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Old January 13, 2013, 06:31 PM   #1
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Where to start for a greenhorn...

I am a complete novice when it comes to reloading. I've wanted to get into it, now I have a house with a room I can dedicate to my firearms.

Have gotten pretty lost when looking online trying to even find out what start up costs would be.
I would be wanting to reload for .357 and .308 (been collecting my brass for a few months), had not considered .223 until this lunacy happened but believe that will die down.

From what I've looked into, I'm fairly certain I would want a progressive press but if its a large price difference then I could be talked down to a single stage press. I'd take my time either way, don't need to lose a finger or worse.

My preferred budget would be $500, am i kidding myself w/ this price.

Really would like a list of everything I would need, from press down to that tin tray that flips the primers right side up.

As for why I am wanting to reload, the cost savings is attractive, but find it interesting and a craft I would like to learn.

Thanks for any input.
M&P- the other dark meat

Last edited by RamItOne; January 13, 2013 at 06:37 PM.
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Old January 13, 2013, 06:46 PM   #2
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Im rowing the same boat you are as far as being new to reloading. You can get a single stage rcbs with the kit. Then all i needed to buy was a digital caliper, brass, bullets, powder and primers. (Good luck finding primers). Also good manuals to cross reference. I got speer, lyman and hornady. Midway usa has presses and kits for all budgets. I think i threw a $600 dollar bill for EVERYTHING with shipping. Good luck brother. The veterans will jump in and help you out.
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Old January 13, 2013, 07:23 PM   #3
Misssissippi Dave
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I suggest starting with this thread.
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Old January 13, 2013, 07:28 PM   #4
chris in va
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Oh good grief.

My entire reloading setup cost about $240. No need to get some expensive equipment to load three calibers.

Lee die set
ANALOG calipers
Used beam scale
Hand Press kit (includes ram prime)
Lyman manual
Lee perfect powder measure
Chamfer and trim bits
Food storage tubs
Various trays

Last edited by chris in va; January 13, 2013 at 07:35 PM.
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Old January 13, 2013, 08:16 PM   #5
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Well I would suggest a Lee Classic Turret kit. (Though I can not find one in stock anywhere online, or localy.)

A Lee 50th aniversary kit. Will run under $120 upgrade to a better scale. ($25 to a few hundred dpending on how precise you want.)
A dial Caliper about $30
Lock stud, and case length guage to trim the .308 brass $6 or less
Reloading manual $15 to $30 depending on where you get it, and which one.
No matter how many times you do it and nothing happens it only takes something going wrong one time to kill you.
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Old January 14, 2013, 12:27 AM   #6
Lost Sheep
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Thanks for asking our advice.

Thanks for asking our advice.

For your bottlenecked cartridges I would suggest a good single stage. It will also do for your straight-walled pistol cases while you are learning.

A progressive will set you back a pretty penny, but learning to load on a progressive is more difficult than learning on a turret or a single stage. Just as learning to walk wearing shoes is easier to learn than learning to walk wearing roller skates. Also, you may find the quantities you shoot do not justify the expense and complexity of a progressive. Both of those attributes will become clearer to you as you gain experience on your single stage.

I have never heard anyone regret owning a single stage.

Once you have the basics as second nature on a single stage, you can decide later if you want a nice auto-indexing turret, a regular turret of a progressive. Don't be impatient.

In the meantime, here are excerpts from an article I wrote a while ago

You need knowledge. About the process, about the toos and about load recipes that are safe. A mentor would be nice.

Manuals and instruction books. Lots of manuals. And web sites. Reliable ones, like the bullet manufacturers and powder manufacturers, not someone who doesn't have "skin in the game".

The early chapters of manuals are devoted to "how to load" information and the rest are load recipes. The bullet and powder manufacturers have lots of good advice and load recipes specific for their products. The excellent tome "ABC's of Reloading" has no load recipes, but excellent descriptions of the loading process, written by a selection of different authors.

Casual sources (like forums) are good sources of education and information, but you have to verify everything you find from casual sources.

Remember, only believe half of what you see and one quarter of what you hear. That goes double for what you get from the internet. Even this post. Maybe especially this post.

Do your own independent, confirming research when ANYONE gives you new facts on the web.

Also remember, even the idiotic stuff might have a kernel of truth buried in there somewhere.

I have compiled a few web sites that seem to have some good information (some of which came from me).

Go get a large mug of whatever you sip when you read and think and visit these sites.

For the New Reloader: Thinking about Reloading; Equipment Basics -- READ THIS FIRST

I am looking at getting into reloading for the first time

Just bought my first press. Needs some info tho.

Considering reloading

Budget Beginning Bench you will never outgrow, for the novice handloader.

Thoughts on The Lee Classic Turret Press

Interested in reloading

Newby needs help.

I hope you enjoy the reading. Thanks for asking our advice.

Lost Sheep


I do not know you, so if my advice seems over-obvious, take into account my ignorance of your experience level. Also, other readers of all experience levels are reading.

Last edited by Lost Sheep; January 14, 2013 at 12:47 AM.
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Old January 14, 2013, 05:44 AM   #7
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Step one should be to get a manual or 3 & start reading.
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Old January 14, 2013, 05:54 AM   #8
the led farmer
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Lee classic turret and never ever look back
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Old January 21, 2013, 05:28 PM   #9
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I appreciate all the feedback, lots of good info

Lost Sheep
Those links certainly took some time to read through. Thanks

I still think I'd prefer a progressive, I'm certainly mechanically inclined and feel confident in the process. I've watched videos of single stage and turrets and it just seems like there's more time needed than I have to invest.

Thanks again to all
M&P- the other dark meat
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Old January 21, 2013, 05:42 PM   #10
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Ram it one. The most vital things you have to invest for SAFE reloading are Time, and ATTENTION.

Note I used caps to show the importance of things.

Please do not take this as an insult. I offer this suggestion in thinking of yours, and other's safety.

If you are that short on time forget dropping that much money. It would be a poor investment for you. You are already short enough on time. Buy some bulk comercial reloads. They are economical, and all you have to do is order them, and wait for them to come on the brown truck.

I say this as a person that started to reload, and cast lead to have the chane to shoot a lot more with the very limited funds that I have. I had time, and attention to invest, and very little money. I started with, and still use a single stage. I batch load. I spend roughly 10 to 12 hours reloading or casting each week. This weekend between me, my wife, and a couple of friends 800 rounds of my reloads were shot. Total cost was under $75 in money, and 7 hours of actual work that I enjoy doing. If I were not doing it I would be in a Lazy Boy watching TV and drinking something cold. (Most likely with a giant bag of Cheetos in my hand as well.)
No matter how many times you do it and nothing happens it only takes something going wrong one time to kill you.
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die , press , reload

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