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Are newbs at a disadvantage?

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by GioaJack, Jan 6, 2010.

  1. GioaJack

    GioaJack Conifer Jack

    Apr 14, 2009
    Conifer, CO
    The excellent thread on trolling and the related thread on 'I'm out of here' has does something very, very unusual... it got me to thinking.

    FEAR NOT, I'm sure this is just a passing fancy and am confident that it is not a harbinger of things to come.

    For those of us who remember legal pads and number 2 pencils the internet is still something that is a new fanged wonderment that is either loved, hated or just plain tolerated. For many of the newer loaders or total newbs it very well may be the way you've grown up doing research, be it for schooling, business or recreation.

    There is no denying that in some aspects it makes life easier, decreases time spent, miles driven and avails one to literally speak to someone of like, or unlike thinking on the other side of the world. These are all positive, and to me, amazing attributes of technology. I believe it's called progress.

    There is however, a downside... especially for the newb reloader. That downside is face to face, hands on learning.

    When I first started loading, back when Columbus was my next door neighbor and the earth was still flat, there were so many quality gun shops you couldn't swing a dead cat without hitting one and if for some reason you lived more than a few miles from a gun club you could always find a group of guys out in a field practicing the art of arms.

    Many, if not most of the gun shops had an extensive reloading section that catered to the all-around shooter. (No, reloading is not a recent phenomenon... not by a long shot. Lookie, lookie, I made a pun. Sorry.)

    Except for Brownells and one or two other mail order companies you simply went down to your favorite shop and picked what you wanted off the shelf. No shipping, no haz-mat, just dropped your money on the counter and scurried off with your new plunder.

    It didn't take many trips to a quality shop to realize that it was more than just a place to buy a pound of powder or a brick of primers... they were social clubs. Places where people of common interests gathered to exchange information, share a always on pot of coffee and learn from the veterans. It was a time when people like Elmer Keith, Bill Jordan, P.O. Ackley, McGivern and Hatcher were not just some old fogies lost to history but rather were the trail blazers of the shooting world.

    Didn't know what press would best suit your needs? Not to worry, many, many shops had display presses set up on loading benches and no where in sight was there a sign that said, 'Don't Touch'. (Dillon still does business this way... good for them. I haven't been to the Hornady factory so I don't know if they have machines set up to demo.)

    Wasn't sure how to load a particular caliber, or how to trim, crimp, cast, swage a pocket, ream a pocket or even how to use a primer flipper... didn't matter, there was always a group of grizzled old veteran loaders who were more than willing to show you how and then regale you with stories of how they single handedly beat the Huns.

    So, are newbie loaders at a disadvantage... from my perspective, yes... you miss out on the hands on learning experience, the tales of yore, the camaraderie that develops while listening in wonderment, and most of all, you miss out on those wonderful memories.

    Well, I guess you'll have memories of the porn you watch after you log of the GT forum. :whistling:

  2. dudel


    Dec 10, 2008
    Texas Hill Country

    Bravo! You bring tears to my old eyes. I think we old timers actually had an advantage without the internet. We developed loads socially or by trial and error. You learned the basics and grew your skills. You became proud of those skills, and shared them with others who then developed and passed them on.

    Good old days indeed.

    (I see my M3 optics showed up today. Time to go mount them on the AR!)

  3. Bob2223

    Bob2223 Jack's buddy!

    Mar 26, 2009
    Spencer Indiana
    I have to agree Sir

    "dang it" :upeyes:

    No it ain't the same but I'm still thankful for knowledge and experience that many here are willing to share.
    For me it would have been a long slow process learning to cast if not for the info on the web, and from good old Fred338.
    I do miss hanging out at the shops on Saturdays and listening to everyone trade notes.

    At least we still have some old fogies like you to tell us about the good old days.

  4. RLDS45S


    Jun 8, 2003
    Well, it all goes to the McDonald's mentality of the majority of people.
    They want it all and they want it now!

    Look at reality back not so long ago people actually read magazines like Rifle, Handloader, AR, AH, Precision Shooting. Now, we have people that falsely claim they do not have the time etc to do so they have to TROLL for loads. They do this with out a thought cause they are lazy! They have no clue that they need to work up a load that SAFE, RELIABLE, and ACCURATE in their guns, not going off of someone else's data. What the "what ifs" here demand being a prudent reloader.

    You got the people that think they know it all. Well, in fact no one does. And, the day they do is the day they better hang it up toot sweet.

