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Interested in learning reloading.


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I’m still very new to the site. But have found a lot of helpful and great people on here. I was looking in the very near future to start reloading, and wanted a little rundown of the necessary starter pieces and equipment. Any info, tips, do’s & don’ts are welcome. 
 

Thanks! 

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Hi, and welcome.

First,I'd suggest reading the book "The ABCs of Reloading". Also, you will want 2 or 3 reloading manuals.... Hornady, Speer, etc.  Educate yourself on the rounds you are interested in, powders possible, etc. 

You will find reloading components hard to find right now.  Lots of folks like powder measuring and press preferences around companies like Lee, RCBS, etc.

Doing homework is key to reloading.

Lots of references here.. good luck.

 

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I certainly encourage you to pursue this. However it's a really lousy time to start due to limited availability of powder and primers. Bullets seem fairly easy to find. 

What caliber do you want to start loading? 

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17 minutes ago, superduty said:

Hi, and welcome.

First,I'd suggest reading the book "The ABCs of Reloading". Also, you will want 2 or 3 reloading manuals.... Hornady, Speer, etc.  Educate yourself on the rounds you are interested in, powders possible, etc. 

You will find reloading components hard to find right now.  Lots of folks like powder measuring and press preferences around companies like Lee, RCBS, etc.

Doing homework is key to reloading.

Lots of references here.. good luck.

 

Thank you! I’ll look into those.

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13 minutes ago, Raoul said:

I certainly encourage you to pursue this. However it's a really lousy time to start due to limited availability of powder and primers. Bullets seem fairly easy to find. 

What caliber do you want to start loading? 

If possible any of the following will be my main shooting rounds I would like to learn on. 

243, 270, 30-30, 30-06

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8 hours ago, Derek12 said:

And 9mm

Loading pistol ammo on a single stage press is a labor of love. It takes a lot of time to produce enough to shoot in a few minutes.

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3 minutes ago, TNTall said:

Loading pistol ammo on a single stage press is a labor of love. It takes a lot of time to produce enough to shoot in a few minutes.

I can see that, seems like in seconds and minutes you can be dry of ammo again. Lol

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The rotary liquid case cleaners seem to be the way to go now. They're cheap and do a great job. And you'll need calipers to measure cartridge overall length.

Just about any reloading kit will work with press, powder measure, scale. Most presses probably have enough stroke to do 30-06, but some will not do longer stuff like 300 win mag. A powder trickler is a plus, and so is a hand priming tool. Loading blocks are helpful, but you can also use the Redding die cases.

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10 hours ago, Raoul said:

I certainly encourage you to pursue this. However it's a really lousy time to start due to limited availability of powder and primers

Raoul is right on the money, here. Components are unobtanium at anything approaching reasonable prices. Powder is in low supply, brass is hard to find.  And reloading equipment is commanding premium prices right now. 

If I were interested in starting out right now, I'd try hard to hold off until supplies normalize again. The problem with that, of course, is that we could be looking at a new normal. 

 

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2 hours ago, gregintenn said:

http://www.lebanongunshop.com/services.html

The Lebanon Gun Shop offers reloading classes.

I second the recommendation of buying 'The ABC's of Reloading" and reading it before buying anything else.

I love this. ! Thank you " Lebanon Gun Shop " Brothers n Sisters. !  We salute all Ya'll..!  SALUTE.  !!!

admirin leroy .  

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Most reloading companies sell "Starter Kits" which have the basic equipment to get started. But almost all of them need  few more things added. You don't really need expensive or fancy. Just good quality basic gear. I've been reloading about 40 years now and I've done it all on an old RCBS Rockchuker press that I bought used way back then. 

