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Reloading Ammunition Anyone?


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#1 Myc

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Posted 04 July 2020 - 10:31 AM

So I've recently been gifted a Hornady Lock-n-Load auto-progressive reloading press with many extra parts, dies, and accessories. (Also - empty brass, primers, powder, bullets - everything I need to begin reloading today.)

 

The only thing the kit did not come with is a grains scale for measuring powder.

 

Anyone have a recommendation for a good, reliable, accurate scale capable of measuring grains?


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#2 makinbones69

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Posted 04 July 2020 - 10:35 AM

Use a jewlers scale that has a grain measurement alot do this is the one I use. Make sure u calibrate it tho u don't wanna fuck around overloading ur rounds. U can convert the carat. Or just get a grain measure off Amazon. I don't reload rounds but would probably just do that


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Edited by makinbones69, 04 July 2020 - 10:38 AM.

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#3 makinbones69

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Posted 04 July 2020 - 10:39 AM

https://www.amazon.c...i_kkkaFbHT8072V
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#4 Myc

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Posted 04 July 2020 - 12:40 PM

That's superior to the ones I was looking at.

It will also display units in grains - so no conversion necessary.

 

The person who gifted me the setup will allow me to use his scale for the time being but I didn't take a look at what he was using. I've spent the morning familiarizing myself with all of the intricate parts and figuring out a place to mount the tool. I think that was the challenge. He had broken this station down into individual components and it's fairly complicated to re-assemble from scratch. I'm just about there and it's ready to mount and set up for a test round. Everything is going back together perfectly.

 

 

Thanks for your input !


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#5 pharmer

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Posted 04 July 2020 - 02:43 PM

Dillon is the industry standard for reloading stuff. They wouldn't steer you wrong on a scale.

 

Rifle stuff?



#6 Juthro

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Posted 04 July 2020 - 03:46 PM

I use an old RCBS balance beam type scale that used to be my grandpa's.  You can get a new one for about $150.

 

Its made for reloading, and is calibrated down to 1/10 of a grain.

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Edited by Juthro, 04 July 2020 - 03:52 PM.

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#7 PJammer24

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Posted 04 July 2020 - 04:11 PM

So... My pseudo hill jack self is all about packing your own ammo...

 

This homesteading kinda thing made me think of this...

 

Have you tried to buy a presto caner lately??? Completely sold out!! presto's site, amazon, ebay.... all of them.... on Ebay, you can get one of the big ones for $200!

 

I get that it is garden season and people are canning but there must be a lot of people thinking bout life without grocery stores if demand for prestos has eclipsed supply!!

 

I say presto because that is the go to cheapest option that i kno of... the all americans won't even fit on some stoves...

 

revolutions take many forms and we are in one....


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#8 Myc

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Posted 05 July 2020 - 11:59 AM

So I really had a blast yesterday. The neighbor who gifted me the tool was very surprised that I got the machine re-assembled so quickly. Matter of fact, he wanted to come take a look so I invited him over for a few.

 

While we were visiting we went over to his house to look for some miscellaneous small parts which seemed to be missing.

Dude opens up a safe - full of disassembled pistols heaped in boxes. Then he looks up and offers me a pistol if I can re-assemble it correctly. One hour later I had fully rebuilt a Ruger - Single Six - .22 caliber pistol. Ready to fire.

I didn't realize how fun all of the little intricate parts and springs could be. Very rewarding to say the least. I'm over today to see if he'll let me take another project to re-assemble.

 

Additionally, he loaned me a balance beam like the one featured in Juthro's post. So I can get to work setting up to reload .38 pistol rounds.


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#9 PJammer24

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Posted 05 July 2020 - 12:19 PM

Nice!! I don't have any "likes" left apparently but that sounds like it was a blast!!



#10 Juthro

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Posted 05 July 2020 - 01:57 PM

.38 specials were the first rounds I ever reloaded for my own gun.  I would have been around 14 or so at the time, and was using a Lee loader kit, along with a Lee bullet mold.   Your bench mounted press is much more consistent then the Lee Loader will ever be, the lee kit actually just uses a measuring scoop to measure powder (no scale), but the lee kit will fit in a small kit bag and can be used anywhere, including the field. 

