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So, I've been looking into reloading as a more cost effective method of feeding my 1911.

In order to better understand the cost savings, I worked up a spreadsheet to estimate the cost per round. I assumed that I wouldn't incur any cost for the brass since I've been saving mine for a while. Using the latest Midway flyer, I came up with these costs: 2.4 cents per primer; 1.8 cents of powder per round; and 13.4 cents per bullet (remington FMJ). I'm not interested in shooting lead cast bullets.

So with those inputs I came up with a cost per round of $17.5 cents, and a cost per 1k of $175. That seems to be $75 savings per 1k over the georgia arms ammo that I currently use.

It seems to me that I with about $600, I could pick up a progressive reloader and other assorted equipment that would let me put out about 500 rounds or so per hour. In other words, in 2 hours I can save $75. I've got to shoot about 8k rounds to break even on the cost of the equipment, ignoring the cost of my time. If I figure in the value of my time, then reloading just doesn't seem to have any payback for me. I've got to be missing something. Any thoughts?
 

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there is more to reloading than coast saving, for me i just really enjoy doing it,making my own ammo experimenting with different loads,bullets ext. and the cost saving is somewhat of an illusion while you do get significantly more for your buck ive found it so addicting that im probably spending three times as much on ammo than i was before,but thats fine with me cuz im shootin a whole lot more and ive found a hobby i really enjoy,my wife is starting to suspect the savings line ive been giving her thuogh:hrm:
 

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I've been reloading only 4 years and have only reloaded 3,400 rnds. But, since I started my average cost per 50 with pick up brass and Rainer bullets has been $5.79. When I looked at the recent cost due to inflation, I am averaging $7.55 per 50. Those 68 boxes of bullets have saved me $438.00.

My reloading equipment only costs me $300.00. So I am ahead.

I buy my powder and primers locally and buy the bullets from Midway.

I don't shoot any more than if I buy, but I like the convenience of not having to make a stop at Wally World or Academy on they way to the range
 

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Shooting lead is the cheapest way to go. For a 1911 there is no reason to shoot FMJ so I am curious as to why you don't want to shoot them. Once you find the right diameter, usually .452, you will not have any leading at all. Why throw that money away?

Now if you really want to save money, cast your own as someone already mentioned. It is costing me about 1.50-1.75 per 50 with free lead (depending on primer costs mostly). OK, i have a source of free lead which is not too common.

Try the lead too, I think you will find it more than satisfactory-and every bit as accurate.

John
 

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As mentioned before, there's more to it than just saving money. There's quite a bit to learn concerning the concept of reloading - and if you aren't "interested" in the concept to start with, reloading will turn into more of a chore rather than a hobby.
If you start viewing it as a "chore", it'll soon start being a "tedious chore". And will probably soon start outweighing time consumption vs. cost of factory ammo.
Me personally, I love it. I don't look at it for saving money - I look at it as getting a box of premium components, match grade ammo for the same (or probably less) than the cost of cheap, low-end cartridges.
Make sure you want to invest your time into reloading before jumping right into it, or you may just invest a lot of money into tools and equipment that you'll never use.
 

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Lead, the only way to go.

I started to save money. Then I loaded to shoot comps (couldn't shoot 3-4 weekends a month on factory). Then I started experimenting with diff powders & bullets. Now I mainly load for all the above reasons AND what I load (almost exclusively) you can't buy in any store.

I load 255 gr lswc'rs. They're my pin load, USPSA/IPSC load, speed &falling steel load, and range/plinking load.

My last figures put my reloads at approx. $3.50-$3.75 a box of 50. Tracy
 

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So with those inputs I came up with a cost per round of $17.5 cents, and a cost per 1k of $175. That seems to be $75 savings per 1k over the georgia arms ammo that I currently use.

