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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok sorry if it seems like i'm spamming the forum. But I cant find much info on how to go about it except for a video on youtube. I am curious as to what I will need to do it will i only need the die set. Midway USA said that the Lee set will only fit thier Classic cast press. Will they fit in my rockchucker it has the plug that the normal die fits in.
Gotta go catch my supper
Levi
 

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You will have to remove the plug in your Rockchucker to get the dies to fit. I had to do this with my Rockchucker to use my Lee dies. As for reforming the 24 ga shells I have no clue. I am sure someone will come along who can help you. A lot of helpful people around here.
 

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I called Midway on that statement about the dies can only be used in the Lee press. They said they were well aware that the lee dies will fit other presses but their agreement with Lee requires the statement as the Lee warranty is invalidated if used in other than Lee presses..

RichardWV is the resident brass forming wizard, he'll be along shortly.
 

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577/450 out of 24 gag brass without a form die
making 577/450 out of 24 gag brass without a form die ( it can be done )

you need to anneal the brass just part way I like to use a deep well socket



then drop in water

I like to this spay case lube ( I have used it for swaging jacketed bullets )




back the die up until it still lock in but high enough so just grabs the case

then tease it in and out till it looks like this



teasing the case in and of the die ,turn the die down 1/2 a turn at a time until you get to the you get to the anneal spot on the case



trim case & then re anneal




re lube case and repeat teasing the case in and of the die ,turn the die down 1/2 a turn at a time until you bottom the die out



I would prefer to use a form die or a trim die
but if you get in a hurry to make some , hope this helps
I have since got a trim and form die from http://www.ch4d.com/

I have also have on order a F/S Case holder for Annealing Snider and Martini cases
http://britishmilitariaforums.yuku.com/topic/9735
and these cases were made with LEE dies
NORM
 

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Using 24 gauge MagTech (CBC) brass shotshells to make .450 MH cases requires an Intermediate die ( 577/500) in order to prevent case "folding" if one tries to make it to .450 in one go.

I made my own "Press in, Press out" .500 die to use in a 5-ton Screw press, followed by normal RCBS .450 dies in an RCBS Rockchucker. I find that CBC shell cases are already soft, and further annealing will only make the case collapse more likely. The custom .500 die has a very tapered shoulder, so the final .450 die gives the final correct shoulder angle. Brass forms best with several steps and easy slopes between diameters rather than one big step and sharp angles. (experience from 35 years of commercially producing Obsolete Wildcat and Obsolete Military cases)

Any trimming to length ( 60mm) I do using a Lathe; gives a neat, clean cut. My Three-jaw chucks have special rim clearance grooves which locate the case for repeatablility of OAL setting. ( I use this system for many Rimmed case conversions...Rimless cases use a Top-hat shaped Collect with a closed base to locate the case (such as a reformed .30/06 to xyz calibre).)

Regards,
Doc AV
AV Ballistics.
 

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FWIW,
I converted mine with the standard Lee die set - a bit tricky, but feasible. I used the seater as preliminary former, and went carefully, in multiple steps, with just enough lube (critical!). I lost 4 cases out of 50, I believe. OTOH, some are not so lucky and ruin more cases...
 

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The above is all good info, but I'd quickly add that using a sizing/forming wax is far superior to any liquid case lube I've used....which is a lot of them. While using an intermediate die makes life easier, it can be done with just the Lee die.....but a lot of patience and a few lost cases will be required. Go slow and don't get the case stuck, which is very hard to break loose once it is stuck in a relatively rough Lee dies.
 

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as to lube I tried both imperial and RCBS case lube II - I preferred the RCBS lube by far. Call me a heretic, but it did work better for me...
Okay! Heretic! you said!
 

