What Reloading Equipment Is Needed?


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How about this question.......

I'm looking to get into reloading, and my father-in-law listed a bunch of stuff I'd need, besides just the reloader & dies.

If I'm going to start reloading myself, what is the equipment I'd need?

DrDavidM created a good Basic steps of reloading thread that give a lot of info.
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Of course you need your reloading press, dies and shell holder. A powder scale and I recommend a powder dispenser/thrower. Powder, primers, bullets and a reloading tray comes in handy.. Case lube and pad for non carbide dies. Some way to clean the brass especially to get the lube from inside the brass. Most of us use a tumbler or vibrating cleaner. I have used Acetone to make sure no trace of lube was on or in the brass. Use it only outside though. An inexpensive caliper to check overall length of the round after reloading. Someone else can chime in if I've missed anything.
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Someone else can chime in if I've missed anything.
A workbench would come in handy but I have read about one guy that bolted his press to a 2x6 and just clamped it to whatever was convenient. I considered that for about a one-tenth of a nanosecond, then decided on a workbench. When I finish getting set up, and if my ammo is satisfoctory, I'll post pix.

You wull need a case trimmer and a micrometer also if you are going to reload rifle cartridges. If the cases get too long it will cause dangerous pressures, and all rifle cases gain length with each resizing.
A copy of the NRA guide to reloading, a means of: weighing powder to 1/10 grain; decapping (removing the spent primers from boxer primed cases); resizing cases (recommend carbide die for pistol calibers); seating bullet to proper depth (seating die); crimping case to bullet (crimp die); verifying OAL (over all length) and diameter of finished cartridge; and a method of storing components and finished cartridges safely.

What you use to meet these goals can be as simple as a hand press, copper or steel tubes of the appropriate finished cartridge diameter, a beam balance scale, and a couple of lockable boxes or as complex as a reloading room with electronic scales, dial calipers and comparators, and progressive presses. The prior advice regarding rifle calibers requiring periodic trimming is accurate and you will need a means of lubricating any necked case to reduce wear on your dies (and preventing jamming a case in a die).

Find a local mentor to help and most any gun club. It is worth the price of membership for all the errors in the learning process you will avoid.

A couple of safety notes: Do not rush your build of cartridges (no distractions either); ONLY place one powder on your bench at any one time; ONLY place one primer type on your bench an any one time; ONLY reload one caliber at any one time. Have lots of fun recycling!

---One additional note: if you elect the hand press route, do NOT bolt it to a 2 x 6 or a bench. (LOL)
What do you wish to reload and at what volume.
Then we could come up with a need to have list and a nice to have list.
Most people confuse what they like with what they NEED.
1) ABCs of reloading and read it
2) At least two manuals and read them.
3) For straight wall pistol cartridges:
reloading press (the little $25 Lee Reloading Press makes find ammunition, just doesn't have massive leverage as larger presses)
$10 Lee RamPrime
Lee 3-die die set and Lee taper crimp die
Powder, bullets, and primers
Powder scale
Powder funnel to add powder from scale to case
6" caliper is nice to have
Powder measure is nice to have. Lee Pro Auto-Disk in nice
For bottleneck rifle cartridges:
Add a case trimmer--see Lee
Larger powder measure is nice to have, though many simply weigh every round and don't even use a powder measure
That is what you NEED.
Reload for a while and learn what else you want.

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