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I'm looking into getting into small-scale reloading. Starting off with .30-30, then moving on to other calibers (.303 Brit, .45-70. maybe .303 Savage or .45-75 WCF), jacketed and cast bullets.

I don't have room for a reloading bench these days, so the fact that both are compact is nice.

The 310 has some history behind it. Is it usable with the other calibers I mentioned?

Any suggestions?

Mario
 

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Lee hand press? I've got one, it works great.
 

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Can't speak on the Lyman 310, no experience with that one.

Will second gb_in_tx on the Lee Hand Press though. Own and use one at various times to load 25-20, 256 Winchester Magnum, .38 and .357, and 6.5X55mm Swedish. Don't think I've tried to use it for my .303 Brit yet, but wouldn't hesitate.

Good luck with whatever you choose.
 

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Lee loader- Requires mallet, moderately expensive, limited calibers available, neck size only.
Very slow operation. You use mallet to drive cases in the die for sizing, to prime cases, seat bullets, and crimp. Crimps are dependent on strength of mallet strike. It comes with a load chart and powder measure.
See: http://www.leeprecision.com/cgi/catalog/browse.cgi?1298882745.1619=/html/catalog/cleeloader.html

Lyman 310 Tool- Expensive, few calibers available, neck size only.
Slow operation. You use pliers like handles with a set of 5 non-standard dies to load cartridges. Dies are expensive and fit only one size of handles (large, or small).
See: http://www.lymanproducts.com/lyman/dies/lyman-310-tool.php

Lee Hand press- Inexpensive, uses standard dies from many manufacturers, can full length size.
Faster operation, less fatiguing. Later, when you need a bench mounted press, the dies and accessories you bought will transfer to it. If you buy Lee dies, they will come with a chart and powder measure so you can start simply.
The newer Lee hand presses have the breech lock feature so you can change dies FAST!
See: http://www.leeprecision.com/cgi/cat...745.1619=/html/catalog/rlpress1.html#Reloader

The lee hand press is the way to go!
M.
 

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I have been reloading for only a year, so my experience is limited;

I use the Lee Classic in 5 different calibers, it is slow, but handy to take to the range and load 3 on the tailgate or bench, shoot them, load 3 more and on and on.

Lee Classic works for me, but I only shoot about 800 to 1000 rounds of rifle, and just over 1000 rounds of reloads a year in handgun.

Action pistol shoots, and plate shoots I generally use factory to build up brass, and it's a little tough to keep up with handgun rounds with a Lee Classic, 'specially 9mm.
 

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I have used a lee reloader to reload 30-30 , 45-70, and 30-06 for about 3 years now and have loaded about a thousand rounds at least. Have not had any problems. After you get the feel of slowly poudinf your bullet into the case without damageing the case you will be all sqared away. I use remington 170 grain core loked 30-30 bullets in hornady,frontier, and winchester cases. I use 34 grains of winchester 760 powder. I use a lee 2.2 dipper. I recomend if you go this route to also puchase a powder scale to double check what you are doing and a set of lee dippers. a digital caliper would also be usefull. This list of stuff can be had for under 100 dollars. Thats my 2cents. good luck, have fun and be safe!
 

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I started out reloading this time with the Lee hand press for 444 and 45/70. Works great, doesn't take any room up but does take some muscles. Interestingly enough the 444 was the hardest for me. The 45/70 was a breeze.

I would recommend this setup for anyone wanting to get in cheap to start. I've moved onto a press for higher production rate now but it was a great place to start.
 

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shooter69 said:
I have used a lee reloader to reload 30-30 , 45-70, and 30-06 for about 3 years now and have loaded about a thousand rounds at least. Have not had any problems. After you get the feel of slowly poudinf your bullet into the case without damageing the case you will be all sqared away. I use remington 170 grain core loked 30-30 bullets in hornady,frontier, and winchester cases. I use 34 grains of winchester 760 powder. I use a lee 2.2 dipper. I recomend if you go this route to also puchase a powder scale to double check what you are doing and a set of lee dippers. a digital caliper would also be usefull. This list of stuff can be had for under 100 dollars. Thats my 2cents. good luck, have fun and be safe!
Ever had a primer pop? That's the only drawback to the Lee Loader.

