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Thread: Bonanza dies

  1. #1
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    Default Bonanza dies

    I inherited a set of Bonanza Benchrest dies, one full length sizing die and one sliding sleeve seater die, along with the rest of my reloading gear. I hadn't even heard of Bonanza dies, and had never seen a seating die with a sliding sleeve, so I've just been using the RCBS die set that I also inhertited in the same caliber (7mmRemMag).

    In the meantime I've heard Bonanza dies mentioned, and I just got a Redding Competition S die set for my 7-08 so I'm now familiar with the advantages of a sliding sleeve seater die. Anybody feedback on Bonanza dies? I'm thinking of using them from now on, but thought I'd ask since I know next to nothing about them. I have no idea what their history is, so is there anything I should watch out for or check before using them?

    Thanks!

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    Quote Originally Posted by AKArcherdaddy View Post
    I inherited a set of Bonanza Benchrest dies, one full length sizing die and one sliding sleeve seater die, along with the rest of my reloading gear. I hadn't even heard of Bonanza dies, and had never seen a seating die with a sliding sleeve, so I've just been using the RCBS die set that I also inhertited in the same caliber (7mmRemMag).

    In the meantime I've heard Bonanza dies mentioned, and I just got a Redding Competition S die set for my 7-08 so I'm now familiar with the advantages of a sliding sleeve seater die. Anybody feedback on Bonanza dies? I'm thinking of using them from now on, but thought I'd ask since I know next to nothing about them. I have no idea what their history is, so is there anything I should watch out for or check before using them?

    Thanks!

    This might help.

    http://www.jamescalhoon.com/bonanza.php
    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tryants." (Thomas Jefferson

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    Default perfect!

    Thanks for the link Big Al. From the sound of the article Bonanza dies are high quality and Bonanza may have pioneered the sliding sleeve concept that Redding now uses in their Match S dies. Good information. Is Bonanza still making dies or did they quit or get bought out?

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    Quote Originally Posted by AKArcherdaddy View Post
    Thanks for the link Big Al. From the sound of the article Bonanza dies are high quality and Bonanza may have pioneered the sliding sleeve concept that Redding now uses in their Match S dies. Good information. Is Bonanza still making dies or did they quit or get bought out?
    No the guy that came up with the sliding sleeve die was a fellow up in Washington State by the name of Vickerman, from Cashmere, WA. I still use a few of his seating dies. Someone bought out the name and went back in production a few years ago. I got the idea that it was rather dumb to have a bunch of different seating dies and went with one die body and a double hand full of selves.

    http://www.meachamrifles.com/


    They also make a neck sizeing die, with a bunch of different size neck bushings. These bushing are not hard to make if you have a lathe.

    When you step back and look at the shopping carts full of dies you acquire over the years, you begin to see that there was another way to go with just a couple of drawers worth of die parts and and a hand full of die bodies.
    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tryants." (Thomas Jefferson

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    Default you are right

    Al,

    I totally agree with you, and was actually at about the same conclusion. Looking at the Redding Competition seater dies, all of them within a given group use the same die body, spring, micrometer, etc. The only difference is the sliding sleeve and the little cup that the bullet tip fits into. I haven't looked at the cup but the sleeve takes about 10 seconds to unscrew the top and slide it out. It would make sense to get one die body of each group and a then the sleeves/cup for each caliber you own within that group. The sleeves would cost about half of what the whole seater die costs, which is probably exactly why Redding doesn't sell them that way!

    Have you gotten the equal accuracy results with the Meacham dies? I really like the idea!

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    Quote Originally Posted by AKArcherdaddy View Post
    Al,

    I totally agree with you, and was actually at about the same conclusion. Looking at the Redding Competition seater dies, all of them within a given group use the same die body, spring, micrometer, etc. The only difference is the sliding sleeve and the little cup that the bullet tip fits into. I haven't looked at the cup but the sleeve takes about 10 seconds to unscrew the top and slide it out. It would make sense to get one die body of each group and a then the sleeves/cup for each caliber you own within that group. The sleeves would cost about half of what the whole seater die costs, which is probably exactly why Redding doesn't sell them that way!

