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Old December 16, 2012, 02:18 AM   #51
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I wonder how many of the other hundred you browsed without reading and lumped in that category incorrectly. Its not about time wasted reloading. It's about one of the most obvious benefits of reloading for the new reloaders trying to decide how into the hobby they want to get, and what the economics are for "paying off" the hobby. Especially if they have the proverbial angry wife to mollify.
Did not miss the main points but what did it turn into?

There is already a ton of searchable threads with info regarding the benefits of cost effectiveness from reloading and just about everyone of those posts has someone saying "What about the cost of your time?" If you noticed? I did post about your prices you listed for components.
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Old December 16, 2012, 08:52 AM   #52
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I started handloading when I was 14 or 15 years old and just turned 40, so 25 years of loading my own. I do it because I truly enjoy it, I have thousands of dollars in stuff I rarely use and some stuff I've never used, I have never looked into nor cared about my cost, I usually buy the most expensive stuff at the most expensive places lol, I mainly load for rifles and revolvers, I am a single stage guy and don't have any intentions of changing, the semi autos take more time than I care to spend so I quit messing with loading for them. I really enjoy working up loads for rifles and seeing just what I can get out of them
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Old December 16, 2012, 09:12 AM   #53
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I have a few really close friends that reload for the cost, they buy the cheapest they can find and rarely if ever buy anything if its not on sale, they also tend to yell the loudest when one of there budget bullets tear a deer apart from poor performance, I was testing some swift scirrocos one time and one of the guys showed up to visit and he about had a coronary that I was putting the swifts on paper and pounding a few in the end of a block of firewood to chop out later and see how they held up. I swear this particular friend probably has the first nickel he ever made! LOL, To each his own
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Old December 16, 2012, 10:48 AM   #54
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I usually use Cabela's prices to explain the cost of reloading as well .... but there are cheaper places to getthe exact same components.

As for "Joe Bob's fly by night garage plated bullets" ...... Cabela's sells the same Ranier Ballistics and Berry's plated bullets that you can buy direct......

...and I don't see any reason to use spendy jacketed bullets to punch paper, in loads that do not exceed 1200 f/sec.
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Old December 16, 2012, 01:57 PM   #55
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HMMM! Now lets compare apples to apples. Do you count your time in driving and shopping for your factory ammo? What about the gas? What if they are out of stock on your first trip?
Now that you are using Cabela's for your components, you need to compare it to THEIR Factory ammo too!
Cant count the equipment in to the cost, as mentioned earlier it can be resold for more.
Also there are alot of places to buy everything on your list for lots cheaper, that are not fly by night companies.
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Old December 16, 2012, 02:25 PM   #56
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OPPS forgot to mention!

I get a kick out the people who like to say," what about your time?".
I bet they mow their own lawn, and cook at home too! Lets see here now. $300 for a mower used 10 times in a year. $20 gas. 1.5 hrs @$20hr.
mower =$30 +gas=$2 + labor =$30 total =$62 for a lawn you could of had someone mow for you at $25.

Cooking 3.5 hrs for the meal and dishes. $70 the groceries and time to buy them. We could of went out and ate for that in alot less time.

Either you are for reloading or you are Trying to make excuses not too!
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Old December 16, 2012, 04:29 PM   #57
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I think that stuff belongs in a value discussion Mike. It shouldn't be the only factor, but yeah, I think it should be involved in the discussion.

To take one of your own examples... I happen to really really like the vietnamese soup that's taking my local area by storm, called Pho. It's about 10 bucks for a big ass bowl of beef noodle soup, so I thought I'd look up the recipe for making some at home. It started with cooking some soup bones for about 10 hours. At that point the value discussion came in, and I decided the stuff I bought at the restaurant wasn't so expensive anymore, and it wasn't worth my time to cook it. Both because I'd have to cook more than I could eat, and I'd be cooking it all day. Of course, I don't get a whole lot "extra" out of cooking my own food, like I do with making my own ammo. So, yeah I think you take your time into aco**** on a value judgment, with a proverbial "grain of salt" that its value and not "real money".
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Old December 16, 2012, 04:50 PM   #58
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I reload because I hate the idea of wasting brass that is still reusable

I reload because I want to reduce my cash outlay for shooting centerfire ammo.

I reload so I can get the power level I want.

I reload so I can have more independence from retailers' shelves.

I play with twisted steel rod puzzles and wooden block puzzles and Sudoku puzzles to entertain myself.

I calculate the value of my reloading time for the same reason I play with the puzzles.

It does not matter to me if my time value comes out negative or positive. I am curious about the number.

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Old December 19, 2012, 01:29 AM   #59
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JimDandy, the meaning of your post didn't get lost on me. You showed me, someone who's seriously considering getting into reloading, that even in a worst case scenario I'll come out money ahead.

Like others here, I'll price shop and spend less than your hypothetical scenario. I'll be more money ahead. And also like others here, I'll not count my time (although I understand your rationale for doing so). Even more money ahead.

The people telling you your prices are too high or that you shoulda figured things a different way missed the whole point. You were showing that even in a worst case scenario, someone shooting on a regular basis would eventually come out money ahead. On the plus side, their comments have given me a feel for the other end of the reloading cost spectrum...again, something that's useful for a newcomer to reloading like me.
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Old December 19, 2012, 10:45 AM   #60
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Hard to put a price on reloading. I've been doing it for about 50 years, so the cost of my reloading gear is spread out that far.

