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Best Press For Precision Shooting? (Single Stage vs. Turret)

 
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  #1  
Old 11-17-2006, 08:59 AM
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Location: Texas
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Best Press For Precision Shooting? (Single Stage vs. Turret)

There's a lot of very experienced and knowledgeable people on this board and I am asking for your help with my selection of a reloaing press. I'm a USPSA shooter and I have done some reloading for .40 S&W on a Dillon 650 which turns out pistol ammo very quickly. However, my reloading experience is actually quite limited.

I'm starting on a precision rifle project in .338RUM and I will have to reload for this. I don't really feel like a progressive press is the way to go for serious precision/accuracy so I am looking to buy a single stage or possibly a turret press.

I like the Redding Model T-7 Turret Press because it looks like I could just set my dies once then leave them alone and switch back and forth as needed....but....is the T-7 suitable for precision work? The thing I DON'T like about single stage presses is the need to adjust dies every time they are changed out. Then again, there's the Hornady Lock and Load system which makes switching between dies go fast. But....is it reliable enough to load for true precision shooting? Here's one guy who thinks it is. What about an RCBS Rock Chucker Kit or one of those cheap/inexpensive Lee Single Stage kits ? What's the deal with the Forster presses and their snap-in system? It looks good but some reports make me think it is not the best choice for .338RUM.

I'm not one of those guys who looks at reloading as a hobby or pursuit in and of itself. I'm only doing it as a means to an end (i.e. feeding a hungry rifle for long range precision shooting...it's the shooting I care about) so I'm obviously looking for the easiest but surest way to produce high-quality ammo. I am going to need a proper powder measure (and trickler?) too since the only one I have is the one on my Dillon 650. I also need a new scale since the one I have now drifts +/- .2 grains too often to be trusted for loading precision rifle stuff.

I'd really like to hear some opinions on the best way to go here. (Keep in mind that I'm on a budget.) Reloading for long range precision shooting is a whole new world to me and I want to make sure I do this right. I need guidance from the gurus...

Thank you for any help you can offer.

Doug
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Old 11-17-2006, 10:08 AM
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Re: Best Press For Precision Shooting? (Single Stage vs. Turret)

Most responders will tell you to get the press they use?? (Duh!!) Few will tell you "Don't get the XXX, I have one and it sucks". It's just the way these boards work.

But keep in mind this.

Shell holders are NOT precision devices on purpose - the "standing hight" is standardized so head space will be the same with all dies, but the fit of the rim is deliberatly sloppy so the case will self-align to the die.

So all the hype about the press is nothing - Nada... the case will flop around until it finishes it's trip into the die, and then the precision of the die will determine the precision of the round. You can load great ammo on a dinky press, if the dies are great.

So whether you buy a RCBS Jr. or a 30 pound animal like the C-H Champion, it makes no difference in the accuracy.

The bigger presses will make the work easier because they have longer handles and more leverage.

The T-Presses are handy if you load only one cartridge, and only a few of them... but most loaders soon find that these are not as solid for "big" or magnum cases.

The Bonanza is nice, but impossible to use most bullet pullers with.

The RCBS Ruckchucker is an OK middle sized press, but now that they are made in China, they are off of my personal list.

The Redding large "O" frame is very good.
The C-H Champion is the animal of the bunch at 30 pounds - and it's not cast aluminum, it's solid iron.

Redding and Forster match dies are the best available.

RCBS dies are OK.

Hornady dies are much better than they should be for the price, and are better than RCBS.

The US Palma team loads their 1000 yd ammo on a Dillon 550, so don't let anyone tell you that progressives can't load "serious" ammo.

And I won't tell you which press I use. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img] [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]
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Old 11-17-2006, 11:04 AM
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Location: Northamptonshire England
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Re: Best Press For Precision Shooting? (Single Stage vs. Turret)

Hi Doug,
Your precision rifle will tell us what type of handloading will best suit your needs.
Are you having a 338 RUM built up by a smith or are you buying an out of the box rifle?
I think it would be unfair to recommend a level of handloading and thus what type of press to use untill we know what type of rifle you have.

Ordinary ammunition, loaded with ordinary dies, on an ordinary press would not fully utilize the accuracy potential of a custom rifle.
Like wise, benchrest quality ammunition loaded on benchrest standard equipment, will be wasted on a factory rifle.
Having said that i load all my ammo to benchrest standards whether its one of my custom rifles or one of my factory rifles.

Ian
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Old 11-17-2006, 11:16 AM
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Re: Best Press For Precision Shooting? (Single Stage vs. Turret)

Good points all around. The rifle is going to be built by a gunsmith who specializes in custom tactical, hunting, and benchrest rifles. I'm supplying the parts (Rem 700 action, Krieger barrel, Tubb recoil lug, etc.) and Speedy Gonzalez at TG&Y rifles in Roanoke, Texas, will be putting it all together for me.

Speedy and I talked quite a while about 338 Lapua vs. 338RUM and the best build for the money on a Remingtn 700 based, precision long range hunting rig. Based on Speedy's reputation and the rifles I have seen from him in the past, I'm going to need to cautiously reload to live up to my rifle's standards.

Thanks for the inquiry and the good points.

Doug
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  #5  
Old 11-17-2006, 02:26 PM
 
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Re: Best Press For Precision Shooting? (Single Stage vs. Turret)

Hi,
I agree with all the above.
I really believe the press isn't as important as the dies. They MUST be able to assemble rounds with less than .002 of bullet runout.
But, also understand it is your responsibility to set it up correctly, and that may take you some time.
What did Speedy recommend?
Good luck to you.
C'ya, John.
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  #6  
Old 11-17-2006, 08:02 PM
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Re: Best Press For Precision Shooting? (Single Stage vs. Turret)

[ QUOTE ]
The RCBS Ruckchucker is an OK middle sized press, but now that they are made in China, they are off of my personal list.

[/ QUOTE ]Hmmm. But using electro-mechanical systems whose parts, subassemblies and complete units comprising systems including the hardware and software that connects them so they'll get your feelings posted on this web site that are made in all corners of this globe is OK. Hmmm.
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  #7  
Old 11-17-2006, 08:11 PM
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Join Date: May 2001
Posts: 920
Re: Best Press For Precision Shooting? (Single Stage vs. Turret)

[ QUOTE ]
[ QUOTE ]
The RCBS Ruckchucker is an OK middle sized press, but now that they are made in China, they are off of my personal list.

[/ QUOTE ]Hmmm. But using electro-mechanical systems whose parts, subassemblies and complete units comprising systems including the hardware and software that connects them so they'll get your feelings posted on this web site that are made in all corners of this globe is OK. Hmmm.

[/ QUOTE ]

No... but with computers I have no choice - with loading equipment, I do!

Hmmm yo' self!
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