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  • getting reloaded... new vs used....lots of questions

    I have been watching, reading, pricing, shopping, looking, reading, listening some more...

    i still don't have a spot to set up the equipment but i decided i should buy it while it is readily avalible...

    i know every one has their personal prefs, but i would like a list of must have and nice to haves and what have you found is junk...


    i am looking at Rcbs... pretty sure it is hard to go wrong with it.. to start with a single stage press. and have ordered dies for most of my Cal's in stock... i have been trying to Ebay a bunch of it but the prices seems to be at or above new..people are crazy on there..

    Dillon products seem to be be high in demand and high dollar so i am staying away from those completely..

    does... lee, redding, rcbs, hornady dies. all interchange? out side of components of the presses?

    powder measure vs trickler?

    balance scale vs digital?

    and what are the parts i will be looking for that are not in the kits?


    On the dies.. neck sizing? full size? both? some sets are two pieces some are 3. like the 45-70 comes in three. what is your take on used dies?




    i haven't even started on the hand gun stuff yet...
    "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."

    meet on face book here

  • #2
    Modern

    Nearly all modern dies have a 7/8"x14 thread and will fit modern presses. The older stuff like C-H, Lyman 310, Herters may not fit a modern press.
    If you're not going to be loading a lot of ammo for any rifle caliber Lee dies are affordable and produce quality ammo. For pistol ammo a carbide die works better as it doesn't require lubrication, doesn't scratch brass, and lasts forever.
    Use small base dies for semi-auto rifles, buy full length rifle dies and back them up to neck size, this way you only need one set of dies for each rifle caliber.

    As far as used dies; I'll just buy a set of new Lee before I'll take a chance on buying a scratched
    or rusty RCBS or other brand die, unless it's carbide.

    Comment


    • #3
      Good quesions

      Welcome to the forum and welcome to your new obsession.

      What kind of shooting to you do? Are you mechanically adept or inept? What prompts you to reload? Economy? The search for power? The quest for ultimate accuracy? Independence (from retailers or ammomakers)? The wider selection of bullets available for the handloader? The answers you give will enable your advisors to target their answers better.

      Originally posted by Vince View Post
      I have been watching, reading, pricing, shopping, looking, reading, listening some more...
      What have you been reading? ABC's of Reloading is good. The early chapters of almost any reloading manual are devoted to the "how to" of reloading. Get several (borrow if you like, age does not matter). The different manuals all have different writing styles and some may "speak" to you better than others, and each set of editors/author will treat different aspects of the loading process with more or less emphasis than another set of editors or author.

      Originally posted by Vince View Post
      i still don't have a spot to set up the equipment
      When I started reloading (30+ years), everything I used would fit in a footlocker. I used to load in the living room with my press mounted on a 2x6 board, which was wedged in the drawer of an end table. My RCBS Rock Chucker is mounted on that very same board, but now it goes on a folding workbench in the laundry room. Setup time is 5-6 minutes.
      Originally posted by Vince View Post
      but i decided i should buy it while it is readily avalible...
      Sorry, I think you missed that boat unless you get lucky. Later this Spring probably
      Originally posted by Vince View Post
      i know every one has their personal prefs, but i would like a list of must have and nice to haves and what have you found is junk...

      i am looking at Rcbs... pretty sure it is hard to go wrong with it.. to start with a single stage press. and have ordered dies for most of my Cal's in stock... i have been trying to Ebay a bunch of it but the prices seems to be at or above new..people are crazy on there..
      I posted a list I have been working on... "The Minimum Requirments" The draft is still rough, but at least workable.

      http://www.rugerforum.com/phpBB/view...=505183#505183
      or if the link does not work, paste this into your web browser
      rugerforum.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?p=505183#505183

      Also, check out my post ("10 Advices for....") on this thread (read the whole thread, not just my post. It is meant for the new reloader and permanently at the top of its section of the RugerForum.com)

      http://www.rugerforum.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=13543
      or if the link does not work, paste this into your web browser
      rugerforum.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=13543

      Originally posted by Vince View Post
      Dillon products seem to be be high in demand and high dollar so i am staying away from those completely..

      does... lee, redding, rcbs, hornady dies. all interchange? out side of components of the presses?

      powder measure vs trickler?
      I used to use a powder measure. It took too much attention and saved only a little time over using the Lee Powder Scoops. (under $15). When I wand to be very accurate, I scoop into the scale's pan and then trickle up to weight. (The whole weight vs volume debate we can address later. Right now it is a distraction.)
      Originally posted by Vince View Post
      balance scale vs digital?
      Balance Scale. If you want electronic/digital, sure, add one. But always keep a good, mechanical scale. I have read testimony that some of the less expensive electronic scales can be affected by flourescent lights. To be fair, four or five feet distance seems to take care of it, but why borrow trouble when it is more expensive anyway?

