Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by James THR, Aug 30, 2006.
All Palmetto Reloading Gear/Accessories! Palmettostatearmory
Show us a picture of your reloading bench. Here is a pic of mine (its not always so neat )
1st: Dry Creek Bench.
2nd: Primed bench ready to paint.
Mine has not changed much from this pic - about a year or two ago - just way more chaotic!
Only problem is - it is the other half of my office area and so - way too easy to be tempted sometimes to get off puter and go load some stuff!
Here is my reloading bench,
Here is the tumbling bench,
Here is the gun cleaning bench,
And finaly the casting table
It's here: http://forums.sixgunner.com/m_27446/mpage_1/key_/tm.htm
Doesn’t get much simpler than this. Lee Anniversary Starter kit and a cleaned off bench in the barn (sort of). Been loading for two weeks now and can’t imagine that I’d need anything else. Naw…
Haven't built it yet but here are the plans:
Looks simple and heavy duty.
Dear bigger jon:
I couldn't help but notice that you also cast your own bullets, which is something I used to do. The question I have for you is : do you do this inside? The reason I ask is that I ran into a guy who was at a pistol club I used to belong to, and he was bald, and talked kind of slow, and apparently he did a LOT of lead smelting and bullet casting in his garage. As a result got a pretty bad case of lead poisioning that had made him bald and messed up his brain somewhat, and I wouldn't want ANYBODY to end up the way he did. I was relatively lucky in that fluxing the lead was a relatively smoky process when I first started, so I built a fan to take the smoke from the lead pot outside, and in later years I just did all my casting at work in a lab hood on my lunch hour. If you don't have VERY good ventilation in your shop, you might want to think about setting up a small bume hood with a blower, and it probably wouldn't hurt to get your blood checked for lead levels. Good luck and stay safe!!
I've since moved, and everything is still boxed up.
But this was my setup until the first week of August 2006:
Yes it is a pro2000. Its a good press and I have made about 150,000 rounds out of it so far. I bought it for the aps primer strips because I don't like the idea of primers in a tube. No complaints so far.
To bad RCBS does not bring out a model 2007 that is a 7 holer that is more in direct competition to the 650. I would not mind a few more die holes and an automatic case feeder.
This is my new bench, there is a work bench behind the camera and storage shelves to the side, and behind the camera. I outgrew the old bench I'd been using for 40 years.
That's the dillon bench, shortly after it was built. 2 pieces of 3/4 inch plywood screwed and glued together, 2x4 frame is lag bolted to the wall. It's not that neat anymore!
You guys are all neat freaks. This is about normal for the mess I have on my main bench.
That's #3 bench, the lee chalanger doesn't get used much, nor does the 20ga. mec 600 jr. The lead pot is used occasionally. Powder storage is in another place, I don't have a pic of that.
I have been wanting to add a picture of my bench to this thread; I finally am getting around to it....
edited for spelling...keano44
My Humble Bench
It ain't much but it works for me.
I thought you could all use a good laugh. This is my bench where hopefully there will be some equipment soon. I haven't reloaded yet but I am getting very close to buying my equipment. I just want to say there are a lot of nice looking benches and setups. This helps me a lot and probably others that are new and want to get started. Great thread and keep it going.
I am just starting out, thanks for all the pics, they inspired me to build my own bench.
I asked my wife if I could take over a corner of the basement to make a reloading area. Well I made a little reloading room.
Looking from the doorway:
Can you see the safe handle? I built the safe into the wall:
Here's the case cleaning area:
Gun cleaning bench:
There you have it. How'd I do?
That's a Dillon 650 bolted to the bench. You can't quite see that the bench has a 2X4 brace going up to the joist and another 2X4 attached to the wall that secures the top of the bench. You could dance on top of the bench. I framed the room in the usual way and put up cedar paneling, but put the safe flush into the wall.
Here's the back of the wall with the safe:
I work part time at an indoor shooting range/gun shop (ain't life grand?), that's where I got the Glock banner, and a few others. If I'm not upstairs in my office at the computer, you'll find me tinkering around down in the shop.
I can't think of a better place to hide!
Just an observation for everyone: Your scale is very suseptable to dust. It works best and most accurately when it is dust-free. I found a solution at Lowe's several years ago. Find one of the clear plastic "shoe boxes" they sell in their organizer section. I tossed the lid and place the box upside down over my scale. It's sized just right, stays nice and pristine and it's a lot better IMHO than the vinyl bag-type covers that you usually see. Just a thought.
