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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been reloading for about two years for both pistol and rifle. I use a Dillon 550B progressive press for reloading 9mm and 45 ACP. Recently, while reloading 9mm I began to notice that I was getting longitudinal scratch marks on the exteriors of my casings. I called Dillon and they asked me whether I had lubricated my carbide dies when I first started using them. I told him that I had not. He ridiculed me and told me that "everyone lubricates their dies".

I carefully read the Dillon manual when I first set up my system and there was nothing in there that said that lubrication was required for carbide dies. I also watched the Dillon video which also made no mention of using lubrication.

What do you guys do? Do you use lubrication or not? I've never heard of lubricating the dies themselves. Of course, I do lubricate my rifle casings when I resize with my RCBS Rock Chucker.

If you do use lubrication for your pistol casings, how and what do you use?
 

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I don't lube my carbide dies for straight wall cases. The marks you see mean nothing and will not affect the integrity of the case. That seems like a strange statement from Dillon. Bottle neck cases are a different story, always lube them.
 

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No lube here using carbide dies on pistol.

I also have 357SIG Dillon dies, and don't use lube with them either (although Dillon says to), I just make sure the cases are polished well, zero issues. Pistol cases just don't have the large amount of bearing surface that rifle brass do. The only handgun I do lube is .30 Luger, but next time I load a batch I'm going to try the same trick a lot of 357 SIG reloaders do. I'll try sizing initially using 9mm carbide die, then finish off the case necks using my steel .30 Luger die.

BTW, RCBS instructions state that lubrication is not required with their carbide dies.......

Chuck
 

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I never lube my carbide dies since that was the main reason for purchasing them and as flintlock62 said, the scratches will cause no problems.
 

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You have to clean the dies every once and a while.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the info. Forgot to mention when I posted earlier, Dillon actually had me send the die back to them for repair. I got the box just before I left for the holiday and did not have a chance to open it before I left to see what they did to it.
 

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I lube my cases even though I have carbide dues. My first step in reloading is to punch out the primers, then I clean the brass in a ultrasonic cleaner. Before I size them, I use Case Slick made by RCBS. This is vegetable oil diluted with a solvent so you can spray a thin film onto your brass. I size the brass, expand the case mouth, then clean them in the ultrasonic cleaner to remove the lube. I rinse the brass three times in tap water. I dry them in the tumbler that was originally meant to separate brass from corn cob polishing media. I put the brass in the separator along with a half dozen wash cloths, and turn the handle. I don't get any spots of mineral deposits on the brass, and it is quick and cheap. The ultrasonic cleaner gets the brass shinier that the polishing media ever did.
 

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I never lubed my revolver cases when using tungsten carbide sizing dies. As I recall the manual specifically said not to do this.
 

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I do lightly lube the cases. but to keep the scratches to a minimum I clean the cases well before running them. And I clean the dies with a bore brush before using them. When I bought my first set of Carbide dies I was told that if you did not lube the cases they would not stick. But I always found that things ran smoother with a light lube. I have always used a spray lube like One Shot, or RCBS's Case Slick. Both of them wash off with plain water. I have also used Lee's case lube. It feels like some kind of soap. It says that you don't need to wash it off before loading. And it won't foul the powder. Good Luck DR
 

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I lightly lube my used cases before running the XL650 press. It reduces the force needed, I feel making for more uniform ammo and probably longer life of the press. Like the others have mentioned, clean your dies periodically. I use bore cleaner or brake cleaner.
 

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When I start to resize and decap 500pcs of 44mag or 44spc brass, in a carbide die...you can bet that I use lube...makes it much easier on my old rotator cuff. I do this about 4 times a year and I use lube every time.
 

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If I were going to lube my cases first, I wouldn't have paid extra for the carbide dies.


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If I were going to lube my cases first, I wouldn't have paid extra for the carbide dies.


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Question...

Did it ever occur to you that when I bought these dies, years ago, that there was no problem with my rotator cuff hurting while I was resizing these big cases?
 
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