What does every reloading bench need?


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brow_tines
June 17, 2012, 12:32 PM
Aside from press, manuals, dies, powder etc., what would you recommend every bench should have?

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jmorris
June 17, 2012, 12:36 PM
Good lighting.

gahunter12
June 17, 2012, 12:44 PM
I 2nd good lighting. Also a good scale, and primer flip tray.

Trent
June 17, 2012, 12:55 PM
A nice looking woman wearing next to nothing laying on it?

Good radio. Avoid watching TV or other visual distractions. That'll eventually lead to accidents.

ColtPythonElite
June 17, 2012, 12:58 PM
x2 on the radio.

Bud0505
June 17, 2012, 01:03 PM
As an older reloader I like some sort of good magnification for those occasional times when you can't read a head stamp or instructions on a small bottle, etc....

Crashbox
June 17, 2012, 01:14 PM
Another +1 for good lighting. I have a two-bulb T-8 fluorescent fixture and four, 13-watt CFL's lighting the top of my bench. I also installed a rope light for illuminating the two lower shelves, I underestimated how beneficial that would be.

My bench is BRIGHT but not annoyingly so. Maybe I'll post an updated photo of it-

MachIVshooter
June 17, 2012, 01:15 PM
Where to even start???

It depends largely on what cartridges you load, and for what purposes. A couple handgun rounds for cheap plinking? Rifle for competetive shooting?

bds
June 17, 2012, 01:17 PM
+1 on good lighting. I have 2 goose neck light fixtures with 13 watt CFL bulbs mounted over my bench and I can direct lighting exactly where I need them without glare. I usually need only 1 light fixture on but having the extra lighting is a plus, especially for minimizing shadows.


I also install peg board backing to every reloading bench I build as I can use different peg board hooks to ensure frequently used reloading components/tools are within easy reach.

Another is a multiple small drawer unit to keep small items organized.

Pit4Brains
June 17, 2012, 01:26 PM
I covered mine with a 1/8 thick layer of blue esd matting. I like the soft, yet firm surface that the rubber has and it helps to see dust / powder / parts , etc. as compared to beat up butcher block. I also put a small three inch smooth jawed clamp-on vice at the end.

Another vote for good overhead lighting and a radio. You'll want some fairly still air also as a slight breeze can upset beam scales.

beatledog7
June 17, 2012, 01:33 PM
Perhaps more important than what you have on your bench are those that fall into the "what you should not have on your bench" category.

Don't start a lot of rounds until you have just one jug of powder; one tray of primers; one chambering of brass; one make, type, and weight bullet; one set of dies; etc. on the working surface. Break out exactly what you need for the lot of rounds you're going to build, and clear the decks of anything and everything else that is not part of that lot.

Of course keep handy the radio, something to sip on, those tools that apply to any caliber, and the like. Just don't have anything on your bench that could "contaminate" your lot of cartridges.

bigfinger76
June 17, 2012, 02:02 PM
A paper towel holder mounted to the side.

Josh45
June 17, 2012, 02:10 PM
1. Attention.
2. Lighting.
3. Attention to details.
4. Be organized.... If you can....Trust me, Your going to wanna know where that do-hicky is at.

Trent
June 17, 2012, 02:22 PM
Label all of your little drawers (if you have them). Nothing more frustrating than opening 50 little drawers to find that one part you're looking for. :)

If you don't have lots of little drawers, get them. Everything should have it's place and go back there when done. Otherwise you'll find yourself missing what you need, right when you need it.

JohnM
June 17, 2012, 02:28 PM
Every bench needs another bench to hold the stuff the other benches won't.

jhop73
June 17, 2012, 02:40 PM
small dry erase board, i always write down what i am going to be loading so i can verify it at a glance

homatok
June 17, 2012, 02:59 PM
I screwed a 2 drawer (old style) card file unit to the underside of my bench to hold the die sets I use most often.

MifflinKid
June 17, 2012, 07:00 PM
A Dillon Precision calendar.

Ky Larry
June 17, 2012, 07:19 PM
An alert, sober human.

Nikdfish
June 17, 2012, 07:27 PM
+1 for good lighting
safety glasses for use while priming & using an impact puller ...
& a decent set of calipers

Nick

earplug
June 17, 2012, 07:36 PM
At times something gets stuck and needs more hands then most of us have.

Buzzsaw46
June 17, 2012, 08:19 PM
A mini fridge.

Owen
June 17, 2012, 08:28 PM
A mini fridge.

disagree, you shouldn't eat or drink while reloading. if you need a drink or some food, take a break, go wash your hands, and come back when you're done.

tightgroup tiger
June 17, 2012, 08:33 PM
Good lighting

electrical outlets

a small box of some kind with tools, hex keys, 8" adjustable, etc.

a small shop vac in the area for picking up powder and lost spent primers

I keep my porter cable nail gun compressor in mine for blowing powder out from under the shell plates

shelves behind and above the presses and a garbage can below them

I wish I had a lap top in mine with my manuals on it and internet for looking things up. It's comin

The almighty pensil sharpener

More auto progressive presses! one for each caliber, you know, like a lot of you have!

