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Thread: Looky what I scored today

  1. #31
    I strongly recommend you seat and crimp in two different stations. It's very difficult to set the press up so that it seats and crimps in one operation. This is because the press stresses differently when you're working on one station (in set up) versus loading with a full shellplate. Plus, you have five stations on the press, so there's no need.

    I'm not a fan of the Lee FCD. As it fully sizes the case down to minimum SAAMI specs, it also sizes down the bullet where it's seated in the case. Undersized bullets lead to poor accuracy and leading. Try using your Lee seater/crimper in station 5 with the seating stem removed so that it only crimps. As long as your loaded rounds pass the plunk test, you're g-t-g.

    Good luck!

  2. #32
    So after surfing a few of 76Highboy's videos, I followed his advice on tuning the priming system and adding a lock-washer to the shell-plate. Both appear to be rockin' and rollin' now. I also wiped down the ram really well and then greased it up with white lithium. Overall the press is buttery smooth now.
    @john c - I think I did exactly what you're suggesting. I used the RCBS die to seat only on station four and then used the Lee FCD to crimp on station five. Unless I'm misunderstanding how the FCD works, I don't think it seats - it only crimps. I have it crimping on station five and the bullet I pulled isn't showing any signs of deformity or scraping along the sides. Have you experienced any of that with softer bullets and the FCD?

    Finally, I stripped apart the powder measure, cleaned it out a bit and installed the appropriate drop plug for pistol. I think the press is ready to go but I'll probably surf a few more videos before starting to load.

  3. #33
    Quote Originally Posted by ER_STL View Post
    - I think I did exactly what you're suggesting. I used the RCBS die to seat only on station four and then used the Lee FCD to crimp on station five. Unless I'm misunderstanding how the FCD works, I don't think it seats - it only crimps. I have it crimping on station five and the bullet I pulled isn't showing any signs of deformity or scraping along the sides. Have you experienced any of that with softer bullets and the FCD?
    Yes, I have had issues with the Lee FCD when using lead or plated bullets (less so with jacketed). The real test is to measure a bullet at the base and where the crimp will be and then seat it. Pull the bullet, and re-measure. If either of these spots is less than the groove diameter of your barrel, you may have trouble.

    For 9mm, I'm using RMR FMJ bullets. They're just a few dollars more per 1000 compared to plated or lead bullets, and they're much easier to load and shoot. There's no deformation of the bullet during loading, because the jackets and cores are quite hard. For .45, I load plated and lead. I set my press to load at the SAAMI maximum, rather than minimum. I want the least amount of deformation of the bullet as possible. I use a Lyman M die for pistols to make sure that the case is expanded correctly.

  4. #34
    I've got the same set up for the most part. RCBS pro series dies + Lockout die. (a must in my book). Lee FCD. have used it for lead, plated and FMJ with no problems. After about every 1000 rounds I break down the primer station and clean with Hornady Clean and Lube, and do the same to the dies. Almost never have a hiccup.

  5. #35
    So I received the necessary replacement parts from the fine folks at RCBS for the decap and resize die and I went ahead and swapped out the Lee die for the RCBS one. I also dialed in the powder hopper for my current load and after a variety of trial loads and random measurements have verified that it seems to be consistent. The press is ready and I’ve loaded about 30 rounds through it to learn my way around it and its idiosyncrasies.

    Random thoughts…

    • In hindsight I should have stripped this press down to all of its individual parts and then reassembled it from scratch. I made lots of assumptions that, since various parts such as the primer slide and powder rotor were already installed, that the press was set up as I needed it to be. As you’d expect, it wasn’t and I ended up learning in a backwards way how everything worked.

    • I’ve quickly realized that a progressive press has a lot more going on at once than a turret. It’s not a big deal as I understand what each station is doing but I’m so used to running a turret that it’s going to take some time for me to develop the necessary muscle mental memory for the LnL. It’s looking like it’s going to be a process of load brass in station one with left hand, raise handle with right hand, verify powder and seat bullet with left hand at station three/four, complete the upward pull of the handle, down press and seat primer, rinse and repeat.

