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223 reloading value

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by General Tso, Aug 15, 2010.

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  1. General Tso

    General Tso member

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    I can reload 223 for .30/rnd using purchased once-fired brass. With free brass it comes to .21/rnd. I can buy Tula for .26/rnd. Worth it?

    Plus I would have to buy the dies and associated equipment, and the time. I already reload pistol carts.
     
  2. TonyAngel

    TonyAngel Member

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    The costs aren't the only thing to consider. You also have to consider the time. The actual loading isn't bad, but case prep can be really time consuming. If you shop around, you can actually do better than .26 a round for plinking ammo. I shoot Silver Bear and you can get that stuff for around $230 a thousand.

    I only load precision ammo for my .223. Plinking ammo, I just buy and not have to bother with the cases.
     
  3. wanderinwalker

    wanderinwalker Member

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    I think you should be able to do a bit better on the reloading cost by shopping around some more. I just ran a calculation the other night and I can load .223 with Varget and MATCH bullets for $0.23/rd, using free brass, a little more buying once fired and figuring 6 firings before it gets scrapped.

    Of course, this assumes buying powder by the 8-lb jug and not 1-lb canisters. And this is using 69gr Nosler HPBTs I bought from Midsouth Shooters Supply for $140/1000.
     
  4. kutter

    kutter Member

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  5. medalguy

    medalguy Member

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    Yep you can loaad for a lot less unless you want match quality and use free brass or your own brass. If you don't have any brass, check your local police range and see if they will give you a bucket of brass. I just checked a few of my favorite suppliers and I found the following components:

    Primers at Powder Valley (Wolf) .018 ea
    Powder at Lowder Valley $135/8 lb .06 ea
    Bullets Hornady at Pat's Reloading .08 ea
    Total per round .163 ea

    If you shop around and find surplus bullets and pulldown powder it's several cents cheaper per round. I'm using pulldown powder I bought two years ago for less than $8 per pound, and pulled bullets I paid under .04 each for. That makes my casual plinking loads come out around .09 each. Agreed I can't duplicate that today but I can come pretty darn close.
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2010
  6. UltimateReloader

    UltimateReloader Member

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    A few reasons to reload:
    1. Cost (not always a savings however... for 44 mag, you bet!)
    2. Enjoyment (subjective, depends on your personality)
    3. Control over components, tailoring to your firearm

    Plinking- why not just buy?

    Varminting- I would only use reloads developed for max accuracy for my rifle...
     
  7. UltimateReloader

    UltimateReloader Member

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    One more thing to factor into your decision- your equipment will retain ~75% of its value used depending on the make. So, if you're looking at your "net cost" you can factor in the fact that your equipment is "money in the bank" if you decide not to reload later.
     
  8. ranger335v

    ranger335v Member

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    "Worth it?"

    You're asking the reloading forum on an outdoors site if loading is "worth it?" Wonder what the answers will be!
     
  9. qajaq59

    qajaq59 Member

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    Do you already have the press, scale, etc so that all you have to buy is a set of dies? If so I'd load it. I haven't shot anything but my own loads in decades.
     
  10. CraigC
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    CraigC Member

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    Consider the quality difference between the cheapest junk you can buy that still goes bang and your finest handloads that are tailored to your rifle.
     
  11. JoeMal

    JoeMal Member

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    You can reload precision rounds that cost $20-30 a box in the stores for the price of 'cheap' plinking ammo. Definitely worth it.
     
  12. Bovice

    Bovice Member

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    Federal Bulk 100 packs of .223 are about .40 cents per round. Reloading, you can just about cut that in half. And the accuracy goes up big time, if your rifle is up to it. And that was just using either brass I got from factory ammo or range brass. I've also used once-fired LC brass, same results.

    I don't shoot the steel cased stuff because of the mess it makes, and it's also not reloadable so I don't bother.
     
  13. Dnaltrop

    Dnaltrop Member

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    The tipping point as it was explained to me as a child.

    "yes I could reload that, but I'd rather be spending my time reloading these larger rounds that cost more" (my great uncle pressing out .38's and explaining the works)

    If you shoot a lot of it, and your time can't be better spent on another project. Go for it.

    If you have a ton of two-buck-a-shot stuff to replenish, and it's about cost the cost.. keep the stuff you only save money in high volume for later.
     
