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Old 12-27-2012, 11:17 PM   #1
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Default Reloading advice

I was up in Georgia over Christmas and talked to a good friend from high school who has a nice reloading set up in his garage. He gave me a hand primer and a uniflow powder measure tool to get started. I know I need a single stage press but not sure where to start. He had a multistage set up as well as a single stage...I don't shoot thousands of rounds a day but would like to start saving on the shots I do take and always enjoy learning how to be self sufficient so I thought I would give reloading a try. What else do I need/what brands would be best? The two pieces he gave me were RCBS which I think are decently made from what I can tell. Also is there a particular website for beginners tips that anyone would recommend? Thanks for any tips and advice. I was gonna set up a work bench in my tool shed for now to get ready for the 2nd ammendment apocalypse...
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Old 12-28-2012, 12:07 AM   #2
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Rcbs is my favorite. You will need some scales. I use the Rcbs auto feeder and electronic scales combined. Saves a lot of time. An excellent web site is AR15. All subjects are covered. Also buy a reloading manual as you will need one. Speer makes a good one.
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Old 12-28-2012, 12:38 AM   #3
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Since you already have a hand primer and a powder flow measure then get a RCBS rock chucker reloader special starter kit.
https://shop.rcbs.com/WebConnect/Mai...&route=C04J148

You'll also want a case trimmer so you can trim all cases to the same exact length.

A set of allen wrenches.

Powder trickler.

Calipers to measure case length, and overall length of the cartridges.

Primer pocket cleaner.

Flash hole deburing tool. Not a necessity though useful.

Bullet puller. You'll eventually need it cause you forgot to dump powder or prime a case.

Stuck case remover for when you get a case stuck in a die.

Obviously, dies and shell holders for the cartridges you will be loading for.

Though not needed, a case tumbler is nice to have to clean a bunch of brass all at once.

There are other things you might want in the future if you get real serious, but this is everything you will need to start reloading good, accurate hunting ammunition.
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Old 12-28-2012, 09:00 AM   #4
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A few months ago I looked at starting up reloading and after doing the math, I just didn't see a big savings. But I would be doing mostly 9mm and a few .38s. It looked to me like the big savings would be in the larger calibers like .357, .44 and rifle calibers.
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Old 12-28-2012, 03:48 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by welldoya View Post
A few months ago I looked at starting up reloading and after doing the math, I just didn't see a big savings. But I would be doing mostly 9mm and a few .38s. It looked to me like the big savings would be in the larger calibers like .357, .44 and rifle calibers.
Yeah, it depends on how much you shoot and even more so, what you shoot. I have a .338 ultra mag that runs $70 - $100 per box. Just with that cartridge alone a person could justify the cost of getting set up with about 5 or 6 boxes at retail prices. If I don't reload for that cartridge it don't get shot.
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Old 12-28-2012, 04:53 PM   #6
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I started with a 310 hand tong tool and a hammer and metal rod resizer and made 243 cases out of military 308. Shot great. All I had was the 310 tool, a scoop, a powder funnel and a scale and though it was slow, it worked. I also did a bunch of 357 and 38 special.
If you are reloading cases fired out of the rifle you are reloading for, which I'm doing for 308, 6BRX and 7MM Rem MAG, I'd recommend you start off with something basic, the Lee hand press, and then move up to a bench press if you get "hooked". I use mine in stages. First I'll neck size and deprime and prime as much brass as I have laying around. Then, I can drop in the powder and seat bullets when I want, all in the comfort of the same chair I'm typing this from. In fact, when I need brass resized, I have a Lyman turret set up in the garage and will size and deprime a bunch and do the rest in my "easy chair".
You can get some Lee dies very reasonably and neck size. I have used powder drippers but now just set some powder in a small container and drip with a small spoon to get the weight right. I do that even when using a high $ bench rest measure. Lee dies come with a scoop that will get you in the ball park plus, you get the case holder for the press.

A scale is a must.

As far as primer seating, you have what I like best except when I have problems with seating depth (7mm Mag) and I use the Lee primer seater set on top of my hand press.
I have a couple of progressive presses (Dillons but, just use them for pistol ammo).
As far as saving $, I'm shooting my 40 and 45 for probably less than $2 a box (50). I started casting pistol bullets from wheel weights when I had my 310 tool (NAS Pensacola circa 1966) and now, with the 6 cavity Lee mold, the liquid Alox and Lee sizer, I have all the bullets (always the most expensive component) I can use.
While you still can, cruise sites like Midsouth for good deals on primers and powder and go in with some buds to cover hazmat. The price differences in cost of components is significant.

You will be surprised at what you can save. Maybe not so much if you are shooting a 308 or 3006 and buy the basic ammo at Wmart but, when you go to rounds like those previously mentioned, the savings are significant.
All that being said, a good bench press can be invaluable. The Rockchucker has been around a long time but, there probably isn't a bad single stage press out there. I'd stay away from old Herter's presses though which I think require special shell holders.
Just checked Ebay and looks like the cheapest Rockchucker is going for $100.
I have a Forster case trimmer but, after a lot of reading, got the drill mounted Lee and it is great. I trimmed a bunch of 243 brass to make 308 and it was a dream compared to the much more expensive Forster.
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Old 12-28-2012, 08:39 PM   #7
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Can't go wrong with RCBS or Lee. I have both and they work great. Like it was said before, get the basics and a good manual and you'll be good to go. I do save a litttle by reloading but consistancy and accuracy is where its at
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Old 12-28-2012, 10:22 PM   #8
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Default Rcbs

I personally use RCBS, no complaints so far!
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