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Newbie with a few basic questions

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by bowzette, Sep 1, 2010.

  1. bowzette

    bowzette

    105
    19
    Aug 7, 2010
    Texas
    I use to do some shooting and reloading years ago. Sold everything and just getting back into shooting. I've been buying 9mm Federal Eagle at Wally World aroun $10 for 50 rds. I can buy .38 for around $12 to $13 a box + tax at a different store. What can I expect to reload 9mm & .38 target rds for? For example excluding the cost of reloading equiptment, brass and value for labor, what is the cost for lead bullets, for jacketed bullets, small pistol primers, per primer and power per load. For example: .08 for lead bullet, .03 for primer and .03 for power= $.14 per round, not amortizing the cost of reloading equiptment and brass. Just looking for ball park $ for lead and jacketed ammo.

    I think i had a Lee single press loader. It worked fine but was slow. What types of reloaders would provide best bang for the bucks, bad pun, for reloading several calibers for handguns taking into consideration cost, volume of production. I am probably only shooting 100 rds a week of 9mm and 50-100 of .38. I have an AA conversion kit for the 9mm Glock which helps with the cost of shooting it.
     
  2. GioaJack

    GioaJack Conifer Jack

    10,016
    1
    Apr 14, 2009
    Conifer, CO
    Get a case of Diet Pepsi, a bag of Cheese Puffs and a carton of cigarettes... this is going to be a long thread. :supergrin:

    No matter what equipment you end up with or how you buy your components you're not going to save money, you're just going to be able to shoot a lot more for what you're spending now and become a much more knowledgeable and better shooter... none of which are bad things. Good luck.


    Jack
     


  3. XDRoX

    XDRoX

    6,442
    2,250
    Jan 24, 2009
    San Diego
    The prices for components are really going to fluctuate depending on how much you buy and where you buy it from.

    Not counting brass, I reload 9mm for under $6 per 50, and I'm using pretty expensive plated bullets ($83 per 1K). If you used lead I'm sure you could get it under $5 per 50 rounds, making like 50% off walmart. I usually buy thing in bulk. 5K primers, 8lb powder, 3K bullets, etc...

    A good inexpensive press is the Lee Classic Turret.
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2010
  4. Lothar

    Lothar Noob

    546
    0
    Jul 12, 2008
    New Castle, CO
    Please remember not to shoot lead bullets out of a stock Glock! Get yourself some plated berrys and you'll be loading for cheap!

    Powder = $20 per lb - 1 lb = 7000 grains, 4.7 (ish) grains per rd = 1489 rounds per pound or .0134 cents per round.

    Berrys 9mm bullets = $83 per 1000 = .083 cents per round.

    Primers = $35 per 1000 = .035 cents per round.

    That's .13 cents a round or $13 per hundred rounds.
     
  5. bowzette

    bowzette

    105
    19
    Aug 7, 2010
    Texas
    thanks. I know not to shoot lead bullets in a factory 9mm barrel. I also agree that I'm not likely to save money but shoot more. I was guessing that i could reload for $.13-15 per round-about 50% of a good discount cost. Am i looking at an initial investment in equiptment in the $500/$600 range for the use discribed above? Im looking for a Honda, not a Porche and not a Kiva.
     
  6. ron59

    ron59 Bustin Caps

    6,927
    20
    Jan 3, 2009
    Smyrna, GA
    For your 9mm @ $10 per 50 .... that's very cheap these days, but even then that is $200 per 1000, right?

    I'm loading at $140 per 1000, and that's using a pricier 147gr bullet. If I were to use a 115gr bullet (equivalent to what you're buying)... price would be even cheaper.

    If you shoot outside, and don't mind the smokiness of a lead bullet... wow, cost drops EXTREMELY! I shoot indoors, lead is not for me... too smoky.

    To get the best deals though, as said... gotta buy in bulk. I buy 10,000 primers at a time, my cost is roughly $28 per 1000 from Powder Valley. I buy powder in 8lb cannisters (once I decide on what I like), also from PV. Buying locally, at least around here... might not save much at all.
     
  7. Glockin26

    Glockin26

    528
    0
    Feb 22, 2010
    Renton, WA
    I started with a LCT with calipers a scale and a tumbler with media for 300 shippped, I got a dillon square deal b now for 250 with dies used. I like the progressive machine better, but 100 rds on a single stage is an hour from powder in to back in the jug ready to shoot. Square deal is 20 minuets.
     