I've got to shoot about 8k rounds to break even on the cost of the equipment, ignoring the cost of my time. If I figure in the value of my time, then reloading just doesn't seem to have any payback for me. I've got to be missing something. Any thoughts?
Here's my take on your question. Most companies that I worked for in my working career wanted a 3 to 7 year payback for a capital investment. How long will it take you to shoot 8K rounds. For many of us, that would be about 6 months shooting. That would make it a pretty good investment in my eyes. But, if you're not going to shoot 8K rounds in 5 years, then possibly reloading won't be cost effective for you.

As far as "the value of your time", most of us actually enjoy reloading. Some may enjoy it almost as much as shooting. I've heard it asked here "do we reload to shoot more, or do we shoot a lot so we can reload more"? Would you be doing something else with the 2-3 hours it would take to reload 1K rounds, that would be more profitable?
 

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I find that all the cost savings from reloading goes to buy more reloading stuff.

But reloading is not all about saving. You never add your time into the equations because this is alone time I do not care who you are everyone needs a little time to themselves.

here is my cost work up for my go to 45acp load

Bullet 11 cents per round (231.00 for 2000 bullets)
Powder 1.4 cents ($20/7000*5) (5 gr of titegroup)
Primer 2 cents ea($20 per 1000)

My total cost is 14.4 cents per round. *100 rounds = $1.44 per 100.

No brass cost as I am a range rat. All my reloadin equipment was a gift except for minor stuff I have bought along the way.

When I am reloading my family knows to leave dad alone untill he is done. Then dad is all yours for what ever you need. I also wait untill the kids are in bed to start most of the time.

The best thing I get out of reloading is the pride that I can take a factory Reming 700VLS and make it shoot .4" groups with my handloads. Crafting ammo is not just for time and money.
 

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I use premium compnents and a local caster does my bullets for me. I don't quite eunderstand your aversion to lead. It's as much as 50% cheaper than FMJ., which uses more powder. Just food for thought.

200 LSWC $65/1000
Viht N310 $26 lb. (1700 loads per lb.)
Federal Match Primers $35/1000

I work at a range and get my brass for free but all in all, I pay about $115/1000. I could get it down to less than $100 but I don't like CCI or Mag-Tech primers and Fed Match seems to be all I can find at Sportsman's. Dirty powders are a pain for me as I shoot indoors and have a regimented practice/training program and I don't like shooting through smoke.
 

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Load lead - it's no big deal. After you load, wash your hands, lead doesn't get through your skin if it's not cut.

You should be shooting in a well ventilated or outdoor range. If not, shooting jacketed won't help you avoid lead poisoning. First of all, there's some lead in the primers and, as much as I like the smell of burnt gunpowder, breathing that smoke doesn't provide any health benefits either.

You get lead poisoning by injesting/inhaling it; so keep your hands clean and you'll be fine. I checked my blood for lead last year and had no problems - and I shoot lead exclusively.
 

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So, I've been looking into reloading as a more cost effective method of feeding my 1911...It seems to me that I with about $600, I could pick up a progressive reloader and other assorted equipment that would let me put out about 500 rounds or so per hour. In other words, in 2 hours I can save $75. I've got to shoot about 8k rounds to break even on the cost of the equipment, ignoring the cost of my time. If I figure in the value of my time, then reloading just doesn't seem to have any payback for me. I've got to be missing something. Any thoughts?
How much do you shoot per week on average?

How much time are you willing to dedicate to reloading per week on average?

Just how cost effective do you want to be?

My numbers were about 5-600 rounds per week and 2-3 hours, which lent itselft perfectly to a Lee turret press and accessories for less than half your expected outlay of $600.

I shoot mostly lead as it is much cheaper than FMJ. I only reload plated or FMJ for selected guns and it is from component stocks I bought into 3-4 years ago when I paid less than half what they cost today.

As far as time goes, I like to think time has value whatever you are doing, but there are those that think it doesn't depending on what it is you are doing and whether you could be doing something else more profitable. I guess that portion of the cost calculations is up to the individual to decide for themselves.
 

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OOPS sorry about that. The kids were getting home from school and you all know how that is. :biglaugh::biglaugh:
 
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