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Old 03-23-2010, 05:59 PM
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Arrow RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

Congratulations (TO ALL) for taking your first step in beginning your independence by reloading your own ammunition. As reloaderís have known for years (Generations) there are several distinct advantages to reloading our own ammunition, .

1. Itís cheaper than factory ammo
2. It shoots straighter than factory ammo
3. It shoots faster than factory ammo
4. Itís more reliable than factory ammo
5. Itís more accurate than factory ammo
6. Itís a hell of lot of fun.
7. Itís provides you with all of the ammunition you will ever need.

Iíll attempt to provide you with a foundation that you can comfortably build off of in regards to different tools of the trades youíll need to have that are currently available to us.

Please note:
The information presented here is based off my own personnel experiences (9 years) and opinion and the personnel opinions and experiences of others that I have had the pleasure of meeting over the years. It is the sole responsibility of the individual reloader to thoroughly review, examine and (for GOD SAKES) research each product and method of reloading for Him and or herself. Please consider this a merely a guide to use in your endeavor to produce safe and reliable ammunition. [/COLOR]


With that said lets begin!..


Recommended list of items needed for the Beginner
(Rifle & Pistol)
1.Reloading Manual: Accurate Arms, A-Square, Barnes, Hodgdon, Hornady, Lapua, Lee, Lyman, Nosler, Sierra, SPG, Speer and Vihtavouri.
2.Press: Single Stage, Turret or Progressive
3.Dies
4.Shell holders (if the die set doesn't have them)
5.Case Tumbler: Media, Polish, Sifter, Bucket and Clear Lid
6.Loading Block (caliber specific)
7.Case Lube (you won't need if using carbide dies)
8.Case Neck Brush
9.Dial Calipers: Stainless Steel or Electronic
10.Case Trimmer
11.Deburring Tool
12.Primer Pocket Clean
13.Primer Tray
14.Priming Tool (if the press doesn't come with a primer attachment)
15.Powder Scale
16.Powder Funnel
17.Powder Trickler
18.Powder Measure (nice for faster powder charges)
19.Bullet Puller
20.Plastic Ammo boxes and labels
NOTE!
You can always mix brands, shop Around for the Best Deals!



Building a proper foundation:
Before you go out and spend your hard earned money on the latest and greatest reloading supplies I strongly suggest that you buy, borrow or check from your local library this book First!! This book should be mandatory reading for all reloaderís.

ďThe ABCís of reloadingĒ The Definitive Guide For Novice To Expert (Paperback)
Amazon.com:..."><font face=Amazon.com:..." />Amazon.com:...

It can be found on amazon.com for $16.49 and it will provide you with the proper foundation in order for you to produce safe and reliable ammunition.



Reloading Manuals.
You should try to have at least 3 different on hand to reference at all times. Personally I would look into acquiring the following: Lyman 49th, Serra 5th and Speer's Manual No. 14. (Please note) Many manuals are made by the Bullet manufactures so the data is geared towards their products. Also note that each powder manufacture also has their own loading data recommendations that you should also review, especially if youíre new to reloading. Also each reloader should also have a (powder burn chart) to review and reference: Powder Burn Rates


Bench.
You are going to need a good strong bench to work from. You can make your own or use a table. I have found it really helps to attach the bench to the wall to stabilize it. Also be sure to have more than adequate lighting! There no such thing as too much light here! You will need to have enough light on the press and the bench that will allow you to easily look in a case to see the powder and that requires good lighting. A good sitting height is 30-32 inchís, standing is about 36-42 inchís.


Powder Scale.
Get a good scale. Cheapest good scale I am willing to recommend is going to cost about $59. Most people buy a beam scale to start. I will recommend the Dillon Eliminator Dillon's 'Eliminator' Scale: Powder Scales scale, because it has a lifetime warranty, is made by Ohaus and is very well priced for its quality. If buy it directly from Dillon you get a Blue Press every month. Dillon, RCBs, CED, Pact and others all make good Electric Scales. I have tried some of the cheap electric scales and they are not worth the money. Expect to pay around $90 or more for a good electric scale. You will find many people have very different opinions about electric scales. I am not going to recommend one other then to recommend that you get a name brand and expect to pay about double the beam scale cost. Be sure you can plug it in and not rely only on batteries and that it has check weights. For what it worth! I have / use this one and LOVE IT! Dillon Precision: Reloaders, Reloading Equipment, Bullet Reloading, Bullet Reloaders