      If you find that you will be better served by an e-scale, you can get one later.
      Originally posted by Vince View Post
      and what are the parts i will be looking for that are not in the kits?
      Virtually all kits are sold without the dies and shell holder. Whether you call that "missing" or not is up to you. It is standard practice.
      What else is missing depends on the kit, of course. But most kits are missing:
      Stuck Case puller (some people go their entire lives without a stuck case, but if you get one, you are done reloading until you remove the damaged case from the die in which it is stuck)
      Bullet Puller (inertial type is cheap. Collet type is faster. I never needed one for 30 years until I was using a progressive press with a powder measure that I let go empty just last year. So, my 30 year old brand new bullet puller got used for the first time.)
      Case Lube (May or may not be included in the kit.)
      Cleaning supplies/Maintenance Supplies (stuff like machine oil for the linkage and cleaning rags, things most people have in their tool kit.)
      Primer flipper tray may or may not be included.
      Powder Trickler may or may not be included
      Micrometer/Case Length Gauge/Chamfer tool/Case Trimmer/Primer Pocket Reamer/Primer Pocket Cleaner may or may not be included.
      Handloading is a gadget lovers dream(nightmare?). There is ALWAYS something else.
      Safety Glasses! Always wear safety glasses, especially when working with primers! I put it last not as an afterthought, but for emphasis.

      If you like shiny brass, a vibratory or tumbling brass cleanter, too.
      Originally posted by Vince View Post
      On the dies.. neck sizing? full size? both? some sets are two pieces some are 3. like the 45-70 comes in three. what is your take on used dies?
      I don't load bottlenecked cartridges, sorry. My failing.

      Used Dies? If I got to inspect them before buying, sure. If buying remotely, I would figure what I would pay for the purchase if the dies were not in the deal. If they are good when they arrive, that's a bonus. Of course, if the photographs of the equipment show a well-maintained setup, I might relax a little, but not much.
      Originally posted by Vince View Post
      i haven't even started on the hand gun stuff yet...
      Tungsten carbide (or the newer, with which I have no experience yet, titanium nitride) do not require lubrication. A major time savings for the loader of straight-walled cases (mostly pistol, but some rifle, I am told).


      Lost Sheep
      Remember, only believe half of what you see and one quarter of what you hear. That goes double for what you get from the internet. Even this post.

      Do your own independent, confirming research when ANYONE gives you new facts on the web.

      Also remember, even the idiotic stuff might have a kernel of truth buried in there somewhere.

      Comment


      • #4
        well i am supposed to be out on the side of a mountain today...but I am not....

        thanks for the answers...

        first Lost sheep, LOL not so new to the forum... just reloading, having equipment in the living room is NOT an option in our home. we area family of 7 in ~800 sq ft with a Interlock business in here to... the ages of the 5 kids are 14mo-13 years.

        i am a hunter and so are the kids. at 63.00 a box for my 300 ammo and 3 kids all shooting all summer it is getting expensive.

        CZ in AK here in Fairbanks has offered to show me the ropes and help get some ammo made. and i have gotten the necessary things to complete task one of this process.


        I am more then mechanically inclined, and have an Engineering deg. with a emph. in safety management and design.. not to mention also own a construction co..Builiding log homes.

        i am not looking for the most speed out of my rifle.. i just want things to fall over dead when i ask it to do so. and be able to keep the kids shooting as they like too.

        the equipment is more then available at this time though i am watching used prices go up every day.

        i have gotten ordered through Sergei. 4 lbs of powder. have 3 boxes of primers.. gotten the 270 dies ordered that CZ does not have... as well dies for the 300 and 7mm, and 45-70... i have also secured a RC BS single stage press. and am trying to pick up the other necessity's as i go along.. I don't feel that i will need a progressive press as i don't get in a hurry doing things for myself. and prefer to take my time... my clients all ask me to hurry. so my time is my relax moment. it will be some time before i can piece it all together so i am doing more home work here....


        I have gathered every one has their methods and means... and some vary different then others.. as a contractor i understand every one tasks differently then the person next to them and as long as the finel product is the same that is what matters to me.

        i wish to do it safely for the concern of the kids with powders and such on hand and do have a safe to lock them in... but no place to set it up... SAFELY... and running a business with now 9 office across the state.. well money at the moment is ALWAYS a consern...

        THANKS!!
        "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."

        meet on face book here

        Comment


        • #5
          If you have a kitchen table, a 2X6, and a Sunday afternoon it's not hard to put out a couple hundred good rounds. Get an RCBS Rock Crusher or a like press and bolt it to the end of the 2X6. Cover the bottom of the 2X6 with something soft to save the table top and clamp it to the table. When not loading put it in the rafters or other out of the wayplace. All your tools can be mounted to the 2X6 if you like so it's fast to set up and take down.

