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Thread: Lee press button stuck

  1. #1
    Boolit Master
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    Lee press button stuck

    Got a Lee Challenger press from the Gunshow last week.
    It was only $10, with two bushings. Looked almost brand new.
    Found out why it was cheap.
    Button that holds the bushing in place is stuck down.
    Reading about it on the web, it seems this is a common problem.
    Lee posted that a hold should be drilled and a screw inserted to pull the button up.
    Seems like a plan.
    Anyone else have this happen????
    Any other way to un-stuck the button????

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
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    Have never seen one so suggestions might be worthless. 1: Put a drop of penetrating oil on the button and then tap on the frame to jar it loose. If that doesn't work, try option 2. 2: Try super glue on the end of a rod. Glue the rod to the button and pull it up

  3. #3
    Boolit Master Grmps's Avatar
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    I'm in the same boat as ulav8r and agree with him
    I'd try soaking it in a 50/50 solution of acetone and ATF you cold keep applying it or inverse the press and stick it in a bowl of acetone and ATF. then tap the frame. (acetone not good for paint)
    Just brainstorming
    You could heat the area with a heat gun then put a frozen metal rod on the button to see if that loosens things up (not sure it would be so good for the paint)
    epoxy or Liquidmetal wield a small nut on the button to "encourage it if needed now and at a later date

  4. #4
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    JonB_in_Glencoe's Avatar
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    well, I know I will be putting a bit of oil on my 'now functional' breechlock button, thanks for the heads up, I was unaware of this common condition.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master

    gwpercle's Avatar
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    Could you go all "cave man" old school and just screw the dies into the stuck bushing....or is screwing things in and out no longer politically correct or allowed.

    I have been reloading for 50 years without a breech lock.....just don't see the big burning need . I rather enjoy screwing .

    Gary
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  6. #6
    Boolit Master
    DerekP Houston's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gwpercle View Post
    Could you go all "cave man" old school and just screw the dies into the stuck bushing....or is screwing things in and out no longer politically correct or allowed.

    I have been reloading for 50 years without a breech lock.....just don't see the big burning need . I rather enjoy screwing .

    Gary
    LOL that was my thought too. I have all the bushings for my LNL AP but I still screw the dies in one at a time and check for function before moving on to the next. Just my style I suppose.
    My feedback page if you feel inclined to add:
    http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...raight-Shooter

    Thanks Yall!

  7. #7
    Boolit Master

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    Hit it with penetrating oil and let soak work for a day or two. If it dosnt come up on its own try tapping on the frame lightly and quickly with a small hammer to create a vibration to help loosen it. Also look on the under side for a set screw that plugs / holds everything in from the bottom. This may also be a pressed in plug and hard to see thru the paint. If its there then the hole goes thru and can be removed that way. While it may be gummed up or frozen it may be a broken spring that will need replacing. Last ditch senerio is to cut a screwdriver slot in the top surface with a .030 cut off wheel and dremil tool, the try twisting it to loosen it.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master
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    It's been soaking with PB Blaster since I noticed it.
    I did tap on it with a punch and it's still stuck.
    The glue on the top sounds like a good idea.
    I'll clean it up and give it a try.
    Looking at it, it looks like the button is swagged in somehow. No hole on the bottom, or way to take it out from the top.
    I've never had one of these before. It was cheap enough to give it a try.

  9. #9
    Boolit Master
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    For what you paid for it, $10.00, I'd epoxy the bushing in place and use it as is the old fashioned way.

  10. #10
    Boolit Man jeepguy242's Avatar
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    punch and hammer, my button has been stuck down for 3 years, havent needed it, the bushings stay in place fine

  11. #11
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    Handloader109's Avatar
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    Mine stuck down last year. I use the press to try out loads before I go to my Dillon and for low volume. I don't have enough bushings to leave on dies, so I use press to hold bushing so I can unscrew die. Got to get a screw to put in and pull it up I guess.

  12. #12
    Boolit Master
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    Had some time to work on the button today.
    Drilled a hole in the bottom.
    Made a mistake and drilled the first hole to close to the arm. Drill wouldn't fit, so I drilled another hole with more clearance.
    Drill the hole so it will come out close to center of the button hole.
    Used a nail to tap out the button. It was stuck real tight.
    I think the guy I got it from was a little unset, and hammered it a little to much.
    Button is held in by the spring.
    I sanded the hold and the button for a smooth fit.
    Lubed it up with grease and pushed it back in.
    If your button is not stuck. It's easy to pull it out. Just grab it with a pliers and put it out.
    Pull out the spring.
    Sand to for a smooth fit.
    Put the spring on the button.
    lube with some grease.
    Push it back in.
    Save yourself from drilling the hole.
    Click image for larger version. 

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  13. #13
    Boolit Master slim1836's Avatar
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    Mine was not stuck that bad, all I did was put some penetrating oil on it and tapped it a bunch while pushing down on it. It fimally popped up. I keep it lubed now.

    Slim
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by abunaitoo View Post
    I've never had one of these before. It was cheap enough to give it a try.
    Mine did it too, and this is one reason why I chose the LNL system for my press.

    And where as it is not as cheap as the Lee Press you wouldn't be having this problem with one of mine, in fact you wouldn't be having any problems at all,,, you would just be happy everytime you touched it.

    Not one complaint with over 125 sold!!!

    Randy
    "It's not how well you do what you know how to do,,,It's how well you do what you DON'T know how to do!"
    www.buchananprecisionmachine.com

  15. #15
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    Walter Laich's Avatar
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    pictures do a great job of explaining solution. For awhile I thought you were going to drill the button

    guess I a visual person
    NRA Life
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  16. #16
    Boolit Master
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    The button is solid. i guess you could drill a hole and put a screw in ti to pull it out.
    My thinking was if it got stuck once, it might get stuck again.
    By having the hole on the bottom, I can pop it up if it get stuck again.
    Easy to drill because it's aluminum.

  17. #17
    Boolit Master RogerDat's Avatar
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    Just tossing this out there. Aside from sand and lube before it gets stuck (forewarned is forearmed) Heat then hitting with penetrating oil can work well. The application of the lubricant to the hot surface causes a contraction which helps break things loose but in addition the oil will follow the heat as it flows away from the oil application. Do be aware that WD40 is explosive when it vaporizes on a hot bolt, shouldn't need that sort of heat for this but if you use a micro torch you might want to remove the flame from the area before application of penetrating oil. But hey your eyebrows so your call. Trust me on this one.

    Blow dryer or heat gun will probably work as well. Heat expands, quenching contracts to break loose and the oil flows into the part following the heat. Same as flux or solder does.

    Do appreciate the pictures of the drill and tap out with nail solution. Seems like Lee would put that touch extra lube or finishing into that part just to avoid the issue.
    Je suis Charlie
    Scrap.... because all the really pithy and emphatic four letter words were taken and we had to describe this way of getting casting material somehow.
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  18. #18
    Boolit Master LAKEMASTER's Avatar
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    Mine had paint on one side of the button. Removed the button, scraped paint of,cleaned the cavity it fit into and all has been well.


    Just wanted to state my experience for anyone else having an issue
    Lee Loadmaster - Lee O-frame - Lee Melting Pot - Lee......... EVERYTHING

  19. #19
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    jimkim's Avatar
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    Looks like Lee would change the lock to a crossbolt safety style release. It would probably work better, and be easier to produce.

    Sent from my VS880 using Tapatalk

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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