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Old 01-17-2010, 19:34   #1
stormbind
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Did I miss anything?

I just placed an order for my first reloading press. I just want to make sure that I got everything that I will need. So, other than primers, powder, and brass, did I forget anything that I will need? Here is my list:

-Lee Challenger Breech Lock Single Stage Press Anniversary Kit
-Hornady "Handbook of Cartridge Reloading: 7th Edition" Reloading Manual
-Lee "Modern Reloading 2nd Edition" Reloading Manual
-Lyman Universal Reloading Tray 50-Round Plastic Clear-Smoke
-Lee Carbide 3-Die Set 45 ACP
-Hornady Bullets 45 Caliber (451 Diameter) 200 Grain Combat Target Semi-Wadcutter Box of 100 (Bulk Packaged)
-Lee Case Length Gage and Shellholder 45 ACP

Also should I get the factory crimp die?
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Old 01-17-2010, 19:48   #2
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Originally Posted by stormbind View Post

Also should I get the factory crimp die?



MY GOD, don't let C4W, (Steve) know you didn't order a FCD! We'll never hear the end of it!

He has said hundreds, nay, thousands of times that a loading room without a FCD isn't a loading room... it's just a storage room for a bunch of useless stuff.

He's even gone so far as to say that everyone should own two for each caliber just in case burglars steal your primary set.

Boy I wouldn't want to be you when C4W gets wind of this loading faux pas.

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Old 01-17-2010, 20:12   #3
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I don't know if the seat die on that 3 die set does taper crimp. I would assume not? I have Lee factory crimp dies but for 45 prefer just a taper crimp die. The LFC has a sleeve inside that floats and sometimes, for me anyway especially with newer casings it sticks to the case. The LFC die for me helps with smaller stuff like 380 where you tend to have some abnormalities in the cases. For 45 you might want a taper crimp die.
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Old 01-17-2010, 20:27   #4
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Stormbind, you did not indicate that you are obtaining or already have a caliper. Get one - whether it be an inexpensive digital from Harbor Freight (often on sale for appx $15) or an expensive one from who knows where. You need to be able to determine the bullet seating depth of your reloads.

As to the Lee FCD - there's a LOT of debate on whether it is needed. I personally like the assurance that the die provides, although if you set your dies up properly there really shouldn't be any need for it. It does give you the ability to seat your bullet and crimp (taper crimp only for the 45acp!) in two separate functions. That concept has a lot of merit.

Welcome to reloading!
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Old 01-17-2010, 20:37   #5
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Ok so I am going to be placing another order and will include the LFC die. I do have a good set of calipers so no worries there. Is there anything else I should add this order?
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Old 01-17-2010, 21:18   #6
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Originally Posted by stormbind View Post
Ok so I am going to be placing another order and will include the LFC die. I do have a good set of calipers so no worries there. Is there anything else I should add this order?

You dont really need the FCD

Around here the FCD debate just opens a,,
Reloading

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Old 01-17-2010, 21:27   #7
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Powder
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Old 01-17-2010, 21:32   #8
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digital scale. primer flip tray
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Old 01-17-2010, 22:54   #9
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Originally Posted by PCJim View Post
Stormbind, you did not indicate that you are obtaining or already have a caliper. Get one - whether it be an inexpensive digital from Harbor Freight (often on sale for appx $15) or an expensive one from who knows where. You need to be able to determine the bullet seating depth of your reloads.

As to the Lee FCD - there's a LOT of debate on whether it is needed. I personally like the assurance that the die provides, although if you set your dies up properly there really shouldn't be any need for it. It does give you the ability to seat your bullet and crimp (taper crimp only for the 45acp!) in two separate functions. That concept has a lot of merit.
Having done "crimping" (which, on an auto pistol case means removal of the flare) with the FCD, a separate crimp-only die, and the bullet seating die, I actually question the merit of crimping in a separate step.

Think about it: the reason you'd want to crimp separately is to ensure that the bullet isn't still in the process of being seated when the crimp occurs, because if it is then the crimp will force the case wall into the bullet and will therefore score the bullet since the bullet is still being pressed into place.

But if you're just removing the flare, that's not an issue at all: the proper crimp will have the case wall just barely missing the side of the bullet.


If the Lee .45 dies are anything like their 9mm and .40 dies, the seating die will also crimp (which means, here, removing the flare). This has worked out just fine for me in 9mm. I do a separate crimp step in .40 since I have the station for it on my Dillon 650 and I may as well do something there (I don't use the FCD for that because .40 S&W is possibly the most dimensionally critical pistol cartridge to reload for and is not tapered -- and I want to maintain the maximum amount of case tension on the bullet I can get to prevent setback).
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Old 01-18-2010, 00:29   #10
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This will come in handy. Works great if you boo boo.
http://www.midwayusa.com/viewproduct...tnumber=851547
Don't forget the collet for your caliber.
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Old 01-18-2010, 08:04   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stormbind View Post
...............

