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Discussion Starter #1
When and how did relaoding become a "thing" for you? For me it was back in the early 90s. Still an undergratuate Anthropology student at University of New Mexico, I used to practice shooting my 1st self-bought 38 Special (a Spanish Ruby revolver= a S&W Model 10 with adjustable sights) in my Mother's old timey corral. I knew about reloading back then, from a couple of flicks, like Tremors for example, and an Uncle on the Navajo rez who had a single stage press for his 30-30 leverguns. So it didn't seem logical to just throw away brass. Ammo was cheap then too. A box of fifty 38 Sepcials was about $5-$7 bucks. But I kept the brass anyway. Then I got a 9mm, then a AR-15 even though the college lifestyle didn't leave a lot of room for money. But I always managed to work while in college and would save and/or put something on lay-away. By the late 90's I had quite a stash of 38-Spec/357 Mag, 9mm and 223 brass and decided to get a RCBS single stage reloading kit.
Now, 30 years later, I'm glad I made the jump. I've reloaded through all the ammo shortages since then, reloaded through other trying times like a divorce and near homelessness and have guns that have never fired factory ammo. Not to mention that I have a comfortable stash of ammo and still get to shoot at the very least once a month when I busy with work/family stuff. Pretty boring story, but I'd like to hear how others went about it.
 

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Early 70’s for me. .38 Special was around $6.00/ box(!) so I thought I could do better. Started with a Lee Whack-a-mole setup, graduated to a Lyman 310 tool, and never looked back. Better tools and equipment over the years, but the basic premise was sound. During the last great shortage ( and this one, too) I was shooting when no one could find ammo.
 

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I was between 12 and 14 years old and wanted to shoot Dad's Savage 99 in 250 Savage. Dad didn't have much ammo for it but had a Lyman Tru-Line Jr loader and all the fixings. He told me to read the Lyman reloading manual he had and went from there. That's been nearly 50 years ago.
 

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Florida's Left Coast
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I'm a neophyte, having started about a dozen years ago shortly after my first retirement when I had time to get back into competing.

Only cared about producing designer ammo for specific pistol disciplines - and lots of it. So... my first press ever, was a 650. Last year sometime, I added a 750 and 2 bullet feeders. Right now, loading 9, .380, and .45ACP.

My first (purchased) gun was also a .38 Special - about 50 years ago in Hawaii... after I was the victim of a felony home invasion! Have since acquired through trade, a Smith Highway Patrolman with a great trigger. Have shot that in Bowling Pins, but 6 shots for 5 pins can be tough... for me... with a wheel gun.

In my mind I reload .38 and 10mm because I have the dies and save the brass... but haven't gotten around to actually loading anything in those calibers. :crying:
 

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I started reloading in the early 90s and like every other decision I’ve ever made it was a spur of the moment one!

I looked in the yellow pages(pre internet times)and drove over and picked up a Lee anniversary kit.

Now I have an LNL, Lee SS cast and a T7 and can honestly say I prefer loading to shooting! I’m kind of a loner that way.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I'm a neophyte, having started about a dozen years ago shortly after my first retirement when I had time to get back into competing.

Only cared about producing designer ammo for specific pistol disciplines - and lots of it. So... my first press ever, was a 650. Last year sometime, I added a 750 and 2 bullet feeders. Right now, loading 9, .380, and .45ACP.

My first (purchased) gun was also a .38 Special - about 50 years ago in Hawaii... after I was the victim of a felony home invasion! Have since acquired through trade, a Smith Highway Patrolman with a great trigger. Have shot that in Bowling Pins, but 6 shots for 5 pins can be tough... for me... with a wheel gun.

In my mind I reload .38 and 10mm because I have the dies and save the brass... but haven't gotten around to actually loading anything in those calibers. :crying:

Can definitely relate. Got my first handgun, the 38 Spec. mentioned above, afetr I was shot at in a "country drive by." I was playing my guitar in the old wood garage late at night when I car on I-25 (my Ma's place was on the frontage road) slowed down and shots rang out. With some hitting the garage I was in. I was pissed more than scared. Next day I put the 38 on lay away.
 

