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Thread: Gas Check shavings clogging holes in sizing die?

  1. #1
    Boolit Master


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    Gas Check shavings clogging holes in sizing die?

    This was a new one for me.

    I was installing my .225 sizing die in my LAM II tonight, and I noticed some copper colored slivers in one of the lube holes. I use LBT Blue Soft, so the slivers showed up really clearly. I grabbed a sharp probe and proceeded to dig out a mass of lube/copper slivers from the bottom 4 holes of the die.

    I have no idea why this happened. My boolits are fully lubed, I suspect that I am only using the top 4 holes to actually lube them due to their short length. I've been using this boolit/die combination for about 4-5 years, so I suspect this has been building up slowly.

    Any one ever experience this?

  2. #2
    Boolit Master


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    I would clean all lube from the die by boiling in water. Then rub a Q-tip inside the die to see if any burr's snag on the cotton. I would also polish the top inner edge of the die with fine emery paper. Sounds like you have a sharp edge somewhere.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by largom View Post
    I would clean all lube from the die by boiling in water. Then rub a Q-tip inside the die to see if any burr's snag on the cotton. I would also polish the top inner edge of the die with fine emery paper. Sounds like you have a sharp edge somewhere.
    sounds like a good procedure to me
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  4. #4
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick L View Post
    This was a new one for me.

    I was installing my .225 sizing die in my LAM II tonight, and I noticed some copper colored slivers in one of the lube holes. I use LBT Blue Soft, so the slivers showed up really clearly. I grabbed a sharp probe and proceeded to dig out a mass of lube/copper slivers from the bottom 4 holes of the die.

    I have no idea why this happened. My boolits are fully lubed, I suspect that I am only using the top 4 holes to actually lube them due to their short length. I've been using this boolit/die combination for about 4-5 years, so I suspect this has been building up slowly.

    Any one ever experience this?
    This was the thing that stopped me from buying commercial aluminum checks from a certain well known gas check maker and seller. The last batch of 303 checks that I bought online were hard to the point of being brittle and shaved off slivers during seating.

    For that caliber, I now have my own gas check maker and anneal my aluminum strips prior to punching and forming.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master masscaster's Avatar
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    If the sizing die is square where the GC/boolit enter the die then it will shave copper and sometimes even just lead, especially if the boolit is slightly larger than the die itself.
    You can pick up a decent hand reamer at Harbor Freight, or other machining supply store. This will break the sharp edge and put a small taper where the boolit enters. Basically your adding a throat to the die. A little piece of emery cloth on the little finger will remove any left over rough spots from the process.
    All the old Lyman sizing dies were made with a throat to avoid the shaving problem.
    Clean the die good first as stated above.

    Jeff

  6. #6
    Boolit Master Grmps's Avatar
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    After cleaning the die, LIGHTLY polish the inside with 1000, 1200 grit sandpaper wrapped around a dowel using the above Q-tip test and looking through the die to check progress. [with courser sand paper and more polishing you can easilly enlarge the diamiter as you would with a lee pass thru sizer]

    and polish where the boolit goes in with a Dremel, some fine polishing compound and

  7. #7
    Boolit Master

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    Could be you have one of the old style sizing dies with no taper leading into the mouth, or there are burrs on the lube holes, or both. Clean the die and inspect it. Polish if burred and/or taper the mouth. Check the fit of the gas check at the mouth of the die to ensure it will enter it before being sized down.

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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