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I’ve been reloading rifle for decades now, but really have practically no experience with pistol reloading. I’m going to start reloading 9 mm and 357 magnum. After a little bit of reading, I’ve decided I want to purchase dies rather than use the old Herters dies that my father had. Just curious if anybody has a preference between the RCBS carbide dies, or the Hornady titanium nitride dies and why. The choice is between those two because both are readily available locally. Any other cautions or advice would be much appreciated also. Thanks for your help.

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I like Lyman carbide die sets. The expander die is a twostep expander and makes aligning the bullets for seating straighter for me.


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Got rid of all my Hornady handgun dies early 90’s and went RCBS with no regrets.



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I have a mix of Hornady and RCBS dies with a scattering of others including Lyman. I haven't experienced any preference of one over the other but I'm satisfied with "good enough" accuracy rather than the penultimate. Maybe if my rifle and pistol skills were at a higher level I would have a stronger preference.

To start, I picked based on price and availability for the most part with Hornady edging out RCBS as the local farm store priced Hornady a few dollars lower than RCBS and had a much larger selection of dies. The store would specifically offer sales on Hornady products a coulee times a year with a general reloading sale another time or two. This, plus Hornady's bullet offer of 100 bullets with the purchase of a set of dies tipped me in that direction a few times.

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I think all of my pistol dies are Lee and I have no real complaints.

I DID get one of the two-carbide-ring Redding .45 Colt dies and like it very much. It doesn’t size the bottom half of the case quite as much and my loads don’t jingle in my Bisley like a Salvation Army Santa ringing his bell.

They’re spendy, but I’m thinking about another in. .38 special.

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I like the actual carbide dies over the dies using TiN. Therefore, I like Lee better than Hornady. They don't seem to scratch cases where the TiN does scratch.

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all I have ever used is RCBS. Never had a negative experience.


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Redding Titanium Carbide. Nothing is comparable.

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Originally Posted by TooOldToCare
Redding Titanium Carbide. Nothing is comparable.

Yep. They'll gouge brass like no other.

Multiple sets.

Generally go RCBS for carbide and steel dies.

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Have and have used Carbide RCBS for years. No problems. Latest set in 41Mag is from Hornady. Have only loaded 50 but so far so good.


A true sportsman counts his achievements in proportion to the effort involved and fairness of the sport. - S. Pope
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I've got a mixture of RCBS and Lyman carbide with a couple of Lee for because. I've got no complaints with them and loaded thousands or rounds.

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Originally Posted by centershot
Have and have used Carbide RCBS for years. No problems. Latest set in 41Mag is from Hornady. Have only loaded 50 but so far so good.

Aww damn guy, the only set of Hornady dies that never sold over umpteen times trying. I would have given em to ya, been sitting unused for 30+ years.

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]



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RCBS's customer service is AAA+. Hornady, not so much. I haven't had the scratching issues (or it didn't bother me) with the TiN. If I have to buy new dies I usually go with Lee - love the Factory Crimp die


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RCBS is top notch taking care of people.... really great service.

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I have a mixture of RCBS and Redding carbide 3 die pistol sets in addition to a few collet type Lee factory crimp dies. Never messed with anything TiN.


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Lyman or RCBS carbide sizer and just about any seating die for me. If you very, very lightly lube about every third case, the press handle almost falls by itself.


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Lee carbide for handgun . Also got Lee expander die . It just makes my process easier . Use RCBS for necked rifle brass .
Satisfied with both .

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Originally Posted by Swifty52
Originally Posted by centershot
Have and have used Carbide RCBS for years. No problems. Latest set in 41Mag is from Hornady. Have only loaded 50 but so far so good.

Aww damn guy, the only set of Hornady dies that never sold over umpteen times trying. I would have given em to ya, been sitting unused for 30+ years.

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

That's the way I roll, day late and a dollar short. Darn Hornady dies cost me $85 from Midway.


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Originally Posted by centershot
That's the way I roll, day late and a dollar short. Darn Hornady dies cost me $85 from Midway.

More often than not that’s my route also. To tell the truth they have been kicking around so long forgot I had em.



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My preference runs to RCBS but they all work.


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