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M62/76
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For me it started in the late-90s with shotgun shells when I shot sporting clays a lot. Got an RCBS set up for my 18th Bday. Then in the early-2000s I got into Weatherbys and some of the elephant-bashing cartridges. I was in college at the time and reloading was affordable and factory ammo was not (it never is).

I don’t reload much anymore- outside of a few pricey rifle cartridges- .35 Rem, 270 Wby and .308 Norma Mag, I mostly just reload .38 Super, .38 Spl and .45ACP these days.

Partially because I don’t shoot as much as I used to and because reloading isn’t cheap anymore.
 
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M62/76
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I was between 12 and 14 years old and wanted to shoot Dad's Savage 99 in 250 Savage. Dad didn't have much ammo for it but had a Lyman Tru-Line Jr loader and all the fixings. He told me to read the Lyman reloading manual he had and went from there. That's been nearly 50 years ago.
Not to hijack the thread, but do you still have the Savage?
 
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Scouts Out
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30years ago I was competing for the Army and Jimmy Carter was Pres and he cut off funds for Teams. I got a simple RCBS Partner Press kit and off I was.
 

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Not to hijack the thread, but do you still have the Savage?
Yes I do. It is on its third barrel now. Dad shot the first one out shooting crows back in the day. I helped burn the second one out when I started reloading for it, old untrimmed brass and no case trimmer. I didn't even know there was such a thing back then!
 

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When I started shooting pistol competition in the 80"s. Used to use a friend of mine's equipment before then.
 

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In 1967 I got a "Barn Find" double barrel 10 gauge side by side breech loading hammer gun for 60 bucks.

It used 2 7/8ths inch shells which were still availble in 1967 but hard to find and 3 1/2 10 guage were much more common.

So I got a couple of boxes of 2 7/8ths inch shells and then bought an 8 dollar Lee loader (The kind you hit with a leather hammer) and started reloading for it. The other guns I had were mil-surp rifles and ammo was cheap and I didn't need to reload for them. In 1969 I went into the military and they provided me with ammo but not like the rifle ammo I was used to. It was some dinky little Varmint round.

4 years later, I got my first handgun, a 44 special charter arms bulldog and got a 10 dollar Lee loader for reloading that and soon afterward got a RCBS scale to use instead of the lee powder scoops and after I had worked up some loads, I made my own custom powder scoops by soldering an 8 penny nail for a handle on to different size range brass and cutting the brass down to the volume I needed.

Eventually I got an RCBS powder measure and Rockchucker press. and a Lee hand priming tool and thn a Lee bottom pour lead furnace and was able to find some good used lyman bullet molds. I went on to reload for many other cartridges. I developed a good load for 9mm which used a lyman roundnose 158 grain bullet for 38 special using unique powder back in the 80's before "Subsonic" loads like that we popular. It was very accurate out of a Smith and Wesson model 39 but I don't like DA/SA guns so I got rid of it.

I lost 10 gauge Lee loader but found one for a 12 gauge that would work to prime and de-prime 10 gauge magnum shells which I would disassemble using a 4 inch drywall screw to pull the shot wad and the over powder wads and dump out the smokeless powder and refill with Black Powder.

Black powder shot shells are loaded volume-to-volume shot to powder. I worked up an intersting load whine I discovered that two 69 caliber balls would fit inside a shot cup and would prinet withing an inch or two of each other at about 30 feet distance. I cut the bareels back on that gun to 20 inches from the original 30 and it is an excellent weapon for repelling boarders to any vessel or dwelling
 

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I started out very slowly. I had two friends that were into reloading, and I used to watch them reload

Years later I wound up with a shoe box that contained a pound of w231, some primers, and and some 148g WC’s, and I would use one of their presses to load up some 38 special every few months.

Then I bought a M1 Garand at the CMP and quickly realized that buying factory ammo was not the preferred way to enjoy my new Garand.

