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Old April 2, 2014, 07:16 PM   #1
Reloader2
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9mm ammo cost

I currently am loading for approximately $.23 a round. Bullet=.09, Brass=.08,Primer=.04 and Powder =.02
Comes to $11.50 a box of 50 for the first go round. After that I can use the brass again and load for $7.50 a box, not much more than some .22 ammo.
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Old April 2, 2014, 07:38 PM   #2
filthy phil
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When tula is $10/50 at wallyworld.
sure, hand loads are more accurate.
Loading. 45 and others pays off a little beta
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Old April 2, 2014, 07:45 PM   #3
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I think 45 ACP and 38 Special are the biggest "money savers." Those two calibers because they shoot lead so well.

10mm is a big "money saver" too - mostly because the factory ammo is so expensive to begin with.

Note, how I put "money saver" in quotation marks. That's because no actual money is saved - you just shoot more
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Old April 2, 2014, 09:34 PM   #4
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You need to look at it as the brass cost is .01 to .02 a round from the start, as you should be able to load them 5 times minimum (counting lost brass).

Ergo you are actually loading at .18 per round or $9 per box overall. Don't you feel better now? Just don't try to add your time and equipment cost. Not worth trying to figure it out.

Happy loading and shooting.
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Old April 2, 2014, 10:02 PM   #5
chris in va
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Granted I'm not factoring the cost of lead which isn't much, but I calculated my LRN are about $2.70/50.

So at current 22 prices, I'm reloading 9mm cheaper
than 22lr.

BTW why on earth are you paying .08 for a case of 9mm? Good Lord.
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Old April 2, 2014, 10:17 PM   #6
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I don't count the cost of brass when trying to figure out the cost of reloading ammo. My 9 mm brass all came from factory ammo. This means it is free for me. I also know I can easily get 20 reloads with 9 mm if I don't loose them first. .357 Sig and Magnum cost me a lot less to load than buying factory ammo. The same can be said of .45 ammo.

When I do buy new brass I divide the cost per case by the number of times I expect it to be reloaded. This gives me a fairly good idea of the cost over the life of the case. Powder, primers and bullets, for me, are a single use items.
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Old April 2, 2014, 11:00 PM   #7
Machineguntony
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Here are my costs:

7.5 cents per bullet
1.9 cents per powder charge
3 cents per primer
Brass is amortized at approximately 1c each.

12.4 cents per round. That is $6.20 per box of 50 rounds.

Even at 7.50, your cost, thats a good savings.
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Old April 2, 2014, 11:23 PM   #8
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This is all fun with math, but the reality is that we loaders don't load to save money. We may tell our wives that, in order to justify the shelves full of components.

But we load not only to shoot, but also because it's a craft in an of itself. Sometimes, I wonder which is the primary reason, and which is the secondary.

But we don't load to save money - that I can assure you.

Show me somebody who loads strictly to save money, and I'll show you somebody who will soon have a bunch of equipment in their garage - collecting dust.
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Old April 3, 2014, 12:07 AM   #9
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Using components purchased between 2008 and 2013, I reload 9mm for $2.39 / box of 50. (Commercial cast 122 gr bullets.)

But.... I buy when the price is right. I'm not one of those guys that walks into the gun shop, complains about the price of powder and primers, and pays it anyway. If it's too expensive, I don't buy it. Old canisters of powder with old price tags, long forgotten at the back of the shelf; and primers with the wrong price tag... these are the things I love.

At current ("reasonable") prices, it would be $5.68 per 50.

I don't count brass in either price.
I haven't paid for a single piece of 9mm brass, in my life, and, likely, never will. I pick it up for free in the desert, mountains, and sometimes in the middle of a well-traveled road. I have given away more 9mm than I will probably ever use in my life.

Even if 9mm brass vanished overnight, I could load and shoot what I have on hand for the rest of my life.
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Old April 3, 2014, 09:31 AM   #10
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Reloading just to save money?
Sure.
That's why I got into reloading, in the first place.
Couldn't even begin to afford much factory ammo, as a kid.
The high cost of ammo was the motivation, in the beginning.

