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Old June 4, 2011, 02:00 AM   #26
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Don't unhitch the mules, we're gonna plow it again!

Quite honestly, OP, there probably isn't a right answer. We all applaud your decision to "roll yer own" but I don't have any idea if you'll be loading five years from now or what you'll be loading for, doubt you do either. I can guarantee you one thing; if you pay attention to details and safety and read what these experienced folks and your loading manuals tell you you're in for quite an exciting ride.
If you can't afford a turret right now, go with a single stage. You'll likely find use for it later if you decide to upgrade. If you can afford a turret or progressive step right up and grab one. They can generally be used as a single-stage if you wish but I think you'll eventually want a SS press around for special projects.
Loading with one type of press or one brand of loading equipment is like hitting the links with only one club. You can get it done but it there are better ways.
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Old June 4, 2011, 11:16 AM   #27
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My first thought was, got to get a turret press, after watching You Tube on reloading, but after the reading I have been doing, I am going a single stage press. There is soooooo much to learn that I am not going to hurry. One step at a time for me. And in reality, I think I can keep up with the amount of shooting I get to do with the single stage. This is sport/fun for me, no hurry.
I would suggest you start with the turret and use it just like a single stage then when you are ready for more speed you will already have the turret. No need to rush, but having the ability to increase speed without any additional cost has to be a big plus.
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Old June 4, 2011, 03:40 PM   #28
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Here is some food for thought that you might like.. This has nothing really to do with turret vs single stage, but loading in general.

My father in law found out I bought a press and asked if I could make him some shells. I said sure if he bought the dies. Well it turns out he shoots a .308 norma and was paying $104 per 20 here in Canada.

I loaded him 8 boxes of shells for about $250 (including dies). I saved him $582 using a $99 press. Pretty cool I thought.
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Old June 4, 2011, 04:41 PM   #29
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Hey travellerw, I have an acquaintance that may be looking to load .308 Norma -- one of the oddballs, it's a relatively hard to find caliber. And dies are usually the "special order" type, not full custom, but usually not sitting on the shelf at the local gun store.

What brand of dies did you buy and where did you get them? Finding .30-06 dies is something you could do in your sleep. .308 Norma Mag, not as easy.
Attention Brass rats and other reloaders: I really need .327 Federal Magnum brass, no lot size too small. Tell me what caliber you need and I'll see what I have to swap. PM me and we'll discuss.
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Old June 4, 2011, 05:27 PM   #30
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When I started loading in the early 70's I went single stage RCBS and was pleased (still am) cause the majority of my loading was for rifle hunting ammo usually 20 rounds at a time after I developed a load for the rifle..

My hand gun was a 38/357 and loaded a box at a time. When I started Varmint shooting my demand for 22-250 increased by leaps and bounds. So I found myself spending more repetitive time at the press for larger runs of cartridges.

Then I obtained my first 45 ACP (1911) and ultimately started shooting comp. Now this is where the single stage becomes brutally time consuming So I picked up a Lee Turret and found happiness. Then progressives came.

So what I recommend is a turret press. A "TP" makes life easier and can be used as a single stage press. It is fairly easy to learn to learn on. And fairly quickly produces larger amounts of cartridges in a short period pistol or rifle such as .223 or 762 X39.

A single stage press such as the RCBS Rock Crusher is ideal for working up a test load for your rifles. And is further ideal in creating "exact" copies 20 at a time.

Accessories needed are pretty much the same.. Get a good manual or two to read and do diligence. SPEER Manual tends to be my favorite.

Good Luck
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Old June 4, 2011, 08:27 PM   #31
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Believe it or not.. I walked into Wholesale Sports (Canada's large sports store) and asked for .308 norma dies.. The guy behind the counter laughed and said "Geez I just received 2 in stock, first our store has gotten". They are RCBS dies.. I did some quick searching on the internet and your buddy should be able to find them easily enough.

For a load.. You can use any 30-338 load. We found a load on a sniper forum (snipers hide) that we choose. It was tested by a few people on there and they verified its very accurate and hard hitting.

200gn Nosler Partition
64.5gn of IMR 4350
330 OAL

I have heard that some Norma's can be picky so I was very careful to trim the brass to factory specs.
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Old June 4, 2011, 09:00 PM   #32
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Good info. I'll bet he's still got that other set... and still will 5 years from now! Yep, I know RCBS makes them... they have them listed in a separate price category. It's one of the "we don't sell a zillion of them" sets, so it costs more.

My buddy is in Iraq now until September, so we'll see if he's still interested in bringing this rifle back to life, or moving to something a little easier to feed. Afterall, we live in Ohio. We can shoot rifles here, but not at deer. It's a pretty heavy caliber for anything you might do in Ohio.

But just to make it roar? Yeah, I'll be in on that project if he wants to go that route.
Attention Brass rats and other reloaders: I really need .327 Federal Magnum brass, no lot size too small. Tell me what caliber you need and I'll see what I have to swap. PM me and we'll discuss.
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Old June 4, 2011, 10:01 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by paulcissa
Although you expect to turn out rounds faster via progressive, I'd caution about making your first press a multi-station/progressive.
The Lee Turret Press (or Classic Turret Press -- same thing with a cast iron base) is NOT a progressive. It's somewhere between a single stage and a progressive, and it offers two ways to use it.

