New to Reloading 9mm advise

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by cghamm117, Nov 26, 2012.

  1. cghamm117

    cghamm117 New Member

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    I am new to reloading, I bought a lee turret press, and dies in 9mm, and a lee manual. I will provide a link to the kit that I bought (not including dies and book). I was wondering what else would be advised to get started. As of right now I am just getting started and going to load 9mm. Also I was kinda looking for some advise on powder, bullets, and casing, primers. I want to start I think with enough supplies to make 500 or 1000 for now. How much powder, what would you recommend? Recommendations on bullets (just fmj plinking for now), primers, casings? And where can I find this, I appreciate the input.

    http://www.cabelas.com/product/Lee-...turret+press&WTz_l=Header;Search-All+Products
     
  2. cghamm117

    cghamm117 New Member

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    After looking into my own question, would I have been better off going with the classic turret, kit shown in the link, looks like the one I purchased does not have the priming tool, and is not of the same quality. I am on a budget so if you believe the one purchased is good enough that would be great, but if I shouldve bought the other, I can happily send this one back for the other.

    http://www.cabelas.com/product/Lee-...turret+press&WTz_l=Header;Search-All+Products
     

  3. Pjj342

    Pjj342 New Member

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    Im in the same boat you are, but havnt gotten my kit yet. So, im getting all the info I can in order to make my first 500rds.

    You can get your bullets and cases online for a decent price, depending on where you look. Googling '9mm reloading brass' or '9mm (.355)reloading bullets' will get you the top sites they will be found. Also, search things like 'cheap 9mm brass' and you can find even more sites that were posted on forums.

    Where primers and powder comes in, I would tell you to find a local shop and buy your explosive components there. Say you order 4lbs of powder and 1000primers from a shooting website. They ship your order seperately, giving you two shipping charges, and two $20 hazmat fees. Unless you are getting alot and know you are getting a deal over a local place, online powder/primer buying is not the way to go.

    Also, being new to reloading, I would like to ask how much powder to buy for the first 1000rds, and how far does 4lbs of medium volume powder go?
     
  4. Overkill0084

    Overkill0084 Active Member

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    Bullets: I use mostly cast and Rainier plated. If you have an OEM Glock, skip the cast bullets for now. For Bulk FMJ, see:
    https://www.montanagoldbullet.com/pricelist_order.php
    http://www.precisiondelta.com/product.php
    There are others that are similar I just can't remember them right now.

    Brass: Pick it up from the places you shoot, assuming they don't have a problem with it. 9mm brass has to be the easiest to obtain, it's friggen everywhere. I bought new 9 mm brass once, and that was for a specific purpose. For plinking ammo, it doesn't really matter.

    Primers: I don't really shoot enough to bulk order them at this point. If you can source them locally for around $30 to $35 per brick, that should do it for now. You can decide later if bulk ordering is for you.

    Powder? I use Bullseye for my 115 gr plinking loads. Unique for the 147s. HS-6 for the full steam JHP loads. AA#5 does well too. Win231/HP38 is another popular powder. I've been meaning to try Power Pistol. Look in your manual and pick something from the middle of the road as far as burn rate is concerned.
    IMHO, for just starting out, I would stay away from the faster burning end of the spectrum until you get comfortable with the whole process. Bullseye/Red Dot/Titegroup and similar fast powders are less tolerant of mistakes than say Win 231/HP38. My Lee powder measure didn't really work well with Unique, so I'd give that pass for the time being.
    For a Noob, starting out, Win231/HP38 & AA#5 are my top recommendations. There are probably a number of others in that operating range, but those are the one's I can think of right off the top of my head. I wouldn't start buying bulk quantities of powder until you get settled into your process and decide what powder is worth a long term commitment. If you don't shoot a lot or pick the wrong stuff for your needs, an 8 pound can of pistol powder will last forever.

    Oh, buy another manual or two. The Lee is OK, but one can't have too much load data. If nothing else, take a look at those all one caliber reloading books. They are reprints from the other manuals, but they provide a diverse set of sources for comparison.
    http://www.amazon.com/Complete-Relo...qid=1353954954&sr=1-2&keywords=9+mm+reloading
    The Lyman 49th Edition is a good source. So too, is the Lyman Cast Bullet handbook once you start playing with cast to any degree.

