Turret for .223?


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jhansman
September 19, 2008, 11:24 PM
I am beginning to make a boatload of .223 for my Saiga AK; my single-stage press is showing its age and the time spent is getting longer. Would a turret press speed things up for me much? Right now I am hand priming, funnel charging, manually seating bullets, and crimping. Once my brass is ready to roll, how much time might I save going the turret route? TIA.

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tokarev762
September 19, 2008, 11:46 PM
Curious also. I just loaded 350 5.56 rounds on RockChucker and I've been thinking of a Lee classic 4 holer myself.

jhansman
September 20, 2008, 12:18 AM
Yep, that's the press I'm eyeing as well. Just don't know if turrets are the choice for rifle ammo. Seems like a lot of handgun loaders use 'em though.

Sport45
September 20, 2008, 07:57 AM
I load .223 on a Lyman Spar-T. I'm not a good enough shooter to say if it causes any accuracy problems. I do have to lean into the handle pretty hard to completely size them to drop into my case gauge. (Using Lee RGB dies)

jhansman
September 20, 2008, 10:26 AM
I will probably continue to use my single stage press for my .223 bolt gun rounds. I am just thinking bulk ammo here; I have several thousand pieces of LC brass I want to get loaded and stored, so I'm hoping a turret press can shave off a chunk of time. Any AK or AR shooters out there who use a turret, and if so, is it saving you time and trouble?

kennedy
September 20, 2008, 07:48 PM
I use a lee turret press for my .223 ar, I have a three hole and need a 4 hole, so I use 2 turrets and it works just fine, I also use the lee auto disk for powder with the charging die, works consistant and its fast.

RustyFN
September 20, 2008, 08:03 PM
I load 223 on a classic turret. Once the case prep is done and I start to load I can load around 250 per hour.
Rusty

jhansman
September 21, 2008, 10:49 AM
Thanks to all for the replies. Turret loading it is!

bullseye308
September 21, 2008, 11:33 AM
I load 223 on a Loadmaster with no problems, I also use a Lee Reloader press to load them on if I have lots of time to kill or am just resizing a bunch of brass. Either will work just fine, just depends how fast you wanna gir-r-done.

everallm
September 21, 2008, 11:40 AM
Just started reloading 9mm and .223, expect to add .45 and .308 next year.

I use the 4 hole turret from Lee and an very happy.

One thing I find speeds the process for me, is to load the primers, via a Lee Auto Prime, off the turret. I then run about 200 an hour without killing myself.

Galil5.56
September 21, 2008, 11:42 AM
Any thought about a Dillon 550B? A lot faster than 4 strokes per round if that matters, plus you manually index it and can be used like a single stage if you like. I use my 550B for .223, and find it more than acceptable.

Yes, the price is higher, but should you absolutely hate it, getting back damn near what you paid for it is a nice benefit as is the warranty. Not a slam to LEE, as their classic turret seems to get pretty high marks, and many years ago I used a 3 hole turret that did OK.

BigJakeJ1s
September 21, 2008, 12:56 PM
The Hornady LNL AP progressive can also be used single-stage, by simply removing the dies you don't want to use (quick and easy with the LNL bushings). Then it will still auto-index, ejecting your processed brass for you. You could even use the optional case feeder while "single staging".

Andy

marchboom
September 21, 2008, 01:23 PM
Having used all types of presses, I would recommend getting a progressive press (Dillon or Hornady). All the turret will save you is a little time in changing the dies. If you are at the point where you think a single stage is too slow, then you are at the stage in life where you need a progressive. Believe me on this one. Once you try a progressive (don't buy cheap, either), you will know what I mean. And you can use it as a single stage if you want.

But whatever you buy, don't buy cheap. Get quality equipment. This stuff will last decades if properly maintained. Amortize that over your reloading lifetime (and your kid's lifetime) and it is very inexpensive to buy quality stuff that won't always need adjustment and parts breakage and add frustration to the process.

