need opinions on a reloading kit before i buy it


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gpwelding1
November 28, 2010, 08:22 PM
i have found a RCBS ROCK CHUCKER SUPREME MASTER RELOADING KIT for $299.99 new at a local gun shop.kit includes every thing needed to start except powder,primers,bullets and die's.this is my first kit,so i know nothing about the diffrent brands of reloaders .i need your opinions in whether RCBS is dependable and a good quality reloader.and if its a good deal.:confused:

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esheato
November 28, 2010, 08:36 PM
Dependable? Oh yes.

Quality? Definitely.

Let me also add they have amazing customer service.

As far as the price, I have no idea.

Most beginner kits are pretty similar. Really depends on what color you want to decorate your garage. ;) (RCBS and Redding are green, Hornady and Lee are red, Dillon is blue, etc).

I would suggest a load manual if it doesn't come with one.

Waldog
November 28, 2010, 08:43 PM
Awesome setup! They are quality tools that will last a lifetime. I have a RCBS Model A2 press that is about 60 years old that was my Dad's. I still use it!

dc.fireman
November 28, 2010, 08:51 PM
Is it available online? or in a brick & mortar store?

The reason I ask is, if it's online, posting a link might help everyone else here to evaluate what it comes with, and doesn't come with. If it's a local store deal, post the components you remember/know, and everyone can fill you in on what else you might need, and also what you might want. A wise person on this forum once remarked that "You can make this as simple or complex a hobby as you want to", and I've pretty much come to accept that as the gospel truth ( as I continue to add various tools and gadgets to my cave!)

The necessities are posted in a sticky at the top of the forum. I think the majority of the folks here would recommend either buying or checking out from the library a copy of "The ABC's of Reloading". It will guide you in not only what you need, but why you need it, and why you perform certain steps, in certain order.

If I could add one book to the list, it would be "The Precision Shooting Reloading Guide".

ENjoy!

-tc

hcso617
November 28, 2010, 10:04 PM
Not to take over the OP's thread, D.C. here is a link to the kit from Midway. I have posted a thread recently about starting to reload and this kit was highly recommended.

http://www.midwayusa.com/viewproduct/?productnumber=646599

CHALK22
November 28, 2010, 10:37 PM
RCBS is great stuff, and I have a few friends that use it. I however think there are brands out there that are just as good, for less money. Personally, I got my Lee startup kit, .223, and 9mm die sets, and a couple more little things for about $209 shipped. I got it all off *gasp* eBay. I found a great seller with 100% feedback, and never looked back. I have made two more orders from them since then.

http://stores.ebay.com/the4sportsmen <-- give 'em a look.

Also, manuals, manuals, manual. I get quie a few off Amazon.com
http://www.amazon.com/Abcs-Reloading-Definitive-Novice-Expert/dp/0896896099/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1291003281&sr=8-1

TH3180
November 28, 2010, 10:46 PM
That is the kit I got a little over a month ago. I love it, simple as that. I also am a newbie when it comes to reloading.

rondog
November 28, 2010, 10:53 PM
I'm sure it'll do dandy for you, especially with rifle ammo. But if you're wanting to load a lot of pistol rounds, you'll most likely find yourself wanting a turret or progressive press in the near future. I do rifles on my turret, but tend to do a lot of them single-stage style. But pistol rounds get cranked out as fast as I can go. I'd scare myself with a progressive, I don't shoot up the ammo that I can load now with my Lee Turret. With a Dillon I'd end up with more ammo than I could shoot in a lifetime. Wife already thinks I'm nuts.

gpwelding1
November 28, 2010, 11:46 PM
A rock chucker single stage press,505 scale,uniflow powder measurer,speer reloading manual,hand priming tool with large and small priming plugs,folding hex key set,universal case loading block,case lube kit,powder funnel,chamfer and deburring tool.

gpwelding1
November 29, 2010, 12:18 AM
i dont have a garage or shop.will it be safe for me to convert one of our spare rooms into a reloading room?we dont smoke in the house,and every thing is total electric.

Tim the student
November 29, 2010, 12:30 AM
I have one, and I like it quite a bit. People that have other brands like them too, FWIW. All the companies seem to have great service.

Not sure on the price - I think I just saw one for 279 or thereabouts. I don't recall from where though. Maybe Midsouth or Natchez. ETA: price seems good for a local store.

