Thursday, November 28, 2013

Single Stage Reloading Questions

When we get our new house, I'd like to have a place to reload my own ammo. So, without any real experience in the art, I'd like to get some reloaders opinions into what gear is best. I don't mind spending the money, as long as it is quality gear. I'll also be asking for some of these items for Christmas, so hopefully (wink wink) I'll get some of them.

Reference Books?

Tumbler? Dry

Press - Single stage. Brands?

Scales - non-digital


Any other items that I have forgotten?

Thanks in Advance & Keep Right On Prepping - K


  1. I use LEE reloading equipment, and you are starting out I would recommend a single stage before moving on to the progressive 3 and 4 stage presses. Only problem I have had is with the hand primer tool. Some of the pot metal parts have broken, but that was with a lot of use. They are easy and cheap to replace. I would suggest using a hand priming tool, you know when they are seated compared to using a press. Pretty much all the reloading books and online resources are good. I use both types of scales as I tend to QA and analyze my rounds a bit too much. As far as calipers, i use a non-digital. I use a franklin tumbler with walnut media, i think it does a better job. Heard the ultra sonic tumblers are good too.

  2. The Lyman turret top press is what I use mostly so I can mount all the dies for each caliber on at once but without the expense of the higher priced stage presses. I then have a single rockchucker for things like swagger and bullet sizing dies. I also decided the automatic primer tools were way too much of a pain to use and purchased several cheaper hand primers that stay set up for each caliber I reload.

    Don't forget a case trimmer. I really like the little Lee trimmers these days as they are cheap and I just buy a separate set up for each caliber I reload and use my own battery powered rechargeable screwdriver when I need to trim cases. Saves me from having to fiddle with my adjustable trimmer each time I switch calibers.

    The Lee stuff takes some hits as being cheap and of lower quality but it does the job for me usually and is good stuff to learn on especially if you are reloading small batches of 100 or less rounds at a time. I also prefer the Lee manual for data as it seems to be less biased overall.

    I guess I am just funny. I would rather spend a bit more time doing things manually in batches when I want to than spending time fiddling with adjustments on high dollar equipment and awaiting until I have huge quantities of components to do in one sitting. My batches are usually done 100 rounds at a time.

    I will also recommend the various Lee factory crimping dies. I love those things and they work so much easier than the individual crimping dies that come with other sets.

  3. I lucked out on powder measures as I inherited my Father in Laws huge Lyman measure. It isn't digital but one of the old adjustable pour ones that is just dead on accurate. However if I was just starting out I might try and use the Lee powder measure scoops as I saved for a more expensive measure.

    The tumbler I use is a Lyman as well and I think I am using walnut media in it presently but I have used corn as well. It's always worked well enough I never looked at any of the other types.

    I have to agree with Senior above Lee stuff is great to learn on and unless you are going to reload huge quantities of the same caliber in one sitting the expensive stuff really doesn't pay off.

  4. Lyman turret press is the way to go dude

  5. I love my RCBS stuff, but the Lyman turrets do look handy. I'll mention (though you didnt ask specifically) that the one set of Hornady dies I have has a target style seater (there is a sliding collar that drops down, so you can get it just right without it moving when you grab the handle) which I love (almost, apparently, as much as I love parenthesese). I recommend the Speer, Hornady, or Nosler books, depending on which bullets you seem likely to shoot most, and the One Caliber booklets as supplements. The One Caliber series is reprinted pages of several manufacturerers manuals pertaining to one cartridge. Its quite a bit cheaper to buy a dozen if these than to buy the sometimes $80+ manufacturers books. Also, more than a few companies have their data free for download. Offhand I know Ramshot powder, IMR/Hodgdon/Win powder, and I believe Hornady all have info for download.

  6. Thanks to all that commented.

    I'll probably mix and match my gear, such as a Lyman tumbler and Lee universal deprimer. As far as the press, well, I'll have to do some more research, but please continue to post your opinions.

  7. I love my RCBS Rockchucker single-stage. Still going after twenty years. Their Master reloader starter kit has a powder measure and beam scale that you'll need, too, and theirs is all top-notch stuff.

    I go Lee dies for cost, but that RCBS gear lasts forever and it's consistently reliable.

  8. I also prime almost exclusively with the Lee hand primer. Yes it will wear out after a while, but you'll get your money's worth out of it, esp. if you want to prime while watching TV somewhere. Faster than using the primer on the single-stage presses and you get more "feel".

  9. Yes!!! you could say that it is good stuff to learn on especially if you are reloading small batches of 100 or less rounds at a time.

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