Who reloads.....and why?

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by Mr. 16 gauge, Jun 1, 2015.

  1. DBateman

    DBateman AH Senior Member

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    Well that's a good question.

    I shot a fair bit growing up, mostly rimfire competition and some hunting, we did have centrefire rifles some of which were we loaded for.

    I started reloading because I shoot a few oddball rounds that I couldn't easily get factory ammo for.
    Then latter on I moved to fullbore shooting, so I started loading 308.

    Then I got into pistol shooting and needed to be able to shoot large volumes of rounds, so I moved from single stage to a progressive presses. Altho I do still load a lot of stuff on a single stage press.

    Now the NE rounds have sparked my interest, the only NE round I own is a Ruger No1 in 450/400.
    A box of 20 rounds cost well over $100AUD over here, in fact the only listed price I could find just now is $169AUD for a box Hornady DG ammo then I have to try and get it 1000 miles or so to me.
    So once again I resorted to rolling my own. I managed to find a 100 Hornady cases brought some RCBS dies and away I went.


    I do enjoy reloading. Especially when I'm only loading small lots of ammo, 100 rounds or less.
     

  2. DBateman

    DBateman AH Senior Member

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    As far as reloading books/manuals go, I would recommend you get yourself a few.
    Mainly to compare load data between them. Have a bit of a read of them and get your head around the subject.
    When you buy a set of dies ect they come with instructions, just follow them and you'll be right.
    There are lots of different ways to do things. But starting out just stick with the way the manufacture says to do it.

    As far as starter kits go, I started with a Lee Anniversary Kit. It was good value and gave me everything I needed to get started. It was good value for money and has served me well, the press and powder thrower are still in use.

    That being said I would recommend a Forster Co-Ax press, they're a very good press.
     
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  3. Tim Beahan

    Tim Beahan AH Member

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    Having blown up a couple of pistols due to an error in a reloading guide (and my naivety) my best advice is get as many manuals as possible. Many are available on-line, and I know of one paid internet site (loaddata.com) which is an excellent source. If I find a fair number of recipes that seem to agree, I start low and work my way up. Fortunately, I still have all my fingers, and plan to keep them that way. Oh, by the way, avoid cheap digital scales. Not so sure about expensive ones- I'm a beam guy all the way.
     

  4. Cornelius 1

    Cornelius 1 AH Senior Member

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    To tim beahan
    What you mean by "im a beam guy all the way"
    Im here to learn more
     

  5. Panielsen

    Panielsen AH Enthusiast

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    Good advice. I also go to the powder manufacturer's site as most of them have load data. Just been to the Hodgdon site to get the data I needed for my .458 WM using Varget Powder. I do that sometimes as different manuals do vary to some degree and may not list the powders I already own. Good luck!
     

  6. Von Gruff

    Von Gruff AH ENABLER GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    A beam scale as opposed to a digital scale. The beam scale I started out with about 40 years ago is still giving excellent service and will see me out. I tried a digital for short time but it sit under the bench now.

    One thing to keep in mind when setting up the FLS (full length sizing) die is that set down to the shell holder as is often recommended can over size the case. It is better to set the die to suit your chamber or the oversizing can start to stretch the cases and cause short brass life.
     

  7. ChrisG

    ChrisG AH Fanatic

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    I have 2 rifles down from about 5 and in my life I have probably owned 20-30 different rifles. Not to mention handguns. I can reload a box of 50 .308's with a 165 grain hornady interlock for the same price as I can buy a box of 20 really cheap ones. I used to have a .45-70 but I just sold it, as the .375 H&H will do everything the .45-70 will do, only it does it better. I am a minimalist. I would rather have two rifles I am comfortable with, practice with, and shoot well, versus having 10 that I just don't have the space to stock powder, bullets, 3 or 4 different types of primers, let alone dies and every other little thing for. I shoot every weekend with the .375 H&H and it costs me about 25% of factory loads if I hand load them, especially after the 2nd,3rd,4th and 5th times loading the brass. The .308 and the .375 both use the same powder, Alliant RL17 and I just buy it by the 5 pound canister which saves money too.

    At the end of the day though, I like that I can make my ammunition the way I want and not the way someone else thinks it ought to be.
     

  8. Diamondhitch

    Diamondhitch AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    Im quite surprised to hear people saying this. My auto metering digital scale is a godsend, 1.5-2 times as fast as throwing a charge, weighing it and trickling powder to get things perfect.
     
