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Old March 27, 2010, 12:26 PM   #1
The Scientist
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Going to make my 1st purchase, what am I overlooking?

I'm going to make my purchase this weekend for reloading equipment. I know that I will need a tumbler and powder scale... but what else am I overlooking. Or is any of this stuff redundent/overkill? I currently will be reloading for my 30-06 hunting rifle and 40 S&W handguns. I just recently purchased a dial calipers, should be here this next week.

1) Lee Modern Reloading, 2nd ed.
2) Lee Classic 4 Hole Turret Press
3) Lee Deluxe 3-die set, 30-06
4) Lee Deluxe Carbide 4-die 40 S&W
5) Lee Pro Auto Disk Powder Measure
6) Lee Auto Disk Rifle Powder Charging die 22-30 cal.
7) Lee Auto Disk Powder Measure Double Disk Kit
8) Lee Case trimmer Cutter & Lock Set
9) Lee Pocket Primer Cleaner
10) Lee Safety Primer Lg & Sm.
11) Hornady Chamfer Tool
12) Lee Case Length Gauge for 30-06 and 40 S&W
13) Frankford Arsenal Reloading Trays
14) Frankford Arsenal Elec. 6" Calipers
15) Lee Universal Shellholders, Pkg. of 11

That's my list, any help is appreciated.

Thanks,
Tom
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Old March 27, 2010, 12:50 PM   #2
Brian Pfleuger
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If you're only planning to load for those two calibers then the shellholder kit is redundant. The die sets include shellholders.

You might look at using a Lee Collet Neck Sizer and a Redding Body Die.

You'll also want to get something for lubing the rifle case necks. I recently purchased a Frankin Arsenol neck lube kit that uses dry mica.
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Last edited by Brian Pfleuger; March 27, 2010 at 01:25 PM. Reason: Reinsert Info
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Old March 27, 2010, 01:02 PM   #3
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Peetzakilla,

Question: With the Lee Collet Neck Sizer and Redding Body Die, are they used in addition to the Lee 3 Deluxe die set? Thanks.
Tom
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Old March 27, 2010, 01:35 PM   #4
Brian Pfleuger
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Well, the Lee Deluxe set includes the collet neck sizer so all you'd need is the Redding body die.

Note that I am passing on this information sort of third-party as I have just recently ordered these thing myself and have not even received them yet...

If understanding correctly, the Lee Collet Neck Sizer die is used for the neck because they produce about the best necks available and the body die is used to size the body and bump back the shoulder for proper headspacing. You end up with the same general effect as using a FL resizer but without giving up the better neck sizing properties of neck-only resizing.

So in the 4-hole turret press you would have:

Station One: Lee Collet Neck Sizer
Station Two: Redding Body Die
Station Three: Powder/Flare
Station Four: Bullet Seater/Crimp
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Old March 27, 2010, 01:36 PM   #5
Jim243
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Scientist

With the Deluxe 3 die set for 30-06 you get the Collet neck sizing die INSTEAD of the Factory Crimp die. If you are going to resize "once fired" brass from your own gun then this is OK. But on 30-06 you will want/need the Factory Crimp die, that comes with the 3 die Pacesetter die set, but does not include the Collet die. So if you go with the Deluxe die set you will need to purchase the Factory Crimp die seperately.

You will also need the "Lee Auto-Disk Riser" to keep your powder measure out of the way of your primer unit. It sits on top of the through dies and just under the powder measure.

You list looks very good and complete, the only thing I can think of is a Tumbler, I like the Lyman units and media (corn cobb).

Jim
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Old March 27, 2010, 01:51 PM   #6
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Your list looks pretty good. You will need the auto disk riser like Jim said, some way to lube 30-06 brass and a cheap hammer type bullet puller. RCBS bullet puller is a good one and guaranteed for life.
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Old March 27, 2010, 03:16 PM   #7
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I didn't see a powder scale. You need something to make sure the weight of the powder from the powder measure is correct.
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Old March 27, 2010, 03:52 PM   #8
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Quote:
but what else am I overlooking.
Most Lee stuff is junk.
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Old March 27, 2010, 04:14 PM   #9
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Manual; Shell Holders; Primer Flipper; Press Type(s)

Scientist Tom, welcome to the forum and to reloading.

