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Thread: Handloaders Getting Nailed!

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    Member DanAKAL's Avatar
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    Default Handloaders Getting Nailed!

    Usually when someone asks me about embarking on the addiction and/or affliction of handloading I steer them towards manuals such as Lyman's 49th. After the last few weeks I have had cause to reexamine what I use as my initial recommendation for a manual. Like many I started loading on a work bench in my garage. Soon I learned that I needed a dedicated loading bench. Knowing that I probably couldn't buy anything that I really wanted I resolved to build my bench. This lead to a search for what I thought I needed and I built the biggesdt, badest, most tricked out bench I could find. This worked for awhile but then I needed more room for more stuff and built another bench/benches. This helped greatly but then like everything else I wanted more. Fast forward to today and I am now about halfway through a winter long remodel project in my entire garage! This will be very nice when I'm done but I now wonder how long it will be before I am adding on to my garage for even more room and subsequent loading benches!

    Therefore, my first recommendation for anyone starting out handloading will be a book on carpentry. Once the basic skills of carpentry are firmly seated then, and only then, should anyone proceed with learning the finer aspects of assembling ammunition. This would probably be a good book to start with.

    http://www.amazon.com/Woodworking-Ba...739687-9849035

    Dan

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    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    Lol!! I realize that I will enjoy reloading a great deal and just didn't have the space. So far I have about 60k invested in the endeavor and haven't produced a round... So much for this "saving money".

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    What a timely post! I have been wanting to start reloading and was planning on starting soon...I guess I should wait until I get my dream house/shop/garage before starting! Y'all crack me up.
    BEE

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    Quote Originally Posted by LuJon View Post
    Lol!! I realize that I will enjoy reloading a great deal and just didn't have the space. So far I have about 60k invested in the endeavor and haven't produced a round... So much for this "saving money".
    yeah, reloading experiences...Kind of like spending 50k versus 30k on a truck (for better gas mileage) so one can reap the awards at the pump.

    I'm having trouble visualizing what a 60k investment in reloading supplies would look like.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wet eNuf View Post
    yeah, reloading experiences...Kind of like spending 50k versus 30k on a truck (for better gas mileage) so one can reap the awards at the pump.

    I'm having trouble visualizing what a 60k investment in reloading supplies would look like.
    So am I as it must fill the whole house, I think I have around 6K and I have a heck of a lot of stuff including 2 progressive presses now.

    You donít need to build an assembly line factory and warehouse complete with loading docks for 18 wheelers to load up some ammo guys. I did it for years on the kitchen table, still got a little C press setup in my camper and it is enough to make good ammo. Heck I used an old Pasfic hand press while watching TV from my recliner to load 38s for years too. All that time your building you could be makin ammo . . . just put down the hammer and do some loading already!
    Andy
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    Member Vince's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wet eNuf View Post
    yeah, reloading experiences...Kind of like spending 50k versus 30k on a truck (for better gas mileage) so one can reap the awards at the pump.

    I'm having trouble visualizing what a 60k investment in reloading supplies would look like.
    LOL i have seen the pics of progress.. i would have to agree with the ~60K... though i bet he is a little more then that when complete...
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

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    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wet eNuf View Post
    yeah, reloading experiences...Kind of like spending 50k versus 30k on a truck (for better gas mileage) so one can reap the awards at the pump.

    I'm having trouble visualizing what a 60k investment in reloading supplies would look like.
    Looks just like this:










    1350sf all with hydronic in floor heating. Admittedly it also serves as a place to store and work on wheelers, sleds and other projects but the reloading area was a major focus!

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    Member DanAKAL's Avatar
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    Lujon you have a good start there. 1350 sqft will get you going in your loading endeavours, for a few years anyway. Make sure you include space for the 25 sqft or so refigerator and 15 sqft for the sound system. I don't know how I ever got a round loaded without those two. But then again that was when I was just starting and didn't know any different. Seems you and I are proving once again that it doesn't hurt when you hit your finger with a hammer. Three minutes later when you hit the same finger is when it HURTS!

    Looking at your pics make sure you have shelves/cabinets all the way up to the ceiling. You'll be surprised how much single purpose stuff you will accumulate. The things you use only once in awhile but if you don't have them loading can be difficult.

    Dan

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    Member JOAT's Avatar
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    Or... just get a Dillion Press and you can have your entire 'assembly' line setup in about 25 square feet of office space.
    Winter is Coming...

    Go GeocacheAlaska!

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    Member DanAKAL's Avatar
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    JOAT you're not thinking quite big enough. After a few years of changing out those pesky die plates, shell holders, and powder measures you get a press for each gauge and caliber. That way you can set it once and load forever!!!