ETA: Yes, provided you follow the rules, reloading is safe indoors. If you have young kids, it may be wise to lock that door, just in case they decide to see what spent primers taste like.

Hey_Allen
November 29, 2010, 06:10 AM
Regarding the press, as already said, RCBS makes good stuff, as do many others.

On the price, I'd consider the $20-40 premium for a local purchase a wash, considering shipping, and the good will with the shop that you buy it from, if it's a local store where you plan on picking their brains for tips occasionally.

ironhead7544
November 29, 2010, 07:42 AM
For new guys I recommend the Lee Turret. Easy to learn on and can put out a fair amount of ammo quickly. You can use it as a single stage to learn the process. Probably best to get a manual first and study it. They are all good but the Lyman is best for a new guy, IMHO. You cant go wrong with the RCBS stuff either. I used a single stage for many years and still have the Rock Chucker I bought in 1972. One thing I did not see with the kit was a case trimmer. Lee has an inexpensive one that works OK.

JimKirk
November 29, 2010, 08:15 AM
The RCBS stuff is good stuff... had that same basic setup since 1969.

Jimmy K

rondog
November 29, 2010, 11:35 AM
heres another big consern i have

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

i dont have a garage or shop.will it be safe for me to convert one of our spare rooms into a reloading room?we dont smoke in the house,and every thing is total electric.


Fear not. The biggest danger is you'll have a powder measure full of powder, but setting fire to it would take a serious effort. Primers very rarely go off by accident, never happened to me and I've literally crushed quite a few of them by getting in a hurry. Keep the powder jug lid on, no smoking or open flames nearby, you'll be fine.

Gunpowder doesn't explode either, it just burns real fast. Put some in a pile in a metal pie pan sometime and light it with a match, it's kind of anti-climactic really. Black powder and Pyrodex is a different story though.

I second the cautions about kids, don't leave powder & primers out where they can get to them. Kids will hit primers with hammers, and experiment with gunpowder and fire....bad juju. My grandson decided to "help me out" once and made some .45 rounds for me when I wasn't in the room. But I had the powder measure turned off, so a couple of rounds had no powder in them. Two squibs and two ruined 1911 barrels later, I figured it out. Now I keep a bike lock cable wrapped around the press when it's set up.

I also recommend the Lee Classic Cast Turret, that's what I use and it's great! I load many different calibers though, and being able to have all my dies setup in turrets for quick changes is very handy. The press you're looking at, you can only use one die at a time and only do one operation at a time. This is perfectly fine if you're after precision rifle ammo, or only want to do small quantities. But it's a slow way to go for larger quantities. Even if you get a Dillon progessive later on, you'll always have a use for the single-stage press, trust me!

Beware that reloading can be just as addictive as shooting itself! It doesn't take much space to do it either, a spare room will be dandy. Most important is comfort and good lighting, stay away from breezes (they'll mess with your scales), and some storage space is very nice. I use an old 4-drawer filing cabinet that locks, you can put a LOT of stuff in one of those! And I'm a redneck, I can re-use just about any discarded crap for shelving or storage. Here's my little corner "gun shop".

http://i18.photobucket.com/albums/b150/rinselman/guns/gun%20and%20reloading%20benches/DSCN3349.jpg

rfwobbly
November 29, 2010, 01:08 PM
Mr Welding -

I usually try to avoid naming or recommending press brands, but since you've already spotted this one locally, I have to tell you the RCBS is truly one of the better kits. You can get a cheaper press kit, but over the next 10 years you'll be replacing all the plastic accessories that come with those type kits. So over time you actually end up spending more when you buy the lower cost kit.

If you're convinced that reloading is for you, then you probably can't do better than the Rock Chucker for several reasons...
• As others have said, you'll be using that setup for the next 25+ years. The press is that robust and comes with the highest grade accessories possible. They'll be no costly upgrades down the road. I'm still using a 1973 Uniflow and 5-0-5 scale.
• By buying locally your dealer can steer you to other reloaders that can mentor you. Reloading is not "hard" but there are several places where you need to know "tricks" that you can best learn by seeing. So a "reloading buddy" is very handy. And then, you'll always need something on Sunday evening after all the stores close. It never fails.

All the best.

Clark
November 29, 2010, 01:30 PM
I got a rockchucker kit 10 years ago.

I still use the scale, powder measure, and chamfering tool.

