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Looking into starting to load my own.

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by Phillyfan, Dec 16, 2009.

  1. Phillyfan

    Phillyfan Oregon City, Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Would it be better to get one of the "everything you need in one box" kits, or buy pieces separately? I'd be loading 9mm, 40 S&W, 45acp, and .270 win. I'd like to stay well below $500.

    Any recommendations?
     
  2. jmh119

    jmh119 Hillsboro, Oregon Member

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    I use the RCBS kit myself. Have no issues with it and enjoy using it. Bi-Mart currently has it for 299.97
    James
     
  3. TonsOfOregonBrass

    TonsOfOregonBrass Sandy, OR Active Member

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    I am pretty sure you could get into everything in the RCBS kit for less then what the kit sells for. Just would take some time shopping around.

    Personally i bought everything i needed separately. I found that each company makes some things very well and other things not so well. I love redding dies. Don't care for RCBS dies. there bullet puller works great, but i like Hornady presses more. It is mostly personal preference. but do some looking around and ask to try a friends machine. if not, i know there is a supporting member who is offering some reloading classes. so you could try a couple presses out there.
     
  4. warnerwh

    warnerwh Portland, OR Member

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    You can do a good job for 300. If I were to get another single stage I'd get another Lee Classic Cast. It's all the press the Rockchucker is for much less money. The Lee has a bigger opening, the primers don't fly all over the place and you can put on the Safety Prime and speed up loading. Right now at Midway you can get one for 76.00 on sale. Also Lee presses are made in the U.S.A., not China. The Lee Classic Turret you can get and use as a single stage for a while until you have been reloading for a while. For under a 100 dollars it's a bargain. If you do go with it make sure it's the Classic Turret, not the older model Deluxe Turret. With the Classic turret press you can get a lot more ammo done. With handguns speed can be important if you go through a lot.
    I would not buy a kit. Pick and choose yourself so you can get what you want. You'll need a decent scale and a balance scale is what I personally would buy. Many like the digital scales but the decent ones are expensive. Of course you'll need dies and again I'd buy the Lee dies. They have a powder through die for belling case mouths that also will actuate a powder measure so you can do both at the same time.
    If you'd like a list of what you need go here and check out the stickies: http://www.thehighroad.org/forumdisplay.php?f=15
    It's very thorough information. I can tell you now the first and most important thing you need is a loading manual like Lyman or Lee where they explain how to reload and read and read some more. Reloading books are a necessity.
     
  5. Throckmorton

    Throckmorton Florence,Ore ah gone Well-Known Member

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    I started with Lee and would not hesitate to do it again,especially with their cast press they have.
    unless you're into splitting hairs at 200 yards,their ammo will shoot just fine.
    start with pistol ammo,it's easier all the way around.
    buy carbid pistol dies,no lube required,althoug a smidge makes the press fly.
    buy used dies if you can get them for say 15.00 or so less than new...for 4 calibers that's 60.00 for components.
    and do come back here and ask questions,always glad to help
     
  6. turq

    turq Molino,oregon Member

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    You might try pricing out a Redding turret and a good digital scale(or dispenser.scale) and add whatever else you might need as you go...also a Horn. caliper
     
  7. Grizzly_A

    Grizzly_A Portland Metro Area Member

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    I'd get a kit since you don't know everything that you need at this point. A kit is helpful in getting started and you can always sell the parts and upgrade to new ones when you want too.
     
  8. giddyupgo55

    giddyupgo55 Vernonia Active Member

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    I would start with a kit,for me I started with RCBS so I cannot say anthing about other presses. Once you have a kit then you can add to it what ever else you need. I would suggest though that you buy a couple more manuals so you can compare information.
     
  9. buffalo

    buffalo Soon to be Port Angeles/Sequim New Member

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    I got a Lyman Turret kit from BassPro that i love for about $300. I use it for 9mm,.45acp,30-30,.308,works great for me.
     
  10. Gunner3456

    Gunner3456 Salem Well-Known Member

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    I think it's easy to underestimate by far how much it costs to get good, not great, reloading equipment and supplies.

    If you just want to reload a few, it might not be worth it. If you want to reload a lot (and why bother if you don't?) then it's going to bite.

    I think I could put a decent outfit together for maybe 4 calibers for $1k. No less. That would buy me no brass and no consumables (bullets, powder, primers.) If I start with a Dillon, make that $1500 because there is extra cost in caliber swaps.

    I wouldn't reload if I couldn't test my loads with a chronograph on a tripod. Bingo. $125 min. I wouldn't reload if I couldn't case length resize, chamfer and measure both case length and overall loaded length. Bingo. Another $125. I wouldn't reload if I didn't have a tumbler, media and cleaners. Another $100 gone. I wouldn't reload without an electronic scale and a bunch of other things. It adds up fast and that's not talking about the press and dies, case lube, pad, and on and on.

    I would be really interested to see if there is a serious reloader on here who has decent and complete equipment who doesn't have at least a grand in the equipment alone. ??

    To me, the kit is just the teaser.

    And then you get hooked on stocking up on brass and consumables.

    $.02
     
  11. buffalo

    buffalo Soon to be Port Angeles/Sequim New Member

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    I would agree 100% with this,even though i got the press,scale,tumbler and several other things for $300 when you add in all the other items i have well over 1k invested. Granted some items are just luxury items that i really don't need but if your gonna do alot you might as well make it as easy as possible. Within the year i will be getting a Dillon 650 and just using my Lyman Turret for my rifle calibers.
     
  12. RobertJ.

    RobertJ. Seaside, OR Member

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    Do you have any friends that load their own? If you do, I would ask him to go to a gun show with you and help you pick out all the required items. I know that if I had a budget of $500, I could go to a gun show and come away with a nice set up, including components. I started watching my dad reload when I was 9, and bought my first outfit when I was 19. That was 1979. Just try to get together with someone who knows what they're doing, if you don't know anyone, then hook up with someone from this forum who's willing to teach you. It's not that difficult, but there are a few tricky areas for beginners. Good luck and good shooting!
     
  13. RobertJ.

    RobertJ. Seaside, OR Member

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    You've given some good advice, but he's talking about getting started, not the amount of equipment that most of us have found we need over the years. I think seeing a price tag of a grand or more might scare away someone who's considering getting started. For instance, a chrono is great, but not required to get started. A tumbler is great, we all want clean cases, but not absolutely required to get started. A decent measure is great, but as long as you have a good scale (which IS required), a set of Lee dippers work just fine. I know, I can hear some of you gasping at that last one, but it's true. I've loaded lots of ammo with Lee dippers! And the Lee case trimmer will only set you back a few bucks. Now, I'm not a Lee salesman, I actually use mostly RCBS, but as far as getting a person started, Lee is inexpensive quality, and hard to beat. That's just my $.02!
     
  14. itgoesboom

    itgoesboom Hillsboro Member

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    I think it's more realistic to start with one or two calibers, and see how it goes. Also, you can find great deals on reloading equipment for fairly cheap. I got lucky and purchased my getup for about $100 from a neighbor, which included a press, scale, powder thrower, dies, calipers, manuals, case trimmer, priming tools and several other tools. Oh, and about 5,000+ primers and a bunch of bullets too. I still use the vast majority of what I got in that first purchase, although I have picked up other items as well.

    Once you have found some success with the first 1 or 2 calibers, you can decide what works well, and what doesn't, and you will know better what you need.