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Thread: Lee Classic cast & swaging

  1. #1
    Boolit Master at Heavens Range

    Junior1942's Avatar
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    Mar 2005
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    Thumbs up Lee Classic cast & swaging

    My M38 Mosin-Nagant has an oversize bore, so, using Lee push through dies, I swage down cheap Rem 185 gr jacketed .323" bullets to .3155". I tried other jacketed bullets but the jackets split. I swage them in two steps: first, through a .319" die Lee made me ($26); second, through a .3155" Lee die I reamed out from a .314" die using emery cloth.

    I use Lee case lube on the bullets and inside the die. Several other lubes I tried didn't work well at all. My press was an ancient RCBS Jr, and it was stressful on the press and my arm to swage down the bullets. On hopes that it had more leverage, I bought a Lee Classic Cast press and installed it on my bench.

    It works MUCH better and easier than the old RCBS Jr. I estimate the "After" force needed as 1/4 of the "Before" force needed. Before, I stood beside the RCBS press and pushed down the lever with both arms and my upper body. After, I sit in a chair beside the Lee Classic Cast press and push down the lever with only my right arm.

  2. #2
    Boolit Master At Heavens Range 2008 Swagerman's Avatar
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    Junior1942, I found the Lee Classic to be the ideal press to do bullet swaging and sizing for me.

    As long as the ram rises to a top dead center position in its upward stroke it was very easy to complete the work effortlessly.

    This put no undue strain on the press or its linkage. The very bottom linkage attachments on the cones holding the ram in place were a source of worry at first, but proved to not be an issue after 3 years service continuance service.

    I had thought if the cones did present a weakness, I'd just replace them with a solid bolt and nut...but never had to do that.

    I use the Lee Classic press for swaging more than my two Herter's.

    Note: To those who may be considering using the Lee Classic for swaging, you may need to shorten the shellholder to adjust the TDC upstroke to work properly for you. (see picture) You can purchase an extra Lee Classic shellholder from Lee Precision to do this alteration.

    Jim


  3. #3
    Moderator



    JonB_in_Glencoe's Avatar
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    While looking through the posts started by the late Junior Doughty, I came across this one, with an interesting response (with photos) by Jim.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    “If someone has a gun and is trying to kill you, it would be reasonable to shoot back with your own gun.”
    ― The Dalai Lama, Seattle Times, May 2001

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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