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Dies for Lee Classic Turret

Feb 4, 2006
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I have just finished reading the ABC of Reloading, and jumped into reloading by buying a Lee Classic Turret. My intention for now is to only reload 9mm to start with and then move on to different loads. Now to my question, I need to buy the accessories for the turret, i.e.: scale, powder measure, dies. Do you guys have any recommendations for which type of lee dies I should use? Should I stick with all Lee equipment or go with other brands? And is a tumbler really necessary for what I am doing. Also please list the other little gizmos that will help me start my new hobby.

Thanks for listening to a newb


I personally believe RCBS makes the best equipment, though I've heard good things about Dillon presses. Buy the best powder measure and beam-scale you possibly can. I suggest RCBS uni-flow and the 10-10 scale. I'd also suggest RCBS carbide dies. I still use the old cleaning method of vinegar and salt but I'm looking to get tumbler most ricky-tick.

Hope that helps.
I find Lee dies to be more than sufficient, and use them exclusively. I also use the Lee powder scale. Not as easy to read or use than a $200 automatic digital scale, but for under $20 it does the job and is accurate. For the powder measure, go for the Lee auto disk. It makes use of the charge through die from Lee, and automatically drops the powder charge right into the case for you. Set it up once for your load, verify on the scale, then don't touch it. As for a tumbler, it's not necessary to have, however you will need some way to clean your brass before putting it through any of the dies. Auto loader brass hits the ground, and gets gritty and dirty. As long as the cases are free of any debris, that's all you need to worry about. I'm sure you will find out sooner rather than later that having to wipe out every piece of spent brass is very tedious, and time consuming.

Hope this helps.
One of my tool heads for my Dillon 650 has a Dillon, a Redding, and a Lee die. I use a Lee sizing die that has been cut undersized to resize Glock brass that has bulged. Other people I know use the Lee FCD.

Whatever components you use, be careful with 9mm. Seating a bullet too deep can send pressures dangerously high by decreasing an already small case volume (kabboom!). Therefore, I recommend a nice set of calipers. A digital from Fowler is cheap.

I clean loaded ammo with brakekleen rolled in a towel. I guess you could do the same with brass.

Get the Dillon catalog. If not for the equipment, for the cover.
I worked for a lot of years with a balance scale. I finally broke down and bought a digital and I am still wondering why I waited so long. The accuracy and ease of operation is amazing.

I feel a basic set up should be as follows:

Press with proper carbide die set
quality scale-Don't be cheap it will last you a long time
Calipers-Digital or dial work real well.
Through the die powder measure makes reloading easier
Some type of case lube
case cleaner/tumbler- I reloaded for years with no cleaning just used the carbide dies and had no trouble.

Take a look at the Lee site http://www.leeprecision.com/cgi/cat...l/catalog/turretpress.html#ClassicTurretPress They have a Kit that shows the basic components

Here are some links for you
http://www.eguns.com/ Dillon precision at discount. Tell them Gary from MA sent you.

Good luck and depending on where you are, help is usually available

If you think you'll ever reload precision rifle rounds get the best beam-scale you can, such as the RCBS. You can't effectively trickle powder on a dig scale.
I don't weigh each powder charge for match ammo. Didn't have the time when shooting Bench Rest and loading between relays. If I can shoot groups that are sub .2MOA (yes two tenth's of an inch at 100 meters) using a measure, I would think it works.

I will echo to not use a digital scale when weighing each charge, and for the same reason.
Adam_MA said:
Why can't you effectively trickle powder onto a digital?

The dig scale can't keep up and you'll end up trickling too much powder. A beam scale is instant, not temp. sensitive and doesn't need calibrated.
Guys, if my Selley Masker Converted RCBS Uniflow can throw accurate enough charges for a competitive IBS Heavy Varmint gun, why would anybody want to weigh every charge?

Even a regular RCBS Uniflow will do it, once you put a baffle in it. And the baffle is simple. Redding's measure comes with one, IIRC.
My Uniflow has a baffle and does not throw as accurate as trickling. You may get away with it for short range ammo (out to 300) with 10 - 20 % fliers but you won't get away with it at medium and long ranges.

If I can get .200" groups at 100 meters (or better) in the Bench Gun, then explain to me why it won't suffice for 600 yards with a High Power gun? I have had aggregates in the high .200's. That's 5 record 5 shot groups. And I'm not using the most current equipment, either.

Now, that being said, some powders are more critical of minor differences in the charge, and some throw more consistently than others. That's why most Bench Rest shooters use certain powders.
Quite frankly, I find it very hard to believe you shot 25 rounds in a group smaller than the diameter of the bullet itself loading the way you describe.
Hey guys thanks for all the great advice, it has been very helpful. While ordering I did not notice that I had ordered a Lee Perfect Powder Measure instead of a Lee Autodisk Measure. Can anyone tell me if the perfect measure is any good or should I return it for the autodisk?

So far this is what I have:

Lee Classic Turret
Lee Perfect Powder Measure
Lee Universal Charging die
Frankford Electronic Caliper
Lee Safety Powder Scale
Lee Deluxe Handgun 4 die set for 9mm

Other than a loading manual is there anything I am forgetting? I want to make this a good experience so that's why I am asking.

Thanks Again Guys
The Lee Perfect Powder Measure is a stand alone powder measure. You have to manually work the action to get the powder to drop. The Auto Disk powder measure will mount on top of your universal charging die, and when the case is moved into the die with the stroke of the ram, it will automatically dispense the powder into the case. To take advantage of the increased speed of the turret press, you will want the Auto Disk.

Also, while ordering, do yourself a favor and purchase this to go along with it.
http://www.midwayusa.com/eproductpage.exe/showproduct?saleitemid=150005 The way the auto disk measure works, is you have these disks that go under the powder hopper with different size holes in them. The disk moves back and the powder drops into the hole. When the case is pressed into the charging die the disk moves forward and drops the charge into the case. With the adjustable charge bar, you can fine tune your powder amount to get exactly what you want.

I second the Charge Bar recommendation (thanks again Adam!). I loaded 400 rounds this weekend with the charge bar, and the case feeder. For a cheap little press, this thing rips once it's set up!
TonyD said:
Quite frankly, I find it very hard to believe you shot 25 rounds in a group smaller than the diameter of the bullet itself loading the way you describe.

Tony, start checking out the results from Bench Rest matches. I quit competing long ago (late 1980's), but many folks still shoot. Most of the competitors don't weigh their powder, they use measures. Most of them don't use regular dies, they use Wilson hand dies (sizer and seater), or equivalent.

Trust me, it works. Several world record groups have been made using these methods.
So I look pretty good to start reloading besides that? I will return the perfect powder measure for the autodisk and get the charge bar as well. Does anyone know what Midways return policy is? I couldn't find it on their site.

Looks good, but you don't need the Universal Charging Die, the 9mmk specific charging/expanding die with the 4 die set.

I couldn't find anything on their return policy either. You'll probably need to call them.
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