A Reloading Question

This is a discussion on A Reloading Question within the Reloading forums, part of the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics category; http://www.beartoothbullets.com/tech...h_notes.htm/51 Here's a good one for you. You will need powder, primers, and bullets if you already have cases. Otherwise, those too. Austin...

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Thread: A Reloading Question

  1. #16
    VIP Member Array aus71383's Avatar
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    http://www.beartoothbullets.com/tech...h_notes.htm/51

    Here's a good one for you. You will need powder, primers, and bullets if you already have cases. Otherwise, those too.

    Austin

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  3. #17
    Senior Member Array wvshooter's Avatar
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    Great post Hot Guns.

    With the numbers you are talking about a single stage press would be a waste of time.

    Why don't you outline the steps of the actual loading on a progressive press so that those of us who have never used one can see how it's done.

  4. #18
    Distinguished Member Array Colin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shooter1 View Post
    Complicated? No. Expensive? Doesn't have to be. Around $250 should get you a Lee Turret Press Kit w/dies, and enough compotents to load 1000rds, assuming you already have the brass. That's pretty close to the cost of 1000rds of .45 ammo at your local gun store. The second thousand and subsiquent rounds will be much cheaper. Reloading equipment pays for it's self quickly. It can also be a great hobby. Using the turret, you can easily load 150-200rds per hour.Your call.
    str1
    Good advice a turret press will allow you to make 100 bullets an hour comfortable and still be safe. Get the Lee reloading book with it and a set of powder scales. Also got the adjustable autodisk and a few other things. Lee is easy to deal with. if you get the turret press, also get a spare rachet thingy and the plastic holder it fit into. As you are learning you are likely to distort this part and it will alter how the machine performs, easy to replace and cheap.

    go slow always consult the book and enjoy.

  5. #19
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    Why don't you outline the steps of the actual loading on a progressive press so that those of us who have never used one can see how it's done.
    Ok..I'll give it a try.
    The Dillon 550B has 4 stages that use four separate dies. These dies are arranged on a die block that is removable from the press. Once they are set for a particular load, unless one experiments they can be removed from the press and put back in place without any further adjustment.

    Once the dies are set, you place the case in the first stage which is the decapping,sizing and priming stage. A pull of the lever puts the case into the die, which deprimes it and sizes it at the same time. Bringing the lever back up primes the case using a primer feeder that holds about 110 primers. Now that you have the first stage done, you flip the shellplate with you thumb and start the first case into the powder die. While you flip the shell holder around, you pick up another case and insert it into the first stage.

    The second stage pushes the case up into the powder die which uses a case specific bushing to activate the powder bar. The bushing also "bells" the case which allows the bullet to be started easier.Pushing the lever down pushes the case up into the powder bar which dispenses the powder down into the case. That ends the second stage.Once again, using your thumb, you flip the shell holder to stage three.

    Now that you are on stage three, using your right hand you place another case into stage one. Now you have 3 cases in the shell holder and the process repeats itself with each throw of the lever.

    At stage three, using your left hand, you place a bullet on top of the case. As you pull the lever, the bullet is seated into the case. You flip the shell holder with your thumb advancing it. You pick up another case with the right hand and place it in stage one.

    Now onto stage four, the final stage. This is the crimp die. Throw the lever and the bullet is crimped. Using your thumb to advance the shell holder, a loaded shell falls into the bin.

    Now, you have four cases in the shell holder. The key to the speed is to place a new case into stage one and a bullet into the case on stage three. From that point on, every throw of the lever produces a loader round. You repeat the process which until you run out of primers. If you have multiple primer tubes already loaded, you simply dump one into the primer feed, that takes all of about 10 seconds.

    You then continue the process. Placing the cases in a bin at your right hand and a bin of bullets at your left increases the speed of loading. The average speed of the Dillon by someone that is taking their time is around 500 rounds per hour. I personally have done as many as 600, that is with several loaded primer tubes and all of the cases and bullets positioned so as not to lose any time.

    The thing about it is, once you really start cranking them out, its amazing how fast the primers depletes as well as the powder in the powder measure.

    Changing die blocks is as simple as removing two pins in the top of the press. If you have the same primer size, lets say you are loading 9mm at one setting and .357 at another which used the same primers and powder, you just change the die block,change the shell plate and adjust the powder measure accordingly and take off running. A caliber changout takes about anywhere from 5-10 minutes.

    If you go from a small primer to a large primer, you must change the primer feed, that takes about 5 minutes.

