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Reloading Berger Bullets


Looking to Start Reloading

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Old 11-23-2013, 10:29 AM
Gold Member
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Jax Fl.
Posts: 503
Re: Looking to Start Reloading

I can't see ever buying another press in my lifetime now that I'm running a co-ax but if RCBS has gone to China they are off my list as companies to buy from. Does anyone know for sure if they have sent press production to China ? I started with an old Rockcucker I got second hand and it worked well enough. It would be really sad if they are outsourcing.
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Old 11-24-2013, 09:11 AM
Silver Member
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 333
Re: Looking to Start Reloading

The RCBS China story has been bubbling around for over a year. Don't know the truth but what has been reported is they were getting press castings from China but had quality issues and had to abandon the venture. Customer feeback was not good and the consumer felt betrayed for having gone to China. Just the idea they went to China in the first place takes them off my list for new equipment purchases. Shame too because they had such a solid reputation.

I share Daveinjax opinion about Hornady equipment. I do not put them in the same good category as others. Their free bullet offer entices lots of folks to buy Hornady equipment but after awhile they upgrade. I fell into that trap with some of their dies. I've purged my bench of all but one set of Hornady dies and as soon as I see a deal on that one it will be replaced too.

I don't like all of Lee's equipment but the stuff I have I really like a lot. That includes their Classic Cast single stage and Classic Cast turrets presses, ball handle case length gages, 3-jaw chuck, dipper cups and pistol dies and Lee's funnel that fits the powder through expander die. I also have a couple of the Lee bullet molds and their bottom pour Pro 20 lead pot. All excellent equipment.

For rifle dies I prefer Forster and Redding and the Lee Collet Neck Die.

Hand tools for case prep are real important so get what you like. EJS makes some good stuff. I try and get oversized hand tools like the Lyman 50 BMG deburring tool (works on all cases) so my fat hands don't cramp grabbing those tiny tools for extended periiods of time.
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Old 11-24-2013, 10:02 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Washington State
Posts: 479
Re: Looking to Start Reloading


Old time reloaders clearly have their favorites. I bought a Lyman 9mm Luger TC set last year and the sizer would not reduce the cases enough to retain the bullets, you could seat them with finger pressure. Lyman offered to replace the die at no cost but I bought an RCBS set instead. The Lyman sizer works as a final sizing die. My 9mm sets are used as follows: RCBS sizer, Lyman "M" neck expander, Lyman seater, RCBS seater without seating stem set as tapered crimp only, faulty Lyman sizer as final sizing die. The beauty of this set up is I don't change any settings on the dies except seating depth and nose punch shape, just screw the right die into the press and go. I would've done it this way to start but the faulty die just pushed it ahead. I am thrilled with the outcome!

My first die set bought way back in 1971 was a Lyman TC 357Mag. Literally 100k (not a typo) rounds with that set and they are flawless. So do I change because Lyman screwed up the 9mm? No because Manufactures screw up and the good ones fix it.

I have Lee die sets in combination with other manufactures and most of their stuff is as good or better, they just don't do ANY spit and polish. Lee's collet neck sizer is the best neck sizer period! Same with their factory crimp dies.

Just bought my first Hornaday die set in 375 Ruger and the quality is commendable. they use the same style of sliding collar seating die that the best of them do. Would I buy another set? You bet! I would like one of their seaters for every rifle caliber I own.

I suppose my ideal set would look like this: 1) universal decapper, 2) RCBS full length small base sizer (with NO neck expander) followed by using the Lee collet neck sizer exclusively after fire - forming in rifle calibers or Redding Dual - Ring carbide in pistol calibers, 3) Lyman "M" neck expander in all calibers, 4) Redding or Hornaday sliding collar bullet seater, 5) Lee Factory Crimp die as needed.

Does that seem strange? It's not. Those are the best attributes I have found in those dies. But it is minutia in the long run. Buy a good set of dies and spend as much as you need for the quality level you want. You can add capability over time.

Just to throw another rock; there is a big difference in powder measures. Belding & Mull is the best with Redding a good second.

Just sayin'
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Old 05-04-2014, 12:09 AM
Junior Member
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Jamestown, ND
Posts: 6
Re: Looking to Start Reloading

get some forster dies and send em in for "cleaning up". if your not measuring the fine levels. that said we can all reload to factory specs.
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Old 05-04-2014, 01:37 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio
Posts: 2,058
Re: Looking to Start Reloading

Does it really matter if RCBS is / was having presses made in Chine? If it does actually matter...where and why?

I want a high quality product at what might b the lowest possible cost. I dont care if they have Bolivian "hookers" making them. I dont want to know the best quality reloader I can buy in the USA has LEE stamped all over it. Ive seen them...used them...and dont care for them. They are low cost and CHEAP to boot.

Some of you guys need to get off that old saw and smarten up a LOT. Its gets might old after awhile as I read you guys bitching about Japan this and that and then leave the gunstore and drive away in your Toyota.
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Old 05-04-2014, 06:39 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Northern California
Posts: 14
Re: Looking to Start Reloading

I'm just getting into it as well, and I picked up the Lyman kit. I added a trimmer, balanced scale, trickler and the rest was included (I didn't want the digital scale that came with it, maybe I'll sell it for $90 on ebay).
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Old 05-05-2014, 06:40 AM
Silver Member
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: New germany, NS
Posts: 422
Re: Looking to Start Reloading

Originally Posted by Revraz View Post
I'm just getting into it as well, and I picked up the Lyman kit. I added a trimmer, balanced scale, trickler and the rest was included (I didn't want the digital scale that came with it, maybe I'll sell it for $90 on ebay).
you have yourself a good kit there. But, keep the digital scale. 2 scales are better than 1
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