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Old 12-30-2010, 14:57   #1
Praetorian27
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A beginner here looking for experienced advice on a press

Hi guys,

I have been doing a lot of reading and researching before I start spending money on my reloading equipment. I have read equal info about the positives and negatives of single stage vs. progressive for a beginner. What do you guys think? From what I gather, the single stage is slower and more time consuming, but gives you more attention to detail to your steps. The progressive is quicker, but tougher to get setup smoothly and costs more. Would you guys say these are fairly accurate general assumptions? I am not a competitive shooter, looking to shoot tons of rounds...probably looking to reload and shoot around 200-300 rounds a month.
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Old 12-30-2010, 15:14   #2
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I started with a Lee single stage kit a few years ago and still use it. I like it because it allows me to inspect each step and was/is cost effective. I reload 40 S&W and just started 10mm last month.
I have no problem with the speed and will set for hours pumping out ammo. I have had no bad ammo produced to date and feel it suites me well.
Reloading has become an interesting hobby for me and I find I like it almost as much as shooting.
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Old 12-30-2010, 15:24   #3
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I started on a Lee Breech-lock Challenger Press Kit. .40 and .38sp. Perfect for beginners but now I think I could have been ok with the classic turret press. My single stage is now my rifle round only setup. Can't beat em for that purpose. You should be fine with the single stage initially and you can always use it later.
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Old 12-30-2010, 15:34   #4
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For low volume work, the single stage press will do fine.

I recommend newbies start w/a single stage until they get a feel for what's going on and more importantly, what can go wrong.

Reloading is a relatively simple process but you've got to pay attention to details.

There are many good presses on the market. It's difficult to make a bad decision when buying a press IMHO.

Good luck!
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Old 12-30-2010, 15:37   #5
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Thanks guys! I think I am going to go with single stage to learn. The price for error in this aspect of firearms is too great to cut corners. Do you recommend getting one of the all inclusive kits? If so, which would you recommend for a guy on a budget?
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Old 12-30-2010, 15:47   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Praetorian27 View Post
Thanks guys! I think I am going to go with single stage to learn. The price for error in this aspect of firearms is too great to cut corners. Do you recommend getting one of the all inclusive kits? If so, which would you recommend for a guy on a budget?
If you're starting from scratch, I guess they're not a bad way to go. You may get one or two items you don't need but overall, I think you'll do OK.

I'm a big fan of Redding products, but it's been so long since I've to buy any "big iron" I wouldn't even know what prices are like now.

You won't need a monster, massive press for straight wall pistol cases. A lightweight AL frame press will serve you well although for long term durability, an iron frame press is the better buy.
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Old 12-30-2010, 16:12   #7
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150th Anniversary Kit from Lee. All needed after is a MTM digi scale, a bullet puller, and your components. I have some extra die bushings if you wanna buy em for another caliber later on. I have 4 extras.
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Old 12-30-2010, 18:11   #8
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I started out with a RCBS Rockchucker Jr. If I'm not mistaken, they usually come with one set of dies bundled in.
Once you've got that, you need a powder thrower, a scale, a set of calipers and a reloading manual.
I do agree with the idea that a single stage press let's you start out slow. There is a lot going on with a progressive press and I occassionally catch my self looking like that re-run of I Love Lucy where she was working next to a conveyor belt in a factory.
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Old 12-31-2010, 01:17   #9
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Hey Prae, as I mentioned in your other thread I started out with the RCBS Rock Chucker Supreme kit and still use it. I shoot around 700 rounds a month but then again I don't work. The only other items you would need of course would be dies, shell holder, a good dial caliper and of course components.

I don't think you could go wrong with the RCBS, Hornady or the Redding press kits. They are built like battleships. I don't have experience with the Lee or Lyman so I will not comment on them.
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Old 12-31-2010, 08:40   #10
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Thanks guys! I'll let you know when I get a setup. I am sure I'll be needing more advice at that time!
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Old 12-31-2010, 09:10   #11
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I may be the only one here to say this, but if you can get the money together, get a progressive. You can always treat a progressive as a single stage at first (i.e. only using one die in the turret at a time) while getting seasoned at reloading. You can't make a single stage into a progressive. To me it is worth it to have a press that will grow with your interest in the hobby. I have a Dillon and wouldn't trade it. Everything has a lifetime warranty. For $650, you can have a reloading system that will last a lifetime and you'll never outgrow.
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Old 12-31-2010, 10:58   #12
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i have a hornady lock n load single stage press which im pretty happy with. i keep thinking about progressives but i dont really do a lot of volume shooting of one or two cartriges so i dont need to load 500 rounds in an hour. plus the cost of a toolhead conversion for 8 different cartriges would be expensive. besides im not in any hurry, its actually turned into its own hobby.
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Old 12-31-2010, 12:26   #13
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Thank you for making this thread. You pretty much asked all the questions I've been meaning to ask here.

I'm wondering, though, would this be a good kit to start with?
http://www.midwayusa.com/viewproduct...tnumber=423081
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Old 12-31-2010, 14:31   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crsuribe View Post
Thank you for making this thread. You pretty much asked all the questions I've been meaning to ask here.

I'm wondering, though, would this be a good kit to start with?
http://www.midwayusa.com/viewproduct...tnumber=423081
Wow...that's a lot cheaper than the RCBS kit. I wonder what the main differences are, and what kit needs more add-ons to be complete.
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Old 12-31-2010, 14:51   #15
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A press, a scale and a powder thrower for $91.
That sounds hard to beat. I paid that much for a Rock Chucker Junior (minus dies) in the 1980s.
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Old 12-31-2010, 15:20   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MinervaDoe View Post
A press, a scale and a powder thrower for $91.
That sounds hard to beat. I paid that much for a Rock Chucker Junior (minus dies) in the 1980s.
That kit comes with the press right?
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Old 12-31-2010, 15:40   #17
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Originally Posted by Praetorian27 View Post
That kit comes with the press right?
The Lee Challenger Breech Lock Single Stage Press Anniversary Kit?


That's what the description led me to believe.

Then, I believe that all you would need would be a dial caliper and dies.


+ powder, bullets, primers, manuals ...

spending money to save money - it sounds carzy doesn't it ...
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Old 12-31-2010, 16:06   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MinervaDoe View Post
The Lee Challenger Breech Lock Single Stage Press Anniversary Kit?


That's what the description led me to believe.

Then, I believe that all you would need would be a dial caliper and dies.


+ powder, bullets, primers, manuals ...

spending money to save money - it sounds carzy doesn't it ...
Ok,then i am confused by your other post...I was wondering what else you would need, and you posted a "press" amongst a couple other things.

edit - nevermind...I'm an idiot! I understand what you were saying.
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Last edited by Praetorian27; 12-31-2010 at 16:07..
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Old 01-01-2011, 00:48   #19
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While there's nothing wrong with a progressive press (love my Dillon blue), for a new reloader, I strongly recommend starting out with a single-stage.

After selling my old Rock-Chucker to a friend who was starting out, I looked around at single-stages, and I really like the Lee Classic Cast. It has an adjustable and reversible handle, big enough window for 50-cal. (if you ever get one...), plenty strong enough, through-ram spent-primer catcher, and two-piece ram with removable head which gives all kinds of interesting flexibility (like swaging jacketed bullets). It's around $70 or $80 IIRC, and I think there's a kit available, based on the Classic Cast.
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Old 01-01-2011, 01:45   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Praetorian27 View Post
edit - nevermind...I'm an idiot! I understand what you were saying.
Happens to me all the time.
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