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Old April 28, 2000, 11:13 PM   #1
Steve Smith
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I thought I was ready to start reloading with my Lee Pro 1000 (progressive), until I called Midway today with a question, and the tech said that I needed to use a single stage for a year 'till I'm good at it, then I can go to a progressive after that. He says that it's just way too dangerous. Now I'm really kinda depressed. Is this all true?

[This message has been edited by Frontsight! (edited April 29, 2000).]
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Old April 28, 2000, 11:39 PM   #2
Paul B.
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Frontsight. While I would have tp agree with the man from Midway, let me say this. If you are a person who takes great care in paying attention to detail, then I think you will be OK. Just go slow and don't try to set production records for a while.
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Old April 29, 2000, 12:11 PM   #3
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Let me gusss, the Midway guy wanted to sell you that single stage press, right? Seriously, there's nothing wrong with starting with a progressive, just take your time at first and pay attention to what's happening. I learned on a Dillon 550B, and didn't blow myself up. I'd do lots of reading before starting, try to learn from other folks mistakes. One thing I'd do is to get the press setup, then just "tinker" with it for an hour or so without trying to actually reload. Get familiar with the operation, seat and crimp a few bullets without powder or primers to get the feel of it. You'll know when you're ready to go. When I started, I spent several hours tinkering with it before I tried loading real ammo. You can, of course, use the progressive like a single stage if that makes it easier to start.

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Old April 29, 2000, 01:34 PM   #4
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Here's another question...

Can someone who has just started to drive do the Indy 500 and place well?

Remember the Ventures? "Walk, Don't Run"
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Old April 29, 2000, 02:22 PM   #5
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Frontsight!, if you know someone who is reloading, see if they might help you get started. Read every manual you can get your paws on.
Good luck, anyway you go.
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Old April 29, 2000, 04:34 PM   #6
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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by SKR:
Here's another question...
Can someone who has just started to drive do the Indy 500 and place well?
Remember the Ventures? "Walk, Don't Run"


It would have been useful if you had something pro or con to say about the original question...

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Old April 29, 2000, 07:09 PM   #7
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I loaded on a single stage for over 20yrs before I bought a progressive (Dillon 650). I would have never bought it if it didn't have the powder check station. I think a squib is more dangerous than an overcharge in most situations.
Just make sure the correct powder charge is in the case before you seat a bullet and you should be all right. ( same as any loader)
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Old April 29, 2000, 07:36 PM   #8
Fred S
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I started on a Dillon 550. There's nothing wrong with starting ona progressive. The Dillon folks told me over the phone to start with pistol ammo and do it for awhile learning the press. Take your time and watch everything you do and you'll do fine.

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Old April 29, 2000, 08:19 PM   #9
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If you have not purchased the Lee 1000...

To keep you out of trouble, I still screw up, even after 31 years of reloading buy a LEE TERRIT Kit. You do not need the AUTO-INDEXING until you are very familiar with what you are doing and why you are doing it.

The Lee Terit press uses one shell holder and has 3 slots for dies/powder measure.
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Old April 29, 2000, 09:49 PM   #10
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If you start with a Dillon 550, which doesn't index itself, you can load one round all the way through, and build up your speed as you learn. Just be careful and be sure that you have powder in each case prior to seating the bullet. Reloading isn't rocket science. It's really pretty simple. If you have average mechanical ability and intellectually grasp the basics of reloading, you'll do fine.

On the other hand, I prefer my Rockchucker for rifle reloading. Sure wouldn't want to load pistol ammo in a single stage, though. I'm using a crappy Lee Loadmaster, on which I have disabled the auto shellfeed. I just slide the shells into the shellplate, using the shellfeed tubes and slide mechanism. I can load a lot of quality ammo a lot faster than I can with my Rockchucker.
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Old April 29, 2000, 10:21 PM   #11
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With the Lee pro 1000 you can load one case at a time until you get comfortable with it.I loaded over 100,000 rounds on one until I moved up to a Dillon 650.With a little care and don't force anything the PRO 1000 will serve you well.Hope this helps BILLG
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Old April 30, 2000, 12:56 AM   #12
Steve Smith
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Thanks for all the responses. to answer a couple of Q's, Yes, I already own the press. If the thing breaks as much as you guys say, I'm thinking about a Dillon Square Deal B later on...but anyway. I am having a friend come over that has about 20,000 rounds through his Pro 1000 to help me get started (several hours of training). We've both been trained as instructors (not on reloading, but general formal instructing) and I'm sure that he will present the instruction in a classroom type way Vs. "stick it in, pull that" type of mahem. Yes, I do plan on doing one cartridge at a time for quite a while. PS, if any of you live on the Colorado Front Range, I just saved $27 on lead LSWCs and LRNs at Shootin' Den Vs. Midway! $60 for 1000 Vs. almost $90! Well, I've really asked a lot of people about this since my talk with Midway, and I haven't heard another screaming "You're gonna die!" message. I think that I'll press on (sorry for the pun) safely.
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Old April 30, 2000, 01:00 AM   #13
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Be careful and you can start on a Dillon 550. You can start off slow on it. Fast on a Lyman turret press or a Rockchucker is 125 rounds and hour. Slow on a Dillon 550 is 200 rounds an hour.