The 4-hole Turret Press has auto-indexing. If you use that, the turret rotates 1/4 turn with each stroke of the handle, so you install a 4-die set and with four strokes of the handle you have loaded ONE round. Then you start over for the next round. For each pull of the handle, there is only one operation being performed, and three dies are doing nothing. On a progressive, something happens at each station on every pull.

You can also remove the auto-index and run the Turret Press as a single stage -- the turret doesn't advance when you pull the handle.

I'm another fan of the Lee Turret Press. I started in with reloading using a Lee single stage press, before the Challenger press went to "breech lock." Having to remove and reset dies for each operation drove me nuts. I don't work like a speed demon, but the time I have available for reloading is limited so I quickly (like, in about a week or two) outgrew the single stage. I didn't feel ready, either in experience or in funding, for a full progressive, so the Lee Deluxe Turret Press kit seemed like a good compromise. After using it for several years, I now think it was a GREAT compromise.

Anyone who is interested in Lee presses and products should check out this site: . It is NOT owned or operated by Lee, it is operated by just one of us shooters, who likes Lee products but thinks their instructions are horrible, so he created a forum where Lee users can support one another.

Here are some video's of the Turret Press in action, from that forum site:
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Old June 6, 2011, 09:09 PM   #34
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I used a single stage press for about 8 years before I got a Lee Classic Cast Turret.

The turret is AT LEAST twice as fast as the single stage, and maybe 3 times as fast.

I still use the single stage for small batches.

Your Lee would be slower since you will have to adjust the dies every time.
Not true. You adjust the does once when you put them in the turret, and that's it. Never again. JUst buy a $12 turret for each die set. Then you change the whole set of dies in 5 seconds. Quite speedy.
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Old June 7, 2011, 06:06 AM   #35
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My son and I just bought a Redding T7 turret press Saturday. Used a Lyman Spartan single for years. This T7 press is SUPER!

Not that we reload a truck load of our own rounds, just this turret press makes it so much simpler and quicker.

While our auto dispenser is throwing a charge, we can complete one full round at a time. Before we had to do a block full and change dies then repeat and change. Now all the dies are set and you keep busy.

I looked at the Lee, Hornady, RCBS and the Redding felt the best and looked like quality. Besides it is even casted in the USA.

Now if we were going to be reloading hundreds at a time, I would have looked at a progressive. I am still leery of automation when it comes to reloading. Rather check each step as I go.
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Old June 7, 2011, 10:00 PM   #36
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Owee!Lots of opinions here! It seems most like the "Lee Classic Turret"[cast].
I've been looking at both the Lyman T-Mag II turret and LCT. For what I want it for, I think I'll go for the Lee. This would be for two pistol rounds only. I'd still use my RCBS RC for rifle loading.From what loaders have said, the Lee just looks like the one I would need. pretty persuasive comments guys.
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Old June 7, 2011, 10:03 PM   #37
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Oh, BTW, TXGunNut, I think your post is right on the money. Thanks.
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Old June 8, 2011, 05:57 PM   #38
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Yep, Lee classic turret. I have been loading on mine five years. I load 9mm, 38 spcl, 45 auto and 223. I like to load at a comfortable pace and can load around 180 to 200 rounds per hour. It's a great press for a beginner to start with. Very easy to set up and operate.
I don't ever remember being absent minded.
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Old June 25, 2011, 11:44 PM   #39
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My $0.02

I started reloading about 3 years ago with a used Lee Pro 1000 (progressive). I soon went out and got a Lee Single-Stage c frame also. I use the progressive to deprime/resize and charge the cases. For priming, I use a hand primer. For bullet seating, I use the single stage. It is the method that I feel best about. If I had to start all over, I would go with the classic turret press. It is single-stage process with fast die changes (or that is my perception of it). Rather than change out each die individually, you change out by caliber. I only reload handgun ammo. I don't really like the progressive loading myself. Seems like too much going on at once for me to pay attention to. That's my 2 cents worth. Good luck.
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Old June 26, 2011, 12:49 PM   #40
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I started handloading a year ago, and with an estimated 600 rounds per month, decided to start with a progressive press.

Buy once, cry once.

If your volume dictates a progressive press, then you should consider one.

I still often use the progressive in turret "mode" if I'm loading precision charges and want to weigh every throw. If charge isn't critical (meaning- being "off" a few tenths), I will use it as a true progressive.

In any case, I don't see a single stage press as being practical for any sort of volume reloading. You can learn the "basics" just as easily on a turret or progressive.

While reloading was "fun" the first few times, I now view it as a necessary chore. And the quicker I can get a few hundred rounds done, with the necessary accuracy and safety, the better...
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Old June 26, 2011, 04:39 PM   #41
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"My Lee Classic Cast single stage can load .50 BMG. Can your Classic Turret do that?!"

I worry about that when I can afford a .50 BMG. Right now the Classic Turret is all I need to load .308 for my 1919a4.
30 carbine

I de-prime and size like a single stage. Then trim cases, inspect and prime by hand. Then back to the turret to load.

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Old June 26, 2011, 06:24 PM   #42
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This was the same question I faced. I wanted the Forster Co-Ax and the Lee Classic Turret. I ended up buying both at the same time. I knew that i was going to use both. I didn't even un-box the turret press until I learned on the Co-Ax. Once I became comfortable, I set up the turret and got to crankin out pistol rounds. Co-Ax gets the rifle reloading work.
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