So I'm going to start reloading...

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by idleprocess, Feb 29, 2008.

  1. idleprocess

    idleprocess Active Member

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    The price of .223 has gotten me off my lazy, mostly-consumerist rear end and I've ordered a kit. What else do I need? The kit comes with the progressive press, dies for .223, powder dispenser, primer feed, etc.

    I imagine that I'll need some extras, like...
    • Case sizer
    • Scale
    • Brass tumbler (I hear mixed things on these - some say it's not necessary, others insist that you should always clean brass)
    • Reloading manual(s)
    • Consumables (Been stockpiling brass, ordered primers, need to find powder and bullets)
    • Bench (working on that)
     


  2. XTPHP1

    XTPHP1 New Member

    I hope you got a progressive. Nothing is worse than a single stage if you plan to do any type of volume reloading.

    Get an electronic scale. Get the brass tumbler, might as well go big and get the big Dillon one. It's not necessary, but as your cases get dirtier you'll want it. One day you'll need it. Get as many reloading manuals as you can. They are great references.

    Gun shows are the best place to get powders and primers. You'll save on the hazmat fee.

     
  3. MrKimber44

    MrKimber44 Member

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    I disagree about the progressive. If you don't have any reloading experience(don't know if you do or not) jumping into a progressive is a lot to watch. The old rock chucker is great at getting the feel for what you are doing. One thing going on at a time mean all your attention goes into that one thing. Sure, you give up speed, but you know you didn't miss anything. Then switch to the progressive down the road. Just my 2 cents.

    Oh, and you might as well go ahead and get a nice set of calipers.
     
  4. idleprocess

    idleprocess Active Member

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    I have no reloading experience.

    I purchased an inexpensive progressive and will probably be running a single round at a time through it until I get the hang of it.

    Whenever I buy a precision rifle, I may well get a manual press since bolt guns don't chew through ammo as fast as an AR-15 or the average pistol.
     
  5. XTPHP1

    XTPHP1 New Member

    I think buying a single stage is a waste of money for volume reloading. Just as the OP has intended to run one round at a time in a progressive is the best way to learn. Reloading isn't like building a space ship. Its a few steps that simple awareness is all one needs. 100 rounds of .270 on a single stage will take 2-3 hours. 100 rounds of .270 on a progressive will take 10-15 min.

    When I first started reloading I got a Lyman single stage for my .270, and a Lee Pro 1000 for 9mm. I did about 200 rounds of the .270. I've never loaded .270 since. The 9mm I've worn out 3 Lee Pro 1000's of the years and now have two Dillon 550's. I still have that single stage and always recommend a progressive over a single stage. The only single I'll load now is 50 BMG, just cause I can't find a progressive loader for it.

    I think single stage is the way to run someone off of reloading because of the agonizing time it takes to get a result, and you end up with more stuff you don't use.

    I only know a few absolutely anal reloaders that single stage. They weigh each case before resizing:eek: and weigh every charge:eek:. Talk about hours. True they may group better at 1000 yards, but that half inch tighter group at 1000 yards just ain't worth it to me. I'd rather crank out 1000 rounds and have more fun shooting, but thats just me.

    Everyone who gets a single stage always ends up with a progressive. So I think a single stage is a waste of money of your in it to save money reloading but you want to increase or maintain your current volume of shooting.

    I look at it like shooting. Why buy a revolver if you know you want a semi, and plan to shoot, and carry a semi anyway? If you want a revolver later great, but for a beginner a semi is just as good and you can always get training on the semi. Some shops offer reloading classes. YMMV.
     
  6. MrKimber44

    MrKimber44 Member

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    Different Strokes I guess. I'm not argueing about the volume of rounds progressives put out as opposed to a single stage. I guess I'm just a little anal. :o Running them through one at a time does sound like a good idea though.


    No space ships, just an explosion 3 inches from your face.
     
  7. idleprocess

    idleprocess Active Member

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    I am ever mindful of that possibility.

    From what I'm reading, primers seem to be a bigger safety hazard than powder.
     
  8. XTPHP1

    XTPHP1 New Member

    I've never had a primer explode, not that it can't happen. If you have slow deliberate strokes and don't slam the press when seating a primer, you should be good to go. I've crushed plenty of primers with no effect. But if you snapped it against the press you would probably get an explosion.

     
  9. idleprocess

    idleprocess Active Member

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    Press has arrived, with broken parts. And there are some not-so-obvious aspects to its operation. Oh well. This seems to be a given with Lee.

    I need to fully prep the workbench anyway.
     
  10. machinisttx

    machinisttx Member

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    I have three single stage presses set up, with a fourth laying in a cabinet because I needed bench space, and a lee hand press for sitting in front of the TV and depriming/resizing. I also have a Dillon XL650 and two single stage shotgun presses set up.

    IMO, you can't go wrong with a good single stage press. They're a lot more convenient AND faster to set up and use when you're just loading a few rounds(load development or stuff you don't shoot much).

    I shoot a lot of .38 special/.357 mag and .45 Colt. I'll set the Dillon up when I need to crank out a few hundred rounds of a known good load. If I'm trying to find a good load, I'm not going to constantly fiddle with the seating die/powder measure/crimp die/etc. in the progressive since I'll only load maybe 20 rounds before I change it again. Ditto for my low use stuff like 22-250 or hunting loads for .308 that I only load for maybe once every couple years.
     

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