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Old November 27, 2018, 08:25 AM   #26
Runs With Fire
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I just picked up a used copy of The Shooters Bible: Guide to Handloading. I'll read it through this weekend. I'm not planning on shooting this weekend because my wife will likely have a baby any day, and I don't get cell reception at the range.
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Old November 27, 2018, 09:04 AM   #27
ed308
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My first press was a Dillon 650. Loved it then and still do today. Used it like a single stage press until I got comfortable going progressive. Next I bought several single stages presses (RCBS and Lee) which I returned. Then I tried Hornady single stage presses before settling on Hornady's Iron Press. Moral of this story, they are work. But some better than others. The one press I'd like to buy some day, a Dillon 550. I could see the Foster Coax getting work on my bench as well.
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Old November 27, 2018, 10:12 AM   #28
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Quality calipers and a quality scale are, IMHO, the only mandatory tools besides whatever press and dies you get. Go digital or analog, but make sure it is quality. The Frankford Arsenal digitals are highly rated, and I just won this one at a match and started using it: https://truweigh.com/products/reload...rmm-100-005-bk

Here is a good video that might be worthwhile for you to watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_o9eX8DqOII
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Old November 27, 2018, 10:50 AM   #29
joeanybody
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Like everybody has said your results may vary.....my main goto's are a lyman crusher II and a lee classic turret. I also have a lyman spar-t from 1975 I bought of ebay in a full kit, and a lee breech lock pro progressive that I got just to see what a $100 progressive press was like, and my first one was a lee challenger. I swapped out the lee challenger for the lyman crusher because the lee just didnt have enough oomph behind It to handle larger rifle.it was fine for pistol and .223 sized ammo, but larger cases like .308 win and 30-06 was a strain to size.however. Lee's biggest selling point to me is their primer removal tube. When depriming, the spent primer goes down a tube into a waste bucket, so it is my dedicated deprimer now off to the side. The crusher II is a big beefy press that does everything I want it to. From handling the larger rifle cartridges to swaging primer pockets.

All I can say is...welcome to reloading and have fun
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Old November 27, 2018, 11:39 AM   #30
reinert
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If you can find a vintage RCII (Rock Chucker) like the one that I bought new in 1980, then you'll have a fine press that will last you many, many years making lots and lots of ammo (IMO). That old single stage press of mine sure has proven itself to me. The new RCBS Rock Chucker presses are probably good, too. I have a brand new Rock Chucker Supreme that's still NIB. Just haven't had the need to try it out...yet.

BTW, the spent primer catcher that came with my old RCII press works well enough for me. I use a separate de-priming die almost exclusively for all my case work, and when I place a case to be de-primed in the holder, I just put the back of my hand as a shield in front of the catcher with my ring finger just touching the frame; literally none go on the floor that way. Just a habit I got into a long time ago, and works well for me.
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Old November 27, 2018, 12:06 PM   #31
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FWIW; I think about reloading presses much like I think about cars. You aren't gonna stick with one press the rest of your life (just like you will own many cars), you can add or subtract from your "stable" as you see fit. I've owned some perfectly good presses, but sold, traded or stored them to get another perfectly good press. Purchasing a press is not a lifelong commitment. If you want one of a different color, different features, you are free to get that one. So, if your first press doesn't fit your ideal, your methods, or jes 'cause you are tired of it, get another that you think you "need"...
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Old November 27, 2018, 12:45 PM   #32
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My rant for the day:

this has got to be the only sport in the world where anyone would claim any piece of equipment to be the best that requires a band aid to get it to perform one of it's basic functions properly. Can you imagine going into a store and buying a golf club and the salesman says great club been using one for 30 years, you just have to use a bit of electrical tape to hold the grip on, it's been that way for years but people still love the club.

Yes I am referring to the RCBS Rock Chucker. Been around since the 70's or maybe the 60's and for 50 years + since day 1 they spit three out of every five primers onto the bench or floor when depriming. Over the years users have came up with half a dozen methods from pieces of cardboard or foam behind the catcher, zip ties, soda straws inserted into the ram, magnets ( my cure of choice) and several 3D printed replacements available on EBay and Amazon.

I am not a RCBS hater by any means, I own a Rockchucker myself and it is built like a tank. I also own RCBS dies and their precision seater is by far my favorite seating die, 2 priming tools, their bullet puller etc.

I just want to know why RCBS has not fixed this themselves during the past 50 years? I have a Lee single stage and a Hornady progressive, neither of which puke primers on the floor so Why doesn't RCBS do a redesign on that primer catcher?

Ok rant off, I quit watching cable news so I have to be PO'ed about something and RCBS depriming won the toss
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Last edited by hounddawg; November 27, 2018 at 12:53 PM.
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Old November 27, 2018, 01:19 PM   #33
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I have lots of "green" in my reloading tool stash. I have used them since the mid 60s. I put up with what HD is ranting aboutin post 32. I started putting my finger on the slit in the ram to sort of deflect the primers so that they would land in the catcher.

