starting reloading

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by Guest, Feb 24, 2003.

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    cruiser348
    Member
    Posts: 1
    (1/16/03 2:50:43 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del All starting reloading
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    I've decided it's time for me to get started in reloading. I picked up Hodgdon's Annual Reloading Manual at my local bookstore, and while I was very thankful for the amount of information it contained I noticed one thing lacking. Nowhere in it does it mention what all is required to get started in reloading rifle and pistol ammunition (primarily rifle ammunition in my case). I saw that Lee offers an "Anniversary Reloading Kit" at a very reasonable price and I was wondering if this contained everything, short of brass, bullets, primers, and powder, that I will need to get started. If not what else do I need to get started?

    1badassmagnum
    Member
    Posts: 44
    (1/16/03 5:51:40 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del check out rcbs guide
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    rcbs has a guide with photos,very well done.besides the press or master kit you will need a shell holder the correct size to hold your case in position$5.dial calipers for measuring $20.set of dies for each caliber $40.trimmer pilot for guiding your case trimmer head $5.most everything comes with the kit,just a few extras needed for some certain calibers.midway usa has the absolute lowest prices,the rcbs rock chucker kit is $229,and can be converted to progressive later.

    Zigzag2
    *TFF Senior Staff*
    Posts: 5248
    (1/16/03 7:47:15 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: check out rcbs guide
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    Hello Crusier and welcome to The Firearms Forum.

    Take a look at the "Dillon" line of reloading equipment. Top of the line stuff with a great warranty and the friendliest staff I've ever dealt with.

    dillonprecision.com/default.cfm?



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    "Tell the gossipers and liars I will see them in the fire" - Johnny Cash, Let the train whistle blow
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    ZiggedandZagged@aol.com



    WyomingSwede
    *TFF Senior Staff*
    Posts: 681
    (1/16/03 7:50:05 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: check out www.midwayusa.com
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    1Bad has the right idea. I use pretty much Lee and RCBS for my reloading equipment. I started out with the Lee starter kit, the RCBS kit is a little higher priced. Both are good.
    Hodgedon makes a good manual, as does Sierra and Hornady. AS a new reloader I would reccommend the Hornady manual as it has a fairly detailed section on starting out. Its two volumes and kinda spendy but its a good one.
    It seems like you see more RCBS loading equipment out west versus Lee further east. RCBS is headquartered in Lewiston ID and Lee somewher in WI. Both have customer service # to call for questions and they are nice people. It is the wrong time of year, but you can pick up used reloading equipment at garage sales dirt cheap. I picked up an unused set of titanium .357 dies for two bucks.(normally $25)
    Just have to know a little bit on what you want.
    And we in this forum will always help out with any questions too. Good luck with your start in reloading.


    swede
    Wyoming Swede

    MTaylor
    Member
    Posts: 27
    (1/16/03 9:31:16 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: starting reloading
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    Just like buying a new car, reloading equipment also has many options. Most of the "kits" will have all the basics. As you learn and progress you will want to add the various options. Some may even be necessary when loading certain cartridges.

    Before you buy start browsing the manufacturers web page and looking at the options. Most of them will have a brief description about it and why it may be necessary.






    rayra
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 446
    (1/17/03 5:49:13 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: starting reloading
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    At a minimum, you need the following -

    Powder measuring device.
    Die set with de-priming / sizing die, bullet seating die.
    Hand-priming tool.
    A single-stage press.
    A loading block (holes to hold brass).

    That's as cheap as $75 new, and much less, Used.
    Plus whatever powders and primers you require.

    That's the crudest, cheapest set of equipment.

    Sky's the Limit, after that.

    There are all manner of powder-pouring / -measuring devices from measuring scoops ($10) to precision powder 'tricklers' (?) to balance scales ($45) to digital scales ($100+)

    All kind of presses from Lee's super affordable Single (which I recommend for beginners) to units upgradeable from singe to multi (like RCBS Rock-Crusher) to multis from all the major makers (use a Dillon 550B, myself). $10-$350

    Brass cleaning - you ought to consider a primer pocker reamer. small hand tools go for a few bucks, and there are bench-mounted reamer / swages available that would be nice if you shoot a lot of military brass with crimped primer pockets.
    Again, $10-$100
    Also consider a tumbler. I've seen everything from homemade contraptions using 5-gal buckets and dryer motors (think 'giant rock tumbler') to nice models in med and large capacities. I scored a nice medium at a gunshow for $30. Prices anywhere from $40-100.

    Dies - all manner available. Strongly recommend Lee's titanium nitride -lined pistol dies - no lubrication required, fine pieces.
    Some folks using multi-stage presses, or seeking maximum quality opt to use a seperate crimping die, using their combo seating/crimping dies for seating depth ONLY. Pricing: various.


    I've said it in other threads here, strongly recommend a beginner starts with a single-stage press. That way when you make mistakes, the damage is limited to 10s of rounds instead of 100s.
    And the slower one-stage-at-a-time method focuses the attention on what you are doing, and why. Learn to Walk, Before You Run (screaming to the store to buy a multi-stage!)

    Rich

    frostyduck
    Member
    Posts: 7
    (1/18/03 10:49:18 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: starting reloading
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    rayra has good advice for you. I started with a Dillon and like it,...but if I had it to do over again, I would get a Lee starter kit like you mentioned, then work my way up. This somewhat depends on what you plan to reload to begin with,...pistol or rifle rounds. If you are only going to load handgun ammo,...then maybe you want to dive right into the Dillon. Also, check out the Lyman Manual,..think that it is good for starter,...easy to read and understand.

    eapples
    Member
    Posts: 5
    (1/30/03 4:17:13 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: starting reloading
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    I'm fairly new to reloading myself, having started about five years ago. I load only 38 special and 45 acp. I copied recipes from some of the guys in the club, so I'm not the innovative type.

