Help for an Old Newbie - or is it a New Oldie?

Help for an Old Newbie - or is it a New Oldie?

This is a discussion on Help for an Old Newbie - or is it a New Oldie? within the Reloading forums, part of the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics category; Hi All, I've been an avid shooter for about 40 years, and was pretty active reloading "back in the day". Got awfully busy, though, and ...

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Thread: Help for an Old Newbie - or is it a New Oldie?

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    Help for an Old Newbie - or is it a New Oldie?

    Hi All,

    I've been an avid shooter for about 40 years, and was pretty active reloading "back in the day". Got awfully busy, though, and after a move, didn't have a good work space to reload, so my activity dropped way off. In 2005, Hurricane Rita brought it to a screeching halt when most of my equipment and supplies were damaged, lost, or destroyed.

    I'm finally getting back into reloading, and have a couple of (maybe dumb) questions for you guys who are currently "up to speed":

    My interest is primarily in .38/.357, .44 Mag/Special, and .45 ACP for handguns and .308 and .30-30 for rifles. I will also want to load some .223 but it's not a priority. 7.5mm Swiss would be nice, and I have dies, but reloadable brass is kind of scarce (and pricey), and I don't shoot it all that much. I'll also have capability to reload 9mm, but I don't expect to do much of it, if any.

    I have a pretty good stash of IMR3031 for the rifles, and have picked up some CFE223 and some LeveRevolution, so I think I'm pretty well covered there. IMR3031 was one of my favorite rifle powders back in the day. I plan to keep using it, since I have some on hand, and it doesn't seem too hard to come by in the stores.

    The ONLY pistol-suitable powder I've been able to find around here is 700X. I have no past experience with it, but it looks like data are available for most of my pistol calibers. Browsing DC and other sources, I seem to come up with a lot of folks reporting good success with it. Aside from tricky metering due to the large grain size, is there anything else I should know about this powder. Pros or cons?

    I recently bought a Lee turret press, and I'm in the process of getting it set up. My old press was an RCBS single-stage. I went into a store in Houston the other day looking for shell holders, but the only presses & accessories they carry are RCBS. I really think I remembered the shell holders being interchangeable between most brands, and I'm even pretty sure that I had bought and used two or three different brands for my old RCBS press, but the fellow in the store insisted the RCBS shell holders would not work in a Lee press. When I got home, I tried a couple of my old RCBS shell holders in the Lee press, and they seemed to fit fine, although I haven't tried to load anything with them. So, who's full of it? Him or me?

    TIA for your replies, and any other advice you might care to offer.
    Last edited by Kilowatt3; March 5th, 2015 at 04:36 PM. Reason: Shell Holders - NOT Dies!!!
    Regards,
    Jim
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    Thread size is the same it should not any difference. I think the guy that told you that was full of it. I have been reloading for 30 years myself.
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    Quote Originally Posted by donp326 View Post
    Thread size is the same it should not any difference. I think the guy that told you that was full of it. I have been reloading for 30 years myself.
    Holy smokes! I just realized I said "dies" when I actually meant "shell holders". Dunno what I was thinking!

    Thanks for the reply, but I asked the wrong question!
    Regards,
    Jim
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    Nearly all press makes use standard 7x14 threads. Lee uses the same stand ard threads as others. The only exception I know of is Lyman used a different thred, or at least used to. Your sales guy is full of it.

    I've never used 700X. I used HP-38/WW231 solely because I have published load data with it for all pistol calibers I reload (9mm Para, 9mm Mak, .45 ACP). It meters so well that after the first few cases, I only check the drops about every 25 rounds and have yet to have to make a load adjustment.

    Edited--Lee hand primers use "special" shell holders, which Lee seems to change with every updated model. That why when my old Lee hand primer wore out, I replaced it with an RCBS primer, which uses standard shell holders.
    Last edited by OldVet; March 5th, 2015 at 08:08 PM.
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    Thanks for the info, OldVet.

    My shell holder question was about them fitting the turret press. I'm pretty sure they will work, but the gun store guy said no.
    Regards,
    Jim
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    VIP Member Array coffeecup's Avatar
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    They will work just fine ! I use Lee ,Lyman ,RCBS interchangeably in my Lyman loader.
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    Senior Member Array jem102's Avatar
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    IIRC the shell holders for the hand held priming unit are/ were different.
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    700X might be a slow powder for .45acp. Usable, but might be prone to make fireballs.
    I use Win231 for my .380, 9mm and .45 rounds. Otherwise, I would use Unique. Of course there are others!

