Just ordered my first reloading press

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Re: Just ordered my first reloading press

Postby Jake60 » Thu 27 Mar 2014 11:23 am

I run all my rifle cartridges through the sizer on a SS press.
Measure my brass and separate in 'trim/don't trim' buckets.
Then with no size die in my progressive, I load them.
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Re: Just ordered my first reloading press

Postby XSlevinn » Thu 27 Mar 2014 3:03 pm

James wrote:Generally it is not necessary to trim brass on the first re-loading. Perhaps for several loadings? How much brass stretches depends on several factors.
When the brass becomes long enough after sizing that it hits the end of the space allowed for brass in the firearm, then you gotta trim. If you are crimping, brass of uniform length gives uniform crimps.


I measured my cases and a lot of them were past the 1.750 point. Unfortunately, the chamber length gauge I got is only for bolt action rifles, which I was unaware of (It never mentions that on the site) so I am still unsure of what my rifles actual chamber length is.

So it looks like some of my even once fired brass is a bit too long for the "sweet spot" measurements.
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Re: Just ordered my first reloading press

Postby XSlevinn » Mon 07 Apr 2014 9:54 am

What's a good reloading manual? I don't know for sure which bullets I want to use or what brands I can find.. so I don't really want to get a book for a certain brand of bullets.. Is there a book that just covers reloading data in general or something? I just don't know which components I want or are available right now.
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Re: Just ordered my first reloading press

Postby Beretta96 » Mon 07 Apr 2014 11:15 am

XSlevinn wrote:What's a good reloading manual? I don't know for sure which bullets I want to use or what brands I can find.. so I don't really want to get a book for a certain brand of bullets.. Is there a book that just covers reloading data in general or something? I just don't know which components I want or are available right now.

Bullet brands don't really matter if the complete shape (LRNFP or etc.), design (plated or etc.) and grains (200 and etc.) are equal. I use the recipes from the powder manufacturers for developing loads. For a good beginning book, the ABC's of reloading is what I started with. Start small and build up your loads.
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Re: Just ordered my first reloading press

Postby XSlevinn » Mon 07 Apr 2014 1:49 pm

I have the ABC of reloading book and to be honest I really didn't care for it. But that makes more sense what you said. That's what I always thought.. If the components are relatively the same, then it should be fine...but then I started looking online and a lot of people were loading their cartridges using manuals that matched their bullets. I guess my problem is that I just don't know what to get first? powder? bullets? Do I just ask for 223 powder and find bullets that works with what they give me?
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Re: Just ordered my first reloading press

Postby Beretta96 » Mon 07 Apr 2014 2:51 pm

I'd first go to every powder manufacturer and download their manual. Then what I did is check what the spread is from lowest powder grains to largest powder grains in the recipes. This gave me room for some error. Look around and see what's available to buy for components. Study it against the recipes!! I can't stress that enough so you don't buy something you can't use.
Get your primers and brass, then powders and finally bullets. After a while you see what works better.
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Re: Just ordered my first reloading press

Postby XSlevinn » Mon 07 Apr 2014 3:50 pm

Thanks for the tips!
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Re: Just ordered my first reloading press

Postby Beretta96 » Mon 07 Apr 2014 5:50 pm

XSlevinn wrote:Thanks for the tips!
No problem and feel free to ask again. We all were new at this once.
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Re: Just ordered my first reloading press

Postby James » Wed 16 Apr 2014 11:07 am

I have only been reloading for 50+ years, and have never washed brass yet. Just recently got a tumbler (gift). Prior to that no brass polishing either. I have cleaned primer pockets at times with a pointed tool. Truth be known it doesn't even matter if there is a little black crud in the bottom of the primer pocket, as long as the flash hole is open. I have never seen a plugged flash hole. Bright sparkling brass is way overplayed. I have reloaded brass that was found lying in the weeds and dark as can be. It works just fine. Generally all that is on the brass is a little smoke. Wipe them with a cotton rag. Lube, size, wipe the lube off with a rag and load them. If straight walled casings and carbide dies, no lube needed.