Dial / Digital Calipers.
You will find a bunch of people who sell Electric Dial Calipers that cost about $50. You will also find Harbor Freight sells what looks like the same thing for under $20. I got mine for under $20 at Harbor Freight and have been extremely satisfied with it - Harbor Freight Tools - Quality Tools at the Lowest Prices . You can get regular dial calipers cheaper but unless you are familiar with their use I am going to recommend the digital one just to avoid user error. Simplify your life gentlemen donít complicate it.


Flip Tray.
Dillon sells a nice one that I know works extremely well (I have it!). Midway USA has several options such as the Lyman, RCBS and MTM all have ďPrimer Turning TrayísĒ and they are about a 1/3 the price of the Dillon.


Tumbler.
There are two different tumblers available that you should be aware of:
1. Rotary
2. Vibrator

I would strongly recommend a tumbler as all good reloading starts with clean brass. You can find tumblers just about anywhere (Wall mart, Midway, Harbor freight, Dillon, RCBs, etc). Harbor freight has great (cheap) Vibrator tumbler for just under $60.00 - Harbor Freight Tools - Quality Tools at the Lowest Prices of course a tumbler is not required, you can always just wipe off each case by hand (huge PITA) and or you can wash the cases with water/vinegar and some soap. Then let them dry a really long time (48 Ė 72 hrs). This actually works pretty well if you have time to wait for them to dry. You just want to be sure all the water was out of the case before loading. (JUST NOTE!) The tumbler is the place with the most of the potential for lead exposure happens. PLEASE do this task outside and away from kids!..



Dies. (In general)
Dillon, Lee, RCBs and other all make good dies. Take my advice buy only one set of dies to start with and learn the process before you buy more latter. You can use Lee Dies on Dillon/Hornady presses. Get the Lee Deluxe Die set for pistol if you choose the Lee. They are carbide dies and you want carbide dies. Dillon and other dies cost more but they have some nice features Lee does not have. Functionally they all will work just fine. So donít sweat it. I use Lee dies on my 550 and have one Dillon die. Itís just not that big a deal. You will find every Die maker sells their dies a little differently. Dillon Die Sets do not include the Powder die because that die is supplied with the press. Dillon includes a Sizing Die, Seating Die and Crimp Die. Lee 3 and 4 die sets both include a powder die that only works with the Lee Powder Measure (but can be used as a flaring die on the LnL). The Lee 3 die set does not include a Factory Crimp Die (FCD) or a dedicated crimp die. As with most 3 Die Sets the bullet seating die also crimps the case at the same time. Leeís 4 die set includes a Factory Crimp Die which is a crimping die that also does a final resize of the cartridge to insure everything is in spec. Hornady sells you a Sizer, Seating/Crimp (Like a Lee) and a flaring die. With any 3 Die Set I would recommend that you get a separate crimp die and avoid crimping and seating the bullet at the same time. For those that donít like the idea of resizing a completed round with the Lee 4 Die Set and the FCD, just get Leeís Deluxe 3 Die set and add the proper crimp die for your caliber from Lee or someone else.
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"We are fast approaching the stage of the ultimate inversion:
the stage where the government is free to do anything it pleases,
while the citizens may act only by permission; which is the stage
of the darkest periods of human history, the stage of rule by brute force."
- Ayn Rand
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Old 03-23-2010, 05:59 PM
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Default Re: RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

Choosing your press.
So how do you choose? Well, there is no easy answer to that one my friend, but I will say the LCT is a great first press. Itís inexpensive and easy to learn. It makes some acceptable tradeoffs in the name of price. The Dillon 550 is simple for a ďprogressiveĒ (one pull of handle gives you one cartridge). Itís probably the easiest to setup and use for the newbie reloader. It does everything it tries to do well but does not try to do everything. Simplicity and reliability are its strengths. LnL is a tough press to classify. Itís cheaper than the 550. Itís on par with the 650 in some ways and some will argue its better than the 650 in others.

