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Old July 30, 2016, 09:22 PM   #1
nhyrum
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My reloading bench!

So I'm building this reloading bench and figured I'd share my progress! This was built using all free wood(mainly pallets, but 4x4 fence posts for the legs)

This is based off plans I found on the web, they look pretty old. I plan on adding some 2x4 across the top of the table, before I put the top on. It also has a top cabinet that is a little more ornate than I care for, so it will be simplified



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Old July 31, 2016, 05:57 AM   #2
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Looks like a good start! Keep us posted
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Old July 31, 2016, 07:41 AM   #3
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I envy those who have the talent to complete projects like this. Me personally, all thumbs!
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Old July 31, 2016, 07:50 AM   #4
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cross bracing will make more stable IMO
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Old July 31, 2016, 08:11 AM   #5
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that bench is resembling mine. Back about 1979 the reloading magazines had plans in the back pages that you could send for. 3/4" top surface, sides and back gave it stability and you won't loose things stored on the lower shelf with some thing to stop them from sliding off. A few boards could help that. The cabinet that goes on top is supersizing simple. Although the cost of the 3/4" ply wood can be costly. You could use that pressed board with a sheet of 1/4" hard board to give you a workable surface. I like the idea of recycling wood. It's a good design but understand that it can be very heavy and bulky. Don't get painted into a corner.
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Old July 31, 2016, 11:08 AM   #6
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My old one that now is doing duty as a work bench in the garage is very similar.
But the legs might need more attachment from the sides to prevent them from trying to rotate about the single bolt and causing a wobble.
Mine did.
Holes in wood have a tendency to get bigger over time.
And wood compresses making for looseness.
The very best benches are made of welded steel, for that reason.
Not exactly accomplished by most of us without welding equipment and skills, though.
With a little re-enforcement yours should last a very long time, though.
Mine certainly has.
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Old July 31, 2016, 11:28 AM   #7
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Nice!
Looks really similar to mine. I built mine using wood I scrounged from work. I think I ended up buying from a store two 2X4s and a box of screws , the rest was free. Amazing what can be build on a shoe string budget.
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Old July 31, 2016, 11:33 AM   #8
nhyrum
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Longshot4 View Post
that bench is resembling mine. Back about 1979 the reloading magazines had plans in the back pages that you could send for. 3/4" top surface, sides and back gave it stability and you won't loose things stored on the lower shelf with some thing to stop them from sliding off. A few boards could help that. The cabinet that goes on top is supersizing simple. Although the cost of the 3/4" ply wood can be costly. You could use that pressed board with a sheet of 1/4" hard board to give you a workable surface. I like the idea of recycling wood. It's a good design but understand that it can be very heavy and bulky. Don't get painted into a corner.
It wouldn't surprise me if it's the same bench. I have a pdf scan and the original document looks about that vintage.

I just don't like these sliding track doors. It's nice that to open them they won't get in the way of the work area, but it just seems too complicated.

And I hear ya on the bench pivoting on one Bolt hole. The plans call for 2 in each leg on top. I just got 4 last trip cause the 6" Stainless lag bolts I use are like 2.50 a pop. I'm definitely gonna add a cross brace on the ends to square things up. I'm tempted to lay a bed of 2x4 to go under the top just to make it extra sturdy... Things gonna be a b getting inside

I'll keep ya posted. We're wrapping up a move so I don't have a ton of time on my hands now.

I'm also using a chain saw to cut the wood. I've surprised myself how straight I can get cuts, following lines. I guess that summer I spent using one almost every day paid off

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Last edited by nhyrum; July 31, 2016 at 11:58 AM.
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Old July 31, 2016, 04:11 PM   #9
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If you could scrounge a solid wood door for your top, would be much better than 2x4's. Additionally, attach 2x4, one on each side, such that they fit between the legs. That will bring more stability to the table. For your bottom shelf, a single sheet of plywood cut to fit around the legs will also help to solidify the bench.

I created the same table with plans off the net 4+ years ago, used 4x4 for the legs. The table is very stable. I would seriously consider not adding shelves on the back. Why? Loss of work space. Perhaps it's just perception but I find the table size to be more than adequate to hold my press, a detachable powder measure and all the other parts and pieces while will I work. Having the shelving sitting at the back takes away space and feels a bit claustrophobic.

Nice work. Good luck.
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Old July 31, 2016, 04:45 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkGlazer View Post
If you could scrounge a solid wood door for your top, would be much better than 2x4's. Additionally, attach 2x4, one on each side, such that they fit between the legs. That will bring more stability to the table. For your bottom shelf, a single sheet of plywood cut to fit around the legs will also help to solidify the bench.