 

You just need primers, powder, bullets, and a small rubber mallet.   It will all fit in a small rucksack.  You wont get match grade consistency out of your ammo, but it is plenty accurate, and consistent enough for hunting and self defense.  Kind of a cool bug out bag type set up, or a great entry level kit to get into the hobby. 

 

They still make them, and they are relatively cheap (under $50), and they have a good assortment of kits for  both common rifle, and pistol calibers (you need a different kit for each caliber) .  I thought Myc might get a kick out of seeing one if he had not before.

 

[Direct Link]

 


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#11 pharmer

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Posted 06 July 2020 - 07:55 AM

An interesting fact to know and tell....

 

when the 30.06 round was being engineered it specified a specific bullet by weight and a specific powder.

 

with the intent that under dire circumstances a soldier in the field could dip an empty brass into the powder, fill it to the neck, seat a bullet by hand, and expect it to fire with accuracy near what factory produced bullets produce.

 

you gotta love engineers


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#12 Mycol

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 09:24 AM

An interesting fact to know and tell....
 
when the 30.06 round was being engineered it specified a specific bullet by weight and a specific powder.
 
with the intent that under dire circumstances a soldier in the field could dip an empty brass into the powder, fill it to the neck, seat a bullet by hand, and expect it to fire with accuracy near what factory produced bullets produce.
 
you gotta love engineers


Man those old BARs turn me on, and you just gave me another reason to love them.

#13 Myc

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 10:06 AM

Well gents, I hit a little snag with the reloading. 

Apparently, the fellow who gifted me to tool had more ambition than patience. I've been spending some real hours studying and attempting to set up the automated process and found that several precision parts were bent or out-of spec. Follow that with one of the advancement pawls shearing-off during some gentle testing and setup........

Looks like this machine will have to go back to the manufacturer for re-calibration and factory setup unless I can convince them of my skills with machinery. 

I'm still not done with this adventure - just delayed. 

 

And it's a good thing I have reloading materials in hand. Good luck finding anything on the store shelves. 

I was just doing this for a hoot and a way to stay occupied with a highly detailed process. (Something to think about and keep the mind busy all day.) But I have no shortage of ammunition for all of the firearms that I posses. ;)

Turns out that I'm pretty handy with tearing down and properly re-assembling fire-arms. That neighbor of mine has a chuck-TON of projects that need attention - including one of those BAR rifles !!!

I've currently got a .22 cal high-precision target pistol on the bench and in the coming weeks I'll rebuild an AR-15. The list goes on. If all goes well I can spend the remainder of the lock-down learning gun-smith skills. And maybe create a new side-line for myself in the process. ;)

Just don't be wasting your ammo on the target range !!  It's in short supply these days. 


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#14 Juthro

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 03:23 PM

Yeah, I've never messed with one of those progressive presses, I've only used a single stage style.  The single stage style is somewhat more consistent, and desirable if your trying to make super high precision match grade ammo, but they are quite slow to use compared to a progressive style press, which is more designed for loading a lot of ammo quickly.

 

Sorry to hear about your setbacks brother, but I look forward to hearing about how you overcome them :)



#15 pharmer

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 09:04 PM

the progressive machines are best for pistol rounds

 

my Dillon would not feed a rifle bullet into the casing so it wasn't all that progressive. you had to manually place the bullet in the neck before you could seat the bullet with the die in the press.

 

and as you say, precision rifle ammo should be baby'd every step of the way. for heavens' sake, you have to trim the neck almost every time you re-use the brass, it stretches just enough to muck up the headspace. you don't get that kind of precision from a progressive

 

but for reloading competition pistol ammo you can't beat 'em



#16 Juthro

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 11:56 PM

Yeah, I'll stick with the old single stage Rock Chucker press I learned on back when I was boy.  It's over 50 years old and is still does what is asked of it.   Progressive presses have come a long ways since they came out, but IMO, I still think a single stage press can produce a more consistent product, both for rifle and pistol, but at a much slower rate. 

