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Old April 29, 2006, 05:59 PM   #1
629 shooter
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Single stage press recommendations?

Basically I will be loading .223 on this press and that is probably it. Maybe .308 if the bug ever bites me again. Nearly all of my handgun loading these days is performed using a Dillon Square Deal which is pistol ONLY.

The press I now have for .223 reloading is a basic Lee Reloader Press - the C shape press. It has given me good service and I have loaded some accurate ammo with it.

I was thinking of adding an additional single stage press to cut down on time changing from sizing die to seating die and then having to adjust everything again.

I thought of the RCBS Rockchucker but it is quite massive , at least compared to my Lee. Also have considered the RCBS Partner press - $56.12 at Midsouth.

Or would I be served just as well by adding another Lee press at $20.25?

Anyone else have any recommendations for a good single stage press?
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Old April 29, 2006, 06:21 PM   #2
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I have both the Rockchucker and the little Lee Press and intend to keep both. The little Reloader is super for light work, but I broke one resizing milsurp .308.

The new Lee Classic Turret is tempting me because I load for many calbers. Being able to snap in a turret head already setup would benefit me greatly, but maybe not you.
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Old April 29, 2006, 06:39 PM   #3
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629 shooter,

I don't know what your budget is, but I own the Lee Classic press. What I like about it besides it being extremely strong, it has a 1 1/2 in. bushing that can be removed to allow loading of .50 cal. Browning. Besides that, I have bought the Hornady Lock-n-Load system and bushing dies. Now all I have to do is change the shell holder and snap in the full length resizer, or bullet seater or the factory crimp die. The dies remain set at the proper lengths. It makes reloading between calibers a snap. It's a good press that produces good accurate loads.

Regards,
Greg
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Old April 29, 2006, 06:43 PM   #4
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Get a turret press and make it easy for yourself. Lee Classic Turret fits the bill perfectly.
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Old April 29, 2006, 09:35 PM   #5
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Depending on how you prefer to reload rifle rounds, single stage and turret presses both have their place in efficiency. A single stage press with Hornady LNL inserts can be just as efficient as a turret press if you do your loading in batch stages, i.e. resizing a whole batch at a time, seating a whole batch at a time, etc. On the other hand, if you want to reload semi-progressive style, finishing one round at a time before you start another, the turret press is more efficient.

However, with the new Lee classic turret, you can think of Lee turret plates as multi-die lock-n-load inserts!

Andy
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Old April 29, 2006, 10:29 PM   #6
donkee
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LEE Classic Cast.
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Old April 30, 2006, 01:33 AM   #7
English Bob
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Go for the Rockchucker. Put the sizing die in it and the seater in the Lee.

I have two Rockchuckers, and old original style and the newer Rockchucker Supreme, and they are excellent presses.

You are right about them being massive, but it's good to have a solid press for sizing rifle cases. It'll be really nice when you start reloading .308 cases or decide to get something even bigger.
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Old April 30, 2006, 10:48 AM   #8
Leftoverdj
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NOTE: The Rockchucker and the Lee Classic are in direct competition. RCBS has a long reputation for quality and customer service. The Lee Classic is about half the price. Otherwise the presses are closely comparable. The choice between the two is mostly taste and budget although the Lee has a couple of innovative features in priming and primer disposal that might make me buy one.
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Old April 30, 2006, 11:21 AM   #9
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Quote:
The Rockchucker and the Lee Classic are in direct competition. RCBS has a long reputation for quality and customer service. The Lee Classic is about half the price. Otherwise the presses are closely comparable.
It looks like the Lee uses an adapter to be able to handle the standard 7/8 -14 dies. I would just rather it be threaded to work with the standrad dies to begin with.

But gbair stated that the Lee Classic press still loads accurate ammo and that is my main priority.

*Edit to add - looked at the Midsouth website and the Rockchucker is listed at $98.88 now.
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Old April 30, 2006, 12:26 PM   #10
Unclenick
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Either Midsouth or Midway had a sale going on the Lee a week or so back. $60 or so if I recall correctly.

If you want high precision and fast die change all built-in, consider the Forster Bonanza Co-ax press. It is $190 at Midway, so it is pricier than the others mentioned here, but more match winners at Camp Perry are using them now than any other press. Dies snap in and out, registering on their setting rings, so you set them once and forget them. They have a universal sliding v-notch plate shell holder, so you never need to change shell holders unless you go to really wide case heads. The large plate set for wide cases come with it, but .223 and .308 both use the standard plate set. Spent primers drop through the ram into a container.

Nick
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Old April 30, 2006, 06:31 PM   #11
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If you want a small but capable press, you might consider the RCBS Partner press. I've been using one for about 10 years with no issues at all. It won't do case forming or large magnums, but otherwise it's all a low volume reloader needs.
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Old April 30, 2006, 08:32 PM   #12
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Both the Rockchucker and the Lee classic cast presses have larger threaded holes, and come with a screw-in adapter that takes standard 7/8-14 threaded dies. Many other presses also have it. This feature also allows the Hornady LNL adapter and inserts to be used with those presses, which makes swapping dies MUCH easier.

Andy
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Old April 30, 2006, 09:55 PM   #13
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Quote:
If you want a small but capable press, you might consider the RCBS Partner press. I've been using one for about 10 years with no issues at all. It won't do case forming or large magnums, but otherwise it's all a low volume reloader needs.
Is the Partner a cast iron frame like the Rockchucker and Lee Classic? It's not an aluminum press - correct? For my light duty .223 reloading it sounds like it might be more than adequate.


