Reloading kit in, advice wanted


January 14, 2009, 05:31 PM
Hello guys,

I finally received my 'Lee Turret press kit' and my .40S&W and 9mm Luger dies.

I am reloading for a few reasons.

1. I want to know how
2. I want to save on the cost of shooting
3. I want to have something to do when I can't shoot, but can't stop thinking about shooting.

...And I have some questions!

In terms of cost/quality ratio, what powder you guys would recommend for both of these loads?

Once again, what bullets would you guys recommend for someone trying to minimize cost and maximize quality?

Thanks in advance.


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January 14, 2009, 06:14 PM
Although it is true that the cost per cartridge of handloaders is well below that of a factory round, you must BEWARE THE DISEASE!:what:

Over a period of time, when you factor in the cost of the press and tools, the cost of brass and the cost of primers, powders and bullets, you are still loading a cartridge for less than factory. However, as you load more, you shoot more, you have uncontrolable urges to get more and finer weapons, you shoot more, you get better tools, you shoot more,, you get faster presses, OH did I mention you shoot more


Hodgdon Univeral, Alliant Unique and Bullseye, and Accurate AA5 will work very well in your weapons and a wide variety of other size cartridges.


January 14, 2009, 06:14 PM
As far as powders go, I experimented with several different powders when I started - buying them one pound at a time to test them. If you are shooting pistols, then I don't think the difference in powders costs is very important - I get about 1000 loads out of a lb of powder, so a $15/lb powder vs a $10/lb powder makes less than 1/2 of a penny difference per round.

My advice would be to look in a reloading manual, and try several of the different "classic" 45 ACP powders, and see which one you like the best. Then buy it 8 lbs at a time.

I can't help you with bullets - I shoot the 45 ACP's bigger brother (45 LC).


January 14, 2009, 06:28 PM
If you don't wanna cast, Missouri Bullet Co. and Berry's Bullets have served me well. If you can... cast. Rather than spend $30-$40/500 bullets, you can get a 5 gallon bucket of wheel weights for $20-$30 from a mom-n-pop tire store, and cast for pennies on the dollar. As far as powder in those calibers, I have done well with Unique, Clays, Blue Dot, Bullseye, and W231... Blue Dot for heavy loads, Unique for mid-level loads, and the others for powderpuff loads. My go-to powder is Unique, it meters well and fills cases well enough to be able to visually detect an under/over charge, and fills the spectrum pretty well.

January 14, 2009, 07:27 PM
Get some manuals and read--read--read. Then try different powders, buy some small qty's. Maybe try a friend that already reloads for small amounts of powder. Believe me you'll learn fast and I don't mean that in a bad way.

January 14, 2009, 08:22 PM
A Lyman manual is highly rated and must show 10-15 different powders for each bullet weight. It's an amazing book. I'd start there.

January 14, 2009, 10:17 PM
My shooting buddy asked me the same question a couple months ago (although he also wanted to reload .380 Auto). He wanted it to burn clean, meter well through his Lee Pro Auto-Disk measure, and have sufficient bulk to be easily seen in the case before seating the bullet.

My recommendation to him was Hodgdon Universal Clays. He's since found loads with it that work really well in his .40 S&W, 9mm, and .380, and is very happy with the choice.

As far as bullets, it's hard to beat Montana Gold for reasonably priced jacketed bullets. But if you want cheaper, then cast lead bullets are the ticket. I've had good luck with Tennessee Valley, Missouri, Mastercast, and Dardas.

January 15, 2009, 11:38 AM
Thanks very much for the great advise.

If I still have fingers to type with, I'll tell you all how it goes...:uhoh:...:D

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