newbie help

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by gary alford, Dec 31, 2010.

  1. gary alford

    gary alford Member

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    i am looking to get into reloading, i've never done it, never been around it and have no idea where to start.

    what components do i need to buy? what brands are best/most reliable? how much should i expect to spend to get set up initially, not counting powder, brass, primers and bullets?

    i shoot a 7mm rem mag and a 25-06 if that matters

    thanks in advance,

    ga
     
  2. SBruce

    SBruce Well-Known Member

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    Reloading is not hard, I've been loading my own rifle ammo since I was 12 years old.

    That being said; even though not hard, it requires concentration and attention to detail. Certain practices and "rules" if you will, will keep you and your family and your firearms safe.

    1st, pickup a couple of reloading manuals, the more info you can gather the better off you'll be, I promise. There are also some DVD's and videos out on reloading that can be very helpful.

    There are alot of questions in your post, and you could very likely get 100's of opinions on what components are "best". I am partial to Hogdens powder, mainly because I've got an old reload manual that was personally autographed by the Hogdens guys........It's all I've ever used and am completely satisfied with it.

    Since you mention being totally new to this, for now; I'd recomend a basic starters reloading kit. RCBS has been a big name in reloading for many many years and their stuff is good quaility. At minimum; You'll need a press with priming arm/tube or a hand primer, dies and shell holders, powder scale, calipers, loading block, case lube, and powder funnel.

    From there; you can add all sorts of things to your reloading inventory. I've got alot of $$$'s tied up in precision handloading equipment. Granted, It's stuff I've accumulated over nearly 30 years, but alot of money nonetheless. I don't "reload" however, I "handload" and making the most precise ammo I can is my goal. I don't do it to save money.

    A powder thrower/measure is really nice and highly recommended, but not absolutely necessary if you just want to save money on ammo. A case trimmer and chamfer/deburr tool is also highly recommended, but again not absolutely necessary to start with, you can add one later. Case neck brushes, and primer pocket brushes are fairly cheap and are worth adding too if you wish.

    Best of luck to you.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2010

  3. CRNA

    CRNA Well-Known Member

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    I have reloaded my own ammo in the past using my grandfather's equipment. Sadly, my grandfather, one of my best friends, passed away at the age of 84 in April. Now I'm sure that I could use his equipment. I am sure that he would have wanted it that way, but there's just too much emotion in it for me. Having said that, I just ordered my own reloading equipment. Placed the order last night actually. I bought a kit which contained the press, powder thrower, case trimmer, powder scales, loading block, de-burring/chamfering tool, lube pad, and a reloading manual. To that I added a case tumbler, a powder trickler, shell holder, and dies. (I also had a few other goodies in the order), but the reloading equipment portion of the order was in the ballpark of $450.
    If you have never watched anyone reload, I would highly recommend finding someone who reloads and just watch the process. As the previous poster noted, it isn't hard, but I think it would be very challenging to do it right by just reading the reloading manual. Don't get me wrong. You need to read the manuals, but I just think it would make it all "come together" if you saw someone in action doing it.
    You will achieve a much greater consistency in ammo with hand-loading than you will with factory ammo. Not to mention you will be able to have "match grade" ammo at the "shoot 'em up" ammo cost. I made a spreadsheet to figure out roughly the cost of my ammo per round, and if I shoot much the equipment will basically pay for itself. This is even amplified if you consider the cost of premium factory ammo. Hope this helps.
     
  4. SBruce

    SBruce Well-Known Member

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    For the 25-06, I like Winchester brass, CCI primers, and H 4831SC, H 4350 is good too.......one or the other should work for just about any bullet weight the 25-06 is capable of shooting. In my experiece, rifles are more particular about the bullet being shot than they are the powder being used (when it comes to group size anyway).
     
  5. gary alford

    gary alford Member

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    SBruce, thanks so much for the response, it gives me a great place to start from

    CRNA, sorry to hear about your grandpa, the men from his generation will never be duplicated, love those guys...thank you too for taking time to respond

    i have reloaded shotgun shells since i was 5 or 6, i'm assuming the basic process is similar, though more detail oriented

    any suggestions on reload manuals and/or 'how to' books/dvds?

    i can google, but the choices are so endless i'm coming to the experienced guys to avoid as much misinformation as i can

    thank y'all

    ga
     
  6. CRNA

    CRNA Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the condolences. I currently have a Sierra reloading manual that is very easy to understand and comprehensive.
     