Do the math. What is your time worth? Wish I would have spent the extra money on the Dillon on my first press.

Ask yourself - how many used Dillon presses do you ever see? Lots of Rockchuckers, Lymans T-Mags, and Lee progressives on eBay. That should be a clue to you.

People buy Dillon and keep them. Nuff said!

The Seattle SharpShooter
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Old April 30, 2000, 01:32 AM   #14
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Why not set it up as a single state until you are confident with using it as progressive? Just a thought...
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Old April 30, 2000, 05:49 PM   #15
Walt Welch
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I had two single stage presses over 20 years or so, until I bought my first progressive, a MEC 650 shotshell press. Learning the progressive was a somewhat traumatic experience, with more loads of shot dropped on the hardware floor than I care to remember.

Compared with the MEC, however, the Dillon SDB is a piece of cake. I wouldn't even think of starting out a new reloader on a single stage press, unless he is a real obsessive-compulsive person assembling match ammo with each charge weighed.

The only thing a single stage press gives you is the knowledge of how each station works, and the adjustements to dies, powder measure, etc. necessary at each station. A progressive can give you the same experience, and an easy to use one like the SDB, or the 550 (which is only a trifle more difficult, since you need to remember to rotate the cartridge cases each time), can successfully be used as a first press.

Further, the Dillon SDB comes already adjusted; just use the same bullet, set the powder measure, load up primers and powder, and you are reloading.

If you insist on a single stage press, I suggest using someone elses. This will give you experience without money tied up in equipment you will shortly stop using.

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Old May 2, 2000, 01:53 PM   #16
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Frontsight: I live in the north Denver area, and have just got into reloading as well. I was wondering where you were at & what range you go to. Maybe we could get together for a chat & compare notes. Feel free to e-mail me offline. Hammer
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Old May 3, 2000, 05:40 PM   #17
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I started reloading on a Dillon Square Deal B and as stated above had no problem learning each step and understanding what was happening at each stage.
I heard the same advice,when I started to look at progressive presses. I was told start with a single stage.Untill you learn.
Luckly I found a new SDB for $185.95 and bought it.
The SDB can be used as a single stage press
That is How I started by reloading One bulet at a time.
But I sure am glad that I got the SDB.
I would hate to think that now That I have learned my way around the press,I would have to buy a progressive press.
I was able to buy another Gun with the money I saved.

also for gun accessorys.
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Old May 3, 2000, 07:44 PM   #18
Bill Daniel
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If the Lee does not work out I can't praise my Dillon SDB loud enough. Though,I reloaded shotgun shells for years on a auto-indexing press before I began pistol reloading I also began on a auto-indexing press (Dillon SDB). As has been stated if your goal is quality ammunition and not speed alone you will do fine. Speer # 13 is a great reloading manuel as is ABC's of Reloadng.
All the best!
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Old May 3, 2000, 10:58 PM   #19
Ruben Nasser
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I started with a Dillon 550, and never had a problem. I thind it was easy for me because this press is fairly easy to use and I had a very good heoretical understanding of reloading before starting. The important thing if you are about to start reloading (with any press) is: you MUST understand perfectly every step of the operation and be very careful to take your time (it varies with every individual) to get every step/stage as close as perfect as you can honestly get. With time you'll get faster and get to know a few new tricks, but you must master the basics in the begining. Get a good manual (Lyman's is my favorite) and read it thoroughly until you understand every step. If you do that and follow the press manufacturer's instructions, with a little patience you can start with a progressive.
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Old May 10, 2000, 05:55 PM   #20
El Rojo
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We are beating this to death, but I too started on a Dillon 550B [dada dum ]. I haven't made any life threatening mistakes and I am getting pretty darn good at it now. I also had my dad to check in with since it is at his house and I ran by all of my reloading tales with him and he advised me. Other than that, I have been doing pretty good with it. Like everyone says, you just have to pay attention to what you are doing. Get in a good habit of doing all of the steps in a specific order and stay with that order. For me, I will not leave the bench unless I pull down the handle, rotate the shell plate and then put a new bullet into the cartridge waiting to be seated. When I come back, I know I just need to start from the begining again. Just things like that will keep you from double charging (if it is possible, depends on the load you are doing) and blowing yourself up. Good luck.
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