New Guy Looking for a Place to Start

Talk about your 450b reloading experience, ask questions, etc...

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New Guy Looking for a Place to Start

Postby DrPhil » Wed Dec 02, 2009 6:15 pm

ok, i realize there are probably countless forums and resources i could use to get started, but, since this pertains to my new 450b upper, and since you guys have been so helpful so far, i figured i'd start here.

at roughly $1.44/per round, i just bought the last 4 boxes of hornady 450b rounds my local gun shop had (wow...couldnt find them ANYWHERE else really even online, but my local guy had em. definitely had to support him!), but i cant justify paying that forever. i think it's finally time for me to start reloading.

so here's my question(s)...where do i start? i realize reloading will pay for itself in the long run and i hate to sound so cheap, but i dont want to make a HUGE investment in a reloading hobby if i soon find out it's not for me or i find myself NOT reloading that much. so i'd like to start cheap. i understand dillon precision, RCBS, etc are great companies/equipment, but lee precision seems to match my wallet a bit better. actually, the hand press kit looks like a great place to start.

that being said, what suggestions do you have, is there a list of basics i need in order to start and where are the best places to buy?

assuming i need certain powder, certain bullets, certain primers, dies, the hand press kit, a powder measurer, a scale maybe...what else?

thanks in advance for your help!
DrPhil
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Re: New Guy Looking for a Place to Start

Postby Siringo » Wed Dec 02, 2009 6:35 pm

There is nothing wrong with the Lee hand press, other than it is slow. I have one that I take with me when I am on the road loading ammo in my hotel room.

I use Hornady dies, Lee Hand Press and an electonic scale. Your best bet is to find a local shop that sells reloading equipment and they can get you going. many of the loading manuals, such as Hornday, have a guide at the front of the book about the basics.
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Re: New Guy Looking for a Place to Start

Postby DrPhil » Wed Dec 02, 2009 6:42 pm

good to hear, and thanks for the quick response!

ok so a great example of a stupid question: are the dies are interchangeable with any press?

so far, i've only found the hornady dies for the 450b...is that the only company making them for now?
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Re: New Guy Looking for a Place to Start

Postby Siringo » Wed Dec 02, 2009 7:07 pm

To my knowledge -- only Hornady makes the dies at this point. They are a quality die. Maybe CH4D makes them also, but they are more expensive.

Yes the dies are interchangable. Thread sizes are standardized.
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Re: New Guy Looking for a Place to Start

Postby Colohunter » Wed Dec 02, 2009 7:11 pm

Lee makes good equipment, I use mostly their equipment for my reloading. I haven't used their hand press, but I have thought about picking one up for smaller batches, or reloading on the road/range. You could also look at one of their basic single stage presses that comes as a kit. If you don't need the portability of the hand press the bench mounted press will make sizing cases a little less tiring. Also the kit will get you started with just about everything you need minus dies and components.

Reloading is definitely cheaper than loaded ammo if you only look at the cost of components, but once you factor in time and the reloading equipment the savings may not be so drastic. But if you are like many of us you will find that the reloading in and of itself becomes a hobby.
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Re: New Guy Looking for a Place to Start

Postby DrPhil » Wed Dec 02, 2009 7:23 pm

great info...love it, keep it coming!

ok, browsing amazon in search of some good books.

planning on grabbing a hand press for starters at least and the dies of course.

what powder, primers and bullets should i be looking for/at...and what are your preferred places to pick them up at?
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Re: New Guy Looking for a Place to Start

Postby MudBug » Wed Dec 02, 2009 8:00 pm

I wouldn't go anywhere near that hand press except for limited use on the road or at the range like others are doing. I know it works, but it will just make the process almost painful and slow.

The reality is that reloading equipment holds it value pretty well. If you decide later that reloading is not for you then you can sell the stuff with very little loss.

So my recommendation would be at least one of the Lee Challenger Kits

Then later if you find you like it you can upgrade the press to a Lee Classic Cast and then you can sell the challenger press or set it up for some light duty task.
Eric

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"War is less costly than servitude. The choice is always between Verdun and Dachau." - Jean Dutourd
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Re: New Guy Looking for a Place to Start

Postby DrPhil » Thu Dec 03, 2009 6:41 pm

Well, and looking at the price on Midway, 93.99 isnt bad, considering the hand press kit's price coupled with the price of the other items i'd likely need to get that going.

my thought was that i'd likely want the hand press anyways, as i'd rarely make more than 20 or 40 at a time for a range session (450b, that is). but you've got me tempted with the challenger kit, that's for sure!

so the guy who swapped the 450 upper to me gave me about 75 pieces of Hornady brass, plus i just got my hands on 80 more Hornady rounds...so what primers would i be looking for (size and type) for this brass?

also, what powder should i be looking for? i'm not looking to experiment with reloading hot loads or push this caliber to the limits or anything. it would be simply to play and plink or use for hunting rounds (although for now at least, the factory loads will be my hunting rounds).

AND, does anyone have a source for the dies (that may actually have them in stock)? out until the 2nd week of January at Midway and Midsouth is out as well.
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Re: New Guy Looking for a Place to Start

Postby wildcatter » Thu Dec 03, 2009 8:26 pm

DrPhil wrote:Well, and looking at the price on Midway, 93.99 isnt bad, considering the hand press kit's price coupled with the price of the other items i'd likely need to get that going.

my thought was that i'd likely want the hand press anyways, as i'd rarely make more than 20 or 40 at a time for a range session (450b, that is). but you've got me tempted with the challenger kit, that's for sure!

so the guy who swapped the 450 upper to me gave me about 75 pieces of Hornady brass, plus i just got my hands on 80 more Hornady rounds...so what primers would i be looking for (size and type) for this brass?

also, what powder should i be looking for? i'm not looking to experiment with reloading hot loads or push this caliber to the limits or anything. it would be simply to play and plink or use for hunting rounds (although for now at least, the factory loads will be my hunting rounds).

AND, does anyone have a source for the dies (that may actually have them in stock)? out until the 2nd week of January at Midway and Midsouth is out as well.

Your new to reloading, so you are very right not to push any limit, at all. Of course you can create a very dangerous situation by under-loading as well. My advice is to get one of the better loading books and start reading and read allot. This is a life long path you are going down and you'd better take the right trail. If you blow something up by trying to imitate something you read here, you can't blame anyone but yourself. With that in mind we will help all we can and you will soon gain enough experience to be very confident of your work, for it is very satisfying..
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Re: New Guy Looking for a Place to Start

Postby DrPhil » Fri Dec 04, 2009 4:23 pm

i'm browsing various books (based on reader reviews) at amazon now, thanks for that advice.

any idea who actually has the 450b dies in stock?
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