Jump to content
Brian Enos's Forums... Maku mozo!
Chewy

Deciding maybe to make the jump into reloading

Recommended Posts

Hi All,

 

I know this type of post has been beaten ad nauseum, but just want to make sure before I make the plunge.   

 

Due to CA's changing laws around ammo (background checks every ammo transaction starting July 1),  I've considered getting into reloading as reloading supplies are not included in that and not logged. 

 

I'm the type of person that sticks to only a couple calibers -- 9mm (which I shoot the most by far, and plan on shooting the most in the near future) and  556 (not very much, yet).

 

Since I'm considering starting USPSA matches every once in a while, I figured it would be a good idea to start reloading 9mm.  

 

I've read through the FAQ on which Dillon is better for me, and I still can't decide.  

If I don't plan on reloading 556 for a good while as I want to concentrate on my pistol skills,  is the SDB a better option for me than the 550?    I know the 550 would be better IF i were reloading both calibers, I just don't see myself reloading 556 for a while (or maybe perhaps when I get sucked into it).  I have about 4k of factory 556 that i'll save the brass when i shoot. 

 

So the next question will be:   Where is the best place to buy the press?     I've bought used before on my shot shell loader and I ended up regretting it big time.  Took me so much to get it back to working order.  The unpredictable-ness of how someone treated it is what scares me from buying used.  

 

Any input would be greatly appreciated!  

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you EVER plan on reloading 556, get the 550. The SDB can't do rifle. Period. The SDB also uses proprietary dies, meaning you are stuck using Dillon dies.

 

If you go with a 550, get it set up right, you can easily load 400 an hour....I know the 650 guys will come in and say get the 650, it's faster, buy once cry once, etc. but, the caliber changes are more expensive, the press is more expensive...and to get the full use of the 650, you need the case feeder and bullet feeder, pushing the cost of the press upwards of $1k-2k. You can get a 550 already setup for 9mm for probably no more than $600, and can find deals in the $350-$500 range sometimes. 

 

As to where to buy, if you are getting a Dillon, it doesn't matter if it's used. They have a lifetime, No BS warranty. If it's messed up, box it up, ship to Dillon. All you pay is shipping. They will fix it or replace it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Grumpy,  

 

550 it is then!  This sport bug has bitten me.   Where would you suggest that I look for a complete setup for a  550 ?   ebay?  or are there other better places?

 

Thanks!

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with grumpy.  As far as where to buy, you could order from dillon, or just post a WTB here in the classifieds

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi All,
 
I know this type of post has been beaten ad nauseum, but just want to make sure before I make the plunge.   
 
Due to CA's changing laws around ammo (background checks every ammo transaction starting July 1),  I've considered getting into reloading as reloading supplies are not included in that and not logged. 
 
I'm the type of person that sticks to only a couple calibers -- 9mm (which I shoot the most by far, and plan on shooting the most in the near future) and  556 (not very much, yet).
 
Since I'm considering starting USPSA matches every once in a while, I figured it would be a good idea to start reloading 9mm.  
 
I've read through the FAQ on which Dillon is better for me, and I still can't decide.  
If I don't plan on reloading 556 for a good while as I want to concentrate on my pistol skills,  is the SDB a better option for me than the 550?    I know the 550 would be better IF i were reloading both calibers, I just don't see myself reloading 556 for a while (or maybe perhaps when I get sucked into it).  I have about 4k of factory 556 that i'll save the brass when i shoot. 
 
So the next question will be:   Where is the best place to buy the press?     I've bought used before on my shot shell loader and I ended up regretting it big time.  Took me so much to get it back to working order.  The unpredictable-ness of how someone treated it is what scares me from buying used.  
 
Any input would be greatly appreciated!  
 
 
I started shooting USPSA in 2 calibers and bought a Dillion 550 soon after. I quickly replaced it with a 650 as my monthly demands increased. I then added on both case and bullet feeder to reduce my time keeping up with practice and match requirements. Everybody is different, my approach may not work for all.