Win1892
June 17, 2012, 09:07 PM
Dillon calendar. About 3 years worth.

Very important accessory.

rcmodel
June 17, 2012, 09:17 PM
I gots to have a Magic Marker or a birthday candle for smoking cases / setting headspace, checking leade contact, etc.
And a Sharpie Pen for marking load data on boxes, bags, and masking tape on ammo cans.

Also a medium size pair of channel-lock pliers for die lock rings.

Also a big mixing bowl for spray lubing cases.
And lots of loading blocks.
And a coffee can hung on a nail just below the bench by the press to drop them in after sizing, expanding and seating so you don't have to put them back in the loading block each operation.

Did I mention lots of never used junk?
Every reloading bench needs lots of never used junk it seems.

rc

gamestalker
June 17, 2012, 09:24 PM
Deffinitly good lighting and a magnification device. I use a couple of objective lenses from a cheap pair of binoculars that I disassembled. When I'm loading bottle neck cartridges I use the magnifying glass to inspect the cases for any issues I might not see with the naked eye. You would be surprised how much slips by the eyes of an older fellow such as myself without the added magnification.

GS

kingmt
June 17, 2012, 10:31 PM
A nice looking woman wearing next to nothing laying on it?
My wife doesn't lay on it but she keeps taking my chair.

hang fire
June 17, 2012, 11:27 PM
Good lighting and a magnification device for perusing a Dillon Blue Press, articles only of course.

As most space is taken on my bench, having my drill press next to it so can utilize the rotating table. I also use it for mounting MEC Jr when loading shot shells.

http://i3.photobucket.com/albums/y92/TANSTAAFL-2/P1010093.jpg

http://hstrial-rchambers.homestead.com/_cid_E077472F8F554E4F8F09B8C009BEBB8D_RolandPC.jpg

splattergun
June 17, 2012, 11:32 PM
A comfortable chair or, if you prefer to stand, a good floor mat. And music.

Certaindeaf
June 17, 2012, 11:36 PM
A good flashlight. No matter how much light there is, that doodad always finds the darkest crevice.

splattergun
June 18, 2012, 12:08 AM
Did I mention lots of never used junk?
Every reloading bench needs lots of never used junk it seems.

rc
Yes, but we must hold the belief that it will be used Some Day. Otherwise it's just clutter.

Pit4Brains
June 18, 2012, 01:11 AM
Or a 4 foot bench for you and a trainee, a wife, or whoever..

166498

rikman
June 18, 2012, 01:19 AM
A Dillon Precision calendar.
+1
Ah yes, I love Miss June :-) Mmm..oh yeah good lighting too...

4895
June 18, 2012, 01:22 AM
fire extinguisher, well placed lighting, small paint brush, can of compressed air, comfortable chair, plenty of storage.

1SOW
June 18, 2012, 01:33 AM
Even though already well suggested, GOOD LIGHTING.
Including lighting "INTO" the case after the powder drop.
I've found one of those small key-chain white LED lights also handy occassionally.
Handy storage for the press and die tools is beneficial
Sharpie Pen
Pre-made labels for your regular loads
Organized storeage shelf for Manuals and accumulated load data/info.
A small convenient trash container.

MachIVshooter
June 18, 2012, 02:42 AM
disagree, you shouldn't eat or drink while reloading. if you need a drink or some food, take a break, go wash your hands, and come back when you're done

It's just lead you're ingesting. What's the problem?:uhoh:

(I don't eat while loading, but pretty much always have a diet coke in close reach)

blarby
June 18, 2012, 08:57 AM
A competent and logical hand-loader sitting at it.

Preferably with a covered tea.

A learning youth is invaluable as a gopher and boxer, and teaching them carries on the tradition...so its preferable but not necessary.

Friendly, Don't Fire!
June 18, 2012, 09:32 AM
Extremely good lighting, preferably from many different sources (angles) to prevent any shadows.
Sorry, I see that has already been mentioned, however it is one thing that cannot be overly-emphasized!

LouieLouie
June 18, 2012, 04:33 PM
+1 on lighting & small flashlight.
I put some small wood molding around the edge of the table to keep round things from rolling off it. There is a soft bristle paint brush to sweep spilled items like powder or shot (not a matter of 'if' but 'when') to a corner of the molding for easier pickup.

Beat-tu
June 18, 2012, 04:43 PM
A clean floor....dropped 100 primers, found most of em.....in the first hour....

:banghead:
Tom

Clark
June 18, 2012, 05:00 PM
pin gage set, .060" -.250"
http://www.amazon.com/Westward-5PLF0-Gage-Minus-0-061-0-250/dp/B004ZROYIS

I have sets in the shop for gunsmithing and one in the reloading room for reloading.

A Pause for the Coz
June 18, 2012, 06:46 PM
Ummm.....
A toaster oven!!!!!:neener:

http://i33.photobucket.com/albums/d66/Kelly2215/100_8048.jpg


Ok maybe you dont have to have that, but sure is nice to pan lube bullets with.

