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Old 09-06-2007, 12:58 PM   #1
cogs69
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Ammo Reloading

I want to get into reloading. I know I can go online and research lots of stuff, but it is nice hearing suggestions from local people in the area. I looked up some loaders and read about Lee Precision reloaders. Should I start out with a simple cheap kit to get the hang of it first, or should I get something like the Lee Pro 1000 that handles everything for you? Whats more accurate, easier, or cost effective. I know lee also has the full length dies they claim cuts down on the trimming and de-burring for you. Where do I start?
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Old 09-06-2007, 01:28 PM   #2
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Well I have a .25-06 and my wife has a .223, and we are both interested in getting into shooting regularly, if not later being competitive. Both for cost, and accuracy from everything I have been told, it is better to load your own shells. Even if it benefits me in only one but not the other, I am interested in learning and trying to load my own stuff.
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Old 09-06-2007, 01:46 PM   #3
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It couldnt hurt to just go simple to start with. Get the hang of it, figure out your preferences as far as load, bullet, primer, bullet seat depth, etc. Then, once you get settled into it, and are sure its something you want to continue with, you can go towards one of the multistationed rigs that do everything.
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Old 09-06-2007, 01:50 PM   #4
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Hand loads will save you $$$. I could get my cost per round down to like $.26-$.27 on my M14. Plus you have the whole range of adjustability with your rounds.
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Old 09-06-2007, 06:12 PM   #5
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if you plan on getting into reloading. everyone told me to get a Lee Turrent Press. You output about 250 rounds an hour compare to a single stage where its like 50 to an hour. plus with a turret its unlikely that you will have a double charge in a round.

i have a lee turrent my self and all i have load is .45acp when my Ar15 project is done i plan on reloading .223 myself.

go to barnes and noble and get a book called ABC's of reloading and read it. you'll learn alot from that book about case sizing (specially since your reloading rifle rounds), primer pockets, bullet seating, crimps, over all lenght, etc.

good luck
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Old 09-06-2007, 06:20 PM   #6
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I do a lot of competition shooting so I have a single stage and progressive set up and both in RCBS. I usually make about two to three matches per month so I am shooting about 200 to 300 rounds per month. I turned one of my bedrooms into what my loving other half refers to as the "Bunker."
You can head over to 10 Ring, they can hook you up with all the equipment you need to get going.
I can give you some pointers and help you out in tight spots if you run into anything.
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Old 09-06-2007, 09:09 PM   #7
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If you can swing it, then get the Dillon 650.

If not, the Lee Turret works well too.
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Old 09-06-2007, 10:23 PM   #8
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not worth it to reload 223 unless your running 500 plus rounds a week and 25-06 is unless your shooting 1000 plus rounds a year. progressive reloadeds are the best of course and lee makes some good ones. the plus to reloading is you can make up a custom load for your gun. i only reload 45 and 12 gauge cause they are the most cost effective. i own 2 25-06's (best caliber ever imho). but i find it cheaper to buy and get more trigger time than spending an haour setting up and an hour reloading for a 2 hour range season or a weekend coyote hunt.
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Old 09-06-2007, 11:03 PM   #9
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I might have a lee press you can buy for cheap. let me know and ill dig it out
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Old 09-06-2007, 11:30 PM   #10
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If you were loading just hunting ammo for .223 and 25-06, I would go for a single stage press like a RCBS Rockchucker or Lee Classic Cast. If you see yourself shooting any type of competition in the near future then you will need to look at some type of progressive press like the Dillon 550 or 650
With the progressive setups like a Dillon your output will be determined by a lot of factors but 350 - 400 rds per hr is a good bet. I can safely load .45 acp at that rate and and not have any problems. With reloading rifle ammo comes case prep, which takes the most amount of time for me. In a bolt rifle you can neck size only which will usually increase case life because you're not resizing the whole case, just the neck. In semi-autos I always full length resize and this works the case quite a bit, but I can get 3 - 4 firings out of .223 brass with moderate loads. I'm sure I could get more but I never really chance it.

I originally started reloading for the cost benefits, but now its a hobby by itself. I do it for convenience, not necessarily cost savings. I'm pretty sure that all of my loads cost quite less than factory ammo. But its been a while since I ran the numbers. Across the board component prices are going up. Brass, powder, bullets, etc. I use range brass most of the time and that saves a lil bit of money but its still costs.

You could invest in the Lee stuff like I did and get into this hobby for a few hundred dollars. I've also upgraded every lee item that I have as well, when I went with my Dillon 550 and the Rockchucker. Your initial cash outlay on the Dillon will be about a thousand dollars when you factor in the other items that you will need (calipers, tumbler, bullet puller, media, etc). But you will recoup this cost on the money you save over factory ammo.

Heres a quick pic of my setup. Sorry but my bench is always in a state of disarray.

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Old 09-07-2007, 07:09 AM   #11
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Thanks for all the info, this will all help a lot. And I'm sure I will have more questions for you guys when I get it going. Where is the best place to find bullets and casings? For hunting purposes I prefer to use the winchester silver ballistic tips in both my rifles. I was told to go that way with the .223 for deer hunting, and my WIFE was able to drop her deer this last year at 215yds. Deer stood on its hind legs and fell. Didn't make a move. Not to mention, they seem to group well. Those shells for my .25-06 are $35-40/box. I always keep all casings when I buy factory ammo with the intentions of reloading. I know for targets and such, there is no reason to use those ballistic tips, so what do you guys prefer for target shooting vs. actual hunting?
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Old 09-07-2007, 07:14 AM   #12
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Cletus, do you do all your shooting out at hotwells?
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Old 09-07-2007, 07:55 AM   #13
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Not wanting to start any arguements, but I got into cowboy shooting a few years ago with a friend.
He was really hot for a Dillon press and I bought a Hornady Progressive. While they are both very nice and perform well, after a while he was regretting his choice.
The Dillons cost a LOT more to set up for different calibers. If you ever anticipate reloading other calibers than what you now have I would recommend shopping around.
I'm just offering another alternative, I'm happy with mine, others prefer something else.
The most important things to remember are to look at the whole picure. Ease of changing calibers, cost, time to set up, features (like auto-case feeds or double charge warnings) all these things are important. Some features are included with one brand, others charge extra.
They all have their good and bad points.
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Old 09-07-2007, 08:53 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bumblebee View Post
Not wanting to start any arguements, but I got into cowboy shooting a few years ago with a friend.
He was really hot for a Dillon press and I bought a Hornady Progressive. While they are both very nice and perform well, after a while he was regretting his choice.
The Dillons cost a LOT more to set up for different calibers. If you ever anticipate reloading other calibers than what you now have I would recommend shopping around.
I'm just offering another alternative, I'm happy with mine, others prefer something else.
The most important things to remember are to look at the whole picure. Ease of changing calibers, cost, time to set up, features (like auto-case feeds or double charge warnings) all these things are important. Some features are included with one brand, others charge extra.
They all have their good and bad points.
The man has a point. Dillon press does cost quite a bit more, and unless you're doing a lot of shooting, you're better off with a Lee or RCBS progressive press. I used to shoot quite a bit, and mostly in .45ACP so the Dillon was a good choice for me at the time. Honestly, it cost around $1400 (Tumber, Media, Scale, Digital Caliper, Media Separator, etc...) for me to start up initially, but you can really get started for around $700-$800 on a Dillon Press if you don't buy all the Dillon accesories because they are pricey. With other brands, you're looking at half if even that.
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