148 HBWC and expander dies

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148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by inthebeech on 10/17/2016, 5:42 am

My expander ball is shorter than the length of the typical 148 grain HBWC.  I can feel the hollow base hitting the smaller "unexpanded" inside diameter as I seat them home.  Is this hurting my accuracy?  I am loading these at about 740 f/s and I usually buy soft bullets so the pressure may still be swaging them out to properly fill the cylinder throats and then also the barrel groove diameter.  I don't have a 'serious' leading problem which means a very slight amount shows up at 40-50 rounds, and my cylinder throats are .001 inch over barrel groove.  I'm sizing them equal to cylinder throats or half a mil under.  While my skill level is not sufficient to determine how accurate the revolver is, I do believe that I will be able to detect improvements in leading and accuracy.  This is more of a question about following established practices regardless whether I personally can detect their benefits.
I'm just curious of I could do better than the above in terms of less leading and maybe also better accuracy.  If so, is there a particular brand of die famous for extra long expander balls.  I realize that I can simply seat the bullets out enough to stay within the expanded portion of the case and I have done this but accuracy and velocity spread suffer.
Thanks,
Ed
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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by Jack H on 10/17/2016, 6:17 am

RCBS offers a longer stud expander just for HBWC.  Call them
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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by desben on 10/17/2016, 7:13 am

Maybe that's why some load their wadcutters without resizing the cases first... http://www.bullseyeforum.net/t5732-not-resizing

Note that there was a spread of opinions on the subject. But it's a cheap experiment and you could try for yourself. An unsized fired case should seat the hbwc easier.
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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by inthebeech on 10/18/2016, 5:41 am

I forgot to mention that I have tried using fired cases.  I think because my cylinder throats and barrel groove are matched up best with .358's that the bullets are loose in unsized cases.  That would have been the cat's pajamas if it had worked out.  I suppose I could go to .359's or the Remingtons which are .360. and see what happens.  Thanks for the tip.
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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by rich.tullo on 10/18/2016, 7:06 am

I use Lee dies no problem and they have a good crimp die.
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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by jglenn21 on 10/18/2016, 8:55 am

Try the Lyman M die. 


It has a expanded straight section before the bell.

Really helps starting the bullet straight down the case. Have a friend who is having a lengthened version of the M die made just for HBWCs.
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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by james r chapman on 10/18/2016, 1:32 pm

I can't use fired cases, won't hold the bullet from going back in the case on recoil, unless I were to seat it out and use the crimp groove.

you just need a slight bell on the case to allow the hbwc to slide in.
Remingtons will require a larger expander.

measure a factory shell and see what they do.
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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by Jwhelan939 on 10/18/2016, 6:22 pm

I second the m die!

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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by jglenn21 on 10/18/2016, 6:26 pm

If you run a Dillon there are a couple of people making M type powder dies for the Dillons too.
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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by 454Gene on 10/18/2016, 7:16 pm

I reload on a Dillon 550 and would be interested in a powder die for the 148's. Who offers them?

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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by jglenn21 on 10/18/2016, 7:31 pm

Uniquetek carries them


http://uniquetek.com/

Also this fellow has them on eBay

http://www.ebay.com/itm/45-ACP-M-style-powder-funnel-powder-die-for-Dillon-RL550-XL-650-RL-1050-/222114543747?hash=item33b70ef883:g:M4oAAOSwZJlXMrEF
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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by robert84010 on 10/23/2016, 1:44 pm

jglenn21 wrote:Uniquetek carries them


http://uniquetek.com/

Also this fellow has them on eBay

http://www.ebay.com/itm/45-ACP-M-style-powder-funnel-powder-die-for-Dillon-RL550-XL-650-RL-1050-/222114543747?hash=item33b70ef883:g:M4oAAOSwZJlXMrEF
I"m sure it's just me being blind, which doesn't help my shooting, but can you post the page on the uniquetek site that shows a 38 special M die for a Dillon press? 

Plus the guy on ebay doesn't list anything for a 38 special.

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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by jglenn21 on 10/23/2016, 2:08 pm

they just redid their site..


tougher to find

http://uniquetek.com/product/T1582
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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by SmokinNJokin on 11/1/2016, 10:49 pm

jglenn21 wrote:they just redid their site..


tougher to find

http://uniquetek.com/product/T1582

They only list 9mm/38.. doesn't 38 special, when I see that I assume .38 super. Is that the one you are using? Usually the 9mm (.355) expander's don't open up nearly large enough for .358 lead. I don't want to buy the wrong one...

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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by jglenn21 on 11/2/2016, 7:32 am

The Mr bulletfeeder style has two steps before the belling portion of the die. They measure .355 & .358 so it would be marginal for the spl. I suggest you message the fellow on eBay and see what his measures. His steps do appear to be longer which would be an advantage with the spl.
that said I do use the die with my spl loads. I use almost all Rem cases.
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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by noylj on 11/3/2016, 1:31 pm

Unsized cases work GREAT—in autos.
All revolvers I have tried are too tight to chamber.