I reloaded for 30 years without ever once using a tumbler to clean my brass. I just wiped them with soft cloth to keep debris out of my dies and contaminants at bay. My brass was not pretty, but was 100% functional. I have one now (a birthday gift) and my brass no longer embarrasses him at the range.

I recommend more than 1 reloading manual. Lee is widely known to be opinionated and self-promoting. ( However, the only thing more irritating than a grandstander is a grandstander whose self-promotion is justified. Isaac Asimov and Richard Lee share that distinction, in my view.) However, the Lee book's load data for any given cartridge is very narrow, almost to the point of uselessness. His discussions of the whys and hows of reloading, however will keep you engrossed in learning for years. Get a Lyman's Manual, too, and the ABC's of reloading (short on load data, but an excellent place for a new reloader to get familiar with the very basic basics).

Peetzakilla is right about the Lee Dies hincluding the appropriate shell holder for use in the press. However, I believe the Lee Priming Tools require a different shell holder. The 11-piece set is a good investment if you are planning on expanding your cartridge selection. You don't need two priming tools. One tool can do both large and small primers (however, switching between two entire tools is more convenient than converting one tool back and forth.)

If the priming tools come with primer flipper trays, good. If not, a primer flipper tray is really nice to have. I did not see one in your list.

(The following is an unsolicited opinion and against the OP's posting. If it offends anyone, please pretend it is not here.) Especially for the rifle cartridge, you will eventually want a good, strong, high leverage, single stage press. You could cut your investment a little by making that your first press and getting the Lee Turret later. The Lee Turret you get at that time could be a full-on progressive. That's what I would do. (In fact, that's what I did, though by accident rather than design.) I see very little reason for a turret press. For a small population of reloaders, they make sense, but single stages are generally stronger, stiffer and simpler. Progressives are faster.

Good luck

Lost Sheep

Last edited by Lost Sheep; March 27, 2010 at 04:15 PM. Reason: Modify my salutation
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Old March 27, 2010, 04:26 PM   #10
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Junk? What do Chinese boats have to do with it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrawesome22
Most Lee stuff is junk.
That's a pretty sweeping generalization. Most generalizations are off-base. Tom (The Scientist) seems to have selected away from Lee's more problematic equipment.

I understand your sentiment. My shooting buddy tried to use his Lee economy model single stage press as a grab-bar (he stumbled-and he is a big guy) and snapped it in two. The press came free with Lee's manual.

What I don't get is your emoticon. (the wink)


Respectfully,

Lost Sheep
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Old March 27, 2010, 04:33 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lost Sheep
Peetzakilla is right about the Lee Dies including the appropriate shell holder for use in the press. However, I believe the Lee Priming Tools require a different shell holder.
You're correct. The hand primer comes with flip trays for large and small primers, but you need shell holders specific to the Auto Prime
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Old March 27, 2010, 04:45 PM   #12
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Quote:
What I don't get is your emoticon. (the wink)
I figured he had read a lot about peoples problems with Lee stuff. Just trying to razz him a bit.

I own a couple Lee products.
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Old March 27, 2010, 05:20 PM   #13
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Well, I must say that my Lee Junk has produced alot of very good ammunition, with absolutely no problems what so ever.

to the OP I would suggest a good scale for checking powder throws.

Mike
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Old March 27, 2010, 05:36 PM   #14
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Quote:
You're correct. The hand primer comes with flip trays for large and small primers, but you need shell holders specific to the Auto Prime
Correct. He is getting the safety prime with the press and shouldn't need the shell holders for the auto prime.
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Old March 27, 2010, 06:17 PM   #15
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LOL, you cannot offend me, so continue to bring on the opinions. I am also a bowhunter, and spend a lot of time over on ArcheryTalk, so I am used to the strong opinions and generally good-natured ribbing between different manufacturers.

I appreciate all the info, and I will take it to heart. I've tried to balance expense & quality as I enter into this hobby, so that is why I have chosen the Classic Turret. I analyze things to death, hence the name Scientist... so I appreciate more info rather than too little.

Thanks again.

