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Florida's Left Coast
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I don't try to pick up range brass unless it is brand new and a shooter is leaving it behind.
Yeah, I just don't have the 'control' over scrounged brass at my new club. Shot once was free and easy at my old range. Now... too many Major (PF) shooters, with well-abused brass. I've found though, that getting on a squad with a lot of ladies shooting (without F106 husbands), can yield a good amount of factory once-fired brass. Seems that ladies don't do a lot of reloading! o_O

...bought Federal for the brass instead of Blazer for the price.
That's how I ended up with my newly discovered 2,000 factory 10mil rounds... really bought it a few years back for the brass. How cheap was factory ammo when we were looking primarily for brass recovery of a factory round - and a little trigger time, to boot?

If you ask the opinions of 3 reloaders on any given topic, you will get at least 4 different replies. This reloading thing isn't brain surgery, don't overthink it!
No truer words. I know my preferred way of achieving results is often a lot different than some conventional wisdom. My way is best... of course. :dancing:
 

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I wonder how we ever got those machines set up before the Internet? It turns out, the manual is pretty comprehensive. It's especially useful when it's read.

In my view, his bullet box/tray is suboptimal in that it causes a really awkward hand motion when fetching a bullet. Around 14:00

Small things matter!
I'm a girl and don't mind reading the manual or asking directions. Reading the rules is always my first bit if advice for those shooting competition. But I fear that manual and rule reading is a low priority for reloaders and competitors alike.

Bullet tray position is horrible, but at most, I only place the bullet and not the case and bullet. That 550 operation looks painful to me.
 

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Everyone knows it's the woman that reads the manual before doing something and therefore knows what she's doing. The guys on the other hand try desperately to avoid reading the manual and then can't figure out why they have leftover parts! :)

Steve
 
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Everyone knows it's the woman that reads the manual before doing something and therefore knows what she's doing. The guys on the other hand try desperately to avoid reading the manual and then can't figure out why they have leftover parts! :)

Steve
414d8a346c3c350601c7f794eca6e2a1.jpg
 

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Now... too many Major (PF) shooters, with well-abused brass. :dancing:
That is exactly the reason for not picking up range brass. 9mm shooters trying to make Major, .40 shooters thinking they can reinvent the 10mm and then there is .45 Super beating the crap out of ACP cases. Don't even get me started on 10mm shooters thinking they can reinvent the .41 Magnum.

There's a reason this stuff was left on the ground.

It isn't universally true but bright silver primers might be a good indication that the round was reloaded. Winchester primers being an exception, I believe. If it's silver, leave it lay. If it's brass you need to think about whether it could be a Winchester primer and a reload.

Just don't!

And I should point out that there is some brass with a step on the inside diameter down at the base. This diminishes case volume and, for the usual charge weight will increase pressure. How much? I don't know! And neither does anybody else...

Fundamental principle: Hobbyists have NO way to measure pressure. Everything is a guess based on adherence to some loading manual and that only applies if exactly the same components are being used. The good news is that following legitimate loading manuals doesn't blow up very many guns.
 
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Bullet tray position is horrible, but at most, I only place the bullet and not the case and bullet. That 550 operation looks painful to me.
The author of the video wanted to use a Hornady Powder Cop in station 3 when loading 6.5 Creedmoor. As a result, he seats the bullet in station 4 and has to reach through the press to start the bullet. Hint: Get your hand out of the way before working the handle!

Ugly! But at least there is a check on powder charge.
 

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Best/efficient brass cleaning process? Whatcha got? I don’t want to waste much time or money making squeaky clean brass.

Also, would you recommend sorting cases and and sticking with one brand when I first get going? Does it really matter?

I’ve got a total of 4K xtreme bullets, 6lbs of powders, 2k spp, and 3 manuals on the way. Next week I’ll get on the long Dillon wait list.
Sorting brass is kinda caliber specific for me. I sort precision rifle brass by headstamp & number of times fired. Handgun brass, mostly dont care but in 9mm. There is a bunch of crap brass in 9m I avoid as well has most foreign stuff. With 147gr bullets, they seat deeper, most foreign brass is too thick near the middle. Rest of the caliber, just clean & shoot.
Lots of ways to clean brass. It doesnt need to be sqeaky clean, just free of dirt & debris. Primary ways are dry tumble & wet clean or wet tumble. I personally dont care for wet cleaning. It adds steps to my reloading & the brass is actually too clean. A quick method which is cheap & fast is soak an old towel in a gal of water with alvl tsp of lemishine. Its citric acid, most grocery stores carry it. Wring the towel out so its still wet but not sloppy. Roll the brass around in the towel for 5m. Then rinse with another towel wet with just water. Brass is clean &'pretty shiny, about 10m total time & no drying ir extra steps. I prefer dry tumble; put brass on, turn it on, come back in 3hrs & sift the clean shiny brass out, ready to load.
 