    • From thought number two above, the powder cop die seems unnecessary for pistol loads. As I can see down into case prior to dropping a bullet – and I’m used to visually verifying the charge anyway – I may end up just selling off the unneeded die. Since I need to seat and crimp separately anyway I’d have to move to a powder-through-expander model in order to accommodate the extra station for it. I suppose I could just keep it around in the event that I end up loading for calibers with much taller brass but we’ll see…

    • I ended up running a few screws into my bench to hold the box catcher rather than mounting it to the bracket box cartridge (which in turn mounts to the press). The bracket seems designed for the press to be mounted onto a dedicated press mount rather than directly to a bench. So far so good.

      In my opinion the LnL should have a third mounting point at the base rather than relying on just two. The LCT had three and it seemed to be more securely locked into my bench.

    • 76Highboy’s YT channel has been very helpful so far. I bought an o-ring kit based on his recommendation and it has already come in handy. The RCBS dies don’t use them and a few of the set screws wanted to back out. Adding o-rings solved that problem.

    • Overall I like the LnL quite a bit so far.
    Last edited by ER_STL; 07-05-2017 at 09:47 AM.

  6. #36
    So as I persist in learning my way around the press I continue to hit little snags along the way. Most Iíd attribute to my learning curve but this morning I had a part break. Apparently the primer seater punch stuck in the extended position Ė as it is when you seat a primer Ė and when I lowered the handle to cycle through to the next round, it prevented the primer slide from moving, which in turn snapped the LnL AP bracket (which holds the rod in place that guides the primer slide). Fortunately Hornady provides a spare LnL AP bracket with the kit so Iím still up and running.

    Additional random notes:
    • While I like the press I donít yet have that full satisfaction that I had with the LCT, probably because Iím not that familiar with it yet.

    • Iím currently loading at a very slow pace to ensure I donít honk anything up while building up the muscle/mind memory for the LnL.

    • Thereís a lot more going on at once with a progressive (duh) and thus it seems like thereís more potential for something to go wrong with each pull of the handle.

    • About every 5-10 rounds a primer seats very hard. As in, I have to crank the handle to seat it and I somewhat expect it to ignite. Iíve verified that I have the small primer slide and primer seat on the press so Iím not sure yet why itís happening. This would occasionally happen on the LCT but only with certain brands of brass (S&B for example).

  7. #37
    Quote Originally Posted by ER_STL View Post
    While I like the press I donít yet have that full satisfaction that I had with the LCT, probably because Iím not that familiar with it yet.
    I tried the Loadmaster and I think part of the problem was the decades I spent with the 550.

  8. #38
    So quick question to those with more experience on a progressive press: do you encounter spilled powder? I'm finding that when a charged case rotates along the shell-plate before I seat a bullet that powder (the case is about 50-60% full) likes to bounce up on out of the case. I can try seating the bullet on the case right after it is charged and prior to plate rotation but I'm not flaring enough to prevent the bullet from tipping over.

    Any thoughts or advice?
    Last edited by ER_STL; 07-13-2017 at 09:51 AM.

  9. #39
    Member SecondsCount's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ER_STL View Post
    So quick question to those with more experience on a progressive press: do you encounter spilled powder? I'm finding that when a charged case rotates along the shell-plate before I seat a bullet that powder (the case is about 50-60% full) likes to bounce up on out of the case. I can try seating the bullet on the case right after it is charged and prior to plate rotation but I'm not flaring enough to prevent the bullet from tipping over.

    Any thoughts or advice?
    Yes, the snap of the shellplate on my Dillon 650 will do it with the short 9mm cases and WSF powder.

    What I do is place a finger at the seating station and as the case comes around it bumps that finger, dampening the snap. That is the same hand that I use to set the bullet in the case so it also serves as a reference point killing two birds with one stone.

    Not sure on the LNL but someone makes a bearing kit for the Dillon to smooth out the rotation of the shellplate and reduce the issue.
    -Seconds Count. Misses Don't-

  10. #40
    Thanks SecondsCount for the suggestion. I did a little Google-fu and it looks like others with the same problem have either done what you do or have modified the press in some way (push the shellplate "balls" back up a bit for example).

    I figured out what was wrong with the Safety Prime on my LCT and was able to fix it. Just for kicks I remounted it and loaded 100 rounds through it. I can't say why, but I like the LCT better. I know that's weird given that the LnL is a higher-end and nicer press but there's something about the LCT that I just enjoy. Maybe it's just the fact that I have a significant amount of time behind it but I just feel more at home when I'm running it. I've started to develop the memory pattern for the LnL but it still doesn't yet bring that same smile to my face.

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