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Old 07-01-2018, 11:26 AM
1775usmarine 1775usmarine is offline
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Default Reloading for a S&W 33-1

I've started my journey in reloading for my 38S&W 33-1. My first 2 groups of 5 were running from 469 to 538 FPS with a standard deviation of 18. I'm using 2.2gr titegroup and using the max oal length to start. I know I have to adjust both eventually.

My issue is I'm using the Lee 38 S&W 3 die set and when I tried to load the round in the cylinder the last 1/10th of an inch I had to give it a push to go in. After firing I had to give the ejector rod a good tap to remove them. I've never used a seating/crimping die before and tried to follow the procedure to set up online. I've always used 4 die sets.

I don't believe that I'm getting a good crimp on my rounds and it seem that my expansion die is not giving me enough flare to seat the bullets easily. I've messed around with the die and went from no flare straight to crushed case with no real in between.

I'm using new PPU brass and Missouri Bullet 148gr coated. Any tips or tricks to help would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 07-01-2018, 02:30 PM
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Are you roll crimping or taper crimping? If taper crimping the case neck may be a little too large and hitting a small amount of carbon buildup in the chambers. If roll crimping, you can accidentally get too much crimp and the case end can swell out making seating fully difficult. If you aren't getting enough crimp the round may not be sealing enough causing blow by and causing carbon buildup.
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Old 07-01-2018, 03:45 PM
eddie76 eddie76 is offline
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I also have a 33-1. One of my favorites to take to the range. I have settled in on 2.7 grains of AA#2 with the 145grain Missouri .361" bullet. I taper crimp as a separate operation. Works for me.
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Old 07-01-2018, 05:28 PM
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I'd suggest you reread the directions to that Lee die set. They tell you how to set the crimp. I have been setting mine very light and have had no issues, but being educated in a recent thread I plan to start crimping more tightly.

Basically, you just need to screw down the crimping/seating die a bit more that crimp more tightly.

Last edited by dr. mordo; 07-01-2018 at 05:36 PM.
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Old 07-01-2018, 07:03 PM
1775usmarine 1775usmarine is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by H Richard View Post
Are you roll crimping or taper crimping? If taper crimping the case neck may be a little too large and hitting a small amount of carbon buildup in the chambers. If roll crimping, you can accidentally get too much crimp and the case end can swell out making seating fully difficult. If you aren't getting enough crimp the round may not be sealing enough causing blow by and causing carbon buildup.
I would assume the die does a taper.

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Originally Posted by dr. mordo View Post
I'd suggest you reread the directions to that Lee die set. They tell you how to set the crimp. I have been setting mine very light and have had no issues, but being educated in a recent thread I plan to start crimping more tightly.

Basically, you just need to screw down the crimping/seating die a bit more that crimp more tightly.
Like I said i have always used a factory crimp die for all my other loads and have had no issues. I've never messed around with a 3 die set. I'll try tinkering with the crimp after seating the bullet a bit deeper first.
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Old 07-02-2018, 09:11 AM
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Most revolver caliber 3 die sets are set for roll crimp, unless marked on the box differently. What do your crimps look like?
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Old 07-02-2018, 12:13 PM
1775usmarine 1775usmarine is offline
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Quote:
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Most revolver caliber 3 die sets are set for roll crimp, unless marked on the box differently. What do your crimps look like?
They are definitively taper.
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Old 07-02-2018, 10:00 PM
HKSmith HKSmith is offline
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I've been reloading .38 S&W for 20 years with Lee dies. My dies apply a roll crimp, which is correct for rimmed revolver cartridges. Almost all bullets for this cartridge have a crimp groove, which determines the COAL with these bullets.

You mentioned that you are using a 148 grain MBC coated bullet. Is this the 148 grain DEWC bullet? If so, it has a large groove about halfway down the bullet, which can be used as a crimp groove. This would leave the bullet half in and half out of the case, which would be correct for the shorter .38 S&W case, unlike the .38 Special in which 148 grain WC's are seated flush with the case mouth.

Try backing off your seating die so no crimp is applied. Then screw in the seating stem until the top of the crimp groove in the bullet is just above the case mouth. Then back off the seating stem and screw in the die body until it roll crimps the mouth of the case into the crimp groove. Then screw the seating stem back in until it contacts the bullet and you should be all set. If this doesn't work, let us know. While it's possible Lee is supplying .38 S&W die sets that taper crimp, I think it's unlikely.
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Old 07-03-2018, 01:29 AM
eddie76 eddie76 is offline
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The Missouri 145 grain 38 S&W bullet has no crimp groove. It looks like a 147 grain 9 mm bullet except fatter at .361 dia. My Lee 3 die set makes a taper crimp.
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Old 07-03-2018, 01:39 AM
eddie76 eddie76 is offline
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Also, the only problem the OP is having is that he is not screwing down the die body enough to take out the bell and crimp the bullet. Not a big issue.
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Old 07-03-2018, 10:05 AM
1775usmarine 1775usmarine is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eddie76 View Post
Also, the only problem the OP is having is that he is not screwing down the die body enough to take out the bell and crimp the bullet. Not a big issue.
That could be it. I'll definitely be trying the suggestions given. It'll probably be a week or so before I get back to it and try again. I work midnight's and my wife has a small business so that comes first before reloading.
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