Once you set it up as a real 5 station press itís a smoking good deal for the money. But people have had issues with that PTX die so be aware it may not function as well as a 5 Station Press. It too has a lifetime warranty. Many people (including myself) are loyal to Dillon and continue to pay a premium for Dillon products. More USPSA shooters use Dillon Presses by a HUGE margin but Hornady is gaining ground. These are tough calls. Wise people have said ďA press is a lifetime investmentĒ so therefore cost should not a factor when obtaining your press.



Press Design
Let us briefly talk about what a ďstationĒ is on a press. You will hear me and others talk about ďItís a 3,4,5 station pressĒ. First letís review the basics of the press and what functions it performs.

1) Resizes and de-primes the case
2) Primes case
3) Flares the neck to allow easy bullet insertion
4) Inserts powder in case
5) Seats the bullet
6) Crimps the Bullet (removes flare and adds the required pressure against the bullet) is a better way to think about it).

Most 4 station presses operate in the same way. 5 station presses can be configured a variety of ways. The primary reason for a 5 station press is a Powder Check Die to insure every case has powder. Itís still important to look in every case even with the powder check die. Here is the standard process of a 4 station press:

Station 1. Resize/de-prime case on the down stroke, prime case at the end of the upstroke
Station 2. Flare the case and insert powder
Station 3. Seat bullet
Station 4. Crimp/Remove flare

Some 5 station press will give you an extra station after the flaring/powder drop for a powder check die. The LnL does not come configured like this from the start but itís easy to set it up to work as a traditional 5 station press. For the record the Lee Load Master does not have room for a powder check die if you seat and crimp in separate stations.

All right now the fun part. Letís talk about presses. I am only going to list the presses that most owners have expressed good results. Iím so sorry, if your favorite press is not listed but thatís the breaks big guy (suck it up! LOL). This thread is meant to help the newbie get into reloading without a lot of hassle. Iím trying to be objective but at the same time list the differences and issues so you can make a wise choice.



Single Stage Presses.
Nearly everyone makes a good single stage. Hornady, Lyman, RCBs, Lee and Redding all have kits assembled with all the stuff you need to start reloading (reloading blocks, scales, etc). The only major draw back when using a single stage press is its slow.. But itís a GREAT!!! way to start out in reloading. If you are going to reload on a single stage I would strongly recommend you get the Lyman Reloading Manual. Read it and then choose your kit based on your needs. Low volume rifle shooters should really consider the single stage as their first press.


Lee Classic Turret. (LCT)
www.leeprecision.com
Itís considered an ďauto indexing turretĒ press. You have to pull the handle 4 times to get one completed round. Lee is the only maker who does this type of press. Itís a lot faster then a normal turret and cheaper on top of it all. You can expect to load about 200rds an hour once you get in the groove. You can get a nice LCT kit from Home - Kempf Gun Shop. Be aware that others sell a kit but the kit includes the dreaded Lee Scale. Avoid them. Kempfís kit includes:

ē Lee Classic Turret Press
ē Lee Deluxe 4-Die Set for the pistol caliber of your choice. (3 Die set in 380)
ē Lee Auto Disk Powder Measure
ē Lee Safety Prime System (Large or Small)
ē Lee Auto Disk Riser (Required for the Safety Prime System)
ē Six MTM 50 round Plastic Ammo Boxes

I would recommend you upgrade the kit to the Pro Auto Disc Powder Measure. Not only does it give you the better powder measure but you also get the Large and Small primer setup. Itís worth it for the powder measure alone. With this kit you do not need a primer turning tray. The Auto Disc powder measure does not have the ability to adjust powder to very small increments like most measures. You simply change ďdiscsĒ with different size holes to get the charge you want. This gets you pretty close and it works fine. You can add an adjustable charge bar but it does not work well with small charges and some powders. People say it works better with larger volume charges. Lee even warns you about this on their instructions. The priming system is workable. Some people have had to add a washer under the primer mounting location to get it 100% dialed in. Most people donít have any trouble doing this slight mod. The LCT is a great, low cost, relatively quick entry into reloading. Once you get it dialed in itís amazing how much ammo it can make. Caliber changes are so easy itís unbelievable. You can also easily disable the auto-indexing and convert it to a single stage press. Itís brilliant in its simplicity and function.
__________________