Also just recently got a brass trimmer. For many years if the 30-30 brass got too long I would take a couple of swipes with a file across the mouth. My other calibers did not seem to stretch enough to matter. I will say that to get nice uniform crimps, brass of uniform length certainly helps. These tools are nice, but don't let the lack of them stop you from having a blast reloading your own ammo.
Carry on!
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Re: Just ordered my first reloading press

Postby XSlevinn » Wed 16 Apr 2014 11:51 am

Thanks for the info. That's part of what makes this kind of confusing. So many people have so many different beliefs and opinions that it's hard for someone new to reloading to figure out how they want to start. What's fact or fiction? Haha. Guess I'll just go with whatever sounds best to me? My main concern is the trimming and making that as easy as possible. Sounds like using one of those attachments for a drill might not be a bad idea.
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Re: Just ordered my first reloading press

Postby Sam Fidler » Thu 17 Apr 2014 4:13 pm

Trimming and many similar reloading practices are part of what I call the 10% rule. They make little difference on their own but when you add them all up they amount to a 10% improvement in performance. You're not likely to notice it unless your shooting 500 + yards or for competition.

Just don't violate the big ones or exceed maximum tolerances.
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Re: Just ordered my first reloading press

Postby XSlevinn » Tue 22 Apr 2014 10:30 am

Picked these two up yesterday to try out. Hopefully they work well for me.

Lyman EZ Trimmer

Lee Chamfer Tool

I think I have all that I need now for preparation and just need to prep the cases and then start reloading. Getting pretty excited to actually start loading.
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Re: Just ordered my first reloading press

Postby NormanXDm » Tue 22 Apr 2014 6:58 pm

XSlevinn wrote:Getting pretty excited to actually start loading.


For me, reloading is almost therapeutic. Almost to the point that a trip to the range is really about making empty brass to reload. A win-win in my book. :thumbsup:
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Re: Just ordered my first reloading press

Postby XSlevinn » Wed 23 Apr 2014 11:16 am

NormanXDm wrote:
XSlevinn wrote:Getting pretty excited to actually start loading.


For me, reloading is almost therapeutic. Almost to the point that a trip to the range is really about making empty brass to reload. A win-win in my book. :thumbsup:

Haha I hope it gets like that for me!
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Re: Just ordered my first reloading press

Postby XSlevinn » Thu 24 Apr 2014 11:04 am

Soo... I started case prepping last night. Set my decapping die up properly, lubed the cases and started sizing.

Went great for a couple hundred cases... Then BAM! Stuck case in the die :(

I tried to get it out with a pair of pliers.. and ended up bending the pin a little (I know, I'm special).

Then I realized I should probably look up how to properly remove the case.. I just figured a good tug on it would get it out.

So I loosened the collet? and took a punch to the pin and knocked it out with the case.. Then I couldn't get the case off the pin... ugh.

So after trying my hardest, I realize my best option is to probably take a dremel to the case and carefully cut down the neck and shoulder.

I did that and cut a little line into it and was able to bend the brass enough to remove the case... Yay! I bent the pin back to where it was pretty close to original.

So I put the decapping pin back in and tighten the collet. Run another brass through and the pin came off with the case.. Apparently I didn't tighten the collet down enough... oops.

Cut another brass off.. let's try this again..

Tighten that collet down and try again. Yes! One through. Second one? STUCK IN THE DIE AGAIN!!

I threw my arms up for the night (about 10pm) and said to hades with it.. Going to try again tonight probably.

Any advice? I don't know why the first few hundred were fine and now it's giving me trouble. I've lubed the cases and gave them a spritz every once in a while if I felt like maybe it dried too much. I tried to get lube inside of the neck as well. Am I doing something wrong?

Brass is clean and I'm using Hornady One Shot spray lube.

Thanks!
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