  8. EL_NinO619

    EL_NinO619 EX-Swage Monkey

    1,615
    0
    Aug 11, 2010
    San Diego
    The little bit of money you do save will all go to reloading accessories.:tongueout: Trust me. But you can shoot more, and have fun reloading. I would definitely do what XDRoX says and buy bulk if you can afford it. That is where you really save the $0.01. But all in all Shooting is fun and reloading is just as fun. For me there is nothing more satisfying than shooting a tight group with my hand made ammo.:cool:

    Another knowledge bomb: If you can afford a good press buy it, don't end up buying a cheap one, to just buy the good one a month later. Put you money towards QUALITY first. Good Luck:wavey:
     
  9. Boxerglocker

    Boxerglocker Jacks #1 Fan

    6,173
    33
    Mar 6, 2003
    Lynnwood, WA
    I load 124 Precision Delta FMJ’s bout bulk at $70 a thousand, $32 per 1k of CCI primers also bulk, TiteGroup powder $15 pound… that’s my current cost on 9mm $117 a thousand.
    I started on a LCT setup from Kempf’s (which I later sold for 80% of my total cost, before moving to a SDB for $300 with 2 conversions) with a budget case cleaner, used Dillon beam scale, case gauge, Harbor freight calipers, manual and other misc supplies total cost was around $350 for loading one caliber.
    Based on your current cost for 9mm the above set-up would be paid off in 3-4K rounds roughly (less than 4 months for me)
    It’s all about what your actual requirements are, but take into account… Once you start reloading…you will be shooting more, you will always have ammo available (if you buy bulk ahead of time), and you will be shooting better ammo than you can buy.
     
  10. cole

    cole Millennium Member

    3,287
    0
    Dec 25, 1999
    You can save 50% or more on 9mm. For .45acp, you can save 2/3 or more. Buy bulk, look for deals, shoot lead, scrounge brass and save. Cast your own, save even more.

    I've gotten some excellent primer deals recently, and scored a decent deal on 4k LSWC. So, I'm currently reloading 9mm and .45acp under $100/k.

    Typical good bulk deals will add about $10-$15/k to my costs below. Buy small, save little.

    Mine:
    9mm
    FMJ bullets = ~$70/k
    LRN bullets = <$50/k
    Primers = <$25/k
    Brass = free
    Powder = ~$110/8#

    .45
    LRN bullets = ~$70/k
    LSWC = $60/k
    Primers = <$25/k
    Brass = free
    Powder = ~$110/8#
     
  11. at_liberty

    at_liberty

    609
    4
    Jun 19, 2010
    Upstate SC
    Used 9 mm brass is a PITA. It's a good thing that there is plenty of it, because you have to sort and discard significant quantities.

    I still shoot a lot of that $10 a box store bought stuff, even though it is typically 115 gr, while I prefer to load 124 gr and some 147. It is the $25 stuff for .45 ACP that creates the attraction for saving money reloading. The percentages may be similar, but the number of dollars is what gets your attention.

    I think the economy and interest in guns in general creates a rise in demand for 9 mm. I would expect prices to rise, so it might be a good idea to plan on some reloading capability. Unforunately, that means components will be in demand too, possibly to the point where good 9mm brass won't be so easy or inexpensive to come by.

    I did some online price shopping yesterday, and the following is what I found for 1000 pieces of 9mm 124 gr RN, only the ones in stock or available to backorder with a near term date:

    FMJ

    • Montana Gold 107
    • Precision Delta 74
    • Magnus 100 from Midsouth
    • Hornady 109 from Midway
    • Armscor 99 from Graf
    Plated

    • Berry's 83
    • Rainier LS 90 from Midway
    Greater discounts should be expected at higher quantities, Montana Gold in particular.

    I was not interested in hollow point or flat nose, but those were available too.

    As a working number, I would say 9mm bullets cost 10 cents. Only a few months ago I bought 2000 at 9.3 cents, and that was not the lowest price.
     