    Have you gotten the equal accuracy results with the Meacham dies? I really like the idea!


    Because no one here that has posted anything about BPCR these dies are little known outside of that discipline of shooting. They work perfectly. The test for any die is concentricity. That is how round is the ammo it produces. I use a NECO concentricity gage and test. I also use this tool to check brass to see if it is good, bad or also ran.

    I was going to start a new thread about how poor WINCHESTER brass has become. I opened 4 bags of it last night to fill and order for .375H&H and was highly disappointed in the quality and the lack of inspection, poor mouths and uneven pinch trim. Found one case with over size base (would not fit the shellholder) out of the 200 rounds of new brass, I had five rejects. I guess this is nothing new and has become the norm as I never read of any squawks? I got to remembering all the trouble I had with RUM brass awhile back and I guess we in America have gotten use to taking it in the shorts and don't complain any more.

    What with brass running around 60.00 for this crap American made per 50 rounds of brass, I'm not going to recommend it any longer. You are better off finding and buying good European brass and pay the difference (which ain't much any more).

    I use 7X57 brass to make up some of my wildcat stuff from, I have been buying and using WINCHESTER for this stuff because of loss, Not any more. Stop loosing brass when I went to RWS. I now anneal after three loads on the brass. I get about 17 loads on the RWS, compare to 8 or 9 on the WINCHESTER brass.

    A friend of mine gave me five boxes of WINCHESTER .375H&H once fired brass to load for him the other day and I was ready to run with it until I noticed that the labels of his last load was 28 years ago. The point is I won't load this unless I clean and anneal. Figure about two minutes to set-up and anneal per case and it's just not worth the time to spend the 200 minutes on this brass, with trim time and all the other steps involved, he's better off scrapping the stuff and buying new.

    It's getting harder and harder to find good brass. I've been looking for RWS brass for several years now in .375H&H since nobody is bring it into the U.S. any longer. The best brass ever was the Hertenberger and it went the way of the corporate mergers in Europe, like a lot of other good stuff.

    It's not as if Americans can't make the best in the world, it just seems there is no longer the will for it.

    Sorry for the tirade.
    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tryants." (Thomas Jefferson

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    Default dumped them

    Well, I went home and took a closer look at the Bonanza dies. Compared to the Redding dies...there's no comparison. I took the sleeve out of the seater die, cleaned and lubed the whole thing, and put it back together. When I had the thing apart the machining looked pretty rough, and when I got it back together the sleeve still slid pretty poorly too. I can't check concentricity, so maybe Bonanza dies are perfect that way but the look and feel was not confidence inspiring so I just decided to get another set of the Redding dies. I didn't want to waste days and bullets, only to figure out my dies were the problem.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AKArcherdaddy View Post
    Well, I went home and took a closer look at the Bonanza dies. Compared to the Redding dies...there's no comparison. I took the sleeve out of the seater die, cleaned and lubed the whole thing, and put it back together. When I had the thing apart the machining looked pretty rough, and when I got it back together the sleeve still slid pretty poorly too. I can't check concentricity, so maybe Bonanza dies are perfect that way but the look and feel was not confidence inspiring so I just decided to get another set of the Redding dies. I didn't want to waste days and bullets, only to figure out my dies were the problem.

    http://www.neconos.com/details.htm I have this one, but like the looks of this one better.

    http://benchrest.com/hnh/

    The NECO I've had for about 15 or more years, it works well. The second one I think would give a little more usability.

    You really need to be able to tell what a die gives you, the only way I know of doing this is by measuring the results.
    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tryants." (Thomas Jefferson

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    Default nice!

    I'm not so far down this road to be ready to purchase a guage/meter like this...yet? Maybe someday. In the meantime it tons of fun to watch, listen, and learn. Thanks Al!

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