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Unread 05-21-2013, 08:59 AM   #16
Indy
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I use lee dies for about 75% of my calibers, load 20 or so. They make good dies.

I don't recommend a turret or anything other than a single stage press for new loaders. Just making safe ammo can be hard enough if you have distractions (kids/dogs/etc), its a lot easier to mess up the more you have going on. 1 piece that had a low/no powder charge means at best unloading every round loaded to check. At worst you don't pay attention and get a barrel obstruction.

You don't need flash hole cleaners, trimmers, headspace guages, powder trickler etc. You don't even need a scale. Billions of rounds have been loaded with nothing more than dippers, but I would still use a scale.

If you get to the point you're fine tuning a load, digital scales and all kinds of doo-dads can be added. But for ammo that's just as good as most shelf ammo they're not needed.

You can use a lube pad and roll each case but I like the baggie method better.

So for needs, press, dies, dipper/scale, case lube, components.

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Unread 05-21-2013, 05:37 PM   #17
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Unless you are loading new brass each time you better make damn sure the cases are sized properly. Headspace gauge ensures your dies are setup properly and if you need to trim the necks. Also I want to make damn sure I am getting a consistent powder load +/-.1g. You can wing it if you want, but lots of things can go wrong if your cases and powder measures aren't right.
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Unread 05-21-2013, 07:45 PM   #18
tjcj
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Originally Posted by Roobicon View Post
Unless you are loading new brass each time you better make damn sure the cases are sized properly. Headspace gauge ensures your dies are setup properly and if you need to trim the necks. Also I want to make damn sure I am getting a consistent powder load +/-.1g. You can wing it if you want, but lots of things can go wrong if your cases and powder measures aren't right.
I was planning on getting a case trimmer, does the headspace gauge come with the dies or is that a seperate item? How do you measure so close on the powder load do you use a powder trickler? Pretty sure I'm just going to go with the single stage press instead of the turret style.

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Unread 05-21-2013, 07:55 PM   #19
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I use a Lyman headspace gauge and is sold separately for around $20. Check out YouTube videos on headspace gauges and you will see how easy they are to use. My RCBS powder measure allows me to get pretty consistent loads but the trickler allows me to get very accurate measures by dropping one or two "grains " of powder at a time. The other option is to spend a couple hundred bucks and buy an electronic scale if you want consistently accurate measures.
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Unread 05-22-2013, 07:48 AM   #20
Indy
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You want to size new brass before you load it, new doesnt mean correct plus the case mouths can get dinged up in the bag. Its worth the extra second. Assuming you get lee dies most will come with a powder dipper, yellow hammer shaped spoon. It or anymother spoon-shaped item is all you need to "trickle" without spending money.

Avoid imo the lee scale though, it will do the job but not as well as a regular magnetic swing style scale. At least the ones we tested were not as accurate as the others we tested.

I do like the lee perfect powder measure though, gotten a few billion rounds of good performance out of it with all powder types. Cheap and fast, worth having on the bench.
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Unread 05-23-2013, 11:20 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tjcj View Post
I was planning on getting a case trimmer, does the headspace gauge come with the dies or is that a seperate item? How do you measure so close on the powder load do you use a powder trickler? Pretty sure I'm just going to go with the single stage press instead of the turret style.

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Why did you change your mind and want to go with a single stage press?
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Unread 05-23-2013, 05:58 PM   #22
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A guy I was talking to said I'd be better off with a single stage said less to worry about ,meaning I would only be doing one process at a time . He also said that with a single stage theres less moving parts to break. Any truth to that? Also Cabelas has them on sale till Saturday LOL .

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Unread 05-23-2013, 06:53 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by tjcj View Post
A guy I was talking to said I'd be better off with a single stage said less to worry about ,meaning I would only be doing one process at a time . He also said that with a single stage theres less moving parts to break. Any truth to that? Also Cabelas has them on sale till Saturday LOL .

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Not in my opinion. There is really nothing to break, and you would have to work very hard to do so. Then again I have only been reloading for 35 years, and hundreds of thousands of rounds. Still have and use the same setup that I bought in 1977. A turret press is the same as a single stage. The only difference is a single stage you can only do one stage at a time before you have to remove the die and readjust the next die for the following step. A turret press has 6 spots for a die, once you adjust the die to your specific setting then you do not need to remove it to proceed to the next step, you simply turn the turret to access the next die to perform the next step. Save time in adjusting dies. Either way is good. Just with the turret setup you can leave all the dies on the press adjusted and ready to go the next time you need them. Most rifle dies are 2 stages, so you could set up 3 calibers and leave them be. Just turn the turret to access the die you need.
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Unread 05-23-2013, 07:12 PM   #24
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Hmm never thought about the set up every time.

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Unread 05-23-2013, 07:24 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by tjcj View Post
Hmm never thought about the set up every time.

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That's the beauty of turret presses. Set it up and forget it.
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Unread 05-24-2013, 12:21 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by tjcj View Post
Hmm never thought about the set up every time.

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That does take about 3 seconds per die, so figure an extra 20 or so seconds every billion rounds. You don't change dies every round, you set your sizing/decapper and run all the brass, then move to the next die and run all your brass etc. When I load on a single stage I usually do 1 step per session, so size all my brass then a day or whenever I have free time swap dies and do the next stage. Although I did 20 from start to finish last night, needed some completed rounds to function test a new gun this weekend.

My turret is a progressive/auto rotating so it spins every time you drop the handle. Or raise it, don't remember which. It has 4 or 5 die stations but removeable turret heads. So you set the dies in the head and then swap the entire head over for a caliber change. So again set and forget. It's faster for pistol calibers but the powder dispenser doesn't do as well with small charges so you have to pay attention to what it's doing at that stage. It's a lee turret, far from the best, generally works, not my favorite.

I still use my single stage rcbs for most rifle loads. I'm dealing with a bigger bang and more precise measurements than a bulk run of 9mm.

The neat thing about reloading, you don't have to stick with 1 process. My bench had 3 presses on it at one time, now generally 2 and always 1. Different tools for different jobs. Some day I'll go to a true progressive dillon. maybe.
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Unread 05-24-2013, 12:27 PM   #27
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You do not need small base dies for a 223. Just know what chamber you have. 223 Remington or 5.56NATO. Do not use NATO load data in a 223. Take your time and blast away.
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Unread 06-23-2013, 03:21 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by CoastieShep View Post
As bruteboy said, if only one rifle per caliber (unless you want to keep them separate) just neck size. The brass will last much longer, but it will also be fire formed for that specific rifle, so it won't fit quite rite in a different rifle.
Also, don't forget a good manual, and one of these are also really nice for a quick check. http://www.amazon.com/Lyman-7832215-...e+length+gauge
I'll second the manual. I'm not sure what comes in that RCBS kit but good manual (Speer is my favorite) will not only provide the needed load data but also additional information related to the process. Welcome to Reloading !
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