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Old May 22, 2010, 09:55 PM   #51
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Having no wooden dowels I always used shish-ka-bob sticks
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Old May 22, 2010, 11:55 PM   #52
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STP works great for sizing lube and a lot cheaper! Just put it on your pad and use like the more expensive stuff. You will notice the resizing takes less effort on your press too. Dont forget to put a little on your ram and pivot points.
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Old May 23, 2010, 12:19 PM   #53
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Bausch & Lomb Visor

the only thing I can add at this time is something that helps my 55 year old eyes. I use a magnifying visor whenever doing anything requiring close up work and inspection and it always ends up on my head during reloading. I bought mine from Grainger a few years ago, they can be found at:

and probably other places.

Thanks for all the info.
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Old May 23, 2010, 08:22 PM   #54
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Case/media sorter:
Get two 5- gallon buckets.
1 piece of ¼ " hardware cloth about a foot square.
Hot melt glue gun

Cut the top off of one of the buckets (handle end) to make it about 8" tall or so and name it "piece #1". Set it on the hardware cloth and use a sharpie marker to trace around the inside to mark the hardware cloth. Cut the hardware cloth into a rough circle 1" outside of the marks (making a circle of hardware cloth 2" larger diameter than the marked one) Make "V" shaped relief cuts from the outer edge to the marked circle. Bend the edges of the hardware cloth along the marks to make it a 1"tall flat bottomed basket. Get the bottom of the bucket that "piece #1" came from, flip it bottom-up on the bench. Set "piece #1" over it, loosely and handle up, using "V" trimmings of hardware cloth all around as spacers between the two pieces. Mark line with sharpie around the bucket bottom using "piece #1" as a guide and another line 2" further down around it. Cut along lines to make a band (throwing away the first band cut off. Place hardware cloth basket over small end of band and press it down into "piece #1"until it’s about a half inch from the bottom. "Caulk" the joint between bucket and band all around, on top and bottom with hot melt glue.
The piece made makes a nifty strainer that fits into the top of the other 5 gallon bucket. Dump mix of cases and media, grab handle and twist back and forth a couple of times quickly and the stuff is sorted.. Also, you are left with a handy, heavy-duty, flat bottom bowl that your wife can’t gripe about you using.
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Old May 23, 2010, 11:46 PM   #55
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This I got from Brian Enos.

Use Hornady One Shot spray lube on your pistol cases. Yes, I know, you use carbide dies and don't need lube. Well, I wish I'd heard of the tip a lot sooner. The lube makes sizing much easier on my Dillon 550B. And, it dries and you DON'T HAVE TO WIPE IT OFF.
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Old May 24, 2010, 08:57 AM   #56
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Anther issue learned the hard way !

Have you ever left powder in your hopper and finished for the night, then for some reason not finding time to get back to it for a time.
Now you go sit down for another reloading session and you draw a blank on the powder in the hopper, also has happened with my primers, So my new rule that I am trying to follow, is to keep loading until the powder is empty, or you run out of some component, then dump the hopper back in the containers, I still need to find me an appropriate funnel for this task.
Some have mentioned about the hoppers getting stained from the powder sitting for a long time also.
I have a spirile notebook open to my current load project, dates and all load info for that session. Was hoping this would keep me organized, but it don't work when I flip back to another earlier load page to build some of those rounds.
I think I'm going to have to do the sticky note pads, but I hate those things.
So far I have not had any stupids, only had to unload a few rounds made in error. Goofed up some overbelled 38 cases last night, I just tossed them as while trying to reclaim them with the case sizer die, they just went crunch oh well. I do have a scrap container of junk cases and zillions of spent primers.
This may be worth a few dollars someday.

Keep learning and stay safe.

