Short Die Die Storage Box

As I was adding more calibers to my reloading setup, a new problem surfaced: storage.  Not just storage space, but how do I store my dies in a weather resistant manner, that allows me to keep the dies installed in the turret head?  To me this was important so that I didn’t have to re-calibrate them every time I swap calibers in my press.  This instantly ruled out using the plastic boxes that the dies came in.  I also wanted a place to keep things like case gauges and shell plates/holders with the dies/turret heads.  As a result I came up with this homemade solution.

How to make a weatherproof storage container for Lee Precision 5-hole turret heads/pistol dies and accessories:

    1. Start with a Plano 1212 ammo can.  You can use any ammo can really, but these were on sale for $5 at Amazon and Walmart.  Really what you want is something that is a rectangle shape and not tapered like the typical 30 cal cans are.  The downside to the 1212 is that it is short, so it won’t accommodate the taller dies.  I am able to fit Lee Precision 300 AAC, 357 Sig, and 40 S&W dies installed in the turret head, plus the shell plates and case gauges in this box just fine.

 

  1. If you are using an ammo can different than the Plano 1212 then you measurements may be a little different but what you will need is:
      • ½” PVC Pipe cut into
        • 2x 2 ½ in lengths
        • 2x 3 in lengths
      • 3x ½ in 90 degree 3 way elbows (make sure you get the ones that have one end threaded)
      • 3x ½ in threaded nipples (plastic)

  2. Take 1 of the elbows and insert a 3 in piece of PVC pipe into each of the slip fitting ends so you end up with a V shape
  3. Now take the other 2 elbows and put them on the open end of the PVC pipe facing the opposite direction of the middle elbow so you start to create a M shape
  4. Now insert a 2 ¼ in piece of PVC on each of the remaining open ends of the elbow completing the M.  Don’t worry about keeping it level or straight, we will flatten it out when we put it into the box
  5. Then put the ½ in PVC end caps on the ends of the 2 ¼ PVC pieces
  6. Now insert the ½ in nipples into the threaded ends of the elbows.  Screw them in hand tight.  I use a pair of pliers to give them an extra half turn to make sure they don’t go anywhere
  7. Last step before fitting into the ammo box is to take some sandpaper (200 grit or coarser) and flatten down the threads on the plastic nipple.  This will make taking the turret head off and putting it back on much easier.  If you don’t do this the threads on the empty dies station will get caught on the threads of the nipple
  8. After assembling the stand, place it into the ammo box and press down on the joints to flatten it out.  It should be snug into the box so if it gets moved, the stand stays in place.
  9. Put the shell plates, turret heads with dies installed, and any other equipment you want to store in the ammo box

And that’s it, you are all done!

With the ammo box costing me about $5 I spent a total of $12 for all the parts to put this together.  You can get everything except the ammo box from Lowe’s or Home Depot, or any other hardware store.  Hope you found this helpful!  #reloadingisfun