New to reloading .223

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by toofman, Dec 17, 2011.

  1. Planning on buying hornaday lock-n-load single stage press for xmas for my .223. Probably a common thread, but any recommendations on primers, powder and bullets? Looking for frugal components.
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  3. I just finished loading up about 1.5k rounds of 223 on my Lock and Load today.

    Saddle up with a friend, two or three for mail order powder and primers to ease the burden of that fat Haz Mat fee. I always hear about Powder Valley from my shooting buds. Look around for bulk rifle bullets. The last round I got was some 62gr FMJ Milspec from Widners.

    I've got about 10k rounds through it all together and I think it's a fine press. Some folks swear by the blue presses, some by the red presses but I chose the red one.

    Just like Dillon, during business hours, you'll always find a Hornady guy a phone call away if you have any questions about anything.

    I even stuck a 223 case I forgot to lube awhile back, called Hornady, and they sent out replacement parts I

    I suggest starting out with one caliber, get a thousand rounds under your belt to get comfortable and experienced enough to catch your mistakes then add another caliber.

    Practice making dummy rounds-no powder, no primer. I probably made 100 dummy rounds before loading my first live round.

    Since it's tough to see in the case of a 223 to confirm your powder drops, I encourage you to start with a shallower straight walled pistol cartridge like a 9, 40, etc.-then get into 223. I think it's Hornady who makes something called a powder cop die, which is nothing more than a plunger with a white O-Ring on it set in the station right after the powder drop used to confirm a drop, and also to confirm the powder level. I noticed today that the small diameter case neck prevents the plunger from going into the neck of the case. Due to the diameter of the plunger end, the O-Ring has to be removed and the plunger has to be flipped upside down then place the O-Ring on the plunger shaft so you can see it in relation to the powder drop level. Get it.

    Watch the CD/DVD that comes in the press, and use existing store bought cartridges to help you set your dies-to get you rolling faster.

    Turn off the radio, be methodical, thoughtful, thorough, and always make sure you have a clear head free from distractions when you load.

    It's a hoot to roll your own.


    #2 chip1wa, Dec 17, 2011
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2011

  4. If you want to save the most money on components you have to buy in bulk.
    I prefer CCI small rifle primers but any small rifle primers will work. Ball powders like Hodgdons H335, BL-C(2), Winchester 748, Ramshot TAC are great powders for the .223, my guns preference is BL-C(2).
    Hornady sells bulk 55grain FMJBT bullets by the 1k there fairly inexpensive and very accurate.
    Places like Powder Valley inc. , Graffs, Wideners, Midwayusa are some best places to get components.
    Because there is a $25 Hazardous Material charge in addition to regular shipping, you need to order powder by the 8lb. jugs and primers by 5k to 10k and combine powder qand primers to make it worthwhile. Bullets don't need the Hazardous fee.
  5. Thanks for the info. Advice on straight walled cases makes a lot of sense. With Hornaday giving 500 free bullets with press purchase, would you get 9mm free or .223? Do you send away for first set of bushings?
  6. If I understand you right your getting a single stage press?

    If so whether you start reloading pistol or rifle, get a reloading block either a multi caliber or the 50 round individual caliber blocks. Then whether you get a powder measure or weigh individual charges on a scale, you can place your loaded cases in the blocks. When the block is full you can look in the tops of all the cases in good light to check your powdr charges to make sure they all look and are charged the same.

    Then you can start to seat your bullets. It's a good way to avoid a light or no charge or a double charge.
    If your actually getting a progressive press, ignore this.

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