Reloading bench questions


December 22, 2007, 01:37 PM
I plan on getting into reloading here pretty soon. I picked up The ABCs to Reloading and Speer's 13th Edition Reloading Manual, and I ordered a Lee Turret Press kit, dies, and other things to get started. The only thing I don't have is a suitable bench or table to mount my press on when I get it, and I was wondering where I might get a reasonably priced bench or table that would be up to the task. I'm not looking to spend a whole lot on it, and I live in an apartment, so space is a bit of an issue (can't be over 6 feet long), and the area I'd be reloading in is carpeted (I plan on covering it in plastic matting). Thanks alot.

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December 22, 2007, 01:42 PM
if u have a goodwill or salvation army has really heavy duty old desks on the cheap.

id say ur best bet is to assemble ur own bench, tho. it will likely be cheaper, sturdier, and u can get it set at a height that ur actually comfortable working at.

Eric F
December 22, 2007, 01:57 PM
do a search some place here on THR is a mega post on reloading benches.

Vern Humphrey
December 22, 2007, 03:40 PM
I have an old Army-issue dresser (from Army quarters) that I got at property disposal years ago. The drawers are full of bullets, reloading dies and so on, which makes it solid as can be, and the press and a couple of other things are bolted to the top surface. I think it cost me $5.00.

December 22, 2007, 03:45 PM
When I was setting up my reloading bench many moons ago, I had to put it in my extra bedroom--which was pretty small. My wife got me a workbench from Sears. PERFECT! Five drawers to hold stuff in, plus the cabinet with a shelf in it to hold more things. A stable, stout work area to bolt the press on, etc.

Here it is now, years later in my workshop (

And here is a sample shot I snapped after reading this thread to show some of the storage capabilities. (I now have a standup pantry style cabine to the left of the bench to hold all my empty brass, and cabinets to the right for loaded ammo, gun cleaning stuff, etc. But this bench was all I had for a long time and I never missed a beat. (

You can get workbenches like this just about anywhere and for pretty good deals. You can also move it when you move.


December 22, 2007, 05:02 PM
Thanks for the ideas guys.

December 23, 2007, 01:16 PM
This thread will give you so many ideas your head will hurt! I started reloading because of all these ideas!

December 23, 2007, 04:36 PM
A used Black and Decker Workmate will do if space is a serious issue. They appear in pawn shops and garge sales regularly. As daft as it sounds you can get one for $44.77 on Geez!
Most hardware stores(Home Depot, etc) sell work bench kits(usually 3' x 4' x 33") too. Don't buy one with a particle board (OSB) top though. They break on the first use. Says the voice of experience. Had to put a square foot of 1/4" steel plate on mine. It lives nicely in a one bed room apartment.

December 23, 2007, 07:37 PM
I was using an old computer desk, it was ok but it shook a bit. I bought a $20 wood bench on Craigslist and with a freinds help cut it down to size. It made with 4x4 and 1.5 inch top and wheels on one side to barrel it out to the garage when we have company. Not bad for $20, the wood alone would have been $75. So build your own and enlist a friend to help.

December 25, 2007, 08:20 AM
Sam's Club has a very nice work bench that is steel tubed frame/butcher block top and I think it runs about $160. There is also a cabinet that is seperate but goes with the bench but at a added cost (don't remember the price). The bench is 6' long and 26" deep.

December 25, 2007, 08:53 AM
TexasSkyhawk: How much flex do you get in that bench top? I sell those and have eyed them as possible for loading, but the top seems like it's not very reinforced, at least not enough for the leverage on a press. Did you add something under it to strengthen?

OP, I'm currently running my LoadMaster on the side of my L-shaped computer desk. I added a piece of 1x6 underneath to brace it up and located it nearest the leg of the desk to cut as much flex as possible. The flex I get now is from the fact the desk is particle board. Anything will work short term, as long as it's reinforced some.

December 25, 2007, 05:14 PM
Keeps the dust down. I have a small shelf below that is for the loading underway. As you can see, I have the powder and scale, and room for small tools. The scale is at eye level while sitting at the bench, and out of the way from sweeping hands and moving boxes. It's worked out very well. I used recycled upper kitchen cabinets for this bench. All my equipment, supplies, dies and items not in use for the current load remain up there. Everything else is in easy reach and organized while loading.

I particularly like the habit of having the powder being used out in view, and only it until the loading changes. This bench is made out of 2x6's cut in half for the base, topped with 1/2" ply. There are no back legs, only fronts. I fastened the shelf and top to the wall with 3" deck screws to the wall studs. This made it very solid. You then notice that I have a 1.5" top on top of that. This is an old solid core door I cut to fit with 3/4 thick, 1/5" wide edging. It was a door I replaced on the house this summer. I screwed this door to the other top 1/2 ply from the underside. Nice and solid. Actually, very solid. I have a vise to mount on the other end and have no fears of it being stout enough.

December 25, 2007, 07:29 PM
check out - and find the workbench section. You can customize the bench to however you want to make it. I didn't use the kit - but would have. My neighbor and I built mine out of steel with 3/4" plywood top and we bolted it to the studs in the 'man room' it does not move.

December 25, 2007, 09:23 PM
try Menard's or home depot you can usually find a precut assemble it yourself kit for less than $50. I bought a 6 footer for about 45 on sale.

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