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Old April 9, 2000, 12:49 AM   #1
BigPig
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Join Date: July 2, 1999
Posts: 93
Hi folks, I have some questions I need answered before I start reloading. Please bear with me.

Everything but my dies and cases are in. I'm giddy! Before I do though, I have some important questions.

Let me start off by saying that I am stupid in that I didn't buy things in bulk. This is because I was spending well over $600, so I bought components in smaller quantities to save a little, and learn first.

These are the components that I bought:

Powder-- H335 (1lb)
Primers-- Federal 205 (1000)
Bullets-- Remington 55gr. FMJ (200) and 55gr. SP (100)
Cases-- Remington (100)

Ok here are my questions:

I can't find a load that uses Remington bullets and I can't find one that uses Federal primers either (not in the same load).
1) Can I substitute these components for the ones listed *as long as* I reduce the powder charge by about 10%?

2) Do you guys think its a good idea to load a few dummies before attempting to load live ammo?

3) I have heard that ground corn cob and crushed walnut hulls can be found in pet shops really cheap. Any truth to this?

If UPS feels like delivering my dies and cases by Tuesday, I can begin! Oh man oh man, I can't wait!

Thanks for any and all help!
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Old April 9, 2000, 01:37 AM   #2
Gopher a 45
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Join Date: January 24, 2000
Posts: 329
Let's see,

You're fixing to have some fun and some frustration (but hopefully not too much frustration)

It's not stupid to start out small, and once you find a good load, you can stock up. Half the fun of reloading is experimenting, though! Generally, you can substitute components, as long as the specs are the same (i.e. the bullets weights are the same). For just blasting ammo, the brand doesn't usually matter. However, some bullets vary dimensionally between brands, so you will need to adjust the OAL to work in your firearm. Don't just assume the OAL in the manual will work. (are you using an AR-15?) A good starting load for H335 with a 55g bullet (FMJ or SP) is 24g of powder with a maximum of 26g. OAL again depends on your firearm. 1 lb of powder will give you about 300 rds. of .223 by the way, so that matched the number of bullets you got. Cool!

For H335 powder, you need to use a magnum primer for reliable ignition, but I don't know if the Fed. 205s are magnum or not. Personally, I like H322 and Varget powders.

Go ahead and load dummies, but you don't strictly need to. A headspace gauge really helps with the sizing die setting. If you do load dummies, I would suggest you don't crimp the cases until everything else is right if you want to recover the components, as a crimp makes it really hard to pull the bullet (you DO have a bullet puller don't you?) I don't need one, since I never make mistakes I would use one case to get the case sizing right, then get the powder charge right, seat the bullet to good OAL, etc. taking one station at a time, that way you don't have to use up so many cases, but remember you have to actually shoot some to see if they feed in your gun (unless it's a bolt gun).

I don't know about cheap polishing media, sorry. It's not too bad even at gun shops. It lasts a while.

Hope you get your stuff soon and have fun! Email if you have any other questions.

John

<chuckle> Wating to start is like waiting for Christmas all over again, isn't it?

P.S. You'll need a case trimmer also, before long, since the cases "stretch" a little after firing. Reloading for pistol's a lot easier!



[This message has been edited by Gopher a 45 (edited April 09, 2000).]
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Old April 9, 2000, 01:47 AM   #3
BigPig
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Join Date: July 2, 1999
Posts: 93
Yes, I am using an AR15. How'd ya know?

Unfortunately, the Federal primers I bought arent magnum. I hope everything will work out!

Thanks for your help. Oh, and yes, it is like waiting for Christmas!
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Old April 9, 2000, 08:50 AM   #4
Patrick Graham
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Join Date: January 18, 1999
Location: Kokomo, Indiana USA
Posts: 674
You can download the hodgdon manual free at http://www.hodgdon.com/data/frame.htm

According to my old Speer #10 reloading manual, page 32, primer interchangability chart. Federal 205 is listed as Small rifle magnum and is interchangable with CCI450.

The Speer manual also recommends a Magnum primer with H335.

If the remington bullets are 55 gr fmj then use the 55 gr load data for h335 in the hodgdon manual ( free download ). Good place to start.
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Old April 9, 2000, 08:58 AM   #5
Bud Helms
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Join Date: December 31, 1999
Location: Middle Georgia
Posts: 13,003
BigPig,

The standard primers are probably okay. Magnum primers are usually used on ball powder for reliable ignition, but that is a debated issue. BTW, W748 is a good substitute for H335, both of which are ball powders.

As far as not being able to find a load for your exact bullet/primer/case combination, I wouldn't worry excessively about that right now, unless you are going straight to max loads ... in which case ... 'been nice knowin' ya! THE MOST important thing is to get the powder charge-to-bullet weight correct.

I would try small quantities of reloads and start off single firing them to make sure they chamber, then go to twosies to make sure your AR cycles, meaning watch for extraction problems.

There is a lot of advice about where to start a load on the "min-to-max" load line. Why not just start at the middle, or maybe just below middle and work up. You will learn a lot loading in small batches. It's supposed to be fun, after all.

I keep one dummy round for each chambering for which I load. If I shoot the same cartridge in different rifles, I have a dummy for each. If I shoot different bullets in the same rifle, I have a dummy for each. That helps for adjusting the sizing dies for that cartridge-chamber combination.

BTW, you did order a small base sizing die didn't you? You need to do that for auto loaders. As far as a crimp goes, you'll have to experiment.

You are on your way. Have (safe) fun.

[This message has been edited by sensop (edited April 09, 2000).]
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Old April 9, 2000, 01:55 PM   #6
BigPig
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Join Date: July 2, 1999
Posts: 93
Patrick Graham,

Thanks for clearing up my confusion on the primers!

sensop,

I bought the Redding 2 Die set.


I will give a run-down of what I bought, just so you guys know what I do and dont have. This way, I think it will be easier for you to help me.

1- RCBS reloading starter kit... This is the RS5 press, 505 scale, lube and pad, case mouth brushes and deburrer, primer flip tray, funnel, loading block, and Speer manual.

2- Redding powdwer measure (#3 BR)and Redding trickler, and Redding 2 die set

3- Midway tumbler and brass cleaner

4- Forster case trimmer

5- Midway calipers and cartidge headspace gauge (Weber, I think)

6- Lee auto prime

7- Lyman manual, some ammo boxes and labels, another loading block and soon the corn cob

8- Components:
Powder-- H335 (1lb)
Primers-- Federal 205 (1000)
Bullets-- Remington 55gr. FMJ (200) and 55gr. SP (100)
Cases-- Remington (100)

Did I do good? I was coached on what to buy by a quite knowledgable man (mentor really).

Thanks for all the help so far, you guys have been great.

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Old April 9, 2000, 03:34 PM   #7
Bud Helms
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Join Date: December 31, 1999
Location: Middle Georgia
Posts: 13,003
Redding dies are fantastic. KEEP 'EM CLEAN!

From the list, 'looks like you're in business. I'd add two things. One's essential: a kinetic bullet puller. Trust me! The other is maybe a Hornady manual.

I can tell that the first thing you'll run out of is bullets. The second thing is powder. By then you'll know what to get in what quantities.

And ... keep buying those reloading books.

[This message has been edited by sensop (edited April 09, 2000).]
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