Case prep centers...

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Hardtarget, Sep 29, 2017.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Hardtarget

    Hardtarget Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2002
    Messages:
    3,102
    Location:
    Nashville, Tn.
    I've been thinking about these...not sure what to do. There are always "good/better/best" so if you would just point me in the right direction, I'd appreciate it! If there is a "don't bother with this brand"...I'd like to know as well. Thanks, in advance. I'd rather only buy once ( and be happy ) and just get on with the loading! I've been looking but new stuff comes on the market and I may have missed a good choice.


    Mark
     
  2. DRAINSMITH

    DRAINSMITH Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2014
    Messages:
    408
    Location:
    s/w iowa
    I (or should I say my 13-year-old granddaughter) use the Hornady Lock-N-Load case prep center. I like it. The downside is it is about $450.00. The upside is it will trim the brass, chamfer, deburr. neck brush, and take care of the primer pockets all in one sitting. And the way it is designed the trimmings are caught and don't make a mess. The key to this prep center is don't use a heavy hand. Let it do the work. Some try to manhandle it and will strip the gears. I have not had this problem, and I have used it for three years without a problem.
     
    tcj likes this.
  3. brasscollector

    brasscollector Member

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2016
    Messages:
    357
    I've had the Lyman for at least 4 years now. Nothing fancy but it doesn't move around on the bench (unless you want it to) and has enough torque for de-milling 223/308 brass. I have no complaints but also have no experience with the other brands to compare, perhaps I'm missing out on something.
     
  4. Cheesemaker

    Cheesemaker Member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Messages:
    301
    Location:
    North Carolina
    I use the RCBS - it is OK, but it is the first and only one I have used.
    I have heard good things about the Frankford Arsenal Platinum series tool. It maybe worth a look - and see what others say about it.
     
  5. daboone

    daboone Member

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2009
    Messages:
    179
    Location:
    Phoenix, Kealakekua
    I've had the RCBS for at least 8 years and it is still working perfectly. A friend recently got the Lyman's and it's nice too. It has a larger foot print and is maybe a little quieter.
     
  6. Doublehelix

    Doublehelix Member

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2016
    Messages:
    1,059
    I use the Lyman, works great.
     
  7. Reloadron
    • Contributing Member

    Reloadron Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2012
    Messages:
    8,586
    Location:
    Cleveland, Ohio USA
    I guess the number of features you want in a case prep center is proportional to the cost. I never used one for decades and several years ago my brother gave me a RCBS Trim Mate Case Prep Center which works out well enough for my needs. I pretty much use it for chamfering and debur of case mouths as well as cleaning primer pockets. It works well and does what it is supposed to do and again I went decades never feeling a need for one.

    Ron
     
  8. DazedandConfuzed

    DazedandConfuzed Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2016
    Messages:
    90
    Location:
    San Jose, CA.
    Another Lyman user.
     
  9. hdwhit

    hdwhit Member

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2015
    Messages:
    4,883
    Location:
    Salem, AR
    The Hornady Lock-N-Load or RCBS Universal seem to be really well thought-out, but expensive, solutions to the issue of case preparation.
     
  10. X-Ring

    X-Ring Member

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2015
    Messages:
    315
    Location:
    Ohio
    I have been using the Lyman for several years, and I have been happy with it. It came with all the necessary tools and I got it for a great price $100.00
     
  11. Gtscotty

    Gtscotty Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2007
    Messages:
    3,442
  12. groundsclown

    groundsclown Member

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2011
    Messages:
    122
    Location:
    OH
    I currently use a small hornady LnL trio & a seperate forster case trimmer. If I were to do it again without a doubt I'd go for the FA Plat. (still going to)
     
  13. tcoz

    tcoz Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2013
    Messages:
    1,268
    Location:
    South Carolina Lowcountry
    I have the Frankford Arsenal Platinum. It works well but I don't use it for trimming, preferring instead to trim cases with a Wilson case trimmer. It also can't be used with cases that don't have a shoulder, such as 30 Carbine. 300 BLK cases are a little hard to trim because they're so short and it's hard to get a good grip on them.
     
  14. Hokie_PhD

    Hokie_PhD Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2017
    Messages:
    2,725
    Location:
    Central Virginia
    Do prep centers offer anything to justify their expense? I ask as to me they seem expensive compared to other options. So either I'm missing something or I'm missing something ;-) !!!!!!
     
  15. Reloadron
    • Contributing Member

    Reloadron Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2012
    Messages:
    8,586
    Location:
    Cleveland, Ohio USA
    Well as I mentioned in my post #7, I guess it depends on what features you want and if you want them automated. I went decades using a #2 Phillips screwdriver to remove crimps on GI brass with a few twist and did fine. Then I got a case prep center as a gift so started using it. Since it was free there was no expense. Maybe I would have eventually bought one. Making great accurate ammunition has been done for decades less many of the newer tools. I figure tools are a priority. For example do I want a good case concentricity gauge or case prep center? Which will aid my reloading more or better? The need vs nice to have thing comes along. :) I guess only the shooter can decide when in alignment with his or her pocketbook.