    The thing is, you get quality ammunition with repeatable results. There is no compromise due to speed.Many shooting competitions have been won using ammo loaded on Dillon presses. The Dillon company is fantastic when it comes to parts.

    Years ago, my two teen aged boys were messing around in my shop and somehow the cracked the plastic tube on my powder measure. I called Dillon and asked them how much one cost, fully intending to pay for it.They insisted on sending me a new one...free of charge.

    Service like that is hard to beat.

    Not to slam Lee, any, but their progressive presses arent even it the same league.Everyone that I know that had one got rid of it and eventually bought a Dillon. Yes, I know that a Dillon and the stuff that goes with it is expensive, but here you truly get what you pay for. Once you get every thing adjusted where you want it, it pretty well stays put...something that the Lee progressive presses arent known for, being pot metal and plastic.

    A progressive press really saves alot of time if you shoot alot. Even if you dont shoot alot, you can load a bunch at one sitting and shoot for the rest of the year. Having used an RCBS single stage for years, I got to where I was spending way to much time reloading due to the volume I was shooting at the local gun club every Thursday night. I was loading all week long just to shoot it all up.

    Actually, my wife got me the Dillon for Christmas. Shes says it was the best money she ever spent.
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  6. #20
    VIP Member Array farronwolf's Avatar
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    I use a Lyman, turret press. It is no where near as fast as the Dillon, or no where near as costly.

    The thing I liked about the turret press, and one reason other than cost was that I could set up two pistol calibers, or three rifle calibers per turret, depending on they type of dies your using.

    Changing calibers takes about 30 seconds or 1 minute if I have to change the primer size.

    I never load one caliber at a time. I do my reloading in stages. I will decap all of one caliber, and start tumbling, then move to the next caliber.

    After all of the decaping and tumbling is done then I move to the resizing and priming of all the calibers, then I powder and load the lead of all of them.

    Like I said this is no where near as fast as the Dillon, but much faster than a single stage. I can work up loads in small batches if I want to without lots of time spent on setting up equipment if I make changes to bullet weights, etc.

    I usually load somewhere between 300 to 1200 rounds during the week that I begin the process depending on how much brass I have accumulated. A couple of hours in the evening for a few evenings and I am done for a month or so, depending on how much I have had time to shoot.

    The real suggestion I have is to find some people that reload and watch them. Get the feel for how it is done and the time it takes to set up and how many rounds you can get for your time spent. Before you spend any money, know what you want out of the reloading process.

    If you can afford the Dillon progressive press and like the idea then go for it. If not there are lots of other options out there. For me it was a turret press, and I am happy with it. I enjoy the process and have learned a lot about ballistics and bullet characteristics by loading my own, and for other people that shoot with me.

    Good luck.
    Just remember that shot placement is much more important with what you carry than how big a bang you get with each trigger pull.
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  7. #21
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    No matter what one decides to go with, the stuff will never be cheaper than it is now. With the cost of steel and gas on the rise...dont wait too long.
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  8. #22
    Senior Member Array .45acp's Avatar
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    Another vote for the Dillon and their great warranty.

    I lost a spring, 2 days after calling Dillon I had 3 new springs in the mail.
    I have the 650 w auto bullet feed, next up will be the auto primer.

    Note- I also have a Lee single stage that I load 9mm on. I don't shoot 9mm as often as .45 acp so it doesn't matter if it's slow and I enjoy the process of reloading.

    Only problem with the Dillon 650 is that it's so fast you'll go broke trying to keep buying components to feed it.
    BTW, it also has the low powder, low primer and undercharge/overcharge sensors so it'll be very difficult to make a mistake.
    PC has become the term for Political Cowardice.

  9. #23
    Senior Member Array kavity's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aus71383 View Post
    http://www.beartoothbullets.com/tech...h_notes.htm/51

    Here's a good one for you. You will need powder, primers, and bullets if you already have cases. Otherwise, those too.

    Austin

    ^That setup looks like it would take forever to do 400 rounds of ammo. I would like to shoot 100 rounds a week at least.



    Why not as a scoop? Will it go BANG?

  10. #24
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    Why not as a scoop? Will it go BANG?
    No.

    Inconsistent powder weights. You cant do it the same way twice, so the powder will compact in the dipper differently each time.

    Dippers go way back into time. They just arent very accurate. That is why very few people use them these days. A powder measure is much more accurate.
    The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those that speak it...- George Orwell

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