But it's true that many folks who get into reloading, just with the idea of saving money, never learn to do it well.
They have the idea of churning out inexpensive ammo by the ton.
Then they wind up make lousy and unreliable ammo, and, in disgust, toss it all in the corner of the garage to rust away.
Lots of truth to that.
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Old April 3, 2014, 10:09 AM   #11
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I put a pencil to my true reloading cost per round once. Never again. I forget how many tens of thousands of rounds I would have to load just to recover equipment cost, but it was more than I'll ever shoot. And that's with no charge for my free time. Thank goodness I got into reloading as a hobby, not a money saver. Hobbies don't need no steenkin' justification.
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Old April 3, 2014, 10:28 AM   #12
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What on earth did you buy, the entire factory?
I figured my present reloading outfit paid for itself well within the first year worth of shooting - about 400 - 600 rds a month at the time of purchase.
And lots of years afterward.
And that includes a Dillon SQDeal, a Mec Jr., a Lee single stage, scales, dies, and all the rest of the usual paraphernalia.
Reloading has been very cost effective.
Good thing, too, or I'd never been able to do all the kinds of shooting that I've enjoyed over the years.
It just requires staying focused on the goal and not getting carried away with buying stuff.
Kind of like the shootin' irons, come to think.
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Old April 3, 2014, 10:39 AM   #13
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Quote:
And that's with no charge for my free time. Thank goodness I got into reloading as a hobby
Which goes with my point: If you don't load as a hobby and a past-time to enjoy; but strictly to reduce ammunition costs, then you must count your time as an expense. Your time is valuable - or at least it should be. This "added expense" is the underlying reason why the equipment will end up sitting in the garage, collecting dust.

Conversely, if you enjoy loading as a hobby and craft, then you don't have to count your time as an expense. At which point, it becomes a cost-effective endeavor; and the equipment is spared relegation to dust collecting.
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Old April 3, 2014, 10:40 AM   #14
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Quote:
I figured my present reloading outfit paid for itself well within the first year worth of shooting - about 400 - 600 rds a month at the time of purchase.
^^^ +1 ^^^
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Old April 3, 2014, 11:57 AM   #15
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Quote:
I put a pencil to my true reloading cost per round once. Never again. I forget how many tens of thousands of rounds I would have to load just to recover equipment cost, but it was more than I'll ever shoot.
Mine was "paid for" long ago.
Each of us shoots different cartridges that offer different amounts of "savings", but for me, the money-makers are rifle cartridges.
Saving $5 or maybe $10 / box on handgun ammo is nice, but $20, $30, even $70+ per box of rifle ammo adds up very quickly. Even at a "box a year per rifle" pace, it amounts to significant savings and equipment amortization. (My rifles outnumber my handguns by more than 3 to 1.) Since I'm more of a rifleman to begin with, and might shoot 3-5 or more boxes of rifle ammo per box of handgun ammo, 'full amortization' was rather quick and painless.



As with any "how much do you save / how long to get my money back" scenario, I must admit....
Reloading doesn't provide "savings" on every load. It does, however, let me shoot ammunition that would otherwise be out of reach, due to the ridiculous expense.
For example, I have a 7.62x54R hand load (using 215 gr Woodleigh Weldcores) that I bring up quite often, because the retail price for an equivalent load runs $115 to $135 per box of 20. I could claim (and have a few times) that my handload is "saving" me $90+ per box. But... it's a bit of a fallacy, because I would never, ever pay that much for an equivalent load if I only shot factory ammo. And you can't "save" money, if you weren't going to spend it in the first place.

It does, however, let me shoot an "ultra-premium" load for a reasonable cost, with a cartridge that has very few similar loads available.
(And it is still significantly less expensive than a .308 Win or .30-06 factory load with Nosler Partitions or decent quality bonded bullets.)
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Old April 3, 2014, 01:20 PM   #16
jamrock
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For my glock 34

9mm Using Copper Jacketed Montana Gold Bullets
$.09 for bullet
$.037 small pistol primer
$.014 unique 4.5 grains
0.00 brass picked up at idpa matches
~ $7.00 a box of 50

When I switch to black bullets international projectiles my cost will go to $6.00.

