JDK, glad you got your SSK barrel up and running. Sounds like you should have a great deer/elk or what ever hammer. The 358JDJ is one I never got around to purchasing. Tried to get a couple on sites but it didn't work out. I'm happy with my .375JDJ shooting 220 & 235 grain flat nose bullets.
On another note we spoke about. I got my 6.5JDJ Contender barrel back from SSK. No notes, nothing. I sent some brass that had been shot from this barrel and it looked to be sized. SO, I call them. Talked to the guy that got my barrel. He said that over time, making barrels that some reamers cut different. He didn't see that .002 larger chamber was an issue. BS!. I asked him how he sized the cases. He said that my dies, I had sent had a little rust in them. BS! I had cleaned them with steel wool before sending them due to expecting them to say that. He said he ran the cases through the dies with NO problem.
Now I'm starting see the writing on the wall. I asked him what about the Brand New Hornady Custom dies I had just purchased from him for $100.00. What am I supposed to do with them. I got a load of crap but they finally agreed to take them back.
I took the barrel out, without scope or sites and fired 10 rounds to get some fired brass to try in the "Cleaned UP Dies". Not a one of them would size, without doing the 1/8" steps running them into the die just as they had before. BS! I even tried sizing with one stroke and pulled the case rim off in the shell holder twice before my brain said this was no good. I was about ready to cut the barrel up and take my loss. I had a little light come on, dim but it did come on in my head.
I called Hornady and talked with the guys that makes the JDJ dies. He said he was sorry and that the only solution he could come up with is he could make me a custom sizing die, for $150.00 for my fired cases so I could use the "CUSTOM" barrel. Now we are getting somewhere! Right?
I'm waiting on the refund after sending the new, unused dies back to SSK. I have fired 10 more rounds and have them boxed up to send to Hornady to send them to Hornady for a custom Sizing die that will be zipped tied to this barrel forever so that whoever would get it after me, could shoot and load for it and have fun!
I'm a little upset with this issue but I got the barrel second or third hand, who knows how many owned it and couldn't load for it. If it had been new, I would have gotten a full refund and went on my way. If this barrel didn't shoot lights out for me at any distance, after killing many deer, some hogs and varmints it would be sold for some of the guys that are stubbing the barrels and making a new caliber barrel, or a tent stake.
I'm rambling now but you asked to hear what happened with this barrel. There is the story. Just waiting on my Custom Die now.
You don't quit playing because you get old, You get old because you quit playing.