Originally Posted by emmagator
just looking for a list of the very minimal equipment needed to get started loading a quality long range hunting round. Very strapped for cash so just looking for the essentials. Thanks
Precision is required for a "quality long range round".
With all respect to Scott, I'm not a believer in buying a reloading kit if your goal is precision loading and precision shooting. It's OK for hobby reloading if your goal is to produce factory level quality, but if you're looking for precision, you need precision tools. As Scott has mentioned, he has replaced all of those components, so the best thing to do from the start, is to purchase every piece according to the needed function. Every measured charge must be exact and consistent. Brass must be prepped to be uniform and concentric, especially necks. Bullets must also be seated concentric with consistent neck tension.
Most reloading equipment is of good quality. There's not a lot of difference in quality of presses and balance beam scales. Probably the most important components are the dies, especially the seating die. You want good quality sizing dies to get consistent and concentric brass and a good quality seating die to seat bullets concentrically.
Expander type sizing dies are the most simple and require less prep than bushing dies, but bushing dies allow you to accurately adjust neck tension and cause a lot less work hardening of the brass. But if you use bushing dies you should turn your necks to get consistent neck tension. If you use an expander sizing die, place a rubber "O" ring just above the expander ball to help facilitate a concentrically sized neck.
Get a competition bullet seater,... 'nuff said.
Shop around for the other stuff here and on Ebay or Cabella's or Midway, etc,. last time I checked Cabella's has a good set of "Cabella's dial calipers" for a good price.
Scott also made a good list of other components to get.
Read up on this site because it is rich with very valuable info. Do a lot of research before you start buying.