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    Member JOAT's Avatar
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    I never had a problem with switching plates. You can fit a lot of already-setup plates along a sturdy shelf high on the wall and well out of the way. Then with a U-Shaped work area, you can have 3 different presses side-by-side on one bench (Mec shotgun, Dillion progressive, and a bullet-proof single stage of your choice), most all your storage from floor to ceiling in the center, and your tinker-table with scales, tricklers, measures, primer stuff, lube stuff, etc on the final side. When sitting at the press, everything you can possibly do is within arm's reach of a spinning barstool type chair.

    By doing this, you leave enough room to have your fly tying station, general workbench areas, and other "man cave" garage luxuries all within the footprint of one garage bay.
    Winter is Coming...

    Go GeocacheAlaska!

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    Yup just like Joat says it doesnít require warehouse space to have a very adequate and useful reloading space. It would be nice to have a huge space like that just like it would be to have a 10,000 square foot house but I do just fine living in 2100 foot including a reloading space in my gun room.

    Oh and BTW LuJon the building itself doesnít count as part of the $60K in reloading equipment but that is a very nice shop your building there.
    Andy
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    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    The shop has been a dream since I was a kid working on my DS80 dirt bike over the winter on a freezing cold floor dodging snow melt puddles as they ran off moms car. Some 20+ years later I was able to make it happen. I have the foundation for my L shaped bench built, it is 14.5' on the long side and 10.5 on the short. I picked up some take-out cabinets that I am working over and slowly installing. The FIL is also redoing his kitchen and I will be getting a few more from him. The reloading room will also serve as a place for cleaning guns etc. I am tired of dragging all my stuff out to the kitchen and enduring dirty looks from the wife when wipeout spills on her table!

    I have space for a fridge set aside and have been laying out the reloading area. I plan on adding a fold down wall mounted table for extra work space and a bin rack soon. At this point things are budgeted piece be piece and I still have industrial racks to buy as well as a compressor that will be plumbed in with several regulators.

    So far my shop is my personal paradise, everything is layer out exactly how I wanted it. Heck I even thought ahead and installed a floor drain, deep basin muck sink and an indoor hose bib. Amazing how handy a hose bib inside the shop is! Actual reloading gear is mostly RCBS with a hornady lock n load conversion. I will probably move to a turret at some point but for now I will predominantly be doing load workup for my hunting rifles and the setup I have now will work great for that.

    As to the original post, yes swinging a hammer and running saws has been the biggest skill I have needed so far! I even learned how to run a mini excavator to dig the trench for the gas and electric lines. Even better is I had time on the meter to clear out an archery range in the back with a safe backstop. 30 yards from the shops back porch with room to take it out to 60 from the back yard if I ever need to. Only downfall with it all is that the wife wants me to plant grass on all the torn up ground next year which means I have more mowing to do.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LuJon View Post
    .................................................. .

    I have space for a fridge set aside and have been laying out the reloading area. I plan on adding a fold down wall mounted table for extra work space and a bin rack soon. At this point things are budgeted piece be piece and I still have industrial racks to buy as well as a compressor that will be plumbed in with several regulators.

    So far my shop is my personal paradise, everything is layer out exactly how I wanted it. Heck I even thought ahead and installed a floor drain, deep basin muck sink and an indoor hose bib. Amazing how handy a hose bib inside the shop is!..................................
    After spending all that on your shop/reloading area, you might as well make room for a cot, ......................just in case...........:-).
    "The older I get, the better I was."

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    Member AKHunterNP's Avatar
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    My wife stole a corner of my reloading room for her computer desk, which expanded into a sewing table too. I finally had to buy her a small computer desk and stuck her out in the living room.
    "...arms like laws discourage and keep the invader and plunderer in awe...Horrid mischief would ensue were the good deprived of the use of them." -Thomas Paine

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    Member Vince's Avatar
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    I am thinking NOW i need to redo my bench... sheesh.. thanks guys. i took the easy way out when we moved in here last fall.. and got two 3 drawer shop cabnets and put 2x10 and ply wood over them for a measly 6 foot...

    now i am going to have to move the boiler, 3 freezers, and 2 shelf units and find somplace else to park her car...

    THANKS A LOT!

    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

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    Member JOAT's Avatar
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    Cars are designed to be outside.
    Winter is Coming...

    Go GeocacheAlaska!

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    That reminds me, I forgot to wash mine last year.
    When seconds count, the cops are just minutes away.
    '08 24' HCM Granite HD "River Dog"

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    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Music Man View Post
    That reminds me, I forgot to wash mine last year.
    People wash cars? I am not even sure what color mine are anymore!

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    Quote Originally Posted by AKHunterNP View Post
    My wife stole a corner of my reloading room for her computer desk, which expanded into a sewing table too. I finally had to buy her a small computer desk and stuck her out in the living room.
    Mine did that so I bought her a laptop, problem fixed. Now she is getting into this scrap booking stuff, boy does that take up room . . . any ideas guys?
    Andy
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