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Old 12-23-2010, 08:24 PM   #1
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Default Reloading...How much to be worth it?

From the perspective of possible future SHTF, I'd like to at least think of reloading.

From the sticky at the top, the Sinclair video makes it clear that one could reuse brass as many times as to the 4th trim and slightly beyond. So if one has high quality factory ammo, one could collect (hoard) primers, bullets, and powder to reload many times over.

Without cheaping out too much, how much would it cost someone to go from zero to fully outfitted reloader? And I'm counting all the tools and little accessories and books and such. I would only want to reload for .45acp and 5.56/.223, but I'd probably want to be outfitted for 1000 rounds of .45 (no brass) and 10,000 rounds of 5.56/.223 (no brass).

Rough numbers, anybody? I'm very interested in whether it would be worth it from a preparation-type perspective.

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Old 12-23-2010, 08:40 PM   #2
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if your looking at it from a shtf perspective 45-70 is prolly the way to go or some other straight wall blackpowder based cartridge. can always go back to using black powder when modern propellents disapear 70 grns of bp under a 45 cal lead bullet.

bottleneck cases complicate the reloading process and usually have severely decreased case life when compaired to straightwall. in shtf situation time and energy will be precious commodities. the less time you spend loading the better.

shtf i would look at single stage or even a hand held press easier to cart around few parts to go wonky.

ball park prices i would guess:

rcbs rock chucker single stage3-500$ depending on accessories.

dillon xl 650 progressive 1000-1500$ depending on accessories. caliber conversions and spare parts raise the price a bit

bout the price of a higher end 1911 at worst. im not even gonna guess at component prices as in powder primers bullets

a progressive loader can easily crank out 500+ per hour set up time once you have done it a few times about 30-45minutes. single stage your looking at around 50-75 rounds an hour this includes case prep time. the most time consuming portion is priming and powder charge with single stage.

single stage disadvantage is more human error in loading creeps in

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Old 12-23-2010, 09:31 PM   #3
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You can get an RCBS Rockchucker package that gives you just about everything you need to get started except the bench and reloading
manual(s). The package comes with a Speer reloading manual, though.

Then you need your brass, primers, bullets, and powder. If you're talking about mass loading for the Apocalypse, you probably won't be too picky about the brands of any of those. But if you're going to have fun along the way in mixing up different recipes, if you're like me, you're going to want to try different bullets and powders at the very least. Then, you'll also have to buy a manual for each brand of bullet you're going to load.....no winging it.

You'll also need a set of reloading dies for each caliber that you plan on loading.....about $35 a set.

I load .223, not the .45 that you mentioned. But I will say that, of all the calibers I load (six right now), the .223 is by far the least expensive.

You can do the math on the previously mentioned items by going to Midway and getting prices, or someplace similar.

I've only been handloading for about six months now, but it's safe to say that I'm obsessed with it. It is so much fun. There are others who know a lot more than I do that can give you better insight than me.

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Old 12-23-2010, 10:14 PM   #4
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JonM,

My goal isn't to have a reason to get another firearm. I'm not asking the question, "What gun for SHTF?" in this thread. Just looking for reloading info.

Today I have an AR and a 1911, so those are the ones I'd reload for.

lon, again a great response! At $1500 I may need to wait a little while longer, but I love the idea of a single set. At MidwayUSA, a master set by RCBS is about $300. I would think $500 would get me started, right?

Then materials...

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Old 12-23-2010, 10:44 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CHLChris View Post
At MidwayUSA, a master set by RCBS is about $300. I would think $500 would get me started, right?

Then materials...
definately. i started with a very similar package loading 20 years ago. your gonna have fun
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Old 12-23-2010, 10:45 PM   #6
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I can load 45acp for about $0.17 each which is just under 1/2 what you pay for Federal Champion at Walmart. That doesn't count brass, I've come across it here and there and saved enough from my pre-reloading time.

You can get a lee 4 hole turret kit which gives you everything you NEED to get started for around $150. You'll soon be buying other things to make it easier. I know this isn't the best press in the world but I've loaded thousands of rounds with mine with no problems. If you only load 45ACP, you'll have paid for your press and materials after 1,000 rounds.

Having that out of the way, I do want a better press but I've been loading on this one for 3 years and see myself loading on it for years to come or when I can afford a better press. It has saved me money and gotten me into the reloading world without breaking the bank.

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Old 12-23-2010, 10:47 PM   #7
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You need the basics of

Press
Manuals At least 2
powder measure
scale
Calibers
priming system (hand or on press)
dies
lube weather it is pad spray or something else
shell holders (for press)
reloading trays
Chamfer and deburring tool

That should get you going.

Depending on what you want to spend your money on. It get go from 300 to 500 up to 5000.

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Old 12-23-2010, 10:49 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CHLChris View Post

lon, again a great response! At $1500 I may need to wait a little while longer, but I love the idea of a single set. At MidwayUSA, a master set by RCBS is about $300. I would think $500 would get me started, right?
$1,500? Did I say that? If I did, I apologize. I would think about $500 would get you well on your way, Chris.
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Old 12-23-2010, 10:51 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cpttango30 View Post
You need the basics of

Press
Manuals At least 2
powder measure
scale
Calibers
priming system (hand or on press)
dies
lube weather it is pad spray or something else
shell holders (for press)
reloading trays
Chamfer and deburring tool

That should get you going.
All of those things come with the kit I got, except for the (1) manual, a caliper, dies.....and I think it came with one shellholder but I don't remember.
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Old 12-24-2010, 12:09 AM   #10
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If you want to know how much you might save, use this handy cost load calculator.

Handloading Cost Calculator

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