is reloading cheaper

This is a discussion on is reloading cheaper within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; me and my dad shoot a good bit being as we have a range in our yard and ammo is a good bit of money ...

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  1. #1
    Member Array glock42's Avatar
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    is reloading cheaper

    me and my dad shoot a good bit being as we have a range in our yard and ammo is a good bit of money for 9mm and we want to start reloading . so about much does it actually save $ wise

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  3. #2
    Distinguished Member Array RevolvingMag's Avatar
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    I can't remember who said it, but one of our senior members put it very nicely- "You don't SAVE any money; you just shoot more for the same amount". I don't have any reloading experience- I don't have a good work station or the money to get started right now- but I think that sounds about right according to the pricing I've done.
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    Member Array gigamortis's Avatar
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    I reload 9mm with 135gr Bayou Bullets @ 7 cents ea. Along with that is a primer @3 cents, and 3.2gr of Titegroup powder @ 1 cent. All total for one round it costs me 11 cents per round, which expands out to $11.00 per hundred. The last I saw WWB at Wally World was $22.00 for the 100 round box. All brass I use is range pickup brass which is free to me.

    The load I listed above just makes the power factor floor for IDPA and USPSA. This strength level is about 7% lower than factory ammo, so it will be easier on your gun.

    I load .45 ACP for $14.00 per hundred. A hundred from Wally World is about $55 per hundred! You can really save some money if you have calibers other than the widespread 9mm.
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    Senior Member Array The Old Anglo's Avatar
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    I`m reloading .45ACP for about 16 a hundred. Another new hobby and I shoot more...It`s FUN!.

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    Distinguished Member Array claude clay's Avatar
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    i have been teaching reloading for many years. you shoot more and what you want to--power or accuracy or factory replication.

    set up can be $300 ( Lee turret) to $600 for Dillon sq-d (pistol only)
    than figure 12 cents per round for lead or 5 cents more for plated. more still for fancy 357 HP.

    if you are not strongly mechanically inclined find someone who is experienced to help you set up.

    good luck & don't load distracted
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  7. #6
    Member Array carverelli's Avatar
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    if you already own the brass, it generally saves you about half. BTW, I carry factory loaded ammo, but I have anywhere from 4-500 bullets to make more "carry" ammo if the shtf and I can't find it or its unavailable.

    With our chronograph, I can fine tune my reloads to equal that of my carry ammo so recoil and ballistics are close to identical.

    With our dillon 650 I can churn out several thousand rounds in an afternoon if need be. 223 ammo -same way. Components used in ammunition have a pretty long shelf life.... for now! I can see the government putting restrictions down the road on how long primers and powder will store.

    If your worried to the point of having a year long food storage, then I'd be worried about having enough firepower and ammo to protect it when the shtf.

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    VIP Member Array dukalmighty's Avatar
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    I cast my own bullets from used lead wheel weights,and with the casting equipment I have invested in can cast and lube around 500 bullets an hour,I have a Dillon 550 reloader with dies for 9mm,40s&w,45acp,38/357,44 mag,380acp,223,308,I have a case feeder for pistol cases and crank out about 500 completed rounds an hour,My Pistol ammo costs me .01 bullet,.02primer,.01 powder,so about 4-$5.00 100.
    Now since I make my own 223 bullet tips from spent 22lr brass it costs me 223 .01 bullet,.02 primer.05 powder,so 223 is about $8.00 100
    So I can honestly say YES reloading saves me a lot of money,and I shoot all I want
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    Member Array BitReaver's Avatar
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    When looking at the cost of reloading one has to look at more than the cost of the bullet materials. The initial cost of a solid set-up, including dies, can be around $600-$800. More or less depending on quality and features. That is a lot of money to make up in ammo. If you were to shoot a lot you can make that up fairly quickly, if you don't shoot alot, it will take a long time.

    One also has to factor in the time to procure the materials then do the actual reloading (including cleaning and inspecting used brass), very few people I think can say they have so much spare time they can consider it "free". If you are reloading you aren't doing other things like working, honey-do lists, children, shooting, etc.

    If you don't have access to lots of spent brass, i.e. a range, and only reload your own brass, you need to consider that you will have to throw out some spent brass each time you shoot. You will be unable to find some as well, so over time you will have to continue to buy brass, which is the situation I would be in.

    For me personally, it would take me a very long time just to get a return on my initial investment, and since I don't have a source of free used brass, I wouldn't be saving enough money to make it worth it to reload. A friend of mine who does part-time work at a gun shop contends that for the average joe the best argument for reloading is the ability to set your own standards for the power of your ammo.

    For dukalmighty, who has the 1) skills, 2) equipment and 3) time to pretty much literally make his own ammo I can see him saving a lot of $$. But I think he is far from the "average joe".
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    If u want to save some and hav fun..I have a lee hand loader dies....plenty of fun there and latter on u can get a good scale, powder measure . But they r limited to one caliber...I shoot 357 a lot

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    Senior Member Array Beans's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dukalmighty View Post
    I cast my own bullets from used lead wheel weights,and with the casting equipment I have invested in can cast and lube around 500 bullets an hour,I have a Dillon 550 reloader with dies for 9mm,40s&w,45acp,38/357,44 mag,380acp,223,308,I have a case feeder for pistol cases and crank out about 500 completed rounds an hour,My Pistol ammo costs me .01 bullet,.02primer,.01 powder,so about 4-$5.00 100.
    Now since I make my own 223 bullet tips from spent 22lr brass it costs me 223 .01 bullet,.02 primer.05 powder,so 223 is about $8.00 100
    So I can honestly say YES reloading saves me a lot of money,and I shoot all I want
    Although I don't make my own .223 bullets I agree with the Duke on the price of the pistol ammo, when you/I cast your/my own bullets. More bank for the buck

  12. #11
    Senior Member Array Beans's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BitReaver View Post
    When looking at the cost of reloading one has to look at more than the cost of the bullet materials. The initial cost of a solid set-up, including dies, can be around $600-$800. More or less depending on quality and features. That is a lot of money to make up in ammo. If you were to shoot a lot you can make that up fairly quickly, if you don't shoot alot, it will take a long time.