Griz44
September 21, 2008, 01:25 PM
I use a Loadmaster for my 30.06. The progressive cranks them out PDQ with good quality. .223 should be even faster. If you are shooting a lot, then some type of progressive is a big boost.

RustyFN
September 21, 2008, 01:46 PM
I just wanted to post this to give you an idea what it's like to load 223 on the classic turret. I load close to this and load around 250 per hour, maybe a little more. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zOpN9iYOyE8

Rusty

strat81
September 21, 2008, 02:03 PM
I load .223 and 7.62x39 on my Lee Classic Turret. It's fast enough for me. That is, I wouldn't be able to afford the components if I could reload faster. :)

counterclockwise
September 21, 2008, 11:04 PM
I use an RCBS turret and think it does save a little time over single stage. Die set up, sizer/decap, seater/crimp, and for 1X mil reloads the RCBS swage can be left in the turret table without going through set up again for each process.

The downside is keeping the turret table from tilting under high ram pressures. Some other turret press designs may minimize the tilt problem.

SSN Vet
September 22, 2008, 03:04 PM
I load .223 and 7.62x39 on my Lee Classic Turret. It's fast enough for me. That is, I wouldn't be able to afford the components if I could reload faster.

that's the same for me....

How fast?

never timed myself, but case prep is still by far the longest leg .....

strat81
September 22, 2008, 03:13 PM
Not including prep and case sizing, if I boogie I can do around 130-150 rifle rounds per minute. Pistol, I'm at 175.

If you plan on reloading .223, you'll spend plenty of time removing primer crimp. Also, buy an RCBS X-Die (no need to get small base). The X-Die helps prevent case stretch during sizing thus allowing you to skip trimming. For trimming on the cheap and fast, get a Possum Hollow Quick Case Trimmer.

highlander 5
September 22, 2008, 03:39 PM
I think we are mixing apples and oranges here. When you say turret I think of a press that the shell holder is stationary and the die are rotated above is a circular die holder as in the Lyman Spar T press or are you talking a PROGRESSIVE press such as the LnL or Dillon 550/650? If it's the latter the LnL or either of the Dillon presses are the way to go. I load 223 on my 650 and it's pretty accurate as far as I can tell. Out of my Ruger M77 MK II the best group I've sho is 3/8" at 100 yds. 3/4"-1" the norm on my better days.

SSN Vet
September 22, 2008, 04:04 PM
mixing apples and oranges

Turret with manual advance = apple

Progressive = orange

Turret with auto advance = Peach :)

The press he mentioned indexes the 4-hole die head automatically with each stroke of the ram, so you can completely load one case from a to z (as with a progressive) but unlike a progresive you're only performing one operation at a time. So instead of getting a completely loaded cartridge w/ every pull, you get one with every four pulls (as with a single stage), but you only load the case onto the press one time and don't have to fiddle with your die set up once you have them dialled in

bullseye308
September 22, 2008, 05:26 PM
"Not including prep and case sizing, if I boogie I can do around 130-150 rifle rounds per minute. Pistol, I'm at 175." :what::what::what:
Is there a trick to that or is it a secret? Maybe I could borrow your press for an hour as mine isn't quite that fast. J/K

DaveInFloweryBranchGA
September 22, 2008, 05:52 PM
I'm using the Lee Classic Turret and feel strongly it obsoletes any other turret press design out there.

If you're using a Lee Classic Turret, you should be able to get up around 200 rounds per hour pretty easily. I've been able to get up to 300 an hour, but I had to work pretty hard to do so.

The critical part of the operation is realizing one needs to use the auto advance capability, the Pro Auto Disk, Auto Disk Riser and Safety Prime setup to reach these speeds. For rifle and extruded powders, I swap out the Lee die for a Hornady case activated powder drop and use an RCBS Uniflow for my automated powder drops.

For the vast majority of reloaders/shooters, the Lee Classic Turret and Lee Classic Cast single stage combination is all the presses they will ever need. If I hadn't already had a Hornady LnL when I bought my classics, I'd have never needed the LnL for my reloading.