Here's shots of my humble main and secondary benches.
I would add to the comment "strong enough to dance on". Anybody just starting out reloading; IF the bench you're going to build is NOT strong enough to dance on, it won't be strong enough to load on! Build whatever bench you are considering to whithstand a lot of pressure, especially side ways torque applied by a press on one edge while sizing cases! It WILL try to tip the whole bench over! Even just lifting the other side a little is un-nerving, especially if you have loose bullets sitting on top or charged cases in a loading block.
One trick is to put all your bullets on the back edge to conterweight it so it won't lift. A simpler idea is to screw it to the wall/floor to make it stay put.
bench top material ideas
I just put together my second reloading bench. The first one I used 3/4" CDX plywood with 1/4" masonite board on the top. That was OK but had a little bit of give when sizing brass and torquing the endge of the bench.
For this #2 bench top I have 1" pine board as a base. Actual thickness of 1", not nominal. Boards are glued together to form a 24" wide board, from Home Depot). then I put 3/4" playwood that has Birch veneers on the top. The birch gives it a reasonably hard and smooth finish compared to fir/pine veneers. Looking back I wish I had spent the extra few dollars over the birch and just went ahead with an oak veneer plywood.
I used seven 5/16" galvanized (not zinc) bolts to secure the 23"x38" top to th e base cabinet. The cabinet is 32" wide. In order to provide room for the press to operate I have a 6" overhand on the right side where I mounted it. This combination is very sturdy and stable. No give at all no matter how hard I push down on the press handle.
The other approach I was thinking off until I found the glued up pine boards was to use 2x6 or 2x8 as a base and then 1/4" masonite over the top for a smooth finish. At any rate I think you want a minumum thickness of 1 1/2" to 2" for a reloading bench top.
Space Saving Vertical Reloading Bench
When I started reloading 12 years ago, I built a space saving vertical reloading bench and bolted it to the back wall of a walk in closet. Close the closet door, and you'd never know a gun nut lived there. I've since moved and space is more of a premium than it was, so I was very glad I made a compact space saving reloading bench. I upgraded from the Lee Pro-1000 to a Lee LoadMaster. The bench is in my office, behind my computer. Turn around in the chair and I'm reloading instead of computing.
So far, I'm reloading 9mm and 10mm, but I also have a quick change turret and shell plate for .223 I haven't used yet, and I plan on adding .308 soon. I have a lot of unused storage space on the vertical bench that I'll be filling up soon.
Not shown: The brass I have stored in Rubbermaid storage containers (a bit larger and sturdier than plastic shoe boxes), the brass tumbler and media separator, the lead melt pot and bullet casting equipment, the Lee LoadAll 12 gauge shot shell loading press I've never used and the 1000 hulls I have to go with it.
Also not shown: I have a bright light on the left side that I can point at the press, and a very nice (and expensive!) lighted magnifier on the bench to the right that i can use to examine fine details. My 46 year old eyes need a lot of light and magnification for detailed work.
The vertical bench allows a lot of storage options for reloading equipment, powder, bullets, primers, etc. It could be easily expanded to accommodate a second press or more storage.
I use the MTM ammo boxes to store loads under development so I can keep them straight while test firing them. Once a load is the way I want it, I just load into mil-surp ammo cans and dip out of them into the Dilln Bordercross ammo range bag.
Here's a cheesy video of one round of 9mm being reloaded on the LoadMaster progressive press.
Since the video and the picture above, I've added a second 2X8 under the press to stiffen the bench. The compact design is very stiff and solid, and mounting it to the wall keeps the loading bench from moving. It's rock solid.
I'm pleasantly surprised by the amount of readily available storage space on my vertical reloading bench, although I know I'll outgrow it. I'll probably add a second, smaller vertical bench to the left for the 12 gauge reloader.
I don't really want to store the other stuff with my reloading bench in it's current location in my office because all the bullet casting and brass cleaning operations can generate lead dust, and I'm kind of nuts about keeping the few brain cells I have left working as well as possible.
I started reloading to be able to afford to shoot the 10mm. With hard cast bullets, mostly from free used wheel weights from the local tire shop, my 10mm cost is about four cents a round, which is about the cost of premium 22 ammo. However, I was surprised that I enjoyed reloading as a hobby unto itself. I reload 9mm ammo now, and using Rainier plated bullets I'm currently not saving much over the cost of buying 9mm ammo, but I reload because I enjoy it. I'll start casting 9mm bullets too. That 9mm SUB-2000 carbine has an insatiable appetite.
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