Any used presses to avoid?


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armedaccountant
August 2, 2013, 07:30 PM
I am thinking about trying my hand at reloading. I am bad about deciding to do something and then I get all the gear and spend the money, do it one time and never touch it again. So just in case that happens with reloading I want to start with a cheaper used press. I will be looking at pawn shops, garage sales, etc. If it is something that I get into I will spend the money to upgrade to something nicer.

I was just wondering if there were any makes and models of presses that for whatever reason wouldn't be worth buying even for cheap. I don't know if there were ever presses produced that had major problems, or that were overly complicated, etc. Since I am new and also not wanting to spend a lot of money I will only be looking at single stages.

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Bush Pilot
August 2, 2013, 07:40 PM
Any progressives that have Lee stamped on them.

jaguarxk120
August 2, 2013, 08:08 PM
What you would spend for a new less expensive press, you can buy a used RCBS or Redding for about the same money.

Look for the older quality presses like RCBS, Redding, C-H, Coax, or Hornady.

bds
August 2, 2013, 08:25 PM
Any used presses to avoid?

I will only be looking at single stages.
Any progressives that have Lee stamped on them.
Wow. So much hatred ... even when OP asked for used "single stage" press ... :rolleyes:

I want to start with a cheaper used press. I will be looking at pawn shops, garage sales, etc.

If it is something that I get into I will spend the money to upgrade to something nicer.
Good plan. It's hard to go wrong with name brand "O" ring type single stage presses, even Lee. I would avoid overpriced presses and ones with too much rust or damage. I frequently see them for $25-$35 at gun shows and classifieds, even at recent gun show just a month ago.

Tolkachi Robotnik
August 2, 2013, 10:30 PM
A lot of old tong tools require a different set of dies that are not readily available now, size and threads differ on those.

I have a Lee C press, and it works fine enough. Those should be about $5 used. They used to be $10 or $20 new. I also have a Texan or two for shotshells. Those did not cost much and they work, but father made a piece or two for those on his lathe.

Currently active companies are probably a better set to deal with if you don't have a father with a metal lathe.

You will invest some time if you have the simplest presses. They are safer and better for a beginning effort. I enjoy the activity so the time doesn't bother.

TexasShooter59
August 2, 2013, 10:37 PM
I felt like you when I started and was not sure if I would enjoy reloading or not. I bought the least expensive Lee press, the C press.

Now that press is used only as the depriming press, and I have a Lee Classic Cast single stage for everything else.

http://leeprecision.com/images/T/t-786.jpg

Jim Watson
August 2, 2013, 10:43 PM
What calibers?

For rifle loading, I want compound leverage like Rockchucker and other heavy duty presses made since the RCBS patent ran out. The old toggle lever linkage takes more effort.
Look at pictures to get the idea. The Lyman Spartan is discontinued but common and has the plain toggle.

Avoid presses without T-slot shellholders.
There are older types of interchangeable shellholder that are hard to find, although some adapters are available.
There are even presses with the shellholder machined into the top of the ram and no interchangeability at all, except by replacing the whole ram.

Icky The Great
August 2, 2013, 11:13 PM
Actually I found the Lyman T Mag II to be a very nice press for the money. You could buy the expert kit and have just about everything you would nee to start, including a loading manual.
http://www.midsouthshooterssupply.com/item.asp?sku=000157810140
The nice thing about these presses is that if your loading one or two caliber, you could leave them setup for the next time. Mine is still sporting the 38spl/357mag and 44mag dies. That is all I load on it. I have done rifle loads with great success as well, 30-06 and 308, 30-30, 7.65, 7.62 and 223s. The kit was very nice as a whole. If your loading pistol go with the carbide dies. No need to lube the cases if they are clean.

armedaccountant
August 2, 2013, 11:16 PM
Thanks for all the replies, I will definitely check out the C press.

I will mainly be loading .40s&w and .38spl. No rifle rounds just yet. I will stick with handgun rounds until I decide I am really into reloading.

gamestalker
August 3, 2013, 05:06 AM
In general, I would probably steer clear of the link type Lee presses. They are terrible and flex really bad with bottle neck cases. I would keep my eyes open for a used RCBS or other "O" frame press. Even the less expensive cast aluminum "O" frames aren't too bad. But for a good "O" frame press, the RCBS cast iron presses, used or new, are all pretty much indestructible and will generally last a couple life times if taken care of properly.

And if you should ever decide to get into shot shell, don't buy a Lee Load All. But the inexpensive Mec 600 Jr. is a gem of a loader, they will last a life time.

