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Old Guy Tip: Reload!

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by Legionnaire, Jul 6, 2018.

  1. mstreddy

    mstreddy Member

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    I got interested in reloading when I sat and watched one of my shop NCOs doing it. He explained to this young guy what it was all about. How he could customize ammo for his guns. One thing we would do is load pointy tips in 30-30 ammo as the first round in the mag in his lever, and IIRC he had a TC pistol with the 30-30 barrel as well. I was intrigued by it all.

    A few years later I find myself shooting almost every week with some buddies, so I got a press, dies, components and got started. I was only loading 9MM at the time, but got dies for 40 and 45 ACP and started saving my brass. This was in 1988-89.
    Hurricane Andrew came, I moved, but with life, etc., the press stayed put away until 2005. I brought it out, started loading. Life -- again -- got deployed, got back, got married, moved again, then I got it all going again after seeing the Banic in 09. Oh, yeah deployed again!
    By 2011 I was zooming along, and then I got the LNL AP and I haven't looked back. Of course the Banic hit in 2012 and by then I can say I was glad to have everything set up and components to boot!

    Since October 2012 I can say that except for 22 LR, of course, and some odd balls or smoking deals, I have barely bought or shot very much of any factory ammo. And I shoot almost every week.
    I've gotten several folks interested in reloading and have mentored a few, both young and old. When someone expresses interest I always ask them about what volume they shoot, or how much they would like to shoot. And, I ask them about how good they are at following directions and paying attention to details. When asked, I provide guidance on getting started, gear, components, etc. I also point them to THR's reloading section as it is easily one of the most comprehensive resource for the hobby. I've also lent out my Lyman's 49th edition a few times. I ask them to read the applicable chapters and then come back with questions. If they don't read the material, then I know their interest is not quite there and I move on, and get my book back.

    So, yeah, listen to us "old folk" and learn to reload.
     
  2. hdwhit
    • Contributing Member

    hdwhit Member

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    Ouch.

    You my sympathy - and respect.
     
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  3. kb308

    kb308 Member

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    It sounds like you're really busy. I hope you're still able to spend time with the kids, wife and the 2 dogs :(
     
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  4. exbrit49

    exbrit49 Member

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    In response to the OP. I do reload and started in the early 70s, That was when I purchased my first .357 and factorry ammo was expensive. I started off with the press I still use, a single stage Rock Chucker! As time went by I started loading all of my ammunition. I found it was a lot cheaper and enabled me to shoot a lot more than I would have with store ammo. As soon as I started I was thrilled that I could tailor specific loads to a given firearm and improve accuracy.
    I found that I loved tinkering and working up new loads for each of my guns and even now, 40 years later I still enjoy it. Today I re-loaded 100 45 ACP, 150 38 SP, 100 9mm and 20 7.62x39. It was a great day and really relaxed me after driving 300 miles yesterday.
    As I said, I really enjoy reloading and it adds to the pleasure of my hobby. The great thing, I don't have to worry about how many rounds I shoot on each range trip. I shoot till I am tired! Usually about 300 to 500 rounds.
    I load 10 calibers, rifle and pistol and its wonderful to know that the loads I use are for a specific firearm and I get the best accuracy and performance from each.
    Yep Reloading is fun and an extension of the shooting hobby! I usually load up to 3000 rounds a year, sometimes more~
     
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  5. BullRunBear

    BullRunBear Member

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    Almost 40 years ago I started reloading to save money and learned every way to scrounge, use factory second gear (It's only cosmetics), etc. It helped to have in-laws who lived twenty minutes from the Lee Precision company. Then I found out I enjoyed the process for it's own sake and usefulness. Black powder cartridges for 45-70 and 45 Colt, mild cast bullet loads for mil-surp bolt rifles, you name it. The act of reloading is relaxing, calls for a degree of mechanical skill which is nice when your job is paper pushing, and provides a sense of satisfaction and self-reliance. It has added a lot to my shooting hobby.

    But if someone lacks the interest, time (something I know about), or even the space for tools and components, they are no less shooters. The idea is to have fun.

    Jeff
     
  6. Good Ol' Boy

    Good Ol' Boy Member

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    As others have mentioned I have other things I'd rather be doing. Its the one aspect of the gun hobby that I just cant get into.

    For what I can get the store bought ammo that I use for, the savings argument is minimal.

    I can appreciate developing loads and those that get into that sort of thing.

    For me factory loads give me everything I need.
     
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  7. ar-newbie

    ar-newbie Member

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    I started out loading for savings, then I got better at it. I started with just pistol ammo, as all I had were pistols. Then I picked up an ar-15 and started loading 5.56 ammo, this lead to dramatic improvements to the accuracy of the rifle. There is absolutely no comparison between the performance of factory ammo vs the loads I have made for my specific rifle. This lead me to build an ar-10 rifle chambered in .308 and that was even more accurate.

