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Author Topic: I want to get into reloading  (Read 2515 times)

Nytoaz1

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I want to get into reloading
« on: April 20, 2021, 08:38:53 pm »
I am looking for the pro and cons for the

Lee Classic 4 Hole Turret Press Deluxe Kit or Lee 4 Hole Turret Press with Auto Index Value Kit
Other that the classic being steel and the value being aluminum I cant tell a difference.
I am not going to do a large volume so does the metal make that much of a difference
Big price difference

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    coelacanth

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #1 on: April 20, 2021, 11:18:56 pm »
    Steel is always more durable and generally flexes less under the same amount of pressure.  I have used Lee equipment in the past and currently own one Lee press.  Some turn their nose up at the Lee equipment and say its "cheap" or "disposable" but I have found that used within its limitations it works fine.  Everyone cuts corners to produce their product at a lower price so you pays your money and you takes your chances whatever you buy. 

    My question to you is this.  You say you "want to get into reloading" so I assume you are not particularly familiar with the whole operation yet but you ask about a turret press which has never been recommended as the place to start for beginners.  Reasons vary but generally speaking it boils down to asking a novice to be cognizant of and successfully manage too many variables at the learning stage.  Unless you have a mentor or a coach to help you or are already somewhat familiar with reloading from past experience a single stage press will be much easier to master. 

    It allows you to understand what happens at each stage of the process, measure your results and reduce the complexity of the operation until you are completely comfortable with your ability to reload ammunition safely and effectively.  Yes, it slows down the process of reloading but it advances your understanding of what happens when you pull the handle on the press better than any other design.

    Reducing variables allows you to learn the finer points of producing loaded rounds without chasing down more than one problem at a time.  You can do all that with a turret press but setting up multiple stations gives you the opportunity to overlook potential problems and complicates your record keeping - and trust me on this, you definitely want to keep a logbook of what you did, when you did it, how you did it and how it turned out.

    There is a reason pilots learn how to fly in utterly reliable, low powered, single engine aircraft and the same principle applies here.
    « Last Edit: April 20, 2021, 11:21:59 pm by coelacanth »
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    eugenesan

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #2 on: April 21, 2021, 07:28:35 am »
    I agree with previous poster and believe Lee turret presses are perfect for beginners.

    Also, people mistakenly assume recent Lee presses made from aluminum. They are not. The only aluminum part is the turret, the rest is steel or ferrous alloys. Appearance can be misleading.

    Also, I would consider Lee Auto Breech Lock Pro.
    For a beginner, It can be used as an upsidedown turret press and later as a progressive.
    But, you should know that progressive presses (regardless of how they are used) bring a lot of complications especially if the press is from a budget segment.

    Without budget and availability considerations, I would start with Lee Value Turret Press and later would acquire fancy progressive press from Hornady or Dillon.
    « Last Edit: April 21, 2021, 07:34:27 am by eugenesan »

    Hi Standard

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #3 on: April 21, 2021, 07:46:43 am »
    What Coelacanth said is spot on!  :thumbup

    I started out with a single stage and I still load on one. I started out with an RCBS Jr Press and I currently have a Rockchucker. I also have a Lee Turret Press. I have to say that while I like it, it does have a very small amount of  slop in it. Not enough to make much of a difference when making most handgun ammunition. The slop comes in the fit between the aluminum turret and the steel ring holding the turret. It’s not a lot. But I would not load rifle ammunition on it. I also have a Lee Breech Lock made from cast aluminum. I use it mostly for mundane chores like swaging primer pockets and swaging cast boolits.

