What else do I need?


PDA






primalmu
December 1, 2012, 08:38 PM
Hey everyone, I'm looking at buying a reloading press, specifically this one:

http://www.brownells.com/reloading/reloading-presses/reloading-press-kits-amp-accessories/lee-50th-anniversary-kit-prod54177.aspx

I want to start reloading .223 and 9mm.

My question is, what do I need in addition to what comes with the kit? (Note: I already have digital calipers and a digital scale.)

If you enjoyed reading about "What else do I need?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
Hungry1
December 1, 2012, 10:09 PM
A reloading manual or two
Case tumbler and media
Case trimmer
Loading Blocks
Primers
Powder
Bullets

cfullgraf
December 1, 2012, 10:18 PM
My question is, what do I need in addition to what comes with the kit? (Note: I already have digital calipers and a digital scale.)

Check out the sticky at the top of the forum, "Reloading Library of Wisdom". It will probably answer your questions.

2bfree
December 1, 2012, 11:50 PM
Other than dies get yourself a package of Breech Lock quick-change bushing, they are sold in packages of 2. The kit comes with 1 bushing but with a 3 die set having all three set with out having to readjust with every change is really nice.

TurtlePhish
December 2, 2012, 12:01 AM
I just got that kit the other day, actually. All I got to go with it was a Hornady ultrasonic cleaner, cleaning solution, and reloading components. All set to go.

Edit: Oh yeah, a manual too. Forgot to mention that. And my 7.62x54r dies.

upstech76
December 2, 2012, 01:09 AM
Reloading manual is a must.
Dies for each caliber.
Lee makes a handy trimmer for each caliber that you can use with a drill. (Not needed for pistol calibers.)
Some type of tool to remove the primer crimp on the 223 rounds. Even the Federal you buy at Walmart has the crimp.
Tumblers are nice but not a must have. I started out washing them n a sink and drying for a day or two before loading.
Consumables (Primers, Powder, Bullets)

Kevin Rohrer
December 2, 2012, 01:16 AM
Buy and read Lyman #49. All your questions will be answered.

918v
December 2, 2012, 10:53 AM
Don't buy a kit.

G11354
December 2, 2012, 11:05 AM
Get the Lee reloading manual along with a reloading manual from the manufacturer of the bullets you are going to be using. I have the "Lee Modern Reloading 2nd Edition" along with the "Hornady Handbook of Cartridge Reloading 8th Edition".

You may want to consider a case tumbler and certainly a bullet puller. I have the "Frankford Arsenal Case Tumbler", cost about $40 with shipping included.

I would also recommend a press mounted bullet puller such as that offered by RCBS, runs for about $40. You could opt for a kinetic bullet puller which is roughly $15 to $20 but is not preferred by many for rounds that failed to fire.

Also get the case trimming tool for your calibers from Lee, your press should come with the trimming lug that goes with them.

45lcshooter
December 2, 2012, 11:24 AM
I use several manuals, good for cross reference, also there are recipes online you can print out. If you get a normal vibratory tumbler, cut up dryer sheets and put some in with the medis and brass, the dryer sheet will collect a lot of the dirt and keep your media cleaner longer.

Good supply of brass, when shooting you always have some escapees.

thump_rrr
December 2, 2012, 11:34 AM
I have that kit and for the price it's a good kit however the priming system isn't all that great.
Lee sells a similar kit with a hand primer which is much better.
This one HERE (http://www.brownells.com/reloading/reloading-presses/reloading-press-kits-amp-accessories/lee-breech-lock-challenger-kit-prod54175.aspx)

I would also purchase a nice digital scale.

RandyP
December 2, 2012, 11:51 AM
The Lee Anniv kit is a great way to start the hobby IMHO, I have both it and the terrific CLASSIC turret- also available in a kit for about $200 (my personal preference)

You will need some calipers - the Harbor Freight $10 digitals are more than accurate enough. Also sold under other brandings for a bit more.

+1 on a kinetic bullet puller (looks like a plastic mallet) a simple and safe way to take ammo apart should you make a mistake (and you will -lol - we all do)

primalmu
December 2, 2012, 04:45 PM
I ended up ordering the Hornady Lock-n-Load Classic single stage kit.

http://www.brownells.com/reloading/reloading-presses/reloading-press-kits-accessories/hornady-lock-n-load-classic-reloading-kit-hornady-lock-n-load-classic-reloading-kit-sku749009855-38567-72685.aspx

$259 with my C&R discount, and I'll get about $150 worth of free bullets. Seems like a darn good deal to me, and 500 .308 bullets will set me up for at least the next 2 years.

Still need to get some dies, bullet puller (Hornady has a nice one that mounts in the press), and extra LNL bushings, not to mention powder, primers, etc. I think this will be a good start.

mljdeckard
December 5, 2012, 05:23 PM
I inherited a kit, and I still wound up adding a lot of things to it. A tumbler, (and probably a media seperator) a caliper, a good lamp with a magnifier has saved my life more than once, a lot of clear bins with lids, (Tupperware size but cheaper like they have at Walmart,) I like having a Lee hand press ($32) to do a lot of the work while I watch TV, throw away the lube pad and case lube brushes, get a can of aerosol case lube spray and a ziploc bag. That's what comes to my mind.

And some sharpies and dry-erase markers to mark the bins.

Lost Sheep
December 5, 2012, 09:18 PM
Don't buy a kit.
Advice without the reasoning behind it is pretty much useless. Care to share?

I do not like the concept of a kit, either. But I recognize that some people will be more satisfied if they do start there. It is a matter of which approach (buying a kit vs building your own) kit fits your personality.

Here's my reasoning:

A kit will get you started with ALMOST everything you need. They always lack something. They also have things you use, but will be unsatisfied with and trade in (at a loss, it goes without saying). So the savings in getting a kit is largely illusion. But it probably will get you started a little quicker.

A Kit will also have things you don't need, which is a waste of money But does provide some trade goods.

Building your own kit MAY be a little more expensive, but carries with it the research (and knowledge gained therefrom) you do in selecting the equipment best for you.

Primalmu, how long is your foresight?

Without a press, dies and a way to mete powder, you cannot load, period. (Exception, the Lee Load-All, which is dead slow and uses a mallet to drive the process, which is dead scary to watch.)

These two, you cannot load without, physically. Press and dies.

Powder can be measured out by scoops, by scale or by a powder measure or a combination of those and it would be exceedingly foolish (or suicidal) to load without measuring your powder.

So, count three items as absolutely essential. Everything else adds safety, efficiency and speed. Most can be done without, improvised or substituted for (e.g. a lube pad: fingers, paper towel, or sponge can do, or spray lube can be used).

The "more than are essential" items, though, are necessary for reasonable safety. A loading manual with load recipes and instructions of how to go about the process. A pair of safety glasses (just in case a primer goes off, which is rare, but can happen).

So, five things HIGHLY HIGHLY recommended.

A way to place primers in the priming cup on the press is a great help (rather than using your fingers) and will speed things up as well as reducing the chance that skin oils will contaminate the primers.

Six things and your are reasonably set up for everything you can expect.

A bullet puller will enable you to disassemble any rounds you put together that are out of spec (or that you suspect might be). Loading blocks let you keep a batch of cartridges together conveniently. Micrometer will help measure things when you find that you want to measure something. Most store-bought bullets are the right size, so yo might not need the micrometer for a while.

As you load and develop your personal style, you will find things you would like to have. Pick them up as you go.

How you populate your loading bench, and with what pieces of gear is largely, then, a matter of personal style. There are several different ways to approach your question.

1) Buy a ready-made kit

2) Assemble a kit of your own, choosing as complete a kit as you can get, of premium gear you will never outgrow

3) Assemble a kit piece-by-piece with the components you expect you will never outgrow, but only the minimum pieces absolutely necessary and expanding as you find need for each additional piece, slowly, and as money and knowledge allows

4) Assemble a kit of your own choosing as complete as you can get with affordable gear that you will use until you outgrow it and hope that, by that time, you will have figured out what you want to use and will never outgrow

5) Assemble a kit of your own choosing with the minimum usable, least expensive components and upgrade as your tastes reveal themselves and as money allows. Spend money for upgrades as your taste spurs you.


Each approach has its proponents. Each approach has its virtues and its drawbacks.

