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  #21  
Old 04-06-2015, 01:26 PM
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Jjr Male Jjr is offline
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I have a motley mix of reloading equipment for metallic cartridges. I began mostly with Lyman dies and one of their "C" Presses, but had just about as much RCBS equipment in the end. Then did little or no reloading for a number of years before beginning again. When picking up the hobby or practice again I purchased some Redding equipment but mostly Lee reloading equipment the 2nd time around.

The old "C" press has served me well for 30+ years, and is no longer manufactured (I believe), but if it were, I would recommend an "0" or "D" style press because they have greater strength.

Carbide dies are the only way to go for handgun calibers. They are certainly quicker & cleaner to use and the cheapest in the long run.

In addition to the full length sizer, I also have a neck sizing die for all calibers using a bolt action. Unfortunately most leaver actions and semi-automatics will not function with just neck sized brass in reloaded ammo.

I have a Lyman table top case trimmer, but find the Lee hand trimmers more user friendly in the long run. I find a powder trickler useful for very small cases more than anything else, but if you want to be exacting on powder charges they will be a very useful consideration. I have scales, a Lyman uniflow powder measures, and an old Bonanze Bulleye Powder dropper (similar to the RCBS Little Dandy measurer) but find myself using the Lee Powder Dippers more than anything else (having both the older red set and the newer yellow set), so it's not always whats out there, but what works for you.

Lyman split rings for setting the depth of dies are the cats meow, and regardless of Lee, Redding, RCBS or Lyman dies, they all wear Lyman split rings at my place. The Lee Factory Crimp Die is "the BEST" in my book and I have retrofitted all my die sets with one regardless of the original dies manufacturer.

I have never had a complaint with any of the brands I use & mentioned here. I do believe much of the older equipment is the better equipment, but that is just my personal opinion. Quality equipment is never regretted, and price is usually an indication of quality, but price is not always an absolute regarding quality.

Shotgun reloading is a different ballgame completely. I have a Mec shotgun press, and it has always served me well. It rarely ever gets used anymore, unless I shoot a little skeet. I just don't hunt anything requiring a shotgun anymore, more because of leasing than anything else.

I purchased a Lee .20 gauge loader for my BIL one Christmas, and he seemed to like it, and I have reloaded at times for him, so he could take a break, while visiting with him. The Lee seems a little slower and is set up different from the Mec, but given time and use (familiarity) it would probably be just a fast as the Mec I am (insert was) accustom to using.

Last edited by Jjr; 04-06-2015 at 01:40 PM.
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  #22  
Old 04-09-2015, 07:02 AM
Kachad Male Kachad is offline
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I started reloading about 5 years ago, so I don't have a lot of years of experience - but have really enjoyed the science behind it and the savings. Although, come to think of it, I spend a lot more on components now than purchasing ammo at the store. I probably shoot at least 5x more rounds now than I did previously, at the range.

The most satisfaction that I receive from the practice is when you take game with your personal load. The first deer that I dropped with my first hand load was more or less a spiritual experience.

I use a Lee turret for most of my loading. The gear that rotates the dies went down after the first year, so I switch them by hand now. I came to prefer doing that, so haven't replaced the gear.

I also have a hornady progressive, which was gifted to me by a friend (he moved out to the east coast, dropped the range and reloading work). Puts out a lot of .45 rounds quickly, but I find I don't use it that often. I still prefer the turret.

Currently load for .45, 30-06, .308, .300 Savage, 30-30, and 35 Rem.

