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Thread: How can I swage with an rcbs A2?

  1. #1
    Boolit Buddy
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    N. Canton, Ohio

    How can I swage with an rcbs A2?

    I have an A2 from 1966 I believe. It has the 7/8' 14 adapter and is cast steel. It has a 1.25 main ram with a smaller ram extention for the shell holder that is pinned into the larger base ram.
    Were these not used back in the day for swaging?

    Any help would be appreciated, thanks

  2. #2
    Boolit Master

    rancher1913's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2015
    plains of colorado
    my problem was crushing the shell holder area on the ram, could not get the shell holder in or out. picked up a big max with the threaded shell holder and it works like a charm.
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  3. #3
    Boolit Master
    labradigger1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    west virginia
    I crushed the smaller ram in my 2A while swaging. A cheap Lee c press was almost a direct swap. C-H makes swage dies as do others in the smaller 7/8-14 size.
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  4. #4
    Vendor Sponsor

    BT Sniper's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Oregon next to the river
    Looks like a strong press. The shell holder slot is the week link when using any type of reloading press ram for swaging, it will compress over time to the size of the base punch that slides in it, once it is compressed a bit you can still get shell holders or base punches in and out, just needs a little help from a simple punch and mallet usually.

    If I was using the A2 with that interesting 2 part ram held in with a pin, I would have a machine shop make a new top half with say 1/2-20tpi threaded top to accept threaded base punches then save the shell holder ram for reloading.

    Certainly looks like the press would be strong enough. When it comes to swaging bullets the smaller the bullet the less pressure is usually required to make the bullet, of course the opposite is true when it comes to bigger bullets.

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  5. #5
    Boolit Buddy
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    N. Canton, Ohio
    Thanks for the quick reply/suggestions
    And, BT, are base punches 1/2" 20 threads? I can make that ram myself. Do you have dies for sale that I can use in the A2? I also have an old style rock chucker, it has a 1" ram and is also cast steel. would this press be better suited for swaging .55 gr .224 and .308 bullets? Or should I sell the A2 and buy a swage press?

  6. #6

    Pressman's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    In the Gopher State of Minnesota
    BT has the right idea, RCBS used a special top section for swaging that fit their dies only.
    Antique Reloading Tool Collector, Historian and Writer
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    email: pressman@antiquereloadingtools.com

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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
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