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Need help picking a reload setup!

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by Lightninghammer, Dec 4, 2013.

  1. Lightninghammer

    Lightninghammer Albany oregon New Member

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    I have never reloaded before so I am looking for a decent setup that is easy to use safely and doesn't cost a fortune. I'm mainly looking to reload rifle cartridges in small amounts. I would like the option of also cranking out .45acp. Do all presses handle rifle and pistol ammo? What are the benefits of progressive vs single stage? Thanks, any help is appreciated!
     
  2. deadeye

    deadeye Albany,OR. Moderator Staff Member

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  3. Mongo1

    Mongo1 Santiam Canyon Active Member

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    The "Rock Chucker" kit is good as well-----on sale at Bi-Mart this week @ $269
     
    orygun, 2ndtimer, Dunerunner and 3 others like this.
  4. Lightninghammer

    Lightninghammer Albany oregon New Member

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    Thanks for the links!
     
  5. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf SE Portland Well-Known Member

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    There's a reloading section/forum down below. Very common question.. like once a day.. there's one there now on the top of the list asking your exact question with some responses.

    Here's a search result of thread titles containing "equipment" in the reloading section..

    http://www.northwestfirearms.com/search.php?searchid=6555760

    Good luck.
     
  6. Dunerunner

    Dunerunner You'll Never Know Well-Known Member

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    For a beginner, I would go with a single stage press like the RCBS Rock Chucker.
     
  7. My 3 sons

    My 3 sons Bonney Lake Active Member

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    Deadeye has called out the press I started with. No regrets for an entry level press.
    With other equipment I added later I got up to 100 rounds per hour if I wanted to.

    Before you get into setting up anything though read the reloading manual.... Twice. I blew up a gun and it's no fun. Luckily no one was hurt but my ignorance and lack of prep caused it.

    When you do get loading enjoy it. My sons and I sure do. We have progressed to a Dillon 650 and now even 3 shot shell loaders.
     
  8. springfield0612

    springfield0612 Poulsbo Member

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    I have the Lee Deluxe 4 Hole turret press, Lee Classic Cast Turret press, (2) Lee Single stage breach lock presses, and a Lee Pro 1000 progressive press. The classic cast handles much longer rounds and still auto indexs. The Deluxe turret will do shorter .30 call rounds but you have to disable to auto indexing. The classic cast can handle a wider spectrum of ammo. But the Deluxe can get the job done as well.

    If I had to choose to keep one press it would be the Lee Classic Cast Turret press.

    Lee Reloading Supplies | Reloading Equipment Lee Precision | Discount Reloading Supplies by Lee | Titan Reloading

    If you're interested in the Lee Deluxe 4 Hole Turret Press with auto indexing. PM me and I may be able to hook you up with a deal.
     
  9. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf SE Portland Well-Known Member

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    I noticed you're in Albany. Here's a sweet looking Lyman six station turret and stuff for sale in Albany.. probably talk him down (I would)..

    Lyman Press, Redding scale Etc.

    Again, good luck.
     
  10. Jammer Six

    Jammer Six North Greenlake, Seattle New Member

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    I'm a straight up Dillon guy. Started on a Square Deal.

    If you load rifle, I'd get a 650, and skip all the unnecessary steps.
     
  11. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf SE Portland Well-Known Member

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    I wonder how much he shoots/wants to shoot a year. where'd he go?
     
  12. rdt

    rdt SW Portland Active Member

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    how big of a rifle cartridge are we talking?

    "crank out" anything, especially handgun = progressive.

    lee has the quality/price point, especially at lower round counts. I did the math once for how many rounds it took to pay off certain presses in one year. I can't remember all the numbers, but the lee loadmaster was the fastest payoff at 2k rounds of .45

    I very quickly got fed up with trying to produce volume plinking rounds with a single stage press. many of the set up tutorials for progressives start you off running it like a single stage, so the learning curve isn't really so much steeper.

    my advice is start with at least a turret if not a progressive, read ALOT and watch ALOT of videos, and just take it easy as you get going. that means as soon as you start to feel confident, stop and re check what you've made and how you've been making it. As you get farther along, maybe youre getting into bigger rifle loads or fine tuned loads, then get a single stage.
     