Tom
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Old March 27, 2010, 06:33 PM   #16
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I would reccomend a good powder scale. The Lee scale is accurate, and simple. Yet it can be a pain to read, and use. I bought a digital scale from Cabella's, for a price that I could afford. It works well.
If you are getting the Lee hand priming tool, I have one that came with my Breech Lock Challenger kit, it has a set of unversal shell holders, that work with the priming tool, and will also work with the Lee press. Also Lee die sets come with a shell holder.
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Old March 27, 2010, 07:25 PM   #17
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I haven't been anything less than satisfied with any of the Lee products I own. Ditto @ RCBS. I still trust my Rockchucker more than any other press (loads, primes... seats bearings - but don't try that at home)...
Good luck - stay safe.
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Old March 27, 2010, 08:14 PM   #18
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Cabela's and Kempf Gun Shop both offer reloading kits with the LCT press. Might save you some $$ and trouble.

+1 on the Lee Collet neck sizing die.

Get an extra turret plate so you can leave your two sets of dies set up in them. Just swap plates, primer sizes and powder measures, and you're ready to go.

You'll also want a bullet puller. You can either get the impact type (looks like a hammer), or I really like the Hornady cam-lock collet type puller. You might want another turret plate for it and any other one-off dies you might collect. You need collets for it for each caliber of bullet.

Andy
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Old March 27, 2010, 09:48 PM   #19
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A digital caliper is a good thing to have if you want to ensure the rounds are correct in all dimensions.

SatCong
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Old March 28, 2010, 01:07 AM   #20
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Am I the only one who saw that a powder scale was mentioned in his OP? It was not on the list because he felt it was so obvious.

If I may make one suggestion though, I recommend a balance type powder scale as opposed to the digital scales. I have found digitals to be way too hit and miss. They are often tooo influenced by your environment; flourscent lighting (and their ballast), the slightest breeze, and even your breathing. Plus batteries die, cords are messy on the bench.

But with a balance scale there are no batteries to replace, and you cant turn off gravity. (still susceptable to a certain degree of variation from air currents though)
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Old March 28, 2010, 01:35 AM   #21
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qcpunk you are correct we all overlooked the scale.

But he could get away with out using one because of the Autodisk Powder Measure. All though I have found it actually drops between 1 to 2 tens of a grain less than the stated amount on the Lee tables that come with it. Lee believes in loading by "Volume" not "Weight".

Last edited by Jim243; March 28, 2010 at 01:41 AM.
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Old March 28, 2010, 08:34 AM   #22
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I've found the autodisk to be between 5 and 10% low from Lee's predictions for Power Pistol, and 800x. IIRC, I am using the cavity that is supposed to be 8.7gr for Power Pistol and I'm getting 8.1gr. With 800x I use the cavity that's supposed to be 8.9gr and I get 8.1-8.4. It is very consistent with PP though. Personally, I would not trust the autodisk (or any other metering method) without confirming the weights on a scale. Particularly with powders that do not meter well.
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Old March 28, 2010, 10:57 AM   #23
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Your right Peetza (now don't fall down because I said that) it will depend on how well the powder meters. I use the Lee Micro-Disk on the Auto Disk unit (seperate purchase) and weigh till I get the exact charge, once it is set it doesn't vary and I can roll along, but still weigh every 15th charge.

I am going to stay out of the any descussion on the scale that will take up many many many pages of postings. I'll just say I have both a balance beam and electronic scale.

Good luck to all
Jim

The Micro-Disk can NOT be used for rifle charges only pistol. A scale should be used with the double disk kit.

Last edited by Jim243; March 28, 2010 at 11:03 AM.
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Old March 28, 2010, 11:34 AM   #24
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Quote:
I've found the autodisk to be between 5 and 10% low from Lee's predictions for Power Pistol, and 800x. IIRC, I am using the cavity that is supposed to be 8.7gr for Power Pistol and I'm getting 8.1gr. With 800x I use the cavity that's supposed to be 8.9gr and I get 8.1-8.4. It is very consistent with PP though.
My findings have been very similar to yours, Pete. I would like to add that if you use cast lead bullets in combination with a FCD, the PAD will throw a bit closer to its published charges. I believe that the reason for this is because cast bullets are a little larger in diameter when compared to jacketed, and therefore they are harder to run into the FCD. This extra resistance causes the powder in the measure to settle, thus creating a larger charge than you would normally see with jacketed. YMMV.
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Old March 28, 2010, 10:35 PM   #25
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Quote:
Lee believes in loading by "Volume" not "Weight".
This must be why their scale is so terrible?

That is $20 I'll never get back! Live and learn LOL.
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