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Turret for .223?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by jhansman, Sep 19, 2008.

  1. jhansman

    jhansman Well-Known Member

    I am beginning to make a boatload of .223 for my Saiga AK; my single-stage press is showing its age and the time spent is getting longer. Would a turret press speed things up for me much? Right now I am hand priming, funnel charging, manually seating bullets, and crimping. Once my brass is ready to roll, how much time might I save going the turret route? TIA.
  2. tokarev762

    tokarev762 Active Member

    Curious also. I just loaded 350 5.56 rounds on RockChucker and I've been thinking of a Lee classic 4 holer myself.
  3. jhansman

    jhansman Well-Known Member

    Yep, that's the press I'm eyeing as well. Just don't know if turrets are the choice for rifle ammo. Seems like a lot of handgun loaders use 'em though.
  4. Sport45

    Sport45 Well-Known Member

    I load .223 on a Lyman Spar-T. I'm not a good enough shooter to say if it causes any accuracy problems. I do have to lean into the handle pretty hard to completely size them to drop into my case gauge. (Using Lee RGB dies)
  5. jhansman

    jhansman Well-Known Member

    I will probably continue to use my single stage press for my .223 bolt gun rounds. I am just thinking bulk ammo here; I have several thousand pieces of LC brass I want to get loaded and stored, so I'm hoping a turret press can shave off a chunk of time. Any AK or AR shooters out there who use a turret, and if so, is it saving you time and trouble?
  6. kennedy

    kennedy Well-Known Member

    I use a lee turret press for my .223 ar, I have a three hole and need a 4 hole, so I use 2 turrets and it works just fine, I also use the lee auto disk for powder with the charging die, works consistant and its fast.
  7. RustyFN

    RustyFN Well-Known Member

    I load 223 on a classic turret. Once the case prep is done and I start to load I can load around 250 per hour.
  8. jhansman

    jhansman Well-Known Member

    Thanks to all for the replies. Turret loading it is!
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2008
  9. bullseye308

    bullseye308 Well-Known Member

    I load 223 on a Loadmaster with no problems, I also use a Lee Reloader press to load them on if I have lots of time to kill or am just resizing a bunch of brass. Either will work just fine, just depends how fast you wanna gir-r-done.
  10. everallm

    everallm Well-Known Member

    Just started reloading 9mm and .223, expect to add .45 and .308 next year.

    I use the 4 hole turret from Lee and an very happy.

    One thing I find speeds the process for me, is to load the primers, via a Lee Auto Prime, off the turret. I then run about 200 an hour without killing myself.
  11. Galil5.56

    Galil5.56 Well-Known Member

    Any thought about a Dillon 550B? A lot faster than 4 strokes per round if that matters, plus you manually index it and can be used like a single stage if you like. I use my 550B for .223, and find it more than acceptable.

    Yes, the price is higher, but should you absolutely hate it, getting back damn near what you paid for it is a nice benefit as is the warranty. Not a slam to LEE, as their classic turret seems to get pretty high marks, and many years ago I used a 3 hole turret that did OK.
  12. BigJakeJ1s

    BigJakeJ1s Well-Known Member

    The Hornady LNL AP progressive can also be used single-stage, by simply removing the dies you don't want to use (quick and easy with the LNL bushings). Then it will still auto-index, ejecting your processed brass for you. You could even use the optional case feeder while "single staging".

  13. marchboom

    marchboom Active Member

    Having used all types of presses, I would recommend getting a progressive press (Dillon or Hornady). All the turret will save you is a little time in changing the dies. If you are at the point where you think a single stage is too slow, then you are at the stage in life where you need a progressive. Believe me on this one. Once you try a progressive (don't buy cheap, either), you will know what I mean. And you can use it as a single stage if you want.

    But whatever you buy, don't buy cheap. Get quality equipment. This stuff will last decades if properly maintained. Amortize that over your reloading lifetime (and your kid's lifetime) and it is very inexpensive to buy quality stuff that won't always need adjustment and parts breakage and add frustration to the process.
  14. Griz44

    Griz44 Well-Known Member

    I use a Loadmaster for my 30.06. The progressive cranks them out PDQ with good quality. .223 should be even faster. If you are shooting a lot, then some type of progressive is a big boost.
  15. RustyFN

    RustyFN Well-Known Member

    I just wanted to post this to give you an idea what it's like to load 223 on the classic turret. I load close to this and load around 250 per hour, maybe a little more. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zOpN9iYOyE8

    Last edited: Sep 21, 2008
  16. strat81

    strat81 Well-Known Member

    I load .223 and 7.62x39 on my Lee Classic Turret. It's fast enough for me. That is, I wouldn't be able to afford the components if I could reload faster. :)
  17. counterclockwise

    counterclockwise Well-Known Member

    I use an RCBS turret and think it does save a little time over single stage. Die set up, sizer/decap, seater/crimp, and for 1X mil reloads the RCBS swage can be left in the turret table without going through set up again for each process.

    The downside is keeping the turret table from tilting under high ram pressures. Some other turret press designs may minimize the tilt problem.
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2008
  18. SSN Vet

    SSN Vet Well-Known Member

    that's the same for me....

    never timed myself, but case prep is still by far the longest leg .....
  19. strat81

    strat81 Well-Known Member

    Not including prep and case sizing, if I boogie I can do around 130-150 rifle rounds per minute. Pistol, I'm at 175.

    If you plan on reloading .223, you'll spend plenty of time removing primer crimp. Also, buy an RCBS X-Die (no need to get small base). The X-Die helps prevent case stretch during sizing thus allowing you to skip trimming. For trimming on the cheap and fast, get a Possum Hollow Quick Case Trimmer.
  20. highlander 5

    highlander 5 Well-Known Member

    I think we are mixing apples and oranges here. When you say turret I think of a press that the shell holder is stationary and the die are rotated above is a circular die holder as in the Lyman Spar T press or are you talking a PROGRESSIVE press such as the LnL or Dillon 550/650? If it's the latter the LnL or either of the Dillon presses are the way to go. I load 223 on my 650 and it's pretty accurate as far as I can tell. Out of my Ruger M77 MK II the best group I've sho is 3/8" at 100 yds. 3/4"-1" the norm on my better days.

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