Also should I get the factory crimp die?
Sure.

As long as you use it with .451 45acp bullets it will work as good as any other taper crimp.
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Old 01-18-2010, 08:30   #12
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Since you are loading on a single stage press a couple of these well help out.
http://www.midwayusa.com/viewproduct...tnumber=368157

Personally I would get a different good powder scale.
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Old 01-18-2010, 09:00   #13
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Originally Posted by BK63 View Post
I don't know if the seat die on that 3 die set does taper crimp. I would assume not? I have Lee factory crimp dies but for 45 prefer just a taper crimp die. The LFC has a sleeve inside that floats and sometimes, for me anyway especially with newer casings it sticks to the case. The LFC die for me helps with smaller stuff like 380 where you tend to have some abnormalities in the cases. For 45 you might want a taper crimp die.
The seating die from Lee has a Roll Crimp built into it. Just like most seating dies. If you do like most people here and just use the die to remove the bell then both the Taper Crimp die and Roll crimp die do exactly the same thing. It's once you go past the point of removing the bell into the range of a actual crimp that the roll crimp and taper crimp are going to behave very different. I say use what you got on the single stage. If you decide to use a Taper Crimp (or heaven forbid the Lee FCD) you add a step and on a single stage thats a lot of extra effort for no real gain. Set the seat/crimp die up right. I'm sure Gio can help you with that one. I use a taper crimp die. It's on a progressive so it adds no extra steps.
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Old 01-18-2010, 09:22   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snair View Post
digital scale. primer flip tray
He won't eed a flip tray on the Lee... The Lee primer feed orients the primers properly just like a flip try would.

I absolutely agree on the scale. The Lee beam scale isn't something I'd recommend. I used one about twice before it went in the trash.

If you don't wanna spring for a digital scale, an RCBS or Dillon beam scale will be fine.

IGF
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Old 01-18-2010, 09:35   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robin303 View Post
This will come in handy. Works great if you boo boo.
http://www.midwayusa.com/viewproduct...tnumber=851547
Ok picked one of those up.

Quote:
Originally Posted by robin303 View Post
Don't forget the collet for your caliber.
Thought that I had that. Maybe I am not sure what you are talking about.

Quote:
Originally Posted by unclebob View Post
Since you are loading on a single stage press a couple of these well help out.
http://www.midwayusa.com/viewproduct...tnumber=368157
Got one of these too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by unclebob View Post
Personally I would get a different good powder scale.
Quote:
Originally Posted by IndyGunFreak View Post
I absolutely agree on the scale. The Lee beam scale isn't something I'd recommend. I used one about twice before it went in the trash.
Scale?! What do I even need one of those for? I was not gonna use it anyway........
Ok, so I will look into an alternative scale. What would be the disadvantages of the Lee scale?

Thanks everyone for your replies! I'll check back later before I place my second order.
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Old 01-18-2010, 09:50   #16
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I would have at least two of the loading block trays. Like when adding powder you take the case out of one tray add the powder and put it in the other tray.
To put it very simply the Lee scale is just plain POS.
Get a kinetic bullet puller. Cheaper and a lot simpler.
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Old 01-18-2010, 11:22   #17
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Right now I am going to have to use the Lee scale that comes with the kit. At least for a little while. I have decided that I am not going to get the Lee FCD for now. If I see a need for it in the future I will pick one up. So...is there anything else that I should get?
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Old 01-18-2010, 11:32   #18
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Loading on a single stage I would not get the FCD, I would crimp in the seating die. Like others said you really don't need to crimp you just need to get rid of the flair the expander die put in, maybe a hair more. Also forget the case length gage and shell holder, you don't need to trim 45 auto brass. Welcome to reloading.
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Old 01-18-2010, 12:54   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stormbind View Post
Lee Case Length Gage and Shellholder 45 ACP]?
Get the Dillon Case Gauge. It's not the same as a Case Length Gauge from lee. It's stainless and will never rust. It helps for setup and trouble shooting. Order it from Dillon Directly and get the Blue Press free every month. I don't see dial calipers on your list. Harbour Frieght has several. I like my digitals ones just fine.
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Old 01-18-2010, 13:04   #20
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Colorado,

Thanks for the heads-up. I already have a set of calipers though.

RustyFN,

I thought that the Lee Case Length Gage and Shellholder was required for the operation of the press. Doesn't the shell holder sit inside the ram and is unique for each caliber?
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