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Old November 25, 2009, 06:00 AM   #1
micksis86
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RCBS Rock Chucker Press

I'm looking at one of these to replace my Lee turret press which i'm fed up with.
Just wondering does the RCBS Rock Chucker press have a primer catcher?
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Old November 25, 2009, 07:41 AM   #2
sne7777
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Mine does, it's a molded plastic piece that conects with a plastic snap in strap. The press is an older model with the primer arm that swings in to seat the primer, I noticed that with the newer one's you need a hand primer.
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Old November 25, 2009, 07:59 AM   #3
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What's wrong with your turret press?

What's wrong with your turret press? My turret press is working flawlessly and keeps me at the range. There's a lot of knowledge here if your having difficulties with your press. PM me if you decide to sell it. Citywaterman
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Old November 25, 2009, 08:24 AM   #4
AcridSaint
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Mine does not have one, but I see that you can buy one separately for little money.

My press is from the 70's and I have a Lee auto prime for priming. I'm new and my equipment came from a friend. sne7777, can you show us the priming arm? I wonder if it is also an option or if it's something I need to dig out of a box.
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Old November 25, 2009, 08:38 AM   #5
champ198
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i just got my RC and its got one...works ok not as good as some but serves the pourpose really like the press thats for sure
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Old November 25, 2009, 09:27 AM   #6
David Wile
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Hey Mick,

I don't know about the new RCBS stuff that is supposed to be made in China, but any RCBS RockChucker made here in the USA (maybe five or more years ago?) will be a rock solid single stage press that will last many lifetimes. The RockChucker has been around since maybe the early 1960s, and I am still using mine.

Its primer catcher was originally cast aluminum held in place with a rubber band, and sometime later the cast aluminum catcher was replaced with a less expensive plastic unit held in place with a snap in strap like Sne7777 mentioned. You should buy a new primer catcher for the press, but be aware that even with a new primer catcher, lots of primers will fall on the floor after hitting the catcher and bouncing out. That is just the nature of the lousy primer catcher designs of the day. Don't reject the RockChucker because of the bad primer catcher feature; the catcher will catch most of the primers but not anywhere near as good as today's modern presses that have tubes that lead to a collection canister.

When I got my RockChucker, it had the primer seating arm (with parts for both small and large primers) and a primer feeder mechanism that used a block with a tube of primers inserted in it, and when you had it adjusted just right and pulled the primer arm back to the block, a new primer would fall into the priming arm for insertion into the case. If your RockChucker does not have the primer arm or the primer feeder mechanism, don't worry about it. Compared to the hand held primer feeders, the old press mounted priming systems are just plain out of date and not worth the effort. I have an RCBS hand primer and a Lee Auto Primer hand unit with a set of shell holders that are made for it. As might be expected, the RCBS unit is built like a tank compared to the cheap little Lee Auto Prime unit. I don't like much of anything Lee makes, but their Auto Prime hand primer is just great to me. It changes back and forth from small to large primers very easily (not so with the RCBS unit), and it changes shell holders in a snap. It is much easier to prime cases with the hand primer than it is to use the old press primer mechanisms. So you really do not need any priming parts on the RockChucker if it does not have them.

I don't know what a good price would be for the RockChucker, but if the press was decently taken care of, it will last many lifetimes, and it will still be useful even if you later decide you need a progressive press. There are always jobs to do on a single stage press even if you have a progressive press, and the RockChucker is a large well built press. It is virtually an icon of the reloading community.

Best wishes,
Dave Wile
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Old November 25, 2009, 09:41 AM   #7
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I bought a RC about a year ago. Really easy for me to learn on.
It came with a plastic snap in primer catch. I can not post pictures, but it snaps on the press and the primers are supposed to fall through the ram arm and out a slot and into the catch tray. It usually works very well, but the occasional spent primer will sometimes fall out and onto the press itself.
The only problem I have is taking the tray off the press. Sometimes the tray is so full of spent primers, they will spill.
My RC kit came with a hand priming tool and tray to hold new primers. I like this set-up because I can take it into the living room and prime my brass while the wife babbles... Uh, I mean talks. The only thing you have to really worry about is making sure you use the right end of the priming rod to seat the primers.
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Old November 25, 2009, 10:04 AM   #8
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I have two RC2's. Absolutly love it. I use the on press priming system instead of a hand primer and dont have any problem with primers on the floor. If I take off the priming arm, then I get primers every where but as long as its in places I only get 1/400 on the floor. RC Supreme has different system altogether I dont like that press at all. Go to E-bay, try to find an RC or RC2
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Old November 25, 2009, 10:15 AM   #9
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The RC does have a primer catch, but it's a try rather than the more modern "through the ram" and down a tube type of catch. The newer style through the ram tends to catch a higher percentage of primers and also keeps more filth off the press and down the tube to be collected. YMMV, but this seems to be mostly agreed upon.

If I had a Lee turret that wasn't making me happy for whatever reason (you didn't say) then I would replace it with either a Lee Classic turret or a Lee Classic cast. Either of these presses are much better than a Lee standard turret press (by far, IMO) and I also believe either of these presses offer more bag for the buck than the RCBS Rock Chucker.

To be sure, the Rock Chucker is a fine, very sturdy press that will give a lifetime of service. But the Lee Classic cast does more for less money, IMO.
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Old November 25, 2009, 10:36 AM   #10
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Check out the Lee Classic Cast iron single stage press, very solid and highly rated by experienced reloaders, made in the USA, cheaper and probably stronger than the RC, and the primers exit THROUGH the hollow ram and a plastic tube into a waste bin.
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Old November 25, 2009, 11:20 AM   #11
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Strong ditto for Islander's observations, both RC and Classic Cast (all steel body and links).