The rest of the stuff gathers dust.

TX expat
November 29, 2010, 03:35 PM
I recently purchased the same kit and I don't have any complaints, but I'm a noob to reloading so that probably isn't saying much :)

One thing I will say is that Cabela's has that same kit on sale for $269

http://www.cabelas.com/product/Shooting/Reloading/Presses-Dies|/pc/104792580/c/104761080/sc/104516280/RCBS-RC-Supreme-Master-Reloading-Kit/728426.uts?destination=%2Fcatalog%2Fbrowse%2Fshooting-reloading-presses-dies%2F_%2FN-1100195%2FNs-CATEGORY_SEQ_104516280 (http://www.cabelas.com/product/Shooting/Reloading/Presses-Dies%7C/pc/104792580/c/104761080/sc/104516280/RCBS-RC-Supreme-Master-Reloading-Kit/728426.uts?destination=%2Fcatalog%2Fbrowse%2Fshooting-reloading-presses-dies%2F_%2FN-1100195%2FNs-CATEGORY_SEQ_104516280)

velocette
November 29, 2010, 04:16 PM
My Rockchuck kit hails from about 30 years ago. I've never had to replace a part, any part, ever. It has reloaded: .32acp, 380acp, 9mm Luger, .38s spl, .357 S&W Mag, 40 S&W, .45acp, .45 Colt, .222 rem, .308 Win, .30-06 Spr & 8mm Mauser (7.92). I might'a forgotten one or two, but you get the picture.

Roger

bds
November 29, 2010, 09:05 PM
Santa is bringing one for Christmas (http://www.midwayusa.com/viewProduct/?productNumber=513567) to reload .223 and .308. :D

http://media.midwayusa.com/ProductImages/Large/513/513567.jpg

TH3180
November 29, 2010, 09:10 PM
Santa is bringing one for Christmas (http://www.midwayusa.com/viewProduct/?productNumber=513567) to reload .223 and .308. :D

http://media.midwayusa.com/ProductImages/Large/513/513567.jpg
Wait a darn minute. How do you know what santa is bringing you for Christmas? Did you sleep with one of his elfs?

Hondo 60
November 29, 2010, 09:18 PM
Looks like a great starting kit.

A calipers isn't included. You absolutely want one to check the Over All Length (OAL).

bds
November 29, 2010, 09:53 PM
Wait a darn minute. How do you know what santa is bringing you for Christmas? Did you sleep with one of his elfs?
I am building a "woman cave" for my wife for Christmas and I guess it earned enough "good boy" credit! :D It's framed, sided and roofed.
Rudolph hinted that if I get the room wired, insulated, drywalled, and painted by Christmas, Santa may toss in a Hornady LNL AP too! :eek:

As to OP, it is a great kit. I highly recommend it.

Magoo
November 29, 2010, 10:20 PM
Ya ain't responded yet GP (?). Unless you found contrary advise somewhere else I'm guessing you're either on your way back from Anderson or sitting in a corner counting pennies :neener:.
If you do head over to Grady's give me a shout. I want to ask you a favor of scouting their powder selection for me. Maybe even picking up a pound for me if you're going to combine trips and swing through here on your drive.

ETA: bds- best of luck on that LNL. I'm really happy with mine. And the red would be so "seasonal", how could she not?!?

bds
November 29, 2010, 10:44 PM
You are right, green and red are the perfect seasonal colors.

fredflyer
November 30, 2010, 05:02 AM
I have a couple of friends that are recommending Dillon. But I'm also looking at Hornady. I want to get one system set up and keep it for decades. I will want to load hundreds of rounds of 9mm, .308, 7.62x39, plus .380, 30-06 and possibly several others. So my current interests are the Hornady "Lock-n-Load" progressive and the Dillon 550. I haven't seen any "starter kits" that include either of those. I don't have a mental problem with starting with an "advanced" system. Which should I choose?

Tim the student
November 30, 2010, 06:55 AM
Fred -

Brian Enos has a "kit" made up for people that have never reloaded before for the Dillon. He calls it an "EZ Buy Package".

People do start out with progressives, but there must be a reason you very seldom see them recommended as a first press. Read a book or three yet?

fredflyer
November 30, 2010, 10:33 AM
Just started ABC's of Reloading. First book.

doorman
November 30, 2010, 11:30 AM
This is the same kit I purchased 3 years ago. You will want to purchase a decent caliper, case gauges for what ever rifle cartidges you will reload and case trimmer for bottleneck cases. These do not come with the kit.

