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Discussion Starter #1
How 'bout some suggestions?

I was resizing some 223 AI cases last night. Got in a rythm and didn't realize that I had an odd sized case until I had done another. It looked like it had a step down about halfway down the case and, in fact, it did. About three cases back, one had broken in half and left the upper half in the die.

This is a JLC converted type "S" die, so I had a little larger hole in the top to work with, but it hasn't helped. Right or wrong here is what I've done so far;
I used a small punch to try and push the case back through, but the brass was too soft and it all broke off. Then I used a drill to try the same thing. Again too soft. Now I have the remains of the case, without the neck jammed tightly into the body section of the die. I say jammed because, as you read above, I sized two cases in behind it before I realized I had a problem.

I have a couple of ideas, but I really don't want to screw up this die and either of them could be fatal.

So, any ideas?

Thanks in advance,
Rick
 

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Greyfox, the only thing I might try first would be a seal pick and go in from the bottom to see if you can get under the brass then lift it up to relieve the pressure and then it should come out. Dies are hard so the pick shouldn't hurt it. Good Luck.
 

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First the simple stuff. Go get some dry ice, a drill bit or thread tap smaller than the die shoulder, larger than the brass ID (The reamer for the chamber might just work here as well if you have it).

Simple fix - pack the die in dry ice, standing up, the brass will contract more than the steel and might just fall out on it's own.

If that doesn't happen, try slowly turning the drill or tap into the brass, then repeat step one and use the bit/tap/screw to pull the brass out.

Next you might try using a fairly low temp solder to attach a threaded pulling rod to the trapped brass - and repeat step two.

Either way you should have better results as much lower temperatures where the brass has contracted to a smaller diameter.

Last resort would probably be to ream the brass out with the same reamer used to convert the die (assuming you have it). But do this at room temp or a bit above or else you end up cutting the die material and ruining it (which is what I'm sure you are trying to avoid).
 

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Well .........

This is a bummer. (I'm Thinking outloud here don't know if any of this would work)You could soak it in something To try to get in between the die and the brass. If you can get a reamer and try to turn it out with it,But a chamber reamer would be bigger,maybe a standard 223 reamer would catch the neck. Push a tight brush in from the top it may not be as tight as it looks. Send it back to the factory.
Good luck
EricT
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Let me add a couple of things;
I don't have the reamer. Got the die used. So that solution is out.

The brush idea won't work. This brass is really crushed into the die since I ran tow cases after the first one broke....ie, this thing is tight.

One idea I've considered is to use a standard 223 case (tapered sides) and put a small amount of JB Weld on the shoulder, wait for it to set up and try to drive out the whole thing from the top with a punch. I hestate to use this approach because if the JBW gets on the die wall, I'm screwed.

Another possiblity is to use a Dremel tool and try to grind a groove in the brass. Problem-possible damage to the die wall.
 

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Let me add a couple of things;
I don't have the reamer. Got the die used. So that solution is out.
I was afraid of that.

The brush idea won't work. This brass is really crushed into the die since I ran two cases after the first one broke....ie, this thing is tight.
Which why you will need to chill it down. The brush idea might just work cold.

One idea I've considered is to use a standard 223 case (tapered sides) and put a small amount of JB Weld on the shoulder, wait for it to set up and try to drive out the whole thing from the top with a punch. I hestate to use this approach because if the JBW gets on the die wall, I'm screwed.
That's what release agents are for, might work. Basicly the same as what I was proposing with solder. But again you will probably have better luck pulling on it while very cold.

Another possiblity is to use a Dremel tool and try to grind a groove in the brass. Problem-possible damage to the die wall.
It's not a choice that I would make. I'd probably try soaking it in copper remover before that and let it eat away the brass before resorting to a dremel.
 

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Being a low class machinist, I have to support Vibe's concept of cooling down the material. If you have no dry ice handy, just stick it in the freezer overnight. Just be patient with the process, but try to accomplish the task before the material reaches room temps.

