hollywood Reloading Press


April 1, 2011, 03:20 PM
There is a Hollywood reloading press on Gun Broker, is it worth the price? Are they good presses, I am looking for a 50 bmg Press any help would help

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April 1, 2011, 04:33 PM
Seeing as no one has replied, I'll share what VERY little I know. I've never seen one in person but have heard people bash them pretty hard. On the other hand, I believe there is a member of this forum that has a bench full of them and has posted pics.
They do look very stout and capable.
I know it's not much but it's all I got. Maybe someone else will chime in now :)

Keep your head low and your powder dry.

April 1, 2011, 04:39 PM
I learned to reload on a Hollywood press, not the model(s) shown on GB way back in the Middle Ages. They were excellent heavy duty presses and very well made. However they ued a proprietary scew in shell holder that only fit the Hollywood press. I believe the press took a strange shapped primer punch also. Bear in mind these presses are over 45+ years old and replacement parts may be difficult to get and the manufacturer has been out of business for many years. Frankly I would look elsewhere unless you like antiques.

April 1, 2011, 06:10 PM
I have two Hollywood Sr. presses. The smaller one I bought used in 1963 and still use it today, along with my other presses. The larger one was purchased used about 6 months ago and I use it to swage bullets.

Hollywood Gunshop made several different presses, both from cast steel and cast aluminum. They do use a unique shell holder, but both CH and RCBS make an adaptor which accepts regular shell holders. The priming arms are also unique, and only a Hollywood priming arm will work on them. They can be fabricated by a machine shop, but they are still occasionally available on the auction sites.

The two Hollywood turret presses I found on gunbroker.com both looked like aluminum presses. While they may be up to loading .50 BMG, I don't think I'd want to. Dillon is making a .50 BMG press and I know RCBS used to, but don't know if they still catalog it. I would rather go with a press specifically built for loading that caliber, such as my larger Hollywood Sr., made from cast steel and with the reinforcement bar on the front.

Hope this helps.


Kevin Rohrer
April 1, 2011, 08:22 PM
I know a fair amount about these as I own a Senior, Senior Turret, and three Universals.

There are two Universals on Gunbroker:

1. The one with the chrome turret is a Universal Model-B and is supposedly one of 100 and is very old. I own one of those with a longer handle. The one in the picture *can't* be used to load .50BMG as the die stations are all 7/8x14.

2. The other one is a Universal Model-III made of **aluminum**, and although it has four die stations large enough to load .50BMG, I wouldn't trust it. Those larger stations were probably used to load shotgun shells.


On Ebay, there is a Model-A in poor condition that won't load .50BMG as the die stations look to be too small.

However, there is also a Senior Turret with all its die stations big enough for .50BMG (1 1/2x12). I believe CH/4D sells bushings that let you use regular dies in the larger stations, also.

The price the guy wants is a bit high, but not unreasonable. I'd guess in today's market it's worth $800 as you can load both regular and Big Boy rounds; if it only had the capability to load regular rounds I'd put the value at $700. It is a newer one and complete. With the tie rod in place, it will easily load .50BMG and it looks like it only lacks the dies.

Here is the link:


And nothing against Loadedround, but these presses are easily the equal of anything made today. Steel will always outdo aluminum. Universal shellholders can be had from CH/4D as well as ebay for not much money. Reloaderfred also knows how good these are.

Let me know if I can be of any other assistance.

Postscript: I see that it includes free shipping. As this press weighs 42lbs, you are saving an additional $50. It needs to be insured and packed correctly, otherwise the handle will get lost in shipment.

Kevin Rohrer
April 2, 2011, 07:06 AM
The priming arms are also unique, and only a Hollywood priming arm will work on them.

Reloaderfred: There is always an exception. In this case Dunbar primer arms can be used on Hollywoods and vice versa. Although of a slightly different design, they are threaded the same and the Dunbars are about the same length as the arm for the Senior, which means they should work on the Senior but not the Universal (threads aren't long enough). I also know they work as both makes use the same shellholder and H-ram.