GS

GaryL
August 3, 2013, 10:19 AM
I would look for specific ones, like a Lee Classic Cast, RCBS Rockchucker, etc
Then you will know what you are getting.

rsrocket1
August 3, 2013, 10:30 AM
I was thinking that almost any press is better than nothing, but recently there is a new company to definitely stay away from. Smart Reloader presses seem to be cheap copies of existing designs. Some reviews I read say that alignment can be terrible and that the presses aren't even usable for depriming. Their return policy used to be that you had to pay to ship it back to Italy, but it looks as if there is an official US distributor that will "accept" returns only after they give you permission to send it to them.

There are so many good US made presses around that you shouldn't have a problem finding one at a decent price.

jcwit
August 3, 2013, 11:01 AM
I'm surprised it took all the way to the first reply to bash Lee.

jerkface11
August 3, 2013, 11:38 AM
If you find a Forster co-ax for a reasonable price snap it up. You won't find a better single stage press.

kerreckt
August 3, 2013, 12:30 PM
If you are looking for a single stage. The press to get is the Lee classic cast iron press. I have a competitive RCBS and Lyman press and the Lee will resize 30-06 with less effort than either of the others. It has done the dirty work for ten years and still absolutely no play in the linkage. Some of the Lee product might not appeal to some folks but this press is the best on the market. Oh yea, its paint job isn't quite as nice as some of the others presses according some people. That's what I like people who understand tools and their uses.

stargeezer
August 3, 2013, 02:17 PM
40 years of reloading on a RCBS Rock Chucker, RCBS Turret Press and a Dillon XL650. The first thirty five years was on the Rock Chucker exclusively. These "O" presses don't flex, don't ware out (if you oil them once a year), and will outlast you. I bought another one at a pawn shop last year to just deprime on for a low $70. Sure you can buy a arm full of Lee presses for that - but don't you think there may be a reason?

Some Lee equipment is ok, but as a rule it is like buying Harbor Freight power tools - they may run, you may get a job or two done, but just when you need one late at night with all the stores closed, they give up on you.

I used a Lee hand primer for 25-30 years. Then one day it fell and shattered. It served me well and I didn't hesitate to get online and order the "new and improved model" - it was new and redesigned and it worked like most Lee equipment - crap. I use a Lee primer tray, and a couple other small hand tools. But everything that has any links or joints is a problem for them. Just so it can't be said that I've never tried Lee tools, I can assure you that I have a box of the stuff sitting in the garage, stuffed under a bench with other stuff I'd never even give to anybody else.

We were asked for an opinion. Mine is to stay away from Lee if you want quality ammo.

stargeezer
August 3, 2013, 02:24 PM
double post - sorry

jcwit
August 3, 2013, 02:44 PM
Ammo loaded with Lee products held the record for accuracy for years, Yes, that was done with inferior equipment.

With that said most all of the manufactures today make and distribute quality equipment with IMO the one exception of SmartReloader. That's sorta like a smart car running with a convoy of truckers.

Thread such as this does nothing more than bring out the Lee bashers just as a thread asking about the NRA brings out the NRA bashers. Same ole. same ole.

Constrictor
August 3, 2013, 04:25 PM
I'd stay away from any Lee presses. Dies are decent though.

jcwit
August 3, 2013, 05:37 PM
I'd stay away from any Lee presses.
stay away from Lee if you want quality ammo.

OK being as others seem the need to turn this into a bash Lee thread, I'll come out of hiding.

There is nothing at all wrong with the Lee Classic Cast Presses, to think otherwise is nothing less than--well I can't describe it as it will get me in trouble. But for the difference in price

Lee Classic Cast Press -------- $93.98
https://fsreloading.com/lee-precision-classic-cast-press-90998.html

Sorta hard to beat for value. Course if braging right are needed?? And remember Lee is not the only one offering a "quality" press made of Cast Aluminum, ever take a good look at the RCBS Partner?

The Lee Perfect Powder Measure if one takes the time to research it is one of the most accurate measures out their. Many tho seem to have trouble with ball powder with them tho, just as many have trouble with other measures and their cut off.

http://www.sniperforums.com/forum/cartridges-calibers/35463-powder-measure-accuracy-thread.html

http://www.24hourcampfire.com/ubbthreads/ubbthreads.php/topics/7393542/Re_Lee_perfect_powder_measure_

As for those who claim its made of "cheap" plastic, take a close look at your cars dash the next time you go somewhere, or better yet pop the hood even if its a Cadillac and check out all the "cheap" plastic you or the bank owns under there.

Now with all of the above said, just so you'al don't come to the conclusion all I have is "cheap" Lee equipment I also use much in the way of RCBS, Hornady, and Redding equipment. Also much in the way of Sinclair, such as case prepping tools and their Arbor Press, and the Wilson dies they market.

So in closing, a used cast Lee press will serve you well as will just about any cast press from any other manufacturer, in fact even the cast aluminum Lee presses that have not been abused and kept lightly lubed on their wearing surfaces will also serve you well, as will cast aluminum presses from other manufactures that have not been abused and kept lightly lubed.