Quote:
Both the Rockchucker and the Lee classic cast presses have larger threaded holes, and come with a screw-in adapter that takes standard 7/8-14 threaded dies. Many other presses also have it. This feature also allows the Hornady LNL adapter and inserts to be used with those presses, which makes swapping dies MUCH easier.
Ok - thanks , did not realize that!
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Old May 1, 2006, 01:14 PM   #14
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Quote:
Is the Partner a cast iron frame like the Rockchucker and Lee Classic? It's not an aluminum press - correct? For my light duty .223 reloading it sounds like it might be more than adequate.
Yes, but much smaller and not a full "O" press. Not aluminum. It would be more than adequate for .223. I've used it happily for full-length sizing of .30-40 cases.
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Old May 2, 2006, 01:20 AM   #15
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JNewell - thanks , I have seen the Partner before and though they were cast iron. I am going to look into the Partner and the Lee Classic. The Classic is only about $9 more than the Partner and is a O press.
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Old May 2, 2006, 02:11 AM   #16
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I have a partner, and it certainly is NOT capable of doing .223 in any reasonable volume, unless you're just neck sizing.
My RCBS partner is a POS! It scatters primers everywhere.
Get the Lee classic cast!
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Old May 2, 2006, 11:06 AM   #17
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+1 the Lee Classic is a great press at bargin prices.

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Old May 2, 2006, 01:47 PM   #18
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I think you would like one of these:

Spar-T on eBay

or this one:

older model Lyman turret

They are not quite as strong as an O-frame press, but you can set up for the two rifle calibers and not have to change dies.

For just single stage I'd say the LEE Classic.
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Old May 3, 2006, 10:53 AM   #19
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Thanks for all the replies and the links to ebay. There were quite a few Rockchuckers for sale on there.

Quote:
I have a partner, and it certainly is NOT capable of doing .223 in any reasonable volume, unless you're just neck sizing.
My RCBS partner is a POS! It scatters primers everywhere.
Get the Lee classic cast!
I thought the Partner would handle the .223 considering my little Lee C press does? Apprently there is no provision for catching ejected primers? I sure would not want primers all over the place!

There is a big gun show in about a month , maybe I can check out some of the presses firsthand. Since my basic Lee reloading press has worked so well through the years I am seriously considering the Lee Classic cast press. Still would like to see one in person.

Again , many thanks to all - very helpful!
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Old May 3, 2006, 01:14 PM   #20
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Not sure why the Classic Cast will do ammo at a higher rate than any other single stage press. The Partner does dump the primers out the bottom of the ram, but it ain't hard to deal with. I just put a trash can underneath it and that pretty much solves the problem!
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Old May 3, 2006, 04:59 PM   #21
maggys drawers
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+1 on the Rockchucker.

Watch out on E-bay...a lot of used presses are going for or near new press prices.
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Old May 3, 2006, 08:41 PM   #22
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Quote:
Watch out on E-bay
just watch out for shipping charges!
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Old May 6, 2006, 01:07 AM   #23
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gbair and BigJakeJ1s--

I have the Lee Classic Cast Press and was told by a technician at Lee that the Hornady Lock-N-Load Conversion Bushing Kit COULD NOT be used on this press.

Are you saying that it CAN?

If you're using the Hornady LNL System, have you had any problems with it on the Lee press or did you have to modify the press in some way?

Thanks........
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Old May 6, 2006, 01:44 PM   #24
BigJakeJ1s
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I do not own the classic cast press, but according to the Lee website, the threaded opening in it is 1-1/4x12, and it comes with a threaded reducer to accept standard 7/8x14 dies. The 1-1/4x12 thread is the same as the rockchucker and many other heavy duty single stage presses, and is used on some large caliber custom dies. This is also the same thread size as the adapter for the lock-n-load die bushings (per the Hornady website). I have seen reports of folks using the LNL adapters with the Lee classic cast press, therefore it does work. I don't know why Lee told you otherwise, unless they just do not tell anyone whether accessories other than their own will work with their equipment (a common practice with many manufacturers).

Hope this helps,

Andy
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Old May 6, 2006, 05:00 PM   #25
gbair
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Mtn Hawk,

I do own the Classic cast press, and I'm sorry that my previous post stated
1 1/2 rather than 1 1/4 x 12. Regardless, the lock-n-load die bushings do work. I have newer longer threaded Lee dies and some tighten towards the last threads, but they all work and produce fine accurate ammo. My one set of old Lee 7mm TCU dies do not work because they were the old shorter thread type dies. My bullet sizing dies all work as well. A little shorter than if they were screwed into the conventional 7/8 x 14 thread, but they still work the same. The lock-n-load die bushings use up a little space, so the longer threaded dies are needed. Maybe Lee was concerned that you may have their older dies.

I purchased this press because I like Lee products and again Lee produced a quality piece of equipment at a reasonable price. I was in need of a single stage press to handle certain reloading duties, and this press does the job. I wish I had more space, because I really like the looks of the new Classic Turret press. I used my old 3-hole turret press to load thousands of rounds before I went progressive. The new turret has a lot of great features.

If the turret press had come out sooner, I'd have bought it over the single stage classic. The attraction of the single was to eventually load 50 cal.

Regards,
Greg
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