"We are fast approaching the stage of the ultimate inversion:
the stage where the government is free to do anything it pleases,
while the citizens may act only by permission; which is the stage
of the darkest periods of human history, the stage of rule by brute force."
- Ayn Rand
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  #3  
Old 03-23-2010, 06:01 PM
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Default Re: RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

Dillon
Square Deal B/550/650
Dillon Precision: Reloaders, Reloading Equipment, Bullet Reloading, Bullet Reloaders
For a great overview of Dillon products go to
Dillon Precision Reloading Press Reviews
Square Deal B (SDB) only loads pistol. It is an auto indexing 4 station press. It uses special non-upgradeable Dillon dies. It comes with Dies and is preset from the factory ready to go. Just add Powder, Primers and components. Itís a good press. If you will never want to load rifle then you should consider it. Caliber Conversion Cost more then the 550 so be aware and price it out as you will eventually want it set up to get a real price comparison. The tool-head/shell-plate is smaller so itís a little harder to manipulate. You can not use any other dies so if you need a different sizing die (for instance) you are out of luck.


Dillon 550. The 550 is a 4 station manually indexing press. It is sold with out dies but with the proper caliber conversion for one caliber which includes the shell-plate, locator buttons and powder funnel. It also comes with the Powder Die for the Powder Measure. All you do is add dies of your choice for your caliber. I highly recommend you order from BrianEnos.com. He will make sure you get the right stuff when you order. Dillon sells a lot of upgrades for the 550/650. Avoid them to start with, Christmas is always less then a year away and you can treat yourself later. I am also going to suggest only getting one caliber to start with even if you have multiple calibers to load. Just buy it for your most common caliber. Learn and then get the other parts later. The back of the manual has all the info about caliber conversions. You can also learn about caliber conversion on Brian Enosís excellent website. Go read and learn. When you need to change calibers you will need a combination of these parts; shellplate, locator buttons and powder funnel. You will also want a new toolhead and powder die. All you do is swap your Powder measure over from one toolhead to the next. If you are going to load sitting you do not want the Strong Mount. Standing you will want it depending on the bench height. I would get the Strong Mount for standing, but itís personal preference (same goes for the 650 and the strong mount). The 550ís strengths are its simplicity, reliability and reasonable speed (about 400rds a hour). For a Dillon the caliber conversions are reasonably priced. Because it doesnít auto-index itís easier to clear problems and do caliber conversions. Like the 650 it comes with a low primer sensor and has a ton of options. Dillonís No BS warranty is one of the best. Some people donít like that it does not auto-index. You need to be sure to index the press every time you pull the handle. Itís a little slower as a result. You index the press while your right hand is grabbing a new case so itís not really that big a deal. You also may want to seat the bullet in station #2. Then you simply can not double charge the case if you always seat the bullet right after looking in the case because the bullet is in the way. All the Dillons have a excellent Fail-Safe System to help prevent short stroking and double charges as a result of short stroking the press.

Dillon 650. This is a 5 station auto-indexing press. Because itís a 5 station press it has room for a Powder Check Die. Besides that itís a typical Dillon. Itís sold just like the 550 with out dies but with the caliber conversion parts you need for your chosen caliber. Caliber conversion take a little more time and are more expensive than the 550. If you shoot a lot you wonít care because you will buy a casefeeder and really crank out the ammo. Strength are itís 5 stations, auto-indexing for added speed. Caliber conversion costs more and takes more time to accomplish than a 550.

Options I would probably buy with any Dillon from the start are:
1) Toolholder/Wrench Set $26. Has a set of Ball Head Allen Wrenchs and a Bench Wrench.
2) Dillon Lock rings if you use the Lee dies (550/650 only)
3) Spare Parts kit. This avoids any downtime if you break anything.
Thatís it. I know there are a lot more but start simple and cheap (at least for a Dillon). For instance I used to think having a bunch of primer tubes was important. Now I like the change in pace that I get from loading 100rds, taking a break to load a primer tube and loading another 100rds, repeat. So I donít use my extra primer tubes any longer. Spare parts kit avoids any downtime. Dillon will replace the parts that wear out.
Recommended Setup:
550/650, comes with proper powder die, buttons, powder funnel. Add either Dillon Dies or the Lee 3 or 4 dieset (if you use the three die set get the crimp die as well), Scale, Dial Calipers, Tumbler. Add the Dillon 1 inch lock rings if you use the Lee Dies. Spare parts kit, Toolholder.



