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Reloading kits, which to choose?

glockmattglockmatt Member Posts: 129 ✭✭
Be kind, I did search for this topic first. I'm planning on getting into reloading. Pistol .38 spl and .40 S&W and .308 rifle. I see many kits on the market: Lyman, Lee, etc. Single stage or progressive? I do like the idea of the detachable plates so changing calibers is easy. Any advice


  • dcs shootersdcs shooters Member Posts: 10,969
    edited November -1
    It's hard to beat a Dillon 550, if you can afford them. For single stage Lee kits or RCBS are the way to go.
  • nononsensenononsense Member Posts: 10,934 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1

    That's a terrific decision to make considering that the prices of components and loaded ammunition are continuing to go up.

    I like the RCBS tools and their devotion to customer service. There isn't anything wrong with the others, I have just been treated great by the folks at RCBS.

    I suggest using a single stage press first until you get your sea legs under you and then move into a progressive for your pistol loading. There is no better choice than the Dillon presses as far as progressives are concerned.

  • BHAVINBHAVIN Member Posts: 3,490 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    Complete Ditto to what nononsense said.[;)]
  • jonkjonk Member Posts: 10,121
    edited November -1
    Agreed. Start with a single stage press to learn the ropes. I would recommend the Lee Anniversary kit. The Challenger O frame press contained therein isn't the greatest, but is fine for the pistol calibers and .308 rifle. Its one weak point is a pot metal linkage that will break after 2-3 years of use. On the other hand, Lee's classic cast press is a proverbial brick s***house that is, as I see it, the best single stage press out there- it just doesn't come in a kit. The RCBS Rockchucker is another excellant choice, but a bit more expensive.

    If you go progressive, my experience with Lee is less than sterling. I am suspicious of Dillon because their prices are so much higher than their competition- if I were in that market I'd look hard at progressive RCBS, Lyman, and Hornady machines.
  • OdawgpOdawgp Member Posts: 5,380 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    Check out these deals, good presses and some bullets to boot
  • glockmattglockmatt Member Posts: 129 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    thanks for all the advice.
  • leeblackmanleeblackman Member Posts: 5,683
    edited November -1
    I'd recommend getting a Dillon Square Deal B, and getting caliber conversions for .38spl and .40sw. Even if you buy one used and its broke, you can send it back and they fix it for free with their No B.S. lifetime warranty. Believe me, when you start having primer feed failures with any other brand, you'll wish you had the dillon.

    I'd also recommend getting a Lee challenger single stage press kit. They are like around $40, and will work just as good as anything more expensive. Then get you a set of .308win dies. And don't get caught up in all the fancy dancy uber expensive competition reloading dies, and super special this or super special that dies. Just get you a normal two die set with a full length sizing die, and use it for a while. Once you figure out if you really need (which you won't) anything specialty die, then get it.

    Also, you might wanna pickup a powder despensor and a scale. Get a lee "perfect" powder measure and a lee scale, and you'll do just as good as if you bought anything else.

    And another thing you might wanna get is a tumbler, media, media treatment (liquid polish you mix in the media) and a media seperator. Especially if you want them reloads to look real purdy like.

    For your .308win handloads, you will probably need to trim the brass, expecially if you plan on reloading it more than once (which you will). Lee makes a case trimmer that consist of a cutting tool and a base, then you get a guide and holder for .308win, and the whole thing costs less than like $10.
  • e3mrke3mrk Member Posts: 1,851 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    I have the Lee anniversary Kit and I think it is perfect for the beginner like Me. When I get more experience I will get better equipment
    but for now it's perfect for Me.
  • BHAVINBHAVIN Member Posts: 3,490 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    Glockmatt, if you decide to go progressive the Dillon Square Deal B won't load rifle ammo. The 550B would be the way to go.
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