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Thread: What do I use to flair rifle cases for cast?

  1. #21
    Boolit Master RU shooter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    SW Pa.
    If you already have a 38/357 die set you can use the belling die if you can adjust it up high enough
    If you find yourself in a fair fight, your tactics suck!

  2. #22
    Moderator Emeritus / Trusted loob groove dealer

    waksupi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Somers, Montana, a quaint little drinking village,with a severe hunting and fishing problem.
    I use my Toolman needle nose to stick in a case mouth and give it a twist.
    The solid soft lead bullet is undoubtably the best and most satisfactory expanding bullet that has ever been designed. It invariably mushrooms perfectly, and never breaks up. With the metal base that is essential for velocities of 2000 f.s. and upwards to protect the naked base, these metal-based soft lead bullets are splendid.
    John Taylor - "African Rifles and Cartridges"

    Forget everything you know about loading jacketed bullets. This is a whole new ball game!

  3. #23
    What RU Shooter said...I had a spare set of .357 dies, set the expander to do my 35-338 brass
    Don't want no one to git hurt, but if you're gonna have a wreck, I wanna watch.

  4. #24
    Boolit Master

    cwlongshot's Avatar
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    Jul 2012
    Central Connecticut
    I agree the Lyman M-DIE is THE CAST BULLET shooters best friend!!

    Proper and consistent neck tension is THE MOST IMPORTANT part of your reload.

    NRA Life member REMEMBER, FREEDOM IS NOT FREE its being paid for in BLOOD.
    Come visit my Utube page!!


  5. #25
    Boolit Buddy
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Both the Lee universal and a caliber specific M die are nice to have around. I keep the Lee die around for stuff I don't load much of or if I want to try something new but once I get into casting for a caliber the M die is nice to have so it can be set up and left for the right amount of flair. I've used the Lee die on the progressive press to get a little flair on a case mouth to help set flat base bullets when using a bullet feeder as well.

  6. #26
    Boolit Buddy Aunegl's Avatar
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    Jan 2011
    S.E. WI
    Lyman M dies works for me.

  7. #27
    Boolit Master

    EMC45's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    East TN Mountains...Thanks be to God!
    I too used a pair of needle-nose pliers (press in and turn) and a self-centering Starret punch (used the tapered portion bumped into the case mouth).

    I learned quickly that the Lee Universal expander die was the way to go. I know there are others on the market, but the Lee has done everything I have needed.
    You can miss fast & you can miss a lot, but only hits count.

  8. #28
    Boolit Man joe leadslinger's Avatar
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    Jan 2019
    Can't go wrong with the Lee Universal expanding die along with NOE Expanders.

  9. #29
    Boolit Buddy Wild Bill 7's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    S.W. Florida
    I used a tapered punch also before I bought the Lee flair die.

  10. #30
    Boolit Master

    dondiego's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Milan, MI
    I have used a .50 BMG bullet to good effect. The core of an armor piercing BMG bullet is also a good prick punch.

  11. #31

    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    NW GA
    Ive always used Lyman M dies when needed.

  12. #32
    Boolit Master Ed_Shot's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    North Texas
    Quote Originally Posted by cwlongshot View Post
    I agree the Lyman M-DIE is THE CAST BULLET shooters best friend!!

    Proper and consistent neck tension is THE MOST IMPORTANT part of your reload.

    +1 for Lyman M Dies.

  13. #33
    Use a 223 case
    Maybe a steel one if you like, but a brass one should work for 35 cal.A 243 or 6mm case will work too. A round center punch.

  14. #34
    AKA: GRMPS Conditor22's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2018
    I also use the Lee universal expander with the NOE expander plugs. You can tailor the case necks to get just the right tension without downsizing the boolit.

  15. #35
    Boolit Master 44magLeo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Lebanon, NY
    The Lee Universal Expander opens the mouth to a funnel shape. You need to adjust carefully so as not to over expand. If you over do it the case mouth gets to big to fit up into the seating die and can crumple the case mouth.
    The Lyman M dies has a long expander section that has a step in it. The smaller diameter should be about .001 smaller than the bullet, After the step it should be about .001 over bullet diameter.
    When you expand with the M die You adjust the expander to enter the case far enough so the step enters the case mouth about 1/32 in. This lets you set the base of the bullet down into the case.
    The 1/32 in of the neck is larger than the bullet so it can't shave lead off the bullet.
    You don't really need to use a crimp die to remove this .001 expanded area unless you want to or need to.
    The NOE expander plugs are set up like the Lyman M expander but fit in the Lee Universal expander die.
    You can use one body then have expanders to fit all your cartridges.
    I have the Lee UE die with NOE plugs. The NOE plugs aren't expensive so having a selection of sizes for caliber gives you options.
    Like If you have several 30 cals but they need different dia. cast.
    I also like the M style expanders for doing jacketed bullets too. The step help start the bullets straighter.
    I also like the Lee collet Factory Crimp dies. You can get a good heavy crimp with out risking crushed cases.
    The 44 Mag lee dies I have came with the carbide FCD. I found it ok for jacketed bullets. In my Marlin 1894 44 Mag cast bullets need to be .432-.433 for best accuracy. The carbide FCD has the carbide ring that sizes the case after the bullet is seated. This squeezes the case enough to size the cast bullet down to small the shoot well.
    I bought the Collect crimp die for the 44 and it don't squeeze the cast bullets down.
    I like the Collet FCD's because if I don't seat a bullet to the crimp groove it has enough power to crimp into even a jacketed bullet where there is no crimp groove.

  16. #36
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    barry s wales uk
    Lee expander is a good tool ,cheap enough for me.

  17. #37
    Boolit Master Murphy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Idabel, Oklahoma
    Quote Originally Posted by Pablo 5959 View Post
    The NOE expander plug in the Lee universal die is the ticket for me.

    I have to agree with Pablo. Order the LEE Universal Expander and go with NOE's expanders later if the need arises. But that's just my 2 worth.

    If I should depart this life while defending those who cannot defend themselves, then I have died the most honorable of deaths. Marc R. Murphy '2006'.

  18. #38
    Boolit Master
    Petander's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    To flare is one thing,to expand is another. Everything else being the same,expanding necks can make or break a load.

    Lyman M-die is a solid & simple solution as long as it's large enough for your particular bullet. A large,soft bullet likes more expansion than a smaller dia hard cast.

    It's possible to flare too much,sometimes a seater die size/plug shape start seating crooked and you get shaving even with a well visible "trumpet" flare. With M die you can easily adjust flare just right,expansion staying the same. Otherwise excellent Hornady seaters can be tight and the sleeve interferes with the flare. Ease up on the M flare part just a tad.

    NOE plugs (with Lee die) work the same plus you have many size options. Buy a few adjacent sizes. Practical when testing different bullet diameters.

    Amongst other mistakes,I overlooked proper expansion when I started out. Proper neck tension without swaging or shaving the bullet just makes life so good

  19. #39
    Boolit Master
    Mr Peabody's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    I used a center punch out of my tool box for quite awhile, the taper on the shank flared the case just right. And I didn't have to spend any money!

  20. #40
    Boolit Master s mac's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2013
    southwest mo
    Haven't used the NOE tools, I have used Lyman's M dies, I got started using RCBS expander dies, seem you can buy any size I've looked for, pretty reasonable, have a nice variety.

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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