Questions??

1_pointer

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I was at the local sporting goods store shopping for the things that I need to get into reloading (Murph was nice enough to gove me most things). I was looking at the single stage press and all they carry are RCBS presses. THe price on the AmmoMaster press was about what I could spend but the salesperson said that it would not be able to load the .338 Win Mag and suggested that I buy the RockChucker which is about $60 more expensive.

When I got home I checked on the RCBS website and they said that the AmmoMaster is capable of loading everything up to 50BMG!!!! Now I understand that the Rochchucker is probably a better press, but was this guy just trying to make more commision or trying to help me??

BTW, the prices at this store are cheaper than the ones quoted on the RCBS website?? I found that pleasing, but odd.

Also, I was wondering what powder you guys suggest I start out with? I kinda have an idea of what bullets I am gonna go with(Nosler's), but the powder choices have me stumped.

<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ 18 August 2001 17:24: Message edited by: 1_pointer ]</font>
 

BW

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1 pointer,

That's too bad about the salesman. But, the RockChucker is a fine press anyhow, and unless you intend to load for the BMG, you'll have no problems with it.

Since you already know which bullet you intend to work with, in this case Nosler, then I suggest you buy their manual. If on the other hand, your not sure, it's nice to get a manual from a powder manafacture, or other "neutral" source. "Pet Loads" by Ken Waters, the Lee Manual, and Hodgdon's manual are sources which list several powders for a "generic" bullet. Well, Ken Waters list the bullets, but he uses many different kinds. I'm sure you'll be buying several manuals in the future, as most reloaders like to check out several sources.

Nosler #4 Reloading Manual lists which powder they found most accurate for each weight of bullet Nosler offers. In 338 Win Mag, the list is as follows...

200gr Ballistic Tips AA3100
210gr Partition AA3100
225gr Partition RL19
250gr Partition H4831

For most normal bullets, like Speer, Hornady, Seirra, etc., the same load data can be used. Sure there are small differences, like the bearing surfaces due to slightly different designs. But basically they're the same. If your not pushing the ragged edge pressure wise, you'll be fine.

Partitions, due to the partition, can cause sligtly higher pressures. I would think that Swift A-Frames are the same? Barnes X bullets are truly a different animal, and I would suggest you use Barnes load data only. I'm sure some of the data overlaps with regular bullet data, but it's better to be safe than sorry.

Hope that helps?
 

A-con

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For powders, I'm haveing good luck with IMR 4350.
For presses & other equ. check into Midway,
on the web at www.midwayusa.com, they have very good prices. Another good place to look is "Dillion" They make and sell there own presses & equ. all top quality, with the best warrentie in the buisness.
By the way, midway shows the rockchucker less expensive that the ammo master
 

danr55

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1 POinter, I don't know where you are shopping, but call the cops. You are getting robbed. I am not familiar with the town in Utah you live in, but if it is anywhere near SLC, Logan, St. George, or any city with a major gun show, go looking there. You can usually buy a used Rockchucker in really good shape for less than $50.00. There is one guy that makes the Cross Roads of the West circuit that had 5 of them at the last show in Phoenix. He was asking between $45.00 and $70.00 a piece. The $70.00 press didn't look like it had been used at all. I have one in my inside loading room that I paid $20.00 for at a gunshow. The only thing I am leary about buying at shows is loading dies. Sometimes you get size dies that have been used by guys that size brass before cleaning it. These get scratched and worn quite quickly. Hang tough and wait for the next gunshow. :cool:
 

1_pointer

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Dan, just to let you know, I live between SLC and Logan. WIfe works in SLC and I go to school in Logan. About 40 miles each way. Just to let you know. BTW, there was a gun show in Ogden this weekend, but since we just moved our bank account is suffering from the lag between paychecks. I will keep that in mind, thanks!!!
 

Fatman

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1_Pointer

One thing I have found from manufacturer's websites is that most of the time the prices quoted are true retail plus some. I think this is done to keep out of competition with their dealers. You should almost always be able to beat their prices by shopping around a little bit. The RCBS presess are fine presses and will load as good as any. I have 4 presses made by Lyman, RCBS, and CH, they are all capable of loading quality rounds if you take your time and learn how to use them. The Nosler manual that BW mentioned is a very good manual if you load Nosler, another one I would recommend is the Lyman reloading maqnual. It also goes into bullet casting and some other areas that aren't covered by others. You can also download manuals from most of the powder companies websites for free, they do not go into as much depth as the ones you buy but they can be helpful.
 

