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Value of reloading

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by Ski2me, Apr 16, 2012.

  1. Ski2me

    Ski2me Glock Envy

    Apr 11, 2012
    SE Idaho
    OK I've been back and forth on reloading. Now I'd like to hear from those who are experienced reloaders. Is reloading really a money saver? I can buy 40 s&w Federal 100pks for my G22 for less than 28.00 bucks. How much can a person reload 100 rounds for?

    Where is the best place to buy supplies?

    I have a 9mm conversion barrel that won't shoot re-manufactured ammo very well. I there any particular resizing die that I should go with?
  2. Bob2223

    Bob2223 Jack's buddy!

    Mar 26, 2009
    Spencer Indiana
    Read the stickies at the top of the page for supply's
    I cast my own bullets so I'm out $23 a thousand on primers and $24 for a pound of powder to load 1000 rounds, and I still have powder left over.
    Buy in bulk and you will save $
    I have plenty brass and you can reload it many times so I don't even figure it in being most of it was free.
    Been savin your brass, if not you can find once fired brass pretty cheap.

    Welcome to the forum !
    Bob :wavey:

  3. fredj338


    Dec 22, 2004
    Assume you aren't buying brass & buying in some kind of bulk, like 4# of powder & 5K primers & 1000 plated bullets, you can load 40 for about $14/100 or 1/2 of cheap factory. SO if you shoot a lot, it's worth it. Shoot 500rds a month & you save $840/yr, about the cost of a quality progressive setup. Even if you add the cost of once fired brass amortized over 10 reloads, that's still only adds 1/2c per round or 50c/100 add'l.
    SO you do the math & decide. If your time is "valuable", then buy better equip. You can easily load 700rds per hour on a Dillon 650. That is an hourly net rate of $98! You would have to make about $160/hr gross to break even time wise.
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2012
  4. for the 9mm problem, get a good sizing die and a bulge buster for the brass, adds a step, but guarantees the right dimensions, then set your taper crimp die and off you go
  5. JBnTX

    JBnTX Bible Thumper

    Aug 28, 2008
    Fort Worth Texas
    There's a lot more to reloading than saving money.

    It's relaxing and therapeutic.
    It's a hobby unto itself, separate from shooting.
    It gives a sense of accomplishment.
    You learn more about ammo, firearms and ballistics.
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2012
  6. I'm a new reloader, but didn't get into it at all to save money. I started reloading to be able to tune ammo for the gun and for the various competitions I shoot.

    Even using expensive components (VV powder, Montana Gold bullets, etc.) I can still realize some savings. And since I saved nearly NO brass before I started this, I began initially with new $tarline brass.
  7. IndyGunFreak


    Jan 26, 2001
    Is it a money saver? Not really.

    Most people once they start reloading, they shoot more. However, you will shoot more, for the same amount of money.
  8. Colorado4Wheel


    Nov 2, 2006
    You can buy everything you need for about $350. Nothing crappy but not over the top. You can save 50% loading your own. You do have to buy in Large quantities to get good component prices. Mostly because of haze mat.

    As to you conversion barrel.....
    1. Cheap ammo?
    2. Cheap barrel?
    3. Weak ammo? 9mm in a 40 might need the gun tuned for the lighter load.
  9. Murphy's Law

    Murphy's Law

    Nov 1, 2007
    Tampa, FL
    To answer you main question "YES". There are large cost savings. More importantly you can find the load that works best for you specific weapon. However, it's very true that in making your own ammo, the odds are you'll shoot considerably more and therefore may not (all things being equal) save much money.
  10. billy b

    billy b

    Jan 29, 2009
    i do it for several reasons. no 1 is accuracy. you can tailor make your reloads to your gun. my reloads are always more accurate than factory ammo. i have three ar15 they each have there own reloads they like. same with 1911 45.
  11. xXGearheadXx


    Aug 3, 2011
    Knoxville TN
    Saving money (or shooting more, depending on how you look at it) was the reason i got into loading. Using bullseye, CCI400s, and montana gold bullets (bought by the case), i load a 9mm for 12.7c/round as opposed to 22c/round (after tax) for factory loads. Given i'll shoot 1K rounds on a slow month, that's around 90 bucks a month saved per thousand.

    The savings get even better on .223. Around .22c per round as opposed to .44c!

    .300 blackout is better still. Note that i don't count brass a cost of loading a round unless i'm using new cases. Everything except my first 500 .300blackouts i've loaded thus far i've picked up off the i make my own blackout brass.

