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Thread: Gas checking and sizeing lee 170 gr 309 flat point

  1. #1
    Boolit Mold
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    Gas checking and sizeing lee 170 gr 309 flat point

    This is my fist time sizeing or gas checking rifle boolit. I am using a 309 lee sizeing die. It is taking off the lube/crimp groce one side. Is there somthing I am doing wrong.
    Thanks will
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  2. #2
    Boolit Master

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    Hard to really tell from the pic...but maybe your boolit is out of round or something else out of alignment. Also did you lube your boolit before putting it the size die? You may have actually bent it if you didn't...

  3. #3
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    Hard to tell from the pics but the boolit is not being sized concentrically, something that will effect accuracy. The LEE die is a push through type sizer which is the most concentric method of sizing. Did you use a micrometer to measure boolit roundness before sizing? Could also be as was mentioned sizing the boolit dry. When I need to size a boolit without lube I use a little Hornady Unique case sizing lube, just a very little on your finger tips as you handle the boolit to place it in the die is all it takes.

    Rick
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  4. #4
    Boolit Mold
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    Quote Originally Posted by cbrick View Post
    Hard to tell from the pics but the boolit is not being sized concentrically, something that will effect accuracy. The LEE die is a push through type sizer which is the most concentric method of sizing. Did you use a micrometer to measure boolit roundness before sizing? Could also be as was mentioned sizing the boolit dry. When I need to size a boolit without lube I use a little Hornady Unique case sizing lube, just a very little on your finger tips as you handle the boolit to place it in the die is all it takes.

    Rick
    Rick.

    I was using lyman #2 water droping. I did actually use some hornady unique for lube.. I just checked one that I didnot size and it is .301 at narrowest point and .311 at wide pont. It seems to me the mold would have been made with a mill so this doesnt make since. I do cut the sprue as soon as it solidifies could that be a problem? Sorry if these are basic questions I just never had thus problem with my 5 other lee pistol molds. Thanks will

  5. #5
    Boolit Mold
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    I just micked 5 more and they were round, mabey the one tjat was not round was some type of user error with the mold.

    I just sized a few more sizing the boolit with no gas check and they look good. I then gas checked some nose first and the looked good. I am thinking I may have been bending the boolit trying to put the base and gas check through first.

    Will

  6. #6
    Boolit Master Prospector Howard's Avatar
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    Base and gas check through first? There's your problem. Nose first.
    Last edited by Prospector Howard; 12-04-2013 at 12:00 PM.
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  7. #7
    Boolit Master



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    I was wondering if the boolit was bent but from the pics it's pretty hard to tell. Yes, the biggest benefit of the push through sizer is nose first for concentricity be it the LEE or the Star lubrisizer.

    Question, if your using Lyman #2 why are you quenching them? With the antimony percentage in #2 they should be plenty hard for most everything. No need to shoot diamonds, too hard can be detrimental to accuracy and cause leading. Try shooting them without the quenching, I'll bet you'll be a happy camper.

    Rick
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  8. #8
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    If the checks don't fit the bullet, seating pretty much all the way before you run them through the die, they could push the bullet through crooked, at a slight angle...
    My Anchor is holding fast!

  9. #9
    Boolit Master

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    +1 on not quenching the #2 alloy. In fact, if you plan on hunting with it, you would be better off mixing your #2 half and half with pure lead. This is what I use, and it works well for me.

  10. #10
    Boolit Master
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    I have the same problem with a .311 sizing die I just bought (for a Lyman 450). I can use a smaller die (.308) with no problem, but the .311 mangles the boolits.
    "Experience is a series of non-fatal mistakes"

  11. #11
    Boolit Master



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    Quote Originally Posted by scattershot View Post
    I have the same problem with a .311 sizing die I just bought (for a Lyman 450). I can use a smaller die (.308) with no problem, but the .311 mangles the boolits.
    Do you have a picture of these .311" sized boolits? Something seems amis, dunno what it might be from your post.

    Rick
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  12. #12
    Boolit Mold
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    Thanks for the help everyone. And thanks for the alloy advise as well!
    Will

  13. #13
    Boolit Master
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    Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	89489 This is what they look like. As you can see, they seem to have all the damage on one side. t first, I thought that the sprue was canting the boolits, but the .308 die works well, just a little smaller than I need. The .311 die was used when I got it, and I don't think it's a Lyman product. It doesn't have an "o" ring, and there is no size marked on the top like Lyman does. I can feel a definite "step" at each bearing surface as I operate the handle. I have tried chamfering the opening, but it didn't help. Thanks for any insight.
    "Experience is a series of non-fatal mistakes"

  14. #14
    Boolit Master



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    Interesting. Could be someone's better idea of a sizing die or maybe just someone that thought they knew how to make one. I'd try a proper die, dunno if Lyman makes a .311", I don't use the Lyman sizer but if not try Buckshot here on the forum. I've heard nothing but praise about his work. But anyway, from your description it sure sounds like something poorly thought out with the die. Your right, none of my 30 cal. bores would like a boolit sized to .308", just a tad small.

    Rick

    EDIT to add: It's also possible that you ran across a very old Lyman die, with such a step in them how ALL dies were made many years ago. I've been casting for decades and have never run across such a die but logic would say that they are still floating around out there.
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  15. #15
    Boolit Master

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    If you are going to heat treat a boolit, it should be sized beforehand. Since you're water dropping these, they need to be sized ASAP after being cast. Sizing hardened boolits causes all kinds of problems.

    I seldom heat treat anymore, preferring water dropping, and when I do that, the boolits are sized within hours.
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  16. #16
    Boolit Master
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    Thanks for the info. Lyman still makes the .311, so that's my next step.

    Thanks again.
    "Experience is a series of non-fatal mistakes"

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check