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Old September 17, 2006, 05:00 PM   #1
CrustyFN
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Want to reload

I am hoping to buy some reloading equipment soon and need your help. I have been looking at the Lee equipment because of price and have been reading good things about it for most of their products. I have been looking at the Anniversary Kit and The Turret Kit. I read a post where someone said the perfect powder measure wasn't very accurate. In your opinion,

1) Which is better the perfect powder measure or auto disk powder measure?

2) Should I start with a single stage press or get the turret press.

3) Should I get the three die set or four die set. I have seen posts where some say it is better to seat and crimp with separate dies. My speer book says it is better to seat and crimp with the same die.

4) Is it true you don't need any lube with carbide dies and are they the best way to go?

Sorry I forgot to mention that I will be loading 9mm and I shoot around 200 rounds a week. I also picked up brass after our clubs last IDPA match and have been saving mine when I shoot. I sorted it and have around 1200 Win and 500 mixed of many different brands. I was going to stick with the Win for now. Thanks for reading this and for any help and advise you can give me.
Rusty
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Old September 17, 2006, 07:09 PM   #2
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I've had Lee stuff before, and the "better" more-expensive brands of reloading equipment and have been through the progressives, too. Some time ago, I sold it all as part of my plan to unburden me of all my "stuff," including all the reloading stuff I had....WAY too many calibers, dies, shell plates, bullet sizing dies, etc.

Recently, I got back into reloading when a friend gave me a .270 Winchester (damn, I hate it when that happens)...and for SHTF (being self-sufficient) scenarios should ammo become unavailable so I could feed it -- and the .45ACP I have -- regardless of outside conditions. But I wanted to keep the equipment at a minimum this time.

So this time (probably my last time) I came back to Lee...wanted to keep things less costly all around, too.

To answer your questions...

1. The Lee Perfect "Pro" powder measure. Get the "riser" device so you'll be sure it CLEARS the tops of dies when you install it on the press (turret presses...for single-stages it doesn't matter).

2. Get the Lee Classic Turret Press (LCTP)...it can be used as a single-stage (batch-mode) OR a "semi-progressive"...options you do NOT have with a true single-stage press, like the also nice, Lee Classic "O" frame press.

3. If possible, seat and crimp in separate operations -- this is especially applicable to using lead bullets but I prefer two operations...the LCTP allows for that since it has a 4-hole turret.

4. Yes, it's true...so get carbide sizing dies and eliminate that annoying extra step, but DO be sure to clean your cases of grit/sand/dirt before you use them...take care of your dies. I use a Lyman "universal" decapping die to FIRST decap and then I'm able to wash/clean all my cases well...only THEN do I put them into my dies to resize them, etc.

Don't worry about sorting brands and such with your cases...any empty 9mm case in good condition is just as good as the next. Since you have so many empty cases on hand, you COULD do it if you wanted to but it's not at all necessary. Some people make reloading WAY more complicated then it has to be.

What's REALLY going to matter is the quality/consistency of the reloads you produce.

Good luck,

-- John D.

Last edited by cloudcroft; September 17, 2006 at 07:58 PM.
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Old September 18, 2006, 05:46 PM   #3
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I'll add my ditto to the above as concerns pistol reloading only, with one [I]caveat:[/] beware range brass unless you know it is only once fired. A lot of people (especially match shooters, oddly enough) will leave any questionable brass at the range. Here, we encourage such brass to be deposited in a red collection bucket we all know is for that purpose. I can't say the same for other clubs/ranges.
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Old September 18, 2006, 06:55 PM   #4
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Thanks for the reply. Most of the people that shoot in the matches at our range bring new box's of WWB. I figured it would be safe to use all of the Win brass, at long as it looks good. Some of the brass I picked up is Cor-Bon +P+, would it be OK to use that or not.
I bought my tumbler today. Harbor Freight had them on sale for $39. The brand is Chicago. The price was right so I thought I would give it a try. I am using walnut a little bit of Nu-Finish car polish. According to another thread it is supposed to work very good. I will let you know when the first batch is done. Thanks again for your help.
Rusty
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Old September 18, 2006, 07:44 PM   #5
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good advice already.The only thing I would like to say is read,read,read! reloading books.They will explain things that can help you make better ammo and keep you safe doing it..Also always start with safe starting loads(because they usually function fine and keep bad variables away).I would like to make a comment on the perfect powder measure,,,My 1st impressions when using large extruded powders were(not so good!)I then used it for h335(very small ball/flake powder)and I hated watching flakes of powder leak out the side no matter how tight I adjusted it)..So not A good startBUT!!! If you use a medium or small extruded powder than you have one of the best deals there are.I use it for my ar15 and shoot 625yards with Less than M.O.A. accuracy(not possible if that perfect powder measure wasn't doing its job)LEE products are not going to do everything perfectly but I started on them and am still using them(single stage challenger press,hand priming tool,case trimmer and debur,collet+pace setter dies,ETC ETC,) I have been using this same gear for many years and 1000's of rounds with the same dies so you will save money and be way ahead by using Lee stuff at least until you wan't something else that fits your exact needs better.JUst get everything from lee and save alot of money and enjoy your new hobby Good luck.
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Old September 19, 2006, 12:51 PM   #6
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Study up!

