Getting started

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by tattooed1, May 1, 2011.

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  1. tattooed1

    tattooed1 Member

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    I am wanting to get into reloading, but have no idea where to start or what to get. I do know I have a variety of rounds I would like to reload. Any ideas or pointers in what equipment to get, and or where to get it for a reasonable price? Also what would be a good guide to read? Any and all help is greatly appreciated. Thanks.
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2011
  2. fractal7

    fractal7 Member

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    A lot of people should chime in shortly but the first step is to get a reloading manual. I have been using the Speer manual and like it but the first ~150 pages of almost every manual out there are the step by step instructions of how reloading works. That should give you a better idea of the purpose of all the equipment and what you need.

    After that a lot of companies sell good single stage starter kits that have everything you need minus dies and projectiles/powder/primers. I went with the RCBS Rock Chucker kit and only had to add a few things (powder trickler, dies, tumbler) and have been happy with it.
     
  3. buck460XVR

    buck460XVR Member

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    Rifle, handgun or both? What do you consider "a variety"? How many rounds a month? Quality or quantity? Are you considering reloading just to save monies or do you think it is a hobby that you will enjoy? All these things should be considered before investing in equipment.....they are also things we should know in order to help you.
     
  4. john16443

    john16443 Member

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    A good place to start and explore is the Sticky: For the New Reloader: Thinking about Reloading; Equipment Basics -- READ THIS FIRST
    located above on this forum.

    http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=238214

    You indicate interest in several calibers. As a suggestion from a fellow reloader that is only 4 months into it, I'd suggest a Lee Deluxe Turret kit available here: http://www.fmreloading.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=FMR&Product_Code=90928&Category_Code=Semi-Progressive+Press+Kits

    Supplement this with some good manuals, Lee die sets for the calibers you're interested in, the safety prime system, some additional 4 hole turrets for your other calibers, and some calipers or micrometer, and you're all set. You can always start the search for a better scale after you've got the basics down. For way less than $200 you're ready to crank out ammo that you've loaded in a single caliber. For less than $50 more for dies and turret plate, you can do any other caliber you want.

    If you're going to get into rifle reloading, consider moving up to the Lee Classic Turret kit from here: https://kempfgunshop.com//index.php?page=shop.product_details&flypage=shop.flypage&product_id=630&category_id=26&manufacturer_id=0&option=com_virtuemart&Itemid=41

    Most folks will tell you that the classic is the way to go over the deluxe, it's up to you to decide.
     
  5. gamestalker

    gamestalker member

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    A book is a must. I bought the Speer manual and it helped me through the entire process of deciding what to buy and how it works. I don't know what type of reloading you are wanting to do as in single stage or faster automated set ups. But my recomendationw oudl be to start with a single stage. Single stage really helps to teach you the fundementals of hand loading. For some, such as myself, it is the one at a time attention to each round that inspires me, I've been doing it like this for almost 3 decades. For others it about kicking out as many rounds as quickly as possible, no doubt it's far less time consuming and requires a lot less hands on. If your planning on shooting thousands of rounds per month a more progressive set up is the way to go for most.
    But start with a good manual so you can make an informed decision about which set up meets your expectations and needs.
     
  6. LiveLife

    LiveLife Member

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    +1 on reloading manuals - check out your local library and most will have several in the reference section. Browse through and buy the ones you like. The one everyone should have is Lyman's #49 and it's less than $17 from Natchez (If you got older reloading manuals you don't use, do the "High Road" thing and donate them to the local library ;)).

    And definitely ask for forum sentiment before spending money on particular equipment/products. We all started as newbies and many of us learned the hard way buying "through" equipment/products that did not work out for us.

    Most here will guide you properly to avoid pitfalls on what will work and what won't.
     
  7. Smokey Joe

    Smokey Joe Member

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    Getting started...

    Tattooed one--You said
    The suggestions above are good. May I add one: Buy AND READ a book entitled The ABC's of Reloading put out by Krause Publishing, www.krause.com

    This is "the standard text" on the subject. It explains all the basics, and goes 'way beyond that. Belongs on every reloader's bookshelf, well thumbed, IMHO. Having read The ABC's, you will have a clear idea if where to start, and what you need to get started, as opposed to what you want, and what can wait until later.

    I wish something like this had been available back when I began reloading. It would have saved me a lot of trial-and-error buying of equipment.

    You'll also need a reloading manual, or more than one, but START with The ABC's. Reloading manuals are kind of like recipe books. The ABC's is more a how-to and more importantly why-and-why-not-to kind of book.
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2011
  8. Old krow

    Old krow Member

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    I agree, it's a good book to read and have around.

    I also think that a single stage press is a good place to start. A Lee Classic Turret without the indexing rod would serve roughly the same purpose. What's more important is giving yourself enough time to learn safe practices.

    Aside from that, you'd want to answer Buck's questions and make a decision based on how you will use the equipment.
     
  9. Pacsd

    Pacsd Member

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    back in the mid 70's when I was interested in reloading I got hooked up with a bud who introduced me to the craft. The 1st thing he did was to give me the manual to read, read & read again. This guy was a Fire Control technician where he maintained the tail guns on the old venerable B-52's. Needless to say he was an absolute stickler for precision. I bought a set of dies and he walked me though the entire process. The reason I related this story is to give you an option of finding an accomplished mentor to give you hands on experience instead of stumbling through the procedures. As far as a set-up goes it's personal preference, I'm a died in the wool RCBS guy. Good luck.
     
  10. J_McLeod

    J_McLeod Member

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    +1 on the Lee turret. I have one and I think it's the best deal out there. You can use it like a single stage to learn on, and still load rounds quickly once you get good at it.
     
  11. LiveLife

    LiveLife Member

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    I really think the key improvement of using the Lee Classic Turret in single stage mode over the regular single stage press is the ability to set your dies and not have to screw/unscrew/recheck/adjust dies again - you simply rotate the turret to get to the next die when you are done with each reloading task.

    Also, if you have different caliber dies preset in the turret, caliber change is literally a "snap".
     
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