Bush Pilot
August 3, 2013, 08:21 PM
OK being as others seem the need to turn this into a bash Lee thread, I'll come out of hiding.

There is nothing at all wrong with the Lee Classic Cast Presses, to think otherwise is nothing less than--well I can't describe it as it will get me in trouble. But for the difference in price

Lee Classic Cast Press -------- $93.98
https://fsreloading.com/lee-precision-classic-cast-press-90998.html

Sorta hard to beat for value. Course if braging right are needed?? And remember Lee is not the only one offering a "quality" press made of Cast Aluminum, ever take a good look at the RCBS Partner?

The Lee Perfect Powder Measure if one takes the time to research it is one of the most accurate measures out their. Many tho seem to have trouble with ball powder with them tho, just as many have trouble with other measures and their cut off.

http://www.sniperforums.com/forum/cartridges-calibers/35463-powder-measure-accuracy-thread.html

http://www.24hourcampfire.com/ubbthreads/ubbthreads.php/topics/7393542/Re_Lee_perfect_powder_measure_

As for those who claim its made of "cheap" plastic, take a close look at your cars dash the next time you go somewhere, or better yet pop the hood even if its a Cadillac and check out all the "cheap" plastic you or the bank owns under there.

Now with all of the above said, just so you'al don't come to the conclusion all I have is "cheap" Lee equipment I also use much in the way of RCBS, Hornady, and Redding equipment. Also much in the way of Sinclair, such as case prepping tools and their Arbor Press, and the Wilson dies they market.

So in closing, a used cast Lee press will serve you well as will just about any cast press from any other manufacturer, in fact even the cast aluminum Lee presses that have not been abused and kept lightly lubed on their wearing surfaces will also serve you well, as will cast aluminum presses from other manufactures that have not been abused and kept lightly lubed.
Come out of hiding? Didn't you do that a couple of posts back?

While we're at it, I've got a few jokes about Indiana you might enjoy.

Arkansas Paul
August 3, 2013, 08:48 PM
Anyone who says you can't load quality ammo on Lee equipment doesn't know their butt end from a hole in the ground. I have tailored ammo for several rifles that consistently shoot sub MOA and all with Lee press and dies.

I have other presses too and like them as well, but there's not a thing wrong with Lee. They are not the Harbor Freight of reloading tools, Smart Reloader is.

CMD-Ky
August 3, 2013, 09:15 PM
While the Redding T-7 is not a single stage, I encourage you not to pass one by should you find a used one. It has all of the advantages of the single stage without having to change and set up dies with each step. You can also have the ability to have seven dies setup and adjusted for more than one caliber.

a1rstreamer
August 3, 2013, 09:18 PM
I'm using a Lee Breech Lock Hand Press. The kit was only $60 and it works just fine for me. I'm currently loading 9mm and after case prep I load about 50 rounds per hour.

jcwit
August 3, 2013, 09:21 PM
Come out of hiding? Didn't you do that a couple of posts back?

While we're at it, I've got a few jokes about Indiana you might enjoy.

A few posts back #13 to be exact I did not many defense of Lee, just stated I was surprised it only took to the 1st post to bash them.

What are you implying about Indiana jokes?

GT1
August 3, 2013, 09:27 PM
I'm guessing a purely American company that has found ways to do so much for significantly less must gall folks, for some reason. I don't know why, they should be cheered for their success, being a small-ish American company isn't easy these days..

I think maybe what really might be the issue is folks end up angry that they were steered to a $150-$300 tool and later found out a $90 Lee could do the same job(better, in the case of a classic cast over a chuckler) and last the same several lifetimes..

Bush Pilot
August 3, 2013, 09:46 PM
A few posts back #13 to be exact I did not many defense of Lee, just stated I was surprised it only took to the 1st post to bash them.

What are you implying about Indiana jokes?
It would have been tough to bash them any sooner LOL. BTW, that's not a joke about folks from Oklahoma.

orionengnr
August 3, 2013, 10:00 PM
If you can buy a used Dillon for any amount less than a new one, you will probably never lose a dime.

The flip side of the coin is, if you actually use the Dillon, you will likely never sell it...so you will avoid all of the "upgrade" costs that you would have endured by buying cheap, getting discouraged and moving up.

jcwit
August 3, 2013, 10:08 PM
BTW, that's not a joke about folks from Oklahoma.

What has Oklahoma have to do with this discussion? For that matter what has Indiana have to do with it? Do we really need to bring a comedy into this?

Elkins45
August 3, 2013, 10:42 PM
I would avoid buying a C style press, new or used. It's not that I would expect one to fail, it's just that an O style is less likely to deflect if you are case forming or some other task like that. For most ammo you would likely never see the difference, but for the same price the C is old technology.

