Pads and Lubrication
is most commonly applied with a case lube pad.
form of lubrication must be applied to cases before resizing. This
task is usually performed with a lube pad. A lube pad is nothing
more than an absorbent pad, saturated with a case resizing lubricant.
This may be a commercial lube pad made specifically for the purpose,
or a common
stamp pad available at any business supply store. In use, the cases
to be lubed are rolled across the surface of the pad. This will
transfer enough of the case lube to the surface of the case to allow
it to be resized without sticking in the die.
the last few years, spray lubes have also become common, especially
with the rise in high volume progressive reloaders. Spray lubes
do speed up the lubrication process considerably. By allowing the
handloader to spread a large number of cases out in a box or similar
container, and give all of them a quick spray of lube, the need
to handle each of the cases individually is eliminated.
that are not to be full length resized will still require some lubrication
of the case neck, both inside and out. This is normally done with
a case neck brush, using either conventional case lube, or a dry
lube such as motor mica or graphite. Bonanza offers a bench mounted
unit that has three permanently affixed brushes and contains a small
reservoir of motor mica. Another method with which we have had good
results is to use a small box (about the size of a bullet box) partially
filled with small (#7 1/2 or #9 work very well) shot. Powdered graphite
is added to the shot before use, and the box is given a quick shake
before the cases are processed. Graphite is transferred to the case
by simply sticking the case neck into the shot, and giving it a
quick twist. When the case is withdrawn, the shot will fall free,
leaving a fine coating of dry lubricant on both the inside and outside
of the case neck. Neck sizing will be adequately handled by this
this time, there are several different types of lubes on the market.
These include not only the more conventional oil based lubricants,
but also water soluble and wax based lubes as well. Some are better
suited to specific tasks than others, so it does no harm to try
several before deciding which one is best suited to the particular
job at hand. Regardless of which method or type of lube is used,
all traces of the lubricant must be removed from the case before
firing. Failure to do so will result in raising pressures and bolt
thrust to potentially dangerous levels.
loading block is a tray designed to hold a number of cases as they
are moved through the respective steps of the reloading process.
Normally made of wood or plastic, they provide a convenient method
for handling a batch of cases. Loading blocks can be purchased from
almost any of the major reloading tool makers, or can be easily
fashioned from scrap wood. Most loading blocks will hold 50 or 60
cases. Custom made blocks, of course, can be tailored to fit the
reloaders needs exactly.
glasses should be worn during any shooting activity, including hand-loading.
Several handloading operations pose potential hazards for the unwary
reloader, particularly any operation involving primers. Despite
their small size, primers carry a surprisingly potent explosive
force, and must always be treated seriously. Other hazardous operations
are any form of case trimming, reaming, or turning which produce
chips or shavings. This is especially true when these operations
are performed with motorized tools that may throw chips violently
from the cutter. Safety glasses should be a standard item on every
primer flipper tray is used to orient primers for loading
into primer tubes. This tray is from Dillon Precision.
the primers have been flipped, they are loaded into the primer
pickup tube by simply pressing the tube over them one by one.
flipper is exactly what the name implies; a small tray used to flip
primers over, orienting them to be loaded into the primer tubes.
When primers are dumped (gently, please!) into the tray, some will
land cup side up, while others land anvil side up. Giving the primer
tray a gentle side to side shake caus- es all the primers to flip
anvil side up. Place the lid back on the primer tray and turn the
tray over. The
primers should now be cup side up, and can be picked up with a primer
tube. This avoids the necessity of ever having to touch the primers
directly, which may risk contaminating and possibly deactivating