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Old January 21, 2013, 03:30 PM   #1
Magnum Wheel Man
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been thinking progressively, & think I talked myself out of a progressive...

anyone play the multiple single stage press game ??? I reload alot of different cartridges & currently have 3 single stage presses... in my temp loading area ( where I've reloaded the last 15 years ) I only have room for one press & my case prep center at a time... my new permanent loading area, has space for 4-5 presses...

one of my problems, with making the switch to progressives, is I load for around 75 different calibers, & the progressives would be of limited use to me... I started thinking, what if I set up 3-4 presses, all to be used for a single stage of reloading, I'd bang out 50, move to the next press, bang out that stage, move over to the next... won't be as fast as a good working progessive, but would be functional for every cartridge I reload...

crazy ???
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Old January 21, 2013, 03:50 PM   #2
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Depends on what floats your boat. If you have a couple of hand gun calibers that you load quite a bit for, then I think the progressive will be money well spent, but if you have a bunch that you just load a few for and you don't usually load for than a 100 or so then I think it would probably be a waste of money.
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Old January 21, 2013, 03:54 PM   #3
Brian Pfleuger
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one of my problems, with making the switch to progressives, is I load for around 75 different calibers, & the progressives would be of limited use to me... I started thinking, what if I set up 3-4 presses, all to be used for a single stage of reloading, I'd bang out 50, move to the next press, bang out that stage, move over to the next... won't be as fast as a good working progessive, but would be functional for every cartridge I reload...
Sounds like you need a Lee Classic turret. If you're going to pull the handle 4 or 5 times per finished round, you might as well do it all on one press.
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Old January 21, 2013, 03:58 PM   #4
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Something else you could think about to is a Lee Classic torret press with auto indexing and have spare torrets for it set up in the different calibers. The torrets are cheap compared to buying muliple single stage presses and the LCT is faster.

Take a look at it and see what you think. You would buy one press, different torrets and both primer feeds. You apparently already have all the dies. Once the torrets are set up you just swap them out, it takes a few seconds.
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Old January 21, 2013, 04:00 PM   #5
Magnum Wheel Man
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well that's an option... turrets are $13.00... ( at Midway )

so since I'm not familiar with the Lee turret press, I assume it can only be used with turrets ??? there is not a provision for a single die, or a turret is there ???

( thinking the press would be worthless for any cartridges I hadn't boght a turret for yet )

just looked at the PDF instructions, & looks like it only works with the turrets...
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Old January 21, 2013, 04:09 PM   #6
springer99
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Yes, the Lee Classic Cast works only with 4 hole turrets, but it's the most practical way to bridge the gap between single stage and true progressive presses. If you choose to remove the indexing rod from it, you can even still use it as a single stage press.

I, for one, wouldn't even consider using multiple single stage presses to load individual functions of a reload. Way too much moving around and chance for spilling things, etc. Plus, the mere though of having to adjust single dies in multiple presses each time I changed calibers give me serious heartburn.

Really, the Lee CC turret is the best solution that I would recommend. Once you add turrets for each caliber you want to load for(at least for the most popular of them) and adjust the dies, you're all set.
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Old January 21, 2013, 04:10 PM   #7
Brian Pfleuger
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The classic turret works only with turrets, yes, but you can get them for closer to $10 than $13. The turrets are not die/caliber specific. You could have one turret if you wanted and swap the dies... if you wanted. Obviously, 75 would get pricey, though you might be able to get a quantity discount. The way I do it is just buy a turret every time I buy a new set of dies.

Also, it does not need to be auto-advance. You just remove the rod that advances the press and it operates exactly like a single stage, or a manual advance turret.
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Old January 21, 2013, 04:13 PM   #8
rajbcpa
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You load for 75 different calibers? Really?

Yikes. I would stay with a SS. ...buying dozens of shell plates for a progressive would bankrupt most people.

I load for only 6, so a progressive is perfect. I use a Dillon 550 and it runs well without issues.
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Old January 21, 2013, 04:13 PM   #9
Magnum Wheel Man
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sounds like the ticket... how are the turrets for staying "tight" over lots of use ??? that's the only thing I can think of, I would hate for it to get sloppy on me... a Rock Chucker will stay real tight for all practical purposes, for ever... more moving parts, the more there is to wear out... so wondering about the Lee turret mechanism...
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Old January 21, 2013, 04:16 PM   #10
Brian Pfleuger
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I edited that last post, don't know when you saw it...