The necessary pre-requisite elements to successfully using each approach are:

Start-up Money
Money over time
Knowledge
Time
Money over the time of ownership (or at least 10 years)
and then
What level of convenience of use you may expect to begin with

Here is a grid of what elements (and their importance) which are required for each approach

1 Store-bought "complete" kit. Swap out components as needed:
virtue: easy and requires little thought
drawback: can be wasteful, and requires little thought

2 Self-Assemble complete Kit:
virtue: requires you think about loading BEFORE you commit money and body parts
drawback: requires a lot of study, and even so you may make less-than-optimal purchases

3 Slowly self-assemble premium components kit & add-on as you go
virtue: you learn about loading and your equipment thoroughly and only spend money as you are sure of what you are buying
drawback: takes more time (weeks, maybe before you are completely set up, though you can be loading the first weekend)

The approaches I outlined should provide you some food for thought. What type of hobbyist are you? Are you analytical and thoughtful or do you jump right in and improvise as you go? Got more time than money, or more money than time?

My first advice: Read "The ABC's of Reloading", an excellent tome on the general processes of reloading.

Having said that, let me share with you some posts and threads I think you will enjoy. So get a large mug of coffee, tea, hot chocolate, whatever you keep on hand when you read and think and read through these.


The "sticky" thread at the top of TheHighRoad.com's reloading forum is good, entitled, "For the New Reloader: Thinking about Reloading; Equipment Basics -- READ THIS FIRST"
http://www.thehighroad.org//showthread.php?t=238214

The "sticky" thread at the top of TheFiringLine's reloading forum is good, entitled, "For the New Reloader: Equipment Basics -- READ THIS FIRST "
http://www.thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=230171

The first draft of my "10 Advices..." is on page 2 of this thread, about halfway down.
http://www.rugerforum.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=13543

http://www.rugerforum.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=22344

http://www.outdoorsdirectory.com/showthread.php?t=43055

http://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=448410

Thread entitled "Newby needs help."
http://www.thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=430391
My post 11 is entitled "Here's my reloading setup, which I think you might want to model" November 21, 2010)
My post 13 is "10 Advices for the novice handloader" November 21, 2010)

http://www.Thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=439810

"Budget Beginning bench you will never outgrow for the novice handloader" was informed by my recent (July 2010) repopulation of my loading bench. It is what I would have done 35 years ago if I had known then what I know now.
http://www.rugerforum.net/reloading/29385-budget-beginning-bench-you-will-never-outgrow-novice-handloader.html

Minimalist minimal (the seventh post down)
http://www.rugerforum.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=107332

Lost Shkeep

Lost Sheep
December 6, 2012, 02:20 AM
I ended up ordering the Hornady Lock-n-Load Classic single stage kit.

http://www.brownells.com/reloading/reloading-presses/reloading-press-kits-accessories/hornady-lock-n-load-classic-reloading-kit-hornady-lock-n-load-classic-reloading-kit-sku749009855-38567-72685.aspx

$259 with my C&R discount, and I'll get about $150 worth of free bullets. Seems like a darn good deal to me, and 500 .308 bullets will set me up for at least the next 2 years.

Still need to get some dies, bullet puller (Hornady has a nice one that mounts in the press), and extra LNL bushings, not to mention powder, primers, etc. I think this will be a good start.
A good press. For your .308, it is ideal. When you want a higher production rate (as for handgun rounds or your .223) I will suggest the Lee Classic Turret if you want a moderate production rate and a Hornady or Dillon progressive if you want large quantities.

Lost Sheep

Kachok
December 6, 2012, 02:45 AM
I started off with a Lee reloader kit (which I still use) digital calipers and the Nosler manual (still my favorite)
I upgraded my beam scale to a digital and have never regretted the move. SOOOO much better.
Any rifle cartrage you load for I highly recommend trying Serria Game King bullets for accuracy, they are simply the best out there, bar none. If you ever want to reload any high power rifle cartrage Varget, RL-15, H4350, RL-19, Big Game, and RL-22 are superb in their appropriate calibers. Especially the RL-19 which gives remarkable accuracy in most of my rifles.
You might want to consider a brass tumbler, my Lyman Turbo twin is a nice piece for a good price.
A lube pad would help alot too.

Reefinmike
December 6, 2012, 03:39 AM
as several others have said, tumbler, dies, case trimmer and loading manual. also, as others have stated, consider the lee turret press. you can always use it as a single stage if you desire so and then ramp up production when you feel more comfortable. If you were only loading 223, i would not try to sway you from a single stage, but pistol can get a bit annoying if you load a lot on a single stage. Accurately pumping out 300 pistol rounds an hour on a turret isnt too difficult.

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