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Old February 2, 2013, 03:56 PM   #1
cdbeagle
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How much will it cost for reloading equipment?

I am going to start reloading, I would rather do it sooner than later. I have $600.00 today which will be increased to $900.00 by the end of the month.

I have read the sticky - For the New Reloader: Equipment Basics -- READ THIS FIRST

For rifles I will initially load 6.5x55 and .223 and eventually load the rest of the calibers I own - 30-06, .30-.30, .270 and .243.

For handguns I will start with .380 and .38 Sp and down the road load 9MM Luger, 9MM Makarov and .45 ACP.

I know I can only afford one press at the outset to load handgun and rifle so what is the best press for loading rifle and pistol ammo? I don't care whether it is single, turret or progressive.

How much is the package going to cost to get me started? I am talking about the cost of the equipment only, excluding the cost of primers, brass, powder and bullets.
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Last edited by cdbeagle; February 2, 2013 at 05:20 PM.
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Old February 2, 2013, 04:41 PM   #2
Misssissippi Dave
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You said you want to load both pistol and rifle. To stay within your budget you will probably be best off with the Lee Classic Turret. Check to see if you can find one in a kit. That will give you most of what you need and possibly everything for the beginning except dies and something to clean the brass with. There are plenty of ways to clean brass from cheap to expensive. Just depends on your available time and how involved you want to get. Lee dies probably will work as well. Get carbide dies and I suggest getting the 4 die sets for pistol. I don't think you will find any carbide rifle dies. A good manual is one thing to add to the list.
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Old February 2, 2013, 04:45 PM   #3
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after its all said and done, you might as well take out a second and third mortgage.
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Old February 2, 2013, 04:52 PM   #4
Brian Pfleuger
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I will second the Lee Classic turret, unless you are shooting enough that loading 200 rounds an hour, plus or minus, isn't enough, then you'll need to go full progressive.

The $600 you already have is enough to buy everything you need.

The one item I'd "splurge" on is either an RCBS Chargemaster Combo or the Hornady LnL version. You're looking at about $300 there, but as I've said many times before, the first time you use one it's like a light shines down from heaven and a choir of angels sing.
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Old February 2, 2013, 05:02 PM   #5
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This is a good choice and includes most of what you will need.
http://www.midwayusa.com/product/785...dex-deluxe-kit

I recommend you start with 45acp and/or 38spl. The most forgiving rounds to reload, till you get some experience.
http://www.midwayusa.com/product/242...die-set-45-acp

http://www.midwayusa.com/product/309...ial-357-magnum
All are backordered now but will be in stock soon.
I wouldn’t recommend anything else till you find out what works for “you”.
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Old February 2, 2013, 05:47 PM   #6
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I've got some...

I've got 20 .380 casings that were fired once. thet're not cleaned or polished or deprimed, but they are in good condition(for something that just got shot) They would be great practice for your first reload. They're yours for $10, and that includes shipping. (Unless you live in China or Alaska and the shipping is astronomical
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Old February 2, 2013, 06:42 PM   #7
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It really depends on what type of equipment you end up buying. You can go completely basic setup for $100-$300. Id say your best bet is to pick up a Hornady Classic kit or RCBS Kit which will include everything you need for under $500. Its the best way to go for a first time reloader and very good quality stuff.
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Old February 2, 2013, 08:31 PM   #8
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Budget Beginning Bench you will never outgrow

Welcome to the forum and thanks for asking our advice.

Bold subject line, eh? Let me qualify it down. I load for handgun only; 5 calibers, about 100-400 rounds per session and about 5,000-10,000 rounds a year. If this comes close to describing your situation, you might like to read on.

35 years after starting, I found I outgrew some gear and overbought elsewhere. So, I cleaned house. I emptied my bench and populated it with the best equipment I could find precisely fitting my loading needs. I could have saved a lot of experimentation and waste if I had known back then what I know now (about handloading and about myself).

Informed by my experience reconstituting my loading bench, I compiled a list of the barest essentials that would allow a novice loader to load well and which would still be gratifying in 30 years. (In my opinion and somewhat matching my style of shooting and loading.)