My single stage press is an RCBS. Lee wasn't making presses when I bought it. If they were my press might be a Lee. I understand RCBS is having their presses cast in China now, but Lee still makes theres in the USA. So there are used Lees I would buy over new RCBS.

UKWildcats
August 3, 2013, 10:52 PM
Nothing wrong with Lee Single Stage Presses -- at least the "O" Presses.

Have had one for over 10 years without a problem except for the wooden ball coming off arm -- Just glued it back on.

Loaded hundred of rounds of 30-06, 308. and 223 -- never a problem.
-- Accurate
-- Inexpensive
-- Good Product
-- Can not imagine what other people are having problems with

I also have 2 Dillon 550's -- and "A" model I use for rifles and a "B" model I use for 9mm and 45acp -- also great presses with great customer service -- but would not recommend for starter press.


If you can find a Lee Cast "O" Press at a good price you will be fine -- If you can find a RCBS or similar press at a fair press you will be fine -- I would just stay away from presses that are from unknown manufacturers or an old press since it could be obsolete (hard to find parts for).


UK

Kp321
August 3, 2013, 11:10 PM
There are still some old presses out there that don't take standard shell holders, Herters comes to mind. Even some early RCBS presses use set screws to hold the shell holders in the ram rather than a spring.
What ever press you end up with, make sure you get the complete priming setup from the original owner. Replacements are not readily available for some older brands.
By the way, +1 on avoiding a C style press.

Bush Pilot
August 3, 2013, 11:14 PM
What has Oklahoma have to do with this discussion? For that matter what has Indiana have to do with it? Do we really need to bring a comedy into this?
I'm enjoying reading your responses, it calms me down after waiting for a broken aeroplane to get fixed.

Bush Pilot
August 3, 2013, 11:19 PM
To the OP, if you haven't found anything in a few days send me a PM. I can probably dig through some stuff and find a single stage you could try (and probably keep)

Bush Pilot
August 3, 2013, 11:22 PM
There are still some old presses out there that don't take standard shell holders, Herters comes to mind. Even some early RCBS presses use set screws to hold the shell holders in the ram rather than a spring.
What ever press you end up with, make sure you get the complete priming setup from the original owner. Replacements are not readily available for some older brands.
By the way, +1 on avoiding a C style press.
IIRC, somebody used to make a conversion thingy that would allow you to use standard shell holders with Herter's presses.

Oceanbob
August 3, 2013, 11:26 PM
The press is not all you have to buy. The extras can add up as well.

Lee has improved over the years. I own and operate two Dillons; but I am a committed reloading nut.

But if a new reloader who doesn't want to spend a large amount of bucks to get involved then I would recommend getting this for $219.99.

It has most of the extra gear you need. Not that expensive really.....

http://www.midwayusa.com/product/785993/lee-4-hole-turret-press-with-auto-index-deluxe-kit

jcwit
August 3, 2013, 11:55 PM
I'm enjoying reading your responses, it calms me down after waiting for a broken aeroplane to get fixed.

I'm glad I could bring soothing feelings to you. Now lets get back on topic about the presses and all of us out here with differing opinions be they right or wrong.

Kevin Rohrer
August 4, 2013, 11:13 PM
Wow. So much hatred ... even when OP asked for used "single stage" press ...

Okay. ANY press that has 'Lee' on it. :evil:

Kevin Rohrer
August 4, 2013, 11:14 PM
I also hear lots of bad things about the Smart Reloader presses. :barf:

jcwit
August 4, 2013, 11:18 PM
Okay. ANY press that has 'Lee' on it.

What do you base your findings on?:neener:

jcwit
August 4, 2013, 11:20 PM
Lee seems to have carved out a pretty large niche in the reloading community.

jcwit
August 4, 2013, 11:22 PM
I also hear lots of bad things about the Smart Reloader presses.

Ah yes, the Italian Company getting their production done on the Chinese mainland, with very low quality standards.

TexasShooter59
August 4, 2013, 11:37 PM
You know, I don't like Lee either! Using their classic cast breechlock press and those sorry RGB dies, I got this lousy group shown below. I thought they promised "one ragged hole"! :rolleyes:

Scimmia
August 4, 2013, 11:47 PM
You didn't mention what you want to load. If you're just talking pistol rounds, even the cheapest C frame presses would usually get the job done acceptably.

If you're going to load normal rifle rounds, avoid the C frames. I'm not a big fan of the aluminum O frame presses, but they would get the job done if you find one really cheap.

If you're talking magnum rifle rounds, I don't think it's worth dealing with anything less than a quality iron/steel O frame press. Lee Classic Cast, RCBS Rockchucker, etc.

