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Looking at reloading

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Old 07-22-2012, 05:21 PM   #1
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Default Looking at reloading

I've been reloading 12 ga. shells for trap for a few years and no issues from that. Now that my kids are getting older and they love the longer range shots (and good at them) and with the fear of restrictions I've been getting a lot more into rifles and hand guns. I'm spending a slew on 223, 308, 7.62, 5.56, 45, 45 Long Colt, and 9mm. It's not uncommon for me to load up both kids and whatever they want to shoot and blow $100 in ammo in just a few hours. Plus as winter gets here, I'll need something to do to kill time when MI is covered in snow.

I read Tango's sticky here but some direct info for what's needed for the above stated rounds, how many shots can you get from a casing, what specific tools are needed, and anything else you experienced folks could pass along.

Thank you in advance.
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Old 07-22-2012, 05:49 PM   #2
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I been reloading Rifle Handgun and Shotgun for longer then i care to think about . It,s a lot of fun i can spend hours loading and i save a ton also .

First buy what you need once . By that i mean buy good stuff once .
If you shoot a lot of handgun a Dillion 550/650 is your best bet . For Rifles a good RCBS Rock Chucker and a very good scale i like the digital the best .

Also you can,t have enough loading manuals . Some you can get for free as any gun shop that sells reloading stuff will have manuals for free . But also buy loading guides and read them . Loading is fun and will save you a lot of money .
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Old 07-22-2012, 06:06 PM   #3
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I only load handgun and am a big fan of Lee Products. They are low cost and a lot of people will talk them down but I love them. I now have 2 Lee Press's.

My first kit was the 4 hole turrett kit from Cabela's. If you get this kit I would get a digital scale to go with it as I don't like the arm/beam scales. Get a tumbler kit, loading trays, dies. A good manual will be one of the most important things you will buy. I like the Hornady Manual or The Lee Manual myself. Once you get into it you will find other items you want after you gain experience. I got a rotary media separator which is worth it's weight in gold. I think my first kit, dies, scale, manual, tumbles, ammo boxes and loading trays were under $200 and I've probably saved $5,000 in ammo costs using it. Then I bought a Lee Load Master and have probably saved $10,000 in ammocosts with it over the years.
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Old 07-22-2012, 06:55 PM   #4
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The average 223 will last 8-10 loadings but you can keep annealing the necks and get 50+ loadings (annealing = heat treating). You need to get small rifle and pistol primers and large rifle and pistol primers. You can look at the manuals and buy bulk powder that will work in several calibers like Varget, H4895 for 223 & 308 loadings. Some loads that work well in bolts won't always work well in semi autos. I have found powders that do work for both in my mini 14 and Savage bolt 223 also works in my brothers AR.

Get up to date manuals with the latest powders and loadings, I bought a Hornady book to have the latest 6.8 spc loads, my Nosler did not have, it is always time to keep current.

I have a Lee Pro1000 for 9mm and 40 S&W but use my Lee Turret press for all rifle loads. You can interchange brands of dies, I use Lee, RCBS, and Hornady on the turret press.

If you have seval shooters that really love the sport, buy in bulk to save the most $$$ and keep a look out for deals at pawn shops and local stoes.
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Old 07-22-2012, 08:49 PM   #5
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depends a lot on the cartridge itself as to how long they last. bottleneck cases tend to have shorter lifespans due to the brass needing to be worked more. annealing as stated above reduces that wear and tear. some cartridges like 45acp 9mm and other straightwall pistol brass seem to be nearly indestructable. ive got a lot of 45acp that have been in use since the late 80's.

a single stage press is great for small quantities but loading in bulk i HIGHLY recomend a dillon xl650. it takes a lot of the grunt work out of loading and case prep. when your loading thousands of bottleneck rifle brass you have to do a LOT of case prep. just removing the handling of the brass during the sizing procecess is huge with an autoindexing casefeeding progressive machine.

i like progressives for large batches simple because i dont have to handle the brass much.
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Old 07-23-2012, 04:15 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by KeysKelly View Post
I only load handgun and am a big fan of Lee Products. They are low cost and a lot of people will talk them down but I love them. I now have 2 Lee Press's.
I have used Lee products since 1972. Never had a problem and would always recommend them.
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Old 07-23-2012, 05:35 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by CourtJester View Post
'how many shots can you get from a casing, what specific tools are needed,
For bottle-necked cases, I use the Lee neck only sizing die as to not overwork the case head, then anneal so the only part of the case getting worked, doesn't get brittle.
Then don't load cartridges with too powerful charge weights, overpressure is a case's worst enemy.
I have 30-06 and 30-30 cases that have been shot 70 times... a lot more shots with handgun cases.
...nuff said.
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