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Question...

Discussion in 'Ammo & Reloading' started by O4L, Apr 1, 2021.

  1. O4L

    O4L Moderator Staff Member

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    So I've been thinking about getting a basic Lee Loader and trying to scrape up enough components to reload 500-1000 rounds.

    I've got plenty of time and I'm sure I can manage to do it right.

    What do you all think?
     
  2. Aries

    Aries Sharpshooter

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    I think by the time you finish reloading a thousand rounds the cost of a Lee press and dies will seem like a LOT less money.
     
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  3. O4L

    O4L Moderator Staff Member

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    Maybe so but I'm in no rush. Heck if I only did fifty here and twenty there it wouldn't take all that long.

    I know I don't know what I don't know but surely it's not like rocket surgery.
     
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  4. O4L

    O4L Moderator Staff Member

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    Well I sorted through 750 rounds of the brass that was so generously given to me.

    So far I've found 250 of X-TREME and about 100 of AMMO LOAD. I don't know if those are reload companies or what. Just curious.

    The AMMO LOAD brass is the stuff that has a small ridge inside the case about one third the way up from the bottom.

    I've also sorted out 80 SPEER and 100 Winchester.

    So if I'm going to do this, what powder, primers, and bullets do I need to start looking for to make up some range ammo?
     
  5. O4L

    O4L Moderator Staff Member

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    So with a little bit of internet research I'm finding that the AMMOLOAD brass is junk. ???

    Also CBC brass has problems.???

    Should I chunk both of these?

    Any others to avoid reloading?
     
  6. rockchalk06

    rockchalk06 Sharpshooter

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    I'd not risk the AMMOLOAD stuff. I've been handloading for 25 years or so and never used the stuff. Not a shortage of 9mm brass enough for me to risk it. Not sure what head stamp is CBC.

    Primers: I like federal small pistol, but in this market, anything that is small pistol works. If you get magnum primers, download by 5-10% and work up.

    Powder: W231 was my go to until I ran out and found HP-38. @Mad Professor told me it's the same stuff under a different brand. After comparing the two, I have the same grouping, velocity and cleanliness using HP-38 v's W231, so I buy what he says. HP-38 has been easier for me to find in this market, so I have been on it. I did find W231 at Village Tactical last weekend and bought a couple pounds.

    Bullets: My favorite was always Montana Gold 124 grain FMJ, but again, this market is tuff. Anything 115/124/147 jacketed works. I run cast coated bullets in my 45, but I don't trust running lead at 9mm @1200 FPS. That's my opinion only.
     
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  7. Mad Professor

    Mad Professor Sharpshooter

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    Hit the xtreme (and others) with a magnet.

    Any other stepped brass is junk too.

    I don’t have any issues with CBC. I do see reports.



    But I will say that my honest and and most transparent recommendation is to not get into reloading at this time.

    “You” won’t want to spend the investment to do it right and there are no “deals” right now on anything. You’ll end up with half-azzed ammo and lots of wasted components.

    Wait a year or so and 1/2 the people or more that are doing what you are talking about doing, will have stuff up for sale making it a buyers market. It is a cycle that continues to repeat.

    Sell the brass while it’s bringing good $$.
     
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  8. O4L

    O4L Moderator Staff Member

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    Well that's discouraging but I appreciate your honesty.

    By saying "You" won't want to spend the investment to do it right... Do you mean because I'm considering using a handloader instead of a single stage or better loader? Is it because I won't buy any other equipment that you or others use to do many thousands of reloads?

    I haven't and probably never will shoot more than 1000 rounds of 9mm a year if that makes any difference. I just don't have the opportunity to shoot a lot unless something changes.

    I have worked with my hands and with tools all my life and like I said before, I know I don't know what I don't know, but I'm definitely willing to learn.

    I am very thrifty, frugal, tight, whatever you want to call it and I see this as an opportunity to have some extra ammo without spending near a dollar a round.

    Also if ammo stays high priced I most likely won't shoot at all so if I can save some money then I'll be at least able to shoot a few times a year.

    Thanks for your input.
     
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  9. HFS

    HFS Sharpshooter

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    Sir, step away from the toolbox!
    If I recall, 9x19mm is actually a slightly tapered case (like .30 Carbine also).
    I want to say that Lee has made the "take a hammer to it" loader in both calibers and the instructions for both said those two are harder to resize than "normal" straight wall cases.
     
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  10. Cowbaby

    Cowbaby Sharpshooter

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    if you shoot a 1000 rds a year it would be worth looking into. Right now getting the primers reasonable is a little tough but you always keep an eye out for them and you will eventually get a brick or two spotted. Even if you pay one hundred dollar a brick thats 10cents a round.

    For something like a pistol a lb of powder will do a bunch. It is running about 33-38 dollars a pound here and I would imagine a can would get you through at least 300 rds. There are online calculators that will tell you how many rounds you will get out of a lb for the grain charge you use. In your case it most likely would be 15-20grains so its cost ends up negligible. maybe a few cents. Loading for a mag rifle with 80 grains ends up costing something you could measure as you may only get 80rds to the can for that.

    Main thing is to get started looking for a press. I found my little RCBS Jr 5 for 30 bucks at a pawn shop and it has paid for itself 1000x. Then get your dies which are around 50 bucks per set. Then a 50 dollar powder scale and 20 dollar caliper will get you started. You can even get a caliber specific Lee Loader for a song that will crank out rounds on the cheap for 50 bucks or so if you have to. Just slow is all.,

    The bullets you can spend how much ever you want here. For a box of 50 Noslers, Bergers and the like for 50bucks to 7 cent bullet pulls from online places or even plated bullets if you like them on the cheap.

    IF you have the cases helps as that is where most of your expense is at if buying new. But you can find bulk buy once fired used ones all the time.

    I am currently loading 300win for 70 cents total with brand new cases, 20 dollar powder from Gene Sears and Hornady Interlocks to give you an idea of what you can save if your patient. The second loading of these cases will be around 35 cents. Loading 30/30 with bullet pulls,BL-C2and used cases for maybe 20 cents.

    Load data can be found on all the powder and bullet companies websites for free, the Sierra and Hornady phone apps or a manual.

    Have fun
     
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2021

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