  14. smurf hunter

    smurf hunter Member

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    Right now I'm reloading .357mag. I can load Hornady XTP rounds with free brass for just under $0.20/rnd. That's small qty retail costs. I know if I scale out my component buys, and switch to cheap cast bullets, I can get that down to $0.14/rnd.

    The manufactured XTP round can cost ~$0.40 each - that's a premium round that I've made cheap enough for bulk practice.
     
  15. cougar1717

    cougar1717 Member

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    Is it worth it? - It really depends on your time and your shooting style. If you're shooting style is to spray a whole bunch of lead in a hurry, it is simpler to just buy the ammo. Loading 223 is more tedious than straight wall pistol cartridges since each case has to be lubed, sized, trimmed as necessary, lube removed, primed, then loaded. I know a reloader who loads other rifle cartridges, but will not load 223 because he doesn't think its' worth the time. IMHO - if you're looking to load the cheapest loads you can find with pulldown powder, pulled bullets, mixed cases, etc., you might as well buy cheap plinking ammo and save yourself the loading time. But, it is worth it to me to make high quality accurate ammo using extruded powders and ballistic tip bullets.
     
  16. dwwright

    dwwright Member

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    Our local range doesn't allow the wolf or tula brands due to the steel in the bullet (if magnet sticks, can't shoot it). So the cheapest I could find was about .50 a round average. By the time I bought some Lee equipment and supplies, I've made up the overhead in about 1000 rounds. Been much happier with my own loads and accuracy has improved.
     
  17. shawn62

    shawn62 Member

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    I am reloading my own for .17 cents each with my own brass or .21 cents if I buy once fired.
     
  18. rduckwor

    rduckwor Member

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    Is a 0.264" four round group worth it? Hell yes it is!

    RMD
     
  19. Sidewinder72

    Sidewinder72 Member

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    I think it is a personal preferance. For myself it is definatly worth it. I enjoy all aspects of reloading. Accuracy and getting to shoot more are the best perks, prepping brass is my least favorite task, but it must be done. I love reloading in general.
     
  20. Hondo 60
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    Hondo 60 Member

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    That right there is the key! Once my barrel heats up I can't use Tula ammo. The varnish starts to melt & I get all kinds of FTEs (Failure To Eject) usually about 4-5 per 20 rd magazine. This morning it was in the upper 60s so I tried 2 boxes of Tula. They worked fine.

    My reloads on the other hand NEVER give me FTEs! It doesn't matter what the weather is like. Plus I get to decide the bullet weight & the brand/weight of powder.

    I bought the Tula for $3.49 a box (plus tax). I'd be hard pressed to reload for that, but my reloads go bang w/o having to clear the jams.
     
  21. gutterman

    gutterman Member

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    It really depends on how much you shoot. I enjoy just the solitude of reloading, as it requires you to focus on exactly what you are doing and not everything else out there. If you are saving a little $$ by doing so , then more the better!
     
  22. dawico

    dawico Member

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    There is one more factor not mentioned yet. When ammo was hard to find and impossible to get a good deal on, I had thousands of rounds of componants ready to be loaded. Don't compare the price of one round to another, compare the price of thousands of rounds that you have bought componants for in bulk. At that time, the cost of a round wasn't near as important as the fact that I had ammo available.
     
  23. RustyFN

    RustyFN Member

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    Did somebody say plinking ammo? These are todays prices. This is a quote from this thread. http://glocktalk.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1236734

     
  24. kutter

    kutter Member

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    This was recently covered in other threads, but here it is again:

    This is the thread: http://thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=530832
     
  25. atomd

    atomd Member

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    For plinking rounds here's what I'd be spending. There are better deals if you want to buy a specific item like pulled bullets or powder for 1/2 price. Those are great deals and can drop the price a LOT. But let's just say I use the stuff I can normally buy that's not on sale or closeout.

    55 grain bullets (new) surplus $75 shipped.
    8lbs of H335 $140 bought locally
    Primers $30 bought locally
    Brass is pretty much free. If I bought once fired it would add .04-.05 per round for the first time I bought it but really it's spread out over the life of the case which can be used multiple times.

    That's about .17 per round and it included shipping on the bullets. Not too bad. If you have to order the powder or primers online the hazmat fee is going to kill ya.

    Where can you get Ramshot TAC so cheap? I know it's cheaper than a lot of brands but that's real low.
     
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