    I purchased a Dillon Square Deal B. I generally get twisted over minute details, so setting up the press was a bit of a chore for me. However, once I got it up and running, it was just a matter of polishing my skills. The folks at Dillon are great when it comes to tech support.

    Eapples <

    mblynm
    Member
    Posts: 1
    (2/1/03 9:14:45 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: starting reloading
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    I am starting reloading and will use the RCBS Rock Chucker Kit as a starting point. Is it absolutely necessary to have a tumbler as part of starter equipment?

    I have read extensively, as well as seeing the various manufacturer's starting kits, none of which seem to include any kind of case cleaning equipment other than care for primer pockets and resizing before loading.

    Edited by: mblynm at: 2/1/03 9:16:59 am

    Zigzag2
    *TFF Senior Staff*
    Posts: 5399
    (2/1/03 10:36:02 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: starting reloading
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    mblynm, hello and Welcome to The Firearms Forum.

    A tumbler would not be considered part of a starter kit.

    IMHO, a tumbler comes into play when you have a "bunch" of "dirty" brass.

    An inspection and hand cleaning will surfice



    Quote:
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    "Tell the gossipers and liars I will see them in the fire" - Johnny Cash, Let the train whistle blow
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    ZiggedandZagged@aol.com



    inplanotx
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 123
    (2/1/03 4:29:00 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: starting reloading
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    In a blanket statement I would like to recommend Lyman's 47th reloading handbook. All the information needed to start reloading is located in this book with an abundance of help. It also has a lot of load data in it and ballistic information to boot. Everything you ever wanted to know about powders, primers, brass and bullets, dies, scales, calipers, and tools.
    Improvise...Adapt...Overcome

    armedandsafe
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 71
    (2/1/03 11:14:27 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: starting reloading
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    I would like to second the recommendation on the Lyman book. I have reloaded for more than 50 years, and I still read and re-read it.

    Armed and Safe - not just a theory


    mblynm
    Member
    Posts: 4
    (2/2/03 5:50:51 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: starting reloading
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    Is anyone familiar with the relatively new reloading manual by Swift? And, if so, is it a good reference source, also??

    eapples
    Member
    Posts: 7
    (2/6/03 11:39:06 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: starting reloading
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    Since you guys are talking manuals, let me add another facet to the issue.

    I purchased several manuals in my quest to learn reloading and to formulate loads that would work well for me in my guns (686 and Gold Cup). They each have different recipes for the same bullet weight and type. It totally confused me. So, what I did was (roughly) to take an average of the starting charges shown in the manuals, less 10%, and that was the starting point for me in working up loads for my guns. What I found was that what worked for me bore (no pun intended) no relationship to what was shown in any of the manuals.

    No evidence of pressure buildup...no splits or case separations, etc.

    I'm wondering how this fits in with the experience you guys have had.

    Eapples <;-)

    inplanotx
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 129
    (2/8/03 9:27:32 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: starting reloading
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    Hi eapples,
    Over the years, I have picked up many load manuals by all the major manufacturers. Until recently this has been the only way to do it. Now, thanks to all the manufactureres, there have been individual caliber loading manuals. These can be found at Midway and other outlets under the names of "Loadbooks USA Inc". These books contain individual caliber load data on recepiecs shown by bullet, powder and gun info. The info I have is as follows:

    Loadbooks USA Inc.
    18826B Soledad Canyon Road
    Canyon Country
    California, 91351
    Phone: 805 250 8502
    FAX: 805 250 8493

    Hope this helps. These manuals also give the pressure tables with loads listed. I believe Midway sells these for $8 each for a given caliber. I have not been given wrong information yet. I also buy the manufacturers data books each time they change. Lyman is the best loading data with their books. Hope this helps.

    Improvise...Adapt...Overcome

    mblynm
    Member
    Posts: 11
    (2/8/03 9:39:12 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del
    ezSupporter
    Re: starting reloading
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    Following on the note about Loadbooks USA, they have a web site, also, that is at this URL:

    www.loadbooks.com/main.htm

    Hope this will be helpful. Loadbook's prices listed include S&H.
    "For God so loved the World that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life." John 3:16 "If we ever forget that we are One Nation Under God, then we will be a Nation gone under." Ronald Reagan "The greatest danger to the American people is a government that ignores the Constitution." Author unknown to this writer "Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a Little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety." Benjamin Franklin

    armedandsafe
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 89
    (2/9/03 1:44:20 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: starting reloading
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    Just went to that link, but didn't see any links on that page to list the various books nor to buy. ???

    Armed and Safe - not just a theory


    mblynm
    Member
    Posts: 13
    (2/9/03 2:16:33 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del
    ezSupporter
    Re: LoadBooks
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    Sorry about that, "armedandsafe".

    Try: www.loadbooks.com/

    This URL leaving out reference to "main" or "index" worked for me a few minutes ago.



    armedandsafe
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 91
    (2/10/03 9:20:09 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: LoadBooks
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    That looks better. Thank you, kind sir.

    Armed and Safe - not just a theory


    eapples
    Member
    Posts: 8
    (2/11/03 10:47:07 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Reloading Manuals
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    LoadBook and LoadMap were among the collection of reloading manuals that I have. The recipes in LoadMap were way above what I am using.

    BUT, I am now using LoadMap as my primary reference source.

    Another shooting compadre told me that, since LoadMap has the specific bullet configuration with the specific powder, I shouldn't go below the starting charge. But, what do you do for a configuration that isn't covered, e.g., 185 grain plated round nose (45acp), 178 grain lead swc (45acp), etc.?
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