I'll double-check when I get home today and will post a picture or three here.

April 2, 2011, 10:58 AM

I've never run across a Dunbar priming arm, though I've got some of what I believe are Dunbar shell holders. A picture of one would be a great help, though I've got plenty of priming arms for my two Hollywood presses.


Kevin Rohrer
April 2, 2011, 09:24 PM
Here are the four different primer arms. They are interchangable as follows:

The Hollywood Senior primer arm will also work in the Hollywood Senior Turret and Dunbar.

The Senior Turret arm will work in the Senior and Dunbar.

The Dunbar will work in the Senior and Senior Turret.

The Universal arm also works in the Senior Turret.


Fred: I'd be interested in seeing a Dunbar shellholder.

Kevin Rohrer
April 3, 2011, 08:10 AM
Fred: I believe the Senior Turret arm pictured above is also designed to work w/ your newer, tall Senior. Am guessing your press is the same height as my Senior Turret.

April 3, 2011, 10:02 AM

I believe the Universal would probably work fine on my taller Senior press, but the regular Senior priming punches work well, too.

I'll have to e-mail you a picture of what I believe is a Dunbar shell holder, since I've never figured out how to post pictures to forums. I'm a shooter and reloader, not a computer person.....



Kevin Rohrer
April 3, 2011, 12:24 PM
since I've never figured out how to post pictures to forums.

It's easier than you think.

1. Get a free account at Photobucket.


2. Upload your pics to it. The site allows you to have folders for different types of pics (e.g. Reloading, dogs, etc)

3. Photobucket helps you by making the Copy to Windows Clipboard real easy by clicking on the photo link and then your Pasting it in here using the Insert Image icon above this message window.

April 3, 2011, 10:05 PM
Thanks, Kevin. I'll have to give it a try.

There is a Hollywood Senior press listed in the "Swappin & Sellin" section of the castboolits forum right now. From the pictures, it's in really good shape, but missing the priming punches. It has an RCBS universal shell holder adapter installed on it.

Hope this helps.


Kevin Rohrer
April 4, 2011, 09:07 AM
Fred: If you have problems w/ Photobucket, PM me here and I will give you my phone # so I can walk you thru the problem.

April 4, 2011, 12:25 PM

If this works, it's a picture of my newer Hollywood Senior press, with my RCBS Rockchucker for comparison.

Hope this helps.


PS: Thanks, Kevin

April 4, 2011, 04:50 PM
I use a Hollywood press that I purchased new 50 years ago.
I have extra primer punches, Hollywood shell holders and an "insert type"shell holders that takes the R.C.B.S. offerings.
Loading .50 BMG rounds?
Not sure that the press is big enough dimension wise.

April 4, 2011, 05:03 PM
The Hollywood Senior press in my picture will load .50 BMG, and I believe it was designed for that purpose. It uses an adaptor for 7/8 x 14 dies, and there is more than enough throw to full length size that case. It also has enough leverage to do the job.

My original Hollywood Senior isn't large enough to load .50 BMG, and it's difficult to load my .45-120 Sharps rounds on it. There isn't enough room to set a bullet on top of a 3.250" long case on that press, which is why I really wanted the second press. It will load the .45-120 with ease, plus do the heavy chores of swaging bullets.

Hope this helps.


Kevin Rohrer
April 4, 2011, 08:40 PM
Not sure that the press is big enough dimension wise.

I think he wrote this tongue-in-cheek. :)

And yes, that press was designed to load Big Boy rounds. :what:

Yep, that pic turned out fine. If you use the message picture icon or insert before and after the URL, the pic will be displayed rather than just the link.

Now how about that pic of the Dunbar shellholder? :D

Zeke/PA: If you have an extra Large Rifle Senior Turret primer arm, I'd be interested in buying it. That's the only one I am missing. :cuss:

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