    Strong opinions and abrasive posts......well, some times it is hard to make a point.

    You have newbee reloaders and Freak was one not so long ago.....pounding out his ammo on a Lee press. His business does not necessarily make him smarter then anyone else. We have some credible people posting great information.

    Others well they post pure drivel!

    Telling someone where to get reloading data is good info. And, well since so many are just plain cheap bastards that can not buy a few good reloading manuals, well that is simply sad and too bad.

    You look at some posts of people's reloading benches, I know that from looking you can see old powder cans, die boxes, and other things that date the owners.

    I have been reloading since I was 13 years young. I have loaded on Dillon stuff since the early 80's. Do I know it all, hell no. But, I am wise enough to know where to get a consult or dig out the information.

    Reloading is not rocket science, but some people seem to want to make it into such.

    Fact #1 it is easy to find what powder is a go to for a caliber and bullet wt range. Too many people seem to arrive at the same conclusion. So, being able to narrow a powder choice down is simple.

    Fact #2 if some posters have the time to cruise the internet they dam well sure have the time make up a series of test loads for a bullet.

    Fact #3 there are very few universal loads so to speak. Like 38 Special with 2.7gr of BE with a 148gr HBWC, 38grs of H380 with 55gr bullet in a 22.250. They are the EXCEPTION and not the rule. So, gtrolling for a load is STUPID!
    I would really laugh when some lazy reloader loaded up a large lot of ammo and then decided it did no shoot for fecal matter! Who they gonna blame then.

    Fact #4 If you do not do things right, you endanger yourself, your gun, and perhaps fellow shooters.....think about that one......:wavey:
  5. Colorado4Wheel


    Nov 2, 2006
    Newbie vs Old Guy as a newbie. Honestly, I think it depends on the person.
  6. fredj338


    Dec 22, 2004
    I agree & disagree Jack. The internet is agreat place ot do research, I wish it were available to me when I was doing all that trial & error stuff. It is NOT however a substitute for reading & getting hands on experience. I can learn more by doing than reading & asking questions is great, if you have enough knowledge to know what you are asking & how to decipher the info you have just been given.
    I've gone to several guys homes, met here on the forum, & helped them jump start their reloading hobby. It's so much easier doing the face to face & watch them, correct them & advise them.
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2010
  7. farley45


    Feb 23, 2009
    I'm just getting into reloading myself and it would be nice if I knew some people that reload. With firearms I am kind of doing my own thing in terms of the interests of the people that I am around most often, so I don't have many places to find face to face information. I just started reading some books and have been looking through the reloading forum and it helps quite a bit, but as you said face to face is always much better.

    I did stumble across a family owned gunshop in the city where my university is located. I have been stopping by more frequently, even when I don't have anything I intend to purchase or even consider. But, in that little shop the owner is always willing to bs about anything and there are always a few older men in there hanging out as well. It is a nice atmosphere and I wish there were more shops like this. They generally have a wealth of information waiting for those who will listen.
  8. Colorado4Wheel


    Nov 2, 2006
    I learn better doing it on my own and reading a manual. For instance. The 550 comes with a great manual. I read it the night before mine arrived, read it as I set it up. Learned a lot in the process. Hands on forced me to learn the details. People teaching you how to reload tend to focus on stuff quickly or in too much detail in a way that you may not connect with easily. Now, if the manual sucks, give me a person any day of the week. Reloading process is similiar. The stuff covered in Richards Lees book about Pressure is way better then anything I have ever talked to another reloader about. I may not even remember all of it but as I read it it's a WOW type of thing. I can't imagine anyone explaining it to me as well while in a store. Some people just need someone to show them. Some people don't. Forcing yourself to read a book and learn it is very rewarding if you put the energy in to actually do it.
  9. Colorado4Wheel


    Nov 2, 2006
    Yet, you don't have your City and State listed in your profile.
  10. gjk5

    gjk5 Pinche Gringo

    I see nothing wrong with running a load by other reloaders on a forum, I would never load a round based on internet info without confirming it in a manual or slowly working it up.

    I also don't see a problem with a new loader saying "I am using 5.6gr of Universal, 200gr .45ACP Berry's, CCI primer and Win case, how does that sound?". Doublechecking never hurt anyone.

    Going on a forum and scaring up a load and loading them up without confirmation is pretty stupid however.
  11. dudel


    Dec 10, 2008
    Texas Hill Country
    Nor do I. There's a big difference between "I am using 5.6gr of Universal, 200gr .45ACP Berry's, CCI primer and Win case, how does that sound?"