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I used the Lee dies to form my brass. It took a few failures before I got it right but after that I had 100% success. I used Imperial Forming Wax and I would recomend it, but don't use too much, I had some falures due to the case wringleing because I had too much wax on them, just a nice thin coat will do. Once I got the amount of wax right I could actually do the entire reform on a cassing without having to respread the wax, but it was better if I did. It just takes a little care and time. Get a couple boxes of shotgun brass so you have some spares to learn on, get some forming wax, spread a thin coat on a round and then slowly push it up into the die. you will feel the case give as it sizes down, then you can pull it back out and spread the wax around, don't add more, and go at it again. Each time you will feel the case give as it is resized. Don't forget to anneal your brass shotgun shells first, they will not work unless you do, but will work good if you do. Another option is to just purchase Jamison brass, more expesive for sure, but much better brass. I have both and really love the Jamison brass, it's a treat to work with. Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Well last night i annealed 5 and set up the press. I ended up with 3 finished brass, 2 folded when I was nearly done I had been going half a turn on the die and went to a quarter when i noticed the folding and didn't have any more problems. I wonder if I didn't get them annealed as far down as i should have as they folded when i was all but done. Now I need all the rest of the goodies to get some loaded ammo. Thanks again guys! Boy this stuff is fun!

Levi
 

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If the fold isn't too bad you can probably still use the case, and it might fire form it back out. Sometimes if you get too much lube on the case then it gets pushed into a wad and that when it's under pressure acts hydraulically and bends or folds the brass in right at the point. I was having this problem and thought it was because I wasn't getting enough forming wax on the case so I would add more and more and the problem just got worse and worse. In the end I ruined half a box of shotgun shells and had some minor dents in most of the rest, then for some reason I cut back on the was, just put enough on to leave my finger prints in and I started getting perfectly formed brass. I managed to form an entire box of shotgun shells with only thee or four with minor dents. You need to find that happy medium, and yes you may need to anneal the brass down a little farther, try both and see what happens.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Well I decreased lube and finished the box off with zero folding only lost three out of the box. So I am very pleased about that. Now how do you fellas trim the cases, I tried to do the thing with the forstener bit and drill press however my drill press is in dire need of a replacement and kinda trims them crooked of the 3 i trimmed one is 2.34" the other is 2.32" and then 2.30" are the last 2 to short to use and should i destroy them? I don't want to mess anything up here.

Well thanks a bunch gents and talk to you later.
Levi
 

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You can trim them using a wide variety of cut off devices, starting with a dremil tool. However my favorite for trimming a wide variety of cases I form is one of the cheap import mini chop saws like sold through Harbor Freight, Northern Tool, etc.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
how important is the case length? will the cases that are 2 to 4 hundreths short be useless. how do make sure you get exactly 2.34 inches. I have formed the brass but have yet to trim it is that a mistake? well thanks again guys
Levi
 

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What I do is form the brass part way and then use the Lee .50 cal case trimmer (the kind you can chuck into a drill) and the Lee .577 case length gauge to trim the brass to length by just using a drill.
 

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You can use the short cases, they will work just fine. What is important is the overall length of the case, so if you are not crimping the cases when you seat the slug in then then there is nothing to worry about really. Lets say for just a minute that you have worked up a load that you are going to use, so much black powder, so much filler, so many card wads and so much lube wad, so with the short case you load it just exactly as you would the normal ones, you aren't going to crimp the case so you don't have to worry about the rim of the case mouth making contact with crimp shoulder in the seating die, you have the die all set up to seat the bullets to a certain depth but really you are seating them according to how full the case is and what you want for overall loaded round length, so the slugs in the short case combined with the charged case will give you the same over all length, but the slug will appear to stick out from the case mouth a little more than the other cases but in reality the case is short so the case mouth is lower on the slug. That is the only difference there will be, and this fact will save you having to trim those short cases as soon as the others, they will just eventually stretch to the correct size. The overall length of the case, not the loaded round, but just the case really doesn't matter that much, but the overall length of the loaded round does and you are not changing that measurement so long as you don't change the your seating die from the normal cases to the short cases, just leave everything set up from the original settings you come up with and load away.
 
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