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  • 1 Post By Cordite
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Thread: Reloading newb

  1. #1
    Member Magnus's Avatar
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    Reloading newb

    Hi guys

    So it appears that I need to start having a look into reloading as the benefits weigh heavily that way as to cost
    Accurate reliable ammo etc as well as something else to tutu with. As a fitter turner I love tutu-ing and getting the most out of something. I've looked at a few different manufacturers kits from hornady, rcbs, Lee, Reading etc.
    Any advice for what to stay clear of or what is more user friendly then the other? It's easy to do a Google search an read about this an that but I'd like to hear from you guys here as to what has worked the best and what hasn't. I'm not keen to spend money on gear that I don't need to or won't really need. Again most appreciated for reply and your guidance.

    Regards Magnus
    Last edited by Magnus; 05-01-2019 at 11:32 PM.

  2. #2
    Member Cordite's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magnus View Post
    Hi guys

    So it appears that I need to start having a look into reloading as the benefits weigh heavily that way as to cost
    Accurate reliable ammo etc as well as something else to tutu with. As a fitter turner I love tutu-ing and getting the most out of something. I've looked at a few different manufacturers kits from hornady, rcbs, Lee, Reading etc.
    Any advice for what to stay clear of or what is more user friendly then the other? It's easy to do a Google search an read about this an that but I'd like to hear from you guys here as to what has worked the best and what hasn't. I'm not keen to spend money on gear that I don't need to or won't really need. Again most appreciated for reply and you guidance.

    Regards Magnus
    - Buy HXP from Gun City, at least 100, you'll have cases for reloading after that.
    - Safe powder to use is Trail Boss, it is quite fluffy so no danger of overloading, and if you underload quite safe too against detonation.
    - Buy bullets from shooternz on trademe, he sells .303 cast bullets.
    - Cheapest reloading kit is the Lee Loader, a bit time consuming, but hands on, good youtube videos on how to use it. I got one from a forum member for .303 for about $70.
    - Bullets, primers and powder all cost money, and the reloading costs time, and what is your take-home per hour at your work - that is part of the ammo cost too, make no mistake. Do your sums so you can tell what the cost of reloaded ammo is. I do not expect it to be cheaper than HXP. But you can also do reloading for the love of it. (-:
    Magnus likes this.
    Bad choices kill.
    Feeling lucky today?

  3. #3
    Member Micky Duck's Avatar
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    I bought a LEE kit 2nd had 25ish years ago and have never looked back. press,dies ,scales,primer seater and a set of dies in calire you use...then powder and projectiles and you are good to go.....some guys mount the press on block of wood etc that goes in bench vice.....not bad systen if pushed for room.
    99.9% of LEE stuff is awesome value for money......just avoid the toothpaste/sizing lube like the plague.....just about every single reloading tale of woe I heard in last few years can be traced back to that stuff...me I use good old vasoline LOL.
    Cordite likes this.

  4. #4
    Member chainsaw's Avatar
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    What calibre/s are you reloading for ? Assume it’s rifle not pistol?
    Lee gear is cheapest and good value for money. But pretty much locks you into their gear.
    I’d recommend getting a solid single stage press like RCBS, Hornady, Redding or Forster - all very good and you can run most dies.
    Dies, my first choice is Redding, but Forster, RCBS = good, Hornady can be a bit hit and miss.(ok for very standard calibres)
    Build yourself a heavy rock solid bench to mount press and provide your work space.
    Powder probably best starting out to go for ADI powders.

  5. #5
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  6. #6
    Member Max Headroom's Avatar
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    As for presses, you're likely to choose one or other of these.

    Single stage. Generally Cheaper (but not lacking in precision) slow, simple, fiddly in terms of changing dies unless you're doing batch type reloading. Saves money over a turret press.

    Turret. More expensive, faster, more complex, less mucking about with dies. Saves time over a single stage press.

    I started with a single stage to learn on, and have graduated to two turrets , one each for rifle and pistol.

    To my mind, the best of both worlds is the Lee Classic turret, which can be used as either a single stage or a turret by removing a small operating rod. Not the top of the heap, but quite versatile.
    Sideshow likes this.