Edit: Ok, I just noticed your post where you said it would be 40 S&W and 38 Special. For those, just about any press will get the job done, although a touch of lube will help the 38s in a C frame.

Constrictor
August 4, 2013, 11:56 PM
OK being as others seem the need to turn this into a bash Lee thread, I'll come out of hiding.

There is nothing at all wrong with the Lee Classic Cast Presses, to think otherwise is nothing less than--well I can't describe it as it will get me in trouble. But for the difference in price

Lee Classic Cast Press -------- $93.98
https://fsreloading.com/lee-precision-classic-cast-press-90998.html

Sorta hard to beat for value. Course if braging right are needed?? And remember Lee is not the only one offering a "quality" press made of Cast Aluminum, ever take a good look at the RCBS Partner?

The Lee Perfect Powder Measure if one takes the time to research it is one of the most accurate measures out their. Many tho seem to have trouble with ball powder with them tho, just as many have trouble with other measures and their cut off.

http://www.sniperforums.com/forum/cartridges-calibers/35463-powder-measure-accuracy-thread.html

http://www.24hourcampfire.com/ubbthreads/ubbthreads.php/topics/7393542/Re_Lee_perfect_powder_measure_

As for those who claim its made of "cheap" plastic, take a close look at your cars dash the next time you go somewhere, or better yet pop the hood even if its a Cadillac and check out all the "cheap" plastic you or the bank owns under there.

Now with all of the above said, just so you'al don't come to the conclusion all I have is "cheap" Lee equipment I also use much in the way of RCBS, Hornady, and Redding equipment. Also much in the way of Sinclair, such as case prepping tools and their Arbor Press, and the Wilson dies they market.

So in closing, a used cast Lee press will serve you well as will just about any cast press from any other manufacturer, in fact even the cast aluminum Lee presses that have not been abused and kept lightly lubed on their wearing surfaces will also serve you well, as will cast aluminum presses from other manufactures that have not been abused and kept lightly lubed.
The repliers to the question posed in this thread have no reason to bash lee, other than the op asked what presses to avoid! Should we not give our honest opioned when asked for it?

Scimmia
August 5, 2013, 12:01 AM
When your opinion is based on either faulty or non existent data, then yes, you should not give your opinion. Especially when the OP doesn't ask for opinions, he asks for facts.

jcwit
August 5, 2013, 12:04 AM
The repliers to the question posed in this thread have no reason to bash lee, other than the op asked what presses to avoid! Should we not give our honest opioned when asked for it?

And what is that opinion based on?

Constrictor
August 5, 2013, 12:17 AM
When your opinion is based on either faulty or non existent data, then yes, you should not give your opinion. Especially when the OP doesn't ask for opinions, he asks for facts.
The op absolutely did ask for opinions, and did not ask them to be backed up by data. When you ask the members on an Internet forums about something, the only answer they can give is their opinion. And for the record my opinion is based on owning several lee presses.

jcwit
August 5, 2013, 12:27 AM
The op absolutely did ask for opinions, and did not ask them to be backed up by data. When you ask the members on an Internet forums about something, the only answer they can give is their opinion. And for the record my opinion is based on owning several lee presses.

OK, so now supply us with what years these Lee presses were acquired and what the models were?

When you ask the members on an Internet forums about something, the only answer they can give is their opinion.

And without facts to back the opinion up it is meaningless, turns into nothing more than a he/she said, he/she said. Lacking any credibility.

Sport45
August 5, 2013, 12:45 AM
Just about any garage sale press should do, except I would stay away from Smart Reloader based on what I've read about their stuff on many forums.

Don't buy it if the ram is rusty or if it doesn't stroke smoothly. Otherwise, if it has the t-slot shell holder as mentioned above and 7/8-14 threads for the dies it should work fine for those cartridges.

Scimmia
August 5, 2013, 01:01 AM
The op absolutely did ask for opinions, and did not ask them to be backed up by data. When you ask the members on an Internet forums about something, the only answer they can give is their opinion. And for the record my opinion is based on owning several lee presses.

He specifically said "I don't know if there were ever presses produced that had major problems, or that were overly complicated, etc." He didn't ask what people's opinion of a good press is, he asked if any specific presses had problems. This is a request for facts, not opinions. Giving him opinions based on bad feelings or people's attempt to justify spending three times as much as they needed to is useless.

Scimmia
August 5, 2013, 01:02 AM
He did in post #9, said .40s&w and .38spl.

Yep, I noticed and edited my post, check the last line :)

FiveInADime
August 5, 2013, 01:11 AM
I have a rusty ram old Rock Chucker... rusty but not pitted. Bunch of cleaning and silicone lubricant and it cranks out accurate ammo just like any other good press.

stargeezer
August 5, 2013, 01:15 AM
If you spend $200 on Lee reloading equipment and load 50,000 rounds (that's about all it will last), your equipment will have cost you 4/10 of a cent per round.