    Ron
     
  16. Gtscotty

    Gtscotty Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2007
    Messages:
    3,442
    I'd say it's one of my best reloading expenses because it got me back to enjoying reloading. I usually shoot 30-80 rds of various bottle neck cartridges a week, most weeks, but I really despise all the case prep required for rifle cartridges. With my case prep center I wind up breezing through all of my least favorite parts of reloading. In the grand scheme of things, $120 was really nothing given all the time and frustration it saves me.
     
  17. tcoz

    tcoz Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2013
    Messages:
    1,268
    Location:
    South Carolina Lowcountry
    Doing case prep with hand tools isn't an option for me because of severe arthritis in my hands. If I'm going to use a powered tool anyway I'd prefer to use one that allows me to attach as many tools as possible and takes up as little space as possible. That's my only justification.
     
    Gtscotty likes this.
  18. Hardtarget

    Hardtarget Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2002
    Messages:
    3,102
    Location:
    Nashville, Tn.
    Thanks for all the input! tcoz is right with me as far as my reasons for this thread. I'm not "there" but I can feel the problems coming on in my hands...so I'm thinking I should look closer at these machines. Figure out what will help the most extending my reloading. At 67 I still enjoy loading, shooting, hunting...all the fun parts of my outdoor time! Thanks again! You guys are great!

    Mark
     
  19. Doublehelix

    Doublehelix Member

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2016
    Messages:
    1,059
    I ream crimp primers, use the pocket uniformer for brass that has the flash hole punched backwards (I am talking to you IMI, both crimped and punched backwards), pocket primer cleaner (rarely), and I even will ream poorly punched and ragged flash holes.

    Mainly used for crimped primer pockets however. Totally worth it just for that alone. I use my Lyman case prep station with the Hornady reamer. Best combo I have found. That Hornady reamer is solid gold!
     
  20. tcoz

    tcoz Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2013
    Messages:
    1,268
    Location:
    South Carolina Lowcountry
    I found that the FA prep center didn't do a great job of removing military crimps, mainly because it didn't rotate fast enough. It's much faster to chuck the RCBS military crimp remover in my cordless drill and use a higher speed.
     
  21. Hokie_PhD

    Hokie_PhD Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2017
    Messages:
    2,725
    Location:
    Central Virginia
    Thanks for all of the comments
    It's interesting to hear people's perspectives on tools.
    I know my view is that to begin one can start with some pretty basic stuff and make good safe ammo.
    Once the basics are learned then we begin to learn what we like, dislike, would like to have, don't need etc.

    So if someone told me I needed to buy a case prep center when I started I probably wouldn't have. But as I reload more, it's nice to learn how folks are more efficient and how they make the process more enjoyable to them.
     
  22. Sunray

    Sunray Member

    Joined:
    May 17, 2003
    Messages:
    11,573
    Location:
    London, Ont.
    "...There are always "good/better/best"..." No, there isn't. Kits just let you buy all the bits and pieces at once. Some of said bits and pieces may not be necessary though. Prices are usually less than the total paid if you buy all the bits and pieces separately too.
    "...cordless drill and use a higher speed..." Too easy to remove too much.
     
  23. tcoz

    tcoz Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2013
    Messages:
    1,268
    Location:
    South Carolina Lowcountry
    Sunray, the RCBS military crimp remover has a hard stop and doesn't let you remove too much. At least not so far in the thousands I've processed.
     
  24. DRAINSMITH

    DRAINSMITH Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2014
    Messages:
    408
    Location:
    s/w iowa
    Now I still have a Hornady Cam-Lock case trimmer mounted on my bench, but I don't use it anymore because of all the brass shavings that are left all around it on the bench. I use to use a handheld camfer and deburrer after I trimmed the brass. Now I don't know where it happened but I got a piece of brass shaving embedded in my pants and when my wife was ironing them it embedded it's self in her finger. Well, I got it out for her and told her it was a thorn. But I knew it was a piece of brass. This is when I decided to get the Hornady case prep center. Now it does not catch all of the shavings. But it catches about 95%.

    Now I can find no other brand that can contain the brass fillings for both trim and case prep as the Hornady.
     
  25. ponchh

    ponchh Member

    Joined:
    May 23, 2016
    Messages:
    305
    Location:
    Alexander AR
    If you are loading bottle necks there is a lot of trimmer's out there that do all that for you. Mine is a trim it 2.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice