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Old November 16, 2013, 05:17 PM   #1
sty
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Reloading Room

I am working on building a room in my basement that is 9'x13' for reloading and so I have a place to put all of my hunting and fishing stuff in one spot in the house. My question is on the reloading bench and storage of all my equipment. What is the things you like the best or wish you did after you were done? I have looked at a lot of pictures and have a good idea of what I want to do, but I know how that works after you build something your like man I wish I had did it this was. As of now it is just studded put and I am starting to run the wiring. So I have a blank room to start with.
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Old November 16, 2013, 05:50 PM   #2
mikejonestkd
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This thread should give you some ideas on layout.

http://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=231150

Hope this helps
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Old November 16, 2013, 06:01 PM   #3
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I wish I had 9'x13'. Heh actually, I get by just fine. My humble loading bench is out in the two-car garage (with two cars in it), and it's small - something close to 31"x46" My brass sits on shelves above. Ammo holders are also on a shelf in the garage. My bullets, powder, primers, & loaded ammo are in the house.

No matter how much room I had, I'd always keep the powder in separate room. It's works with one of my safety rules: only have one powder at the bench at a time.

I made my load bench when I first got started (1984) - after about a month of working on an old picnic table. Amazingly - even in my youth (almost 22) - I managed to design a very ergonomic little unit. To this day I'm still kind of impressed. Cuz I wasn't known for thinking things through back then Point is, with the bench itself, I don't need a "do-over." My only wish is that it was big enough to mount a progressive to it; and that's not going to happen (nor am I even sure that going progressive is right for me - but that's a whole 'nuther post.)

Now that I rambled on, and you mention wiring, here's my one suggestion: Lighting. Good lighting. Both fluorescent and incandescent. Fluorescent for your primary light source - nice color spectrum (use cool white), etc. And incandescent to "blend out" the eye-fatiguing strobe that is given off by fluorescents (but is imperceptable). You'll be in there for long periods of time. You don't need eye strain.

You'll also want enough current capacity on the circuit to run a shop-vac, tumbler, and whatever other appliances.
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Old November 16, 2013, 06:13 PM   #4
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Lots of shelves and storage space. Can't have enough.
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Old November 16, 2013, 06:17 PM   #5
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As of right now I have everything out in the garage on my work bench. The downfall to that is I have remove everything when I am done because I use the bench for everything, oh and I live in Wisconsin so it will be getting cold out soon. The garage is insulated and heated but is to damp in the winter with all the snow melting off the cars. As far as the wiring I just put a new subpanel in just for the basement so I should be good to go. How do you store you powder and primers? I was going to call my insurance guy and ask him what and how much I can have, I have heard 18lbs. But i don't know that for sure and it is better to be save then sorry.
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Old November 16, 2013, 06:34 PM   #6
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I have a 15X20 reloading room and, like you, I started with a clean slate. I have two benches, one 12' long by 36” high and another 5' long and 27” high. The are topped with varnished double thickness ¾ sanded plywood glued and screwed with 1+3/8” sheetrock screws. Mount the benches to wall studs with lag bolts. I like to sit while using a progressive and stand while single loading. Also, the larger, higher bench is good for gun cleaning, etc. I sheathed the room with 3/8” plywood put up with screws. That way if I want to make any electrical changes I can easily remove the wood, make changes, and put it back. It also allows me to hang small items from cup hooks and staple up “show off” targets.

General lighting is four, 4' double florescents and wall mounted lights over the benches. I put electrical outlets every 4 feet around the room except one short wall on which I built floor to ceiling shelves. You can't have too many outlets. Used file cabinets are nice for storing dies, loose reloading tools, components, etc. Get them at garage sales cheap. Bottom line is build it so you can easily make changes in the future.