    "I need a 9mm load, what primer do I need?".

    The first person put some though/effort into the question; the second didn't. I'll tend to help the first; and ignore the second. But then, that's just me.

    Going to a forum to scare up a load, loading several hundred rounds of it, without confirmation, or even understanding what you're doing is not only pretty stupid, but dangerous to you (and possibly others).

  12. farley45


    Feb 23, 2009
    Yeah, I should put that.

    I bounce around (I'm in college but will be graduating in May and will finally be in one location).

    I go to school in Lincoln, NE and bounce between my parent's place in Bellevue, NE and my fiancee's parent's place outside of Murray,NE city limits on weekends and breaks.
  13. dudel


    Dec 10, 2008
    Texas Hill Country
    Take a quick trip to Grand Island. It's only about 30+ minutes from Lincoln. Visit the folks at Hornady. A very friendly bunch and a great resource. I miss my trips to Kearney and the visits to Cabelas and Hornady.

  14. D. Manley

    D. Manley

    May 30, 2005
    Southern US
    That's about it. When I started, it was a 40 minute drive to the only accessible place that sold any reloading supplies at all. Selection was limited to what was on hand...and if it wasn't on hand, you didn't know it existed so you couldn't ask for it. Apply this to tools, components, manuals and everything else and you get the picture. If you wanted to reload, you pretty much played with the hand you were dealt...the few mail-order houses (Herters, etc.) were a risky venture since all you had to go on were a picture and brief description of whatever they had to offer. Regardless of the caliber you loaded, you were limited to the bullet brands/styles on hand and don't even mention powder selection.

    The internet has changed everything and IMHO, most for the better. Anyone wanting to get into the reloading experience nowadays has unlimited access to a virtual library of free information as well as tons of on-line vendors to choose from. He can see virtually everything made by everyone in the business -and- read reviews from those actually using the equipment. The ability to make an informed decision is limited only by an individual's initiative. Do I wish I'd have had this kind of access when I started? You bet. Would it have made any real-world difference? Who knows, but I think it might have been more fun and fewer headaches.
  15. shotgunred

    shotgunred local trouble maker

    Mar 1, 2008
    Washington (the state)
    Well it certainly would have been nice t live in a Mayberry or a leave it to beaver type place. I started reloading before the internet in a one horse town. When I was interested in reloading I went to the one gun shop in town. The owner touted the virtues of the one press he carried. It was the absolute best and no need to look at anything else. Well he got my money and I got the press. When I went back the next week with questions he didn’t have the time of day for me. In the end I decided to spend my money in the gun shop in the next county. So I learned how to make the one round I was interested in and that was all I did for several years. Eventually I made bullets for two different calibers.
    I lost interest for several years. A couple of years ago I picked it back up. I have certainly learned more from the internet in the last couple of years than I did in the 20 years before. The internet is the new version of your old gun shop Jack. You certainly lose something in not being face to face. Having someone help me set up my press and getting it running right would have been nice. It certainly would have saved me some time and money. But learning from scratch certainly taught me the ins and outs of it. But there is a big up side also. I have never met the people who have had the most profound affect on my shooting and reloading. I probably never will. But that does not change the fact that my internet interactions have made me better at these hobbies.

    Is it an up side or downside? Yes both.
  16. Three-Five-Seven

    Three-Five-Seven Señor Mombo Millennium Member

    Aug 8, 1999
    Great Southwest
    Thinking and shooting are two different things.
  17. Camaraderie? At a gun shop? You've got to be kidding.
  18. farley45


    Feb 23, 2009
    I had no idea Hornady had an outfit in Grand Island. I may have to check it out, thanks.

    I do love that they put a Cabelas so close to me; I am an avid hunter.
  19. Wash-ar15


    Sep 15, 2007
    The internet is a great way to share info. Before it,you were at the mercy of the local guy and his mood. sometimes he liked you,sometimes not.

    Its just like fixing cars. before the net you had to know the local Guru and kiss his ass to get good info. or bring it to a shop and bend over sometimes.

    sharing info is a good thing. Like i tell my kids,knowledge is power.
  20. bush pilot

    bush pilot

    Jan 29, 2004
    The internet is a great resource for reloaders, especially when shops are closing down and people need components. I've loaded for 35 years and will find myself turning on the computer for powder suggestions for cartridges I have yet to load. If 10 guys say they have good luck with a certain powder it might be worth grabbing a pound on the way home from work and then cracking the manuals for specifics.