    Oh, FYI- 9 mm is going to be the hardest caliber to really see a significant savings from reloading, since it's the cheapest to buy. So don't be disappointed when those savings aren't as much as you would have liked.
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2012
  5. cghamm117

    cghamm117 New Member

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    As for now im shooting out of a M&P . I will look into the slower burning powders and buy them and primers probably locally, did not think about the hazmat issue. And as for 9mm i know I wont save money with 9mm, but I was picking reloading up now as kind of a hobby, but my main goal is to be able to do larger loads and maybe perfect ammo for better accuracy. I will look into another book as well.
     
  6. Overkill0084

    Overkill0084 Active Member

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    Yeah, the Hazmat is a bummer, it kills a lot of savings for those who aren't shooting 1000rds per week. Can't speak for other areas, but local retail prices vary wildly around here, so shop around. I can get primers cheaper in one store but powder prices are just silly there, so I go elsewhere. Also, if you are a member of a gun club or similar, (or just a large group of friends who reload) check amongst the members to see if there are any group buys going on. Big savings if you can piggyback on a group buy of powder & primers.
    By the time I got around to reloading 9 mm, I was already doing several other calibers, so it was just a matter of buying the dies and consumables. You can save money, just not as much as say .45acp or .44 mag. With 9 mm the heavier your bullets, the better your savings. El Cheapo bulk115 gr ammo is everywhere. 124 stuff is a bit less common and costs noticeably more. 147 gr ammo, while not exactly rare, isn't all that common, and goes for noticeably more $.
    Enjoy.
     
  7. cghamm117

    cghamm117 New Member

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    Thank you for the responses, I meant to ask and this will most likely be one of those questions that is personnel preference. But what grain 9mm would any of you suggest reloading.
     
  8. robocop10mm

    robocop10mm Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

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    I cast my own bullets (125 gr RN and 125 gr RNFP). My bullet cost (the most expensive part) is near zero. I, too, shop around for powder and primers. I have a store in Houston 2 1/2 hours away that is WAY cheaper than anyone local for primers. It is 1/2 mile from my mom's house, so I stop in every time I go visit mom. Powder is a little cheaper locally so I tend to stock up in Houston on primers and get powder as I need it locally.
     
  9. nitestalker

    nitestalker New Member

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    Overkill,where in Ogden are you paying such high powder prices? Sportmans Warehouse on Riverdale Rd. is about average. Cal-Ranch is not that bad. Impact Arms is high. Primers at Cabelas In Lehi are average. The Reloading store in North Ogden is a little high. Smith and Edwards is high. You can find powder prices around Weber Co. that are not that bad.
     
  10. Overkill0084

    Overkill0084 Active Member

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    Smith & Eddy's primer prices are pretty good. Their powder prices are simply too high. The cast bullets they carry are quite reasonable, for retail.
    Sportsman's primer prices seem ok... when they have what I need in stock. That happens less & less these days. Powder there is reasonable, probably about as good as your likely to find around here.
    I didn't know Cal Ranch had reloading supplies. Must investigate.
    Impact doesn't carry much. I do wish I'd spent more money when they were clearing out their primers for like $25 per brick. Their cast bullet prices are just sad.
    There's a reloading store in North Ogden? Did not know that.
    Cabela's can kiss it. I have yet to see anything there that I can't get somewhere else cheaper.
     
  11. redscho

    redscho New Member

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    No one mentioned pwder scales. I find they are good insurance that your (my) Lee auto powder loader is dropping the correct load.

    Rough rule of thumb, 1 lb of powder will give you 1000 rounds for 9 mm or 38 Spl.
     
  12. Overkill0084

    Overkill0084 Active Member

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    The Lee Kits have a scale included. I found the Lee scale frustrating, but it will do the job. I ended up buying a Redding after a while.
     
  13. locutus

    locutus Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I've been loading 9MM for several decades.

    I've finally settled on a "standard" practice load about 10 years ago.

    Military surplus cases
    Remington 115 FMJ bullets
    Remington # 1 1/2 standard small pistol primers
    Hodgdon HS-6 powder.
    My powder charge is +p+ so I won't post it.

    Chronograph velocity from my SIG P226 is 1350 FPS.
     
  14. Rick1967

    Rick1967 Well-Known Member

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    I cast a 147 grain semi wad cutter. I use it for 38 special and for 9mm. I use Titegroup powder for just about every pistol caliber from .380 to 44 mag. You can pick up a Lee 6 cavity bullet mold for about $36 bucks from Midwayusa.com. The handles are another $12 or so. You can get a melting pot and pouring laddle pretty cheap. For a little more you could get a 20 pound pot with a bottom pour spout. For not a lot more than that one time bullet purchase you could buy everything you will need to cast your own. I could cast 1000 bullets in an evening.
     
