Author Topic: What is the diameter of your neck expander?  (Read 182 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.


  • Posts: 1
    • View Profile
What is the diameter of your neck expander?
« on: May 09, 2022, 10:20:12 pm »
What is the diameter of your neck expander? What is the most desirable size for swaged(soft) bullets? Bullets are .4523 diameter.


  • Global Moderator
  • ****
  • Posts: 1195
    • View Profile
    • Star Machine Works
Re: What is the diameter of your neck expander?
« Reply #1 on: May 10, 2022, 01:20:45 pm »
I don't really recommend going with a larger sizer.   First of are you are really overworking the brass.   Sizing it way down then expanding it back up.   Brass gets work hardened and you will significantly shorten the life of the brass.   Also, with the larger expander you will tend to build up a lot of brass on the expander.  With thinner brass like 32 S&WL you end up tearing the case.  Probably won't tear a 45 ACP case, but your will notice a lot more drag as you raise the tool head.

So, what's the alternative.   Hone the carbide ring so you are not oversizing the case.   The carbide ring of a typical 45 ACP sizing die has an ID of ~0.467".   When you size Federal brass you end up with a case that accepts a 0.449" pin gauge.   You will probably get different results with different brass.    I recently honed out a 45 ACP sizing die to 0.471".   With the Federal brass I was using, this yields a case that accepts a 0.451" pin gauge.

Bruce Williams
Star Machine Works
Star, the original blue Press.  Made by machinist, not machines