Sent from my SM-G935V using Tapatalk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 minutes ago, RJH said:

I agree with grumpy.  As far as where to buy, you could order from dillon, or just post a WTB here in the classifieds

Look at his post count...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't know how much volume I'll be shooting to be honest.  That's why I feel the 550 will be just good enough for me as I still sink quite a bit of time into my business to fund my hobbies :)

 

  Thanks guys!

 

Edited by GrumpyOne...to save the poster some trouble.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, GrumpyOne said:

Look at his post count...

 

Are you saying the new post list is about to be filled with a bunch of 10 year old threads bumped to the top with the, "i agree" post? :roflol:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 minutes ago, Chewy said:

I don't know how much volume I'll be shooting to be honest.  That's why I feel the 550 will be just good enough for me as I still sink quite a bit of time into my business to fund my hobbies :)

 

Thanks guys!

You should read the forum guidelines before trying to post an ad.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I also agree with Grumpy. Go with the 550. Many will disagree but you may also want to consider the Hornady Lock n Load AP. I ended up with the Hornady because I just couldn't pass up the deal I got. I've been running it for a couple months now and it works great. Well built.

I am in exactly the same boat as you. I shoot 9mm. A lot! I compete in USPSA. I have 556 but I rarely shoot it. I also don't see myself adopting any new calibers for a while. For sure, not till I become a Master Class shooter in Production.

I go through about 1000 rounds a month currently. I'm loading match grade 135gr rounds, tailored to my gun and preference for 9 cents per round. So I'm paying less than half of what I was when I buying. And almost a 3rd of what I was paying for match grade factory ammo. So don't let anyone tell you that there is no savings in loading 9mm.

Sent from my SM-G930F using Tapatalk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, anonymouscuban said:

I also agree with Grumpy. Go with the 550. Many will disagree but you may also want to consider the Hornady Lock n Load AP. I ended up with the Hornady because I just couldn't pass up the deal I got. I've been running it for a couple months now and it works great. Well built.

I am in exactly the same boat as you. I shoot 9mm. A lot! I compete in USPSA. I have 556 but I rarely shoot it. I also don't see myself adopting any new calibers for a while. For sure, not till I become a Master Class shooter in Production.

I go through about 1000 rounds a month currently. I'm loading match grade 135gr rounds, tailored to my gun and preference for 9 cents per round. So I'm paying less than half of what I was when I buying. And almost a 3rd of what I was paying for match grade factory ammo. So don't let anyone tell you that there is no savings in loading 9mm.

Sent from my SM-G930F using Tapatalk
 

There is no savings in reloading. You end up shooting more, so the cost is the same. LOL.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

FWIW, I reload on a 550, no case feeder, no bullet feeder, no strong mount, no roller handle. A basic 550. I reload 45ACP, 40S&W/10mm,  38/357, 9mm, and 38 super on it. I have tool heads and powder measures for each of the calibers, and except for the 45, I can switch between any of the other calibers in less than 5 minutes. 45 ACP takes a few minutes more as you need to change the primer punch and primer filler tube. In all calibers except 38 Super, I can easily get around 400 an hour without any problems...if you have 4-5 primer tubes filled. Going as fast as I can, and having no issues, you can do 600 rounds of 9mm an hour...but you will be working hard to keep that pace.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Want to add a few more things I've learned in my short reloading career.

Find a load you like, that shoots well from your gun and stick with it. A load that shoots decent groups at 25 yards. No need for anything more than that. Don't go chasing the perfect load. You'll waste time and ammo.

Pay very close attention when you're loading. It's not rocket science for the loads we make for action pistol shooting but it's easy to screw up if you're distracted. Setup your press someplace where you can load in peace. I loaded one squib because my wife decided she wanted to chat about weekend plans while I was loading. Just a minor distraction like this is all it takes.

