Prepper Forum / Survivalist Forum banner

1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
444 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Getting into reloading. I know, great timing. What is the best kit to start with? I want a kit that has everything I need equipment wise. I understand that components and dies come seperately. Any suggestions would be appreciated.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,797 Posts
Well how much money do you wanna spend?

Personally, I would suggest the Lee Classic kit. Its not the best but its plenty good and can last you a long while. The RCBS Rockchucker is better and more durably made but its a good bit more too. Both of these are single stage type presses and I would recomend going that route due to cost. Once you decide that reloading is your cup of tea then you can go out and get a set up with all the whistles and bells.

Honestly I started with a Lee hand press and got by for a good while with it. Its simplisity at its best too. I still have that baby after all these years but I have the newer breach lock one that I still use a lot in addition to my 4 bench mounted presses. Since then I have a RCBS press and I use electronic powder metering devices and I am able to crank out a good bit of ammo in a short time despite being a dinosaur and using single stage presses.

To get all of the stuff you will need your going to end up spending a good 200.00 or so bucks and a little more shortly afterwards for other accessories you will find that you need if you stay in the hobby long at all. Of course that means it will take some time before you see much in the way of savings on ammunition. But there is more too it than just that. Part of reloading is the ability to play around with your die settings, loads and what not and come up with a recipe that is the cats meow in your particular gun. Another part of it is when you go hunting the sense of satisfaction when you take a game animal with something you rolled on your own. Its especially great when you can find that load that make little itty bitty holes at very long distances on paper targets. When it all comes down to it, you probably wont save much at all cause you will find yourself shooting a lot more! Its also a great way to pass the time on those long cold winter days after huinting seasons over and its not warm enough for all those other outdoor activities we enjoy so much. The best part though is when this ammo drought hit, I was well stocked and its been aweful lonely at the gun range lately...a perfect time to do load development or just get in some practice without a bunch of yahoo's around to make it less than fun.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
444 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
LF, thanks for your input. I am more concerned with being able to stock up on ammo, and of course being able to shoot more than savings at this point! I saw that lee has an anniversary kit that seems to have everything I need, and at a great price. I was glad to see that an experienced reloader such as yourself gave them a thumbs up. Thanks again.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
436 Posts
Well the Rockchucker is an excellent press but it was more than I wanted to spend to start. I picked up a use Lee Pro 1000 and though I made some good ammo with it, it didn't match the way I load being too much going on at one time. I sold it and picked up a new Lee Classic Turret and later added a Lee Classic Cast both of which combined is cheaper than a new rockchucker or for that matter a Hornady and other brands. As for durability both will last you a life time if taken care of with little effort. Lee is much less expensive but not what I would call cheap junk as they work well and their dies are as good as any others dies out there. Some of their other things such as brass trimmers and specialty get mixed reviews from me. I load 9mm, 45 ACP, 45 Colt and 45-70 on the Lee Turret with black powder shot shells on the Lee Classic cast single stage as well as bullet lube/sizing and other heavy load items. If you decide on Lee here is about the best site to buy from https://fsreloading.com/ which is the cheapest prices and fast delivery.

The Lee Classic Turret will work as a single stage also by removing the indexing rod which would be a litte easier for a beginner. I do say avoid the Lee scale though it works and is accurate it can be a pain to set and read. I use an electronic scale a Hornady GS-1500 and a RCBS beam scale. Also a Harbor Freight digital caliper as a good caliper is a must have tool. You will also need to get some books such as the ABC's of reloading to start and read it before buying a lot. I also have others by Lee, Hornady, Lyman, Speer etc that when a new addition comes out I get it. I actually enjoy loading as much as shooting now. Below is pictures of my 2 presses mounted using Lee Bench plate system so it is very easy and quick to change from one press to another if you have limited bench space like I do.

Lee Classic Turret
IMG_0367_sm.jpg

Lee Classic Cast
Lee Classic Cast1_sm.jpg
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
Whatever reloading kit you buy, its not going to be your last.

A good single stage press is a great way to get into reloading, after a few months loading 100 rounds an hour you will get tired of it and dream of a progressive press. Then you'll end up buying a progressive press, and your reloading will go from 100 rounds an hour to 500+ rounds per hour.