  12. fredj338

    fredj338

    21,942
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    Dec 22, 2004
    so.cal.
    The short answer, you can reload any handgun round for 1/2 of the cheapest factory using jacketed bullets. A bit less using lead (2-3c/rd). Where/how you buy components is crucial to how much you save. buying a pound of powder & 1K primes, paying shipping & HM, isn't going to save you much.
    You can do quite well w/ the Lee Class Turret press. Unless you need more than 200rds a week, you really don't need a progressive IMO. Even a suingle stage can get you 200rds in less than 3hrs start to finish. Buy the best yo ucan afford, especially powder measure & scale. As always, time is money so the less time you want to sepnd reloading the more it will cost. That includes messing around w/ marginal equip.:dunno:
     
  13. at_liberty

    at_liberty

    609
    4
    Jun 19, 2010
    Upstate SC
    Reloading time has no dollar value in terms of cost, unless it is keeping one from gainful employment, what economists call an opportunity loss. You reload because you have more time than money, so it's kind of a reverse view of time investment as a savings rather than an out-of-pocket expense. You pay with your free time rather than buy the professional value of someone elses time. You mow your grass instead of pay a landscaper to do it. I don't think we usually say that mowing time has financial value. You work your hours for the day, and you are off the clock.
     
  14. fredj338

    fredj338

    21,942
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    Dec 22, 2004
    so.cal.
    I agree, my point being if you want to save time, you have to spend more money for higher end gear.:yawn: Unless you make a lot more than say $30/hr, reloading saves you money vs working more & buying your ammo (adds $3.33/50 labor cost on a 550B).:dunno: I reload to save money but alos to make gun specific ammo.
    When you buy the gear to reload say 45colt, buying a tool head & dies for 9mm is like 500rds of factory ammo, so why not reload the lowly 9mm as well?
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2010
  15. Boxerglocker

    Boxerglocker Jacks #1 Fan

    6,173
    33
    Mar 6, 2003
    Lynnwood, WA
    I'll agree partly with both your statements... but in my case. I would rather pay a landscaper less than half of what I make for a 8 hour Saturday of overtime than do it myself. Time to me is in many ways money, the less I have to spend reloading my ammo needs the more time I have to spend persueing other interests, including shooting. So it's worth the investment to upgrade as the needs rise.
     
  16. fredj338

    fredj338

    21,942
    1,053
    Dec 22, 2004
    so.cal.
    But I so hate paying someone to do a menial job I can do as well or better. Some things I will not do, but mowing the lawn, washing the car, that's what kids are for!:supergrin: There, I just saved you $100/m & gave you at least 4hrs to load ammo. Of course, you have to pay for the crumb grabbers until they can push the mower, but cheap labor is seldom cheap.
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2010
  17. ColdShot

    ColdShot

    163
    0
    Jul 15, 2010
    Bartlett,TN
    .I just got into reloading too,so far I only have .40SW dies.bullets
    But 9MM @ Walmart 10 bucks a box I am steering away from reloading 9MM,when I do the math for powder,primers,bullets etc it came out to be only a 2 dollar savings......I like reloading but my time is worth more to me than saving only 2 bucks...The guy above said 3.33/50 - well good luck to him
    I have not figured out that one yet ----and I do not want to buy 5000 units to show that kind of savings
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2010
  18. ron59

    ron59 Bustin Caps

    6,927
    20
    Jan 3, 2009
    Smyrna, GA
    You have to buy your components in bulk, but you can still save significantly on 9mm. Walmart at $10 per box of 50 is 200 per 1000. It can be reloaded for $117 per 1000, easily. AND, it will probably be better quality.

    I reload my 147grainers at $140 per 1000, but I GREATLY like mine over 115gr factory stuff, oh yeah. Cheaper, and a better load.
     
  19. I started reloading just over a month ago and chose a LCT to begin with. It is a very simple unit to operate but... I now can shoot more for the same money and thats just what i have done. I am now shooting 2-3x as much as before simply because i can afford it. Just last Saturday i completed my first 1000 rounds through the LCT, all with no hic-ups. :supergrin: Even better yet. I took 5th in my division at our State IDPA match using rounds i manufactured.
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2010
  20. shotgunred

    shotgunred local trouble maker

    8,779
    995
    Mar 1, 2008
    Washington (the state)
    Just bare bulk will save you a lot of cash.
    1k primers $32
    1 pound powder$17
    2k bullets $72
    $121 per K $6.06 a box of 50. Here locally this week a box of WWB at walmart $13.47

    $7.42 savings or more than 50% off the cheapest ammo available. you save more with 40 and 45.