When I work up a load, I've got to drive 10 miles each way to test it out. It normally took me several trips to get the seating depth correct. I would load 5 rounds each at .001" seating depth drive to the range, setup and test. When I found a depth that worked well, I would invariably have ammo that needed to be reseated or pulled to make the seating depth correct. It was a pain, because I'd shoot 5 that seemed correct and I'd have to go back home to duplicate them and validate the depth.
I was recently looking around on Midway's site and found the following hand press MidwayUSA - Lee Hand Press
I decided I'd order one, then I could reload my ammo .030" too long and just seat them at the range to whatever seating depth I wanted to test. I figured with the price of diesel ($4/gallon) it wouldn't take long to save the $19 for the little hand press.
Well, I decided to load up some ammo to test the 200 Accubonds in my 300WSM. I decided to give this little press a full fledged test and use it for the entire reloading process. I resized and seated 20 cartridges and then measured them on my Sinclair concentricity gauge. I was surprised to find 5 of the 20 rounds were absolutley perfect, the needle didn't even move on the concentricity gauge! The highest runout was just barely .002" and most of the rounds where around .001" !
I hurriedly measured 20 rounds I had previously made on my bench press and found only 3 'flatliners', but had several that had more than .004" runout and the rest were around .002".
It was clear that the little $19 handpress was making straighter ammo than my $200 RCBS press!
The brass for both batches came out of the same lot and had been fired the same number of times. I used the same dies (Redding type-S full length) and shellholder. I pushed the shoulder back the same amount on both tests; between .001" and .0015" (measured with a stoney point and my Starrett calipers). Bullets for both batches were out of the same box.
Just thought I would share this info with you all.
ps: the handpress is normally $21 but is currently on sale for $19