The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The Skunkworks > Handloading, Reloading, and Bullet Casting

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old February 10, 2001, 03:29 PM   #1
UltimaSE
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 12, 2000
Posts: 141

I just finished reading the nra guide to reloading. I had one question from it because I haven't seen much people post about this. The guide recommends that you resize and trim the brass as necessary, for some reason I thought this was more applicable only to rifle rounds. I'm wondering since I'm collecting the equipment that I'll need to start reloading bit by bit and the trimmer wasn't one of the things I've been looking for.

Also has anyone heard or have an opinion about a company names star's reloading presses? I'm looking at one, but I've never really even heard of it. Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks in advance.
UltimaSE is offline  
Old February 10, 2001, 03:48 PM   #2
dick w. holliday
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 13, 2001
Location: NC
Posts: 589
star reloader ect

i think star made progressive reloaders years ago-i'm not sure if they're still around-it would definitly pay to know especially if it uses powder bushings or other parts unique to their design. in regard to case trimmers--i don't trim pistol brass-i'm sure somebody does but shooting in automatic pistols generally limits the length of time i will have a piece of brass anyway-the ground just seems to gobble it up...if you're loading for rifles then trimming is needed..in some instances you can actually harm your rifle by shooting cases that are too long but not generally. i have three different machines to trim brass but i keep going back to my Lee trimmer-you just need to buy an inexpensive stem that determines the lenght of the casing when you get a new caliber. there is a good discussion about trimmers on AR15.com under reloading discussion...Dick
dick w. holliday is offline  
Old February 10, 2001, 04:04 PM   #3
Contender
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 10, 1998
Location: NY
Posts: 680
Generally speaking, Cases with shoulders tend to lengthen with repeated firings whereas, straight walled cases tend to resist this lengthening from firing. With the shouldered cases, the pounding against the shoulder area tends to work the brass case's material forward into the chamber throat area. With a straightwalled case, the exploding/expanding gases have a straight run right out of the cartridge case and on out the barrel. This is not to say that straight walled cases won't lengthen after repeated firings, some will, some won't at all. Follow the listed maximum and minimum case lengths allowed for the cartridge you are working with.

This all assumes that cartridge headspacing is correct to begin with.

I would also recommend trimming once fired and new brass to all uniform lengths before reloading. Even to just square up the case mouths, especially with cartridges you will be crimping.

For a minimum outlay, you could purchase some Lee trimmer pilots for trimming cases to a uniform length and for checking case lengths. These are very quick to use and you can chuck the case holder into an electric screwdriver for more speed. They are no lathe type trimmer but, will be perfectly suitable for your application being a new reloader. Save your money and later on if you decide, get a lathe type trimmer.

Sorry for the "book"

Have Fun and Be Safe.
Contender is offline  
Old February 11, 2001, 11:28 AM   #4
Contender
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 10, 1998
Location: NY
Posts: 680
With regard to the Star reloading press, you could try Magma Engineering. I know they bought out Star Machine Works and are currently manufacturing the Lubrisizer but I'm not sure if they are still making the Press. Send them an E-mail to inquire about it.



http://www.magmaengr.com/index.html


Have Fun
Contender is offline  
Old February 11, 2001, 11:32 AM   #5
Kenneth L. Walters
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 2, 1999
Location: flagstaff, arizona
Posts: 476
In the 1890's Winchester was using a very large progressive to make their ammunition. Elord Mott copied the design, downsized it considerably and brought it out in the very late 20's or early 30's as the Star Progressive, named after the Star pier in San Diego where it was made.

Star made progressives from about 1930 until Elord death maybe five years ago. I knew him. He hand assemblied every one they ever shipped up until his dealth. There is a new owner now but, well, he isn't doing anything with the company.

I use to collect progressives. Had one each of every one Star ever made, a straight line, a simple progressive, a universal (several), a pistol/223 machine and a rifle machine. Star produced about 500 units a year. The rifle machine was made at the Army's insistence to arm the locals in south asia. Rather rare.

Star also helped Dillon get started. His first product was the Super Star kit which converted a Star Universal pistol tool into a 223 reloader. Mike Dillon (who I also know) thanked his friends by trying to drive them out of business. With friends like Mike you don't need to many enemies.

Except for the few machines assembled after Elord's death, all Star's were beautifully made. A good condition used one should cost about $500 today. Also there were copies like the Phelps, CPM, Berdon, Dillon RL1000, a unit made in Australia and a fellow who scaled the design up to load 50 BMG.