I'm not a high volume loader by any means but I don't see the turrets wearing out.

I've loaded perhaps 400 rounds of 357sig on one turret. It looks like brand new still. I can't say much beyond that.

I load ammo that shoots under 1/2 MOA consistently in more than one cartridge too, so the press is doing it's part for consistency.
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Old January 21, 2013, 04:19 PM   #11
serf 'rett
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Turret has room for mounting four dies. If you didn't want to invest in powder through expander dies, you could still batch load on the turret as follows:
1. Size, prime & expand batch.
2. Charge cases
3. Seat and crimp batch.

The time savings comes from setting up one set of dies in a turret dedicated to one particular caliber. Want to change calibers? Just swap to another turret set up for different caliber. Once the dies are set up, only minor adjustments may be needed to start loading a different caliber.
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Old January 21, 2013, 04:30 PM   #12
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in fairness on die set ups, if I used one press for each "job", the dies would then be set up for each press, they would always be going into the same press, so there would be no need to re-set up the dies each time... ( provided I've replaced the Lee dies I have, with better lock rings )... of which I have changed out about 1/2... hate those O-ring lock nuts

I guess I was suprised how "reasonable" the Lee turret press cost, & I still have 2 Rock Chuckers, & an RCBS Junior to add to the bench... so I could go with my original plan to start, ( leaving one extra turret empty to add a single die as needed ) or just use the turret press, for each caliber as I add them to the set up...

so... how do you guys store your turrets with dies in them ??? I just built a shelf that holds die boxes nicely, if I go the turret route, I'll have to look for a way of storing alot of turrets
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Old January 21, 2013, 04:33 PM   #13
Brian Pfleuger
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Lee makes a round die storage box that you turn the bottom upside down and the whole turret fits in there with the dies installed.

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Old January 21, 2013, 04:36 PM   #14
Magnum Wheel Man
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OH... that's why they make those goofy round boxes... ( I hate those )
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Old January 21, 2013, 04:41 PM   #15
Brian Pfleuger
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Oddly, as best I can figure anyway, they weren't actually made for the turrets. They're supposed to be use right side up with the individual die in the holes but the turret fits exactly right if the bottom is upside down.
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Old January 21, 2013, 04:42 PM   #16
springer99
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"so... how do you guys store your turrets with dies in them ??? I just built a shelf that holds die boxes nicely, if I go the turret route, I'll have to look for a way of storing alot of turrets "

I've seen photos from some guys who have made a small wooden shelf and used a circle saw to cut-out the right diameter to just sit the turrets/dies into for storage. Just like them being installed in the press.

Me, I only load for about 5-6 rounds and, being cheap, I just set them on the shelf where I keep my powder scale, funnels, and other small stuff. They sit pretty flat, except for the de-capping pin sticking out.
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Old January 21, 2013, 04:54 PM   #17
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I have loaded for over 50 years and load over 165 calibers. I did it as a commercial business for a 20 year span.

The most common shell plate used is for the .473 case head which is the 30-06, 308, 270, 280, 7mm, 243,22-250 etc you should know those. the second is the .378 case head for the 222,223, and all the variants.
You obviously did not start at the current capacity of 75 different cartridges over night, It took time to build up to it.

I think the most versatile loader on the market is the 550 from Dillion. I know Mike personalty. His no bull warranty is the best there is. no bull s**t.

The 550 has a aluminum die block that is removable and is one of the best self aligning on the market.

Now you will need a die block for your calibers, there were a few that I had to switch around from block to block. They were for the more unusual dies such as the 505 Gibbs or the .33 Winchester and your 285 Luft Magnum.

It takes a little while to get all the die tool holders you want, but in the mean time you can use the single stage press. at least you started.
As for shell plate holders go 380ACP will hold 223, 30-30 and 44 mag will work. most all cases will fit just a few shell holders and will work or get you by until you need to have the actual plate.
Resize on your single stage and then prime and load on your Dillion if the shell plate is not quite the right size for your 32-40 your loading. it is still a lot faster than single staging through it!
I would recommend the 650 but it will cost you more and ball powder works best on the Dillions.
just start and build from there.

