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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok.guys I'm looking to pick up the pace of my production some so its time for a second press. Right now I only gave my lyman crusher single stage. I reload .25-06, .30-06, .35 rem, .338wm, .380acp, .45acp, and .357. Any input on this would be great
 

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What quantity do you shoot? How does that break down for handgun and rifle? I load the majority of my rifle on a single stage and handgun on a Dillon SDB, but I shoot thousands more handgun cartridges than bottle necks every year. A couple years back, I fell into a deal that couldn't be passed up on a Dillon 550, but it rarely gets used. It isn't much faster than batch processing on the single stage for bottle necks. Unless I'm loading a large quantity of a single load in a sitting, I don't see the pay off.

If your usage is pretty balanced, a turret press might be a good compromise.
 

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The time I spend switching dies is inconsequential. It is case prep (lubing, trimming, etc...) and powder measuring that eats up all my time. A new press won't help with these steps. If I wanted to step up the process, I would get a good case prepping station and auto powder measure first.
 

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I'm kind of with Imashooter on this... I have both a single stage and a 5-station progressive Hornady ProJector (the predecessor to the current LockNLoad.) I load 5.56mm, 7.62mm, .30-06, .30-30 and .348WCF rifle rounds, but resize on the single stage, tumble them to get the lube off, and then assemble them on the progressive. I could probably do it just as fast on the single stage, but the progressive is indoors and the single stage is in the very cold garage.

Now, if you are talking handgun loads... well, a progressive is the way to go. I reload everthing from .380ACP to the .45's and the progressive really helps in the time department. Most progressives are 4-stage, I bought the Hornady because it was a 5-station... resize/expander/powder drop/bullet seat/crimp. You can get a powder through expander die and work on a 4-station press, though, but I prefer the 5-banger.

I like my Hornady very much, once you get it dialed in. The new-and-improved LNL is supposed to be everything the ProJector was and then some, and I suspect it is a very good press.
 

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I'm with Charlie98 on this issue. I have 2 single stage presses: a RCBS Rockchucker mounted on a bench, and a small portable Lyman that I can take outside or to the range and C-clamp to a table. I also have the older Hornady Projector progressive 5 stage press.

I load all my bottleneck rifle cartridges on the single stage. Same goes for handgun ammo that I load in small batches, like my .50AE or .500 Wyoming Express, .300 MiniWhisper, and oddball loads. However, for production of large volumes of .38 Special, .357 Magnum, 9mm, .45ACP or .45Colt, it's hard to beat a progressive. But a progressive is a tempermental machine, and requires adjustment, cleaning and care in use. It also requires that you pay attention to what you're doing. I guess that goes for all handloading, but on a progressive it's easier to mess up a step.

Over the past few days, I've been virtually snowed in. So I used the progressive to load up 300 rounds of .45ACP and 300 rounds of 9mm, and it was quick work. Practice first on some dummy rounds, and you'll soon love a progressive for real production.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I'm really looking into the lee turret presses
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Also some people mentioned the auto charge. There are a bunch of brands ranging from $200-$400
 

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I load 38 super 40s&w 45 acp and 9mm all with my Lee classic 4 hole press I couldn't ask for a better set up. I have all the calibers set up in their own die plates and switching rounds takes about 30 seconds. I have two Pro Disc powder measures and it sure helps speed up the process. All my dies both rifle ,I also have a Lee single stage,and pistol have given me no problems.
 

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I've been reloading 30 years now. A year and a half ago I bought a Lee Classic Turret press. I love it, I wish I'd bought one of these long before now. I now have about a dozen turrets with my dies set up permanently. I highly recommend this press. I will never go back to using a single station press for most of my reloading.
 

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Two months ago I chucked my rockchucker.

The Lee classic turret press has been great for me. I have a Dillon 550B and like it for handgun, but was less than enthused with bottle necks. I just loaded 500 30-30 with my Lee and did it easily in an evening. I also have an electronic powder dispenser and you can rig it up pretty much the way you want. I like not having to readjust my dies and have an inexpensive turret for each caliber. Very cost effective. If I had gotten this earlier, I might not have gotten the Dillon.

Beware though, if you by one. You need to buy separate accessories as well.
 

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I have a 550 and two 650's to satisfy my straight wall handgun habit. For bottle neck rifle, I use the Lee Custom Turret. I'll size it, pull the case, wipe it, prime it on a single stage, then back on the turret for charging, seating, and crimping.
 

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For your collection of cartridges a progressive would be a mistake, much to clostly and slow to change calibers. The ONLY practical press change would be Lee Classic Turret.

IF your measure and operating technique is right, you can drop plenty accurate powder charges staight into the cases without weighing. A digital dumpster is a costly gimmick that actually cuts very little time off a typical reloading session for most people, especially so for handgun or hunting rifle ammo.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Fuzzball said:
For your collection of cartridges a progressive would be a mistake, much to clostly and slow to change calibers. The ONLY practical press change would be Lee Classic Turret.

