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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK , I'm going to put an end to this S*#T ! I can't afford to go to the range any longer so I'm going to have to start reloading my own .45 rounds . My friend says Dillon is the best but has a RCBS basic unit with the additional part that makes it a little faster . I go to the range a couple of times a month and usually shoot 50-100 rounds each time . Is a Dillon Square Deal good enough or should I step up to the 550b unit . I see on ebay where there's not much difference in cost depending on how desperate the seller is. Also my friend says that I should start using lead wadcutters instead of FMJ , which is all I have ever used , thinking that it would keep my Dan Wesson CBOB's barrel cleaner . He says that if I make the change that I can reload for .15-.17 a shot if I already have the brass . I guess the first thing I should do is see if my CBOB will eat those wadcutters . I need some help here ! Any suggestions would be appreciated .
 

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1. I you EVER plan on reloading a rifle round, don't get the Dillon Square-B. It only does pistol ammo. Might as well get a press that will handle rifle rounds too.

2. Opinions on press brands vary. (Lets not get started on blue vs. red, vs. orange vs. green, etc.) Dillon is certainly good, but kinda pricey IMHO. I use a Lee Loadmaster and I have no compaints. You should get a 5 station press at least. That way you can seat the bullet and crimp in seperate stations. Presses that seat and crimp in the same station don't work as well.

3. Semi-wadcutters should run just fine in your CBOB. (At least they did in mine.) You don't have to run semi-wadcutters to save money, just lead. I use 200gr RNFP. As long as you keep the velocity below 1000fps, leading shouldn't be an issue. (And since you can make Major PF with a 200gr at 825fps, that's not a problem.) I actually find it EASIER cleaning my barrel using the lead! The FMJs tend to leave more carbon deposits.
 

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The 550 is certainly a more versatile press. As parallax said. If you're going to reload rifle someday, get the 550.

parallax- why do you need 5 stations to seat and crimp seperately. Station 1-deprime and resize. Station 2- prime, flare and powder drop. Station3-seat bullet Station4- taper or factory crimp. I'm not familiar with your press so I don't know how it works.I use 5 stations, but that's because I employ a Powder Cop die. Unless you have some kind of set up that requires a station just to do powder like some do. I use a 650 for pistol reloading. But even my 4 station Lee Classic turret only needs 4 stations to seat and crimp seperately. So five is nice but four is sufficient for most loaders. Especially just starting out.
 

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I like my Lee Pro 1000 for a lot less than the Dillon. Has 3 stations. I load my rds, change the top plate to the one that has the Lee Factory Crimp Die (LFCD) and run the loaded rds thru again. Only takes a couple of extra minutes to go thru the 2cnd time. I've done this for 130K+ rds.


SpikeMan, get whatever fits your budget, but as already said, if you're gonna load rifle rds----go the 550 route or try your buds machine. Tracy

P.S.--where are you in NC? PM me if you want to remain anonymous.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I like my Lee Pro 1000 for a lot less than the Dillon. Has 3 stations. I load my rds, change the top plate to the one that has the Lee Factory Crimp Die (LFCD) and run the loaded rds thru again. Only takes a couple of extra minutes to go thru the 2cnd time. I've done this for 130K+ rds.


SpikeMan, get whatever fits your budget, but as already said, if you're gonna load rifle rds----go the 550 route or try your buds machine. Tracy

P.S.--where are you in NC? PM me if you want to remain anonymous.
Just south of Charlotte in Weddington .
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
1. I you EVER plan on reloading a rifle round, don't get the Dillon Square-B. It only does pistol ammo. Might as well get a press that will handle rifle rounds too.

2. Opinions on press brands vary. (Lets not get started on blue vs. red, vs. orange vs. green, etc.) Dillon is certainly good, but kinda pricey IMHO. I use a Lee Loadmaster and I have no compaints. You should get a 5 station press at least. That way you can seat the bullet and crimp in seperate stations. Presses that seat and crimp in the same station don't work as well.

3. Semi-wadcutters should run just fine in your CBOB. (At least they did in mine.) You don't have to run semi-wadcutters to save money, just lead. I use 200gr RNFP. As long as you keep the velocity below 1000fps, leading shouldn't be an issue. (And since you can make Major PF with a 200gr at 825fps, that's not a problem.) I actually find it EASIER cleaning my barrel using the lead! The FMJs tend to leave more carbon deposits.
Did you get rid of the CBOB , WHY ?
 

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I would go with the 550b. Get it now and you will never wear it out. If you do Dillon will fix it for free.
 

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Spikeman 52, if you are concerned about the $ go with the Lee hand Press. Thats what I started reloading with and recommend to all new reloaders. You say you shoot about 200 rounds per month. Once your brass is prepped you could easily reload that much in about an hour. Lee makes quality reloading equipment for far less $ than the rest.
 

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You might want to look at the Lee classic turret. Only shooting 200 rounds a month you could load that in close to one hour on the classic turret. You can get set up with the CT for about half of what the Dillon will cost you. I don't know what your budget is and the Dillon is a very nice press but only shooting 200 rounds a month makes the Dillon kind of pricey. Just something to think about.
 