One has to be a very high volume shooter or have very little time to reload to need a genuine progressive press. Additionally, I've found the slower pace of the Lee Classic Turret to be more satisfying when I'm reloading low to medium volume reloading and seldom use my LnL unless I'm making a huge batch load of a couple thousand rounds for a single cartridge I'm extremely familiar with.

Regards,

Dave

strat81
September 22, 2008, 06:01 PM
s there a trick to that or is it a secret? Maybe I could borrow your press for an hour as mine isn't quite that fast.
This assumes that EVERYTHING is set up and that nothing jams, goes wrong, runs out, etc.

Searching for a dropped primer for 10 minutes slows things down.

Pistol is faster for me, I think because I don't let the press "wait" for the powder charge to drop and seating bullets is easier compared to rifle.

Frankl03
September 22, 2008, 10:51 PM
I load 223 on a Lee Classic 4 hole turret. I think its great and it didn't cost anywhere close to a Dillion 550. I got mine in a package deal from Cabelas (about $160). You can get package deals from other places as well. I also use a Lee single stage for decapping and swaging.

You can't go wrong with a Less Classic turret inmo.

12Bravo20
September 30, 2008, 10:29 AM
Frankl, I use the same setup for .223. I full length resize for my AR and only neck size for my H&R Handi Rifle. I like the Lee 4 hole turret press, .223 is the only rifle round that I have tried reloading with it.

jhansman
September 30, 2008, 05:44 PM
Well, after reading up as much as I could, I've decided instead to go with the Lee Breech Lock Challenger. Since it takes Lee's Safety Prime system, and I charge my cases with a Lee dipper and funnel, I can seat my bullets and factory crimp with a quick change of dies this press allows. Same goes for my handgun rounds, so for me the turret would actually be overkill. Thanks to those who responded.

SSN Vet
October 2, 2008, 11:05 AM
I also use a Lee single stage for decapping and swaging.

I really wanted (want:)) the Lee classic cast single stage to supplement my Classic Cast 4 hole Turret for lead bullet swaging, rifle case belling (for cast) stand alone de-priming, and primer pocket swaging.

But I wound up just plopping down $8 for another spare turret and loaded all of these dies on it.

For the vast majority of reloaders/shooters, the Lee Classic Turret and Lee Classic Cast single stage combination is all the presses they will ever need.

Though I'd love to sip blue kool-aide with one of those pretty Dillion models, practical reality says I have to agree with Dave's statement.

Loading 50 rounds is a big reloading session for me. That would take all of 5 minutes on a 650. Then what would I do for the rest of the evening?

chipperi
October 2, 2008, 04:36 PM
:what:I charge my cases with a Lee dipper and funnel:what:

Please tell me you use a scale as well! The first thing I do is toss that little yellow dipper.

No one has mentioned the Lyman T-Mag I have used it for about 14 years now and have no regrets, its a right sturdy press. As a matter of fact you can buy the whole kit that has the press,scale,case trimmer, lube pad, lube, powder measure, and loadbook for about 300 bucks.

DaveInFloweryBranchGA
October 2, 2008, 04:56 PM
The Lee dippers are no different than the Lee Pro Auto Disk. They've both volume based. Once you've taken a dipper, filled it with a specific powder, measured it and recorded the measurement, you can use that dipper, as long as you're consistent about how you fill it, just as you would any other volume measurement. They work great, just ask Skeeter Skelton and some of those other old time shooters.

Regards,

Dave

RustyFN
October 2, 2008, 05:32 PM
Yep what Dave said. I have talked to many people that have used the dippers for years without any problems. I do agree that you need a scale to verify the charge. The breech lock press should work great as long as you aren't trying to feed a AR 15. If you are then you would want to move up to the classic turret press. That will take you from 50 rounds per hour up to around 250 rounds per hour. I load 250 RPH on my classic at a comfortable pace.
Rusty

PCFlorida
October 2, 2008, 05:48 PM
Not including prep and case sizing, if I boogie I can do around 130-150 rifle rounds per minute. Pistol, I'm at 175.

A minute?

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