GUN Holiday reloading fun

Discussion in 'On Topic' started by Cannondale, Jan 2, 2008.

  1. Cannondale

    Cannondale OT Supporter

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    So, I wanted to get some reloading tools during the holidays. I built my reloading bench a few weeks ago, and inherited an RCBS press and some .45 ACP dies earlier this year. I wanted to start reloading, but realized I was a long way from having all the tools required. I had a little digital scale, but I noticed it has some creep when it comes to the reading, something I don't want. Well, my father who understands my reloading needs, bought me an RCBS 10-10 scale for Christmas. :)

    I decided I was going to need some rifle dies, and some other tools as well. I did some research on calipers, and found that the vast majority of digital calipers are all the same model. I decided that after all the good reviews I read on that model, I would go search for the best deal on that type. Frankford Arsenal sells them with their logo on them, with a retail of $52. Not a bad price for a set of digital calipers, but I wanted to see what else was available. Well, I talked to a friend that said he bought a set at Harbor Freight, and that they were re-branded by many companies. I looked through their catalog online, and found that they had them for all of $16 with the discount. I went ahead and purchased them.

    This morning, I decided it was time to get some rifle dies and the other tools necessary. I went to Graf and Son's website and started making my list. I picked up a set of RCBS 7.5x55 Swiss full length dies, a set of RCBS 7.62x54R dies and appropriate shell-holders. I also picked up two tubes of Lee case lube. After I completed my order, I realized I had no case trimmer gauge for the swiss caliber, so I went on to Lee's site and ordered one. I spent as much on the shipping and handling as I did on the shell gauge, I went ahead and made it worth my time by getting a catalog as well.


    Hopefully they will get shipped soon enough, and I will get some pictures of my bench with all the accouterments.
     
  2. Clusive

    Clusive Happiness is a belt-fed weapon.

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    I want to start reloading soon. I have about 3.5K of 9mm brass and 2k of .223 brass in 5 gallon buckets in the garage.
     
  3. sneva

    sneva OT Supporter

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    I can help if you need. I have been reloading rifle, pistol, and shotshells for about twenty years. Do you have a single stage or progressive press? Also don't go cheap on dies. I have found that Hornady dies work well. RCBS in my opinion are junk, and Lee makes a half-assed decent die. Make sure you get factory crimp dies also for your rifle loads. Those are available from Lee. Are your scales the balnce type or electronic? Also if you have a progressive press match your powder measure to your press, otherwise I have used about all of them and really like the Hornady. I have 2 MEC 600 JR. shotshell presses, one for 12 GA. and the other for 20 & 28 GA. I bought a single stage press from Midway USA, and love it. It's cast aluminum and looks alot like an RCBS Rockchucker, and was only $100. I also have a Hornady Pro-Jector, very similar to their Lock-N-Load press, it's just an older version. Very good press. And I have a semi-progressive press that you have to manually advance the head over a single station ram. Make sure your bench is solid, overkill is good. Mine is built totally out of 2X6's and is 7 feet long. I also have another table separate from my bench for casting lead bullets, cleaning weaponry, etc. Have fun with it, and be prepared to spend a shit-load of scratch on equipment. The last whatever you just bought will not put out as much ammo as the one you shoulda bought. =]
     
  4. AB13

    AB13 New Member

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    I've had the same set of Lee Dies in .45acp since 1993 and is easily in the 100k mark. Haven't had a single issue except for routinely swapping out a decaping pin.

    I also have a set of carbide RCBS dies from 1991 in .40. It was a hand me down from a family member that has made close to 100k on them as well and I'm still using them, minus the crimp die which is a LFC.

    I run Lee Factory crimp dies on all my tool heads.
     
  5. Cannondale

    Cannondale OT Supporter

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    I've got a set of Herters (RCBS) dies from the 60's in .45ACP. They were purchased the same time my RCBS press was. They probably haven't loaded 100K rounds, but they did see some use. My dad and uncle loaded with them when they were kids.

    I could have bought a set of Lee dies for the 7.62x54R and bought the correct expander, or I could just buy the RCBS, which supposedly comes with .308 and .310. The 7.5 Swiss is a very finicky caliber because of the straight-pull action the rifle has. There is little mechanical caming, so the casing needs to be sized very precisely. I've heard that RCBS and Redding dies are both good for my particular rifle, and I didn't want to chance it. When I am looking at .308 and .223 dies, I will be buying Lee probably.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2008
  6. skeletor25rs

    skeletor25rs Yetis & Deer

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    About to start working on my bench. I picked up some RCBS dies and shell holder in .22-250 while at Cabela's over christmas. Still shopping around for equipment. Most likely will end up with RCBS there as well.
     
  7. sneva

    sneva OT Supporter

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    When you are loading for a semi-auto rifle like an AR-15, you need to use a full length sizing die. I know RCBS and Hornady have them available.
     
  8. 7

    7 First comes smiles, then lies. Last is gunfire.

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    I think you'd be hard-pressed to find a major die company that doesn't make a FL sizing die. Also Frankford Arsenal calipers are $32 not $52; I think I paid $20 a couple of years ago during a sale :o
     

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