Lastly, wait for sales and buy stuff in bulk. That's where you'll find the savings. Right now, there is a 20% off rebate for federal primers. Midway has no cost hazmat fee. Look for those deals and take full advantage of them. Nothing like have a store of components and loading whenever you need more rounds.

Hope this helps.

Sent from my SM-G930F using Tapatalk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks!    Um... what options on the 550 do you guys recommend I add.   any die recommendations as well  or go with the carbide pistol dies from dillon?

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Chewy said:

Thanks!    Um... what options on the 550 do you guys recommend I add.   any die recommendations as well  or go with the carbide pistol dies from dillon?

 

Strong mount, roller handle, carbide size die, Redding competition seat die and Lee Factory crimp die.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Chewy said:

  

I stick to a couple calibers -- 9mm (which I shoot the most by far) and  5.56 (not very much, yet).

 

How much reloading are you planning on doing ?

 

Best to buy the 550 and some good dies for your 9mm (better, tighter resizing die) -

you don't need a roller handle unless you're going to be reloading 300 rounds

at a sitting.

 

You will need a case cleaner/sorter (unless you're going to buy prepped cases;

a scale, calipers and a chrono.    

 

Good luck with your new endeavor.

 

p.s.  Move out of California

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Chewy said:

Thanks!    Um... what options on the 550 do you guys recommend I add.   any die recommendations as well  or go with the carbide pistol dies from dillon?

 

I use all Dillon dies, they have given me no problems. Carbide dies, forget any other. Lube your cases (even with carbide dies). 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Titan Reloading is having a sale on Dillon right now. Tough to find Dillon stuff discounted, but they have it.

 

Just bought a 650 from them a couple months ago $60 off. Even with shipping it was the best price by far.

 

I started with a 550. Still use it. Never getting rid of it. 550 will serve you for life. Literally.

 

Lee 4 die pistol sets are tough to beat. Especially if your using mixed 9MM range brass. Had Dillon dies when I started. Sold em.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
46 minutes ago, Hi-Power Jack said:

How much reloading are you planning on doing ?

 

You will need a case cleaner/sorter (unless you're going to buy prepped cases;

a scale, calipers and a chrono.    

 

p.s.  Move out of California

 

I would probably reload 300-500 in a sitting.  When I reloaded my shotshells I did 200 at a time, but I can imagine doing 3x that in a sitting comfortably for 9mm.   It was relaxing to me. 

 

Is buying prepped cases still economical?   I got a brass catcher and I have like 3k factory 115gr ammo that I have yet to shoot (I thought that was a lot for stocking up for ammogeddon, but I guess that's a small amount!)  I know that reloading is not going to save me money (you shoot more) but my price per round going way down sounds good (and not being logged in CA DOJ system for every round I buy after July 1)

 

Forgive my ignorance.. but why would I need a chrono?  I didn't use one for my shotshells (hmm, maybe I shoud've?)  Also I'm running a sp-01, is there any *known* good recipes or recipes you could point me to that cz's like?  or are they individually different as to what they like?  

 

I wish I could move out!  but family and my business (health care profession) keep me here.   

 

 


 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

OK, I just want to make sure I'm ordering everything I need.  I've tried to do my own homework but here goes:

 

RL 550C

Die set (Lee has a 4 set, while Dillon has a 3 set.  is there an additional one I have to get if I get the dillon set?)

Bullet Tray

Case bin and bracket

Strong mount

Aluminum Roller Handle

(Already have a powder scale)

Digital Caliper (any brands recommended?  best functional for price?)

 

CV-750 + CM-500 Case tumbler/separator

Case lube (One shot?)

 

----------------

Should I get? list

----------------

1" wrench

Primer Flip Tray 

Extra Primer Pickup Tubes

 

I'd like to make a one-time order and not start... then realize i need to order something else if you know what I mean. 

 

Any further advice / recommendations very much appreciated!

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Add a bullet puller to your list. You'll need it.