Good luck.
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Old November 16, 2013, 06:35 PM   #7
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My biggest problem is everything has to have it's place or it drives me nuts. Back when I was living at home I had to lock my tool boxes because my dad would take stuff and never bring it back and I would find all my tools on the tractors or in the barn. One time I found a 1/2 drive snap on ratchet out in the corn field after winter.
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Old November 16, 2013, 06:37 PM   #8
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I have one room downstairs that I use. 12 x 16 foot. It is broke down into 3 seperate work stations. I have the loading bench with press and such, 3 feet deep by 4 feet long. There is a second wall that has a 4ft x 8ft table that I use for cleaning my rifles with shelfs above for all cleaning supplies. The 3rd section is a office desk that holds my computer and all paper work. In one corner is a 5 tier shelf with all my powder,primers,brass and bullets sorted by calibers. I made the press bench high enough that i can sit on a regular bar stool and be at the right level.
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Old November 16, 2013, 06:45 PM   #9
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I am thinking about making the bench L shaped so I can load at one spot and clean and tinker at the other. I was also told by the wife that it I need to get a safe before I buy anymore guns because she sick of the in the closets in draws and under the bed.
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Old November 16, 2013, 06:50 PM   #10
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At my age, I am very appreciative of a bathroom. It is also handy to have the running water in case you use an ultrasonic.

You might also want to give consideration to your flooring and make sure you have good ventilation.
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Old November 16, 2013, 06:59 PM   #11
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As of now the whole basement is unfinished so there is no bathroom but it is a walkout so I can just run out the door . The room has a window in it so I am good with that flooring is just concrete now but I think I have enough tile from doing the kitchen and office upstairs to cover this room if not I may just paint it with garage floor epoxy.
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Old November 16, 2013, 08:11 PM   #12
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I used Gorilla racks split and set side by side to give me 8' of bench that was topped by a stock kitchen counter and had 2 layers of marine plywood underneath glued and screwed so that it I had a nice overhang for my knees, yet I could stand on the edge at 265# with no flex. That top was screwed to the rack frames and also through the backsplash to the wall studs. The shelves above the bench were not part of the bench top so any vibrations when loading did not affect my scale sitting at eye level on those shelves. With adjustable shelves underneath, I could adjust as necessary for shotgun supplies (large and bulky) or metallic (small but heavy)

Whatever way you go, plan on building 50% larger than you think you will need as "stuff" expands to fill the bench space available

Last edited by BigD_in_FL; November 16, 2013 at 09:58 PM. Reason: spelling - as USUAL....:o
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Old November 16, 2013, 09:11 PM   #13
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Quote:
Lots of shelves and storage space. Can't have enough.
THIS! I do not not know how long you have been reloading, but things have a tendency to multiply. I have only been at it for a couple years now, and I already wish I had built more storage from the beginning, and I will be adding some in the near future.

My bench is 4 feet deep by 8 feet long, with a 8 foot long X 1 foot wide raised shelf (boxed up on a 2X4s) covering the back foot, as well as a 1 foot wide X 8 foot long shelf 3 feet over the bench. In addition to that, I built a 4 shelf unit with each shelf being 3X3, and I am already running out of room.

Much like the saying when it comes to buying a gun safe; whatever size you think you will need in the future, go one step up from there.
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Old November 17, 2013, 06:22 AM   #14
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Well like most have mentioned figure out your storage needs and the rest will fall into place. It isn't hard to figure out a bench and where you want to put the presses, the hard part is what to do with everything else.

Quote:
Back when I was living at home I had to lock my tool boxes because my dad would take stuff and never bring it back and I would find all my tools on the tractors or in the barn. One time I found a 1/2 drive snap on ratchet out in the corn field after winter.
OMG that is about he most bassackward thing I have read in a while. I literally almost blew coffee out my nose.

That is usually exactly the other way around, your version is almost like a payback.