IF your measure and operating technique is right, you can drop plenty accurate powder charges staight into the cases without weighing. A digital dumpster is a costly gimmick that actually cuts very little time off a typical reloading session for most people, especially so for handgun or hunting rifle ammo.
right well the progressive is more than i want to bite the bullet on right now anyways. i wanted to get the lee manual since i didnt already have one. all my local stores wanted $30 after tax so i went to midway and spent $34 and got it with their cframe press. this gives me another single stage press that i plan to use with my ram prime for that purpose. in addition to this i have my lyman crusher single stage. not much of an improvement but its better than a single press. i have been scouring ebay for the lee presses and they seem to be going for like $10 under a new one once you pay shipping.

whats the difference between the turret and classic turret? is it simply construction or materials? like alluminum and cast iron or something?
which would be better to get?

now as far as powder measures go i have been using a lyman #55 measure and it works well except for extruded powders but they dont meter too well anyways. i did however get a good deal on a rcbs little dandy on ebay with 4 rotors. i would like to find some more around the grains that i load my pistols in so im going to keep scouring. i like the sound of the auto throwers but they are big bucks. smart reloader offers one under $200 but i dont know much about the company. been looking at the lee auto disk but dont know much about that either.

essentially i want to get a good couple presses setup which i am on my way inthat department. and also have a few powder measure on hand. also right now i have a lyman 1000xp digital scale but i dont always trust it, so i want a second digital scale or a good balance beam, along with a back up set of calipers. i have a digital set now. my tumbler works well also.

my least fav part of reloading owever is all the prep as far as chamfering and deburing. i have always trimmed all my brass and have now been told not to trim my pistol brass which would save my hands. but i was looking into the rcbs trim mate and also lyman just came out with one of their own. any ways, ill take all the input i can get guys. also if anyone has stuff im looking for and can help out just shoot me a pm.


everyones help is much appreciated

As a note, I had originally entered the hobby for sole purposes of highly accurate ammo, and the accomplishment of killing game with my own loads. Figured the time I put into the loads I would want to be a better shot. Now I have joined a local gun club with a 24/7 indoor pistol range and a separate rifle and skeet range. needless to say I'm going to work on my shooting skills and shoot a lot. So I recently acquired 1000 95 grain round noses from rainier balistics and 500 185 grn rn for my 45acp. And there sending me a bunch of samples for all my pistols in the mail.
 

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If you want to use your powder dump, just order a powder through expander die or one of the attachements that Lyman makes for their press. I occasionally use my RCBS the same way. I have the new Lee Auto disc measure, but have not broken it out because of precison measure with my RCBS. May end up using it just to try it out. I also use the new primer (lee safety prime) . Once it is adjusted, works great. Don't have to separately handle the cases just to prime. I can load bottlenecks like a demon with this setup.
 

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whats the difference between the turret and classic turret?
"Classic" for Lee means cast iron. I believe the non-Classics are aluminum or alloy. Possibly the non-Classics also have smaller diameter rams and smaller openings? Not sure.
I have a Lee Classic single stage and it works great. Spent primers drop through the ram into a plastic tube, no muss no fuss. Considered the Classic Turret but with Hornady Lock-n-Load bushings I can switch dies in seconds and they keep their adjustment, plus there is more room to work around the die. Only thing I needed to do was secure the wooden knob onto the handle bar with Gorilla Glue because it slipped off under pressure. Price difference between single and turret Classics is not much, and either does not cost much more than the non-Classics.
 

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Dr. A said:
If you want to use your powder dump, just order a powder through expander die or one of the attachements that Lyman makes for their press. I occasionally use my RCBS the same way. I have the new Lee Auto disc measure, but have not broken it out because of precison measure with my RCBS. May end up using it just to try it out. I also use the new primer (lee safety prime) . Once it is adjusted, works great. Don't have to separately handle the cases just to prime. I can load bottlenecks like a demon with this setup.
Many of my dies were the Lee die set that had the powder thru expander die. This die made the turret press much more useful as I could mount a powder measure onto the press. Lee also makes a spacer accessory that works with the powder thru expander die that raises the powder measure high enough to clear the other dies on the turret. After getting my turret press set up with a powder measure etc and I ran a batch of .44 mag ammo thru it, I fell in love with this setup and the turret press. Like someone else said, I no longer need or want a progressive.

IIRC, someone sells an adapter that will let you mount a Lyman 55 powder measure onto a powder thru expander die...check out Lyman or Sinclair for the adapter. Speaking of Sinclair, they sell a great adapter for mounting a plastic bottle type of powder reservoir to the Lyman 55. I bought the adapter and bottle, love it.
 

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I still reload all my rifle on a single stage press after 36 years of reloading, but I have a progressive Dillon SDB press for pistols and it is wonderful and Dillon is an outstanding company. 8) 8) 8)
 

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janott said:
Dillon is an outstanding company. 8) 8) 8)
+1...couldn't agree more. I've talked with Mike Dillon in the past. Great company, excellent products. One of the best catalogs in the industry... :p
 

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SkookumJeff said:
+1...couldn't agree more. I've talked with Mike Dillon in the past. Great company, excellent products. One of the best catalogs in the industry... :p
I have talked to Dillon a number of times and they have alway been helpful. I purchased my SDB press used and Dillon has still replaced a worn out part and even sent a primer feed up-grade to me free of charge. They have my business. 8) 8) 8)
 
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