Questions about reloading

This is a discussion on Questions about reloading within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I have been thinking about reloading. Thinking maybe .38 special, 9mm and maybe 40. Which of the machines I have listed do you all think ...

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  1. #1
    Member Array minimalbrat's Avatar
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    Questions about reloading

    I have been thinking about reloading. Thinking maybe .38 special, 9mm and maybe 40. Which of the machines I have listed do you all think is best? Please tell me about other progressive machines if you know a good one.

    Really only looking at 9mm right now but you never know about the future.

    Thank you for the information

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    VIP Member Array dukalmighty's Avatar
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    I use the Dillon 550B You can use other manufacturers reloading dies.The Square deal B uses only Dillon Dies and will load only straight wall pistol cases where the 550 will load all pistol and most rifle if you ever decide to also load some rifle calibers.
    IMHO the 550B is a more versatile reloader and the one I chose,next one will be either the 650 or 1050
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    If you go with Dillon, the caliber changeover is cost-prohibitive with the SDB. The 550 is the better choice if you want to load multiple calibers on the same machine.

    However, look closely at the Hornady Lock-n-Load AP progressive press. It offers 5 die stations and automatic indexing, like the Dillon 650, and if you latch onto a deal (like I got from Midway) it's very competitive with the 550.
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    VIP Member Array high pockets's Avatar
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    I have a Square Deal B that I use to reload .38spl, .357mag, 9mm, .40S&W, 10mm, .45ACP, and .45LC

    Like the duke says, the Square Deal B is limited to straight wall pistol calibers. Good machine until you decide to begin reloading rifle calibers, or something like .357SIG, or .44-40

    The 550 does give more possibilities.
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    I like my 550b but have no experience with Hornady presses. My 550 currently loads .40,.45 and 30-06 with out problems.
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    I have been reloading for 36 years. Hands down the best machine I have ever used is the Dillin 650. If you load higher volumes the auto indexing is well worth the added cost.
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    Senior Member Array Devilsclaw's Avatar
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    The 550 for the reasons already talked about. The 450 is an ok press, but the 550 is quite a step up. I never have really understood Dillons thinking on the SDB. I always thought it was kind of geared toward the "entry" level progressive customer, or possibly a more budget-conscious customer, but everything about it makes it cost much much more, unless one only loads one caliber of a straight-walled handgun cartridge. The 550 is a really good machine.

    I personally think there are slightly better values and choices out there, but that wasn't your question.

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    I have always used Lee presses. I am using a Load Master for my pistol cartridges. Very affordable and extremely easy to change calibers. Technically, it's a five station auto indexing progressive. Practically, it's four stations since you either use the first two stations to de-cap and re-size or you leave the second station empty and de-cap/re-size in station 1.

    Dollar for dollar you can't go wrong with Lee. I can't speak for Dillon or Hornady presses as I have never used either. After the Load Master though, I can't imagine spending the money on a Dillon. Maybe if I were reloading more than a couple K/month. I suspect the the Dillon is more durable than the Lee but I haven't seen any indication that Lee will wear out any time soon.

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    I found this article very informative: http://www.comrace.ca/cmfiles/dillon...Comparison.pdf

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    Member Array Munch's Avatar
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    +1 Dillon 550B. The quick change assembly is a nice feature.
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    VIP Member Array sixgun's Avatar
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    Square deal b. That will probably be my next press. I have a lee pro 1000 I bought used and its doin fine so far. But i want to expand my reloading capabilities.

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    Quote Originally Posted by luvmy40 View Post
    I have always used Lee presses. I am using a Load Master for my pistol cartridges. Very affordable and extremely easy to change calibers. Technically, it's a five station auto indexing progressive. Practically, it's four stations since you either use the first two stations to de-cap and re-size or you leave the second station empty and de-cap/re-size in station 1.

    Dollar for dollar you can't go wrong with Lee. I can't speak for Dillon or Hornady presses as I have never used either. After the Load Master though, I can't imagine spending the money on a Dillon. Maybe if I were reloading more than a couple K/month. I suspect the the Dillon is more durable than the Lee but I haven't seen any indication that Lee will wear out any time soon.

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    Can the charging die be moved to position 2? That would leave room for an RCBS Lockout Die in position 3. If not, is there any other way of doing a powder check on the Load Master Progressive?

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    Member Array BobR1's Avatar
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    I am on my third Dillon Press. I started with the old 450, then a 550B and now a current model 550B with grease fittings.
    I reload 9mm, 38/357, 40/10mm, 44 Magnum, 45acp/460Rolland, 45 Colt, and 480 Ruger.

    Some observations, use Dillon Dies, they work better. It is very handy to pull a clip and drop the guts out for cleaning without losing the die adjustment. Pull the clip and reverse the seating plug for SWC or Round Nose.
    I have RCBS dies for about all the above calibers. I also have Dillon Dies for all the ones I load much.

    Customer service is great. I have had a problem a time or two over the last 25 years. It is nice to get someone on the phone who knows more than you do about the equipment. I have been reloading for over 40 years, when I have a problem, it is normally way past simple. The Dillon guy on the phone has always talked me through the fix, or mailed me what I needed to fix the problem. As long as Dillon stays the same as it is now, I will be a Dillon customer.
    I just wish I had a Dillon 450 back in 1977 when I started shooting IPSC. Having Missouri Bullets or Berry on tap would have also been nice. I quit shooting IPSC in 1978 because reloading on a Rock Chucker was eating up way to much of my time.

    Bob

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    Quote Originally Posted by Big_Blue View Post
    Can the charging die be moved to position 2? That would leave room for an RCBS Lockout Die in position 3. If not, is there any other way of doing a powder check on the Load Master Progressive?
    Unfortunately, no. The second station is used primarily for priming. The third station is charging. I don't see any way get around it.

    I just do a visual check as I am placing the bullet. It's easy to see into the case to verify the power charge.
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    Member Array Big_Blue's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by luvmy40 View Post
    Unfortunately, no. The second station is used primarily for priming. The third station is charging. I don't see any way get around it.

    I just do a visual check as I am placing the bullet. It's easy to see into the case to verify the power charge.
    Could I put a combo bullet set and crimp die (if there is such a thing) in the 5th position and the powder check die in position 4? Would the bullet feeder still feed to position 5?

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