I started out with a friends old Hornady manual and a hand me down Single stage press loading M2 ball clones with IMR4895 and 147g NATO bullet pulls. Very cheap plinking ammo.

Gradually I started loading on a Lee Turret and I have a Lee single stage I like for rifle.

Despite having reloaded thousands upon thousands of round over the years I still consider myself a relatively inexperienced reloader. I have a few loads that have worked well for me over the years and I don’t deviate much from it. I never load max loads or look to make hotter than factory ammo. My goal is always to make loads as cheaply as possible that match factory ammo accuracy and reliability.

I have somewhat branched out recently into trying to make sub moa loads for two of my rifles, but that is a fairly recent development out of boredom since component availability right now is not conducive to high volume shooting. I’ve been looking for ways to enjoy being at the range with a much lower round count.

Currently I am loading .30-06, .270 win, .30-30, 45 auto, 38 spl, and 9mm
 

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16 years old. Step-father let me shoot his S&W M10 .38 and use his RCBS Junior Press to reload some .38s. 50 years later I have 5 presses set up in my man cave and I shoot an awful lot of different guns.

Life is grand!
 

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7 years ago during the great Obama powder shortage.
Many people told me reloading 9 mm wasn’t worth the cost savings.....I paid for my 550B in six months.
Haven’t looked back, added some other pistol calibers and a Mec 650 to feed my Sporting Clays habit.
 

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My 1st handgun as a m19 357mag. In 1975 I was 19, 357mag ammo was expensive so I started reloading my own. Fast forward, dozens of calibers & 100s of 1000s of rds, its still pretty much about saving $$$, but I enjoy tinkering & making things so making my own ammo seems right. Most of my rifles are wildcats so reloading is a must.
 

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I have been interested in reloading from 1973. One of my classmates father had reloading equipment. I did not start reloading until 2008, when shelfs were empty, just like now. I bought a Lee Classic Turret press and all the supporting items. Watched hundreds of YouTube videos. Askes lots of dumb questions, many of them right here on this forum, and essentially learned how to reload. I've worked up to a Dillon XL650 press. Learning to reload has been one of most rewarding and useful skills and hobby.
 

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In 1966, I was going to school in Kansas and so broke, two nickels were hard to come by. (Edit: Old joke about being so broke that he didn't have two nickels to rub together). Some of us hunted a LOT and shotgun shells were expensive. We kicked in together and got a Texan reloader. It was mounted on a piece of plywood and it got plenty of use. Plastic wads were expensive, so we used nitro cards, fiber cushion wads and loaded paper hulls until they began to burn through at the top of the brass!

Started to shoot rats at some illegal trash dumps and traded around until I got a Ruger Blackhawk .38/.357 mag and my very first 1911 in 1968. That 1911 was $98 and well used when I bought it!

Got the Lee Loaders in .45 and .38/.357 and loaded lots of ammo! I kept track of the number of rounds by keeping the Speer bullet boxes. Lost track at several thousand rounds. TAP, TAP, TAP! I sat on the floor of my tiny trailer making metallic cartridges.

I moved around a lot but got an RCBS Rock Chucker and later, two Dillon RL450's and some Mec600jr's for shot shells. Moved around even more, then worked for Jim Yeates, a custom bullet maker in Tulsa. That got me started in casting my own bullets.

Shot lots of "Combat Shooting" matches and met a young guy named Wilson who drove in from Arkansas to shoot with us.

Moved around some more and sold my presses in the process. Later, replaced the Dillon RL450's with Dillon RL550B's. Also had a SD Dillon press for a while. Replaced the Mec Loaders in 12 gauge and .410.

I sold my bullet casting equipment but when the first panic hit, replaced all of it. I don't cast right now, but can make bullets for anything that I shoot, if the need arises.

In 2020, I lost my sight and have battled cataracts all year. That shut down all shooting & reloading for now. After two surgeries, in a couple of weeks of more healing, I'll be back to normal!

Flash
 
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