The biggest thing you need is time. Reloading can save you money and produce excellent ammo, but it is time consuming. Progressive presses can be considerably faster, but they're expensive to buy and take time to set up properly every time you change calibers. I still load everything on my old single stage Rockchuker. What I do is make ammo in large batches. Usually 500 - 1000 rounds. Generally takes several full days of work, but when I'm done I don't have to do it again for quite a while. 😉

Also consider the value of your time vs cost of ammo. For many years I didn't bother loading 9mm because you could get surplus range ammo cheaper than what my time was worth to make it. I guess those days are gone now. 🙄 But likewise, there are odd calibers that I don't shoot very often. So I don't bother to reload them either. 

OTOH there are some cartridges that you pretty much have to reload to get the best out of them. Two of my favorite handgun cartridges immediately come to mind.  The .44 Special and the .45 Colt. Factory ammo for both is seriously lacking  in performance and way too damned expensive! 😲 If you don't reload, don't bother with either one. The same can be said for many other cartridges as well. 

Reloading is a boon for any serious shooter and can be quite a rewarding hobby in itself. But its not for everybody. I'd guess that if you look around a bit, you'll find some used equipment being sold fairly cheap by someone it didn't work out for. 😉

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If you want to reload 9mm I suggest you look into a Dillon Square Deal B. You can load about 400 rounds and hour or so. Dillon also has their "No BS warranty". I bought my Dillon from a friend about 11 years ago, so it was already a heavily used piece of equipment. The frame broke on me last year. I contacted Dillon and they didn't even ask why or how it broke. When I got the unit back they had not only replaced the frame, but also replaced my powder dropper for free. 

As far as reloading rifle goes, it depends on how much you shoot. I have a Lymen Turret press that I use to reload 223 and let me tell you, it's much, much to slow. If you want to reload more that 100 rounds at a time, a single stage press is not the way to go. The Lymen is great if you don't plan on reloading a ton of ammo. 

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I started reloading on my father's RCBS press when I was a kid. When I married and moved out, I bought Lee reloading tools because they were inexpensive. Fast forward 25 years, except for a few exceptions, I'm still using Lee products, not because of economy anymore, but because I see no need in upgrading. They work!

I don't wish to discourage you, but you've picked a terrible time to begin reloading, as supplies are not to be found at this time. Don't fret, however, this will pass. We've seen it before, and we'll see it again.

Edited by gregintenn
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Derek you have been given some good advice by many. I might add trying to find or make friends with somebody that reloads. It is much easier to learn by seeing it done firsthand. You still need to have and read reloading books. If you friend will teach you and let you load some, you can find out first hand is this something you would enjoy. If you aren't a perfectionist, I say leave it alone. I enjoy reloading almost as much as shooting and I can do it in the dead of winter at night. If you still want to reload your best bet for economy is finding used items, they rarely get worn out. I will 2nd what Paul Revere said, I started with and still load on a Rockchucker, but my dillon square deal is nice. Bought it used off of evilbay and it had belonged to a shooter so no telling the tens of thousands this machine has made, if I have something break, Dillon replaces it free, I told them the first time I needed something that I bought it used off of evilbay and the guy said it's blue isn't it and I said yes and his reply was I don't care if you found it in a ditch is has a lifetime warranty. Start looking for your newest best buddy!!

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9 hours ago, Darrell said:

Raoul is right on the money, here. Components are unobtanium at anything approaching reasonable prices. Powder is in low supply, brass is hard to find.  And reloading equipment is commanding premium prices right now. 

If I were interested in starting out right now, I'd try hard to hold off until supplies normalize again. The problem with that, of course, is that we could be looking at a new normal. 

 

If its brass your after I have a bunch I'd be willing to sell.

 

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I'm glad you're interested but, like the others said components are scarce but, you can find stuff. Might not be exactly what you had in mind. I've loaded a few hundred rds. the last few weeks with powder that I thought I'd never use.

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Thank you everyone for all the words of wisdom. It is quite an awful time to look into realoading. But I’ll start with my research and book learning for the next little bit until everything passes. *fingers crossed* lol

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16 minutes ago, gregintenn said:

Is that the band camp girl from American Pie?

"One time there was this time at band camp"...…….

Edited by Quavodus
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  • Haha 1
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