Duane USN/ret
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Old May 24, 2010, 11:56 AM   #57
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I have a 12" X 12" ceramic tile on my load bench and whatever I am loading goes on the tile. The jug of powder, the box of primers even if empty, and the bullet. That way there is no confusion if I leave and come back tomorrow to finish.
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Old May 24, 2010, 12:56 PM   #58
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Love that bench.....what's the little plastic looking things on the edge of the bench ? Where's your presses ? I'm assuming these are somehow related, show a pic with them on....
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Old May 24, 2010, 02:47 PM   #59
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I have a 12" X 12" ceramic tile on my load bench and whatever I am loading goes on the tile. The jug of powder, the box of primers even if empty, and the bullet. That way there is no confusion if I leave and come back tomorrow to finish.
I keep the "active" components on the bench, as well. However, I write the load down (with the exception of OAL) on one of my reloading labels before starting. It stays next to the press, or on the loading block (if there's room) until the load is complete.

I also use procedures that allow me to leave at any given time, with the only possible negatives being powder exposed to slightly elevated humidity (there's a fish tank in my reloading room), and my scale not being covered - with the beam still on its knife edge pivot points. Aside from those minor drawbacks, I can return at any time, and know exactly what was going on.
("slightly elevated humidity" is pretty relative. "Elevated" levels here are still lower than much of the country.)

No need to see if the cases were charged... I only charge one at a time, immediately before seating a bullet.
No need to see if I got to die adjustment... I leave them backed way out of the press if I haven't adjusted them for the load yet.
No need to check my OAL again... Once I set the length for a load, I lock my calipers at that measurement. (The calipers don't get touched until the measurement is written down.)

No need to worry about accidents with non-standard loads... If I'm working with something like Blue Dot reduced rifle loads, or am working with improvised data - my standard checks and balances are ignored. If I have to leave and come back, I recheck everything.
My standard set of checks and balances works very well for me (there are more than what was listed), but there is never a one-size-fits-all answer. With the non-standard loads, I don't take any chances.
"Such is the strange way that man works -- first he virtually destroys a species and then does everything in his power to restore it."
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Old May 24, 2010, 03:51 PM   #60
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Don't even try it. If it has Federal, AMERC, or Fiocchi on the head, toss it or save it for scrap.
One correction, if it has FEDERAL, 30-06 SPRG, don't throw them away, send them to me. ( I mean it, I'll buy your once fired Federa brass)

I know that many don't like them, but my Remington 700 works very well with Federal cases, and I have some that I have reloaded well over 30 times.

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Old May 24, 2010, 09:15 PM   #61
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Love that bench.....what's the little plastic looking things on the edge of the bench ? Where's your presses ? I'm assuming these are somehow related, show a pic with them on....
Assuming that I'm getting the right thing, perhaps this pick will explain:

I use the same thing for my Classic Cast press:

I developed this system before I bought the progressive; I place a case in the shellholder, then size it. As the hand comes back up with the handle, I pop the case off the shellholder into the bin, while the left hand grabs the next one. If one doesn't have to actually grab the case off the shellholder, one can really move a bunch of brass through in a hurry.

I do the same thing when i seat bullets w/ the single-stage, I grab a loaded case from the loading block with left hand, right hand grabs bullet, seats it, I pull the handle, and while I'm doing that, my left hand is grabbing another case. When the ram comes down I pop the completed round off the shellholder into the bin with my right middle finger, and the left hand is right there to put another case in the shellholder.

Since you asked about the presses:

I originally mounted presses on the large bench, but realized I still wanted it for cleaning guns, sorting brass, etc. etc. So I have them mounted on the small bench:

Here's my dremel setup; I have a vacuum under the bench, connected to a metal extension wand I've screwed to the side of the bench. When I flip the power strip switch, both the dremel and the vacuum turn on. Anything I grind off is sucked down the vacuum. I've used it to cut golf club shafts, brass cases that are stuck in a die, brass cases I want to cut apart and see what's inside, and so on:

I also have a scale which is on a sub shelf; gets it up and out of the way. Next to it is a pick I use for all sorts of things, cleaning, you-name-it. I keep it stuck in a cork I inserted into the side of the shelf after drilling a hole for the cork:

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Old May 26, 2010, 02:33 AM   #62
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Place the brass you are sizing, decapping etc in the shell holder with the hand you operate the handle of the press with. This will keep you from learning the messy/bloody way what a decapping pin does to your index finger.

It is amazing that when you feel resistance on the press handle your instinct is to push harder no matter how much pain it is causing to your other hand.
I've got the scar on my left-hand index finger that proves I learned this lesson the hard way!
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