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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by scheibenpistole on 11/6/2016, 1:34 am

I've found it to be a "numbers game" in balancing the dimensions of all the parts in the equation: Chamber dimensions, expander dimensions, sizing die dimensions, brass thickness, plus whatever your chosen firearm adds to the mix.  It can be a pain!
Most sizing dies are marketed for the jacketed bullet/357 magnum crowd, I would venture to guess.  You've probably all seen that nasty "girdle" look that you can get with a loaded round.  Having said that, I've found the Redding resizing dies to be just a little gentler on brass.  My RCBS die is pretty tight.  With the Redding dies, using a Dillon expander/powder die, I can push a .358" HBWC pretty far in with really firm thumb pressure.  
Here's a useful experiment: load a dummy round using a HBWC in a sized and expanded case.  Remove the slug with an inertia type bullet puller and see if it's still .358".  I've found that in some cases the slug will taper in diameter towards the base, perhaps as much as .002".  (BTW, do you have a 

By the way, there was a great series of articles by Al Miller on match grade wadcutter loads published in a few issues of Handloader back in the 70s.  I'll have to dig around and see if I can find them....
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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by Virgil Kane on 11/6/2016, 7:48 am

In regards to what Scheibenpistile has said.

I have the following dies for the 38 Special, Redding (carbide), RCBS ( two sets one carbide and one non-carbide )and Hornady (carbide).

Out of them all my old RCBS NON-carbide dies from the 70's size down the least.   Problem is that anybody running a progressive press doesn't want to deal with lubing cases to run them into a non-carbide die.   But I can state for a fact that I get much better accuracy from all my 38's when I use this old RCBS sizing die.   All the other sizing dies I have size the brass to slightly different dimensions so IMO it pays to experiment. I also have the Lyman "M" expander die and the Hornady "Cowboy" expander die, both appear to do the same job and are redundant but both could be a touch wider than what they are.


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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by scheibenpistole on 11/7/2016, 1:58 am

I was going to mention something similar to what Virgil said

I too have had similar results using non-carbide sizing dies and also using the old Lee Loaders.  That's what I started with many, many years ago, and as slow as they are, the results were good enough that I have kept them.

Redding says that they have objectively documented better accuracy with non-carbide dies.  For this reason, they started to make Dual Ring Carbide sizing dies, to better replicate the slight taper inherent to so many "straight walled" cases.  

Going back to expander dies, it's not a big deal to get an over-size expander plug and turn it down in a lathe, or have someone do it for you. It would also be a good way to get an expander that works further down into the case for use with HBWCs.

I found with a Lyman M die that I bought back in the 1980s, the finish on the plug was rough enough to be a concern.  I didn't like scratching the case mouth knowing I was using cast bullets.  Plus, with rifle, I know that a rough expander plug can contribute to case stretching.  So, I chucked the plugs in a lathe and gave them a gentle polishing.
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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by robert84010 on 11/10/2016, 9:51 am

SmokinNJokin wrote:
jglenn21 wrote:they just redid their site..


tougher to find

http://uniquetek.com/product/T1582

They only list 9mm/38.. doesn't 38 special, when I see that I assume .38 super. Is that the one you are using? Usually the 9mm (.355) expander's don't open up nearly large enough for .358 lead. I don't want to buy the wrong one...
I bought the 45 die and emailed him about doing a 38 special die. Maybe if more contact him he will see that the effort to make a 38 die is worth his time.

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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by robert84010 on 11/28/2016, 8:00 pm

The guys that makes the M dies for Dillon's just contacted me and states he will make a 38 special model but he needs to know dimensions. Length of bullet, diameter of bullet.  I cannot seem to get .360 bullets anyways so I am probably just going to get one for .358 bullets. Do you guys think having an expander die made in .360 would work for .358 bullets or would that be too loose, even after applying a crimp?

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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by Sa-tevp on 11/28/2016, 8:11 pm

A friend with a lathe made a .357" diameter M profile expander with a .620" length for me for HBWCs. I can seat my HBWC almost all the way in by hand before seating in fired brass sized with a Lee 38 Super carbide sizing die. After crimping my case OD is .377" with Winchester brass and I have not been able to push back the swaged Magnus HBWC bullets I use with a dowel and hand pressure.
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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by robert84010 on 11/29/2016, 5:35 pm

thanks for the measurements. I measured a Remington 148 HBWC and was surprised to see it measure .360" since the box states .358". The Zero 148 HBWC was longer at .620 compared to the Remington at .605. So I will see what he makes up. The 45 expanding die he makes seems to work well. I had to add Dillon spray lube to ease the cycling since it grabs the inside of the case more than before.

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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by Sa-tevp on 11/29/2016, 5:46 pm

I have to load a tray of brass standing up and spray Hornady One Shot case lube then turn the tray around and spray again at about a 75 degree angle to keep my wet tumbled brass from sticking to my expanders. The long HBWC really needs the lube to cycle well on a press.
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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

Post by SmokinNJokin on 1/1/2017, 6:15 pm

robert84010 wrote:The guys that makes the M dies for Dillon's just contacted me and states he will make a 38 special model but he needs to know dimensions. Length of bullet, diameter of bullet.  I cannot seem to get .360 bullets anyways so I am probably just going to get one for .358 bullets. Do you guys think having an expander die made in .360 would work for .358 bullets or would that be too loose, even after applying a crimp?

Robert,
Did you have any luck with the ebay guy getting your dillon expander die? I am dealing with the same issue loading 148 hbwc's and looking for a better expander.
Andrew

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Re: 148 HBWC and expander dies

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