    I would recommend a single stage “O” shaped press to start with. Like the Lee single stage or the RCBS Rockchucker, etc. There are quite a few on the market from all the different manufacturers. They are all steel, strong and can take a lot of use and abuse. You can load anything with it. The Lee Breech Lock that I mentioned above is “C” shaped and does not have the strength nor the durability IMHO that the all steel “O” shaped presses have. After loading on a single stage for so many years I went to the Lee Turret Press because I can easily load 200-300 and maybe more rounds an hour with it. But again I only load handgun ammo on it. There is too much slop for my taste to load precision rifle ammo with it.

    patkelly4370

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #4 on: April 21, 2021, 09:39:18 am »
    My first and current press is a Lee turret.
    Able to start out single stage. Later can go progressiveish.
    When things are good I can do 200 rounds an hour.


    Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk


    5632

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #5 on: April 22, 2021, 02:30:35 pm »
    Go over to "Dillon Precision" and get great information and any type of loader you want.

    JarheadAZ

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #6 on: April 23, 2021, 10:53:06 am »
    I used my Dillon 550b during the 1990's as a team press, and repeatedly reminded the team members that if they had to use a lot of force, they were doing it wrong. Still, they managed break parts, usually in the priming system. I like the interchangeable tool head. One sets up the dies once, then only messes with them as time changes case dimension/seating requirements. I like this enough to have separate tool heads and die sets, even for duplicate chamberings in different rifles.

    The one thing I dislike (among other folks) about them is the standard powder measure. The system needs one, the cost is suitable, and it gets the job done. But there are others and I prefer the RCBS Chargemaster Lite. Probably not the absolute best, it does everything I ask of it and doesn't slow me down. The price was right, mostly.

    When used correctly; it should not matter what material the press is made from, because he force needed to distort/break them should never be present.

    I started with the Dillon RL550b, secondhand. IMHO, it's the perfect first press. I believe in the "Buy once, cry once" principle. Yes, it's a big bite; but you'll never need to take a bigger one, and you'll never be tempted to replace it at a far greater combined cost. The Dillon is a great press, well worth the cost, and certainly good enough for the likes of me. Mine's lasted me for three decades, another guy for who knows how long, and the team for about 6 of those years too. I bought that setup in the early 1990's for $250, and I got a lot of mileage out of that investment.

    Although I've seen some dandy (and pricey...) mods available for them; the press works fine just as delivered,.

    If you break one, the odds strongly favor your having used it wrong.

    Greg
    « Last Edit: April 23, 2021, 11:53:10 am by JarheadAZ »
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    5632

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #7 on: April 23, 2021, 12:59:48 pm »
    Keep in mind that Dillon guarantees everything for ever. 

    coelacanth

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #8 on: April 23, 2021, 03:58:15 pm »
    Yup.  Good stuff.  I still have my old RL 450 and it works fine.   :coffee
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    hprm1a

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #9 on: April 25, 2021, 08:02:13 am »
    I am looking for the pro and cons for the

    Lee Classic 4 Hole Turret Press Deluxe Kit or Lee 4 Hole Turret Press with Auto Index Value Kit
    Other that the classic being steel and the value being aluminum I cant tell a difference.
    I am not going to do a large volume so does the metal make that much of a difference
    Big price difference

    Yes it is absolutely worth it to reload.

    Lee stuff works fine a friend made thousands of 223 and 45acp using their cheap starter kit. I prefer RCBS. Better built and easier to deal with warranty wise. For example I have their priming setup that has a long tube for the primers and I screwed up the tube. They sent me a couple new ones. Another time my rcbs dies were making a ring mark on match bullets and I sent it in - they modified the die so that it seats them perfectly w/o any marks.

    Also my rcbs presses and uniflows were inherited from relatives so they are old and still work perfectly.

    Intel6

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #10 on: April 26, 2021, 07:25:31 am »
    Keep in mind that Dillon guarantees everything for ever.

    Mostly,  Electronics and their big commercial grade machine don't have a lifetime warranty.

    Brian10x

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #11 on: June 19, 2021, 03:46:26 pm »
    I've used the Lee turret for almost 30 years.