    So my opinion on reloading has changed from saving money to making the most accurate ammo you can get. Accuracy really does matter.
     
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  8. buck460XVR

    buck460XVR Member

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    While reloading is a fun, relatively easy and safe hobby, like riding motorcycle, it is not for everybody. Some folks are just better off buying factory ammo........kinda the whole reason you see most folks advising against shooting other folk's reloads. Some of the questions and responses I see here on the reloading forum makes me question why some people mess with flammables. Being in the construction business for 40 some odd years, I was witness to the fact that just cause someone can operate a hammer and saw.....does not mean they should.


    Just sayin'.......
     
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  9. theotherwaldo

    theotherwaldo Member

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    Frankly, there just aren't any satisfactory factory rounds for my Lee Metford cavalry carbines, '73 Trapdoor, '16 Spanish Mauser in 7.62 CETME, or any of the other fun old oddballs that I like to shoot.
    If I don't reload for them then I don't shoot them.
     
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  10. ar-newbie

    ar-newbie Member

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    Those same factors are readily visible when I visit public ranges. There are plenty of people who not only shouldn't reload ammo, they should really go back to square one and be properly educated on the proper and safe operation of firearms. I am not saying this to be rude or mean to them, and certainly not insulting them. The fact is they are a danger to themselves and those around them.
     
  11. 460Shooter

    460Shooter Member

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    I'll say too, when you live alone, it's winter time on a Saturday morning, and it's 20 below out and snowy, time in the reloading room is a fun activity when you just refuse to go outside.
     
  12. frankmako

    frankmako Member

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    Reloading is relaxing for me. I started in 73. Don't know why, just got into it. Later in 82 I started casting lead bullets. It was in the 80s then reloading became more to me. It was in the 80 when i and my wife started shooting nra silhouette matches, rifle and pistol. I need lots of ammo weekly. ammo that could group and knock down heavy steel targets. Also the ammo was made so it did not beat you up with recoil. These day factory ammo can be gotten cheap, but you don't know how long it will last.
     
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  13. Kaeto

    Kaeto Member

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    I got started by having to reload for my Enfield Mk VI in .455 Webley.
     
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  14. wanderinwalker

    wanderinwalker Member

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    Well, I'm not an old guy (34) and I've been reloading for close to 20 years already myself.

    I'll never suggest somebody start reloading purely for saving money. If I added up the cost of equipment sitting in my closet, it would probably equal some nice upgrades to my girlfriend's Jeep. If I've saved a single penny since starting down this rabbit hole I'd be very surprised.

    What has happened though is I'm a much better shot than I ever would've been without reloading. And I've been able to spend a lot of time shooting guns and cartridges that don't lend themselves to high volume use with factory ammo.

    Even though my choices these days run toward more commonly available cartridges than I used to gravitate toward, reloading is still part of the shooting experience for me. Can you imagine shooting lots of factory semi-wadcutter .45 ACP ammo? How about .38 Super anything? Match hollowpoints in .223 Remington? With a progressive press and a portable bench, I can shoot all of those and more until I get tired of shooting!
     
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  15. WiTom

    WiTom Member

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    I can't imagine shooting my 44 magnums, 44 specials, 357 mags, and all the revolvers, as much as I do, and paying for stock ammo. I didn't start out, reloading for the money end of it, but for certain calibers, it's the only way to go, if you want to shoot at all.
     
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  16. JR24

    JR24 Member

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    Tailored loads and cheaper prices are what I use to convince my wife I need more powder/primers/bullets/new dies etc.

    The truth is I enjoy reloading almost as much as shooting. I find a half hour here and there and it, and range time, are about the only "me" time I get with two young kids.
     
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  17. Legionnaire
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    Legionnaire Member

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    Several have commented that they hand load because it is the only way to shoot firearms in obsolete or otherwise obscure cartridges. That has been my most recent addition to the hobby. In the past year or so I have discovered P.O. Ackley's "improved" cartridges. I now have a couple of rifles in .243 AI and a new build in .260 AI. It really is a whole new and enjoyable aspect of shooting to have to form brass before you can build your custom ammo. Granted, this is easy enough with the AI cartridges, as one can fire form improved cases from factory loads (and still shoot factory ammo safely and accurately from an improved chamber). Nevertheless, it really gets fun when you are working up a new load in a cartridge nobody else at the range has ... not to mention that the .243 and .260 AI cartridges perform extremely well and just look cool!
     
  18. Hydraulic Jack

    Hydraulic Jack Member

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    I do save my brass and will reload, some day. Have to complete the basement setup first. It's good advice to save brass, though. Also, if some dude is getting out of reloading, buy his swag.
     
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