If I could find a lead 9mm projectiles at the price I see from bear creek .04(not including shipping) that would bring my cost down to $4.00 a box
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Old April 3, 2014, 03:06 PM   #17
chris in va
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I'm really surprised to see so many people buying lead bullets. It's really not that big of a deal to get a Lee bottom pour and a couple molds.
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Old April 3, 2014, 03:47 PM   #18
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I load a premium jacketed bullet...for 9mm, 115 gr FMJ Montana Gold ...and I'm right at $ 6.50 for a box of 50.....

Bullets $ 0.09 Montana Gold 115gr FMJ
Primers $ 0.03 CCI
Powder $ 0.01 ( Hodgdon TiteGroup )

I shoot indoors, sweep up brass...I don't buy brass / clean and inspect and reuse at least 15 times..before they crack or get a bunch of dents on base..
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Old April 3, 2014, 04:24 PM   #19
jamrock
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Quote:
chris in va:
I'm really surprised to see so many people buying lead bullets. It's really not that big of a deal to get a Lee bottom pour and a couple molds.
---------------


And whats the cost break down for say 9mm projectile?

Living in the city and having a well ventilated outdoor area to work is a major factor in hold most back I suppose.

Last edited by jamrock; April 3, 2014 at 05:00 PM.
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Old April 3, 2014, 05:31 PM   #20
Nick_C_S
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I talk about the craft of loading ammo. But I don't think I am so "crafty" as to cast my own slugs.

Maybe if I had more area (I live in suburbia). Also, I'm not real keen on the whole molten lead thing - sounds . . . hot. Then there's the whole toxic thing - which is probably not really that big of a deal if precautions are taken, I suppose. Overall, it seem like more involvement than I care to endeavour.

$80 for 1000 slugs purchased (including shipping) seems like a bargain to me. That's still plenty cheap to make very affordable ammo.
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Old April 3, 2014, 10:37 PM   #21
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Casting is just another hobby in its self. I cast because I am broke, I like to try new bullets, I have lots of time and TV sucks, and I enjoy it. $0.03 each is all it cost me for 230g 45ACP bullets and even less for lighter bullets.
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Old April 3, 2014, 11:47 PM   #22
FrankenMauser
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Quote:
I'm really surprised to see so many people buying lead bullets. It's really not that big of a deal to get a Lee bottom pour and a couple molds.
As mentioned above....
That has its own set of costs and time investments.

You need a furnace/melter, molds, protective equipment, alloy, lube, and a luber/sizer - just to get started for a high volume cartridge like 9mm. ....and the time and space to be able to cast the bullets. (I don't consider tumble-lubing to be a viable option. )


As you know, I cast bullets for use in several revolvers and a few rifles, and 'redneck' swage .44 caliber bullets. But... I don't have a luber/sizer. I still dip-lube cast bullets, scrape the excess off with a "Kookie Kutter", and run the bullets through an appropriate Lee sizing die.

For 9mm, that would be far too much time and energy. Once I have a luber/size (I really want a Star), it'll be a different story. But, for now... $69.50 per 1000 (including shipping) is a price I'm willing to pay.
It was $39 per 1000, with free shipping, just 5 years ago....


One thing I will say, for those of you that don't think you have a place to cast....
I used to cast bullets in my driveway, in the middle of suburbia. I got a few weird looks, and lots of "what the...?" stares; but it got the job done. After I set up a few fans, I moved into the garage (for year-round casting ).
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Old April 4, 2014, 07:40 PM   #23
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I thought I posted on this thread last night but now I can't find it... oh well, one or two fewer beers were in order I guess.

I load for right at .10 cents a round. I have less than .06 a round in projectiles shipped price (Dardas cast... they offer TFL members a little discount and there bullets are GTG), about .03 or so in primers, and .01 to .02 in powder (700X or HS-6, whichever I can find for the best value and have good loads for both). I don't even count brass price as you can reload 9mm more than a dozen times without problem most of the time. I can pick up enough occasional free brass to cover that with no issue.
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