Spend $400 on a RCBS setup and the cost per round will double to 8/10 of a cent per round.

The difference? It will be the 4/10 of a cent per round you'll waste fighting with low quality tools producing inconsistent ammo.

Spend 2 cents per round on Dillon reloading equipment and find out what the rest of us know.

jcwit
August 5, 2013, 01:49 AM
If you spend $200 on Lee reloading equipment and load 50,000 rounds (that's about all it will last), your equipment will have cost you 4/10 of a cent per round.

That sir is a joke. Up until a few years ago 50 thousand rounds was just about a summers amount of firing all loaded at that time with Lee equipment. I no longer shoot is these quantities as I have health reasons preventing this. But the equipment is still working as it did when new and loads as good a quality as it did when new.

My Lee turrent has now loaded more than likely 100's of thousands over the years it has been in use. Both in handgun cartridges and rifle cartridges.

At my age of 70 I see little need to squander monies on a dillion press when my Lee, Hornady, RCBS equipment serves me quite well, as it has for 50 plus years.

And to the OP's question regarding SINGLE STAGE PRESSES, most any of the major manufactures well serve him quite satisfactory.

stargeezer
August 5, 2013, 02:39 AM
I'm surprised that with your vast storehouse of knowledge that you could be unaware that Dillon makes presses that are essentially single stage presses that can be operated as a progressive press. The best of all worlds, the 550.

Next the OP was requesting guidance on brands or specific presses to AVOID. Surely you cannot compare the lowest entry level of Lee's "c" presses to any of the other names in the industry, RCBS, Lyman, Redding or Dillon? Since Lee produces a larger catalog of stuff that functions marginally at best, and a new reloader will be ill equipped to honestly judge what is quality from trash, I advise him to avoid the company that makes the most trash.

I do assure you that Lee does make a couple presses that are fair, one of which you own. Even with it's good points it does fail in a couple areas, such as the limited number of dies it can hold. I compare this to the RCBS turret press I've used for the past five years. The RCBS Rock Chucker was a press I used from the mid 70's loading 1000-2000 a month of 45ACP for the first ten years I owned it, and heaven only knows how many since.

At 70, I certainly would not urge you to buy a Dillon like I did 2 years ago. I'm just 60 and have a lot more to do with my time than to spend days on a single stage loading the same quantity of ammo that I now can load on my Dillon in two or three hours. I'd rather be out shooting.

Things have changed a bit over the years, that's why I buy a new truck every 2-3 years. It's also why I use a computer over a typewriter and instead of spending hours at the library, as I did a long time ago, I now surf the web and find information I need in minutes. Why should I reload ammo like I did 40 years ago?

Scimmia
August 5, 2013, 02:41 AM
Spend 2 cents per round on Dillon reloading equipment and find out what the rest of us know.

And here's what I was talking about with people trying to justify spending more. Elitism, pure and simple, "I spent more so I'm better than you".

For the record, most of my pistol ammo is loaded on a Dillon 650.

stargeezer
August 5, 2013, 02:50 AM
My point was not about elitism friend. It's about making quality ammo in quantity. Using efficient tools to produce ammo.

Waste hours and days on a single stage or crank out 1800 rounds in three hours on my 650. The cost of that is what it is. It's more than a single stage. That's just economics.

Scimmia
August 5, 2013, 02:53 AM
If you read the original post, to even bring up Dillon is beyond ridiculous. That is so far from what the OP is asking, that it can be only taken as bragging. The tone of the statement I quoted is unmistakable.

stargeezer
August 5, 2013, 03:03 AM
Some folks do have problems with economics. But, you seemed to miss that the OP is an accountant of some kind, so I based a reply on economic terms that he would hopefully relate to. For a lot of us, money has less value than our time. I don't have lots of free time or life expectancy, I've got plenty of money. It's economics.

You just need to take the "poor boy" chip of your shoulder.

Scimmia
August 5, 2013, 03:07 AM
No, you just need to realize that one size doesn't fit all. The OP is asking about something he can pick up at a garage sale as cheap as possible to he can try reloading and see if it's something he'll keep doing. Recommending he spend $400+ on the press alone is so far outside of what he was asking it's ludacris.

You say I need to take the "poor boy" chip off my shoulder, I say you actually need to listen to what people are asking and not blindly recommend something completely inappropriate.

limpingbear
August 5, 2013, 03:24 AM
A few years ago, justbefore the first big ammo shortage I bought a Lee cast single stage kit form Midway that came with one set of dies, thier perfect powder measure a loading book and a balance beam scale and thier auto prime tool along with some other odds and ends. I think I paid about 125 dollars shipped. I never had a problem with it in all the time i had it. My buddy gave me a rockchucker and i shipped the Lee to my brother in law because he was getting into loading. I still have and use the powder measure and have had no problems at all after thousands of loaded rounds. In fact most of the die sets i own are Lee. Keep an eye on Midwayusa, and dont let the Lee bashers scare you off.