I created the same table with plans off the net 4+ years ago, used 4x4 for the legs. The table is very stable. I would seriously consider not adding shelves on the back. Why? Loss of work space. Perhaps it's just perception but I find the table size to be more than adequate to hold my press, a detachable powder measure and all the other parts and pieces while will I work. Having the shelving sitting at the back takes away space and feels a bit claustrophobic.

Nice work. Good luck.
Yeah, I'm working on the bottom plywood, and the 2x4's would just be a base to put plywood or something similar to.

And I do plan on the 2x4's between the legs

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Old August 6, 2016, 08:27 PM   #11
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Day number 2 on the bench! Got some real woodworking tools this time...

Got a 2x4 going diagonally to square up the legs, 2x4's on 16 inch centers(same as for joists) under the top, which will be covered by 3/4ply. Going to finish the bottom shelf, sand then move her indoors for the rest!

I'm tempted to slather the top in wood filler and sand it down, but since it's going to be covered, doesn't seem worth the work
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Old August 6, 2016, 08:51 PM   #12
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It's starting to look solid.
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Old August 7, 2016, 11:07 AM   #13
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Lookin' good, very good.
Nice.
Forgot to mention that I added a wide, shallow drawer just under the top on mine.
It's proven very handy.
Also, to keep little stuff like primers from falling in the cracks, I added a smooth top of left over cabinet doors from our kitchen remodel.
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Old August 7, 2016, 11:19 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by g.willikers View Post
Lookin' good, very good.
Nice.
Forgot to mention that I added a wide, shallow drawer just under the top on mine.
It's proven very handy.
Also, to keep little stuff like primers from falling in the cracks, I added a smooth top of left over cabinet doors from our kitchen remodel.
I wish I could figure out how to build a drawer... That would be nice...

It will have a flat top. Gonna glue and screw a sheet of 3/4 ply

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Old August 7, 2016, 01:34 PM   #15
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Just make a box of suitable size and use 1x2s for the support and runners.
Easy, peasy.
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Old August 7, 2016, 03:22 PM   #16
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I paid $20 for the Lee Valley modern woodworking bench plans in 1983.
7'x2' with 1.5" thick top.
I found a dozen errors in the instructions. The same plans are only $15 now.
http://www.leevalley.com/us/wood/pag...46&cat=1,41637
In 1983 I only paid $2.50/board foot for rock hard Maple and laminated my own bench top.
At the time pre laminated maple bench top or chopping block was $5/board foot.
Back then Walnut was the only extra cost hardwood at $5/board foot in raw lumber.

Now rock hard Maple is $10/ board foot and Walnut is $20.
Laminated bench top is now $15/board foot
http://www.woodcraft.com/Product/145...-BENCHTOP.aspx

Guns, guitars, and Gold may have appreciated 3% compounded annually, but wood is closer to 4% over the last 33 years.

What things have I learned about reloading benches?
1) The Rockchucker press full length sizing 308 brass with a sizer ball and not enough lube will put a moment arm of 300 foot pounds on the bench.
http://www.aaronswansonpt.com/basic-...nt-arm-torque/)
There are two ways to tip over a free standing bench, and it is harder the long way. Put the Rockchucker on the end of a freestanding bench with reaction to lift the bench lengthwise.
3) Don't use a Rockchucker press, Don't use an expander ball. Do not size without enough lube. Do not use a free standing bench.
4) The way to attach a bench to the wall is to attach a 2x4 to the wall with a number of 3" screws and hit multiple studs.
5) Do not put benches on wheels that see a lot of force from your body pushing.
6) Benches should be triangulated so there is no parallel o gram joint twisting. plywood on the side makes a triangle structure as well as a strut.
7) Reloading needs fast feedback loops. Don't make a long distance trip to the range just to find the threshold of loose primer pockets in a work up. Shoot next to the vehicle and reload in the vehicle.
8) Reloading is boring. Put the reloading presses on a board clamped to the desk so you can watch youtube while reloading.
9) Revise the reloading press board to fit different desks, tables, benches, and vehicles.

I got a camper 3 days ago, Antelope season starts in 2 months, and I need to design the reloading bench that fits in the camper.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg camper 8-4-2016.jpg (117.3 KB, 99 views)
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Old August 7, 2016, 03:51 PM   #17
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You're load bench is bearing a striking resemblance to mine. I built mine (my cousin did most of it actually) back in '84, and it's suited me well ever since.

This pic is a couple years old. I have since mounted a Dillon 550 about where the hopper is. The hopper was moved down about a foot.

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Old August 7, 2016, 03:55 PM   #18
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Clark That 150 looks loaded down a bit. I hope it isn't empty.
I do like the pop top but how do you stay cozy? Do they insulate the skirt well? What make is it?

sorry for getting off of the bench subject.

