MEC Reloaders/conversion kits

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MEC Reloaders/conversion kits

Postby countrygent36 » Wed Dec 27, 2006 9:10 pm

Has anyone with the 600jr. Mark V, tried the 3 1/2" conversion kit? I got one but am having great difficulty with the crimping. It want's to crunch the hull before it crimps. I lengthened the column like I was supposed to but it seems like it's still too short.

HELP???!!!
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Postby thaner » Wed Dec 27, 2006 10:33 pm

I think you have a simple crimp die adjustment issue. Find the instructions for adjusting the crimp die. You need to back off on part with the 1/4 round metal plate and maybe back off on the center punch section also. Then you can work up on the crimp for closing and depth of the punch. It could be either one of those adjustments depending on what the crushing looks like. If you don't have the instructions check Mec on line. If you can't find that let me know and I will look it up for you and maybe fax or e-mail you a scan.
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Postby countrygent36 » Wed Dec 27, 2006 11:06 pm

thaner wrote:I think you have a simple crimp die adjustment issue. Find the instructions for adjusting the crimp die. You need to back off on part with the 1/4 round metal plate and maybe back off on the center punch section also. Then you can work up on the crimp for closing and depth of the punch. It could be either one of those adjustments depending on what the crushing looks like. If you don't have the instructions check Mec on line. If you can't find that let me know and I will look it up for you and maybe fax or e-mail you a scan.


Thanks thaner,

That was certainly part of it. I did finally get one shell to crimp correctly, but I had to do it ever so slowly. The good crimp looks like new. The problem is no support for the longer hull. And, with the center post in the upmost position, it really has no support to keep it straight either. I adjusted the cam to the full up position to try to offset the problem.

The longer hull doesn't alow any room for the cam to "roll thru" to full bottom without putting downward force on the entire hull while crimping. I believe that if the "outer die" (for lack of a better description) were about 3/4" longer to support the hull right above the brass, this wouldn't happen.

Hope this rambling makes sense to ya.
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Postby thaner » Thu Dec 28, 2006 9:19 am

It does and it sounds like your crimp die is not adjusted all the way up if you can't cycle the press all the way. It sounds like you are only getting a crimp if you do not cycle the press all the way down. If this is the case and your getting a good crimp without cycling the press all the way I would say both your center and main crimp die are adjusted down too far. Unfortunately I don't load the 3 1/2" loads on my 600. However the main crimp die on all the presses are the same as far as I know and I have every thing but a steel master. I don't have a steel master, but from what I understand it is basically a grabber set up with the steel kit. I still think the problem is in the setting on your main crimp die. Double check your instructions and make sure you are going the correct way. Make sure you go all the way in the setting on the crimp die and have it backed off and then work your way back. You should be able to get it so it will not crimp all the way with a full cycle so start easing into the crimp and if you feel it getting hard like it is trying to set the crimp back off, check it and make an adjustment to the die. Do this until it goes down easy and doesn’t crimp all the way and then start dialing it back in.

It could also be the load. You would probably know if the load is not setting down good in the hull, but that's the only other thing I could think of right of hand. Steel loads can be a little tricky because the wad doesn’t have a cushion sections. Some hulls can also be harder to work with than others. The new AA hulls are an example. I picked some up off he ground at the club and they were mixed with my old style AA hulls and I had a bunch crush on me. I couldn’t figure out what was going on until I cut them open and saw the hull was different. The funny thing was that only about 50 % crushed and the others were fine. A slight crimp pressure adjustment and they were all loading fine.

Can you post a pic of the crushed hull and the crimp? Maybe one of the crimp die setting? I would assume that if you are not really crushing them way down it’s not a setting issue on the post in the press. Is there any difference in the hole spacing in the post from one side to the other where there could be a slight variation in the press height if you install it in a different hole?
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Postby pennsyltucky » Thu Dec 28, 2006 8:16 pm

have you backed the cam off all the way? if the press is moving to the side during the crimp, u need to tighten the lock bolt on the "stem" more. if u need to fabricate a little, dont be shy. i had to take a chainsaw blade file to the adjusting slot on the cam for my 10ga set. solved all my troubles.

also, try to "pump" the handle down into the crimp. up and down about 1/2" while bumping the crimp down helps set the crimp even on a load that is a tad to high in the hull. and a dab of resizing lube wiped up in the crimp tube can help alot too.
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Postby countrygent36 » Thu Dec 28, 2006 8:37 pm

pennsyltucky wrote:have you backed the cam off all the way? if the press is moving to the side during the crimp, u need to tighten the lock bolt on the "stem" more. if u need to fabricate a little, dont be shy. i had to take a chainsaw blade file to the adjusting slot on the cam for my 10ga set. solved all my troubles.

also, try to "pump" the handle down into the crimp. up and down about 1/2" while bumping the crimp down helps set the crimp even on a load that is a tad to high in the hull. and a dab of resizing lube wiped up in the crimp tube can help alot too.