Constrictor
August 5, 2013, 06:17 AM
OK, so now supply us with what years these Lee presses were acquired and what the models were?



And without facts to back the opinion up it is meaningless, turns into nothing more than a he/she said, he/she said. Lacking any credibility.
I'm not going to list my qualifications to you but let's just say I've been loading for 40 years and yes I still have some Lee presses.

Constrictor
August 5, 2013, 06:25 AM
He specifically said "I don't know if there were ever presses produced that had major problems, or that were overly complicated, etc." He didn't ask what people's opinion of a good press is, he asked if any specific presses had problems. This is a request for facts, not opinions. Giving him opinions based on bad feelings or people's attempt to justify spending three times as much as they needed to is useless.
Of course the actual truth is the op asked if there are any used presses to avoid. He didn't ask scientist or experts, he asked regular joes on the net. By definition all you can get from an average Joe is an opinion.
No one is saying you can't make ammo on a certain brand of press, but when asked which ones are better or which to avoid its perfectly acceptable to give our opinion on which brands we have found from personal experience to be less than desirable we should do so. And it appears quite a few agree with me.

jcwit
August 5, 2013, 08:01 AM
I'm not going to list my qualifications to you but let's just say I've been loading for 40 years and yes I still have some Lee presses.

So that's implying the Lee equipment is the earlier cast aluminum presses. Why skirt around the issue, come right out with it.

By definition all you can get from an average Joe is an opinion.


And in getting a reply back from the "average joe" I would expect more than just an opinion, I would expect a well founded and intelligent reply, not a reply "Anything but a Lee", Then why not "anything but a Lee" what is the specific problems with a Lee, or is it all about bragging rights.

In the OP's own words below, sorta says it all, unless I'm missing something.

Since I am new and also not wanting to spend a lot of money I will only be looking at single stages.

My main theme is that most all of the manufactures make presses that would suit the OP's requirements even Lee. Of course remembering, single stage is what he is asking for, not progressive or even turrent.

I've got plenty of money.

that's why I buy a new truck every 2-3 years.

You just need to take the "poor boy" chip of your shoulder.

I think we get it now.

Constrictor
August 5, 2013, 08:17 AM
So that's implying the Lee equipment is the earlier cast aluminum presses. Why skirt around the issue, come right out with it.



And in getting a reply back from the "average joe" I would expect more than just an opinion, I would expect a well founded and intelligent reply, not a reply "Anything but a Lee", Then why not "anything but a Lee" what is the specific problems with a Lee, or is it all about bragging rights.

In the OP's own words below, sorta says it all, unless I'm missing something.



My main theme is that most all of the manufactures make presses that would suit the OP's requirements even Lee. Of course remembering, single stage is what he is asking for, not progressive or even turrent.







I think we get it now.
I've used Lee equipment that has been manufactured at least over a 40 year span
But since the op asked for our
Opinions I don't feel the need to
Roll out a list of degrees for you.
Lee equipment is kind of like an
Old Chrysler. It will work but if
Someone asks me which brand
Of car is prefer to avoid I'd say Chrysler.
No one is recommended a progressive.
I love my rock chuckers.
.

Arkansas Paul
August 5, 2013, 11:27 AM
The repliers to the question posed in this thread have no reason to bash lee, other than the op asked what presses to avoid! Should we not give our honest opioned when asked for it?

If that opinion is based on real world experience that you personally have, then yes you should give it. If your opinion is based on what you read on the internet by some moron who says if it isn't blue it's junk, then no you should not give your opinion because it's just spreading nonsense.


If you spend $200 on Lee reloading equipment and load 50,000 rounds (that's about all it will last), your equipment will have cost you 4/10 of a cent per round.

Spend $400 on a RCBS setup and the cost per round will double to 8/10 of a cent per round.

The difference? It will be the 4/10 of a cent per round you'll waste fighting with low quality tools producing inconsistent ammo.


Yeah, I really should get better equipment. All I can get is lousy groups like this with my cheap crap Lee equipment. And to think for 0.04 a round more I could improve it.

.308 Win
http://i902.photobucket.com/albums/ac223/prgann/1019111325.jpg (http://s902.photobucket.com/user/prgann/media/1019111325.jpg.html)

.243 Win
http://i902.photobucket.com/albums/ac223/prgann/photo13.jpg (http://s902.photobucket.com/user/prgann/media/photo13.jpg.html)

I've got to get me some high quality equipment so I can stop shooting such inconsistent groups.

