357 Sig Headspace: Shoulder Or Mouth... [Archive] - Glock Talk


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09-23-2012, 10:08
Should the 357 Sig Headspace on the shoulder or the head? I have read conflicting data. Also, is there a set of carbide dies for this caliber? I have not been able to locate them if so.

F106 Fan
09-23-2012, 10:17
That is an interesting and ongoing debate. According to SAAMI, the cartridge headspaces on the case mouth. That's the standard.

According to many, and I am inclined to agree until such time as I actually reload some and test for myself, the cartridge actually headspaces on the shoulder.

Still, it's a debate...

Dillon has carbide dies for $133 per set. Ouch!


09-23-2012, 11:28
Also, is there a set of carbide dies for this caliber? I have not been able to locate them if so.

I (and, I think, many more of us) use a Lee 4-hole turret press and a carbide .40S&W die (sans decapping pin) in the 1st hole with a standard (=noncarbide) die set in the other 3 positions. I run the unlubed cases thru the .40 die 1st, then around the other positions completing the reloading process, and then the finished round thru that .40 die again. The latter step ensures that no part of the case has been deformed, etc., in the seating and crimping process. I then cycle EVERY round thru my 31 and its magazines to be sure ALL of them cycle correctly. Some will say that all of that is a waste of time, but both my PD and full-power practice loads...
...NEVER jam or fail to function, and that certainly is worth a few minutes of my time.

09-23-2012, 12:43
Despite what some reloading manuals say, it's the small shoulder. Ge tthe shoulder placement wrong, as RCBS dies do, then you get a round that won't function properly. Early 357sig reloaders made cases out of 40S&W, which resulted in slightly shorter cases, & surprise, perfectly acceptable 357sig ammo. Yes, if the case stretches too much, the mouth of the case may cause a headpsace issue, but the shoulder is the critical factor. One can even cannelure bullets & roll crimp the 357sig, that pretty much takes the case mouth out of the equation.
as noted, Dillon is the only carbide die maker but Hornady has their Nitrate coated ones, but I don't know if that is exactly the same no lube option.

F106 Fan
09-23-2012, 13:05
Since I started using Hornady One Shot lube, even with carbide dies, I will never go back to sizing the cases dry. The lube just makes the process so much smoother and easier on both the equipment and the operator.

As such, I don't see why it is necessary to make so many passes over the brass. I would just buy the Dillon carbide dies (because ALL of my pistol dies are carbide) and be done with it.

Bottle neck rifle cases are resized in one pass all the time. I see no reason that the .357 Sig should be any different. Then again, I have never loaded a single round... :dunno:


09-23-2012, 17:26
Since I started using Then again, I have never loaded a single round... :dunno:

Me too.