    When I got extra cash, I though I'd get into a progressive. I tried a Lee (2 types), an RCBS, a Hornady, and 3 years ago the king of the hill, the Dillon 650. 

    After trying so many progressives, I realized a progressive is not for me. Just too much fussing around an just too many things to adjust. That, and I'm anal about watching every case on every station.

    In the other extreme, its too tedious and time consuming, for me at least, to use a single stage. I mostly reload pistol ammo, and ultra precision is not necessary.

    I find the Lee auto indexing turret to be "just right".

    Jfri247

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #12 on: June 19, 2021, 05:00:05 pm »
    Agree with what has been stated here.  I will only add to the notion of starting with a single stage, and then moving to a progressive.  I still use both.  I don't need a progressive for some of my calibers so I still do them on a single stage, the ones I shoot more frequently I have a dillon 650 for those.  I loaded at least 30k rounds on a single stage of all calibers 38,9mm,45,45lc,30-30,30-06 on my single.  It really allows you to understand each step and the nuances involved, before launching into a progressive that can complicate things. 

    Either way, whatever you decide, ask LOTS of questions.  It is a WONDERFUL part of the gun hobby and can be very therapeutic all on it's own. 

    coelacanth

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #13 on: June 19, 2021, 08:31:41 pm »
    I've used the Lee turret for almost 30 years.

    When I got extra cash, I though I'd get into a progressive. I tried a Lee (2 types), an RCBS, a Hornady, and 3 years ago the king of the hill, the Dillon 650. 

    After trying so many progressives, I realized a progressive is not for me. Just too much fussing around an just too many things to adjust. That, and I'm anal about watching every case on every station.

    In the other extreme, its too tedious and time consuming, for me at least, to use a single stage. I mostly reload pistol ammo, and ultra precision is not necessary.

    I find the Lee auto indexing turret to be "just right".
    I completely get the part about watching every case at every station.  My old RL 450 is about the right speed for me on that score but I occasionally find myself lusting after one of those Redding turret presses.   :yes
    " A republic, if you can keep it. "
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    piratediverjefff

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #14 on: July 01, 2021, 09:04:24 pm »
    I completely get the part about watching every case at every station.  My old RL 450 is about the right speed for me on that score but I occasionally find myself lusting after one of those Redding turret presses.   :yes

    I'm only loading for rifles and bought a Redding T-7 turret press(with an extra turret so I don't have to swap out dies),Redding Competition die sets in 300WM and 338LM,Redding Comp. shell holder sets for each,etc.,etc.,etc.Makes for a nice setup but can get pricey,especially the Comp. die sets.Luckily I stocked up on components before the pandemic as there's not much out there now and may not be for a while(30 lbs. of assorted powders,3000 Federal 210 and 215M primers,1000 Berger bullets for the 300WM and 1000 Berger 250 and 300 gr. OTM's for the 338LM,new extra Lapua brass for both calibers,etc.).Now it's too damned hot out for me to go shooting for a while,come on October! ;-D
    Don't Tread On Me

    Brian10x

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #15 on: July 02, 2021, 03:15:49 pm »
    The thing is, I love my auto-indexing Lee turret.

    Single stage too slow, progressive too "busy".

    What I've always wanted was a super precision (auto-indexing!) turret.  What I wouldn't give for a Dillon if they made a turret that auto-indexed.  But no body makes one. Or is there one I missed? Must be AUTO-INDEXING.

    BigBronco

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #16 on: August 01, 2021, 08:58:18 pm »
    You will do just fine with your choice OP. Running a progressive is more in line with being a machine operator. For true hand crafted ammo there is nothing like a single station. And yes I own both and multiples of both kind.