Not pickin on ya, just sayin the younguns are usually the ones who spread tool all over creation and forget where they got them from.
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Old November 17, 2013, 08:53 AM   #15
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Im revamping my reloading area right now....the biggest thing im doing now that i didnt do from the start is adding bins. Im purchasing a wall hanging bin system for all my brass. Labeling each bin.....308 primed, .308 unprimed, .223 primed, .223 unprimed....etc. im buying enough bin/wall hanging stuff to accomodate twice the brass i already have, which is close to 10,000 (everything combined). I also went to lowes and bought a large "hardware case" that has individual small bins in it that i can store all my bullets and primers in. Whats cool about it is, say im reloading .40's...i just grab that one bin out, set it by the press and pull right from the bin. Then right back in the case. I went to target, bought 4 three shelf cabinets, that were very cheap, about $30/cabinet, i put two pieces of wood horizontally across the back to reinforce them and hung them above my work bench. Two are for ammo storage, one is for powder, dies, and press stuff, the forth is for cleaning for the guns. I went to lowes and spent $20 on a 6ft diamond stamped light fixture for over the bench, plenty of crisp light, and looks nice too. I drilled holes and ran speakers and a plug in for my android so i can play pandora radio while i reload. Also, from lowes, i bought a cheap $35 wet/dry vac that mounts easily to the leg of the work bench, easy cleanup for spent primers, media, and other debris. Bought a small timer for my tumbler so i dont have to worry about forgetting to shut it off if i wanna load it up and leave the house. Also bought one of those bucket/rotating sifters that makes dumping media out of cases a breeze. Tip: get a fine grit media and you wont have to worry about popping the pieces out of the flash holes. And last but not.least, a VERY simple and cheap way to.ensure you avoid moisture issues, go on ebay and spend $10 of a bag of 100small silca gel packs. I drop on in each container of powder, and i pul one in each box of completed ammo. Since ive started doing this, i have seen ZERO tarnishing/discoloration of my loaded rounds, no change in color of powders, and havent run into any moisture issues at all.
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Old November 17, 2013, 09:44 AM   #16
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I was thinking about a bin rack for all the small things, I do love them. I have a big double door cabinet that I got from work that they were scrapping but it is heavy I had to use the loader on the tractor to get it off the truck. I have that out in my shop now and it would be overkill.
It must of skipped a generation because my grandpa was the same way as I, and Dad would drive both of us nuts because of not putting tools back.
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Old November 17, 2013, 09:45 AM   #17
sty
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I do like the idea of a small shop vac. That is something I did not think of.
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Old November 17, 2013, 09:49 AM   #18
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I am just in the planning stage now, I have the framing done but once the snow starts to fly and I can't do much outside it will be game on.
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Old November 17, 2013, 11:02 AM   #19
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Jeff2131- Your bins?. How are you mounting them?. I have tried wood and metal shelving but they all start to bend with the weight over time. I have now gone to plastic storage bin's with covers that sit on the floor under my cleaning table. I do drop desiccant packs in with them. I also have lots of brass and that is my biggest storage issue. I keep them seperated into 2 different groups
1- fired brass
2- finished brass
But I have so much. I have to stack on floor as I said for weight problems. I have maybe 10,000 - 223, 12,000-45's. and around 60 lbs of 9MM (Don't even own one ) yet. My 308,243,22-250 and 6BR,Maybe 500 of each.
The bin thing sounds like an idea I should look at

Or Maybe I should look at my Pack Ratting Issue I have first
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Old November 17, 2013, 02:44 PM   #20
Jeff2131
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I am purchasing them, havent used them yet. I plan on alot of bins so that i can spread the weight out, maybe 4-6 bins per caliber. Primed and unprimed, the bulk of my brass(that has been cleaned but not run through sizing and decapping yet) will stay in boxes under the bench until they are next in line for reloading. So basically the weigh issue wont be an issue because only the prepped and/or primed cases will occupy the bins. And they will be within arms reach.
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Old November 23, 2013, 09:46 PM   #21
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I used an old 5 foot bathroom cabinet with a 1 inch plywood top all scrounged and it works great.The drawers and under where the sink would go works real good for some storage then I also scrounged a metal file cabinet for more storage. You don't need fancy.
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Old November 26, 2013, 06:21 AM   #22
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I find having a peg board behind my press invaluable for keeping my tools within easy reach. Also after noticing that my cleaning patches hang perfectly like they do on the store rack, I started taking zip-locks and using a hole punch to hang miscellaneous items I seem to always need.

Bolt your bench to the wall and/or floor. It really helps to get a consistent pull on your press.

One other small tip that may be of use is a "magnetic parts tray" ~4 dollars from harbor freight. I just drilled a wood screw flush with the bench top and now when I'm doing a detail strip and am worried about losing springs and such, I just stick the parts tray on the screw and drop all the small parts into magnetic bowl. Voila, no more missing parts on reassembly. When I'm done using it, I just pull it off and stick it back on the bolt I put on my peg board.

Last edited by DennRN; November 26, 2013 at 06:27 AM.
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