Lighting is #1. I dont care how nice your equipment is or is not. Bad lighting will drive you nuts.:what:

cougar1717
June 18, 2012, 06:48 PM
A dedicated logbook or computer to record your batches, loads, and results.

A level, scrubbable work surface.

Shelving to store in progress and finished cartridges.

Texan Scott
June 18, 2012, 06:59 PM
Any good workbench (to include woodworking) needs a magnifying glass with light on a bendy arm. Also, a good vise affixed (a good third hand). And a comfortable stool... vinyl upholstered (for ease of cleaning) and padded,with a bit of low back support.

dragon813gt
June 18, 2012, 10:49 PM
Dust pan and brush for cleaning the bench before you start and after you're done. I can't stand a messy work bench. I know I'm in the minority from the pics I've seen.


Brought to you by TapaTalk.

Certaindeaf
June 18, 2012, 11:02 PM
A good leaf blower sure seems to come in handy.

A-FIXER
June 19, 2012, 12:21 AM
Can of Hornady oneshot dry lube, die wrenchs, stuck case remover, cordless drill, dremel tool w/bits, metal polisher to be use with dremel tool, I use old cleaning mops to polish the die innards, some type of spray cleaner 409 or such, a bag of rags, can of compressed air is a must, a rim on the bench so when primers slip out of your hand they remain on the bench or loose projectiles, a method of placing extra bin trays to edge of bench for processed or pending steps in easy reach and attachable so when you bum them they don't fall off, a mirror to reflect the light you have increases it.

blarby
June 19, 2012, 01:28 AM
die wrenchs, stuck case remover, cordless drill, dremel tool w/bits, metal polisher to be use with dremel tool, I use old cleaning mops to polish the die innards

The need for these things starts with :

Hornady oneshot

True statement.

A good leaf blower sure seems to come in handy.

I have a dirt devil with a hepa bag.... I prefer suck to blow ^.^

1SOW
June 19, 2012, 01:43 AM
A good leaf blower sure seems to come in handy.
https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-dKBc0WDmIso/TrMw_HKj6mI/AAAAAAAAAlM/H1aNrMgs3Uk/s128/1%5B2%5D.gif

jim243
June 19, 2012, 02:00 AM
Some of this.

Jim

http://i620.photobucket.com/albums/tt284/bigjim_02/ReloadingBench6-3-2012.jpg

Certaindeaf
June 19, 2012, 02:28 AM
https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-dKBc0WDmIso/TrMw_HKj6mI/AAAAAAAAAlM/H1aNrMgs3Uk/s128/1%5B2%5D.gif
Oh yesh!

http://www.dvdizzy.com/images/a-c/caddyshack-05.jpg

mgkdrgn
June 19, 2012, 04:03 PM
Cup holders! :evil:

Crashbox
June 19, 2012, 10:26 PM
Another vote for a good log book or computer program to do so. Several times I've referred back to various items in mine, and I have kept a log from day one. Extremely useful.

Just a week or two ago I finished off loading up a box of MBC 140 TCFP .357's and noticed I had 486 accounted for, or so I thought. I wasn't going to sweat 14 bullets but it still had me puzzled. So, I took a look at the log book and sure enough, I had 15 work-ups plus I made two "template" rounds. Yep, I got more than 500!

jdgreen
June 20, 2012, 07:03 PM
Those clear plastic shoe-box size storage boxes w/ lids are sure handy. They're 99 cents at Walmart. Plus all these other great ideas.

kcshooter
June 20, 2012, 07:50 PM
An mp3 player speaker system.

BBDartCA
June 20, 2012, 08:00 PM
A fire extinguisher.

788Ham
June 20, 2012, 10:48 PM
MY GAWD hang fire, if a fire were to ever start......... that corner of the house is gone! I thought I had scads of powder under my bench! LOL :eek:

10-4 on the extinguisher!!!

AABEN
June 20, 2012, 11:21 PM
Air conditioning good radio lots of light tools and a lot of storage a Lyman ultrasonic case cleaner and a locked door to keep every one out when loading!!

lightman
June 21, 2012, 04:29 PM
Other than the tools and gear,good lighting,a good comfortable chair,a dedicated trash can,a few office supplies.(pens,paper clips,stapler,post-it-notes,ect)Speaking of tools,any tool that I have needed,I have bought,so that the loading room has its own set.No more trips out to the shop. Lightman

Hondo 60
June 21, 2012, 05:35 PM
What does every reloading bench need?

An operator who's clean & sober.
And has more than 1/2 a brain.

THe Dove
June 21, 2012, 06:20 PM
An operator who's clean & sober.
And has more than 1/2 a brain.

What does clean mean? Sober, I get.

The Dove

Kevin Rohrer
June 21, 2012, 07:08 PM
A Vernier caliper...and good lighting. :)

M.Weier
June 21, 2012, 07:21 PM
An iPhone with the GunTalkRadio app playing on it!

If you enjoyed reading about "What does every reloading bench need?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!