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Reloading .223 for AR's
Discussion regarding the reloading of ammunition and tuning of loads for accuracy
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hunterjoe21
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 9:41 pm    Post subject: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

I've been advised to use small base dies and full length dies, sometimes in the same conversation.

What works for you?

Also, Do you crimp, and if so, what method do you use?

I was thinkin' about gettin a Lee Factory Crimp Die, but was advised that crimping was unneccesary.

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Pumpkinslinger
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 10:30 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

So far regular full length sizing has worked for me (except when I screwed up!). I have some small base dies but haven't used them yet. I didn't crimp (intentionally) either.

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Dawgdad
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 12, 2010 8:54 am    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

I use a small base RCBS X-die to load a couple of thousand .223's for AR every year. I also use a Wilson Chamber check tool to make sure I have not screwed up the shoulder set back. I have never had a failure to feed with this set up. No crimp other than what the sizer die bushing puts on it.

BUT - my shooting buddy was loading for a new varmint upper recently. He used a standard die that was producing brass that chambered in his other AR's but whe we went to sight in the new upper, the bolt had to be slammed forward to chamber a round and then he almost did not get it back out... I gave him some of mine and they slid right in. The chamber on his new gun was closer to minimum and his other guns were closer to maximum dimensions.

Point of the story - you can "neck size" for an auto loader if it is the only one you have in that caliber and you only use brass that was fired from that gun to reload.

I use the small base and set back the shoulder to the minimum spec so that my ammo will load in any chamber. Shooting in competition or hunting situations, I do not want to worry about a failure to feed. Any miniscule improvement you get in group size is outweighed by the possibility of a malfunction.

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shrpshtrjoe
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 12, 2010 3:33 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

I have bin using standard full length Sizing dies and have had no issues with my colt and they have worked fine in my Buddys Bushmaster as well. Oh and I don't crimp them either.

Joe

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Last edited by shrpshtrjoe on Tue Jan 12, 2010 5:27 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Gil Martin
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 12, 2010 5:23 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

I use regular reloading dies and do not crimp the cases. All the best...
Gil

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chambered221
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 12, 2010 6:04 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

It appears to me that the typical 5.56 chambers feed fine with standard FL dies, it’s the varmint barrels, 223 chambers, and match chambers that seem to need the small base dies.

Out of the guys I know loading for AR's only one crimps his !!! He’s using Winchester bulk FMJ’s with the crimp groove. He claims he has too because of the groove.
wtf No sense trying to convince him otherwise......he’s an expert !!!

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slimjim
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 12, 2010 9:19 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

I've never crimped or seen a need to crimp any of my reloads, .223 or other caliber. Only reload for single shots, bolt, and semi-auto, however.

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Vince
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 13, 2010 6:47 am    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

chambered221 wrote:

wtf No sense trying to convince him otherwise......he’s an expert !!!

Ah, the dreaded expert...X is an unknown factor, and a spurt is a drip under pressure!!!

Cheers, Vince

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slimjim
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 13, 2010 7:12 am    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

Vince wrote:
Ah, the dreaded expert...X is an unknown factor, and a spurt is a drip under pressure!!!

Ah, one more indication of the parrallels in our two cultures. My Dad introduced me to this saying when I was a kid. Love your cars btw! My GTO (Monaro) is the greatest!!
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chambered221
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 13, 2010 6:21 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

Vince !!! Your back !!! Party


Let's have a beer buddy !!! ( wtf you did stock your cooler didn't ya ???)

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aznative
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 18, 2010 7:18 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

hunterjoe, I shoot semi's 90 percent of the time. In 223 and 308 I own several semis and intermix ammo. I use just standard dies. Usually Hornandy and Dillon. I called Hornandy about small base and they told me their dies are cut to .001 of min sammi specs. Dillon dies are cut to min specs because many of there customers shoot full autos. I check my die adjustment with the RCBS Precision Mic:
www.midwayusa.com/view...ber=477756
I do not crimp either.
If you have regular dies, I would surely try them first and wouldn't look back if they did. If they don't work, buy a small base size die.
Hope this helps.

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hunterjoe21
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 19, 2010 5:05 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

Thanks guys!

I picked up a set of RCBS FL dies this afternoon.

Now I gotta try to find some primers...

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slimjim
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 19, 2010 5:09 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

hunterjoe21 wrote:
gotta try to find some primers...

Cabela's had plenty of small rifle primers in CCI and Remington, both in regular and bench rest.
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hunterjoe21
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 25, 2010 6:10 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

Thanks again for the responses!

Next issue...

I have about 400 pieces of Lake City once fired brass (XM193c). I picked up the RCBS Primer Pocket Swager Combo. The instructions are kinda vague on a successful swaging job. Can ya overdo it? Should I just crank 'em down tight (without bending the swager rod) and "call it good"? How do ya know when it's right?

Thanks in advance for any help!!

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Dawgdad
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2010 7:09 am    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

It is harder to do with that tool but you can over do swaging and make a loose pocket for the primer. When yoy have it set right, the new primer seats like new factory uncrimped brass with just a little resisitance and a satisfying "bump" as it ends up a few .001's below the case head.

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