    Get a new reloading manual. Same "old" loads, plus "new" powders also. Better than guessing, trying to read 20+ year old notes.

    Shell holders are numbered differently between manufacturers, but DO fit correctly between presses.
    I have a mix of RCBS and Lee shellholders. A mix of RCBS and Lee dies as well.
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    Thanks for the info, fellows!

    To clarify, the shell holder question was specific to the turret press - no hand-priming tool. I've got my answer and it's just as I thought - the RCBS shell holders should work fine.

    I've got a couple of new manuals plus a lot of good data from the manufacturers' Web sites, so should be OK with load data. Just wondered if anyone has any tips specific to the 700x powder at this point.

    Thanks again!
    Regards,
    Jim
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    Senior Member Array The Old Anglo's Avatar
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    I`ve used 700x for an emergency load due to the lack of Win 231 and it worked out ok for reloading .45ACP.

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    I don't carry to deter crime. I carry to defend myself!

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    Hey KW, let me know when you get around to loading for your K-31. I've got brass (patient lurker on Gun Broker) and lots of rifle powder, just need to get around to getting a pile of bullets. I'll be interested in comparing notes.

    I shoot a lot of .45 ACP, and more recently started loading for .38 and .44 Specials. I use Titegroup and Unique, respectively, and each has been in short supply over the past year. Ultimately I got an 8-pound jug of Titegroup on GunBroker, and as I write this I'm expecting delivery of a similar quantity of Unique at the local Bass Pro shop. I'll simply mention that both are useful supply avenues, if not necessarily at a great price point. My cost was in the $30/pound range
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    Quote Originally Posted by gasmitty View Post
    Hey KW, let me know when you get around to loading for your K-31. I've got brass (patient lurker on Gun Broker) and lots of rifle powder, just need to get around to getting a pile of bullets. I'll be interested in comparing notes...
    Hi Smitty!

    What kind of brass did you end up with? Was it new, from Starline or something, or once-fired Hornady or PPU? The only 7.5x55 ammo that I've got so far is the GP11, and we know the problem there!

    Last time I looked, IIRC, the options for reloadable brass were Starline at an obscene price, or Hornady loaded ammo, also at an obscene price! This morning, though, I see plenty of PPU ammo online on Ammoseek at $15/box or so. I may have to order a dozen boxes just to get my hands on the brass. I'm assuming the PPU is reloadable, although I don't know it for a fact (?).

    I had to laugh when I came across an article describing how you can re-form .32-20 brass into 7.5mm Swiss! I can find plenty of 7.5mm Swiss, but it's the .32-20 that's rare as hen's teeth!

    It's my understanding that you can use any ol' .308 bullet in a K31, with the appropriate load data. If you do load some up, though, it is not safe to use these in a Schmidt-Rubin 1889 (or any pre-1911 7.5x55) rifle! They had a smaller (.304") bore. You probably already knew this, but I thought I'd pass it along anyway!

    Lemme know how your reloading efforts go for the K31!
    Regards,
    Jim
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kilowatt3 View Post
    ...I had to laugh when I came across an article describing how you can re-form .32-20 brass into 7.5mm Swiss! I can find plenty of 7.5mm Swiss, but it's the .32-20 that's rare as hen's teeth!
    The more I thought about it, the more this bugged me. So, looking at the case dimensions, I see that the idea of reforming a .32-20 case into a 7.5x55 is absolutely absurd - the .32-20 is a MUCH smaller case. This baloney was from an article on the Starline web site, of all places!

    Just goes to show, you have to be careful believing what you read on the 'net.
    Regards,
    Jim
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kilowatt3 View Post
    The more I thought about it, the more this bugged me. So, looking at the case dimensions, I see that the idea of reforming a .32-20 case into a 7.5x55 is absolutely absurd - the .32-20 is a MUCH smaller case. This baloney was from an article on the Starline web site, of all places!

    Just goes to show, you have to be careful believing what you read on the 'net.
    I would guess they are speaking of the old 7.5 Swiss Revolver round not the rifle round.
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    When political power is up for grabs, personal liberty is usually one of the first casualties…

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