  15. Dragonheart

    Dragonheart New Member

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    I have been hand loading for over 50 years so I will pass on a few tips. First, not to step on any toes, but there are a lot of guys out there cramming a bullet in a case and if it goes bang and the live to see another day all is well. So be cautious of the advice you get on these sites because you don't know the level of experience the poster has. If you are loading for a Glock with a standard factory barrel stay away from lead bullets. The Glock's polygonal rifling will lead up rather quickly and is a pain to remove. Additionally, the leading can cause overpressure issues, which at worse will Ka-Boom. Can you shoot some lead, yes, but I think it's best not. Moly coated lead (black bullets) do not have the leading problem, give good accuracy and are reasonable in price. Plated bullets are another choice. For the best accuracy you will need to go with jacketed bullets, but realize Glocks are not target guns. The most economical bullet weight for a 9mm is 115 or 124 grain bullets. Bullseye, Unique, HP-38/Winchester 231 (identical powders) are all dirty powders. They perform well, but leave a mess in the gun, not to mention the smoke. IMR 4756 is one of the cleanest powders I have ever used. I would recommend it since you cannot double charge without overfilling the case. Go to a shooting range to pickup or buy once fired brass. Military brass will have a date on the head stamp and is not usable unless your remove the primer crimp, for that you need another tool. I perfer using Winchester primers. Unless you reload a lot or hang out with those that do you will not be able to take advantage of buying in bulk, so just look for the best local prices. As far as your equipment follow the manual in setting up your press & dies. A 9mm headspaces on the case mouth so you want to use a very light taper crimp. You most definitely need a good quality scale to adjust your powder measure and check often for consistent drops. If you consider loading maximum loads and I would not suggest it when first starting out because there is just too much you don't know, always weigh these charges. You will need a good dial caliper, not cheap Chinese crap, to measure the OAL (overall length) of the finished round. The rounds must be able to fit in the magazine, but the shorter they are, the higher the pressure and typically less accurate. Done properly, reloading can be rewarding hobby providing custom ammunition that fits your needs for recoil, accuracy and performance. However, unless you are shooting several thousand rounds a year you are not going to save any money factoring in your costs and figuring your time has some value.
     
  16. locutus

    locutus Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Some good points, dragonheart.

    A little tip I learned many, many years ago. If you don't have a caliper yet, you can set overall length on standard (not max) loads with a factory round of the same bullet weight.

    Examle: If you're going to load Hornady XTP 115 bullets, put a factory 115 XTP in the shell holder and adjust your seating stem to just touch it.

    Also, when selecting a powder measure, buy quality. I use Redding measures. They're pricey, but they hold calibration.

    After a few years of using Redding measures, I started weighing a charge every 100 rounds. They really are that good.:)
     
  17. cghamm117

    cghamm117 New Member

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    I appreciate the great advice, I will be getting in all my equipment soon and will be letting you all know how it all works out.
    Thanks.
     
  18. msup752

    msup752 New Member

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    I started out with a RCBS single stage press and added on. I like to reload so I still use the single stage press and reload all winter to shoot all summer.
    Some of the more useful additions to my reloading was stainless steel calipers as consistent sizes are key for accuracy and safety, a good accurate scale for accurate powder measurements, and my redding match grade powder drop.
    I will calibrate the Redding powder drops using a scale and lock the powder measure down. Then load the rounds, intentionally making them long and measure and adjust down until it is correct. I measure every twenty five or so for powder weight and length and adjust as needed. My powder drops have never been off but the length sometimes will be.
    I used Power Pistol for a while. It worked with my .40, .45, .357 sig, .38, and 9mm loads. It has quite a flash and smoke cloud though. I now have moved to VV 320 and only load .45 and 9mm. It is a fast burning clean and expensive powder that works well with heavy bullets. It is also quietest in suppressed weapons and uses very little powder by weight, but still fills the case enough to overflow on a double charge.
    I use Barnes copper plated bullets. 147 or 125 grain. They just bumped their prices to $105 per 1k, shipping included if buying direct from them. Both125 and 147 stay subsonic with VV 320 powder. That is key for firing suppressed.