danr55

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I Pointer, I know they have atleast 4 BIG gunshows a year in SLC and a couple in Logan. I would postpone buying a press until I had a chance to wander a couple of those shows. You may just save yourself some big bucks. The only thing I would caution about is buying used die sets. Sometimes they are used beyond recovery.
:cool:
 

danr55

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1 Pointer, I did a gun show over the weekend and looked into reloading equipment. It has gone up a little since I last looked, but not that much. I talked with a guy that has an RCBS press, powder scale, case trimmer, powder thrower, and various case holders and odds and ends he will sell for $140. That's everything you need except a powder trickler, powder funnel, and new rifle. the powder trickler and the funnel will cost about $15.00. Other than that, you would be set. That's a lot less that $125 for just a press. If you are still looking, let me know and I'll put you in touch with him. :cool:
 

1_pointer

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Thanks for the info Dan! I'll have to get with the wife, she keeps the checkbook, but this is exactly the kinda thing I was looking for. By the way, is a powder scale necessary if I have a powder measurer? What is a powder trickler? Again, thanks for looking out for me and please do give me his info and I'll get with the wife.

I already have a primer tool, primer tray, case trimmer, powder measurer, and have a mouth chamfer tool on the way so this should finish me out. Thanks again.
 

Chambo

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I know the answer to the trickler question!!!!

Some powders do not measure very well when charging the cases.

A trickler is a small funnel looking device with a hollow tube that runs through it with an opening that allows powder to enter the tube. the tube often has spiraling in it not unlike threads that disperse powder out of the end of the tube when it is rotated.
it is possible to add a grain at a time if you wish to get accurate and exact powder measurements in each round.

I use to use an empty case like for a 30- o6 to top off loads that were under metered.

they are not a ahve to have kind of thing unless you are into shooting bullet hole groups, it is a step up from using a case like i use to do.

Some powders just do not drop well and any oil or lube in the wrong place can and will cause powder charging problems.

one round may be short then the next may be over.

In a magnum due to the large volume of powder they contain, a small amount either way will for the most part go un-noticed.
The percentage of difference will be small.

I always liked weighing all my hunting loads .

It does make a difference, but depends on the powder you use and the equipment you are using. mostly, how perticular you want to be.


There are a lot of must haves in reloading but a trickler isn't one of them. Maybe later.
 

danr55

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Ya. What Chambo said. You have a powder measure, but without a scale, how do you set the charge wieght? I hope you don't plan on the old, "Well, that looks like enough powder", method.
1 Pointer, something else you should investigate is a good reloading manual with "How To" instructions in the front. Most of the ammo that I load is at or a little over max. In that case, .2 grains too much can be hazardous. I weigh every single load for every single round of rifle ammunition. It not only helps with accuracy, but it insures that I won't blow up something not intended to be blown up. The idea of loading without a powder scale is scarey as hell. :cool:
 

1_pointer

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Thanks for the advice. MLM was generous enough to give me an RCBS powder measurer and a Speer reloading manual. I have read the 'How-To' section twice now, so I feel I have the basics. They did suggest you should weigh about every fifth load that the measurer throws to make sure that it didn't move. I was just wondering if this was needed or that they were doing it to cover their butts. The measurer that he gave me allows for measurements based on volume, but I can see where measuring by weight could be more accurate. Thanks again for the tips.
 

WDSWIFT

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1pointer, not to be repeatative or anything, but I'm with danr in that I haven't reloaded a single rifle case in the last 25 years that I haven't weighed the powder before I dumped it in the case. A good scale and powder trickler are a must for me. If some powder gets hung up in the drop tube on one and then drops with the next, it could be an unsafe condition. WD
 

danr55

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I didn't mean to sound stiff in that last post, but some of the stuff you are talking is scarey. We don't have anywhere near enough members around here to loose any and be OK with it. I was just trying to be sure you were safe.

The issue with powder measures is that they are mechanical devices. They will fail to operate correctly regardless of what you do. In this hobby, it only takes one "Aw Sh1t" to spoil the rest of your life. Extruded powder WILL jam and WILL NOT measure evenly within less that about .3 grains. It is not the fault of the measure, but the nature of the powder. Most of us load rifle cases with extruded powders. If you use exclusively ball or drop ball powders, then you may be able to get by. I still wouldn't risk it.

To prove the point. Fill you powder measure with any of the IMR 43** series powders. Weigh a charge at what ever your measure is set for. Record the weight of powder. Then dump the powder back in another container. Repeat this for 100 pulls. Then figure the extreme deviations ( the highest weight and the lowest weight), the average deviation (calculate the difference between 1 and 2, 2 and 3, etc. add them together and divide by 99). Now if you can tolerate what ever load you are building plus the highest difference and minus the lowest difference without effect, then you are very lucky. I did this a couple of times and have seen as much as 1/2 grain variance and over 1 grain from high to low.
As I stated before, I tend to load to the extreme or maybe even just a little over. Depending on the powder you are using, and the cartridge you are loading, 1/2 grain over max could be fatal. :cool:
 

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