          You can start with a Lee scale thatís around $30 but you will want a backup if you do pistol loads, one to check the other on the small charges. You don't need much to start making some very good ammo, I started with a press that looked like a pair of fence pliers sitting on a couch.
          Andy
          On the web= C-lazy-F.co
          Email= Andy@C-lazy-F.co
          Call/Text 602-315-2406
          Phoenix Arizona

          Comment


          • #6
            I usually recommend to bite the "bullet" up front and buy a kit that includes a balance beam scale and single stage O frame press. I believe that you are money ahead buying a kit and then adding things as you want them. Sure the intial investment $$$ is more up front than trying to do it one piece at a time but in the long run you will have less invested in the kit than the individual purchases. Not to mention you will have all new equipment. Hard to go wrong with RCBS, Lyman, Hornady, Redding, and some others. I have no experience with Lee equipment but I suppose it is good stuff. Lee has a following of loyal users. I do not recommend an electronic scale without having a balance beam to back it up. I have had some bad experiences with digital scales but still use them. Welcome to the addiction!

            Dan

            Comment


            • #7
              Minimum; Press, dies, lube and shell holder. If you get lee dies they come with a powder scoop that works but not for the most accurate or high powered loads. For that you need to add a good scale. After loading a case a few times you will need a way to measure it for length and trim it. A caliper and a case trimmer. Lee again makes a trimmer that works without measuring and is cheap. About $10 for first caliber and about $5 for each added caliber. Lee dies also come with a shell holder. This will not produce the best ammo in the world, but it's fairly inexpensive. It's also slow compared to nicer equiptment. I would start with the press,dies, scale, shellholder or a lee shellholder set that has almost all normal holders for one low price and a good lube. Everyone has there own favorite case lube, but no one i've ever heard of has stuck a case using imperial sizeing wax. You can spend a fortune on the little extras that make life easier or faster. Some of it you can make yourself like powder dippers from old cases. Oh, before I forget, get at very least one good reloading manual and two or three won't hurt.

              Comment


              • #8
                Small Base Dies. Don't know, maybe they are needed. I load for M1 Garands, M14 style rifles, AR's, and a Mini 14 (Lord, please forgive me, I had a weak moment.). I use standard sizer dies with all and have never had a problem.

                Comment


                • #9
                  If you are in Fairbanks and want to come by my place, you're welcome to look over my equipment and discuss the uses and costs and weigh the pros & cons. I will be leaving town Friday morning for a few days (miss the gun show) and if not in a hurry you could come after I'm home. It will take along time to go over all the different tools and the need or nice to have stuff. Larry gave a nice break down of stuff and there is a lots to it but the process is quite simple. As an added bonus for putting up with me you may be the lucky camper to receive lots of free stuff, powder, primers, extra die parts, etc. I have a lot of stuff I plan to sell at a moving sale or give away. There will be lots of bargains in the selling. That will take place in June I think. I'll be leaving this wilderness this summer and can't take it all with me. Anyway you could look over equipment and get a lesson in its use.
                  Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?


                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Thanks Murph, i would love to learn more... i shot you a PM with my number on it. my schedule is fairly open if you dont mind a little one around for a bit..
                    "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."

                    meet on face book here

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Reloading bench idea

                      I completely understand your tight living spaces, reloading is still very doable. My reloading bench is a 16x24" table made out of 1" steel tubeing and angle iron, I picked it up at a yard sale, it has a shelf underneath to store equipment and 3/4" plywood top. I then drilled holes in the plywood to attach my powder measure stand and case trimmer. I use wing nuts to aid in easy set up with less tools. You can then store your components and dies in a lockable Rubbermaid container, and stack on the bench when not in use. This was my set up when I lived in a very small one bedroom apartment, it worked good so I still use it in my house. Have fun and be safe.
                      LIVE TO HUNT....HUNT TO LIVE!!!!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        i am thinking that after i get my enclosed Job trailer back..( her office stuff is in it) i will be able to use the work bench in there at least during the summer months.. it does have propane heat. but???? open flames and gun powder???? for some reason the hair stands up...

                        i can see a new room on the cabin in clear.......
                        "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."

                        meet on face book here

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          okay so I FINALLY, got a break from day care daddy, and business, and i got to go out and shoot some of the hand loads CZ in AK helped me make...

                          180 grn noslers ballistic tip 300 win mag

                          as directed i started with the lowest set at 73 gn... IMR 7828...

                          there is a huge difference in recoil between 73 and 75gn....


                          so here is my question..


                          even though the lower gn is not the one the rifle likes the best.. is it worth giving up a little accuracy for comfort when teaching/letting practice, wifes and kids to shoot..? i know the boy is all about hitting bulls and accuracy but every one would be in a kill zone any way.... so as i learn more and get to making their loads, should i keep them light and grow up to the perfect load or make them accurate and teach them to handle the recoil?



                          CZ, no issues yet!!!!
                          "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."

                          meet on face book here

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Use a paper plate the size of the kill zone you're comfortable with, instead of a traditional target. When your son hits the plate, tell him "That's one dead moose!"
                            I may be slow, but I get where I'm going!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I agree, keep it light and let him ask for more power. Last thing you want is to get him flinching.
                              Andy
                              On the web= C-lazy-F.co
                              Email= Andy@C-lazy-F.co
                              Call/Text 602-315-2406
                              Phoenix Arizona

                              Comment

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