    Should you outgrow the Turret you will have progressed along the way from being a beginner.
    "Life is a long song" Jethro Tull

    RJ

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #17 on: August 02, 2021, 06:30:49 am »
    started out with the lees, then, used a dillon 550 of a friends and never looked back, now proud owner of 5, 550s and a 650, which will be the holy grail of reloaders for only two calibers.
    i reload for a lot of different rounds, its a zen thing, i can get in the zone and pump some rounds out pretty quickly,

    good luck, takes patience and fortitude sometimes to set them up, but once done a simple check every hundy rounds or so and walla one is on the way to factory ammo freedom
    Rj

    sparx

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #18 on: August 22, 2021, 08:35:43 am »
    Dillon 550 since 1989, Dillon has just about replaced the entire press under warranty since then, due to my frequent use of the press.
    RCBS single stage press with zero issues for 30+ years.

    sparx

    leadman

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #19 on: December 08, 2021, 07:14:38 pm »
    A person can use the auto indexing Lee Turret press by just removing the rod that fits into the turret head. Then it can be used like any other single stage press or manually indexed turret. When comfortable with it put the rod back in an go for it.

    Harley0711

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #20 on: January 05, 2022, 08:34:33 pm »
    Great Hobby, saves money

    Do it Alone with NO distractions, be careful

    Check & recheck powder

    Bwana John

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #21 on: January 06, 2022, 02:34:12 pm »
    Great Hobby, saves money

    Do it Alone with NO distractions, be careful

    Check & recheck powder

    You aren't going to spend less money reloading.

    But... Chances are you will shoot a lot more if you do it enough.

    ExCal

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #22 on: January 07, 2022, 10:54:04 am »
    Will you be loading pistol and small rifle (223) and/or large rifle 308 & belted magnums?

    Lee is fine for the small stuff. I sold off everything and just kept my Rockchucker. Then I decided to load up all my pistol stuff I had lying around (about 15,000 rounds) so I replaced the RCBS progressive I had sold with a Lee Auto Breech Lock Pro https://www.midwayusa.com/product/1019986419?pid=272349 It works ok. The brass feeder works ok the primer feed is weird but works ok once you get the knack of it. The disc powder measure works but you're limited on charges. Save your money on the bullet feed. A PIA to set up and doesn't work at all with heavy (165 .40) bullets the jaws don't grip tight enough to hold smooth copper - it might work with lubed lead.
    I've got a bunch of larger rifle calibers to load and I'll use the RCBS for those.

    Single stage is the way to start. My process has always been. Size/deprime/prime set in loading block neck down and check all primers went block is full. Remove and fill with powder placing back in the block. When done look (use a flashlight) in each to assure everyone has powder and it's about the same level in each. The put the bullet in.
    With reloading it pays to be anal.
    « Last Edit: January 07, 2022, 10:58:36 am by ExCal »

    RJ

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #23 on: January 09, 2022, 06:12:11 am »
    well just about every vendor i have and others i shoot with have dealt with over the years has shared, primers will be the commodity of reloaders this year, very limited supply, and they said ""VERY"" loudly, to non existent for sale to public, while there will be a tad here and there, nothing like ''back in the day''

    i'm setting on about 100k of assortment, left over from a huge buy, wished i had not sold off a lot after the buy, but who in the world saw this coming.

    have had orders in for quite a few primers for over a year, and nada from any vendors we have used.

    i recommend, if you see them buy them, if you want to reload, nothing in the shooting world is gonna get cheaper, jmo.
    just hope some in a modicum of volume come available, and if so stock deep, shoot more, live the dream
    rj

    medved

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    Re: I want to get into reloading
    « Reply #24 on: January 14, 2022, 01:08:47 pm »
    I started off with an RCBS RockerChucker. Then moved the RCBS 4X4 Progressive. Then finally the the Dillon 550B. I still use the Rockchucker with a Dillon 1200 case trimmer the 4X4 for 308 and the Dillon for Everything else. But I switched over to the RCBS Charge Master for precision reloading of 308 and 556. The Dillon Powder dispenser is OK for loading my milsurps and pistol calibers but not for precision loads. My brother in law uses the Lee press and powder measure and seems to be happy with it.

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