Landric
November 30, 2010, 11:53 AM
I bought the same kit in 1994. At the time it came with a case trimmer, but my understanding is that the current kit does not. I still use everything that came in the kit, except the press. I replaced the Rock Chucker II that came with my kit with a Lee Classic Cast. Its just as tough as the RC in my experience and it has both a better primer catcher and on press priming system.

I load the huge majority of my ammunition (mostly handgun + .223) on a Lee Classic Turret, I load smaller volume rifle on the Lee Classic Cast, smaller volume handgun on the Lee Breech Lock Challenger, and .45 ACP on a Dillon Square Deal B. Current Lee press designs are just as good as the more expensive offerings, I just wish they would offer a progressive based on the Classic Turret. For a progressive setup one can't go wrong with either the Lock N Load or one of the Dillons. If I were going to get a progressive for more than just one handgun cartridge, I would probably buy the Lock N Load.

ranger335v
November 30, 2010, 04:46 PM
I've been reloading since '65. Started with, and still have, a Lyman 5 station turret, got a Herter's #3 in early 70s, a Rock Chucker in '87, two of Lee's very small "Reloader" and one of their "Hand" presses about '90. They all work just fine, I've also used/helped several other people load on a variety of other presses. Bottom line, I know of NO press that won't last "forever" if it's taken care of and used properly, but mechanical klutzes are less likely to damage massive cast iron types. (I've seen a couple of photos of the top strap on RCs that were broken, so even they aren't fool-proof!) All said, that kit is as good as any kit.

Toss that "case lube pad" tho, pads soon get grungy and are then prone to leave grit on your lubed cases and that leads to scratched dies. Use either Redding's "Imperial" Case lube or Hornady's excellant "Unique". Both are soft waxes that should be lightly applied with clean finger tips as you pick each case up for sizing.

You will need to add both dies and shell holders for each cartridge you load for. May as well get a "stuck case remover" and an impact type bullet puller too. They are sorta like a reloader's erasure and everyone eventually needs them both.

Ridgway
December 1, 2010, 12:15 PM
"The Engine could still smile...It seemed to scare them"- Felix

Wow. I haven't read 'Armor' since High School. I wonder if I can find my copy somewhere...

918v
December 1, 2010, 12:37 PM
Don't buy kits. They have some of the stuff you like and alot of crap you don't need. Each manufacturer makes a tool that you will like more than another. Assemble your own kit.

TX expat
December 1, 2010, 01:44 PM
Don't buy kits. They have some of the stuff you like and alot of crap you don't need. Each manufacturer makes a tool that you will like more than another. Assemble your own kit.
Except how would you know which tools you will like over others without trying them?

TH3180
December 1, 2010, 06:25 PM
I'm glad I got the kit. Being new it would be really hard deciding what to buy and not buy. I am loading 9mm, so there are only a few things I am not using right now.

dc.fireman
December 1, 2010, 08:20 PM
Regarding the press, as already said, RCBS makes good stuff, as do many others.

On the price, I'd consider the $20-40 premium for a local purchase a wash, considering shipping, and the good will with the shop that you buy it from, if it's a local store where you plan on picking their brains for tips occasionally.
Thats pretty good advice right there. I don't have anything against any of the online retailers whatsoever - evidenced by the small fortune my wife is sure I send them every year; but helping to support the local mom & pop shops, will help you out later on - like when you need one pound of some oddball powder for a certain load, and you don't feel like paying the hazmat fee... or shipping. Get that kit, and some calipers, and you'll be fairly happy with it.

TH3180
December 1, 2010, 08:38 PM
Thats pretty good advice right there. I don't have anything against any of the online retailers whatsoever - evidenced by the small fortune my wife is sure I send them every year; but helping to support the local mom & pop shops, will help you out later on - like when you need one pound of some oddball powder for a certain load, and you don't feel like paying the hazmat fee... or shipping. Get that kit, and some calipers, and you'll be fairly happy with it.
I use the 10% rule. If I can get it within 10% of what I would pay online with shipping. Then I will buy it from a locally owned store. Same rule with buying stuff from locally owned stores over the big box stores.

