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economics of reloading

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by michael88, Nov 9, 2010.

  1. michael88

    michael88

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    so i am about to purchase an ak 47. i started a thread earlier and indy has me thinking about reloading now, as i didnt think it was smart/possible in a small apartment. i looked at some of the stickys in this portion of the forum as to what all i would need to get started. it seems like to get started its goign to take several hundreds of dollars. my question is 7.62 x 39 is going for under .20 a round online, how much, on average do you think you can make them for? i am trying to justify the purchase of the equipment to myself. basically is it a hobby, or does it really save you a lot of money.
     
  2. ron59

    ron59 Bustin Caps

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    It's definitely money saving.

    Currently, I'm only loading for 9mm, which isn't considered to be one of the more "cost savings" calibers. But... I can load 1000 9mm for around $140 or so.
    Try buying 9mm for that price at Walmart. WWB is $23.xx per 100 so close to $250 per 1000. You can get FC for $10.xx per 50, so it's $210 or so. Also, you have to take into consideration that my price is for loading 147gr bullets, it would be much cheaper if I loaded the comparable 115gr bullets.

    For calibers like .45ACP or .40? The savings is MUCH better. However... I can't speak for rifle cartridges such as you're asking. But I would imagine it would be cheaper.

    Yes... it can cost quite a bit to get "into" reloading. Heck, it's not even cheap once you have the press, because you have to buy the components IN BULK to get the savings. I'm talking about buying 10,000 primers at a time... 8 pounds of powder at a time. If you're not willing to lay out $400 or $500 in component purchases... reloading might not be the best way to go.

    But if you're a shooter... it's the ONLY way to go.
     


  3. IndyGunFreak

    IndyGunFreak

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    http://glocktalk.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1267966

    Read that thread, it's not really the subject of the thread, but it turned the direction of cost....

    Look at post #62... I used a pretty common calculator, to calculate my costs for 9mm. I usually run right around $115 for a case of 9mm.

    I don't load rifle, but I can only imagine similar savings could be found.
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2010
  4. fredj338

    fredj338

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    You probably aren't going to beat cheap Russina 7.62 ammo by much reloading it, especially since boxer primed 7.62x39 brass isn't cheaply available like 223. Still reloading can save you some & if you branch out to other calibers, 50% savings over cheap Russian crap is worth it. I have reloaded in some pretty small spaces. In college, I had a setup in a 3x3 coat closet in my apt. You don't need much room.
     
  5. El_Ron1

    El_Ron1 AAAAAAAAGHHH!!!

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    For 20 years, it has not been cost effective for me to reload 7.63x39 due to component cost and availability vs. imported ammunition costs. If that's the only caliber you intend to reload, I'd pass.
     
  6. shotgunred

    shotgunred local trouble maker

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    I reload every caliber I shoot except 7.62 x 39. I can buy it cheaper than I can reload it. Just buy it by the case.
     
  7. dudel

    dudel

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    For everything but shotshell and 7.62, you can save money reloading. Shotshells are cheap at Walmart, and 7.62 is the cheapest round available. If that's all you plan to reload; I'd recommend a pass.
     
  8. XDRoX

    XDRoX

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    Same here. And 22lr. Oh, and 8x56mm, but I do plan on reloading this some day. It's very expensive.
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2010
  9. robin303

    robin303 Helicopter Nut

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  10. MinervaDoe

    MinervaDoe

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    I set up a spreadsheet to do the same thing, but the web page you posted has has a great WOW factor.
    http://www.handloads.com/calc/loadingCosts.asp

    Thanks for posting that link.
    So, you are loading 9mm for 11.5 cents a round.
     
  11. IndyGunFreak

    IndyGunFreak

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    Roughly.... I think it's actually a bit less than that.

    It'd be considerably cheaper if I cast my own bullets, but I'm pretty happy w/ Precision Delta. I typically don't screw up what works.
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2010
  12. fredj338

    fredj338

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    I can do 9mm for just over 10c/rd w/ 115grFMJ from PD.:supergrin: Used to be below when they were $67/1000. Certainly lead bullets are cheaper & casting your own gets you down near 22lr costs. As always, this assumes yo ubuy in some kind of bulk.
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2010
  13. MinervaDoe

    MinervaDoe

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    PD?

    I need to plug some 9mm numbers into my spreadsheet. It's setup for 10mm right now.
     
  14. IndyGunFreak

    IndyGunFreak

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    Precision Delta...

    http://www.precisiondelta.com
     
  15. Yikes, what? No. More like $200. Someone tell you to start with a Dillon?
     
  16. michael88

    michael88

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    chris,
    today is the first time ive ventured into this sub forum. i read the stickys and it seems as if you need tumblers and all other sorts of contraptions that would start adding up very quick. if all you need is a press please let me know that i am wrong.
     
  17. fredj338

    fredj338

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    Well you don't need a tumbler but you do need a little bit more than just a press. Look at the sticky on reloading, but a min:
    Single stage press
    dies & shell holder for each caliber
    good powder scale
    calipers
    loading block (to hold rounds)
    powder funnel (to get the powder in the cases)
    If the press doesn't have a priming arm, you need a hand priming unit to get the new primers in
    (2) reloading manuals
    powder, bullets & primers

    That is the min to get started making ammo IMO. There are things like the Lee hand press, not unless you like to work long hours at it. Pretty tough to do it for much less than $200 bucks for new gear with any quality. A good scale is $50, Lee CC @ $80, dies @ $30, little things, right @ $200 for one caliber. For rifles, eventually yo uneed to trim cases & you can certainly just wipe them off w/ a damp cloth prior to loading them. They won't be shiney, but they will be clean.:dunno:
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2010
  18. shotgunred

    shotgunred local trouble maker

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    Washington (the state)
    It does add up quickly. Even with a lee classic turret with lee dies, an ok scale, 2K bullets, 1K primers and a pound of powder you are well over $300.
    How much do you shoot? My press payed for itself in less than six months. But it all comes down to having some extra cash and taking an honest look at how much you shoot every month.

    Answer these questions and we can give you a better response.
    What do you shoot?
    How much you shoot every month?
    What is your comfortable budget?
     
  19. PCJim

    PCJim Senior Member

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    I think many shooters who consider reloading do so primarily from an economics point of view. And I suppose many of us old timers probably did so also when we first considered the venture.

    A newcomer really should look at reloading more as a true hobby, similar to fishing, RC cars or boats, model rocketry, etc. The hobby is enjoyable in itself, and very rewarding as a regular shooting enthusiast. It is definitely NOT just about simple cost savings.
     
  20. ron59

    ron59 Bustin Caps

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    I agree, and also think where many focus is on "startup costs". They don't realize how expensive it can be just to buy components to actually *realize* the cost savings.

    For me... I can't buy components locally that will make reloading cost effective. And the only way to really see the true savings is to buy in BULK, and that's not cheap. For example, while I can buy bullets 1000 at a time... I'd be paying WAY more more bullet than if I buy them 3000 at a time. So that alone goes from $122 (for the 1000), to $300 (for the 3000). A $300 dollar outlay just for bullets isn't cheap.

    Same with primers. With the hazmat fee, if you don't buy 10,000 primers in one order, you're not getting any kind of savings. For Federal primers, your invoice is going to be $285'ish. That's not cheap.

    So... yes, you can save money by reloading. But if you can't come up with $300 here, and $300 there JUST FOR COMPONENTS... you won't be saving nearly as much as those of us who can do so.

    This hobby is one of those "catch 22s". If you don't have much available money, you won't really be able to 'save' money by doing it, as your component cost will be too high.