Author Topic: How to make a custom seating stem for ELD's or other bullets.  (Read 450 times)

Offline Alaska_guy

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How to make a custom seating stem for ELD's or other bullets.
« on: August 22, 2018, 06:13:21 PM »
Figured I would pass this along as some may not know this.  If your tired of your seating stem putting marks on your bullet I have a solution that's quick and easy and should be free if you own a glue gun and a glue stick.
 
1. Remove your seating stem from your die
2. Get your hot glue gun and glue stick out.
3. Plug in said gun with gluestick
4. Place seating stem upside down
5. lubricate a projectile
6. Place a dot of glue inside your seating stem
7. Quickly place your ELD or preferred bullet in the glue
8. Remove projectile from glue after about 10 seconds.
9. Place seating stem back in die.

Tada a custom seating stem!  No more marks on your bullets!   8)

Offline Shockwave

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Re: How to make a custom seating stem for ELD's or other bullets.
« Reply #1 on: August 22, 2018, 08:44:21 PM »
Huh, interesting.  I may have to try this.  Thanks.

Offline Alaska_guy

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Re: How to make a custom seating stem for ELD's or other bullets.
« Reply #2 on: August 22, 2018, 08:46:21 PM »
Make sure to use brake clean or something else to clean your stem before applying the glue, otherwise it will pull out of the stem the first time you try and seat the bullet because it doesn't make a good bond to the stem.

Offline binazone

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Re: How to make a custom seating stem for ELD's or other bullets.
« Reply #3 on: September 01, 2018, 02:38:37 PM »
AG, I did as you suggested and my result wasn't up to expectations. I will continue to play with it, but if I don't have the success you had I have to mention that the slight indentation the original seating stem produced, although irritating, did not seem to effect accuracy.

Offline Alaska_guy

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Re: How to make a custom seating stem for ELD's or other bullets.
« Reply #4 on: September 01, 2018, 04:01:48 PM »
Bummer.  If you wanted a more permanent solution you can use jbweld that sets in 5 minutes.  I use regular old olive oil on my bullet as a release agent.  I agree, I haven't had an issue with the mark causing accuracy issues, however I have only shot out to 320 yards so far.

Offline Xaddo

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Re: How to make a custom seating stem for ELD's or other bullets.
« Reply #5 on: September 02, 2018, 03:17:11 AM »
binazone, I have had the same experience with the seater stem marks on ELDs. Doesn't seem to effect accuracy. But does it effect BC? Just thinking out loud

Offline PA Valkyrie

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Re: How to make a custom seating stem for ELD's or other bullets.
« Reply #6 on: September 04, 2018, 12:32:35 AM »
I've been working on this. A couple of thoughts:

1. The presence of a ring indicates that the bullet has compressed somewhat, and "squirted" up into the seater stem. This is not just cosmetic. The biggest problem is that when bullet goes up farther into the seating stem than intended, the bullet will not be seated to the same depth as a bullet with no "ring". The cartridge base to ogive (CBTO) will be a bit longer on this round. If "ringing" is occurring, the CBTO's will vary because neck tension is never truly the same from case-to-case. Maybe when we get Lapua or Nosler brass for the 224V, but not now. If you are seating close to the lands the longer CBTO might allow the bullet to get forced into the lands when chambered. I've had a helluva time with this. There are ways to deal with the differences in CBTO, which I will not go into right now. Just be aware of this.

2. The hot glue trick works great for me, but it is not quite as hard in the seater stem than I would like. Alaska_guy, I really appreciate the JB Weld tip, I'll be trying that.

3. When you are doing this trick - no matter what you are filling the seater stem with - you really need to get the bullet in straight. I use a small piece of brass channel to accomplish this. I clamp the seater stem and the channel into a vise together, leaving enough channel above the seater plug opening to serve as a guide. When you are ready to push the bullte into the filler, just set it into the channel and push it down. (see photo)

4. I heat the seater stem a bit with a heat gun to help the hot glue to flow all the way into the seater plug opening. This would of course not be needed if usingJB Weld.

5. I use Super Lube as a release agent.

And yes, do clean the inside of the stem with a powerful degreaser to make sure the Hot Glue or the JB Weld sticks to it.

~ Dave
Si vis pacem, para bellum

"A gun is like a parachute. If you need one, and you don't have one, you'll probably never need one again."

Offline Alaska_guy

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Re: How to make a custom seating stem for ELD's or other bullets.
« Reply #7 on: September 04, 2018, 01:43:53 PM »
Great write up!  I normally use JBWeld with shoe polish as a release agent.  I have done this with bedding rifle stocks, actions etc and never had an issue.  Just make sure to coat everything very well. :)

I didn't want to modify my seating stem permanently as no one stocks them locally.  I would imagine you could buy a .223 seating stem locally and modify it.  That way you don't modify your Valkyrie seating stem.  I am holding out just in case someone on the market comes out with a different projectile and the Valkyrie stem happens to fit it decently...  At least that was my thought process.  The glue method can be reversed using a torch.  :)

Offline Loomis1911

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Re: How to make a custom seating stem for ELD's or other bullets.
« Reply #8 on: September 06, 2018, 06:30:57 PM »
The Hornady seating stem is a general seating stem for all .224 calibers (#044102) around $25.  You can get extra stems for about $13.00 ELD 80gr #397100.

Going to try the aforementioned tips to customize for different bullets.  Thanks

Offline Homebrewer

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Re: How to make a custom seating stem for ELD's or other bullets.
« Reply #9 on: September 09, 2018, 09:10:46 AM »
Instead of filling the seating stem... consider sacrificing one or two bullets you are getting the rings on seating, and chuck into your drill - coat with lapping compound then polish the inside of your seating stem.
Might need more than a single bullet.
Picked up this method from another shooter...

Offline PA Valkyrie

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Re: How to make a custom seating stem for ELD's or other bullets.
« Reply #10 on: September 09, 2018, 12:42:02 PM »
The lapping/polishing method works great in most instances. The problem is that it is not easily reversible. With the hot glue method you can use heat as an eraser, and change to a different bullet profile. Like I said, they both work well. But, with the Valkyrie being such a work in progress (for me), I really don't want to make anything permanent right now.
Si vis pacem, para bellum

"A gun is like a parachute. If you need one, and you don't have one, you'll probably never need one again."

Offline Loomis1911

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Re: How to make a custom seating stem for ELD's or other bullets.
« Reply #11 on: September 12, 2018, 03:51:31 PM »
Received the 80 ELD stem from Hornady, its a perfect fit for that bullet.  A little off for the 88 ELD, but much better than other stems.  Hopefully they release an 88ELD stem soon