Reloading Supplies

Discussion in 'General Firearm Discussion' started by cherry20, Jan 22, 2010.

  1. cherry20


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    What do i need to get to start reloading my own ammo. Looking to reload 223 or 556. Some good info would be appreciated.
  2. speelyei

    Willamette Valley
    Active Member

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    Lee kits

    You can spend 1000's of dollars on reloading equipment, but any of these kits will get you started. My Dad gave me the hand-press kit a few years ago, and I still have it today, although I have upgraded and added a lot of things since. There are alot of tutorials on the web, and manuals to show you how to do it. The kits come with explicit instructions, too.
    You will also need small rifle primers, bullets, and powder. IMR 3031 is a fine powder to start with.
  3. CrossHairs

    Active Member

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    One of the members of this forum does a re-loading class....that might be a great way to start. However, the web is also a great resource, try looking on youtube for reloading and you will get a really good idea of what's involved pretty quickly.

    Many of the re-load supply companies sell kits that have most of what you need...although there is always something else you have to have as well.

    But at a high level here is some equipment

    • Press
    • Dies
    • Trimmer Tool
    • Deburring Tool
    • Primer Seating Tool
    • Primer Pocket Cleaner
    • Powder Dispenser and or scale

    Then of course you need powder, primers and bullets.

    Most if not all can be found at Bi-Mart, Cabela's and online at multiple locations.

    Hopefully that gets you started, and if I forgot something, someone else will certainly correct me!
  4. TAT2D


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    You could also take up this question in the 'Ammunition & Reloading' forum on this site.

    Also, I've been catching up on TSP ( and last night listened to Jack's take on reloading. Was episode 75.

  5. TonsOfOregonBrass

    Sandy, OR
    Active Member

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    I know where you can get some great 5.56 brass :D.

    I have heard very good reviews of the grassroots reloading class. But if you are not in the area, you tube is good. also the lee reloading manual #6 i believe is very good also. It will constantly be telling you how great lee is, but the basics are covered very well also.
  6. DALE

    Boring, Oregon

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  7. NWPilgrim

    Portland area

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    First get a manual that describes the reloading process and tools. Speer, Sierra, Lyman and Lee publish good manuals with lots of reloading step info and pictures. Take the class if you can, or find a mentor to guide you to accelerate the ramp up on learning.

    What you need for BASIC rifle (bottleneck) case reloading:

    - press (single stage with quick change collars like the Lee or Hornady; a turret press, or a progressive press; if you plan to reload 100-200 at a time the single stage is fine, the turret press can be used as a single stage or half way between a single and progressive. As a first press I think a single stage with quick change die collars is a great way to learn the process and ensure the greatest degree of quality and safety)

    - Die set (you will want full length resizing die, no need for the small base ones; I think the Lee set with factory crimp as a separate stage is a good value; but I also like the RCBS X-die resizing die set that only requires case trimming once)

    - Shellholder (Lee provides one in the die set, all others you have to purchase separately)

    - Powder scale (probably any scale by the major manufacturers is satisfactory, but I think a mechanical balance scale like the RCBS 505 is a good way to start; you use the scale to calibrate the powder measure)

    - Powder measure (assuming you get a single stage press, then any measure from a major manuf. is good. I have RCBS Uniflow with micrometer stem and the Lee Perfect Powder measure, but Lyman, Hornady, Redding all make good ones)

    - Pirming tool (I like the Lee Safety Prime setup on their Challenger and Turret presses, other manuf. have some form of press mounted primer seating tool, or you can get one of the hand priming tools)

    - Dial calipers (I have Dillon but any of the major manuf. are good; you will use these all the time for measuring Cartridge Overall Length, case mouth diameter, bullet diameter, case head diameter, case length, etc.)

    - Bullet puller (for most cartridges the inertia bullet puller that looks like a plastic hammer is very quick and easy, but the .223 bullets are so light they have little inertia and I think a press mounted puller like the Hornady LockNLoad bullet puller with .224 collet is the way to go)

    - Case trimmer (every time you fire and resize a case it gets squished back to specified diameter and increases in length, so you need to trim it back to acceptable length as specified in the manual; I like the L.E. Wilson case trimmer with stand and "Shark Fin" holder and case holder availabel from Sinclair, but all the other manuf. make decent ones as well.)

    - Case mouth chamfer/deburring tool (RCBS and others make a simple steel hand tool that does this, if you do large quantities you may want to upgrade to a trimmer or drill mounted one)

    - Case tumbler and polishing media like corn cob (eventually you will want to polish your brass before reloading again; this is not essential as you can wash your brass in detergent and vinegar and dry in the oven at low setting, too)

    - Bullets (cheapest and easiest to start with the 55 gr FMJ with cannelure from Winchester, Hornady, Speer, etc.)

    - Powder (it will take 20-25+ gr per case so you will get about 250 loads per pound; I like Varget, BLC-2, Reloader15, H335, H4895, or Ramshot TAC for 55gr - 75gr bullets in .223)

    - Primers (supposedly you should use military grade primers such as CCI #41 in semi autos with no firing pin spring to prevent slam fires, but I have used plenty of Winchester primers with no slam fires; just be extra careful at the range if you don;t use the CCI #41)
  8. Throckmorton

    Florence,Ore ah gone
    Well-Known Member

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    what kind of rifle are you shooting?
    the type of weapon can dictate some of the required gear.Some like small-base dies for semi autos,not needed for single shots like NEF's.
  9. gixxer1974

    Portlad Oregon

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    +1 I took the January class and am telling you now its money well spent. he's a good guy and by the end of the class you will be reloading your own ammo in his shop on both single stage and progressive presses.

    You will also leave with a lot of valuable information and resources to use in the future.:thumbup:

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