Getting Started and Costs

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by diggsbakes, May 30, 2010.

  1. diggsbakes

    diggsbakes New Member

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    Alright. I've read the books, watched some videos and practiced on some friends equipment, now I'm ready to set up for myself. I built a killer reloading/gun working bench and now I just gotta tool up and equip myself with components.

    Here is the problem:

    After the press, scale, measure, dies, components, trimmers, etc. the total tab at midwayusa was about $600.

    That wouldn't be so bad, but I'm getting into an AR build right now and the ol' lady is freakin'. "We can never save any money cause of you" type crap.

    Here's the question:

    How can I bring the start-up cost down a couple hundred bucks??? I just started with Lee equipment and two sets of dies.

    Any help is much appreciated. I really want to get going.
     
  2. Fuzzball

    Fuzzball New Member

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    It would help if we knew what cartridges you are loading for, at what expected volumes and a little of what you are considering buying that ran the potential start-up costs so high. You had to add a lot to most Lee presses and a couple of die sets to reach $600!

    But, perhaps the first step is checking prices at Graff and Son instead of Midway.

    And little momma may be right, perhaps you should slow down a bit? ;)
     
    Last edited: May 30, 2010

  3. JonM

    JonM Moderator

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    if you want to start cheap buy a single stage used press. you practically have to beat on a single stage with a hammer to damage them.
     
  4. Dzscubie

    Dzscubie New Member

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    Ummmm, keep the reloading stuff and get rid of the wife? Just a suggestion. :cool:
     
  5. diggsbakes

    diggsbakes New Member

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    Just .38, .357 and .44 mag to start with. Also that $600 included everything I listed (maybe re-read?) when I listed components, that included bullets, primers, powders, calipers, trimmers. Basically everything I'll need to do a proper job.

    Also I went with the turret press, because my schedule is so tight that production is a must, so I can 100% a cartridge, simply switch turrets for the next caliber.

    This is how a colleague of mine does it and after spending some time with his equipment, I'm comfortable and confident that this is the way I will begin.

    Any useful help?
     
  6. 50of4064

    50of4064 Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

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    So what do you have at present, some details would be nice,IE: press, dies, primer tools. that way we can suggest what you may need additionally. you know what you have and we don't, and it would be presumptuous for me to guess what COMPONENTS entail
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2010
  7. diggsbakes

    diggsbakes New Member

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    All in shopping cart, ready for checkout:

    Don't think I can be much more clear, so here ya go:

    Lyman case tumbler, case trimmer, powder measure riser, case lube pad, 4 die set for each .38/.357 and .44 mag, shellholders, priming pocket cleaner, sizing lube, Lee powder measure, Lee safety small and large priming feeder, Lee 4 hole turret press w/ auto index deluxe kit, 6" caliper, electronic powder scale, primers, powders and bullets.

    Seems to be just the basic crap right? I'm familiar with the process and know I will need this junk to reload at my desired pace.

    I was hoping someone had an answer to spending so much, but if not, It is, what It is!?!?!
     
  8. 50of4064

    50of4064 Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

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    Sounds like you have everything to get started, you just have to shop around for deals on the consumables either on line or in your area, Welcome to the world of reloading, there are plenty of " YOU REALLY NEEEEED THIS " out there and in time you will settle in and really tailor your need's and what works for you!
    Can't help with the woman issue, your on your own with that one!
    ( why do you think we reload LOL)

    If the time spent reloding was not at the top of your priority list, then JONm hit it on the head. to reduce the cost by $300-$400 you could have picked up used and saved, but I understand the bug you have been bitten with and been there and done that, you are not alone!
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2010
  9. diggsbakes

    diggsbakes New Member

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    Thanks for your input. I guess I'll just have to lay down the cash. :( It'll be worth in the long run I know.

    As far as used equipment, hell. . .the Lee turret press was only $109!

    As far as the woman. She has a point. . . an AR build, new AK, always on the prowl for a new wheelie. Maybe if she found a hobby it wouldn't be an issue, but oh well! :)
     
  10. spittinfire

    spittinfire New Member Supporter

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    Jump on ebay, there is always good reloading equipment going there.
     