When Franklin made their universal depriming tool available I got one and no longer use a press for depriming.

It is sort of like someone buying a Rem M700, then bastardizing it with a new trigger, barrel, stock, and so on. It ain't good enough on its own, so the new owner makes it good enough.

Here is a link to show what I am talking about.

https://www.amazon.com/Frankford-Ars...dp/B00RPABDZO/
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Old November 27, 2018, 01:30 PM   #34
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Runs With Fire, I am going to go back to my original statement, especially knowing now that the budget is very tight and a new baby is on the way.

Hit ebay! Single stage presses just do not wear out and all the posts here back that up. The idea is that you need to get started and started as inexpensively as possible. The idea again is to be able to learn the very basics, even if that is just one pistol caliber to start.

I am honestly and seriously telling you that everything you need can be found on ebay used. And usually for a substantial savings over new. Then as money becomes available you can always upgrade. But in the mean time you will be gaining and building experience. Nowhere is it written that you need to rush out and spend $1000.00 to get started.

When I first started I had a Bonanza single stage press, one set of RCBS 38/357 pistol dies, a RCBS 505 scale and Lee powder scoops. Boy did I have fun.
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Old November 27, 2018, 01:47 PM   #35
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Quote:
Lee powder scoops. Boy did I have fun.
I had and still have the three sets of scoops by lee; I have the yellow, black and red set. Scoops are like datums, not having the correct size just slowed me down.

Scoops: As R. Lee said; his scoops were scientifically designed.

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Old November 27, 2018, 04:25 PM   #36
mikld
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Maybe errant primers are not that big a deal. I had a press that dropped spent primers half on the floor half in the "catcher". I just placed a 5 gal. plastic bucket where the primers landed. Problem solved, no fretting, no strain, no sour stomach 'cause I had to pick up a few spent primers...
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Old November 27, 2018, 04:36 PM   #37
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Quote:
Runs With Fire asked:
What product, or brand should I steer clear of?
All of my presses are single stage and they are all from RCBS. RCBS has never let me down and they've always been there for me when I had a problem - even a problem of my own making - so I stick with them.

That said, I don't have a recommendation. RCBS, Lee, Lyman, Redding, Hornady, Dillon and all the other manufactures all seem able to produce a serviceable press that will give you many years of reliable service.

I've never owned Dillon since I don't DO progressives, but among the rest I have had great service from RCBS, and nearly as good service from Lee and Hornady. Redding has been slow to respond and I'm still waiting for Lyman to deliver a repair part they promised in 2016!

I have since replaced the missing Lyman part with one from Forster - another company with very good customer service and responsiveness. Even so, there are many people whose posts you can read on this site that have been satisfied with Lyman - I'm just not one of them.
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Old November 27, 2018, 05:50 PM   #38
hounddawg
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Quote:
Maybe errant primers are not that big a deal. I had a press that dropped spent primers half on the floor half in the "catcher". I just placed a 5 gal. plastic bucket where the primers landed. Problem solved, no fretting, no strain, no sour stomach 'cause I had to pick up a few spent primers...
maybe it is just a question of why in 50 years RCBS has failed to fix the problem, I have seen a half a dozen home made fixes used with varying amounts of success. Perhaps the engineers at RCBS should take note or include a 5 gallon RCBS green bucket with their presses with directions to place it under the press when depriming
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Old November 27, 2018, 06:05 PM   #39
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---I removed my shoes for inspection. The inspector asked about the little round metal circles imbedded in my rubber sole shoes: I explained to them they were knowbies for walking on ice and snow.
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Reading that today brought a chuckle. Thank you.
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Old November 27, 2018, 06:21 PM   #40
Average Joe
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Never had a problem with any press, and I've had them all..... Dies.....that's another matter......
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Old November 27, 2018, 06:31 PM   #41
Reloadron
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Runs With Fire:
Quote:
I'm not sure of my budget yet, as I'm not 100% sure of the manditory startup costs. My shooting is currently limited by my finances. I would like to hit the range each Saturday, but that's too costly right now.
Then a follow up with new baby on the way. I remember those days.

Right about this time maybe 10 years ago I got my brother a RCBS Rock Chucker Kit on sale as a Christmas gift. Now a starter kit has some advantages and some disadvantages. Most kits do not have everything you need to start loading but they do cover the basic bases. Generally things like a decent vernier or digital caliper are not included or a scale, a good Lee kit will likely include the Lee Safety Scale which is adequate or get a set of Lee dippers and learn how to use them. The point is to know what a starter kit of your choosing does or does not include. I went with a starter kit for my brother because I simply didn't want to screw around and piece part everything to get him started.

Just about any starter kit will get you going with a few additions. Again, just know what is in the box. I would not start with a $1,000 high end progressive press with whistles and bells as you simply do not need it and your budget will include powder, primers, bullets and of course before all else Pampers.