For the bench use light weight materials of course. Maby 1/4 Hard board with a Cedar frame.

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Old August 7, 2016, 04:47 PM   #19
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I just got the 2,000 pound camper 3 days ago. The installers said get air shocks or something. I am on crutches for 6 more days.
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Old August 7, 2016, 05:22 PM   #20
nhyrum
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clark View Post
I paid $20 for the Lee Valley modern woodworking bench plans in 1983.
7'x2' with 1.5" thick top.
I found a dozen errors in the instructions. The same plans are only $15 now.
http://www.leevalley.com/us/wood/pag...46&cat=1,41637
In 1983 I only paid $2.50/board foot for rock hard Maple and laminated my own bench top.
At the time pre laminated maple bench top or chopping block was $5/board foot.
Back then Walnut was the only extra cost hardwood at $5/board foot in raw lumber.

Now rock hard Maple is $10/ board foot and Walnut is $20.
Laminated bench top is now $15/board foot
http://www.woodcraft.com/Product/145...-BENCHTOP.aspx

Guns, guitars, and Gold may have appreciated 3% compounded annually, but wood is closer to 4% over the last 33 years.

What things have I learned about reloading benches?
1) The Rockchucker press full length sizing 308 brass with a sizer ball and not enough lube will put a moment arm of 300 foot pounds on the bench.
http://www.aaronswansonpt.com/basic-...nt-arm-torque/)
There are two ways to tip over a free standing bench, and it is harder the long way. Put the Rockchucker on the end of a freestanding bench with reaction to lift the bench lengthwise.
3) Don't use a Rockchucker press, Don't use an expander ball. Do not size without enough lube. Do not use a free standing bench.
4) The way to attach a bench to the wall is to attach a 2x4 to the wall with a number of 3" screws and hit multiple studs.
5) Do not put benches on wheels that see a lot of force from your body pushing.
6) Benches should be triangulated so there is no parallel o gram joint twisting. plywood on the side makes a triangle structure as well as a strut.
7) Reloading needs fast feedback loops. Don't make a long distance trip to the range just to find the threshold of loose primer pockets in a work up. Shoot next to the vehicle and reload in the vehicle.
8) Reloading is boring. Put the reloading presses on a board clamped to the desk so you can watch youtube while reloading.
9) Revise the reloading press board to fit different desks, tables, benches, and vehicles.

I got a camper 3 days ago, Antelope season starts in 2 months, and I need to design the reloading bench that fits in the camper.
That's some good advice....

300 ft/lbs moment?!? Sheesh... Wonder what resizing 308 to 6.5 does... How long is the lever/arm on the rockchucker?

It makes sense to put the press on the short end... I don't want that bench on my lap... But... I'd rather Bolt the thing to the wall. Screwing a 2x to the wall then attaching the bench to that seems sturdy enough, and removable, as we're renting(from family, and they're fine with holes in the wall) but I didn't want to run huge bolts into the wall.

I think I may also put 2x4's diagonally from the front of the bench top to the back of the lower shelf. I don't like how unsupported the top is. I've also been debating putting another 4x4 post in the center.

But all that will have to wait until it's in its home because I have to take the top off to get it through the door

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Old August 7, 2016, 05:37 PM   #21
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If you suspect the bench could get tippy on you, just put something sturdy from under the lower shelf to the floor.
By the time you fill up that shelf with the weight of bullets and stuff, it probably won't even need that.
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Old August 7, 2016, 07:24 PM   #22
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I'm not terribly worried about it... Just would be nice to have a countermeasure in place

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Old August 8, 2016, 07:28 PM   #23
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If you use it as such, you will like the island design that gives you access to all sides of the bench. In the pic the rug plays an equal role in the system.

All the vertical stress is directly over the upright. The bench is rock solid and no natural force on the press lever causes the bench to move. Tieing the presses together with a steel plate spanning the uprights helps a lot in this regard.

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Old August 8, 2016, 09:06 PM   #24
nhyrum
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Originally Posted by flashhole View Post
If you use it as such, you will like the island design that gives you access to all sides of the bench. In the pic the rug plays an equal role in the system.

All the vertical stress is directly over the upright. The bench is rock solid and no natural force on the press lever causes the bench to move. Tieing the presses together with a steel plate spanning the uprights helps a lot in this regard.

I like the idea of the press being over the upright... Maybe I'll put a post where I want the press... I'd rather design the bench around where I want the press, then make the bench dictate where the press goes

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Old August 9, 2016, 05:51 AM   #25
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I used Floor and Stair paint on my bench. It dried like iron and has the uniform grey finish.
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