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Old June 24, 2000, 03:29 PM   #1
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Join Date: March 25, 1999
Location: KS
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What sort of around-the-house items do you folks use at the loading bench? Maybe some of us can find other uses for common things we hadn't thought about yet.
I found that Gladware (the disposable "Tupperware") is great for storing brass & bullets - they're stackable and transparent so you can readialy see what's in 'em.
Avery stick-on labels available at the stationery dept. are great for labeling boxes with bullet weight, powder charge etc. I also use them to record the mileage and put them under the hood of my vehicles when I change the oil. Try to find the "removable" kind if you can.
Anybody got any more ideas?
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Old June 25, 2000, 09:40 AM   #2
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A couple of variations on the plastic container.
1) 5 qt ice cream tubs make great "bulk brass" containers. I usually use 2 in each caliber, 1 for just-fired, dirty brass, and the other for tumbled brass.
2) zip loc bags and business cards make absolutely foolproof organizers for the "now add .2 grains and see what happens" rifle loading sequences. No matter how carefully I place the loaded ammo in a conventional box, cats, kids, or clumsiness will ensure that I can't tell what is what by the time I get to the range.
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Old June 25, 2000, 01:02 PM   #3
Paul B.
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Here's a couple of my tricks. Try a Sharpie brand fine point marker. I use one to number brass when testing new loads. For example, say I have 5 different charges of the same powder. Load #1 gets the number 1 on the base of the shell, and on the side as well. Likewise for numbers 2 through 5. Usually the one on the side holds up better on firing, but sometimes it's the other way around. Keeps track of the loads in the box, and you can remeasure case expansion as a double check after you get back home.
Cleaning primer pockets can be a real pain in the posterial region when you have a large amount to do. Dremel makes a cordless tool called, I think, the Mighty-Mite. They have a brush, similar to the brushed RCBS sells for their hand tool. Makes quick work of dirty primer pockets. For real stubborn pockets, I use the point of a dart, and run it on the outside edge of the inside of the pocket. This will break up the residue enough that the Dremel will clean everything up real nice.(Some primers brands seem to leave more residue than others.)
For those of you who sometimes use the Lee "hammer the shell" loading dies, try and find one of the little units that converts a hand drill into a drill press. I got one for nothing, and the only hammering I have to do now is to remove the casing from the neck sizing die. It makes it a bit easier if you lube the neck first.
If you do cast bullets, take a very large nail and flatten the point. Great little tool for pushing dacron filler up against the powder.
If you have a Dollar store in your area, check it out. I got plastic containers about 12x6x5 inches for a buck each. I bought 50, and every one is filled to capacity with various brass, cast bullet accessories, cleaning equipment, and other odds and ends.
Clear fingernail polish is good for holding scope screws. Lipstick, thinned with Vaseline makes a good substitute for dykem when inletting a stock. Messy as heck, though.
If you have a powder funnel of aluminum that has the real small spout to fit inside .22 brass, hijack a few straws from McDonalds. Yhey fit real well over the spout, and makes a fine longer drop tube for brass fron .243 on up.
These are a few if the "kinks" I've worked up over the years. I would imagine that if I were to go out to my shed where I reload, I could probably dig up a few more.
Paul B.
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Old June 25, 2000, 09:09 PM   #4
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Thanks Paul. I have to agree about Dollar Stores....
I bought a kitchen funnel and a small wire sifter to transfer powder from the keg to the measure and back. The sifter helps to keep out extraneous bits of car fur, dust bunnies and so on.
I also use either "Gladware" or Dollar Store plastics for bulk piles of handgun ammo. It's much easier to load magazines or speedloaders from "bin" than a "rack".

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