The first time it made me pee in my pants, now I just giggle a little...
 

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YEP! I forgot to mention to wear a michael jackson glove when you reprime. I haven't poped a primer in over a year or so, but i still wear a glove when i reprime. It could rattle ya abit!
 

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I started out with a Lee Loader and really like it. I still use it to neck size sometimes.

Big drawback for me with the Lee Loader is that I could NOT get any crimp on a jacketed bullet without an honest to goodness crimp groove. I was trying to load Rem Cor-Lokt bullets and there was NO way to get a good enough crimp to keep the bullets from being pushed back into the case under the pressure of the recoil and the magazine tube spring. The case will crumple long before the Lee Loader forces its own crimp groove in a jacketed bullet. If you use the Lee Loader you absolutely must have a real crimp groove in your bullet or you can forget about using it in a tubular magazine rifle.

So, I got a Lee hand press and the Lee Factory Crimp Die. I am very happy with the hand press and feel no need or desire for a bench mounted press.

I still really like my old Lee Loader but the hand press allows me to full length size, apply a good crimp any place on any bullet, use a universal de-priming die, and add a sizing/lubing die if I ever want to shoot cast bullets.

Never used a Lyman 310 so can't comment on it. But I think the Lee hand press is going to be far more superior/versatile than either the Lee Loader or Lyman 310
 

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mario said:
I'm looking into getting into small-scale reloading. Starting off with .30-30, then moving on to other calibers (.303 Brit, .45-70. maybe .303 Savage or .45-75 WCF), jacketed and cast bullets.

I don't have room for a reloading bench these days, so the fact that both are compact is nice.

The 310 has some history behind it. Is it usable with the other calibers I mentioned?

Any suggestions?

Mario
I've used the Lee hammer the shells tool and I hate it with a purple passion.


I do like the Lyman 310 tool and have several handles and quite a few die sets. You should be able to get dies for the 30-30 and they just might let you squeak by with the .303 Savage which is a true 30 caliber using .308" bullets. All I can say about the other cartridges though, with maybe an exception for the 45-70 is lot of luck.
There are times when I feel like doing it the old fashioned way when loading cast bullets for my 30-30. it's kind of cool doing it the the way my Great-grandfather did for his M94 carbine while hearding sheep in the Northern Nevada desert. I ninhetited his dies and tong tool when they came with his gun upon my father's death. I even have the mold he used to make his bullets, probably over a sagebrush campfire. I load most 30-30 ammo using modern tools, but when I load for that rifle made in 1911, it's the tong tool,dipper and bullets cast using a ladle. Kind of a nice way to go back in time wothout having a time machine. 8)
Used properly and with care, those tong tools will make very accurate ammo.

As much as I like the Lyman tool I too would suggest the Lee hand press that uses conventional loading dies. It would be a lot more convenient.
Paul B.
 

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When I first started reloading metallic cartridges on my own it was for a Ruger Blackhawk in 41 Mag using a Lee Loader. If it's all you've got, you can still make some decent ammo. But there sure are easier ways to do it.
 

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80 HP I dont see who you figure economy.

Lee loader less than $25. You need a mallet, I got mine at Harbor Freight for $6 bucks.
I use the 45-70 loader, it makes them all the same size.
You hand dont get tired and hurt from squeezing like either hand press
Neck sizing is not a bad thing.

Lee hand press, is $15 bucks more, you need dies, a scale or dippers.

Lyman 310 costs WAY MORE as much as the Lee hand press, and you still need the other stuff. Both Lee are a better option

BTW with any of them, you also need a caliber, a case trimmer, and neck ream.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Mario,

You want to buy the loader first. Read the load data sheet, then decide which powder & bullets you want to use.

