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"Reloaders Shoulder"


Truegent2004

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I load on a Dillon SDB and sometimes after a long loading session(s) my shoulder joint aches and I have I to stop for a few days. Keep in mind I am left handed(Use the crank with my right hand like most), 51 years old, and live in a cold winter state ( My reloader is in the basement where it can be chilly).

If I try reloading when my shoulder aches my arm feels weak and I get more high primers from not finishing strong on the upstroke.

Does this type of happen to anybody else?

Any special exercises to prevent or reduce this?

Yes I use ice and heat when necessary.

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Short answer is yes.

SDB means pistol calibers.

So... have you tried to lube your cases? It has helped me during long reload sessions.

Also, I try not to load more than a few hundred at a time. Helps avoid soreness.

Now let me put on my Personal Trainor hat...

If it is cold, I'd keep that shoulder warm. Throw a coat on. Kinda like what pitchers do between innings . After your reload session, ice it and consider taking ibuprofen if necessary.

Lastly, strengthen those shoulder muscles. No need to hit the gym. Grab a few boxes of bullets and do standing shoulder presses.

Good luck.

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A totally personal story.

One season my right shoulder started being uncomfortable during the reloading... then somewhat painful. But being a grown up man, I ignored all this.

Then, at a match, while drawing my gun, my rotator cuff tore completely. Clearly, the inflammation made it prone to tear. Tons of pain, a surgery, long and painful recovery, months of physical therapy, lost season.

So my advice is not to ignore it, but try to perhaps change the way you do your reloading. And yes, a lot of lube helps too.

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I never have a "long loading session".... :surprise:

I get bored and quit - usually load 100 rounds and quit.

I may come back an hour or two later and do another 100,

and that's okay.

I have loaded as many as 600 rounds in a single day by

taking extended breaks in between batches of 100. :cheers:

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One winter I went crazy loading enough ammo for the upcoming season. Ended up developing "tennis elbow" from the pushing upward of the pres handle to seat the primers. Now I try to limit the reloading sessions to a few hundred at a time.

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I never have a "long loading session".... :surprise:

I get bored and quit - usually load 100 rounds and quit.

I may come back an hour or two later and do another 100,

and that's okay.

I have loaded as many as 600 rounds in a single day by

taking extended breaks in between batches of 100. :cheers:

This ^^^ is the way to load, unless you have a somewhat automated press. While I can load 600 an hour on the 550 if needed, there is no point.

Also, for case lube, you can make your own...and it is so smooth!

http://www.brianenos.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=206988&hl=%20case%20%20lube%20%20lanolin

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I had the same issue. It mainly had to do with the height of the press. Try raising and lowering your press or bench to a height that feels better.

My issue went away when I changed to the Ergo roller handle by Inline Fabrication, which allowed me to start higher and not have to pull the handle as low. Looks like they only make a roller handle for the SDB. You may want to try that and use case lube.

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Afterwards, rediscover hot tub baths, and add epsom salts to the water according to package directions. Take it easy and soak in the hot tub for awhile. You can add any type of moisturizer to the bath if desired, just don't tell anyone about it. My loading sessions are usually a couple of hundred rounds, take a break, load another couple hundred. Don't pretend you're in some sort of contest to see how many you can load in a set length of time. Just because the Dillons capable of over X thousand rounds an hour doesn't mean you have to go that fast.

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I can't really make the reloader go higher or lower since the bench is fixed but maybe I could make a platform for me to stand on. I didn't know they made a roller handle for the square deal B! It looks very cool of the website. Can you set it up so the Handle is on the left side or does it have to be on the right?

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I had the same symptoms with my 650. I found it to be from the primer seating motion. My solution was to move to a 1050 because the priming is on the down stroke and with much more leverage and much smoother. My elbow pains and arm pains are much relieved and my only complaint is that the roller handle is on the horizontal plain which causes my arm to be twisted when operating. I considered fabricating a somewhat vertical handle like the hand pedal recumbent bikes, but its probably not necessary now that I'm using the 1050. I'm loading 10x more volume and have only 10% of the aches in my joints.

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I find long loading sessions all sorts of annoying for many reasons.

I mostly load 100-200 rounds a time. When I need a lot of ammo made, I just do 100-200 rd every morning after I had my coffee but before I work out, and I'll do that for a couple of weeks until I've made all the ammo I wanted to make.

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I am in my mid 30s, and understand your pain OP. I played baseball (catcher,1st B), & football (FB, LB) as a kid, and through HS. After I graduated I started playing adult softball 3-4 day per week until my son was a year old. Needless to say, my body took a beating over the years. I can feel it after a big match, or a long day at the bench.

To releive some pain while loading I made sure my press was at the right height, I try to use my body weight, and lean in to the handle when seating primers instead of using my arm to push. I normally stand to load. I usually limit my loading sessions to 600 rounds per session max. I have done 1k per session, but my wife usually finds me something to do! :)

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