918v
December 1, 2010, 11:10 PM
Except how would you know which tools you will like over others without trying them?

You ask people. You try to handle them in the store. Buy from places where you can return stuff.

Clark
December 3, 2010, 03:21 AM
Do a search for 918V posts on the internet.

My shpeal:
This is what I still use:
1) Forster Co-ax press
2) Quickload software.
3) Redding imperial die wax.
4) RCBS 5-0-5 scale
5) RCBS Uniflow powder measure
6) RCBS Inside outside neck chamfer
7) Forster case trimmer
8) MTM funnel
9) Wilson Case gauge
10) Sinclair concentricity gauge
11) Lyman Moly coating kit
12) Vibrators, ultra sound, and stainless steel media in a tumbler
13) Forster priming tool
14) Lee Collet neck dies
15) Forster FL dies
16) Forster seating dies
17) Dial calipers
18) Enco set of pin gauges .0610" to .2500"
19) Enco set of pin gauges .2510" - .5000"
20) Optivisor magnifier headset
21) Dillon Super Swage 600 military crimp remover
22) Lux lamp magnifier
23) Bullets, brass, primers, and powder
24) Berry's bullets plastic ammo boxes
25) 3M Post-its for labeling.
26) Forster headspace go-gauge

Hey_Allen
December 3, 2010, 09:21 AM
Heh, the list of stuff/brands used could get amusing for some of us...

Two RCBS Rock Chucker presses (one retrofitted with a Hornady LnL adapter)
Hornady LnL AP
assorted Lee, RCBS, and Redding dies, as well as a few inherited unknown brands.
Redding powder measure
RCBS 505 scale, Lyman #2 scale (old oil-dampened one!)
Wilson case gauges and case trimmers
Frankford Arsenal (Midway USA) vibe tumbler and digital caliper
Harbor Freight digital caliper, apparently identical in all but color to the FA one, just cheaper and raided from my car tool box...
RCBS kinetic bullet puller
Hornady collet bullet puller


As both of these lists show, you'll collect stuff over time as you play with the hobby, play with new things that you stumble across or deals that fall into your lap.
The various brands all have their good points, and even if you don't like something in the long run, there's always the used market to possibly send it down the line to another owner.

My personal take, buy a book like the ABC's, read lots here and in the book. Buy a kit for the nice package, and round it out with an item or two, such as the calipers, and load lots to find out what you like, what tools you use, and never quit reading to learn more from others who have even more time on their hands to be finding neat tricks, or proving that yes, you can put too much powder in that there case... (It's far cheaper to let someone else prove it for you, than to do it yourself! :p )

262runner
December 3, 2010, 11:33 AM
A few years ago I deceided to reload. I read a few books, went online and then bought a Dillon 550 as my first press. I was a little unsure at first but after taking my time and watching every station perform it's function it's not a big deal, we're not cracking the atom here. I will say that i put a light next to the bullet seating station to make sure that there is powder in there before the bullet is placed on the case.

I'm sure all the name brand presses will give you years of service and thousands of quality rounds. Enjoy your new addiction.....

fredflyer
December 8, 2010, 05:15 AM
MANY THANK YOUs to all who have responded! Especially dc.fireman, Clark, Hey Allen, 262 runner, and I'm sure I missed someone. The listings of what y'all used were very enlightening! I think I will probably start with a Hornady LnL press with a few of the extras (like the harbour freight digital caliper). If I find a truly "local" mentor that uses Dillon, I may follow. I'm looking at this as something I will be doing for the rest of my life; a slightly longer "learning curve" is not a problem. I "buy local" every chance I get, even with a "wally-world" in town. The local, home town service way more than makes up for any cost savings. Unfortunately, since I live in N CA, "local" could probably mean Reno. Anyone that knows of a knowledgeable dealer that has equipment in stock and training available in the "greater Sacramento area", please let me know! There are also a few gun ranges around that may know of reloader(s). I'll try that, too. Thanks again to all y'all!!!

Hey_Allen
December 8, 2010, 07:55 AM
I'm glad to have been of some small assistance, and hope you enjoy the new hobby.

As to finding a mentor, as you said, asking at the range masters is a likely route to find some local reloaders. The local ranges here all vary in how they regard reloading, but the one that frowns on it I just don't bother using. The others all either just accept it, or actively support it, and seem happy to talk loading with newcomers or old timers.

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