If you are going to make a lot of ammo, the hand presses save time, are more involved, and the seating is only as good as the guy who seats them. The OAL can very, unlike the Lee Classic loader.
 

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Pard's post reminded me that Lee has the instructions for the Lee loader and Hand Press on their website as pdf's.
You can downloadl them and read the instructions to learn how to operate the tools before you buy one.
Lee hand press http://www.leeprecision.com/cgi-data/instruct/90685.pdf
Lee loader http://www.leeprecision.com/cgi-data/instruct/RE1422.pdf
As I said earlier,
"Lee Hand press- Inexpensive, uses standard dies from many manufacturers, can full length size.
Faster operation, less fatiguing. Later, when you need a bench mounted press, the dies and accessories you bought will transfer to it. If you buy Lee dies, they will come with a chart and powder measure so you can start simply.
The newer Lee hand presses have the breech lock feature so you can change dies FAST!"
If you go the Hand press route, you wont have to buy new dies when you upgrade to a bench mounted press.
M.
 

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"I use the Lee Classic in 5 different calibers, it is slow, but handy to take to the range"

Goodness! We have a different opinion of "handy to take to the range"! The Lee Classic is a cast iron press that's great for a permanent bench tool but I sure wouldn't want to haul one to the range very often.

Lyman's excellant 310 tools and complete sets of dies can be difficult to find and costly when you do. It and the Lee Loader kits are fine but...both tools are inflexible. They are only useful for cases fired in a given rifle and then only until you need to FL size the cases.

Anyone wanting a small, compact, low cost tool to do small amounts of reloading will be well served with a Lee "Reloader" press. Same price as the Handpress, very strong, uses conventional dies. Mount the little press to a 16" piece of 2x4 and C clamp it to whatever is handy. Add a Lee AutoPrime hand primer and it's all cheap enough, but very flexable, easy to use and easily transportable.
 

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Fuzzball said:
"I use the Lee Classic in 5 different calibers, it is slow, but handy to take to the range"

Goodness! We have a different opinion of "handy to take to the range"! The Lee Classic is a cast iron press that's great for a permanent bench tool but I sure wouldn't want to haul one to the range very often.

Lyman's excellant 310 tools and complete sets of dies can be difficult to find and costly when you do. It and the Lee Loader kits are fine but...both tools are inflexible. They are only useful for cases fired in a given rifle and then only until you need to FL size the cases.

Anyone wanting a small, compact, low cost tool to do small amounts of reloading will be well served with a Lee "Reloader" press. Same price as the Handpress, very strong, uses conventional dies. Mount the little press to a 16" piece of 2x4 and C clamp it to whatever is handy. Add a Lee AutoPrime hand primer and it's all cheap enough, but very flexable, easy to use and easily transportable.
Huh, Learn something e'ry day:

http://www.leeprecision.com/html/catalog/cleeloader.html
 

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Well like to put in my two cents. If this hasn't been mention try the Lee Breech lock hand press kit
http://www.midwayusa.com/ Just type in the product#


#
Lee Breech Lock Hand Press Kit
Product #: 650614

#
Lee Breech Lock Hand Press
Product #: 665540
 

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Of the choices you listed go with the Lee tool. It is cheap, self contained and will neck size your brass and the dipper will dispense an adequete amount of 4895 powder to load hunting ammo. The Lee loader is also easier to use than a 310 tool. It pains me to say it but the Lee Hand squeezer press is even a better way to go. It uses full length sizing dies but is a few dollars more and would require that you purchase a powder scale.
 

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When I lived in an apartment I didn't have space to keep my standard loading bench so I mounted a small Lee C frame press on piece of 2 X 4 and clamped it to the kitchen table. I used Lee dippers that I double checked with my RCBS 5-0-5 scale. All the equipment and components fit in a small storage tote.
 
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