Actually the two that I got to crimp last night was by pumping the handle. The file is the next step. I can see that helping the problem, but creating another. I can see another "attachment" needed though to help the side to side movement. Look inside the base from the rear. There is plenty of room on either side to allow for slop. And the single bolt will strip out before you get it tight enough to stop the movement.


thaner wrote:It does and it sounds like your crimp die is not adjusted all the way up if you can't cycle the press all the way. It sounds like you are only getting a crimp if you do not cycle the press all the way down. If this is the case and your getting a good crimp without cycling the press all the way I would say both your center and main crimp die are adjusted down too far. Unfortunately I don't load the 3 1/2" loads on my 600. However the main crimp die on all the presses are the same as far as I know and I have every thing but a steel master. I don't have a steel master, but from what I understand it is basically a grabber set up with the steel kit. I still think the problem is in the setting on your main crimp die. Double check your instructions and make sure you are going the correct way. Make sure you go all the way in the setting on the crimp die and have it backed off and then work your way back. You should be able to get it so it will not crimp all the way with a full cycle so start easing into the crimp and if you feel it getting hard like it is trying to set the crimp back off, check it and make an adjustment to the die. Do this until it goes down easy and doesn’t crimp all the way and then start dialing it back in.

It could also be the load. You would probably know if the load is not setting down good in the hull, but that's the only other thing I could think of right of hand. Steel loads can be a little tricky because the wad doesn’t have a cushion sections. Some hulls can also be harder to work with than others. The new AA hulls are an example. I picked some up off he ground at the club and they were mixed with my old style AA hulls and I had a bunch crush on me. I couldn’t figure out what was going on until I cut them open and saw the hull was different. The funny thing was that only about 50 % crushed and the others were fine. A slight crimp pressure adjustment and they were all loading fine.

Can you post a pic of the crushed hull and the crimp? Maybe one of the crimp die setting? I would assume that if you are not really crushing them way down it’s not a setting issue on the post in the press. Is there any difference in the hole spacing in the post from one side to the other where there could be a slight variation in the press height if you install it in a different hole



Thaner, I do have the cam adjusted all the way, unfortunately it's probably 1/16" - 1/8" shy of clearing. Thus hanging up on the cam roller as the inner crimp die tries to seat. The instructions do not include, per say, an adjustment for the length of the hull. Of course, you and I both see the same cam adjustment doing what we want, it's just a little shy. LOL, add-ons.......always gotta tweek 'em.


I do appreciate the advice gentlemen. I think the easiest way for now is the pumping action until I get busy with the file. Good hunting fella's.


P.S. I'll try and work up some pics for ya'll to see what I'm doing here. My camera's not that good so they might be a little blurry but should be God enough to give you an idea.
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Postby pennsyltucky » Fri Dec 29, 2006 8:25 am

when u go with the file, u will need to anneal the steel around the area of the slot. use a propane torch and heat it red, then quench it in water. it wont affect the performance, but it will make it possible to file.

u could make a steel shim for inside the base to help with the slop. but i just tightened mine down harder and it quit rocking. mines a grade 8 bold and the stem is hardened steel. i doubt i could push on that little of a wrench hard enuf to hurt them.....

just keep tweeking. eventually everything wil iron out. :yes:
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Postby StoneTower » Tue Jan 02, 2007 9:34 pm

I talked to MEC today and they had me rise up the crimp starter almost all the way to the top. It dramatically improved the final crimp and its consistency. They said that for 2 3/4" & 3" the pre-crimp should bring opening in the shell down the about the size of a #2 pencil but for 3 1/2" 12G it should just start the crimp and be mostly open.

pennsyltucky wrote :"u will need to anneal the steel around the area of the slot. use a propane torch and heat it red, then quench it in water. it won’t affect the performance, but it will make it possible to file."

Actually if you want best results when annealing steel you heat it red and then cool it slow (usually a pile of wood ashes). Cooling red hot steel quickly will harden the steel. This is how you harden tool steel.

