Want to get into reloading -- kit recommendations?

Brydawg512

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Nov 16, 2018
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Hello all,

Looking to get into reloading, specifically for a 300 WM (probably a 6.5 CM down the road as well). I am thinking a single stage press will be great for me to learn on, however, open to recommendations.

I had been eyeing the RCBS Rock Chucker Supreme Kit, however, everywhere seems to be sold out. I'd like to stay around the same price point ($300-400).

Any press kit recommendations?

Thanks in advance.
 

shooter7

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Nov 29, 2011
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Sun Valley, ID
Natchez Shooters Supply has the RCBS Rebel Master Kit in stock and on sale for $394 right now. In these weird and scarce times you may not have many other options if you want it now. The Rebel is essentially a beefed up Rock Chucker. If I was making to look the dive right now for magnum rifle reloading, it's the kit I would buy.
 

Jud96

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I’m not a fan of the kits. The only good things you’re really going to get are the press, loading block, case trimmer, deburring tools, powder measure, and loading manual. I much prefer and recommend piecing a kit together based on your budget and end goal.

I recommend any good new or used single stage press from RCBS, Lee, Redding, or Hornady. If you want an auto powder dispenser get the Chargemaster Lite or if you have the money get an FX120i with the autotrickler. If you want to go the cheaper but still effective route, get a digital scale from RCBS, Frankford Arsenal, or Hornady and the Lee Perfect powder measure. Get a Forster case trimmer or if you want to budget the Lee hand trimmers are simple and cheap. Lyman inside and outside VLD deburring tools. Any powder trickler will work, same with the powder funnel and loading block. Get 2-3 loading manuals and read them front to back. I like the Sierra, Nosler, and Lee manuals the best. Get an RCBS or Frankford arsenal hand priming tool or the RCBS bench mounted priming tool.

I have pieced together my reloading setup and I don’t think one single manufacturer makes the best stuff and I have products from just about every manufacturer. I feel like building your own kit can get you more for your money and you won’t be lacking in any area like you might be with a kit. Just my opinion.
 

QuietTexan

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Nov 16, 2020
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Texas
I would invest in measuring equipment first, before loading equipment. Get a good set up of calipers, mics and a stand, comparators, some case gauges and start taking measurements on factory ammo. There's a learning curve to taking precision measurements, and quality measuring tools will serve you well for a long time. You can't bump a shoulder .001" if you can't measure .001" with accuracy and precision.

You'll need a chrono too, practicing with factory ammo will save you trouble once you start shooting hand loads over it.

The scale will probably be the single most expensive part to buy. Buy once, cry once. It's the core of everything. Perfect brass prep goes out the window if you're dropping inconsistent charges.

My two biggest regrets are 1) buying a single stage press and not a Redding T-7 from the beginning, and buying a cheaper scale. The turret would really simplify my loading process versus switching out dies in the press.

Since he did want a kit recommendation though I'd say the Hornady Lock-n-Load Classic kit with the Deluxe upgrade (085010). Any given piece might not be as good as the RCBS equivalent but it comes with calipers, an electronic scale, trickler, and kinetic puller. All things I've actually used compared to the balance scale that comes in the Rock Chucker kit, so it's more of a complete "get a finished product" kit than the RCBS in my opinion. The Rebel kit might be more in line with with the Hornady offering than the Rock Chucker kit.
 

Sockeye66

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Washington
I'm with Jud96 on this one, if finances allow, get a chargemaster lite, a good single stage press, and if there's one thing that's for sure, get quality manuals. Most of us long time reloaders develop our own routine and keep learning.
 

59FLH

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Jan 3, 2019
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Mid Atlantic
Since all I know about your goals is what's in your post I have this recommenndation.

Kits are a great place to start for beginners, from there you can decide from personal experience if a certain piece of the equipment meets your needs and expectations.

For 300WM I would recommend an O Frame Press Kit, Redding, RCBS, Hornady, Lyman, etc. I like Redding presses, Hornady gives you free bullets, and my oldest O press is a Rock Chucker II. ....Flip a coin?
 

Kmccord

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Reilly Springs, TX
I would piece together my own kit and not be stuck with one brand, if you want to cry once start with a good press. If you are dead set on a single stage press, I would suggest the Forster CO-AX, those are hard to find in stock, if you cannot wait, I would suggest the Frankford Arsenal. I have this press and I recommend it, very nice press and no shell holders, the only thing is you would need to purchase a hand primer. I would recommend a RCBS Chargemaster powder thrower and scales, and I would also look at a balance beam scale to verify as well, the electronic scales can drift at times. As for dies, I would go either Redding or Forster, and if you want you can always piece together those as well instead of buying a set. I wanted the Redding Master Hunter set for my 6.5 Creed, but buying it at 154.00 was not what I wanted to do, so I purchased a Redding F/L sizer and a Forster Ultra Micro Seater die, it was cheaper than buying the set from Redding. You are going to need a caliper, I recommend the dial calipers over the digital, you run out of battery and you are dead until you purchase another battery. You will need guages to verify headspace when sizing, so you can bump shoulder around .002, Hornady makes a good set and you will need the guages to measure CBTO (Cartridge base to ogive) Hornady makes a good set for those as well. This is just to get you started, there are other items you will find out as you go along.
 

BallisticsGuy

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Heck
Kits suck. You usually end up with a lot of stuff you don't need. Find a used RCBS Rockchucker on ebay. Order yourself a Dillon electronic scale and an RCBS 5-0-5 beam scale. Order a set of RCBS shell holders. Find a used (has to be used because they don't make them anymore) RCBS Trim Pro (not a trim pro2) and a set of shell plates and a set of pilots. Find an RCBS quick change funnel kit and any brand powder thrower except for Lee. A Dillon tumbler and 20lbs of crushed walnut hull and an RCBS hand priming tool and primer flip tray. Add dies and you're running.
 

Jud96

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As others suggested, search eBay and gun shows for used presses and reloading equipment. I picked up my RCBS JR3 press for $40 at a gunshow and it’s like brand new condition. I also bought a Redding 3BR powder measure for $50 from a local gun shop and those are normally $180-200 when new. I also highly recommend the Hornady headspace and bullet comparator kits.
 
Joined
Sep 13, 2020
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Vermont
A little late here , but you might want to look into a Dillon BL550 , you can always upgrade that unit into a RL550.. Its kinda a single stage/progressive press 300 bucks for the press , manual indexing , and fully upgradable.. outstanding service , and a no bs. warranty. I do agree with the others about making your own "kit" as some products are better than others..
 

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