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help selecting a press

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by CYANIDEGENOCIDE, Jan 2, 2009.

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    Feb 20, 2008
    Hey guys, first time posting in this section. I've been browsing the old posts but I still have some questions regarding selecting a press. Originally I thought I wanted a Dillion 350, but I think I would be better suited with a single stage press or a turret press. I don't understand the difference between the two however.

    I want to load for:
    pistols 45 ACP, 9mm, .38/.357, 10mm, 500s&w
    rifles .223/5.56, .308, .30-06, .375HH, 7.62x39, 7.62x54R (if reloading is ever cheaper than wolf)
    Can a single stage or turret press load all these calibers provided I have the correct dies and holders? :confused:
    I really don't plan on cranking out more than 150-200 rounds per month.
  2. lgbloader

    lgbloader Member

    Apr 17, 2008
    150 rounds a month? Hmmm...

    Single stage all the way.

    The only problem is that once you start hand loading, you shoot more. It's just that simple.

    So... Get a Single stage (Lee Classic Cast) and a Lee Classic Turret Kit. You will need 10 - 11 sets of dies, 2 reloading manuals minimum, all the case prep tools, case trimmers and other tools such as calipers, a scale, a case tumbler, and other gizmo's so an extra $70.00 bucks for a single stage will not overkill the package.

    Once you buy the above, it is only the beginning...

    Welcome to the madness of it all.

  3. cajun 48

    cajun 48 Member

    Sep 11, 2008
    Hi there CYANIDE,
    Welcome to "Reloader World"
    You might want to read the sticky from Dave about new to reloading..
    Also take a peak at the thread "which turret press to start with by cardboarddisaster.
    Both of these should/will help with your choice.

    aj b
  4. jcwit

    jcwit Member

    Oct 19, 2007
    Great state of Indiana
    Would really suggest a single stage or turrent press to get started. You'll get more familar with what you're doing ect. Plus for no more than what you say you're going to reload doesn't make a lot of sense go go into the highest priced equipment but it is your money.

    The new Lee presses are an excellent money value, but are short on bragging rights. The'll load as good ammo as any other press .

    I'll bet that once you start reloading you'll start shooting more. Next step would be to casting at least for handguns. Then you can really shoot on the cheap.

    Sorry I forgot Welcome!
  5. rfwobbly

    rfwobbly Member

    Nov 14, 2008
    Cornelia, GA
    Those were the days my friend...

    Yea, and then one day you'll discover that you have several thousand bullets, a ton of range brass, a free afternoon, and....

    That's the way we all started! :D
  6. CU74

    CU74 Member

    Nov 15, 2006
    IMHO, it's hard to beat a turret press for most reloading needs and the Lee Classic Turret (the cast iron one) is an excellent cost-effective first press. (For those who suggest starting with a single-stage press, it can be 'converted' into a single-stage press by merely removing the indexing shaft.)

    I reload 9mm through .30-06 on my Lee turret, so I think you would be able to reload all of the calibers you listed.
  7. SASS#23149

    SASS#23149 Member

    Jan 1, 2003
    Start with the pistol rounds,then work your way up to rifle..so to speak.More steps involved in rifle brass prep.
    buy dies as you learn,i woldn't suggest spending the whole wad at once then find out it's not your cup of tea.
    If I was starting over,I'd also go with the Lee cast iron turret press.Their cast aluminum presses are a mite weak.
    Lee dies are better priced than all others,and they work just fine for the average shooter.
  8. Shoney

    Shoney Member

    Jan 1, 2003
    Transplanted away from MT
    One of your original questions was that you didn't understand the difference between a single stage and a turret.

    Single stage press has one ram which holds one shell holder that goes up and down; and it has only one place for a die. You must change dies between each of the "stages" in the process of reloading; i.e. resizing, flaring, and seating/crimping.

    Turret press has one ram that holds one shell holder; with a rotatable multi-station turret top for positioning dies and powder measure in their appropriate sequence over the single case. The configuration of various brands of turrets differ in shape and in the number of dies they will hold. Some turrets need to be turned manually, while others are self indexing (these may also be set to manual index). It requires several pulls to complete a cartridge.

    Single stage presses require that each case in the run must undergo one operation in the loading sequence and then be set aside awaiting the next operation; i.e. size/prime; charge; flare mouth (required on all straight-wall pistol and rifle cartridges); seat/crimp, or seat and crimp in separate operations.

    With a turret, you usually work on one case at a time, completing each operation, then turning the turret to complete the next operation, and next, and so on. Once familiar with turret operation and sequence, handloaders can produce ammo much faster on a turret than on single stage.
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