Right now is not the time to buy reloading supplies. Power and primers are very expensive and not available. I'd suggest continue to shoot, save your brass and get friends and family to save their brass. After a few months and your levels of brass increase, buy some case prep supply's. Good tumbler, lube. Start sorting your brass and cleaning it, then once you have several hundred rounds buy the equipment and begin reloading.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
436 Posts
Now may be the best time to start.....collect primers, bullets and powder now while you can get it.....no use having a pile of brass you cannot do anything with. With current climate and the back door deals going on in D.C. I have no doubt reloading supplies and gun parts may be effected next with no warning.....obama does not care how many people may become unemployed in the gun business....he will glady put them on his welfare program.....IF supplies at some point get back to normal ?? from all I have found it may be mid year or later.....Obama's jack boot's are stocking heavy....so should you....
Good luck with that since supplies of primers, powder have pretty much gone or shown out of stock regardless of where you look. Cast bullets are also getting hard to get and I just ordered some jacketed bullets from Delta Precision and they are 6 to 8 weeks behind of the demand. I just got my order for 1000 9mm 124 gr and 1000 230 gr 45 ACP both in FMJ for target practice.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
444 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for all if the feedback. I have been saving and cleaning brass for a while now. I have already read a couple of reloading books. I have also been shopping for the different components, and have a decent supply to get started. Just need the equipment. I think that I will truly enjoy this as I spend a lot of time in my garage puttering around aimlessly. Now, at least I can be doing something worthwhile. Plus looking forward to building up my own supply.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
436 Posts
Thanks for all if the feedback. I have been saving and cleaning brass for a while now. I have already read a couple of reloading books. I have also been shopping for the different components, and have a decent supply to get started. Just need the equipment. I think that I will truly enjoy this as I spend a lot of time in my garage puttering around aimlessly. Now, at least I can be doing something worthwhile. Plus looking forward to building up my own supply.
In that case decide on what you want to spend as well as maker and go for it. I'm limited to a small section of a home office (apartment size place) but even so I sure can still make more ammo that I can shoot and I shoot at least a few times a month.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
436 Posts
I can still get plenty of powder and primers.....bullets are getting thin.....As with anything else....you can either get it done or sit around talking about it......might be suprised what you can find if you look hard enough.....
Man you are one of the lucky ones then. I live in Lexington KY and all the local suppliers are pretty much picked clean of my powders which are as follows.
Unique, Bullseye, Reloader 7, HP-38, TiteGroups, Clays, Universal, Lil'Gun, Trailboss, IMR 3031, IMR 4198 and black powder, various makers. Now I have a rather large stock at the moment but went just to see and both the local gun shop and Sportsmans Warehouse in my area was also pretty much picked clean. As for Primers all I find now are the 209 shotshell which I also use but have plenty off at this time as I do small pistol, large pistol and large rifle. Cast bullets not a problem yet however jacketed are slow shipping due to large backlogs as I don't buy bullets in the stores but only on line. I can't afford to pay the prices for the store stocked stuff as it is just too expensive for target loads. Self Defense ammo I buy factory load only at this time but have enough on hand for the two calibers I use in pistol and the one for shot gun.

Oh and I don't buy powders and primers on line due to the high hazmat fees for a few pounds or less. This all changed since the shooting in the school almost overnight as even Bud's gun shop (local also for me) is pretty much picked over of both ammo and guns. Luckily I've been stocked up for a good years supply so can wait out the current panic buying which will pass however I do expect prices to go up with that like it did last time.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
855 Posts
I like Lee equipment, I think you get a lot for your money with it. As was said previously if you buy a Lee kit, upgrade the scale which in my opinion is the week link of the kit. I own RCBS equipment also and the Rockchucker press is damn near indestructible, I wouldn't trade mine for anything. Every piece in the RCBS rockchucker kit is a great piece of equipment but you'll pay for that quality. I can tell you that RCBS Customer Service is second to none, I have ordered several parts from them and they have never charged me for any of them (including a part for a primer swaging set that I got used from a buddy and was missing pieces). I also have an older Lyman All American turret press which has been absolutely awesome and it's a nice compromise between a single stage and a progressive, these can be found used on ebay when you want to upgrade from your single stage operation (keep the single stage for resizing).