    One also has to factor in the time to procure the materials then do the actual reloading (including cleaning and inspecting used brass), very few people I think can say they have so much spare time they can consider it "free". If you are reloading you aren't doing other things like working, honey-do lists, children, shooting, etc.

    If you don't have access to lots of spent brass, i.e. a range, and only reload your own brass, you need to consider that you will have to throw out some spent brass each time you shoot. You will be unable to find some as well, so over time you will have to continue to buy brass, which is the situation I would be in.

    For me personally, it would take me a very long time just to get a return on my initial investment, and since I don't have a source of free used brass, I wouldn't be saving enough money to make it worth it to reload. A friend of mine who does part-time work at a gun shop contends that for the average joe the best argument for reloading is the ability to set your own standards for the power of your ammo.

    For dukalmighty, who has the 1) skills, 2) equipment and 3) time to pretty much literally make his own ammo I can see him saving a lot of $$. But I think he is far from the "average joe".
    I started reloading in 1970. Comparing the cost of my equipment then to now is quite a price difference. Ever comparing the cost of my Dillon 550b ( starting in1981) Dillon 400 to 450 to 550 to 550B is quite a price jump. The 550b has loaded over 500,000 rds and may have passed the 1,000,000 rd mark if not it is pushing it hard.

    What has helped is that I still have some of my original reloading equipment and still use it,, RCBS single stage press and a Lyman Spar-T press.

    One also has to factor in the time to procure the materials then do the actual reloading (including cleaning and inspecting used brass), very few people I think can say they have so much spare time they can consider it "free". If you are reloading you aren't doing other things like working, honey-do lists, children, shooting, etc.
    AS far as my time reloading time goes I am retired. The less money I spend on factory ammo the more shooting I can do, by reloading. If I had to depend on my monthly income to control my shooting habits I would shoot much less. I shoot an average of at least twice a week. The honey-do's still get done. We visit our children/grandchildren as often as we can. Some are in CT, some are in RI some are in NV. So at home it is just my wife and me, our 2 GSD's guard dogs, my Jeep wrangler and all the other hobby equipment ( reloading, prospecting, exploring and photographing ghost towns).

    I agree for some people the time factor wouldn't work. But some of those that don't have the time spend hours working on a boat, restoring/building a car, sitting in a bar after work ETC all of that also takes time.

  13. #12
    Member Array jack76590's Avatar
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    I note the OP lives in Paris, France. So US cost comparisons of factory vs. reloaded ammunition may not apply to him.

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    Unless you buy components in bulks, you won't make a large savings on 9mm target loads since the price of factory ammo has come back down to more realistic prices. I buy a few hundred primers at a time, keep one Lb. of powder on hand, and buy LRNs for my .45 ACP in boxes of 500. It costs me $9-10 per box of reloads, which is cetainly less than the $18 or so for factory-loaded range ammo. Of course, if I bought primers by the 1000s, 8-lb. cans of powder, and huge lots of bullets, the saving would be greater (and I once did back in my more active reloading days with multiple calibers).

    Reloading should be looked at as more of an extension of the shooting sport rather than a simple savings. It takes time to recoup the the investment in the equipment. If you're looking for mass quantities of reloads, then you're looking at a progressive reloader and higher expense initially. For me it's one more hobby and my therapeutic time.
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    Member Array Tex32Cal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by glock42 View Post
    me and my dad shoot a good bit being as we have a range in our yard and ammo is a good bit of money for 9mm and we want to start reloading .
    I reload for quite a few calibers, rifle and pistol. To me, reloading is almost as much fun as shooting. However, I have never put a calculator to the cost savings, so I can't comment on that aspect of it.
    Speaking from experience though, I will say this about reloading. You can get into a lot of trouble unless you keep a clear head and have no distractions while re-loading, especially while using a progressive press. You must have your head in the game at all times lest you dump a double charge of powder in a cartridge case. This is easily done as some cases, such as the 38 special, hold a lot more powder than is required for a single charge. I double charged a 45 ACP round once, and the results were not at all pleasant.
    Please be careful!

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    Member Array carverelli's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tex32Cal View Post
    I reload for quite a few calibers, rifle and pistol. To me, reloading is almost as much fun as shooting. However, I have never put a calculator to the cost savings, so I can't comment on that aspect of it.
    Speaking from experience though, I will say this about reloading. You can get into a lot of trouble unless you keep a clear head and have no distractions while re-loading, especially while using a progressive press. You must have your head in the game at all times lest you dump a double charge of powder in a cartridge case. This is easily done as some cases, such as the 38 special, hold a lot more powder than is required for a single charge. I double charged a 45 ACP round once, and the results were not at all pleasant.
    Please be careful!

    Michael
    When my brother and I went in with my dad on our Dillon 650, we bought the powder check die on accident. Now that I'm reloading pistol ammo I realize the benefit of this "extra die" that came with the unit. Every time a primed case goes up the the shellplate, a rod connected to the die is inserted into case. If the powder charge is less or more than normal a little buzzer goes off, and I can find out whats wrong

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