Here's a link to the thread that describes what I did.

http://www.rugerforum.net/reloading/...andloader.html

I think it makes an ideal shopping list for the handloader just starting out. I hope you do, too.

For 5 calibers, $700 plus shipping to duplicate my entire current loading bench with all new stuff, misc accessories and tools. About $45 per caliber for extra dies and turrets. I am not in the least bit inconvenienced in my loading endeavors-no compromises.

Thanks to Sue Kempf at Kempf's Gun Shop, and Mark and the guys at Factory Direct Sales and the technicians in Customer Support at Lee Precision.

Good luck

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Old February 2, 2013, 08:36 PM   #9
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Quote:
I know I can only afford one press at the outset to load handgun and rifle so what is the best press for loading rifle and pistol ammo? I don't care whether it is single, turret or progressive.

How much is the package going to cost to get me started? I am talking about the cost of the equipment only, excluding the cost of primers, brass, powder and bullets.
Minimum, slightly over $100, plus as many die sets as you need.

Done right (the way I think would be right), closer to $300, plus die sets.

Die sets, for Lee (cheapest you're going to find), I think they're a bit over $30 for a 3 die pistol die set at this point.

By right, I'm thinking the Lee Classic Turret kit, plus a few extra items needful for rifle loading (trimmer, caliper, maybe some other stuff). Get as many turrets as you have die sets. They're inexpensive. Remove the indexing rod, and use it as a manually advanced turret, until you understand the process.

Quote:
For handguns I will start with .380 and .38 Sp and down the road load 9MM Luger, 9MM Makarov and .45 ACP.
Any one of them will be an OK place to start.
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Old February 2, 2013, 08:44 PM   #10
lee n. field
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Oh, yeah, buy a manual, or the ABCs of Reloading book, first. Read.
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Old February 2, 2013, 08:47 PM   #11
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Quote:
How much will it cost for reloading equipment?
Considerably less than if you continue to buy factory ammo ...... provided you, you know ...... actually shoot your guns.
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Old February 2, 2013, 09:02 PM   #12
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Lee Classic Turret kit and dies from FS reloading. Gets you a manual to start and you will need the case length gauges for each rifle calibre (don't bother for pistol) to use the kits trimmer and a digital calipre to measure case and ammo lengths. Later you can pick up other manuals and a different scale if you don't like the Lee. Save the tumbler and other fancy tools for later after you have a good foundation of loading experience.

All you need to do is wipe clean, size, trim (or check if needed) debur, reprime, measure and charge powder, seat new bullet. Many other processes and their tools are optional if you need or choose to do them.
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Old February 2, 2013, 09:18 PM   #13
cdbeagle
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I will go with a turret press, either a Lee or Hornady kit as mentioned above. The info I read on the Lee talks about it as a handgun ammo reloader. Will it work okay for rifle? I plan on reloading a lot of .223 for the forseeable future.

Who votes for the Lee and who favors the Hornady?

And thank all of you for the responses so far.
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Old February 2, 2013, 09:35 PM   #14
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C&H makes a really nice single stage press that is at least twice as fast as most, and it handles pistol and most rifle cartridges. I don't know how it compares to a turret press:

http://www.ch4d.com/catalog/presses/044000

They show up on eBay sometimes; that's where I bought mine, but right now the prices are crazy and they are selling old rusty 3-station presses for about the same as buying a new 4-station one direct.
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Old February 2, 2013, 09:45 PM   #15
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Don't skimp on a good scale. I recommend the ohaus or RCBS 1010.
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Old February 3, 2013, 05:24 AM   #16
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Ive been going over this with a friend of mine. I think you need to start somewhere. I would start with straight wall pistol stuff and move on from that. I probably got a few thousand in my set up, but thats over a few years.
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Old February 3, 2013, 05:46 AM   #17
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I started with the Lee Deluxe Turret kit and .38 Spl dies. Very forgiving round to load for, and I'm more than happy with the press.
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Old February 3, 2013, 07:02 AM   #18
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If you are looking at lee check out kempf's they have a lee kit that they put together with one set of dies i believe it was about 219.00 lee turret www.kempfgunshop.com
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Old February 3, 2013, 08:33 AM   #19
salvadore
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CD, if it was me and I was starting out anew, I would get a progressive press that handles rifle and pistol cartridges. I spent years slaving away with a single stage press. In the eighties I bught a Dillon Square Deal and never looked back for handgun cartridges. If I shot rifles cartridges in mass I would buy a progressive to handle that job.

