Broken case in resizing die

Discussion in 'The Ammo Can' started by ETexPops, Dec 22, 2009.

  1. Dec 22, 2009 #1
    ETexPops

    ETexPops XDTalk 1K Member Founding Member

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    OK-I finally did it. I broke a case in the resizing die (.223). I didn't just get one stuck; broke the sucker half in two. Any good ideas on how to drive out the broken half or just send it to Lee, let them get it out and order another full length resizing die? Oh yeah-the case was lubed and this happened about 100 rds into my resizing venture. Headstamp was Lake City but had already run others throught he operation with no problem.

     
  2. Dec 22, 2009 #2
    Jarhead1987

    Jarhead1987 XDTalk 1K Member

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    Check with customer service and send it back or take it to the local gunsmith. He may have a way to get it out.
     
  3. Dec 22, 2009 #3
    ETexPops

    ETexPops XDTalk 1K Member Founding Member

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    Know I can send it back to Lee and they advertise they will get it out for $4 but would like to know how to do it myself since I kinda think it WILL happen again. Buddy of mine who saw this thread just called and suggested putting the die in the freezer and then trying to use a punch to get it out. Might work. Any other ideas would be appreciated. Always have the local gunsmith to rely on; I hope 'cause they are kinda contrary.
     
  4. Dec 22, 2009 #4
    agalindo

    agalindo XDTalk 15K Member Founding Member

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    Try this link. You problem was insufficient lube. If you carefully there's a link posted can't change the default gray on gray link color. :(

    Do-it-yourself gun repair ... - Google Books

     
  5. Dec 22, 2009 #5
    mongoose33

    mongoose33 XDTalk 2K Member Founding Member

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    It sounded to me like the head came off.

    But if not, here's a great way to do this, analogous to what Agalindo posted. Someone sent me an instruction sheet on this last year, can't remember who, and can't find the sheet. So here's my own version of it:

    What you need to buy:

    1/2" socket (1/4" drive)
    1/4" x 1" machine bolt
    1/4" tap
    13/64" drill bit (came with tap)
    1/4" x 1 1/2" Washer (or thereabouts)

    [​IMG]

    Step one is to back out the decapping mandrel so you don't drill it. You don't have to remove it--just withdraw it enough that you can drill the hole through the case head.

    Place the die in a vise or something to hold it steady. Then drill out the primer pocket w/ the 13/64" drill, and tap the hole:

    [​IMG]

    Push the bolt through the washer and socket, like so, and thread it into the newly tapped hole:

    [​IMG]

    Use a wrench to tighten the bolt, and it will draw the case out of the die, like so:

    [​IMG]

    I had to cut off the end of the shell so as to be able to remove the expander ball, but you could also cut off the head of the shell.

    It works--I've pulled several stuck cases with it.
     
  6. Dec 23, 2009 #6
    ETexPops

    ETexPops XDTalk 1K Member Founding Member

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    Thanks guys; but, Mongoose got it right. The shell broke 1/2 in two. On the down stroke the head and about 3/8" of the case came out. I am going to get a tap today in case I get a stuck case that I can use the tap and pull method on. Meanwhile I left the die in the freezer overnight, tried it this morning, and it still won't budge. I'll try the gun shop today and hope they can get it out. If all else fails next week a friend who is a tool maker will be back from vacation and should be able to take a look at it. Sure wish I could figure this one out but I have run out of ideas. Thanks again for the replies.
     
  7. Dec 23, 2009 #7
    ETexPops

    ETexPops XDTalk 1K Member Founding Member

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    Guess this story ends here. Went to see the local gun smith and he explained what he would have to do to remove the remainder of the case from the die. It would cost me a lot more than a new die body (which I already ordered). Claimed he would have to stop up one end, try to rough up the inside of the case, fill it with "something" (can't remember what he said it was), and try to drive it out when the "something" solidified.

    Last effort will be to drive a tap into the case and see if it can be pulled or driven out. If I find a way; I'll post here so all will know there is a way. Thanks for all the responses. Merry Christmas to all.
     
  8. Dec 23, 2009 #8
    Mike in VA

    Mike in VA XDTalk 100 Member

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    You've got a head separation on the case that came apart in the sizer die. This indicates that you have a headspace problem. It's likely that you have more cases like this. These cases should NOT be used again.

    You can check for insipient head separation in your brass by making a feeler gauge out of a piece of steel wire, like from a large paper clip. Straighten the wire, then bend a small hook about 1/8" on one end. Sharpen the end of the hook to a chisel point. Then run the sharpened point down the inside of the suspect cases along the case wall. You can feel the thinned area in the case wall.

    I keep a sectioned case on my reloading bench that has a partial head separation, as a test case and a reminder.
     
  9. Dec 23, 2009 #9
    twice barrel

    twice barrel XDTalk 100 Member

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    I believe I would have sent the die and and a check for $4 back to Lee and been done with it. Might try and find another die in the meantime as well if I was in a hurry to get back in operation otherwise just work on a different cartridge for a while.

    Went your route with an RCBS dies years ago that I finally relented and had Mr. Huntingon's team fix. Would have saved a little money and a lot of frustration if I'd have just done that at the get-go.

    Regards,

    TB
     
  10. Dec 27, 2009 #10
    highscore

    highscore XDTalk 100 Member Founding Member

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    Were you able to remove the stem with the expander and decap pin from the die? If so, putting the die in a lathe and using a boring bar, bore the shell until it is thin enough to split it and take it out. Would take only a few minutes
     

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