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Old October 31, 2012, 07:52 PM   #22
Misssissippi Dave
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Join Date: December 5, 2009
Posts: 1,407
As for reloading I probably don't keep my costs down nearly as much as I could. I prefer jacketed bullets for pistol and even revolvers loads. That raises the price to reload. I do load a fair amount of ammo each month all year long. It is the reason I use a progressive press. Many years ago I was able to produce the ammo I was going to shoot every other weekend on a single stage press and it did the job I needed it to do. There is nothing wrong with keeping the prices down or using a single stage press. Most dies will get the job done. Only after you have been loading a while will you probably notice the differences between different company's dies. Maybe there is a feature one makes that you really like over another. It doesn't mean that they both can't produce good quality ammo. It might be the setup is easier with one. That doesn't really even matter unless you have to keep changing things like the bullet type, depth etc. Some seating dies will allow easier cleaning and that could be important if you load only lead bullets. Loading only jacketed bullets and again it doesn't matter that much.

As you can see you can get really expensive or keep your costs down and still be able to reload your own ammo. As mentioned I'm not using the cheapest bullets (one of the more expensive componets) even with that I load better ammo than the cheapest ammo at Walmart. Even .45 ammo (50 rounds) costs me about $1 or so less than the cheapest 9 mm ammo at Walmart to load. 9 mm costs me about 6 to 7 dollars a box of 50 to load. Switching to cheaper bullets will reduce my costs. Since it is fun for me to reload I don't consider the cost of labor or things like that.

The reason I say it doesn't save you any money is simple. Say I was spending $40 on ammo during a range trip when I was buying factory ammo. I still shoot about $40 dollars worth of ammo for a range trip when reloading. It just turns out that I wind up shooting twice as much as I did before. I do like having my ammo made to what I like. I like accurate and fairly clean burning ammo that normally has a softer feel in recoil. I can make that but it is either very hard to find it in factory ammo or if you can find it the cost gets to be pretty steep. I sometimes like shooting .357 mag ammo. The cost of those rounds are quite high with 157 grain bullets. I can load them for a little less than I can .45 acp with JHP bullets.

Reloading is something to keep in mind. First find out how much you like shooting. If you are planning to only shoot a box of two a year through a pistol after the initial class you take than it doesn't make sense to consider reloading at all. Just buy factory ammo. If you are shooting a box or two a week than maybe a single stage press will serve you well. When shooting 500 or more rounds a week you really need to get into reloading and you will need a progressive press or at a minimum a turret press to keep you in ammo for that type of volume.

Just something to think about. See what you wants or needs are over a a period of time then you can make up your mind about reloading or not.
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