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Old January 21, 2013, 05:04 PM   #18
Magnum Wheel Man
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Now that EDWARD went & talked about shell plates... I don't have 3 shell holders for each die set, so that's an outlay I wasn't thinking about with the multiple press set up...

... My buddy has a Dillion 550, & seems like alot of parts to buy... but I do have alot of '06 sized bases, & 223, with the Contenders, & the 30-30 cases & 223 seem to make up a good portion of parent cases for those...
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Old January 21, 2013, 05:33 PM   #19
grubbylabs
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I still think you would be best served by getting the progressive set up for the calibers you load the most of and using the single stage for the ones you don't shoot to much of.

Plus like Edward said, if you stop and think about what shell plates you buy, you can get more than one cartridge out of it.

Not that I think the Lee turret would be a bad press, but it sounds to me like you would be better served with a true progressive if you have that many single stages already.
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Old January 21, 2013, 05:43 PM   #20
Magnum Wheel Man
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I'm still thinking... & since I'm still building the bench, I have a little time...

I guess if I were buying today, I think I'd either do the Turret, or the 550...
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Old January 21, 2013, 05:58 PM   #21
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Quote:
"so... how do you guys store your turrets with dies in them ???
This is how I store them.

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Old January 21, 2013, 05:59 PM   #22
m&p45acp10+1
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With a turret you would still be using the same dies you already have, as well as their respective shell holders. If you do not want to buy a lot of turrets you do not have to. Simply screw the dies out of the turret the same way you do with a single stage. Though with the Lee Classic Turret you can use tha auto index with the Pro Auto Disc powder measure, and the safty prime system.

Goes kinda like this.

1 Screw in dies, and adjust. If you have the lock rings set then all you have to is screw them in. As well as put the shell holder in.

2 Set the powder measure cavity that gives the charge weight you want.

3.set the safety prime for the primer size you are loading.

4. Insert fired still primed case. Pull handle that Sizes/Decapps.

5. On down stroke press the safty prime to the primer cup. A primer is placed. Go all the way down with the ram to seat the primer.

6 Stoke the ram again it will auto advance to the expaner for pistol rounds. If you have a Lee die set then powder will drop through when the case is expanded.

7 down stroke. Then place a bullet on the round. Guide it as you go on an upstroke to seat/crimp.

8 If you have the factory crimp die, or have another die set up to crimp for revolver rounds then the die would be in station 4 pull handle again to finsh the round.

Round done.

I do not own a Turret yet. I did use a friends, and speeds thing up over batch loading by a wide margin for hand gun ammo by a lot.
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Old January 21, 2013, 07:15 PM   #23
lee n. field
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Quote:
anyone play the multiple single stage press game ??? I reload alot of different cartridges & currently have 3 single stage presses... in my temp loading area ( where I've reloaded the last 15 years ) I only have room for one press & my case prep center at a time... my new permanent loading area, has space for 4-5 presses...
You need something like this. Or this.



Quote:
one of my problems, with making the switch to progressives, is I load for around 75 different calibers, & the progressives would be of limited use to me... I started thinking, what if I set up 3-4 presses, all to be used for a single stage of reloading, I'd bang out 50, move to the next press, bang out that stage, move over to the next... won't be as fast as a good working progessive, but would be functional for every cartridge I reload...

crazy ???
Yup. Crazy.

Seriously, take a look at Lee's Classic Turret.

I picked one up last month. I really like it.
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Old January 21, 2013, 07:20 PM   #24
lee n. field
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Turret has room for mounting four dies. If you didn't want to invest in powder through expander dies, you could still batch load on the turret as follows:
1. Size, prime & expand batch.
2. Charge cases
3. Seat and crimp batch.
There's a guy with a video on youtube, that does it this way:

1 -- size and prime
2 -- bell and charge (with a RCBS Uniflow and auto linkage)
3 -- automatic bullet feeder (looks like he might have made it himself -- bullets stack in a PVC tube on top of the die)
4 -- seat and crimp

And he has a little kicker thing to knock the completed round off the press into a tray.

Slick.
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Old January 21, 2013, 08:14 PM   #25
Valerko
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I'll second the turret press
Check it out , might help

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=ORugFVD_-wE
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