded over (I used needle-nose pliers to do this), can be used to reach up inside the die and manually scrape out the lube build-up. Follow this up with some Q-Tips with acetone or Kroil or some other solvent to clean it up and try to preclude more build-up (but it will still happen).
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