Components seem to be hit or miss, some areas there's no issue with dealers having quite a bit in stock, but areas like mine where there weren't many people selling components to start with have been wiped out. Online retailers have been wiped out for the most part, primers and powder are very hard to come by. Powder Valley has some powders in stock but not a lot and as of today they are working on getting orders from 1/8 out the door. My powder order isn't supposed to ship until 2/22 and I ordered on 1/22. I wouldn't expect this drought to end until sometime this fall (maybe). Start hitting gun shows for components, get their as soon as they open the doors on the first day, be the first one in line if you can and you may be able to score a little bit of stuff.

-Infidel
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,797 Posts
I own RCBS equipment also and the Rockchucker press is damn near indestructible, I wouldn't trade mine for anything. Every piece in the RCBS rockchucker kit is a great piece of equipment but you'll pay for that quality. I can tell you that RCBS Customer Service is second to none, I have ordered several parts from them and they have never charged me for any of them (including a part for a primer swaging set that I got used from a buddy and was missing pieces).
Ill second that one! You might be able to wear a RCBS press out in a couple of decades but if you break it, it dang sure took some major effort on your part! Its the press I use when I am forming cases for a couple of wildcat cartridges I shoot as it well up to the task at hand. I also like the fact that I can easily get RCBS to make a custom set of dies for me if they arent already making dies for a wildcat I want to load for. The biggest reason I own 3 Lee bench presses is becuase I got all three gently used and a 12 gallon tote full of accessories including a case tumbler for 100.00 fun dollars. Couldnt beat that deal with a big stick I tell ya. While not nearly as "heavy duty" as the RCBS press, I agree that if you take care of them they will work well enough to pick up the check.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
855 Posts
It'll take longer than a couple of decades. I had my father's rockchucker here for years, I sold it to a buddy from work looking to get into reloading on the cheap. That press has been cranking out ammo since the 60's and it's still going strong. I think his kids will be using that press some day.

-Infidel
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,797 Posts
I know, I bought mine well used back in the early 80's and it is still kicking butt and taking names!!! God only knows how many thousands of rounds I have loaded not to mention its previous owner and bullets I have swaged with it. Its about as close to indestructable as anything man kind has ever made! I am sure after I am long gone my little Nephew will be saying the same thing I said here!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
I'm gonna suggest the lee turret press when me and my father started that's what we got into and love it. It takes some time to get the dies diled in but once they are u can pull the indexing rod for single stage if needed . You can also pull the turret out with all your dies set to change to a different caliper that way once the dies are set u never need to remove them. I would expect to spend around 400 up front to get started with the press and dies , bullets, timers exc. buy powder and primers local the hazmat fees for net ordering are normally higher then the items themselves. Also check out gunbroker.com for brass.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
855 Posts
Turret presses are a great compromise between single stage and progressive presses. I use a turret press for all handgun ammo and .223 Rem ammo. I use a single stage for all my 6.5x55 Swede and .280 Rem simply because I load them in smaller batches I also do all .223 resizing on the single stage.

Hazmat fees can be minimized by buying in bulk, $27.95 on a pound of powder is excessive but if you buy 2 8lb jugs then it's not as bad. Powder valley says you can order up to 48lbs of powder on one hazmat charge adding about $.58 per pound to the price of the powder, of course most people can't afford 48lbs of powder but if you and a couple of buddies can get together and order all at once that'll help quite a bit.

-Infidel
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
85 Posts
I have been using a Lee Pro 1000 for year for pistol ammo...You will have to have patience but in time you will be cranking out ammo. I also have a Lee C Press for .308 and as I recall both the Pro 1000 and C press were Anniversary Kits.

Biggest deal is to take your time, check all powder measurements twice, maybe 3 times and for fun one more time. Learn the feel the machine makes on each stage...Seating Primers is a Big Deal....Check, check and check again and if you have a question toss the round unto a coffee can to be taken apart later.

Patience is a virtue when it come to reloading......There is no fix to a bad reload after it goes bang.

Karsten
 
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
Top