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The brass I have now is mix of once fired fed, win, blazer, with a bit of aguila...that stuff has a funny crimped case to prevent bullet setback. Idk about that aguila brass, but I’ll definitely sort this first batch out by head stamp.

It’s not easy to find starline now, but I’ll get a batch sometime to try out.



I like that philosophy.

Thanks for the advice, F106.


Here’s a Glock specific question that I’ve read a lot about over on Enos Forums, and maybe you guys have some opinions/feedback - Glocked Brass. The unsupported chamber in Glocks can cause bulged casings, most notably in 40. From what I’ve read this isn’t much of a problem in 9.
All I shoot is range brass, all calibers. Easy to spot a glocked piece of brass but in 1000s of loaded 40, never had an issue. I cant tell from once fired at the range but I can tell brass that has been fired more than once. I toss anything with flat or pierced primers or anything that looks beat to crap. Handgun brass will last an amazingly long time if not shooting max loads.
 
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Florida's Left Coast
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...I’ve got a total of 4K xtreme bullets, 6lbs of powders, 2k spp, and 3 manuals on the way. Next week I’ll get on the long Dillon wait list.
Looking at your quantities... my personal favorite 9mm load with my powder yields ~2,000 rounds/lb, and that's the rough rule to figure out where I am on stock.
1lb = 7,000gr/3.5gr loads = 2,000 rounds, so as a rule with an average handgun (minor) load, you have an 8K bullet deficit and a 10K primer deficit given your 6lbs of powder.

Think I figured that right... it's late.
 

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Everyone knows it's the woman that reads the manual before doing something and therefore knows what she's doing. The guys on the other hand try desperately to avoid reading the manual and then can't figure out why they have leftover parts! :)

Steve
If a guy gives a woman reloading advice but she does not hear, is he still wrong?
 

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I pick up every piece of brass I can get my hands on. I have a 5 gallon pail half full with calibers I don't shoot (yet).

I don't sort by head stamp but I do look at every piece one-by-one. Throw out ones that are damaged, only keep the name brands, make sure they are of the correct caliber, etc. Tedious but does not take long.

I then clean with a tumbler. 50/50 corn and walnut with Dillon case polish.
 

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Best/efficient brass cleaning process? Whatcha got? I don’t want to waste much time or money making squeaky clean brass.
Also, would you recommend sorting cases and and sticking with one brand when I first get going? Does it really matter?
I'm retired and have much more time on my hands than others - However I have a rather lengthy cleaning process because I have run into too many case failures in my day. My process allows far greater inspection than just tossing them into a tumbler for an hour or so. True, you don't need squeaky clean brass, most all of them will have no problems reloading them.
I separate brass - Keep mostly Remington, Federal and Winchester, I have a big tub of Blazer brass and an assortment of other brands, as long as I have a couple of hundred or more of each brand. Odd-ball brands get tossed. Home defense (or in some calibers) I only use new Starline Brass.

Well, I got one on the way.
What would you recommend?
I like using several different manuals when working up new loads.
Lyman 50 edition - extremely useful for lead reloading.
Hornady 10th Edition
Speer #15 Edition
LEE - Second Edition (copy rite 2011 → )
I would highly recommend going on line (Amazon.com) and picking up a copy of this magazine. HODGDON 2020 (2021) annual manual RELOADING.
These will give you all the reloading advise and data you will ever need.
 

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Discussion Starter #154
Looking at your quantities... my personal favorite 9mm load with my powder yields ~2,000 rounds/lb, and that's the rough rule to figure out where I am on stock.
1lb = 7,000gr/3.5gr loads = 2,000 rounds, so as a rule with an average handgun (minor) load, you have an 8K bullet deficit and a 10K primer deficit given your 6lbs of powder.

Think I figured that right... it's late.
Yea, primer deficit is accurate!

I was figuring closer to 1500 rounds, or less, per pound based on 115/124 bullets recipes I’ve read.

I’ll get some 147s to play with...and hopefully more primers.



Happy Thanksgiving everybody!
 

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Discussion Starter #157
Just wanted to check back in for the first time in a while..at least since the new forum look. Hope everyone is doing well.

I got my Lee 2nd Edition manual in last night and was reading some before bed. The first part is all about him and his wonderful Lee equipment that can't be beat under any circumstances.....and he does make a good case, but some of it is ridiculously sounding. It's a good read though.

