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Old 10-03-2011, 20:37   #1
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Lynnwood, WA
Posts: 6,101
.380 Auto set-up on a XL650

This is a follow up to my inquiry thread regarding .380 AUTO dies, options for seating and crimping. I finally got a little time to get some bits and piece setup that I ordered/received over the past few wekks and got the press dialed in.

I'm loading on a XL650 using a .223 conversion with .380 case feeder tube adapter and 9mm powder funnel. The interchangeability of the 9mm/.223 conversions resulted in a total $10 cost to complete my machines .380 AUTO conversion.
I started with a Horandy new dimension die set for the .380 AUTO which consists of a full sizing and combined seating / crimping (roll) die. Soon to find out that the seating / crimping die wasn't working very well with the Bear Creek moly 95g RN bullets I was trying to load. The moly was getting shaved as it was seating resulting in clogging the dies. Based on that experience and advise from the previous thread I obtained a RCBS taper crimp / seater die and run it in the final station for crimping only.
So the die setup is as follows:

Station 1, Horandy sizer/decapper.
Station 2, Dillon powder drop with extra small powder charge bar and F (9mm) funnel.
Station 3, OPEN
Station 4, Horandy seater/crimper, with the crimp back off and seating stem replace with the Horandy micrometer dial stem.
Station 5, RCBS seating /taper crimp, crimping to .379 and the seater backed off.


The set-up works great, the extra small charging bar gets my HP-38 drops below 2g to work up, where the standard small charge only would get me to about 2.9 at the absolute lowest cranked down.

The Horandy micrometer dial stem was a little extra bonus that Amy bought of my Midway wish list for my birthday. I have to say it isn't the equivelent of the Redding Competition seating die I have for 9mm as you cannot zero it in the middle of a range. However, for the price provided you already have Horandy dies it's a nice option to have getting your loads dialed in and recorded, currently I'm loading 3 different RN profiles for .380 at different OAL's so knowing where to adjust on the scale before hand makes it a quick twist to dial it in a repeatedly get consistent results.

I only got far enough to get 10 test loads at 2.7 to 3.1 in 0.1 increments. I'll be testing and recording velocities with the chrono this weekend. Gun to be used will be a my Keltec P3AT.
Glock 3rd Gen G19/G34, 4th Gen G17 FDE, G26,
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