Mike's Reloading Bench

Engineered Solutions
for today's reloader

Station #2 Thoughts

There is an on-going conversation in the Load Master community as to whether or not to use a sizing die without the decapping pin in station two to aid in aligning the case with the primer pin. I am with the crowd that chooses not to use the die and I will tell you why. Just because Lee put a hole in the turret over station two doesn't mean there has to be something in it. If you just have to have that hole filled up you would be better off using a universal decapping die set to make shellplate contact and no case contact to help stabilize the shellplate/carrier assembly so you have better control over your COAL results. Since the Load Master primes at the top of the stroke I can't understand why one would want to introduce even more feel numbing resistance to the seating of the primer by adding an unnecessary sizing die into the mix. Simple is good my friends. Trust me on this one.

Using a sizing die in station two to "perfectly" align the case over the primer pin requires the major assumption on your part that everything else on the press is in perfect alignment. Well here's a news flash, it's not! Every press is different and for that reason some people get away with using a die in station two but the majority of us will gain no benefit from it and possibly even cause us more grief.

On the "Tips and Tools" page of this website I show how to adjust the case retainer to perfectly align the case over the primer pin. Doing this takes all the other variables out of the question and gives you total control over the alignment. With no die in station two and the case retainer adjusted to allow the case to float out over the primer pin via centrifugal force you allow the case and the primer to more or less "find" each other as they come together by being able to move slightly. We all know things always work better when each side gives just a little. If one side is rigid and the other side has to do all the moving occasional conflict is generally the result. So it is with the primer and the case.