One thing I learned a bit about, regarding primer safety....Mr. Lee says right here in this book that he will never make a prime on the press system like other presses use. Says it's just a bad idea waiting to happen. Ok, the dude at the reloading shop I visited echoed this same thing to me...he used a Lee press, and I suspect he's read this book. Anyway, I've heard of Dillon primer tubes blowing up...so I googled, kind of wish I hadn't. The common theme regarding Dillon primer mishaps usually involved the 650 or federal primers.

Mr. Lee taught me about Federal primers last night as well. You know why federal primers come in such awful big boxes? Because they are more sensitive and hazmat packing requires them to have more area worth of packing. He goes on to say he pretty much hates federal primers and won't use them.

Myself, I just bought 2k federal gold match primers because I found em, and I'm not passing up retail priced primers right now. Hope they don't blow me up.

Do any of you all have stories about blown primers? I learned some good lessons last night about primer safety. If you have any wise advice regarding that, I'm all ears. Static electricity and primers was something I learned a bit about. Also, keep your primer tubes clean, and your press.

This Lee manual also has a lot of load data for 9mm. More than my Hornady book, which was pretty good and clear to read and understand. Lee has more powders and projectile variations, but they don't necessarily list the same powders for all the projectiles. Like win231 for example, I have some of that and CFE Pistol. Lee lists both of those powders in a 115 Lead chart, but they don't list those powders for 115 FMJ or 115 Plated.

The Lee book seems like a pretty good resource, and I look forward to reading more and figuring it out.

I'm glad I have years of factory ammo and don't have to rush into this.
 

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650s had alleged issues with setting off the entire primer magazine - that's one reason the mag is a blast shield. 550 and 750... shouldn't happen.

I absolutely LOVE Federal primers because they are known to be the softest, and try to use them exclusively. That's an asset to me as they always go bang in my modified handguns.
 

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I'll throw in my experience and 2 cents. Haven't read everyone's input so I'm probably repeating several things.

Started out on a Lee Classic Turret loading .45 ACP. Got to where I'd avoid shooting too much because I dreaded having to replace it and would spend hours working on trying to stay ahead. Always had to tinker with it to make things work. Loaded about 6k rounds on it and had enough and went to the 650. Best purchase I've ever made. Thousands of .45 ACP, 9mm, and .223 loaded on it to date. It's an investment, but worth it, especially if you enjoy reloading as a hobby. I don't feel guilty about burning up 500 rounds of 9mm at a time because I can replace it in an hour on the 650 rather than probably 5 to 6 hours with breaks on the LCT. If you don't shoot that much and have plenty of time, the LCT will make plenty good enough ammo.

Started out using an ultrasonic to clean, but I can do a lot more at a time in a wet tumbler. The pins are unnecessary and I only use them sparingly with some .223 cases.

There are some headstamps to avoid in pistol brass so doing an initial sort of your stock is a good thing. If you find NATO cases, that's a good time to go ahead and decrimp them. Shooting mixed headstamps still yields single digit SD for me in pistol calibers. I sort rifle for particular headstamps I separate for accuracy loads and leave the rest for plinking.

I've only used CCI primers in the 650, but I do have some Federals I'll eventually use. CCIs can take a beating in my experience, but having no experience with Federals, I plan on being very cautious and will use eye and ear pro.

On picking up range brass, if there's a pile with all the same headstamp that looks new, has the correct color primer to the best of my knowledge, and usually there's a corresponding box in the trashcan...I'll definitely grab those. If the brass looks rough or I perceive it to be a reload, it stays. If there's a pile of clean brass but all mixed headstamps, it stays. Likely someone's mixed reloads. Could be fine, but I don't need brass that bad.

Edited to add: oh yeah, buy a chronograph. You can get away with not having one, but you'll never know the full story of your reloads in your particular guns without one.
 

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I saw a pic of a bench like this and it caught my eye. I liked the simplicity of materials and sturdiness with back bolted to the studs and feet bolted to the concrete.







The legs are 36", flanges plus a 2" top make it 39". I can have 550 bolted to that bench with a case feeder and have 7" of clearance from the ceiling. I can either stand or get a appropriate stool.



I could definitely use more ammo can space. Storing factory rounds is one thing, now I gotta store components...

BUT WAIT THERE'S MORE!
That is a clean looking design, but I think I'd want the legs or more support closer to the press' footprints. That's a lot of leverage flexing that 10-12" span from the supports to the edge of the bench top.
 
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