  11. 50of4064

    50of4064 Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

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    Might I suggest that she look into shoes, it seems to have made my wife complete, and I repeat: why do you think we reload?:rolleyes:
     
  12. diggsbakes

    diggsbakes New Member

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    Plenty of shoes to go around my friend, but that will never allow total fulfillment. I think she'd love shooting if she just tried. . . :(
     
  13. UnderFire

    UnderFire New Member

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    diggs,

    For $109 what did the Lee Turret Press include in the box?
    I'm asking because my local dealer has a Lee Turret Press new in an open box for 60 bucks. Inside the box it's just the press & handle, but new unused. No plastic bottles, etc. What came in your box?
     
  14. bizy

    bizy New Member

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    Dude You got a deal

    I payed alot more than that. I did however tool up during that ammo scare a couple years ago.
     
  15. 11B-101ABN

    11B-101ABN New Member

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    I think this guy is going to be disappointed. With the component price increases and shortages of the past couple of years, and depending on how much he shoots, the monetary savings between new and reloading ammo is going to be minimal if any. With the exception of the AR he is building, NONE of his weapons uses a military caliber, so brass is always going to be a premium, (no once fired mil surplus). The .44 and .357 are both powder hungry, he's buying bullets at probably 12+ cents a pop rather than making them at 2 cents each. He is using a turret press because his schedule is tight but that gives him the ability to make mistakes 5 times faster also.
    My advice would be to forego buying any equipment until his schedule allows a better learning curve. Make his colleague his best friend and load there for a while longer, Then buy a little at a time...if he don't keep his wife happy, he's headed for a nasty divorce and all the stuff he bought will end up for sale anyway. Buy used is a good idea, but a person needs at least some experience to know the cream from the crap. Be wary of ebay...I went through 21 pages of reloading equipment today, and most of the prices exceed that of new equipment, and then you have to pay shipping.
    But advice is cheap...Right?
     
  16. opaww

    opaww New Member

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    Reloading is costly to start, But if you start by geting good used equipment and adding a little as you go it does not seem so bad.
     
  17. Bigdog57

    Bigdog57 New Member

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    I have the older three-hole Lee turret press and love it - I am up to 17 turrets now, so changing calibers is a "plug&play" proposition. But, it IS more expensive on initial setup! I loaded for ten years on my old Lee Single-stage.
    To really cut production costs, you need to find range-brass (a HUGE cost of our loads is the brass!) and get into leadcasting - but that has a somewhat steep setup cost too.

    Get the little lady a nice pink AR of her own, and a LadySmith revolver. If she likes shooting, she will begin to understand the drive to 'roll our own'!
     
  18. Rick1967

    Rick1967 Well-Known Member

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    I started out with a hand press from Lee. My wife bought me an RCBS Rock Chucker, a powder measure, scale, and tumbler for Christmas. I have gotten a lot of stuff at yard sales. You can get good deals at pawn shops too.

    My question is, if you are short on time, how much time do you get to shoot? I spend more time reloading than shooting. And I shoot a lot. Are you really able to shoot enough to be worth the investment?
     
  19. diggsbakes

    diggsbakes New Member

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    This "kit" includes.

    Turret Press with Auto Index, Auto Disk Powder Measure, Safety Scale, Primer Pocket Cleaner, Cutter and Lock Stud and Chamfer Tool.

    Sorry for the delayed response. I've been out of town for a few days. :)
     
  20. diggsbakes

    diggsbakes New Member

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    I shoot probably 4 hours per week. Usually burn up 100 rounds per gun and usually take 3+ guns. The range is about 20 or so miles out side of town and I usually hit the pistol berms when they are pretty vacant, so I get down to business.

    The reloading would also give me a way to spend time productively at the house during family down time. Rather than sitting here at the comp, TV or reading (although the last one usually involves guns too ;))

    As far the the brass question. I have a source for (almost free) .44 mag brass and .357 brass is always sitting around on the grounds at the range, so I shoot/scavenge my supply of brass up.