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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
One question I have: Are people seating and crimping in the same motion? I have heard this isn't the best way to go. Hopefully I'm not opening a can of worms. I usually seat the bullets and then I back the seater off and move the whole die down until I have a nice light crimp. I usually wait til I have 100 brass ready to go before I start a new batch. I like consistency as much as anyone else, am I wasting my time by doing it the way I have been loading 45-70? I don't usually crimp my .308, .243, or 30-06. They seem to do just fine and it's one less step I might screw up.
 

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Personally, I like to seat and crimp in the same step. However, I can certainly understand those who believe it is best done in two separate pulls of the handle. I am VERY persnickety when it comes to proper and uniform case length, so one step works out well for me.
 

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giarc,

Like Dr Mike, I seat and crimp the bullets in the same die and have never had a problem.

Also, there is no need to back off the seating stem if everything is properly adjusted. Just do it all in one step.

Have done it that way for many years and it works great in my 45/70 using a Hornady three die set.

Crusty Deary Ol'Coot
 

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Richard Lee thinks seating and crimping needs to be two separate operations but he also wants to sell you FCDs.:flute:

If you load with a 4 station progressive press then a separate crimp die doesn't affect the time to load. If I was loading with a single stage press then I would want to seat and crimp in one step.


BB
 

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The only advantage to seating and then crimping is if you are using the Lee crimping die. The RCBS dies give a roll crimp while the Lee crimp die is a four finger collet that squeezes the brass from the sides giving it the look like that of so many factory rounds. In heavy recoil rounds using jacketed bullets, I will use the Lee crimp but for everything else, the roll crimp does just fine, and it is a lot faster.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Awesome, thanks guys. I'll try my hand at doing it that way. All of my cases are trimmed to the exact same lenth, so they should all be the same lenght. I keep a brass as a blank to set my case trimmer every time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I'm using a Horniday die on a Lee turret press that I removed the bar from. I couldn't load rifle rounds with it due to it turning. Proper seating requires spinning the cartridge 180 degrees. I also have have acquired a lee single stage and an Arbor press. I don't have a 45-70 die for the Arbor press. The single stage is mainly used for depriming, priming. The Arbor is used with my other rifle cartridges. I have really stepped up my process in the last six months. Added an extra beam scale for powder measure has been the most noticeable improvement. I was just using an electronic scale, and found out how bad they wander.
 

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I have found that seating and crimping 45-70 at the same time requires cases to be trimmed EXACTLY the same, and the die to be set EXACTLY right.I did it this way for years.
When I moved to crimping after seating, my case life extended considerably. I lost less brass to crumpled cases. Bullets seated in the rifle better. I got a better crimp. I got more accurate ammo.

A Factory Crimp Die is cheap, and it really makes a world of difference in handloading. You dont have to have one, but once you do you will kick yourself for not getting it sooner.
 

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I seat and crimp at the same time. Works excellent for me. The crimp is rolled so nice. So nice I wont let anyone near that die for fear I will lose that perfect crimp. lol
 

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I seat and crimp t the same time for my 45-70, but in my 45-60 every once in a while the recoil makes the projectile slide back into the case, and the Lee Factory Crimp Die stops that from happening. I don't know exactly why it works, but it does, so I'm not going to question it. The FCD probably makes a stronger crimp due to the squeezing of the bullet maybe?
 

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If the dies are adjusted correctly seating and crimping in one pass is the way to go. I have a LFCD that was used one time....now it sets on a shelf gathering dust. It was an extra step in the process that showed a slight reduction in accuracy. So the LFCD was retired.
 

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Just don't get a Lee "FCD" without the collets.

I bad mouthed all the FCD until I found out they really did have a good one.

Been there and done that with the type that has the carbide ring in the case mouth and it was the pits.

Couldn't figure out why everyone liked the FCD until I found that Lee had two kinds.

There is something to say about bikerbean's comment at the beginning of his post. Richard Lee does have a nickel invested in you buying his products.

Guess I'm lucky, but can't ever recall needing to trim a handgun case to have a good crimp with a three die set, and have yet to need to trim my Starline 45/70 brass, some of which has now been fired five times.

Been using 3 die sets since the early 70s and they have always worked fine.

Crusty Deary Ol'Coot
 

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I use the FCD as a final step. With the tube feed the extra crimp just seems like good, inexpensive insurance. I don't try to "speed load" anyway, so one extra turn and pull on the Lee four hole turret is no big deal. I don't have nearly experience that many of these guys have, but a little extra safety step with very little extra time and expense seems like a good investment to me. The 45-70 does thump--that's why we love 'em--so a good crimp, however that is achieved, is important.
 
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When you seat and crimp in the same operation, the bullet moves about 1/16" after the mouth of the case starts to grip the bullet. It helps if there is a cannelure in the bullet, because the crimp slips into the groove as the bullet is pressed home. Still, more force is required than if the steps are separated. If there are variations in the case length, this force can be enough to buckle the walls of the case. Even with the best care setting up, I end up ruining two or three cases like that per hundred. If I seat and crimp in separate steps, I rarely ruin a case, and typically run 400 to 500 in a batch.

It's better to pay $15 or $20 for another die than to lose all that time and precision changing the setup. Die sets for progressive presses almost always have separate dies.

A Lee factory crimp die is one way to go. In some versions. a sleeve with a collet is pushed up at the same time as the cartridge, so there is never any vertical force applied to the case. I use a Redding Profile Crimp die for .45-70. The crimp is perfectly formed without any tendency to bulge the case at the crimp.
 

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i usually seat and crimp in two steps, and i never seat in one stroke i use three or four short strokes rotating the case in the shell holder at the same time. i cant say if its better or worse, just the way i have always done it. one thing for sure, when using oversized cast bullets in FL sized cases the bulge is never on just one side
 

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i usually seat and crimp in two steps, and i never seat in one stroke i use three or four short strokes rotating the case in the shell holder at the same time. i cant say if its better or worse, just the way i have always done it. one thing for sure, when using oversized cast bullets in FL sized cases the bulge is never on just one side
This describes my method exactly. When loading oversized Hardcasts, I try to keep the bulge uniform throughout the circumference of the case.

When loading bottleneck rounds, I feel like it helps minimize runout.
 

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Interesting Neumann, I have yet to ever see a bullet be seated a 1/16" deeper if crimping and bullet seating in one step. Never.

Also don't have bulged cases which need to be rotated so that the "bulge" is the same on all sides of the case.

Sorry, but it all comes down to proper adjustment of the dies.

Of course, being an Ol'Coot I could be wrong as have only been doing handloading since the late 60s.

Crusty Deary Ol'Coot
 
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