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Postby countrygent36 » Tue Jan 02, 2007 9:57 pm

StoneTower wrote:I talked to MEC today and they had me rise up the crimp starter almost all the way to the top. It dramatically improved the final crimp and its consistency. They said that for 2 3/4" & 3" the pre-crimp should bring opening in the shell down the about the size of a #2 pencil but for 3 1/2" 12G it should just start the crimp and be mostly open.

pennsyltucky wrote :"u will need to anneal the steel around the area of the slot. use a propane torch and heat it red, then quench it in water. it won’t affect the performance, but it will make it possible to file."

Actually if you want best results when annealing steel you heat it red and then cool it slow (usually a pile of wood ashes). Cooling red hot steel quickly will harden the steel. This is how you harden tool steel.

David


I did just that. I adjusted the final crimp all the way up and it crimps fine now. But I am still pumping the handle due to the extra length of hull exposed. It also helps to hold a little finger pressure on the hull right above the brass to help keep it from colapsing.


When it comes to hardening steel you want to cool it quick with oil instead of water. Water will make it brittle. The oil will absorb the heat quicker anyways and some will get absorbed into the metal, helping to fill any voids that should appear in the process. So I am told by the local steel workers anyways. I'm just a truck driver, what do I know? LOL
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Postby StoneTower » Tue Jan 02, 2007 11:23 pm

"When it comes to hardening steel you want to cool it quick with oil instead of water. Water will make it brittle. The oil will absorb the heat quicker anyways and some will get absorbed into the metal, helping to fill any voids that should appear in the process. So I am told by the local steel workers anyways. I'm just a truck driver, what do I know? LOL"

I think that oil actually cools it slower than water. The faster you cool it, the more crystals form and the harder it becomes. The trick with hardening is not to get it too hard as it will be brittle. Drill rod (round tool steel that drill bits used to be made of) comes in oil hardened or water hardened. The steel is designed to be hardened in the specific liquid. Also the temperature that the steel is heated to has a lot to do with the final hardening.
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Postby StoneTower » Tue Jan 02, 2007 11:27 pm

What brand of hulls are you working with? The Federal 3 1/2" 12g are working well for me after I made the crimp starter adjustment. MEC said that it should be almost to the top of the adjustment. I finally settled on the very top of the adjustment.

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Postby countrygent36 » Wed Jan 03, 2007 3:10 pm

StoneTower wrote:What brand of hulls are you working with? The Federal 3 1/2" 12g are working well for me after I made the crimp starter adjustment. MEC said that it should be almost to the top of the adjustment. I finally settled on the very top of the adjustment.

David


I have been using Winchester hulls mostly. I have used a few Remington as well. I still have yet to try the Federal hulls.
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Postby pennsyltucky » Thu Jan 04, 2007 8:06 am

to clear up what i was trying to say....
we werent trying to harden it. annealing is to soften it. hardening takes much more heat and a slower cooling process to allow molecules to bind in chain. cooling in oil (a carbon compound) adds carbon to the makeup of the surface, raising the surface tension.......

to anneal any hard metal, heating it to "just red" and quenching in water will take the "temper" out of it so it can be worked. the same thing we do with brass when it needs to be reformed. the working of the brass work-hardens it, and it has to be annealed, or the necks will crack.

even if i were completely wrong on the above, i know that it works, because i actually did it to my cam on my mec. the file wont even scratch it as it is. after heating to "just red" and dunking it in a dirty glass in the sink (maybe the remnants of whole milk made all the difference) it was about like a chainsaw tooth. just soft enuf to be workable. there isnt any need to re-harden it if u only anneal the small area that needed to be filed... :thumbsup:
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Postby countrygent36 » Thu Jan 04, 2007 9:25 am

pennsyltucky wrote:to clear up what i was trying to say....
we werent trying to harden it. annealing is to soften it. hardening takes much more heat and a slower cooling process to allow molecules to bind in chain. cooling in oil (a carbon compound) adds carbon to the makeup of the surface, raising the surface tension.......

to anneal any hard metal, heating it to "just red" and quenching in water will take the "temper" out of it so it can be worked. the same thing we do with brass when it needs to be reformed. the working of the brass work-hardens it, and it has to be annealed, or the necks will crack.

even if i were completely wrong on the above, i know that it works, because i actually did it to my cam on my mec. the file wont even scratch it as it is. after heating to "just red" and dunking it in a dirty glass in the sink (maybe the remnants of whole milk made all the difference) it was about like a chainsaw tooth. just soft enuf to be workable. there isnt any need to re-harden it if u only anneal the small area that needed to be filed... :thumbsup:



I guess it is easy to mistake the two, annealing and hardening. I am certainly guilty. Just call me a DA for a day or two. But once I read back thru the posts I sa what you said. Thanks for clearing that up.
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