Bush Pilot
August 5, 2013, 11:53 AM
I love it when these threads turn into a pissing match where the Lee guys do their best to pretend Lee presses are as good as Dillon.

To the OP, ANY single stage press that's in decent shape will make ammo that will shoot well in your guns. If you find a Lee or RCBS press that fits your budget, BUY IT!

Arkansas Paul
August 5, 2013, 12:00 PM
I love it when these threads turn into a pissing match where the Lee guys do their best to pretend Lee presses are as good as Dillon.

I haven't seen a single post where anyone insinuates anything remotely resembling that.

Personally I love it when people who own Dillons think everybody else's equipment is pure crap. It's a two way street friend.

I don't have a doubt that Dillon is the best there is and when my funds allow it, I will likely own one. I own RCBS equipment and would no doubt rank it above Lee equipment. However the statement has been made that Lee is low quality equipment that produced inconsistent ammunition and that is simply not the case, and I have shown evidence to prove that it is not.

The VAST majority of people who say otherwise have never used Lee equipment and simply spew forth the garbage they read by the bashers.

Also, the point is getting lost in this thread, and its partly my fault, that someone new to reloading is inquiring about presses to avoid. I encourage him to not believe everything he hears. While Lee is certainly not the best there is, most of us who use it find it to be perfectly good equipment for the majority of our needs. If you get into this reloading thing, you will likely end up with all different colors on your bench.

Constrictor
August 5, 2013, 12:26 PM
I'm not sure why you even bring up my experience or lack therof when i told you i have 40 years aexperience with lee equipment already. I currently own 4 lee presses, but in all fairness i will admit i mostly have blue presses and i do love them the best.

Arkansas Paul
August 5, 2013, 12:55 PM
Oh yeah.
I'm getting low on a few things. I'll be over to load up some more stuff with your components soon.

CatManDo
August 5, 2013, 01:21 PM
I've loaded ammo since the 1980's and I started with Lee. I got up to a total of 6 Lee Presses and quite frankly almost gave myself a stroke trying to make ANY of the Lee Progressives consistently work. I am down to 3 Lee Presses at present; two Challenger Breech lock presses and a lowly C press. Out of all the Lee presses I have used the Challenger Breech Lock presses are the best. I haven't used the Classic Cast but if I found one at a reasonable price I would buy it. With that said, my most favorite press is my Dillon 650; quality of the first order. Nary a problem with her over the last 4 years of service.

Arkansas Paul
August 5, 2013, 01:29 PM
^ I have heard that the Lee progressives take a LOT of tinkering with to run right. I wouldn't buy one, but would take any of the single stages.

ranger335v
August 5, 2013, 02:01 PM
It's always interesting to read web experts appraising presses by brand based on - usually - a single example, and it's frequently wrong. Most makers have a variety of presses and they are NOT identical in performance by color. As a home shop machinest I have the tools to measure press flex and I've done so on quite a few.

* Old C presses flex much less than most prople think. The only C press currently on the market, Lee's tiny alum alloy "Reloader", flexes very little under normal FL sizing loads (much less than my old RC 2 under identical loads).

* Iron O presses flex much more than most people think; greater total strength does equal total rigidity.

* Lee's alum alloy presses flex much less than cast iron under identical loads before they snap - which won't happen with normal reloading, but nothing's fool proof to a sufficently talented fool.

* Cast iron flexes quite easily to a point, after which it stops until it snaps. (I've seen web photos of three Rockchuckers with broken top straps; clear evidence of a highly qualified fool.)

* Alum alloy presses flex very little before they snap. (I've seen no photos of broken Lee top straps.)

* Any press ever made will last two or three life times if the ram is kept clean and oiled.

zxcvbob
August 5, 2013, 02:31 PM
I like Lee equipment, and have quite a bit of it. I would not buy a used Lee progressive press (there's a reason someone is getting rid of it, and I don't want to find out)

jcwit
August 5, 2013, 05:17 PM
I would not buy a used Lee progressive press (there's a reason someone is getting rid of it, and I don't want to find out)

I also question the Lee progressive press, I've never owned one however, and I have enough trouble tinkering around with lifes problems as it is.

With that said, again being as the OP only asked about single stage presses it is a moot point.

armedaccountant
August 5, 2013, 05:32 PM
To those of you who posted constructive advice I appreciate it. I will take the actual advice into consideration. I will probably look for "C" press or something similar that accepts current shell holders and current dies. If I like this hobby I will look to upgrade soon.

Unfortunately this thread has deteriorated and is quickly becoming worthless. I think it is unfortunate when a legitimate post turns into a shouting match. I tend to avoid other forums because I prefer HighRoad types of posts. I am asking that the Mods lock this thread.

Larry Ashcraft
August 5, 2013, 05:41 PM
Closed at OP request.

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