View Full Version : Lyman Tru-Line Jr. Press Vs. the Lyman Tru-line Press
04-03-2005, 03:01 PM
I am fairly sure that the Lyman Truline "Jr". Turret Press takes the small dies as used in the "Ideal" hand tool. I think that the Lyman Tru-Line Turret Press takes the "standard" 7/8 X 14 thread dies and has four die stations. Can anyone confirm this? Does anyone have experience with the Lyman Tru-Line Turret Press? Is it adequate for Full Length rifle case resizing? A friend has a Tru-Line Turret Press in storage that he is wanting to sell. I do not want go to the bother (for him or for me) to even look at it if the press is not a four station or larger and does not take standard 7/8 x 14 dies. Thanks for your time. Any help or information will be appreciated.
04-03-2005, 05:24 PM
Yes, the Lyman Tru-Line Jr. originally took the same dies (5/8" x 30 tpi) as the 310 tools, but with a different shell holder and priming setup. The press linkage was later modified to allow full-length sizing of pistol and short rifle (.30 Carbine, .22 Hornet, etc.) cases, and several of us use and like them. But the big Tru-line was a single-station press with its own non-standard dies; it was introduced about 1939, and derived from the older Ideal "Armory-Type" bench presses.
The first Lyman presses to use 7/8" x 14 tpi dies were the two-station Ezy-Loader and the single-station C-type "Comet". The first turret presses were the 4-station All-American (which was a scaled-up T-L Jr.) and the 6-station Spar-T, which was made into the 1980's. The Spar-T has a good reputation and is fairly easy to locate; it would be your best choice if you want an older (and affordable) Lyman press using standard dies.
04-03-2005, 08:51 PM
Floodgate has it right.
The small-diameter dies used in the True-Line Jr. turret press are also the same as those used in the #310 "tong-type" hand tools.
I own both the Lyman All-American turret (on my home bench) and the Spar-T (mounted in Der Schuetzenwagen for handloading at the range). The 6-station Spar-T draws its name from the single-stage Spartan press, which was modified to create the turret installation. Both use 7/8"x14 tpi dies.
Personally, I prefer the 4-station All-American which I think is a somewhat more-substantial machine than the Spar-T. Of course, I've only used my A-A for 37 years, so maybe it's a bit early to form conclusions? The only drawback to the A-A is that it uses the old Lyman "J" shellholders, but Lyman sells an adaptor for using the regular RCBS/Pacific type universal shellholders. It only costs about $15 for the adapter. The A-A press can be had regularly on Ebay for a good bit less than $100.
Note that the primer feeders from those days do not protect the operator worth a hoot. I avoid such feeders completely and insteadmanually place each primer in the seating punch as needed. The thin brass primer tubes are WAY too flimsy for safety in an "incident". It takes no time at all to hand-feed the individual primers.
The Spar-T in the van cost me just $50 on Ebay, and it had NEVER had a die installed....the paint inside the die holes was utterly untouched. This model would work fine for anyone wanting a decent turret press at a very favorable price.
I like both of them, but my long experience with the A-A has amply demonstrated its abilities to me,and thus influenced my opinions. (WHAT??? ME??? Prejudiced?? Never happen!)
04-03-2005, 09:59 PM
BruceB: Glad to hear your views on the AA Turret Press; as I recall, you also have a couple (or more) of the T-L Jrs. I hadn't paid much attention to the AA Turret until I started looking it up for my last post, but your comments plus the realization that it doesn't overhang the bench but sits entirely on top - thus not blocking shelf or drawer space - inspire me to keep an eye out for one. If a Lyman AA Turret Press turns up on eBay, I'd appreciate anyone who spots it relaying the notice to me; that is, if you don't need it yourself! Though the T-L Jrs. started by using 310 dies, they evolved a bit differently over the years, and I have three or four "generations" of the die sets. Is the "J" shellholder for the AA Turret the same as for the T-L Jr.? And do they use the same priming posts? Actually I decap, clean and check pockets, and re-prime off-line, using a hand tool for the latter; I like to feel what's going on, and auto primer feeds scare me! Thanks, floodgate
04-03-2005, 10:21 PM
Thanks for the information. I will try to find a newer turret press such as the Lyman S-T, or a later version of their turret presses.
04-03-2005, 10:28 PM
No sir, I don't own any of the True-Line Jr. presses. My only experience with that die size was a VERY brief career with a borrowed 310 tool for .45 ACP, INCLUDING driving hand-lubed cast linotype bullets through its sizing chamber. Not a high-production activity, I can assure you. My wife bought me a Spartan C-press for Christmas shortly after that unpleasantness, thank Heaven. I bolted it to a counter right in the kitchen (we were newlyweds, and ya gotta start training 'em early).
There is (or was recently) an A-A on Ebay, but it was going at the inflated price of $125. That is well over what I normally see them bringing. I'll keep an eye out. I had a second A-A mounted in the van, but sold it because it was too high for the limited headroom above the bench. I had to cut off half of the RCBS powder measure's hopper (mounted in the turret) to clear the headliner! The Spar-T , mounting on the front of the bench, is much shorter as far as headroom is concerned.
I believe the J shellholders do indeed fit both True-Line and A-A presses, and I suspect they also use the same priming posts. When converting to use universal-type SHs, the priming posts also have to be changed. Not a big deal, though.
When mounting an A-A on the bench, there is no mechanical stop for the ram travel. Instead, the press is carefully positioned on the benchtop so that the operating handle makes contact with the bench edge just as the linkages come to straight-in-line at the top of travel and then "break" JUST SLIGHTLY toward the operator. By allowing the links to come just past Top Dead Center, any play in the system is effectively removed and this allows a certainty that the ram did indeed reach the top of its designed travel. This is an important factor in installing and using this press.
