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biggstriper

Reloading:

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How many of you do it?

 

With the price of ammo and very limited availability of certain calibers it seems to be the only sane thing learn about and do these days. I don't see it getting any better in the foreseeable future. People are acting like finding .22 ammo is the Holy Grail or something.

 

Pretty rediculous.

 

I bought a dvd about it yesterday and will study it. I watched the part about loading a 30-06 bullet last night.

 

I guess the first thing I'll need is a sturdy work bench. Maybe I can get a friend to build me one from scrap wood. The basic one from BPS costs about 100 bucks. Then I'll just get a kit with most of the stuff in it.

 

Tell me if I'm going in the right direction here.

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Yeah, I watched a dvd of an old Steve McQueen movie called "Nevada Smth" last week. In it McQueen meets Brian Keith who plays a gun salesman camped while traveling the west. Keith is shown loading ammo at a table hammering down bullets in cartridges.

 

That's kinda what sparked my interest about reloading.

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You'll find that you'll want to reload for one of two reasons, or both.

 

1) Cost - reloading, or handloading, will allow you to produce quality ammo at a fraction of the price. Naturally you donate your time to the effort, but once you get going you'll likely view loading as a hobby unto itself. I can churn out 9mm ammo at cost of around 7 bucks a box.

 

2) Special Load - you may find that you need or desire a specific load for the type of shooting you do. Not all rounds are created equal. Using my shooting disciplines, I may load a round for 750 FPS for steel, but another round for 1,100 FPS for bowling pins.

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Basically, there are two ways to go. Buy a "kit" or go a la carte, and buy everything separately. In general, most kits don't have the best of everything, but, all are serviceable. A kit built around a Hornady LnL or RCBS Rock Chucker would be my first choice if I was starting over.

 

:v:

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Ditto on the Rockchucker. My bench has 2 progressives ( blue of course) on them, but I still use the Rockchucker for lots of stuff. You can get a decent factory rifle down to about a half/quarter of an inch just by messsing around with the load.

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Shopping list:

 

a tumbler, tumbler media, and media separator.

 

RCBS Rock Chucker Press. A bench to mount it on. If you don't have a work bench, look into harbor freight $27 adjustable height heavy duty work station (throw some more plywood on top and you are good to go). don't forget 3/8 inch bolts and nuts.

 

Redding 2 set rifle dies - 1) full length resizing and 2) bullet seating.

 

For large cases - Imperial Sizing Die Wax. For smaller cases - Dillon Case Lube

 

A case gauge (specific to your caliber).

 

A dial or electronic caliper.

 

RCBS hand priming tool

 

Some kind of case trimmer. Out of all the case prep chores, this is the one I hate the most. If you have a power drill, the little crow gun works trimmer is a nice tool. but you still have to debur and chamfer. so you also need a debur and chamfer tool. Or, you could just bite the bullet and get a Giraud, which trims and chamfers and deburs, like sharpening a pencil.

 

A scale. I like Dillon's electronic scale.

 

A powder culver.

 

A powder funnel.

 

You're going to make mistakes, so you can either get an RCBS bullet puller die with caliber specific collets, or a plastic kinetic bullet puller.

 

you'll need a reloading manual (a load book with recipes). cabelas has a nice selection of calibers with starting and max loads.

 

you'll need primer, brass, powder, and bullets.

 

if you are really intent on squeezing maximum accuracy out of your handloads, then a case annealing tool is helpful to get uniform neck tension.

 

you'll need time and space away from the wife and the kids. reloading bench is no place for distractions.

 

if you learn how to load on a single stage press first, then reloading on a progressive is cake.

 

PS if you are loading military cartridges (5.56 and 7.62 NATO)

 

- a tool to ream the crimped primer pocket (hornady primer pocket reamer or dillon supers swage)

 

- a taper crimp die (dillon) if the ammo is going to be used in a box magazine fed semi-auto.

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Never reloaded anything but 12 ga. skeet loads. I could load a bos for $1-2 per. That was a while ago. Now I buy AA factories and ignore the expense. I don't have that kind of time any more

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yep have fun getting powder my club put in an oder for shotgun reloading stuff still waiting on powder and a few other odds and ends.

 

And shot

The cost of shot, when you can even find it, (I load 7 1/2 size) has sky-rocketed to the point where it's no longer economical to reload :(

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When I was 16, loaded my first .308 rounds like this at the kitchen table :)

 

 

 

:v:

 

Is that a reliable way to reload? It looks a lot cheaper and less complicated than getting all the other stuff.

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Is that a reliable way to reload? It looks a lot cheaper and less complicated than getting all the other stuff.

 

I made some good ammo! It has a lot of limitations. Everyone should resize cases with a hammer and measure powder with scoop, once in their lives ;)

 

I bought my first press when I was 17.

 

 

:v:

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The deal is reloading lets you customize rounds to get the best accuracy possible from your specific firearm. I have been reloading for 40 years!

 

I started out reloading for economy with a Lee reloader kit for my 30-06 Winchester cheapo 670. All in all, not a bad way to go if economy is your goal and you don't shoot too much. I found an arbor press and balance beam powder scale let me load a wider range of charges and qualled the wifes complaint about my hammering on the kitchen counter. Shot many deer for the table in the early days and still have that Lee kit on the shelf in the shop. My only complaints with the Lee kit is that the dipper powder measure limits you ability to experiment with a wide range of suitable powders, and output is slow.

 

I now reload .280 Rem, 7.62 X39 cast, .22 Hornet, and have also loaded .357 Mag., 25-06 and .308 in the past.

 

My caution would be to load for accuracy rather than maximum velocity!!! Use poblished loading data, don't think about experimenting with unknown recipes! Keep good records and never depend on memory. Use good equipment and follow all safety warnings to the letter! Join a club with a good range and have fun. The reloading and shooting is just as much fun as hunting. Join a gun club with a good range to enable you to test loads under controlled, safe conditions.

 

I have two RCBS Rockchuckers now, use Forster dies for the .280 and Lee collet dies for the Hornet and 7.62. My .280 load is very. very accurate, mild recoiling, but kills whitetails with authority.

 

If you are detail oriented, can focus 100% on the task at hand and are handy with tools, go for it!

 

However, if you lack the ability to focus, are easily distracted, easily frustrated, lack discipline and are unwilling to measure your pace, this is not for you.

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