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Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by grafsk8er, Jun 26, 2007.

  1. grafsk8er

    grafsk8er Well-Known Member

    i've been reloading shot shells for a while. i'm going to get into reloading rifles, and unfortunately my grandfather got rid of his reloading set. i want to buy my own and i just want to know what i need to get started. i know i need a press, dies, scales, and some other stuff. but i really don't know the first thing about reloading rifle cartridges. can somebody steer me into the right direction as to what exactly i need, maybe prices, and companies to look into? any help would be greatly appreciated. thanks
  2. 50 Shooter

    50 Shooter member


    Buy yourself a few books on reloading, get the latest edition of The ABC's of Reloading. Basically get all the tools for reloading and do some reading, if you know someone that reloads ask for some help to get started.

    Equipment and supply prices will vary, shop around to see who has the best prices.
  3. Dr.Rob

    Dr.Rob Moderator Staff Member

    You can do a lot with a LEE loader or RCBS single stage, esp. when you are talking rifle ammo.

    Speer and RCBS have good 'intro' books available at most gunshops.

    I did a LOT of reloading with a single stage press before I ever bought a progressive one from Dillon.

    PS I'm going to move this to RELOADING, we have a seperate forum for it.

    Thing is with LEE dies and a press you can get started for under $100... it's very functional.

    TWO things you will want are a good set of dial calipers and a good scale.
  4. Otto

    Otto Well-Known Member

    Here's a kit for $229, it's a good start for rifles.

  5. grafsk8er

    grafsk8er Well-Known Member

    thanks alot otto, it's exactly everything i need. as far as dies, you need at least 2 dies to reload a cartridge, correct? correct me if i'm mistaken. thanks

    oh, and also, what's the difference between a full length die set, a neck die set, full length sizer, neck sizer die, seater, and trim die? And if i go into reloading, do i need to buy all these different dies?
  6. Ol` Joe

    Ol` Joe Well-Known Member

    The best thing to do is get a good manual, Lyman is very good for a starter although Speer, Nosler, Hornady also are fine. If you can afford it, more then one book isn`t too many to have. "The ABCs of Reloading" is another exellent choice for a beginner. The books will get you started on tooling, "how to", component choice, accuracy tips, ect and are well worth the time spent reading them.
    I would skip the data sections until I read the text and understood it. The difference between rifle and shotgun isn`t all that much, but there are a few new steps and things to watch for. Don` be afraid to ask if you don`t understand or have questions about something, we all have been there and are willing to help as best we can.
    As for companies to look at for tools, try RCBS, Lyman, Lee, Redding, and Forster for presses, dies, scales, ect. Prices can vary depending on your pocketbook and what you re willing to spend. I believe Lee still make a reloading kit one uses a mallet in place of a press. The cost is likely around $15-$20. Forsters Co-Ax press is over $225 by its self, dies extra. Do some online shopping and you will get a idea of what is out there for what money. Try these websites for tools, components, and prices.


    For up to date data go to the powder manufactures web sites, They don`t list everything thy have but most of it is there.
    For Hodgdon, IMR and Winchester.

    Good luck
  7. Otto

    Otto Well-Known Member

    You're welcome. Yes, at least two dies are required to load rifle cartridges.
    In addition to the kit, you'll need dies, shellholders, a caliper, and a case gauge to ensure that your finished rounds meets SAAMI dimensions. Eye protection is a must.
    You should buy the full length die set which includes the full length sizer.
    Neck sizer dies are designed to preserve the fit of 'fire forming' and should only be used on cases fired in your gun. Neck sizing is not recommended for autoloaders, slide or lever action guns.
    In respect to trim dies, I prefer case trimmers (like a Forster). But either way you'll need a way to trim cases. I almost never recommend Lee products but they sell a trimmer for $6 (you'll need to use their shellholder, though).
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2007
  8. Wedge

    Wedge Well-Known Member

    I started with the Lee Anniversary Kit.

    I am still using said Lee Anniversary Kit.

    I like it. .45 Colt and soon 9mm. Yes it is slow, but it is a fun hobby by itself so I really don't mind. My time is actually worth quite a bit, but spending 3 hours on a Saturday or Sunday helps relax me out. Sure I only make 150-200 rounds in that time but they work and I'm relaxed and ready to face the week.
  9. grafsk8er

    grafsk8er Well-Known Member

    say you have a RCBS press, should you only buy RCBS dies? or are all dies universal?
  10. Wedge

    Wedge Well-Known Member

    Most dies are universal. The Dillon SDB is an exception and uses non-standard dies.
  11. grafsk8er

    grafsk8er Well-Known Member

    alright, what makes one die different from another? cause i was looking at them, and to me, they all look the same, but vary in prices.
  12. alex9328

    alex9328 Well-Known Member

    Starting to Reloading, Great

    I am have been loading alot of Handgun loads lately. My best advise is to shop around for good used stuff, any of the Auction Site will do,
    Press, trimmer, powder drop, dies etc. Checkout a reloading book out of local library. Do a little research before you place your money on the table.

    I have seen great values on reloading gear in Pawnshops and the local gun stores. I guess you could buy new, and not worry about missing or worn parts etc. But keep in mind that when someone, that has reloaded for a while is sell his gear,The seller would like to see his joy gotto someone how well its use. Moreover He might let it cheap and through in a few extras.

    I do a lot of hand press work outside on lawn with Lee Speed Dies, But I have a turret press when I want a little more volume. (9mm)

    I have not had much luck in Estates Sales.

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