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Old December 14, 2005, 12:16 AM   #1
links0311
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how did you get started?

i am looking to get into handloading and reloading but i don't know where to start. is there a good starter kit out there? i am mostly interested in reloading 9mm and .44 mags since i shoot those the most. do you have a favorite book on reloading that you found helpful? how much should i look to spend as a hobby? thanks.

beau
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Old December 14, 2005, 12:49 AM   #2
MrGee
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the very best way to get started is know what your in for, i suggest you buy Lymans 48th edition reloading manul it has more info on all you'll need to know and its easy reading ... Midway has it i think still on sale for $17. . http://www.midwayusa.com/ it'll be the best bucks spent if you real intent to get started
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Old December 14, 2005, 05:27 AM   #3
kingudaroad
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ABC's of reloading is a geat place to start.9mm ammo is so inexpensive that it may not be worth it , but reloading for .44 mag is a must IMO.
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Old December 14, 2005, 09:20 AM   #4
Glock35JHP
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I have also thought about reloading. What about 30-06 and 40S&W would that be woth it?
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Old December 14, 2005, 09:34 AM   #5
deadin
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If you are just looking to save money, then it all depends on how much you shoot. If you shoot a lot, reloading for 30/06 is good. 40 S&W ???? As long as WallyWorld has the 100rd Value Paks of WWB it's pretty hard to make reloading cost effective.

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Old December 14, 2005, 10:01 AM   #6
Glock35JHP
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Saving money would be good, but also I thought it would be fun as well. That would give me the option in the future of getting some of the odd-ball calibers as my brother in law puts it.
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Old December 14, 2005, 10:41 AM   #7
deadin
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Now you're getting into, what I consider, the fun part of reloading!. Making loads for old obsolete cartridges, working up loads for accuracy, etc.
I find reloading a relaxing and satisfying passtime. I don't know if setting up for a chambering you will probably only shoot a few hundred rounds through can be cost effective, but, What the H, it's satisfying.

I originally started reloading 45/70 (Black powder) with an old Lyman 310 tong tool. I was complaining that it was really hard to size the brass. Then somebody asked me what kind of lube I was using. My answer was "Lube?". Anyway, Lee currently makes a version of the Tong Tool and their dies come with a powder dipper, so a scale/measure isn't needed. Needless to say, you aren't going to be able to "work up" loads with this setup, but it will get you started and give you an idea if you like it or not. The next addition should be a good scale. After that, there is an unending list of "things" to add, depending on which way you want to go. (I'm currently thinking about a chronograph )

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Old December 14, 2005, 10:57 AM   #8
Ruger4570
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I have been a reloading nut for 45 years now and started with a Lyman Tru-line Jr. I think it would be reasonable to look at Lee's products if you are just getting into it. They have an Anniversary set up that is somewhere under $70.00 I beleive and I think it includes a reloading book too. Lee isn't making top of the line equipment, but for a beginner it works fine. You can always upgrade later if you like. I would also say that some of Lee's stuff is as good as a lot of products out there and I use a bunch of Lee molds for casting with very good results. Reloading can save you money if you shoot enough especially when you get into some of the centerfire rifle loads that cost over a $1.00 apice over the counter.
Best of all, I like the relaxztion I get from reloading and the fun of seeing MY loads print small groups or dropping a deer. I don't think I have bought a box of factory loads in many years. Good luck with your reloading.
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Old December 14, 2005, 12:34 PM   #9
hivel37
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another option

Another option would be go to ebay and buy a better grade of used tools seperately instead of in kit form. The very basics are: press, dies, scale, loading block, funnel, etc. On second thought, just get a kit.
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Old December 14, 2005, 01:00 PM   #10
ocabj
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The reason I got started? .45ACP average price, $12 per 50. Not fun.

What I started with? RCBS Rockchucker kit.

You could go the eBay route and piece together a kit, but I think you are better off saving yourself the time and getting a kit straight up via Midway or some other online vendor. If you know someone with an C&R, have them order from Midway for you using their dealer discount. Mucho savings.
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Old December 14, 2005, 08:13 PM   #11
cobra81
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Lee Anniversary kit

I was in your exact shoes a few years back. The guy at my local gunshop suggested Lee's Anniversary kit, which I bought. He credited me the dollar amount of the Lee balance beam scale that came with the kit and applied it to a Hornady scale, which he said was better. I started loading for my 30/06, and since then I've added dies for my .30/30, .270, and Ruger .204 as well. I still use the press that came with the kit and it works well for me. I have had good success with the Lee dies, especially the factory crimp die that comes in the kit, but I have since acquired some RCBS and Hornady dies also.