CrustyFN--Buckythebrewer has it right:
Quote:
The only thing I would like to say is read,read,read! reloading books.
These will help you make knowledgeable decisions as to what equipment to buy.

The standard text on the subject is The ABC's of Reloading put out by Krause Publishing www.krause.com Get it from yr local sptg gds sto, gun sho, the I'net, or order from the publisher.

This is a how-to and more importantly a why-and-why-not-to sort of book. Tons of info for the would-be or beginning reloader, but plenty for the more experienced as well. Belongs on every reloader's bookshelf, well thumbed, IMHO.

You'll also need a reloading manual--this is like a recipie book for loads. My go-to manual is Lyman's 48th Edition, but there are several good ones out there. Most reloaders end up with several manuals, as one book cannot possibly cover all the combinations of cartridge, primer, powder, and projectile that exist.

Anyhow, good luck, enjoy, and welcome to The Magnificent Obsession--Reloading!
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Old September 19, 2006, 04:06 PM   #7
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As far as range brass goes, unless it's badly corroded, the headstamp no longer exists, primers slip in too easily, or it's been crushed, I use it all.

The AMERC brass gets flattened with a hammer (the kids have fun doing it and I get a strange satisfaction seing them crushed).

Never have any problems with using range pickups as long as I follow the above rules......
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Old September 19, 2006, 07:23 PM   #8
CrustyFN
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Thanks for all the help everybody. Smokey Joe that ABC book sounds good I'll have to look for it. I should be going to buy my equipment on Thursday, at least most of it. I have decided on the Lee four hole turret kit with auto index. It comes with the auto disk powder measure, safety scale and some other small tools. I was going to buy the Lee hand primming tool also and the four die carbide set with the factory crimp die. I finished cleaning all of the Win brass, came out great. There are around 1200.
Rusty
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Old September 19, 2006, 08:28 PM   #9
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CrustyFn ,You will probably find using the hand priming tool is one of the best parts of reloading(no kidding).Dump your primers in and just shake the tray and they all right themselves(its so cool) .Just one thing I wanted to mention,,Lee recommends using only cci or winchester primers in the handprimng tool for safety.I thought I would mention it before you went and got your primers.I have used at least 600-700 federal in it(made me nervous)without any problems but I took a chance(not smart)well good luck.and don't forget those safety glasses.
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Old September 19, 2006, 10:07 PM   #10
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CrustyFN,

You're welcome.

Good luck in your reloading,

-- John D.
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Old September 20, 2006, 07:42 PM   #11
CrustyFN
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Ok here is a list of the equipment I have come up with. Let me know how it looks and if I am missing anything. I will also include a couple of pictures of the space I have to work with. Please don't laugh to hard. Thanks for your help and all of your great advice.
Rusty

1: Lee classic turret press.
2: Lee four die carbide set for 9mm.
3: Lee safety scale.
4: Lee auto disk pro powder measure, plus extension.
5: caliper.
6: Lee auto prime, hand primmer tool with shell holders.
7: Hammer type bullet puller.
8: Wooden loading block.


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Old September 20, 2006, 11:30 PM   #12
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You really need very little equipment to reload, in fact, you have more than I do in that you have a caliper...I just use a factory round for setting bullet seating depth.

Whatever, I prefer a "minimalist" approach...only what I really need, no extras, no frills.

Certainly, don't be concerned about keeping up with what anyone else has.

-- John D.