Hornady Lock N Load (LnL)
http://www.hornady.com/
The LnL is like a 650 with some minor but important differences. It is a 5 station auto-indexing press. It does not use a ďtoolheadĒ but instead mounts each die in its own individual ďbushingĒ. So you donít change a toolhead you just change out the dies one at a time in their bushings. They donít loose their adjustment. As a result you donít have to swap over the Powder Measure when you do caliber conversions. Some people really like the setup as it makes some things easier. The LnL is a 5 station press but as it ships from the factory it uses all its available stations because it does not flare and drop powder at the same time. So unlike the Dillon the LnL does not come standard with a Powder Measure/die that flares the case and throws the powder charge all at the same time. It uses a separate die to flare the case mouth and that die takes up the extra station it has over the 550. Hornady sells the proper dies for flaring or you can use a Lee Powder die with the powder funnel installed to hold the expander in place. You can convert the LnL to flare and throw the powder all at the same time. Itís called the Powder Through Expander(PTX). The PTX has not received good reviews from some people. You only need it if you are going to add a powder check die. It works fine for most people who donít use lead bullets. Even some people have success with it and lead bullets. I hear it is getting redesigned to flare better and that would really solve its only drawback. Hornady does not offer as many calibers with the PTX setup check to be sure your desired calibers have the proper insert. The Press does not come with a shellplate. Get the proper shellplate when you order the press. One other difference with the LnL over the 550/650 is you load both the bullet and case on the left side of the press. 550/650 you load the bullet on the left and the case on the right. Besides that the LnL is much like the 650 and itís a lot less expensive. Hornady recently has been working hard to improve this press (new ejection system). They have a lifetime warranty on the press as well. Once dialed in itís a fast, inexpensive press especially if Hornady is offering the ďFree BulletsĒ like it normally does. It does seem to require a little more time/effort to setup then the Dillon because the instructions are not as good. Many of the Dillon accessories can be adapted to work on the LnL. If you are willing to spend the time to learn itís setup then this press is a great press. Many claim itís Powder Measure is better then the Dillon. It even indexís in Ĺ steps which is unique and smoother. The powder measure has some great options that Dillon does not offer. It does not come with a Low Primer Warning system. You can adapt the RCBS/Dillon system to the LnL.
Recommended Setup.
LnL, Shellplate, Hornandy Custom Grade New Dimension Dies, add a crimping die of your choice (Lee Dies can work fine), Scale, Dial Calipers, Tumbler. Add a RCBS low primer sensor as well. PTX die if you are going to want a powder check die. An aftermarket PTX die insert is available at Powderfunnels.com -- Fully Featured Powder Through Exapnder I have heard good things about this PTX option.
__________________

"We are fast approaching the stage of the ultimate inversion:
the stage where the government is free to do anything it pleases,
while the citizens may act only by permission; which is the stage
of the darkest periods of human history, the stage of rule by brute force."
- Ayn Rand
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Old 03-23-2010, 06:02 PM
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Default Re: RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

Here is a list of manufactures and or companies that you should know about if you plan on reloading and buying reloading supplies:

Listed in no Particular Order

Where to find "Bullet"s:
dardas cast bullets
Berry's Manufacturing
Missouri Bullet Company
Home
Rocky Mountain Reloading
Roze Distribution, Inc. - Zero Bullets and Ammunition
Montana Gold Bullet, Incorporated - Kalispell, Montana
www.precisiondelta.com/index1.htm
X-Treme Bullets - (800) 482-2103
Scharch Mfg Inc.
Graf & Sons - The Reloading Authority
Shooting Supplies, Reloading, Gunsmithing, Hunting, Ammunition, Gun Parts & Rifle Scopes — MidwayUSA
Gamaliel Shooting Supply - Rifle Scopes, Reloading Supplies, Gun Accessories, Guns
Dpms firearms, panther arms, dpms panther arms, dpms, dpms firearms, dpms guns
Widener's Reloading and Shooting Supply INC
Specializing in Reloading Supplies and Equipment for Firearms - Sinclair International
Natchez Shooters Supplies
TJCONEVERA.COM
Rocky Mountain Reloading
Home



