My lemon of a die into LEMONADE!
Well, if anyone was following the progress on that resize die that I botched up, I have a slight bit of redemption.
After sulking for a considerable time, thinking my ability as a machinist was entirely captured in my epic failure during my second attempt at a reloading die, I started to contemplate what I would do next. After discussion in the shoutbox had turned to making hydraulic forming dies, I thought that my botched resize die might make the perfect starting platform for this purpose. Regaining a desire to create, I decided I would go for it. I chucked the POS back into the 4-jaw, and indicated the stem end. I then bored it out enough to clean the threads, and drove the hole in deeper. I then measured to the neck and drilled a small hole into the side of the die right at the brass shoulder (this should relieve any air out of the die during the forming). I then turned down a anvil. The stem of the anvil fits tightly in the freshly bored stem end of the die. Finally, I needed to create a plug of sorts to put in the shell holder, so it would keep the primer in the pocket, allowing the hydraulic pressure to focus on the shoulder instead of decapping the die. Pictures below show what I have attempted to describe here:
Freshly Bored Stem End:
Air port to evacuate air while forming, is right at the top of the shoulder neck junction:
Anvil or blunt force activated ram:
Hand fashioned shell holder plug:
Die with ram in place:
Blunt force applicator (leather sling covered to prevent marring):
So, how does it work? Well, the first application I thought I was just bad at this whole thing. But after figuring I needed to fill the case with water first, and then top it off after inserting it into the die, things went well. I run the brass through a .284 expander without decapping pin. This allows the brass to seal inside the die. I then fill the case with water, and lock the ram on the press down. I top off the stem side of the die with a squirt of water, then insert the ram and hammer the hell out of it. Here is what comes out:
Case on the left is 1x fired, un-touched. middle has been expanded, then neck sized to appropriate lenght with a small false shoulder. right has been run as described above through my hydro-forming die:
After forming, I disassembled the die and parts, and dry them the best I can. I then throw them into the toaster oven at 200° for 1/2 hour. I then take them out immediately with a leather glove and apply WD40 (figure this will keep them from accumulating any moisture during cooling), then set them aside to cool. Quick wipe down, and put everything away for next time.
Hope you enjoy
Once I get my resize die rebuilt, I will run these formed cases through it before loading to get the neck and OAL length of the brass right.
I will update again when I get the die built, need to wait for some bushings and a die blank.
DD, What is the parent case, and what is the mods to it in your design? Obviously you're pushing the shoulder forward, an d going up in caliber. I'm curious.
You can PM if you like.
No PM necessary. The parent case is the 6.5 Grendel. My design blows the shoulder out to 40° and forward .075". I am hoping to push the 123 scenar at close to 2800 fps, this is the hope. I won't know for sure until I get a resize die and can shoot some rounds through it. Should be a nice fit in the AR-15 Platform.
I'd skip the WD40, I think you're asking for primer contamination problems down the road. I clean cases in an ultrasonic and just rinse in hot water, blow out the excess, and bake at 180 for fifteen minutes. Never had any issues of moisture in the case, expecially if you let them sit mouth up for a little while.
Sorry, the WD40 is for the die and parts. That way there is no rusting. The brass I am not worried about, thought I do give them a shot in the oven after using water in them. I want to get an ultrasonic down the line too, seems like a real nice way to clean them up.
Thanks for the advice
WD40 is the gunsmiths best friend, as it sets and the solvent evaporates out it leaves a brown gummy residue. If you are wiping it out and rinsing with water frequently, you may get by with it. Let it set for an extended period of time and you will see what I mean. I myself would use something else.
DD, Sounds like a great wildcat. I did one similar on the BR case. I used to shoot the 30BR quite a bit and always felt it was just a tad light, and people tried every trick in the book to stuff more powder in. So a friend and myself bought the reamers to blow the chamber forward .075", but we kept the stock 30 degree shoulder. It works great, much improved over the standard.
Originally Posted by DebosDave
Since the Grendel is a PPC on steroids, you getting a tad more room won't hurt a bit. I know nothing about AR's, but in a bolt gun, I think you could get your velocity. Look at what they get out of a stock 6BR and 107's!
Let me know how it works.