I think the thing that saved me the most money is I cast bulltet, not just for pistols/revolvers but for rifles as well.

Prices of powder and primers have gone up in the last 50 years but no different then anything else.

Actually I can afford to pay 3.50 per hunderd for primers now more then I could afford .78 I remember paying long ago.

Some times I don't save as much. I do buy some fancy bullets for some of my target ammo, still cheaper then buying loaded match rounds.

I don't count my time, I'm retired, and enjoy reloading. Besides, I can load a lot of ammo for what it would cost me in time to drive to Rapid City or Gillette, (each 80 miles one way).

I don't buy lead, I get it by cleaning out the lead traps at our club's indoor range. A couple of 5 gal buckets of lead will cast a lot of bullets.

Don't get the idea you need to lay out a large sum of money to get started in bullet casting. Just last month I got a friend started in casting for their 40 cal pistols.

Lets see what it cost to get them started.

Lee Mold 25.98
Luber sizer 23.98
Ladle 5.98

Two cast iron pots (flea market) 5 ea or $10

They had a weed burner.

So that's $75.94

You can load a heck of a lot of bullets with that equipment. Except for the lube that came with the size, the rest will last forever with care.

Figuring 40 cal bulles are 25-30 bucks a hundred, it wont take long to pay for the loading equipment.

Here is another example of savings. Every buy 375 H&H bullets. I shoot a heck of a lot of them, dern near $1 per bullet. Not for me. I have a mold that uses 3/8 copper tubing and make jacketed 375 bullets pretty dern cheap. Actually they cost me nothing, I can always pick up scrape copper tubing, and as mentioned I don't buy lead.

You can shoot them at normal 375 velocities, pretty dern accurate, and I've shot thousands and never had the jacket seperate.

270 gr 375 H&H Mold:

Kraig Stuart
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Old December 19, 2012, 01:32 PM   #61
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Jim Dandy,

I liked your basic premise and I think you picked a representative sample for each scenario.

I would suggest that the reloading equipment including the dies are your invested cost that needs to be "paid for" by the savings you might accrue by reloading cost per round versus the factory cost per round.
The reloading cost per round for me includes cartridge cases, powder, bullets, and primers. I divide the cartridge case cost by the number of times I reload them. After 15 reloads on one case, I find the necks don't hold a resize consistently and I replace them. I don't include my time.

The factory cost is just the cost of purchase. I totaled up cost of the rounds I was shooting for each caliber (I measure everything so I have great records).

Unfortunately, I started with higher end single stage loading set up including an RCBS Chargemaster dispenser scale, Trim Mate, Redding Boss II and caliper trimmer which are pretty high cost items and I didn't wait for sales.
I also bought dies for 7 rifle calibers and 5 pistol calibers.
The total was close to $ 1400. But I started loading for a .308 so the initial investment for that single caliber was about $1130 for the first caliber.

I had been shooting mostly match ammo with the .308 so the factory ammo that I had been shooting averaged $ 1.218 per shot. Over the last 2 years, I have averaged 0.457 per .308 reload, using purchased Remington, Winchester, Nosler and Lapua brass. I have been averaging 15 reloads per case before I replace the brass so even the most expensive Nosler brass costs only 0.055 per round.

It took me 1484 rounds to amortize the invested cost of equipment from the $0.761 savings per .308 reloaded round (Based on .308 dies alone). Since I was really into reloading when I started and tried to recover that cost as soon as I could, the initial cost was amortized in just under 4 months.

Over the last 28 months I have reloaded over 15,100 rounds.
The vast majority of them were for rifles so the average savings per round over the factory rounds that I was shooting for each caliber amounted to $0.714 for rifles. The total comparative savings to date, after taking out the cost of equipment and materials, comes to $8,992.

That really isn't a savings because I wouldn't have shot all those rounds if I had to pay almost $ 9000 more than I actually did, but I did get to shoot almost 3 times the number of rounds I would have shot if I paid for factory ammo.

Rifle ammo can be really expensive for some calibers with the .22-250 being the one I saved the most on. It is cheap to reload even with expensive bullets ($0.308 per reload) but I never could find any low cost factory ammo so I am saving $0.942 per load with that particular bullet.
On the other hand, the 7.62x39 factory rounds are really cheap so I only save about $0.095 per round reloading them. It almost isn't worth the effort, especially since my AK is a spray and pray rifle anyway and doesn't seem to notice the difference.

The pistol caliber savings averaged only about 0.525. Since I wasn't shooting the cheap stuff in my pistols, that is still a considerable savings per round, but I had been shooting the cheapest factory ammo available, the savings per round would have been a whole lot less. I would probably have taken lots of reloads to make up the cost of my equipment.
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Old December 19, 2012, 11:24 PM   #62
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Kraig, thats cool!
I've thought of trying that myself but aint had the time and dont have the mold.
It looks easier than the Wilks (I think) system with tubing instead of lube in the grooves.
Its something to try and play with anyway. I defanitly have to try it now.
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