I've never been able to load 200 rounds per hour on a turret press. I'm pretty sure I could load rounds faster on a single stage.

I have one of each and if you decide to go with something other than a progressive, be sure you mount it next to a wall so you have something handy to bang your head against.

Last edited by salvadore; February 3, 2013 at 08:40 AM.
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Old February 3, 2013, 08:39 AM   #20
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Oh yeah, almost forgot, shortly after I purchased the Square Deal, Dillon shipped me the parts to make it a Square Deal B. Anyway I've had it like 25, 30 years loading uncountable rounds. Just finished a run of 1000 .45ACPs in about 3 or 4 hours of casual loading.

Now ask me how long it took to cast size and lube the bullets I used.
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Old February 3, 2013, 09:06 AM   #21
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Look on Craigslist for your area for some in 'very good condition' used equipment. Make the purchase in person. Find someone who is knowledgeable, and see if they will go with you, so they can check it out. If you purchase new, make your purchase at a place that accepts returns, in case you're not satisfied. The Lee stuff, is good, but will need some TLC. Stock up on brass, primers, and powder. Consider casting your own projectiles.
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Old February 3, 2013, 09:27 AM   #22
Brian Pfleuger
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Quote:
Originally Posted by salvadore
I've never been able to load 200 rounds per hour on a turret press. I'm pretty sure I could load rounds faster on a single stage.
I don't know what kind of turret presses you've used, but 200 rounds an hour with a Lee Classic turret and an on-press powder dispenser is not difficult. No way could a single stage come close, requiring you to handle every case at least 3 (and maybe up to 5) times instead of 1. Even if it only takes 3 seconds each time you handle a case, you'd be adding at least 20 minutes time to process 200 rounds and that's not counting whatever time it takes to swap the dies.
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Old February 3, 2013, 10:08 AM   #23
salvadore
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Must be me Brian, I use a Lee turret, not the classic. Not only is it slow, I don't like having to settle for the closest powder charge that works, When set up for 32/20s I have to run the shell so it touches the powder actuator then turn the brass a smidge so it doesn't ruin the mouth of the case. I use it, for .45 Colts, 8mm Mauser, 32 win spec. and 32/20s and .223s. To get the load I want I size and prime the 8mms 32 spec and .223s brass and then charge with my rcbs powder hopper finish them on an rcbs single stage press. I do like Lee dies, particularly the crimp die, but for me the turret is no speed demon.
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Old February 3, 2013, 10:29 AM   #24
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Quote:
I will go with a turret press, either a Lee or Hornady kit as mentioned above. The info I read on the Lee talks about it as a handgun ammo reloader. Will it work okay for rifle? I plan on reloading a lot of .223 for the forseeable future.

Who votes for the Lee and who favors the Hornady?

And thank all of you for the responses so far.
I don't think Hornady makes a turret press. I have owned my Lee classic turret press for around seven years now. I have loaded a lot of 223 on my CT. I can shoot sub MOA with that ammo if I do my part. I also know a couple of guys that load 30-06 on a CT in auto index mode. Make sure you get the classic turret and not the deluxe turret. I agree with Brian also. I am loading close to 200 RPH at a comfortable pace. Actually for loading 223 after case prep is done and I'm just dropping the charge, seating and crimping I'm closer to 250 to 300 per hour. The classic turret is also fast and easy to change claibers and primers sizes.
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Old February 3, 2013, 10:37 AM   #25
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shop for supplies first

reloading takes more money than just a press.
Accessories can cost as much or more than the basics.

More importantly right now, my understanding is that ammo goes in this priority:

1. military
2. law enforcement
3. manufacturers
4. reloaders


If this is true, then you won't see primers until after you start seeing ammo.

If the intent is to reload for the long haul and you can find bullets and primers, go for it.

If you are trying to get around the lack of available ammo, you may be getting at the back of the line.

check out supplies before you spend a dime.
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