That's interesting about the die sets evolving differently over the years.
I'm going to have a look on Ebay right now.
04-04-2005, 02:59 PM
I must've either confused you with another Tru-Line Jr. junkie, OR mistook the AA Turret for a Jr. from one of your older posts. Anyhoo, many thanks for the good words and tips on the Lyman All-American Turret press. I just spotted one on eBay (#7146620657) that looks very nice, 4 days to go. Haven't bid yet - waiting on another deal on a Pacific PAKTOOL - but I'd appreciate no-one bidding against "etagdoolf" if/when I do; if someone here DOES really want it, PM me and I'll hold off.
Of course, I need another press like I need another hole in the head, but..
04-04-2005, 06:08 PM
Floodgate, yep, I found the same one last night but got tied up and didn't get time to post it.
Looks good, but didja see the size of those primer tubes? Compared to the Dillon steel-tube shield, for example, there's NO protection for the handloader if a chain reaction starts up.
The reference to a 7/8x14 bushing shows that this A-A is an earlier one, with one station drilled-and-tapped for Lyman's old shotshell dies. That one station is then equipped with the 7/8 bushing to allow normal dies to be used in all four holes.
04-04-2005, 09:28 PM
The Lyman A-A is my favorite press, like Bruce B I've been using mine for around 37 or so yrs. I think I bought it about 1966 or 67 for $35 which was a lot of money back then. It has never gave be any trouble in all those yrs. I taught my daughter to load on it and when she moved to Texas I got her one off a fella that always seems to have one at the shows. He is pretty well stocked with the J type shellholders also. He sells the shellholders for $10 ea, and the presses for $95. He has been raising his prices lately so I don't know if that still holds. The man does have a lot of reloading goodies. He is my first stop at the shows and a lot of times the only guy I buy from. Have cleaned him out of a lot of moulds at fair prices, a new co-ax press for $105. Star lubsizer $120, NIB Ly 45 $40, and a lot of other stuff at good deals. If anyone wants his name and # send me a PM. He is heavy into BPC sillywet long range at this time. Other then that I also have a Spar T that I never set up because of lack of bench room. It looks like a very capable press, just about as stout as the A-A. I use a Lee loadmaster for pistol but I don't like to talk about that one , my blood pressure is high enough.
I had a Tru Line Jr in 1971 and used it for a couple of years as I could use all the 310 dies I had. I loaded a lot of old 45-70 and 45 colt shells on it and as long as you didn't need to ful leangth resize it was a good unit. I wish I had one today just to keep with my other collectors presses.
And another proud user of the AA since 1973.
04-17-2005, 05:39 PM
Ahhh, a Tru-line Jr. discussion is underway here, just so happens I've got 3 of these little buggers, and they are the cats meow.
Believe it or not, I use a 310 die in my All American press to deprime and seat my bullets in .45 Colt brass. They are extremely well made dies and put a just right crimp on my brass.
One of the Tru-line Jr. presses is doing duty on its own metal stand for .45 Auto Rim cartridges.
Don't really need the other two since I've got the AA press, they are in excellent condition, contact me if interested...have pictures. Send a private message.
Ask and ye shall receive...
I picked up a Tru Line Jr. press this weekend and it is being shipped with an assortment of 310 dies. I think I will set it up for 45 Colt for old times sake. Now if I could only find some 45-70 dies.
Does anyone have a die chart for the 310 tools? I would like to get a copy as I am looking at a cigar box full of 310 parts and dies and i don't know what I have. Some of this stuff has been adapted from the old #10 tool and I would sure like to see what I have. When it is all identified i will probably be selling or trading some of it out.
04-20-2005, 07:20 AM
PM me with your email and I'll send you the Ideal Quick Reference Chart from an old Lyman Manual. Regards, Woody
I took my new (old) Tru Line Jr. out of the box today and mounted it on the bench and thought I was going to use it. I didn't remember till too late that it takes a different shell holder than anything else I have. Digging around I found a couple of shell holders, but not what I was wanting. As I was looking I spied a box of shell holders for the Lee priming tool, the tool made out of plastic and remelted toyota bumpers. They are just flat shell holders and I thought with a bottom on them they might work. I took some cut off gun barrel stock and turned and reamed the bottom of the shell holder and clamped them in a centering clamp and brazed the Lee to the bottom parts and quenched. As the French say Viola!!!: instant shell holders. I tried them for priming and full length resizing and no problems, they work like the factory shell holder. I now have shell holders for 45-70, 22 Hornet and 45 Colt. I have a shop drawing if anyone else is in this fix.
That Lyman turret press, of course, is still made in Australia. Called a Super Simplex, if memory serves, I had one years ago. Wish I had tried Super Simplex dies in that Lyman turret but don't think that I ever did.
05-19-2005, 08:43 AM
KCSO, Hey! I did the same exact thing you did with the Lee flat bottom shellholders. I mounted a shaft on the bottom of one in the caliber needed and tacked welded it together...then rebored the priming hole...works great.
But I sent it along with the two TLJ presses I sold to a gent in Elko NV.
But that is a good way to make a quick fix on a shellholder for the TLJ or the Lyman All American presses.
05-30-2005, 08:43 PM
Two things on those shell holders -- Midway sells an adaptor that allows modern standard shell holders to be used, and second, the base of most shell holders will fit down in the hole reserved for their style holders. All you have to do is drill and tap a hole for a higher-up set screw and you've got it made. I think I've got a couple of those old Tru-Lines including one where a guy converted the turret to 3/4-16 TPI and was going to make his own dies out of 3/4 inch hex head bolts. I only have two sets of 310 style dies so never use the presses. Always looking for ideas on what they can be used for. I've already been advised "boat anchor."
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