  13. stavros4570

    stavros4570 eugene,or. Member

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    Rockchuker is king. Single stage is best, especially if you want to reload a variety of ammo. If you want to make really accurate ammo you have to weigh every charge! Good luck!
     
    2ndtimer and (deleted member) like this.
  14. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf SE Portland Well-Known Member

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    Well that's certainly debatable. I'm not a benchrester but many winners of that game set "it" and forget it.
     
  15. 2ndtimer

    2ndtimer SE Washington state Active Member

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    If you are a tinkerer who anticipates trying lots of different powders, primers, bullets and multiple cartridges in both handguns and rifles, then go with a single stage press for sure. If on the other hand, you plan to find a good load and load tons of it, the progressive makes good sense. I started out with an RCBS Rockchucker press and am still using it about 35 years later. I also have a Dillon RL-550B progressive that I have loaded a bunch of 9mm, .38 Special, .357 Magnum, and .44 Magnum over the years, and it is a great unit, particularly if you are a "set it and forget it" kind of guy. I have used the single stage press more over the past 10 years or so because I don't shoot as much volume wise, and have done more variety testing with rifles than handguns. I still enjoy cranking out 3 or 400 9mm cartridges every so often on the Dillon. Doesn't take long on the progressive. Of course, I had over a decade of experience with the Rockchucker before I got the Dillon. I think that is the best way to go to start. Later, if you desire it, you can add a progressive press if you want to load large volumes of handgun ammo.
     
    Certaindeaf and (deleted member) like this.
  16. Jammer Six

    Jammer Six North Greenlake, Seattle New Member

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    For you fellow Blue guys, who own Dillons and single stage presses, what do you use the single stage presses for?

    I never want one of anything. I want a minimum of twenty, and a max of two thousand.

    Dillon, all the way. Don't own a single stage, a bicycle or a small pickup.
     
  17. 2ndtimer

    2ndtimer SE Washington state Active Member

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    I use my single stage press for working up loads incrementally. The Dillon is great once you have determined a load but a single stage press is easier to try various primers, powder charges, seating depths or changing powders .
     
  18. Jammer Six

    Jammer Six North Greenlake, Seattle New Member

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    I mass produce everything, including workups.

    I start with a minimum charge, a maximum charge, and load ten-twenty at the minimum, adjust the powder throw, load ten more at minimum + .1 grain, and so on.

    That way, I know that the only thing I've changed is the powder charge.

    In a standard loading session, I load 100 rounds to work up a load, at ten different increments. The only difference between workups and production loading is that I weigh every charge during workups.

    I understand wanting to pay attention to every round, particularly for match ammo. But why would you not want to load as efficiently and quickly as possible?

    For me, the joy is creation and research results, not pulling the handle.

    I'm not sure I'd want to load 100 rounds on a single stage press.
     
  19. Blitzkrieg

    Blitzkrieg WA Well-Known Member

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    Contact this member.. he has used classic USA made iron presses cheap. I bought a RCBS JR3 for 45 bucks recently, great shape

    View Profile: marcusp323 - Northwest Firearms Community

    I do multiple thousands of mil surp rifle brass depriming/sizing on single stages in order to make premium, clean reloads. I'm near ready to do 7K 5.56 rounds

    I have two progressives including a Dillon RL1050 with electric case feed hopper
     
  20. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf SE Portland Well-Known Member

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    Have you ever loaded a rifle round? The fancy dandy process of a progressive is kinda lost on those there, especially when people (most it seems) tumble, decap, size, trim, prime, tumble again, then go all postal charging and seating on their "progressive". lolz.. then tumble again.
    You make me laugh.