Who has "Primers?":
Cabela's Official Website - Quality Hunting, Fishing, Camping and Outdoor Gear at competitive prices.
Powder Valley, Inc.
Graf & Sons - The Reloading Authority
Shooting Supplies, Reloading, Gunsmithing, Hunting, Ammunition, Gun Parts & Rifle Scopes — MidwayUSA
Natchez Shooters Supplies
Widener's Reloading and Shooting Supply INC
Specializing in Reloading Supplies and Equipment for Firearms - Sinclair International
Dpms firearms, panther arms, dpms panther arms, dpms, dpms firearms, dpms guns
Gamaliel Shooting Supply - Rifle Scopes, Reloading Supplies, Gun Accessories, Guns


Where can I get "Brass":
Starline Brass - Maker of America's Finest Handgun Brass
Once Fired Brass, Once fired 9mm, Once fired .40, Reloading supplies, Pistol brass, cast bullets
Berry's Manufacturing
Shooting Supplies, Reloading, Gunsmithing, Hunting, Ammunition, Gun Parts & Rifle Scopes — MidwayUSA
Graf & Sons - The Reloading Authority
Gamaliel Shooting Supply - Rifle Scopes, Reloading Supplies, Gun Accessories, Guns
Powder Valley, Inc.
Starline Brass - Maker of America's Finest Handgun Brass
Natchez Shooters Supplies
TJCONEVERA.COM
Dpms firearms, panther arms, dpms panther arms, dpms, dpms firearms, dpms guns

Reloading Press and Tools:
Home - Kempf Gun Shop
Gamaliel Shooting Supply - Rifle Scopes, Reloading Supplies, Gun Accessories, Guns
Dillon Precision: Reloaders, Reloading Equipment, Bullet Reloading, Bullet Reloaders
Brian Enos - Competition Shooting Books, Slide-Glide, DVDs & Reloading
Widener's Reloading and Shooting Supply INC
Specializing in Reloading Supplies and Equipment for Firearms - Sinclair International
Lee Precision, Inc. Reloading Tools and Equipment: Missing Page
Hornady.com - Deadly, Accurate, Dependable - Hornady Manufacturing, Inc
Midsouth Shooters Supply, Reloading, Air Guns, Optics, Muzzleloaders & Shooting Supplies
Shooting Supplies, Reloading, Gunsmithing, Hunting, Ammunition, Gun Parts & Rifle Scopes — MidwayUSA
Dpms firearms, panther arms, dpms panther arms, dpms, dpms firearms, dpms guns

Dies:
Home - Kempf Gun Shop
Dillon Precision: Reloaders, Reloading Equipment, Bullet Reloading, Bullet Reloaders
Brian Enos - Competition Shooting Books, Slide-Glide, DVDs & Reloading
Lee Precision, Inc. Reloading Tools and Equipment: Missing Page
Hornady.com - Deadly, Accurate, Dependable - Hornady Manufacturing, Inc
Natchez Shooters Supplies
Widener's Reloading and Shooting Supply INC
Specializing in Reloading Supplies and Equipment for Firearms - Sinclair International
Shooting Supplies, Reloading, Gunsmithing, Hunting, Ammunition, Gun Parts & Rifle Scopes — MidwayUSA
Dpms firearms, panther arms, dpms panther arms, dpms, dpms firearms, dpms guns

Misc. Tools and other places to spend your kids Inheritance
Dpms firearms, panther arms, dpms panther arms, dpms, dpms firearms, dpms guns
Berry's Manufacturing
Home - Kempf Gun Shop
Dillon Precision: Reloaders, Reloading Equipment, Bullet Reloading, Bullet Reloaders
Brian Enos - Competition Shooting Books, Slide-Glide, DVDs & Reloading
Lee Precision, Inc. Reloading Tools and Equipment
Hornady.com - Deadly, Accurate, Dependable - Hornady Manufacturing, Inc
Harbor Freight Tools - Quality Tools at the Lowest Prices
Widener's Reloading and Shooting Supply INC
Specializing in Reloading Supplies and Equipment for Firearms - Sinclair International
Natchez Shooters Supplies
Midsouth Shooters Supply, Reloading, Air Guns, Optics, Muzzleloaders & Shooting Supplies
J and J Products - Ammunition Cases.
Shooting Supplies, Reloading, Gunsmithing, Hunting, Ammunition, Gun Parts & Rifle Scopes — MidwayUSA
Gamaliel Shooting Supply - Rifle Scopes, Reloading Supplies, Gun Accessories, Guns