 

But the other side of that is most shooters that don't practice regularly, don't have the skill and ability to utilize the little bit of extra consistency you can get from precision loading.  Just cuz a gun and ammo combo is capable of shooting a .61", five shot group,  @25 yards doesn't mean the guy pulling the trigger is capable of making it do so.  Even cheap factory ammo tends to be capable of more accuracy then most shooters possess the ability effectively use.

 

But I know with the products available on the market today, it comes down to mostly preference, and what you learned with.  Both kinds of press are highly capable reloaders, it just comes down to what camp your in, kind of like the chevy, vs ford debate



#17 Myc

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 10:16 AM

I'm really interested in learning to reload rifle rounds and that is next on the agenda.

 

Neighbor and I have made friends. We like to hang out and talk - spend time together - eat meals - just stuff to divert attention and stave-off loneliness brought on by isolation.

That being said, he has a single-stage press that he offered to allow me to use since he is all loaded up and doesn't need it at the moment. I proposed that we hang out and just have fun goofing-off playing with complicated stuff. I'm not sure what type of press he's using but I'm excited to do some setup and reloading.

Will keep posting as thing progress. I tried calling Hornady manufacturing but virus crap has them in a tail-spin as far as customer service response. I'll send off an email today and see if I can get any reply.


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#18 TVCasualty

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 12:21 PM

While I haven't gotten into reloading yet, I do have a gunsmith-related question: How easy is it to rebuild a match-grade .22 air rifle (replace the seals, basically)?

 

It was made in Argentina, is pretty old, was very expensive when new, and it's scary accurate even with just iron sights (I hit a stalk of wheat straw at ~50 feet away, which I knew I hit because the seed head fell over and swung like a pendulum on the fibers that hadn't been cut), and powerful enough for hunting small game at up to 30 yds (maybe 50).

 

A related question for anyone who cares to answer is what do y'all think of air rifles in general (for hunting/survival)?

 

I mean the real heavy-duty, hunting-grade rifles in calibers like .308, .357, and .50 (etc.). Some can be pressurized manually, which seems to make for an ideal survival hunting weapon since you could carry more ammo thanks to all its weight (and volume) being in the form of projectiles (no brass/powder). It would also be considerably quieter than a firearm, though the large caliber air rifles can still be surprisingly loud.


Edited by TVCasualty, 09 July 2020 - 12:23 PM.

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#19 Juthro

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 01:39 PM

I like PCP (pre charged pneumatic) air guns, and have thought seriously about getting myself one.  They are almost silent, and very accurate.  They totally have the enough power to be a viable hunting tool, especially the larger bore guns.   

 

It's a lot of work to pump them up by hand, but its definitely doable.  Most folks tend to get a paintball gun tank, or SCBA tank charged with nitrogen for quick refills.  One of the advantages of nitrogen, is that it is always dry.  When you pump air into the tank (by hand, or electric pump) pressure causes the humidity in the air to condense, and you can end up with water in your system.  That can cause rust, which can cause seal failure, or valves to leak.  You can't add oil, cuz it will ignite with the O2 in the air at those high pressures (think diesel engine) 

 

My nephew own a few, and has had to replace seals before.  Though I was't there to watch or help, it was a job he was able to do himself without much trouble.  The guns he's using are Benjamin Marauders.  At one point he had one in .177, .22, and .25 caliber.  IMO, they are all capable of being lethal.



#20 pharmer

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 01:41 PM

At $1800 for a large caliber air rifle I'm waiting a couple years. The technologies are fairly new and not time tested. AND it's 1800 to be accurate only out to 150yards. Certainly not bad but to me that's something I'd need to win the lottery to be that carefree with 1800.

 

Point being, new technologies haven't worn out enough to need fixing yet. So that's unknown territory to anybody but industry insiders.

 

That said, I love the idea of being able to bonk a deer on the head with a large-slow moving pellet in my backyard and have nobody hear it happen.






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