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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My Lee Classic 4 die turret has made about 1400 rounds of 40SW since purchasing it from MidwayUSA in March of this year. That's all I currently reload.

Mostly I've been using Once Fired Brass (mixed) from OnceFiredBrass.com . It's been very clean and always in good condition. Recently I've purchased Starline brass just to try out. Nice, but expensive for me.

So here's the problem...(yeah Joe, get on with it)... After about a few hundred rounds, I've noticed the case gets snagged when removing it from the Powder Thru Expander (PTE) die. At first it felt like I may have made the flair too big and it may have been hitting the die on the way out. So I reduced the flair as much as possible yet still large enough to receive a bullet. Yet as I withdraw the case, it still catches on the die at the very last bit just before it clears the die.

It hasn't caused any damage to the case. Nothing that I can see. And all rounds fire just fine.

But in the last few hundred rounds, it has been hanging up SO tightly that it takes two hands to pull the handle up and get the shell out. Doing so shakes my reloading bench and everything on it. This should not be happening.

Today I called Lee Precision and spoke with a gentleman named Peter. He recommended I disassemble the PTE die (once again) and sand down the insert which may be collecting brass on it causing it to stick to the cases. He made a comment about Starline brass being a little smaller in diameter than other brands and that could also be the problem. But this has been happening with Winchester brass and other brands so it's not a problem isolated to just Starline brass.

Suffice it to say the problem still exists tonight and it was all I could do to make 50 more rounds before getting too frustrated to continue.

Just so you know, I've removed and reset all my dies, multiple times. I've cleaned them at least 3 times that I remember over the course of loading 1400 rounds. Nothing has been abused.

Has anyone here experienced this kind of problem and could offer advice on how to solve it? I'd really appreciate any constructive help you can offer.

Thanks for letting me vent!

Joe
 

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the expander gets crud on it very quickly... I break it down and clean my dies every thousand rounds or more often...

have you sprayed gun cleaner on the inside of the die and the insert? it may be that your flaring too little? try doing it the other way around and see if it works better...

if you have some hoppes 9 that also works well...
 

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I have about the same amount of rounds through my 9mm dies, not having the problem you mention, yet, but now know cleaning is something to consider. Keep us updated.
 

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I have the same press and the same thing happend with new Starline .45 brass once they are fired and reloaded again no problem did not hang up on second reload, I feel your pain it was a tough to get those new ones reloaded on the powdered drop stage but next reload should be better
 

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Joe, it's the brass, not the press. New brass has an edge on the case mouth. This snags or grabs the powder thru. Same thing happens on my DIllon. Chamfering the cases helps a lot, but tedious. Polishing the powder thru helps, but does not solve the issue, adding a dry lube helps too. It may be worth the time to chamber the little buggers after sizing to help with the new brass.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Hi Guys- thanks for the suggestions.

I've been reloading strictly "used brass" for the last 1300 rounds and the problem of the case hanging up in the "powder thru" die has been happening since the very beginning. It's been slowly getting worse as time went on. Recently I switched to brand new Starline brass to see if the problem would go away. The problem remained and seems worse now than ever. When I say it takes two hands to get the case out of the die, I'm not kidding. Everything on the bench falls over and the violent movement even shuts off my electronic scale! (Anyone want to buy a 'used' electronic scale? I don't like my MTM DS-750 anymore). Maybe I'll try to upload a video of the action for you to see.

I'll try champhering them and chambering them to see if that helps. Anything is worth trying so I can get back to making rounds. My ammo supply is lower than it needs to be.

Ugh.
 

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That doesnt sound right.

Call lee and have them send you a replacement powder flare die. I think you somehow got a lemon if this has been the case from the start.

Mine works fine.

The only other possibility is if your dies are out of alignment but that would bind all dies

And i know you already called them. When you call again just ask them to replace it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Oops, I meant to call Lee first thing today but got completely sidetracked at work and forgot. I'll call them Monday morning and see if they'll send me a free replacement.
 

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Joe, it's the brass, not the press. New brass has an edge on the case mouth. This snags or grabs the powder thru. Same thing happens on my DIllon. Chamfering the cases helps a lot, but tedious. Polishing the powder thru helps, but does not solve the issue, adding a dry lube helps too. It may be worth the time to chamber the little buggers after sizing to help with the new brass.
Sticky die's. I just had the same issue with some new Star-line brand Nickel plated brass... Brass was real sticky in all of my lee die's on my classic turret press. I just ran the new brass in my tumbler for a while with some Flitz polish and that was the end of the problem. I'm not sure if its the de-burring that takes place or the semi-wax job the Lyman corn cob media along with the Flitz puts on the new brass. Heck the new brass might be etched to be super clean with something acidic. I have no idea. Polishing the brass, even though new, solved my problems.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hi PJ,

Dave at Lee Precision told me similar, saying brand new brass will stick a bit so he suggested using a little graphite inside every 5th shell to keep the expander sleeve lubed. He also said used brass has some residue that helps to lube the sleeve. Dave is sending me a replacement sleeve to try out just in case it's the sleeve and not a lube issue.

I'll let you know how this turns out. Thanks for confirming the brass requiring some sort of lube to reduce the sticky problem.

-Joe

Sticky die's. I just had the same issue with some new Star-line brand Nickel plated brass... Brass was real sticky in all of my lee die's on my classic turret press. I just ran the new brass in my tumbler for a while with some Flitz polish and that was the end of the problem. I'm not sure if its the de-burring that takes place or the semi-wax job the Lyman corn cob media along with the Flitz puts on the new brass. Heck the new brass might be etched to be super clean with something acidic. I have no idea. Polishing the brass, even though new, solved my problems.
 
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