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Thread: Star lube die

  1. #1
    Boolit Buddy fa38's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007

    Star lube die

    I have a star lube die that I can not lube thru to lube a bullet. It has several holes in the minor diameter of the die where the lube is supposed to be injected into the bullet lube groove. None of them seem to be open. several had a piece of lead shot in the hole. I drilled the shot out but can not get the drill thru into the inside of he die. I assume they are made of hardened steel. I have tried to use a small diameter punch but its not working.

    Are these holes tapered from the outside to the die interior? I can see something on the interior of the die that looks like it is in line with the exterior holes.

    Would using a carbide drill go thru hardened steel and if so would it screw up the interior of the die?

    Maybe I should just send it to Magma Engineering Company and let them solve my problem.

    Any suggestions?

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
    LUBEDUDE's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    East Texas
    The Magma dies usually have 3 holes around the die on the same plane. There are usually 3 levels or sometimes 2 levels.

    Pick the level that best lines up with your bullet lube groove and top punch via adjustment.

    The other levels are plugged with #7.5 shot so that all lube is only directed into the lube groove with proper adjustment of the top punch. Otherwise, lube will smeared all over your bullet.

    Sometimes guys will order the dies blank and drill their own holes, or add holes to existing dies.
    Last edited by LUBEDUDE; 03-24-2018 at 12:59 PM. Reason: Add


  3. #3
    Vendor Sponsor

    Tom Myers's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Nimrod, Minnesota
    The lube holes in the star dies that I have are of a two-step diameter.
    The larger diameter will accept #7.5 shot and the diameter extending on into the sizing portion of the die are smaller, preventing the pressing of the shot all the way into the sizing portion.

    Try using a drill about half the size of the exterior hole to go on through and clean out the lube holes.

  4. #4
    Boolit Buddy PaulG67's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Use a No. 60 drill for the small hole.
    Paul G

    I am Retired, I was tired yesterday and I am tired today!!!

  5. #5
    Vendor Sponsor D Crockett's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    use your top punch to align the wholes with your bullet then take the die and put it in boiling water to get all the lube off it plug all wholes with 7.5 shot except the ones that line up with the lube grove on your bullet or send the die and some bullets to me and I will do it for you it not hard to do D Crockett

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Oregon Coast
    Before you ruin the die, watch the video from Magma on how to remove shot from the die:


    Hope this helps.

    After a shooting spree, they always want to take the guns away from the people who didn't do it. - William S. Burroughs.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master

    Springfield's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    San Jose, California
    I use a drill about the size of the outside hole. About halfway through I just pull out the drill and the lead shot comes out with it. If not, just get a small scribe tool or something similar with a point on the end and just poke out the remaining lead. It's just lead.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master

    Join Date
    May 2015
    easternshore of va.
    I floated a lube sizing die in my casting pot to melt out the lead shot in the past ,It blackened but still works well . But I don't know if it's softer or harder .

  9. #9
    Boolit Buddy fa38's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    PaulG67-- the .060 drill did the job. I cleaned all the holes out and used some small shot to plug the top and bottom holes leaving the middle set open. It took about 5 tries with different lengths of the stem (by screwing it out a turn at a time) and pushing the bullet into the die to get the correct lube groove on the bullet to accept the lube. It works very well.
    I purchased the sizer several months ago from an estate sale with the .429 sizing die. Hope my Smith likes that size bullet and if not a friend has several lyman dies .429, .430, .430 and he can size some of my bullets until I find what the Smith likes. If its larger I will hone the die out to that larger size.
    Thanks everybody.

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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