If I had to replace my RC today it would be with a CC, for sure. It's bigger, much stronger, more/better user features, the spent primer system works. It's made in the USA and it costs MUCH less than the current (Chinese) cast iron RC; what's not to love?

I really hate the way my old RC II scatters spent caps around so I gave up and bought a tiny Lee "Reloader" press and Universal Decapper die. THAT worked great. So, I got another one, mounted it 10 inches to the right of the first and put a Lee Auto Prime II on it. Love 'em as a primer handling system and the total cost wan't very much!

And I've also used Lee's hand-held Auto Prime tools for maybe twenty years. They aren't perfect but they are very GOOD. Used intelligently, they last a LOONG time without breakage.
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Old November 25, 2009, 11:57 AM   #12
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I love my rockchucker but I feel that the primer catch system is pretty lousy. Others don't mind it, but I get primers all over the place. They really should design something better.
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Old November 25, 2009, 01:36 PM   #13
kle
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I have an RC2, and I feel that it's primer-catch thingy is adequate; it catches about 95%. Some primers still make it onto the floor, but the broom gets them anyways.
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Old November 25, 2009, 01:48 PM   #14
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I got a Rock Chucker IV it does have a primer catcher and a primer. One guy said it spills primers cause it fits loose i fixed that problem with a piece of paper folded a couple time so it fits tight against the ram. I love the press its solid. Took some pics for you

Last edited by rottieman33; March 3, 2011 at 04:53 PM.
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Old November 27, 2009, 08:16 AM   #15
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I've had mine for more than 30 years and a few thousands rounds. To stop the spent primers from going onto the floor I took a straw that I got from McDonald's, cut it to about 3" long and inserted it into the groove where the primer arm would go. To do this make sure that it's a large diameter straw. I also use the Lee Auto pimer for re-priming my cases. As to it getting too full and spilling spent primers out when you empty it, I just hold a trashcan under it and then any that spill out is caught in that. No fuss no muss.
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Old November 27, 2009, 08:36 AM   #16
mjm
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I lost my primer catcher sometime during several moves and 25 years of storage. I called RCBS to buy one and they sent it to me free. It catches about 98% of the spent primers.
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Old November 27, 2009, 08:59 AM   #17
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I love some of the comments made about presses. The one about more modern style, primers dropping through the ram, you've never used a A2 press the forerunner of most presses made today. The primers drop through the ram and fall into a container below. There is nothing new out there just variations of older designs.
By the way you can't go wrong with the Rock Chucker.

If you spend the money now for quality, you won't spend it later after you by cheap:barf:!
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Old November 27, 2009, 10:26 AM   #18
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I have this awful feeling that I'm the only one that actually likes the priming system on the RC. I can certainly understand the benefit of using a hand primer for feel, but the RC's setup has been a great alternative for my wife while I'm on the progressive.
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Old November 27, 2009, 10:48 PM   #19
BigJakeJ1s
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Jaguar, that makes two things I'll never understand why RCBS moved away from: hollow ram spent primer handling, and cross-bolt die lock rings!

Andy
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Old November 27, 2009, 11:14 PM   #20
reloader28
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I'm with you Tuttle8. I like priming on the press better. Had a hand system and I just didnt like the feel of it.
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Old November 28, 2009, 04:11 PM   #21
warnerwh
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The primer catcher works which I appreciate after using a green press that threw primers and grunge all over the place.
You can mount the Lee Safety primer on it also. This will help as far as speed goes. Use the Lee Pro Auto Disk too and you'll save more time. The best part is the Lee is less money and as good as any of them. I would have spent more had I not read so much good on this press.
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Old November 28, 2009, 06:47 PM   #22
David Wile
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Hey Tuttle and Reloader,

I thought I was old because of my fondness and devotion to my really old green single stage machines, but if you guys still prefer to prime your cases on those old green single stage machines, you all must be a lot older than I.

I never had much use for Lee products, but when I started using the Lee hand held Auto Prime 20 some years ago, I quit priming with the press. If I happen to be loading a batch on the LNL AP, however, I do everything on it with one complete stroke of the handle. Even so, I still have and use three of the green single stage machines, and I use them often for special jobs.

I'm glad to hear some folks still prime on the old machines. It makes me feel a bit younger.

Best wishes to you both,
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Old November 28, 2009, 06:58 PM   #23
Shane Tuttle
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Quote:
I thought I was old because of my fondness and devotion to my really old green single stage machines, but if you guys still prefer to prime your cases on those old green single stage machines, you all must be a lot older than I.
He, hee. Would it make you feel better if I told you I wasn't that old but appreciate the old school ways in life?

If we're talking about the same Lee Auto Prime, I think it's OK. However, my thumb becomes quite fatigued when using it. I can last longer using the RCBS hand-held. Both of them collect dust since I either use the Hornady's or the primer setup on the Rockchucker as stated.

Forgot to mention the depriming on the Rockchucker isn't too bad. I'm guessing maybe 1/100 misses the plastic catcher thingy. I can tolerate that. What irks me is it's a pain in the behind to pull off and dump out without several going everywhere. Admittingly, I didn't know how lousy I had it until I bought my Lock 'N' Load AP. That there's heaven!
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Old November 28, 2009, 09:33 PM   #24
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"Admittingly, I didn't know how lousy I had it until I bought my Lock 'N' Load AP."

A truthful and VERY telling comment! MANY of those who swear by their RC presses as the greatest things since interchangable shell holders soften their tone quite a bit after trying something else!
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Old November 28, 2009, 10:11 PM   #25
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I'm the ripe old age of 38.
To much work typing this. Got to find my walker and take a nap before bedtime.
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