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  9. tgreene

    tgreene AH Member

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    My two cents.
    30 year reloading experience. Initially for cost savings. Now to improve performance, and just the satisfaction of developing a load, along with the mental health aspect ( reloading is great fun). Great stress relief component. Have run the gamut with my hunting and rifle experience. North American mountain hunting. Grand slam of sheep. Bow exotics. Then came Africa. Wow, Africa! I reload to shoot. I shoot and dream of my next return to Africa. My big five? Jarrett rifle circa 1985, 280 Ackley Improved ( a duplicate of the famous Grits Gresham rifle by Kenny). 1992 Jarrett rifle, caliber 300 Jarrett (Based off of a necked down 8mm mag). Dakota 375 H&H African (of course). Dakota African 404 Jeffries (A lion is in my future with this rifle). Kreieghoff double, 470 Nitro Express. All but the double with Swarovski optics, 30mm. I have now morphed to cast bullets and plinking with reduced loads using AA5744 powder. To do these somewhat different calibers, and the cast bullets for the reduced loads for the heavier calibers, it is essential to be able to reload. To hunt Africa you owe it to yourself, your professional hunter, and the game you are seeking, the continued refinement of your shooting experience, your competencies, and accuracy. Reloading allows an individual to mature through the process, and maintain a high level of skill and confidence, and in the long run at reduced cost. The cost reduction is not initial , but rather long term.. Read every thing that is available, follow standard operating procedures, and enjoy the craft and the rewards that come with. Here is to your next five shot cloverleaf at the range, and the confidence you will take on your next safari. Shoot, Shoot Shoot, and dream of Africa.
     
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  10. Steve Steyr

    Steve Steyr AH Veteran

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    I, too, shoot a lot of rarer calibers. On some of them, ammo is simply not available. On others, the ammo is inordinately expensive. For instance, .218 Bee ammo is $85 for 50 rounds. I can make my own with components I have had for some time now for about $9.00 per box of 50. No brainer, there.
    I also like to make specialty loadings not offered by the factories. I have no real need to, I simply like to try different combinations.
    And finally, I simply enjoy creating ammunition the I can shoot and test. I find it very satisfying.
    Sometimes I think I enjoy reloading more than I enjoy shooting.
     

  11. Scoobyshoot

    Scoobyshoot AH Member

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  12. PHOENIX PHIL

    PHOENIX PHIL AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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  13. Michael Dean

    Michael Dean AH Enthusiast

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    I reload for several reasons; the ability to develop loads that are inherently more accurate than factory ammo, the cost savings factor and, reloading is in itself a great hobby and past time you can enjoy when you can't hunt or shoot. Hunting is restricted to given hunting seasons, shooting is often restricted by weather while reloading can be enjoyed at your leisure whenever you decide you're in the mood.
     

  14. mdwest

    mdwest AH Elite

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    a long time ago when I was doing a lot of pistol shooting I reloaded to save money...

    I recently got back into reloading.. mostly just to have fun.. (and will hopefully save a little money in the process..)..
     

  15. JMM

    JMM AH Member

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    I started reloading 40 years ago when I was a kid. Now do it since I enjoy it and I am a 30-06 guy. I load 110 grain TTSX at 35-3600 fps and slay white tail deer without effort. I cull a lot of deer each year with that load. I have shot over 200 plains game animals in Africa with the 06 and all with my loads. A-frames, Sciroccos, 200 grain Partitions, 240 grain Woodleighs are all easy to get when you load your own. 150 grain Sierras at 3000 fps will also kill deer/antelope sized animals quickly. I use the 180's for culling elk. The 06 has such a great variety of bullets available that you can load for almost any size game.
     

  16. Badboymelvin

    Badboymelvin AH Senior Member

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    I reload partly to save money (.458WM can get pricey) but mainly because I know that what is produced is quality ammunition.
    Most factory ammo for the .458 - while accurate is pretty slow. The Winchester stuff I've shot averages around 1950fps and is only loaded with a standard soft point projectile. For a similar cost, my reloads are spot on 2150fps and are loaded with a premium projectile (Woodleigh.)
    Plus I enjoy doing it. I find it very rewarding.
     
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  17. Lrntolive

    Lrntolive AH Fanatic

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    For the satisfaction. I like knowing I've squeezed as much accuracy and performance out of my rounds, and the fact that I made them myself.
     
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  18. Shawn.54

    Shawn.54 AH Fanatic

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    I started reloading at first to lower cost then to get bullet that I wanted I started as a kid with little means so a Lee kit was the way to go. 30 years later the press and powder thrower are still with me as well as auto primer.
    The fact that I got one of the first 35 Whelens Remington put out with factory loads that were weak at best only reinforced the need to reload. I very rarely buy factory ammunition.
    My Whelen, 375 Ruger, and 2 7mm-08s have never seen factory ammunition.
    And probably never will as long as they live with me.
    My 223s have seen factory ammunition only to plink and make me empty brass.
    I like to DIY and it is rewording to have success with something you make yourself. I'm currently building a 404 Jeffery and will definitely reload for it while dies are expensive they are less than one box of factory ammunition and brass is not cheap but if it can be reloaded 5 or 6 times cost is not so bad.

    Reloading can be a rewarding activity if you pay attention to detail it can be deadly if you don't. During the reloading process I will entertain company until the time of setting up to throw powder then unless I'm teaching someone I want to be alone.
    Shawn
     
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  19. Hogpatrol

    Hogpatrol AH ENABLER SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    I would say no rifle, whether factory or custom, will reach it's full potential with regards to accuracy and possibly muzzle energy without reloading. Factory ammo is a one size fits all compromise.
     

  20. PARA45

    PARA45 AH Fanatic

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    Accuracy, bullet choices and the satisfaction of hunting with the ammo I reloaded. At first I reloaded because to save money (I only had one rifle), now, I mainly do it because I use the reloading process as a way to relax. I reload for everything I own (rifles & pistols), I have not gotten into reloading shotgun shells.....yet. LOL!!!!
     
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