Here is an excellent source for tried and true load data on various powders and shell cases, etc.
Steve's Reloading Data Pages


Well team for what it worth that's (My Two Cents) and that's all I've got, I think I’ve laid out enough information for you to review and safely begin your quest in reloading.


Now for whatever it is worth, I had a Dillon 550 used it for years, sold it for more than I paid for it. The one time I broke it Dillon stood behind it and repaired it free of charge. I now have a Hornady LnL press, but have minimal experience with it.
__________________

"We are fast approaching the stage of the ultimate inversion:
the stage where the government is free to do anything it pleases,
while the citizens may act only by permission; which is the stage
of the darkest periods of human history, the stage of rule by brute force."
- Ayn Rand
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Old 03-23-2010, 06:41 PM
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Default Re: RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

Thanks for posting that Bob. I used to reload years ago. I need to unpack it and start again.
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Old 02-22-2012, 03:29 PM
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Default Re: RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

Well as someone who is starting to do it just recently I also found this handy. Now I got a heck of a deal on a pair of Lee Pro 1000 progressive loaders one set up for small pistol primers (38, 9mm etc) the other for large primers. I also got several of the listed manuals with it. However for those considering the Lee Pro 1000 loader I highly recommend you download the video play and videos from this guys site. I also suggest you forget the title name as it means nothing here other than this guy knows his stuff when it comes to the Lee Loader. http://www.sanfranciscoliberalwithagun.com/default.html
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Old 02-22-2012, 05:51 PM
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Default Re: RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

Been doing it since smokeless powder was invented. I call it handloading. All in the terminology and how one approaches the hobby.
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Old 02-23-2012, 10:58 AM
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Default Re: RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

I just finished up with 300 rounds of .220 Swift. Next will be .223 or .22 Hornet. Then if I have time, some 300 H&H magnums as well. I think I have enough 30/06 for a 600 yrd match this spring. For target rifles I keep the brass seperate for each rifle and neck size only. In calibers I only have one rifle in, I only neck size as well. This makes each casing a perfect fit to the chamber of that rifle. Case life, and accurace are improved. I also turn the walls of the neck for concentricity for the target ammo. At 600 yards and longer it makes a difference. For varmit ammo less so.

I think the most common mistake I see some doing is not trimming their cases often enough. This can cause high preasure as the bullet is pinched as it is chambered, to the point it is in effect stuck. Not a good situation, for sure.

Saved a ton of money reloading rifle and shot gun shells over the years. And I don't know why, but I almost enjoy it, from time to time. Let me knw if yoou need to know how to remove a stuck case from a sizing die. Been there, done that, several times!!

Regards, Kirk
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Old 02-23-2012, 11:08 AM
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Default Re: RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

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Originally Posted by 300 H and H View Post
I think the most common mistake I see some doing is not trimming their cases often enough. This can cause high preasure as the bullet is pinched as it is chambered, to the point it is in effect stuck. Not a good situation, for sure.

Regards, Kirk
Actually, one of the most common mistakes one can make, especially reloading for semi autos, is to make sure the sizing of the brass is within the tolerance allowed to the particular head space. A simple sizing gauge by LE Wilson will ensure the shoulder is pushed back enough but not too far. Very important.
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Old 02-23-2012, 11:17 AM
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Default Re: RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

I'll be loading some black powder (GOEX) 45 Colts this weekend at least a 300 rounds. I've been doing it with 12 ga brass shot shells for almost year now using the Lee Vintage Hand loaders. Pretty much old school method of doing it and really looking forward to doing some pistol ammo on the Lee Pro 1000. I will pick up a work bench tomorrow as that has been the hold up so far.
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Old 10-13-2013, 01:24 PM
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Default Re: RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

.308 round with a Lapua brass the question is whats the difference between the Federal 210 large riffle primer and a 210M primer and how will it perform differently from one another
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Old 10-13-2013, 03:59 PM
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Default Re: RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