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if i'm paying attention, i can reload 50 rounds of 45 ACP ammo in an hour using my single station RCBS press. yeah, you have to keep swapping dies, but if the brass is clean, then i can go from spent brass (including decapping) to fully loaded in an hour.

if you have a source of lead, casting your own bullets is a great $$ saver, if not, get the cheapest bullets that will work. i wouldn't stress over using lead bullets, if you get a little fouling, it cleans out. that's why you have a cleaning kit.
 

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Seen this guy post this crap before. People come here to learn from others. If we wanted to read books we would go buy them.
I think what he means is if you have never handloaded ammo before....don't just go straight into a progressive press.
 

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Which press?

When you only shoot 200 rounds per month using factory ammo, by reloading, most shooters start shooting a lot more since it is so economical.

You could start with a hand press, or a single stage, or a turret. All are OK.
If you want to start with a great press, with a lifetime warranty, get the Dillon 550. By the time you buy the press, a reloading scale, dial calipers, primer flipper, brass tumbler and separator, you will most likely have about $600 invested. You will never wear it out, and if parts break along the way, Dillon replaces them free. The good news is you can keep as much ammo on hand as you want, and if you ever decide on another caliber gun, the Dillon 550 can handle most all calibers by purchasing a conversion kit.

I use a Dillon 1050 and a Star machine for my high volume pistol loads. I use my Dillon 550 for .380, .223, 9mm, .38super, and .40 S&W. I have extra tool heads with dies and powder measure, so it is very quick to change to a different caliber.
 

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Originally Posted by Nick A
Seen this guy post this crap before. People come here to learn from others. If we wanted to read books we would go buy them.
My mistake. Not Nick A someone with similar username. Sorry didn't mean to hijack thread. Just get frustrated when I read that.:)
 

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By the time you buy the press, a reloading scale, dial calipers, primer flipper, brass tumbler and separator, you will most likely have about $600 invested.
The last six posts I saw where somebody started with a Dillon 550 for one caliber and all the extras were all around $850 or more. If a person has a good budget then it's not so bad, it is a life time investment. Somebody bought this one today.

Dillon 40 S&W/10mm Carbide 3-Die Set $60.95
Dillon D-Terminator Digital Scale $139.95
550B in 40 S&W/10mm $406.95
550B Spare Parts Kit $15.95
Dillon 40 S&W Stainless Case Gage $12.95
550B - As it should BE - Upgrade $141.99
BrianEnos.com Digital Caliper $38.95
4-Pack Small Primer Pickup Tubes $19.95
550B Press Instructional DVD $19.95

Purchase Subtotal: $857.59
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I think that I would shoot weekly if the price was right . Also I'm not opposed to a good $olid purchase the first time . Being mechanically inclined I feel like I could handle whatever is considered best by you with experience . Keep up your recommendations . I like the input . It seems like a $1,000 purchase can be recouped in a little over a year if I can reload .45 lead for .15 each vs. Walmart at .33 which is never in stock .
 

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Get ready to spend a lot of money on reloading. Probably more than what you're spending now on that factory .45acp ammo, if you're only shooting 100-200 rounds a month.

If you really want to get into reloading, don't do it to save money. Do it because you want to.

But, if youre planning on doing any competitive shooting, and you plan on shooting a bunch, reloading can definitely save money.

I did my own cost analysis, based on assumptions that fit MY criteria (YMMV) and figured it would take me about 5,000 rounds (about 5 months worth of shooting) to save enough over the cost of buying factory ammo to pay for a nice Dillon XL650 with an auto case feeder. This forum thoroughly poopooed my analysis saying that you should only reload for the love of reloading.

If it weren't for the sheer pleasure of knowing that every round I put down the barrel of my competition pistols is made consistently and correctly, and at a cost savings over factory, I'd hate pulling that damned handle.

You decide for yourself. But, Idefinetly wouldn't get my 2nd choice. Always buy the one you want, or you'll just regret it later, cheaper is never cheaper when it comes to buying something you want!
 

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I think that I would shoot weekly if the price was right . Also I'm not opposed to a good $olid purchase the first time . Being mechanically inclined I feel like I could handle whatever is considered best by you with experience . Keep up your recommendations . I like the input . It seems like a $1,000 purchase can be recouped in a little over a year if I can reload .45 lead for .15 each vs. Walmart at .33 which is never in stock .
I use my Dillon for handgun amo, works fine. I use my RCBS 4x4 for rifle amo because it's made of steel and it works fine
 

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Those quantities (200/mo) are definitely in the single stage capability range, but also enough to pay for a progressive press in less than two years, perhaps less than one. I'm not a personal fan of turret presses.

The Lee Classic Cast (iron/steel), Redding Big Boss II, Forster Co-Ax and Redding Ultramag single stage presses (listed in order of increasing cost, last 2 are pretty close) are all highly recommended. Current model RCBS Rockchucker, Hornady, or Lyman are good presses, but have not kept up with the above listed competition. There was a time when the Rockchucker was the gold standard in single stage presses, but they are now made in China, and quality has suffered substantially.

Among progressive presses, I would recommend the Hornady LNL AP, Dillon 650, or RCBS 2000 (w/auto-indexing), in order of preference, with the LNL AP being favorite.

Andy
 
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