    After a while you realize, as others here have said, that you can tune your handgun loads to the application (i.e. to shoot just above PF for competition loads), and make some seriously accurate rifle loads on the cheap..."Match" rifle ammo goes for what? A buck or two per shot depending on the cartridge? There's some real savings there as well as accuracy advantages. That expensive "match" ammo may not exactly match up with you rifle....
  12. Zombie Steve

    Zombie Steve Decap Pin Killa

    May 31, 2007
    Old Colorado City
    If you want to go way down the rabbit hole and start casting your own bullets, it gets even better. I'm somewhere between $40 and $50 per thousand in .45 auto. Brass is free if you're paying attention, lead is free if you're paying attention... just need powder, primers, some elbow grease and a little electricity to melt the lead.

    Even if I buy nice hunting bullets for rifle, I'm still reloading for less than half of buying factory.

    The sooner you start, the sooner your tooling up costs are in the rear view mirror. All gravy from there.
  13. ron59

    ron59 Bustin Caps

    Jan 3, 2009
    Smyrna, GA
    As has been said, not sure I consider myself "saving" money. Rather... I can shoot MORE for the same amount of money I was spending before I reloaded, but that's fine with me.

    I can reload 9mm for less than $11 per 100, but I am using a moly-coated bullet instead of a jacketed bullet. For a jacketed buillet it would be closer to $15-16 per 100 or so. When 100 rounds from Wally World is $20-$25... that's a considerable savings to me. I shoot over 1000 rounds per month.
  14. Hogpauls


    Nov 6, 2009
    $14.00 per hundred, and if you shop around, buy bulk and maybe cast your own bullets that cost will go down even more.
  15. shotgunred

    shotgunred local trouble maker

    Mar 1, 2008
    Washington (the state)
    the simple math in current prices. Bought local

    powder $21
    primers $27
    bullets $121
    cost per 1000 is $169
    cost per 100 is $16.90
    cost per box of 50 is $8.45

    Then you have to prorate all your equipment. If you shoot a lot then it doesn't take as much time to break even. If you only shoot a little then forget it.

    The other thing you have to aware of is to save with reloading you have to buy in bulk. You have to buy primers by the thousand, bullets by 2 thousand and powder in 4 pound or larger cans.
    By buying in bulk on the internet.

    powder $11.50
    primers $15.50
    bullets $79
    cost per 1000 is $106
    cost per 100 is $10.60
    cost per box of 50 is $5.30
    40 s&w Federal 100pks $28.00
    Potential savings $17.40 a hundred.

    But in order to save your $17.40 you have to spend somewhere from $300 to $1000 on equipment. Most good quality reloading equipment will last a life time but you still have to shell out for it up front.
  16. This.

    I think you will actually spend more money reloading. By the time you buy all the equipment, then upgrde your press, then buy the next model up because you want to load faster, ect.....

    Don't look at the money savings, look at it as a great hobby that outputs ammo.

    But you will shoot a lot mote.

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  17. fredj338


    Dec 22, 2004
    Well, always depends on how much you shoot, but @ a marginal 500rds/m, you could buy a new press every year & just break even & that is loading 9mm. Load other calibers & savings is much greater. Rounds like the 357sig load for about 1/2c more per round than cheap 9mm. Rilfe rounds save you more, magnum handgun even more. That is buying all your components as well. As noted, start casting your own, you can shoot 9mm for the cost of 22lr.
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2012
  18. As is usual for me, I jumped in with both feet and went pretty much over the top from the get-go.

    About $3500 starting from no reloading gear at all to a Dillon 650 with 3 quick-change calibers, case feeder, primer feeder, bells, whistles, even the bench which I had to add to the 2 other workbenches I already had. Considering I ultimately 'save' very little, it will probably take me the rest of my life to break even.
  19. CaptainXL


    Nov 20, 2009
    From a cost only standpoint - YES - you will save money in the long run. Just how quickly you will recoup the cost of the reloading equipment and supplies depends on how much ammo you shoot (on average) in a year.

    Where I live a box of cheaper 9mm ammo (WWB or equivilant) run about $16.08 ($14.99 plus tax) per box of 50. I can reload 50 rds for about $10.12 which means I save approx $6 per 50 rds. That $10.12 per box is based on free range brass, primer, powder & mid-priced Hornady bullets.

    I reload only 9mm but of course do shoot others calibers.

    Shooting an AVERAGE of 75 rounds of 9mm per week (the only caliber that I reload) with a savings of Approx $6 per box, it will take 11.5 months to recoup the cost of all of the equipment, loading manuals, supplies, etc. In my case that's about 3,750 rounds to break even on costs. See the attached PDF for a break down.

    In conclusion, yes it is cheaper to reload. How soon you start to realize the actual savings depends on how much you shoot. Keep in mind however, as others have mentioned, it is not just about the savings.

    Attached Files:

  20. fredj338


    Dec 22, 2004
    No Sardg, just shoot more!:supergrin:
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2012