The RCBS 9354 is not bad and you are looking at about $325 on Amazon. Just as an example as all manufacturers have starter kits out there. Also, as I saw mentioned, Used is also a good way to go. People move into reloading and people move out frequently making for good deals on used stuff which will work a lifetime. Enjoy reloading and really enjoy the new addition.

Ron
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Old November 27, 2018, 06:38 PM   #42
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Best wishes for the new baby and mother!

Quote:
I'm not sure of my budget yet, as I'm not 100% sure of the manditory startup costs. My shooting is currently limited by my finances. I would like to hit the range each Saturday, but that's too costly right now.
Ok, you got a big event coming up and you won't get much sleep for a while (some luck out but.....)

So, if you proceed, then it puts you in the poor lane. Not that its bad, most of us likely started there. My first was an RCBS Junior (still have and use it for COAL)

It did not have the leverage I wanted for rifle cases latter on, I was shooting pistol exclusively at the time. But its not gone to waste either.

So if you have to start lower cost and work up, then a single stage press from one of the good mfgs and used would be more than fine. Even a bit rusty and clean up and you have a fine machine.

That does remove the Dillons and Co-Axe. Any US made O type that is similar to the Rockchucker.

Unlike Houndawg it just does not bother me on the Rockchucker to take a dustpan once in a while and clean up the ones that jump out.

Its not the only one, its what I have (and a spare if I get table space to mount)

RCBS was pretty much if not the only type available so never got into other presses.

So if someone has a different mfg and like it and you find one, get it.

The dies all fit (Horandy has an adapter for their cam lock setup but that is turret only I believe )

The other things to buy are a powder scale and decision on electronic vs beam as well as the others bits and pieces to have a setup.

The packages are worth looking at, they don't have the best stuff bu8t they do have the stuff you need to get started.

It will take a while to sort it out with what you can afford and what you need.

I took my basic setup when I started back in 5 years ago or so, have added to it with some of the newer items to where its working reasonably well for what I do (target shooting)
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Old November 27, 2018, 06:50 PM   #43
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I asked the same question a year ago. Folks pointed me to the rcbs rock chucker and it has been wonderful to use
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Old November 27, 2018, 06:54 PM   #44
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Houndawg i am with you. I have a jr3 that does the same thing. Helped me justify the co-ax purchase. All in how you look at it.
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Old November 27, 2018, 07:26 PM   #45
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Yep, mine is not a COAL adjuster at the range. Have to figure out if I will ever use the spare RC
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Old November 28, 2018, 02:41 PM   #46
mikld
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Just remembered. In 30+ years of reloading I have found only one worthless press, but it does have some value because I hung it on the wall in front of my reloading station to remind me never to purchase any Smart Reloader product. A few years ago I saw an ad for a Smart Reloader "C" press on sale. I bought one half out of plain curiosity, and half mebbe for a dedicated priming press. I got the press and it looked pretty crude, and the action real felt gritty, even after I disassembled and cleaned it, and it was difficult to F/L size a 38 Special case, poor/no leverage. The only thing good about the press is it had a halfway decent paint job and a nice wooden ball for the handle...
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Old November 28, 2018, 03:20 PM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reloadron View Post
Runs With Fire:


Then a follow up with new baby on the way. I remember those days......
-
-
The RCBS 9354 is not bad and you are looking at about $325 on Amazon......
Ron
Yep I remember too. That's when I bought an RCBS Rock Chucker starter kit....and still use nearly every piece of it 25 years later. Quality lasts. The kit Reloadron suggests above is even better. Totally agree and recommend. You will eventually want more and faster, but you won't find a better kit to start with.
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Old November 28, 2018, 03:21 PM   #48
F. Guffey
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Quote:
Just remembered. In 30+ years of reloading I have found only one worthless press,
There was a time, long before the Internet, a few manufacturers reviewed presses. I thought the reviews were fair and objective. That was before the RCBS Partner press. Included in the presses that were tested was a press that looked like a spider doing pushups when it was put through its paces. They said nothing good about the press and it seemed it bothered them their review was so negative.

Many years later I found one of the presses at the flea market in Napa, California. The kitchen appliance dealer selling the press was insisting the press was a juicer. I could not convince him it was a reloading press and-if it was a juicer it was upside down and missing too many parts. I purchased the press and then put it away to be dug out later in my life to be sold. Well it is later and digging it out is going to take time. The press was designed to skid on the two front legs while the back 2 legs were bolted to the table.

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Old November 28, 2018, 05:09 PM   #49
GeorgeandSugar
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What press should I not get?

I use Lee Classic Turret Press. No problems. Affordable. Happy with it. I’ve been reloading for 3 years now. Reloading 9mm, 223 and 300 ACC.


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Old November 28, 2018, 07:59 PM   #50
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If you pick wisely, the cost per round can be substantually lower than "factory" ammo.

However, don't think you'll save money, you end up shooting more.

Fair trade in my book.
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