Oh, did I mention I also got hooked on bullet casting along the way? That meant a melting pot, moulds, sizers, gas checks, and all sorts of neat stuff.

It was also about this time that I thought it would be fun to get into trap shooting, and of course I had to have a MEC 9000 reloader and all the stuff to reload shotgun shells.....I guarantee you if the economy tanks it won't be because I didn't do my part to keep cash in circulation. There is a guy at work whose wife won't let him talk to me anymore because somehow he always ends up with another gun after he spends time in my office.

But all in all, this is a great pursuit. Yes, it can get pricey, but it doesn't have to.....a man's just got to know his limitiations......I figure I don't drink (much), smoke, do drugs, gamble or chase women, so I'm entitled to at least one vice. Good luck, and most of all, be safe and enjoy.
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Old December 14, 2005, 08:26 PM   #12
cobra81
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Glock,
Do you mainly hunt with your '06, or are you also using it for target shooting? Reason I ask is the 30/06 is an extremely versatile round, and you can basically handload any type bullet for whatever application you need. For instance, I like to shoot light loads in my 30/06 so I can plink and target shoot as much as I like without getting beat up from the recoil of factory loads.
Shoot more, spend less, and not get a bruised shoulder; works for me. I've probably got around 300 pieces of brass in circulation, and I don't plan to ever buy another box of factory ammo. .30 cal. (.308) is by far the most widely available and diverse reloading bullet on the shelves of all the stores I've been in, so there's lot of selection for this caliber.
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Old December 16, 2005, 02:02 AM   #13
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"...thought it would be fun as well..." It is. And you'll be using better ammo. You won't necessarily save much money though. Not that reloading is about saving money. It's about using ammo tailored to your rifle.
Shooting factory ammo is like buying your suits off the rack. It fits, sort of, but it ain't the same as a suit made for you by a tailor.
Have a look at the RCBS Beginner's kits. Gives you everything you need less dies and shellholder.
Stay away from E-Bay. They're anti-firearm. And you have no idea what you're buying.
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Old December 17, 2005, 02:13 PM   #14
Glock35JHP
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Yeah my objective is not to save money. I would like to tailor some rounds for the '06 that sounds interesting. I mainly hunt with it but am known to take out the rifle on occasion to plink or hit some targets. I've wanted a .41Mag and from what I've read here reloading that is a must.
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Old December 20, 2005, 07:42 AM   #15
saands
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I've been reloading now for close to 20 years and I have a lot of Lee stuff. My take on Lee equipment is that the fewer moving parts something has, the better it is from Lee. I only own one set of dies that is not Lee (out of at least 20 sets) and that one was a gift! Their single stage presses have few moving parts and are quite robust - I also highly recommend them. I am SO glad that I have an RCBS scale as the Lee scale is pretty bad, IMHO, and I would suggest getting an alternate (for clarification, the Lee scale is very difficult to set up repeatably and, again in my opinion, is TOO easy to make a large mistake with). Lee's handheld priming tool is great. Lee's "Perfect Powder Measure" is far from "perfect," but it is quite inexpensive and DOES work pretty well with most powders that aren't too fine. Extruded powders work great in it (possibly better than most other measures), so seek out Vihtavuori pistol powders if you go that route and avoid fine ball powders (like AA#9) and the Alliant flake powders if you can.

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Old December 20, 2005, 09:07 PM   #16
Peter M. Eick
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About 26 years ago now, I started loading with a lee hand-die kit. I loaded 38 special (still have the kit) and 30/30 winchester. Worked well for many years because that is all I could afford and I liked to shoot. I taught me well.
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Old December 21, 2005, 12:51 PM   #17
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What Peter said, +1 Quantrill
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Old January 2, 2006, 02:21 PM   #18
DeltaWhiskey
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I got started using a Lee C frame press and a Lee Speed Die in .38 special, with the whole thing bolted to an old office desk in my living room. I was a bachelor then. I had a bunch of scrounged brass, some lead SWCs, primers, and some Hercules powder. Measured up with the lee dipper that came with the die. No way to clean or trim cases. It was a riot. I had the best time fumbling around and learning the basics. I was really proud when my first pitiful rounds actually worked and I shot something with them.

Reloading equipment situation is much better now (still using Lee and am happy with it!) and I have a designated facility to load in at the house. However, I do miss watching X-Files while rolling some up like I used to.
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