  7. #7
    Member Sideshow's Avatar
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    I’d buy Nathan Fosters book on reloading. He goes through all the kit and brands.
    How much do you shoot? Our are realistically likely to shoot?
    How much room do you have?
    If you can wait there sometimes are some good kits come up on here.
    If I was to start again I’d for get the bench kits and just get a lee hand loader.
    But make sure I spent money on Hornady beam scales and decent callipers...in your line of work I’m guessing you already have a good set of callipers
    It's all fun and games till Darthvader comes along
    I respect your beliefs but don't impose them on me.

  8. #8
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    You are unlikely to save money reloading. If you are like me it will mean you end up buying more rifles, and more and more reloading gear. You start of with the basics, then buy another rifle, which means more dies, brass and projectiles, then you buy a tumbler, a chronograph, shooting rests, another rifle...
    A good O frame press is a good investment, I have a Hornady but have never tried any others so can't comment on them, but any decent brand should be good. I have found Lyman gear quite good for all the bits and pieces (scales, case prep tools etc).
    You can make good quality ammo with not a lot of gear, much of the extra stuff makes it easier or faster but you don't need it. Probably the most useful of the "don't need" extras is a powder trickler, it definitely makes things faster and easier, and doesn't cost much.
    My thoughts on the minimum to get started:
    A good reloading manual (or two!)
    Press
    Dies
    Case lube
    Case length gauge or calipers (Lyman E-zee case length gauge is quick and easy to use)
    Camfer and deburr tool
    Beam scales
    Reloading block

    Lots of other stuff can be added later.
    Once cases start getting overlength they can be put aside but will need trimming before being used again, though this is the sort of thing you can do in batches as needed using a mates gear, it doesn't need to be done at every reloading.
    Sideshow and Magnus like this.

  9. #9
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    Lee gear is good quality and excellent value. I have their cast iron O frame press for rifle loading and a turret press for pistol. Make contact with a local experienced reloader to find out the tricks of the game better than you can from a book. Watching and having some practice is better than making silly mistakes.
    Sideshow likes this.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cigar View Post
    You are unlikely to save money reloading. If you are like me it will mean you end up buying more rifles, and more and more reloading gear. You start of with the basics, then buy another rifle, which means more dies, brass and projectiles, then you buy a tumbler, a chronograph, shooting rests, another rifle...
    A good O frame press is a good investment, I have a Hornady but have never tried any others so can't comment on them, but any decent brand should be good. I have found Lyman gear quite good for all the bits and pieces (scales, case prep tools etc).
    You can make good quality ammo with not a lot of gear, much of the extra stuff makes it easier or faster but you don't need it. Probably the most useful of the "don't need" extras is a powder trickler, it definitely makes things faster and easier, and doesn't cost much.
    My thoughts on the minimum to get started:
    A good reloading manual (or two!)
    Press
    Dies
    Case lube
    Case length gauge or calipers (Lyman E-zee case length gauge is quick and easy to use)
    Camfer and deburr tool
    Beam scales
    Reloading block

    Lots of other stuff can be added later.
    Once cases start getting overlength they can be put aside but will need trimming before being used again, though this is the sort of thing you can do in batches as needed using a mates gear, it doesn't need to be done at every reloading.
    I'll add a powder funnel to my list, be a nightmare without one though could make do with a homemade paper one.

  11. #11
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    I've been loading for many years with very basic gear. You don't need all the fancy stuff, although once you get into it you might want to up grade for high volume or need super precision.
    "The generalist hunter and angler is a well-fed mofo" - Steven Rinella

  12. #12
    Bah, humbug ! Frogfeatures's Avatar
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    Mate, you can reload with a Lee Loader, primers, powder and projectiles, and the loads will be as good, or better, than factory loads.
    Google Lee Loader, have a look at what it can do, and if you want to upgrade, if the bug bites ( and it will ) then spend money then.
    Micky Duck and Magnus like this.
    He nui to ngaromanga, he iti to putanga.

    You depart with mighty boasts, but you come back having done little.
    Sounds like a typical hunting trip !

  13. #13
    Member mikee's Avatar
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    Best advise I can suggest is to find a local forum member who reloads and ask them if they will show / help you

  14. #14
    Member Cordite's Avatar
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    @Magnus

    Includes explanation why neck-sizing-only is good idea for .303s (note, you can also achieve NSO with a press using a neck-sizer die). Enjoy.

    Bad choices kill.
    Feeling lucky today?

 

 

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