Perfect Union banner
1 - 11 of 11 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
166 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
ok i would like to start trying handloading when i get my mini 14/30 (havent decided). ive tried reloading once at a boy scout camp, and i reloaded 5 shotgun shells, but all i did was pull the handle. my uncle has an old reloading press that needs a home, and he asked if i wanted it. i agreed,and when i fly out there for christmas, i'm going to pick it up. so besides a press, empty shell casings, powder, and primers, what do you need to reload rifle bullets?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
287 Posts
natedog, the best thing to start with would be a good reloading manual read it and it will tell you just as much as anyone can. But to start with you will need at least a set of dies,powder measure,casetrimmer,priming tool if your press doesnt have one,and last but not least a bullet puller, if you happen to screw up and load a case with no powder or seat the bullet wrong. Been there done that more times than I will admit! Good luck;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
535 Posts
You will need a reloading manual, set of dies, case lube (either pad or spray), powder scale or measure (if you have the cash get a scale), a neck brush and handle, a deburring tool, a case length trimmer. Nice to haves include hand priming tool, powder trickler, case tumbler, a neck sizing die, neck turner, primer pocket tool, flashhole tool.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,514 Posts
The scale is MIGHTY important!! After all, how do you know what charges you are throwing with that measure? And you want to QC yourself, checking every X amount of rounds after throwing your powder charge. Too much, or too little powder, is EXTREMELY dangerous-i.e. squib (which you may or may not catch at the time of firing, especially rapid-fire),excessive presure, or at worst, firearm/bodily damage.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
567 Posts
natedog---It's been years since I bought a manual but Hornady used to put out a very good one. Most anybody can prime a hull & dump some powder in it & shove a bullet in. That's the easy part. The real thing to handloading your own ammo is to understand exactly what is going on inside your weapon & how all the little pieces come together. Buy a good manual & read it till your eyes water. Then read it a couple more times. The manual will explain excatly what it is you're trying to do & tell you how to accomplish that. Above all it'll teach you the safety thats involved in loading your own ammo. It's really a great feeling when you work up a good load & once you do you'll be hooked into "Rollin Your Own".

Good luck
Bushwack
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
64 Posts
natedog, if you want to get a kit that has everything you need to start for a beginner. Try Lee's Anniversary reloading kit. I got mine for about $70 from Cabelas. It has most of the stuff you will need minus powder, primers, casings, dies and bullets etc. I've reloaded over a thousand rounds with mine already(and haven't had a single mis-fire or problem). Just read the instructions real good, take your time when you reload and you won't have any problems.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
541 Posts
If you can't get a scale right away,Lee Percision sells a nice powder scoop set with a premeasured slide rule.It will get you started and is cheap.Lee Percision usually has the best deals for the money. WWW.LEEPRECISION.COM
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,786 Posts
Nate, the best advice I can give you (or any one that wants to get into reloading) is get Lyman's 47th Reloading Handbook. It is Extremely Important to completely understand what you are doing! The first 22 chapters in this manual is Step by Step, explains everything in detail. All the equipment, and how to use it, the Cases, bullets, powders, and primers. How to identify dangerous high pressure signs, common mistakes, and much more. It has pictures, and charts. It covers Most all Rifle, and Pistols. The rest of the manual is the reloading data you need to reload with. I have most all the reloading manuals. This is the last one I got, It should have been the first. The other manuals only have a few pages of info before they get to the data, thats ok if your experienced. I've been reloading about 20 years, and I learned quite a lot from this manual.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
102 Posts
Everyone here has already given good advice, to which I don't have much more to add. But I was a beginner at reloading 3 years ago, and I can tell you how I got started, which may be helpful to you.

Like you, I inherited a reloading press, in my case from my father-in-law. I first got a powder scale and a set of .303 Lee dies for my Enfields, then a reloading table showing the appropriate powder charges for the various bullet weights. The Hodgden reloading table is online for downloading in PDF format, and is an invaluable resource if you're using Hodgden powder (I use BLC-2). Finally, I bought a Lee primer loader. Interchangeable case holders are available for these, which handle many different case sizes. I started with GCI primers and haven't found any reason to change since.

After my first stuck case (getting a jammed case out of a die is a very educational experience), I bought my first bottle of case lube. Let my newbie experience warn you: don't try putting brass in a die without case lube.

A primer-pocket brush is advisable. This is a steel brush for cleaning the burned crud out of your primer pockets before re-priming. I got mine from RCBS, but there are others.

I went a long time without using a case trimmer, and had no problems. But once I got one, I started using it all the time. Cabela's has one for about $10. Note that they're caliber-specific.

I now reload for .303, .308, .223 and 7.62x39, and can offer some other experiences:

1: If you're going to buy military-surplus brass (I do when I can find it at gun shows), you'll want a crimp-removal tool. Military primers are usually crimped in place, and the ridge left around the primer hole can make it hard to insert new primers. The tool is just a little cutter that reams the crimped ridge away.

2: There are many types of bullets from several different manufacturers. I use Hornady, and I'm happy with them, but you may want to experiment. I generally buy mine from Cabela's because my nearest gun shop is 50 miles away.

3: .223 is a particularly good caiber to reload for, since there is always so much .223 brass laying around for the taking at my range. For some reason, people seem to throw away more .223 than any other caliber. My brass box is overflowing just from the stuff I've picked up at the range.

4: A case tumbler is a good investment. Sure, you can clean your brass with Scotchbrite or steel wool by hand, but this gets old very fast.

5: An adjustable powder dispenser is an excellent time saver. But I still weigh each charge before putting it into the case, since the dispensers can drift slightly from time to time. Even so, it saves a lot of time. Measuring the powder is easily the most time-consuming of the reloading steps, and probably the single most important.

6: I didn't have a how-to reloading manual when I started reloading, I just began doing what looked logical. It worked, but there were a lot of pitfalls (like lubing your cases before putting them through the die) that I could have avoided if I'd read a good manual beforehand.

Hope this helps.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
110 Posts
Originally posted by natedog375
ok i would like to start trying handloading when i get my mini 14/30 (havent decided). ive tried reloading once at a boy scout camp, and i reloaded 5 shotgun shells, but all i did was pull the handle. my uncle has an old reloading press that needs a home, and he asked if i wanted it. i agreed,and when i fly out there for christmas, i'm going to pick it up. so besides a press, empty shell casings, powder, and primers, what do you need to reload rifle bullets?
From a monetary standpoint, I find I can purchase American Eagle factory .223 ammo from Natchez cheaper than I can reload it for. However, I do reload practice rounds for the Remington 7600 30-06 (can't buy ammo cheaper than I can reload it for).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,514 Posts
If you shoot enough, your reloading equipment will pay for itself several times over. When it comes down to the cheap cost of primers, bullets, powder, corn media as it wears out, the only real cost is my time. I haven't found loaded ammo cheaper than I reload it for.
And reloading can be relaxing, and rewarding.
 
1 - 11 of 11 Posts
Top