The 210M is a magnum primer. It can be used but you need to work up the load. Best bet is to start about 10% below the recommended powder charge and work up, watching for over pressure signs. The magnum primers blow a bigger ignition spark/flame out of the primer cup so you may see pressure spikes at an earlier stage in the burn.
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Old 10-13-2013, 05:19 PM
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Default Re: RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

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The 210M is a magnum primer. It can be used but you need to work up the load. Best bet is to start about 10% below the recommended powder charge and work up, watching for over pressure signs. The magnum primers blow a bigger ignition spark/flame out of the primer cup so you may see pressure spikes at an earlier stage in the burn.
I think the 210M is the "Match" primer and the 215 is the "Magnum".

http://www.federalpremium.com/products/components.aspx

In theory the "Match" primers should be more consistent in spark/flame which is important in shooting matches where consistency is king. I'm not a good enough shooter to want to pay the "Match" premium. 210's work great for my .308 loads.
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Old 10-13-2013, 05:29 PM
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Default Re: RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

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Originally Posted by PBinWA View Post
I think the 210M is the "Match" primer and the 215 is the "Magnum".

http://www.federalpremium.com/products/components.aspx

In theory the "Match" primers should be more consistent in spark/flame which is important in shooting matches where consistency is king. I'm not a good enough shooter to want to pay the "Match" premium. 210's work great for my .308 loads.
I havent been able to buy the 210M anywhere in the last 10 months. So I will have to settle for the 210LR primers. Powder has been tough to get also.
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Old 10-13-2013, 05:59 PM
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Default Re: RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

Oops, sorry. PB is correct. I posted from memory while sitting on my iPhone in the car while the wife was in the store shopping.

Match primers will not affect the load.
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Old 10-13-2013, 06:14 PM
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Default Re: RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

You'll be fine shooting regular old 210's - especially if it's from an Armalite.
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Old 10-14-2013, 09:14 AM
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Default Re: RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

Just finished reloading my first lot of 50 BMG. Instead of paying up to six bucks a round, I should get it down to around three ... with pleasantly superior ballistics.

But no matter how you slice it, the 50 BMG is still a bit pricey. Then again, relative to the 223 or 308 say, a day at the range doesn't involve too many 750gr A-Max's going down range under 233gr of Hodgdon H50. BOOM!

It all kinda' washes out.
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Old 10-14-2013, 02:49 PM
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Default Re: RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

Question for the experts:

I understand that accuracy/precision of a firearm is maximized if the overall cartridge length is set so that the bullet just engages the rifling of the barrel. The specified overall length of a generic 50 BMG is 5.450 inches. The head spacing of the cartridge case in my boomer is perfect, but I have determined that a Hornady A-MAX bullet of a round chambered will just engage the rifling at 5.850 inches. If set to the specified length, the cartridge/case headspace is still perfect, but the Hornady bullet will be free-firing that 0.4 inch before actually engaging the rifling, hampering (I fear) the potential precision of the firearm.

So, do I dare increase the overall length to 5.850? Keep in mind that 50BMG bullets are actually 51 caliber, fired thru a 50 caliber barrel, and that different bullets have a slightly different shoulder profile.

OK, experts, what's the answer? I selfishly wish to not blow myself up sans your advice.
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Old 10-15-2013, 07:49 AM
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Default Re: RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

I'm not sure you will find an OAL Gauge for the 50BMG.

This link touches on some good points:

http://www.secondamendmentsupply.com...MatchPrep.html
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Old 10-15-2013, 08:20 AM
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Default Re: RELOADING rifle & handgun ammo, the basics for beginners...

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I'm not sure you will find an OAL Gauge for the 50BMG.

This link touches on some good points:

http://www.secondamendmentsupply.com...MatchPrep.html
Thanks, PB. I already have this info on file and guess I should have read it more carefully. But the answer is YES.

Quote:
Loading to your Max OAL places the bullet right up against the lands, where a number of shooters insist it belongs. It will also spike your pressure relative to a shorter OAL, so back off the powder charge and work back up when seating against the lands.
But any time someone loads up more than 200grs of powder it's best to be ... how do I say ... cautious.
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