Find a used Star and buy it. They are very good tools. Be sure, however, that it is in good working order and that you have the powder bars that you'll need.
Kenneth L. Walters is offline  
Old February 11, 2001, 04:47 PM   #6
Quantrill
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 28, 1999
Location: Arizona, USA
Posts: 725
Star

I bought a Star years ago from a police dept. that did not need it any longer. I used it for years and loaded thousands of rounds of ammo. Mine was NOT the universal model, it was for .38spec only. I thought I wore it out and it sat on my bench for another couple of years. Finally I called the phone number that was on the machine with an address in San Diego. I don't know who I talked to but they gave me another phone number in Northern California. There a man answered and said he was the last of the Star employees and that he would rebuild the reloader but I had to send it out for an evaluation and price. I did this and the price was under $200. He rebuilt it and shipped it back (shipping is expensive, this is a heavy machine). It is now restored and in use again and since I don't shoot as much 38 as I used to, it will probably last my lifetime. Back before Dillon went in buisness (Mike was still flying for TWA) the Star was THE machine to have. The last time price I recall seeing was $1100. If you have the opportunity to get one in good condition, do it. Quantrill
Quantrill is offline  
Old February 11, 2001, 06:33 PM   #7
9x45
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 14, 2000
Location: Southern California
Posts: 505
You don't need to trim pistol cases. And for today, get a Dillon 550 or better. The reason Starr is mentioned is because thats all there was 30 years ago in progressives.
9x45 is offline  
Old February 12, 2001, 01:21 AM   #8
UltimaSE
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 12, 2000
Posts: 141
I might be looking to maybe pick one up. However do any of you know if the press takes standard dies? And is there any way to tell if it is a universal press by looking at it?

Also Quantrill if it wouldn't be too much trouble if I do purchase this press I might trouble you for that northern california number just in case.

Thanks in advance.
UltimaSE is offline  
Old February 12, 2001, 08:19 AM   #9
Kenneth L. Walters
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 2, 1999
Location: flagstaff, arizona
Posts: 476
On the rim next to the shell plate a Universal will have little "taps" used to hold the cases in the proper distance. A simple progressive will not.

Some were made for 7/8x14 dies but they are VERY unusual. Also one of the dies, I can not remember which one, had to be machined a bit in order to fit. Finding such a machine would be all but impossible.

I don't remember if the pistol/223 or the rifle machine used regular dies but I think so. Fun old machines. Be careful about getting the right powder bar.
Kenneth L. Walters is offline  
Old February 12, 2001, 09:57 AM   #10
KP95DAO
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 30, 2000
Posts: 699
Trimming

Auto cases don't need trimming. Revolver cases should be trimmed if they aren't the same length. Rifle cases should be trimmed to the same length and then resized in RCBS X dies if your caliber is available. After resizing in the X die you should champher and deburr.
I use a X die for my Savage 10FP reloads and along with a Redding Comp. Seat die I get 3/4' 10 round groups.
KP95DAO is offline  
Old February 12, 2001, 09:59 AM   #11
Quantrill
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 28, 1999
Location: Arizona, USA
Posts: 725
Star

UltimaSE,
The phone number where I last contacted Star was 209-295-5000. The address is 17901 MiraVista Court
Pioneer,Ca 95666
where I sent my machine. By the way, he asked me what load I wanted to use and that he would make me a new powder bushing and he did. I was happy with the service and the work. Quantrill
Quantrill is offline  
Old February 12, 2001, 10:43 AM   #12
Kenneth L. Walters
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 2, 1999
Location: flagstaff, arizona
Posts: 476
Glad to hear that you got good service from the new Star owner. Do you know if he is just fixing old machines or is he actually making new ones? I would think that production of new ones would require the investment of some REAL money.
Kenneth L. Walters is offline  
Old February 12, 2001, 11:30 AM   #13
Bogie
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 5, 2000
Location: Job hunting on the road...
Posts: 3,827
Some folks will trim pistol cases in the event that they require a uniform crimp. Generally just used with the magnum calibres tho...

Best trimmer I've found is the Wilson. Sinclairintl.com has 'em. The Lee gizmos also work well when doing "bulk" ammo, but aren't adjustable.
Bogie is offline  
Old February 12, 2001, 02:59 PM   #14
Quantrill
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 28, 1999
Location: Arizona, USA
Posts: 725
star

Kenneth,
I beleive that he is just fixing and refurbishing old ones. I get the impression that this is a part time thing but he certainly did on OK job for me. My machine was having difficulties primarily with the primer feed. I don't know exactly what was wrong and was overjoyed when I finally made contact and it turned out well. By the way, I never tried to remove or replace the dies that were in there so I don't know whether they were standard or not. The same dies were in it when it was returned. Quantrill
Quantrill is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:57 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2014 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.09112 seconds with 9 queries