  7. SBruce

    SBruce Well-Known Member

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    You're welcome,

    I've never loaded shotshells, so I can't compare. I've only loaded for precision shooting of rifles.

    My Dad showed me how to reload, and 6 years later my Great Uncle showed me how to load for precision shooting/benchrest competition.

    Since then I've modified/added some of my own techniques for long range varmints and coyotes.

    I've got tons of books and some dvd's that I've accumulated over the years, but I am unsure which books to recommend at the moment (I am not near them currently) I will look through them and find the ones with the most illustrations and most info on "how to".

    The DVD's I've got are about using advanced techniques for long range competition, nothing that would help the beginner really, because they totally skip over the basics. But here's a video that I've heard many good reviews about..............

    https://www.varminthunter.org/shop/profile.asp?productID=633&cID=14

    Reloading I
    Downrange Video Productions - The Best Reloading Videos Ever Produced
    featuring Jim Carmichel, John Larroquette and Ned Kalbfleish


    I'll get back with you on the books in a couple of days.........if for some reason I forget and you haven't heard back from me within a week or so, send me a PM as a reminder.
     
  8. gary alford

    gary alford Member

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    will do thanks again, and keep the info coming, my wife is not happy i found this site...truly a whole new level of expertise here...eye opening exposure for me...i've got 6+ yrs of forum reading to catch up on
     
  9. sp6x6

    sp6x6 Well-Known Member

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    As SBruce said, I started at same age, and my problem is I have many old manuals. I like the new yearly printed mag. style Hodgon manuals,more upto date caibers, powder,etc. Plus only about $8. But the big manuals are fun,and I USUALLY have one in camper for hunting reading, just fuels the fire for more calibers to wish for
     
  10. CogburnR

    CogburnR Well-Known Member

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    https://factorysales.com/html/xcart/catalog/anivers.html

    That is the basic kit you need to start and a couple dies which they sell also.

    .Also the 90700 anniversary pack https://factorysales.com/html/xcart/40-ANNIVERSARY-PKG.html includes the book and a small press which is handy for lots of things. About 200$ shipped for everything. Thats 2 presses with everything you need and dies and a manual. Around 150$ shipped without the second press and manual.

    Some brass,powder,bullets, and primers and you can reload.

    People like RCBS but the Lyman press is now better and not made in china.

    Lyman Products Your Primary Source for Reloading Equipment
     
  11. diriel

    diriel Well-Known Member

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    +1 to what Cog said.

    Over the years I have spent quite a lot on different reloading equipment. I Like my RCBS Rock Crusher, but I also like my Lee Turret press very well. I also have a field Hand Press kit that I try to keep with my when I go out shooting. The lee kit may not be "The BEST", but it certainly gets my vote for a relatively inexpensive kit that will for certain Get IT Done! The sky is the limit if you really want to get enthused, but at the same time you really do not HAVE to go that expensive to make real good shooting ammo. I have recently been considering the Forester Co-Ax press. Not that I need another press! hahaha...see what I mean?

    Good shooting,
    Gary
     
  12. gary alford

    gary alford Member

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    thanks so much fellas, i look forward to loading my first rounds and more to firing them....i can guarantee more questions to come, trying to read as much as possible to keep them to a minimum

    loving this site
     
  13. SBruce

    SBruce Well-Known Member

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    Gary,

    The Lyman manuals have alot of illustrations (mostly black and white) and step by step instructions.

    The Sierra manuals have alot of great info too, more advanced and in-depth.

    The Hornady manuals have some great color illustrations of things that aren't covered in the Lyman books.
     
  14. diriel

    diriel Well-Known Member

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    The Lee reloading manual is also pretty good. Has A LOT of info in it. It and the Lyman are right up at the top of my go-to list. I like the Hodgdon paper manual pretty good too, updated yearly so its a nice refrence.

    Gary