As far as good load, I shoot an SP-01 as well. I'm also an inmate of Kalifornia.

I shoot 135gr DG Bullets RN coated projectile. 3.6gr of Tightgroup. Winchester primers. Mixed range brass. 1.12 COAL.

This shoots pretty accurate out of my SP-01. About 2.5" group at 25 yards, standing, unsupported. About 135 PF.

I was shooting a lighter load. 3.3 gr of Tightgroup. Recoil was soft but a bit too slow for my sights to return. I like the little bit more pop.

You need the chrono to measure velocity to ensure you make minor Power Factor.

Where you at? If you're near me would be happy to meet at the range and you can use my chrono.

Sent from my SM-G930F using Tapatalk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, anonymouscuban said:

Add a bullet puller to your list. You'll need it.

As far as good load, I shoot an SP-01 as well. I'm also an inmate of Kalifornia.

I shoot 135gr DG Bullets RN coated projectile. 3.6gr of Tightgroup. Winchester primers. Mixed range brass. 1.12 COAL.

This shoots pretty accurate out of my SP-01. About 2.5" group at 25 yards, standing, unsupported. About 135 PF.

I was shooting a lighter load. 3.3 gr of Tightgroup. Recoil was soft but a bit too slow for my sights to return. I like the little bit more pop.

You need the chrono to measure velocity to ensure you make minor Power Factor.

Where you at? If you're near me would be happy to meet at the range and you can use my chrono.

Sent from my SM-G930F using Tapatalk
 

 

Thanks for the info and help! 

 

Man, to be honest I have no idea about PF and where to start with bullets and primers.  So thanks for the suggestion on where to start!   Any preferred stores to buy from?

 

Right now, I was naive and have a bunch of factory 115gr ammo that I need to shoot and save the brass.   I have mostly Blazer brass, Fiocchi, and S&B ammo.  Is there anything special I need to know about the different brand brass?  Also, how many times can you expect to reload a casing before they go bad?

 

I'm in Rancho Cucamonga.   I'm super newbie, but I'm trying to set myself up well before I start so once I get situated I can just go and go and get more addicted! 

 

Cheers, and I'm super appreciative of all the welcoming / helpful replies!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Any Small Pistol Primers (SPP) are fine - I use the cheapest I can locate - usually Russian made.

But, some guns will NOT ignite the hard Russian primers - work 100% in my TruBor, but only 50%

in my BHP.

 

Bullets - any coated or jacketed 9mm bullets are good - PD has good prices for jacketed - you

should try 124 gr and 147 gr and see which YOU prefer.

 

Blazer and Fiocchi brass = good;   S&B brass = bad.   I throw my S&B brass away.

You can reload the brass until it splits, cracks or the primer falls out.    :) 

 

Rather than using recipes, it's much better to use them as a starting point, and with the

aid of your new $79 chrono, you can fine tune your loads for Your Gun and Your

personal preference.

 

If you can join up with local gun club members - you can get some sane advice on how

to reload and shoot, all at the same time.    

 

Have fun.    :) 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A primer flip tray and extra primer tubes are an absolute must, if you plan to load a couple hundred or more at a time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you have a harbor freight in your area they make a tumbler that works just fine at about a 1/3 the price (use one of their 20% off coupons) of the Dillon one. The Dillon separator is one of the best, stick with that.

 

As someone said get more primer tubes, but skip the flip tray. Get a Frankford Arsenal Vibraprime. I just got one, and oh man. Wish I had bought this ten years ago!

 

As far as making one order goes...good luck!

 

I’ve been reloading for a decade and am still always buying and selling stuff...well mostly buying...refining and changing my process.

 

If you’re gonna take this plunge you might as well commit to yourself that you are heading down a black money hole of reloading joy, excitement, and often frustration.

 

You aren’t gonna save any money because you will shoot up every penny of savings. But I say this as a good thing. I would never shoot as much as I do or be as proficient as I am of I didn’t reload. There is no way.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...