posted ago by WhiteTrashJesus ago by WhiteTrashJesus +13 / -0

-Is it worthwhile to get into it at this time? I have heard it is difficult to get primers and other components. I have no problem eating the capital investment of a press and other equipment, but if it can help me shoot more .30 carbine, .30-06 and .223 with less cost per round (for consumables) it would be great

-Are there any presses that are good for a beginner and also can be upgraded to be totally automatic down the line? I am a technical person so I would be really interested in automating the process more as I go, but I need to start with something that can be used for that even if I need to spend more. I know a dillon 1050 is a good option but maybe a smaller dillon or another brand progressive would be better for a noob Thank you

Comments (11)
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PPGfrog 4 points ago +4 / -0

In the past cost was very similar to off the shelf ammo. Your loads would be a better quality and customized to whatever you want.

Its a repetitious, time consuming, pain in the ass. But there is a zen to it. To my knowledge there is no fully automatic system. Progressives are close to automatic. And there is some danger involved not just in the volatile material you are handling, which is pretty safe, primers being the sketchiest. If you mess up a powder charge, say double load it, It could kill you. There are systems for checking the charge as one of the progressive stages, A quick visual check works also. Starting with 38s to fire through a 357 is a good way to learn. Double loading a 38 isnt a big deal in that config.

There is value in grabbing a tub of powder or a box of primers when you see them vs hoping to catch a box of ammo. But saving money even not including the equipment cost and labor wont be much of a thing if at all.

Lee is the cheapest and some of it is pretty hokey. But it does a good job and their dies are considered the best. Dillon is probably the most expensive and they make fantastic equipment. I believe starting with a simple single stage press and learning each step individually is the way to go. And you can do that with a progressive machine, just set up one station.

So if you wanna drop the cheddar go with a Dillon box set something. I am not familiar with their product line. Learn on one stage with 38 through your 357. If you dont have a 357...what the hell man? Get one.

WhiteTrashJesus [S] 2 points ago +2 / -0

I have a .357 rifle. Thanks for the advice

PPGfrog 3 points ago +3 / -0

Welcome, Hopefully its help spark some convo. The rifle a lever action? So cool.

WhiteTrashJesus [S] 2 points ago +2 / -0

Yes it is a winchester 92 clone with the long octagon barrel. Usually just plink with .38 but i guess hot loads would be a lot more fun

overrun 4 points ago +4 / -0

Getting back into reloading after 10 year hiatus. Then my ammo cost was half of factory loads. It took awhile to get all the components together and rough calc says I'll save about 25% now. Primers have quadrupled in price, powder doubled in some cases. And you have to be quick on the order button when what you want shows up.

Why reload? Ammo shortages seem to have driven manufacturers to concentrate on popular loads only. If you shoot something other than .223, 9mm, .40, or .45, there is very little on the shelves. I've not seen .357 in ove a year and then it was $30 for 25 rounds (self defense load). Zero .357 range blaster or general purpose 125 JHP. .30 Carbine I've not seen in 2 years and at $1/round, .30-06 is mostly 180 gr. hunting loads (won't function in my Garand). So for these cartridges reloading is my best option.

So, pick what round you want to reload and start buying components as they come into stock. This could take awhile but eventually everything you need will appear. I like dealing with Midway. Fast shipping and no BS. Bass Pro can surprise too. Several times I've gone in and found the primers and powder I need. For gear, only buy used. There is a lot out there from people that got in and got out. I like RCBS but also buy Lee. Lee is lighter duty for their presses but cheap. RCBS presses will be dug up out of the ground 1000 years from now still usable.

WhiteTrashJesus [S] 2 points ago +2 / -0


Panopticon 4 points ago +4 / -0

There are some fully automatic press systems but like another poster said about turret systems... I don't trust them. I use a single stage where I double check each round on a scale.

Reloading usually costs a bit less but you end up shooting more.. So it's usually a wash.

overrun 2 points ago +2 / -0

This is the way.

Thebrunch 2 points ago +2 / -0

Relodiding does save money but not really at the same time. The running joke in the community is that reloading is the most expensive way to save money invented. You can reload your own ammo for half the cost of shelf ammo even with the still inflated primer and bullet prices. Primers are up 300% and bullets about 100%. After starting to reload you will see all the ammo on the shelf as trash and useful only for the brass, even the match ammo.

As far as picking up the hobby, components are starting to hit the shelves again. I would recommend starting with a single stage press. The RCBS rockchucker is highly rated in the community, I would not recommend starting on progressive press till you get experienced. Just be aware it takes time, I'm talking a lot of time. It will be about 15 min start to finish for each round of actual work which involves measuring, sizing, trimming, pressing primer, measuring powder charge, seating, and crimping. You will want all the reloading manuals you can get as well. The Lee manual has a section that does a good job of explaining the process for beginners as well as the hornady.

All1000wombats 2 points ago +2 / -0

I'm a novice reloader, so take my advice with a grain of salt.

Basically you can still do it and save money per round. The best way to do this however is to buy large amounts of primers, powder, bullets, brass etc. The smaller the quantity that you buy the less (in general) that you're saving per round. Also if you can use range brass instead of having to buy new brass that will obviously be one of the biggest ways (and simplest, since the vast majority of reloaders use range brass) to save money.

Bear in mind that nobody really "saves" money reloading. At the end of the day you'll spend less per shot fired, but you'll actually spend more money overall because you'll get caught up in it and make more ammo which equals more money spent.

All in all, reloading is a lot of fun. Once you've got the basics down and understand what you're doing, it becomes a fun process that you can kill some time with in the evenings. I definitely recommend it.

Nomoralcompass89 1 point ago +1 / -0

Furthermore it can be therapeutic. So it saves money instead of giving it to a shrink.