I don't neck size for my bolts, so far just stay with full length. I plan on comparing the two methods sometime in the future, but almost all my shots are in the 50 yard range (or less). This year I do plan on doing some work comparing the two methods - testing at 200 yards, but for practical purposes where I hunt - there's not a lot of shots taken at 200 yards +.
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  #23  
Old 04-09-2015, 08:57 AM
oeb oeb is offline
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333, I was surfing stores this AM and noted that Titan Reloading had Lee Loadalls with all the necessary accessories on sale for under $55. I saw 20s and 12s but didn't look for 16s, et al. I've used a lot of Lee equipment over the years --I'm mid-70s, been reloading since mid-20s and now casting-- and it has served me just as good if not better than the several other brands of stuff I've since discarded in favor of Lee. BTW, the LoadAlls have great unconditional guarantees. Another source for cheap equipment is often on eBay. Not long ago I bought a MEC Jr. kit for a nephew on eBay for $46 shipped. Another inexpensive way for you to start might be with the little hand presses that are available and/or the Classic Lee Loaders. I use bench stuff mostly now but still use those little kits for some of my bolt guns with outstanding results. I've loaded lots of shotgun shells with the Lee Loader; rifle, too. You can pick up this kind of stuff used on forums, etc., for around $15-20. I just bought a good .243 loader on Gun Broker for $15 to use in the field, Throws excellent rounds for the DW especially using patched cast. Good luck to you and keep us posted on your headway.

oeb
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  #24  
Old 04-11-2015, 12:45 AM
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Jjr Male Jjr is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kachad View Post
I started reloading about 5 years ago,

I also have a hornady progressive, which was gifted to me by a friend (he moved out to the east coast, dropped the range and reloading work).

I don't neck size for my bolts, so far just stay with full length. I plan on comparing the two methods sometime in the future, but almost all my shots are in the 50 yard range (or less). This year I do plan on doing some work comparing the two methods - testing at 200 yards, but for practical purposes where I hunt - there's not a lot of shots taken at 200 yards +.
Equipment gifted to one becomes very special equipment usually. Your friend obviously though very highly of you. That Hornady Progressive was a very nice gift.

Kachad, before you try using a neck die, invest a few bucks in a Forster Graphiter. Using Powdered Graphite (White Mica) is much cleaner and faster in the long run than using lube the necks. I have never dented a neck using graphite, but even being very careful, just a little too much lube can and will dimple a neck. Neck sizing works the brass much less than full length resizing and extends the life of your brass.

The Forster Graphiter will probably set you back 12 - 17.50+ tax depending upon where you purchase it. I don't think you will be disappointed with it.
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  #25  
Old 04-11-2015, 01:49 AM
Kachad Male Kachad is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jjr View Post
Equipment gifted to one becomes very special equipment usually. Your friend obviously though very highly of you. That Hornady Progressive was a very nice gift.

Kachad, before you try using a neck die, invest a few bucks in a Forster Graphiter. Using Powdered Graphite (White Mica) is much cleaner and faster in the long run than using lube the necks. I have never dented a neck using graphite, but even being very careful, just a little too much lube can and will dimple a neck. Neck sizing works the brass much less than full length resizing and extends the life of your brass.

The Forster Graphiter will probably set you back 12 - 17.50+ tax depending upon where you purchase it. I don't think you will be disappointed with it.
Yep, he's a very close Friend of mine, we've been hanging out since we were about 14. So pretty much Brothers.

I switched to a powdered graphite product soon after I started loading. Will never go back. I put some of it in an old film canister and shot, dip the brass in and go.

Thanks about the heads up on extending brass life with neck sizing, I didn't think about that - good info!
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  #26  
Old 04-17-2015, 10:08 PM
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Bearfootfarm Male Bearfootfarm is offline
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Quote:
Thanks about the heads up on extending brass life with neck sizing, I didn't think about that - good info!
That works as long as the actions will close easily on the cases, and they are used in the gun in which they were fired.

Otherwise, you can just bump the shoulders back about .002

You can also anneal the necks if needed, but for most people that won't be necessary if you start out with a lot of brass to begin with
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  #27  
Old 04-25-2015, 10:54 PM
blackpowderbill Male blackpowderbill is offline
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Default lube and case life

Another dry lube is Motor mica is fantastic it is white too! Fire annealing also softens brass that has been worked several times. Every time u size it hardens the brass
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