But unless you really need the die sooner then later, I'd send it too the factory as EricT suggests. They have the 'specialized' tooling to repair dies and I'd be willing to bet they have seen this before.

I've reamed broken cases out of Contender chambers. Not a task for the nervous types.

I know this was no real help, but I hope it helps.
 

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rick

how in the world did you pull a case apart and not FEEL somethnig wrong or SEE it :confused: you been at the wine again ;)
 

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Greyfox, your idea of JB Weld is right on the money.....

it should only take a little dab to get the job done.

If the JB does not work, then the dry ice may work or you may just freeze the die for several days to see what happens, just for grins.

The very last thing that you want to do to a die or a rifle chamber is stick anything metal in there because the slightest scratch may ruin your die or chamber.

I had this exact conversation with a friend of mine that had a Head seperation in a 257 Ackley...great shooting factory barrel. He was a salesman for Cleavland Twist Drill and had umpteen thousand dollars of specialized taps at his disposal. Over the top of my stern warning, he carefully inserted a fine thread tap into the chamber by hand and snatched half of the case out of the chamber. Upon his next trip to the range, the fired piece of brass stuck to the chamber due to scratches he had put in the chamber walls.

So, try the JB, then freezing, then send it off to someone that deals with this type of problem. Dang, don't you wish that there was someone else to blame for this!? I hate me when this happens!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Keith...

after thinking a little more about it, I agree, the JBW may be the best shot. However, now I'm thinking that I may put some release on the bare case walls so that JBW won't stick to them, and then put enough JBW in the case itself to make it solid. I should be able to drive it out from the top after freezing the whole thing.

I also agree about using anything metal. I know how easy it is to scratch the walls and don't want to go there.

Thanks for your suggestions.

Rick
 

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problems

soak the die in kroil oil and heat for a few minuites not too hot, then put in the freezer for several hours, push out with brush.
 

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Thoughts

1. If you send it back to the die maker, they may decide to replace it with a new die body, WiTHOUT the bushing conversion.

2. If the heating-cooling-soaking-epoxy ideas don't work, I would cut the head and front body off another case, insert it in the chamber behind the broken piece to act as a guide and chamber protector for a tap sized to fit the front of the broken body, screw in the tap, then knock it out from the top.

Bruce
 

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Discussion Starter #15
thanks for your input Bruce,
I too, had already thought of that about sending the die back...not an option.

I've decided to go with the epoxy. Currently I have partially filled the stuck portion of the case with Devcon Steel and will wait 'til tomorrow before putting it in the freezer. The I'll attempt to push it out from the top.

If that doesn't do it, I may try to tap and drill the epoxy with a much smaller size tap to avoid scratching the walls.

One thing about doing stupid things is that it gives you an opportunity to learn something.

Rick
 

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Wondering if one of the 2 cases you formed with the step down would glue (verry little applied)into the broken case. would be a nice fit and possibly be able to pull it with press ? or be able to press from top hole in die. Reverse the die in the press threading from bottom to top . Be able to use press ram as the press.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Southpaw,
I have considered a variation on that. Settled on partially filling the case with Devcon Steel and will try to push it out from the top when it cures. This should do it if the Devcon will adhere to the brass.

Thanks for the suggestion.

Rick
 

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Try Cerrosafe

Plug the base of the die so molten Cerrosafe won't run out. I use cotton patching - you won't get it hot enough to burn. Heat the die until it's warm to the touch and pour in the molten Cerrosafe until it comes to the top of the shoulder/neck area but not so high that it flows into the bushing area. You want to cover as much of the stuck brass as possible but not allow the Cerrosafe to flow into the bushing area because you're going to push it back out. Let the die cool for about 90 minutes. Use a brass punch and drive out the cerrosafe and, hopefully, the remaining case section.
I've never tried this on a die but it worked on a .223 neck stuck in a chamber that resisted everything else I tried.
Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Jon,
Had not thought of that one, but I may try it. Yesterday I used some Devcon, but it did not adhere to the brass well and I was about to try again with JB Weld. The cerrosafe may be the thing. I'll let y'all know what works.

Rick
 
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