P.S. Looks like your bench is pretty solid...to avoid drilling holes in it for presses, etc., try using C-clamps if possible.
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Old September 23, 2006, 01:17 AM   #13
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I agree with donkee- If it wasn't for range pick-ups, I wouldn't have nearly the .45 and .223 that I have today. I look at the case head for signs of numerous extractions, cracks in case and headstamp wear. All of the above pretty well tell the tale of a cases' previous use.
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Old September 23, 2006, 11:38 AM   #14
CrustyFN
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Thanks everybody for your help and advice. I ordered my equipment today from MidwayUSA. I don think I would have bought this nice of a setup without your advice. Your help is greatly appreciated. Here is what I bought.

Lee Auto Disk Powder Measure Riser.
Lee Adjustable Charge Bar Auto Disk.
Lee Pro Auto Disk Powder Measure.
Lee Safety Prime Small and Large Primer Feeder.
Lee Classic Four Hole Turret Press.
Lee Deluxe Handgun Four Die Set 9mm Luger.
Lee Safety Magnetic Scale. ( will upgrade as needed )
Total was $207
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Old September 23, 2006, 11:54 AM   #15
cloudcroft
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Midway will ship your order same day and you should get it soon.

Be sure to come back in a while and post again...to let us know how things are going in your personal ammo-factory!



-- John D.
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Old September 23, 2006, 01:03 PM   #16
CrustyFN
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The order said that it would be here on the 29th. I couldn't believe how cheap the shipping was. Most places charge you by the amount of money you spend. Midway just charged a flat rate. Thanks John talk to you later.
Rusty
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Old September 23, 2006, 09:37 PM   #17
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I recommend a case trimmer(don't forget the 9 mm pilot for it) + debur with drill attachment,case gauge,Lee 2nd book.I also recommend you make sure you get a good powder that will make it impossible to double charge(fills the case over 1/2 full with normal load).safety glasses as well .have fun,keep it safe and good luck with everything. also ,,,I have had the best experiences with midway with all my orders,they are very good at what they do and prices usually very well..
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Old September 25, 2006, 10:01 PM   #18
CrustyFN
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OK I thought of another question. Are plated bullets good to use or should I stay with jacketed?Thanks,
Rusty
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Old September 25, 2006, 10:29 PM   #19
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Good call on the Auto disc. Had the Perfect Powder Measure and diddnt like it one bit. I like the AD because the hole at the bottom of the hopper is removed and to the side of the hole in the powder though die. The disc itself moves the powder from the hopper hole over to the die hole and so no more powder than can fit into the disc will ever fall though the die, the PPM can leak straight down into your cases.
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Old September 27, 2006, 08:07 PM   #20
CrustyFN
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OK everybody here it is. I still need to buy powder and bullets. Also I haven't set up the dies yet. I still have some reading I want to do before I use it. The list looks small after everything is put together. Thanks again for your help, I couldn't have done this without you. I will up date you as I get started.
Rusty



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Old October 6, 2006, 04:26 PM   #21
CrustyFN
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I finally got to shoot some of my reloads. It was awesome. A little scary at first but once I was confident none were to weak everything went well. I didn't shoot any paper targets to check accuracy. I did shoot bowling pins at 15 yards and was able to hit a lot of them with few misses. I used Berry's bullets, Bullseye and HS-6 powders and they worked very well.
Rusty
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Old October 6, 2006, 07:56 PM   #22
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Xlnt!!

CrustyFN--There is NOTHING quite like the shooting of your first reloads! They all go bang, they hit the target, and YOU did 'em your very own self!

Hard to have more fun than that with your clothes on!
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Old October 6, 2006, 08:44 PM   #23
CrustyFN
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Quote:
There is NOTHING quite like the shooting of your first reloads!
Smokey Joe, you can say that again. I forgot to tell you the best part. I put in the first magazine. My CZ is DA on the first pull. I pulled the trigger and click. I looked at the gun, then looked at my friend and after a few seconds remembered I forgot to rack the slide to load the first round. I must have been a little to excited to remember minor details like that.
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Old October 6, 2006, 08:44 PM   #24
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Rusty--

you might want to check out this site:

http://www.reloadammo.com/

Lots of good info, and it's free.
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Old October 11, 2006, 01:40 PM   #25
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Looks like you already found the press that I was going to recommend for starting out with. You obviously did your research. Enjoy!
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