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New to reloading
Discussion regarding the reloading of ammunition and tuning of loads for accuracy
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84jeepj10
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Joined: Apr 18, 2007
Posts: 66
Location: Ft. Hood, TX

PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2007 5:09 pm    Post subject: New to reloading Reply with quote

I just bought a Lee Classic Loader 30-06 Springfield online. It should be here tomarrow, I can't wait. Will be reloading for my Tikka T3 LSS. GOt a couple questions:
I know they make chamfering tools, but I have a hex drill/screwdriver bit set that has a countersink bit in it. It looks alot like the chanfering tools you get for reloading and will fit in my screwdriver. I've tried it on a junk shell and it puts a nice shallow chamfer on the inside of a shell easily with minimal metal removal, will this work for a chamfering tool? I made my shell holder the way I wanted out of a scrap plank of wood by drilling 1/2" holes in it 3/4" deep. I've got a Lee powder scoop set on the way but don't know how accurate it will be. What else should I get tool wise, keeping cost in mind?

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Vince
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PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2007 6:25 pm    Post subject: Re: New to reloading Reply with quote

Gidday 84jeepj10.
I think you are going down a path that, although allowing you to reload cartridges, will not give you the best or most accurate cartridges that you could produce.

The Lee Classic Loader is a pretty good very LOW volume loading system but personally I would go up a step or two to a more efficient loading system. If you like the ease and convenience of loading pretty much anywhere then I would be seriously considering the Lee Hand Press (available in a kit for about $US41). I think I saw where you live on base so maybe a fixed press may not be an option, but if it is, there are many good single stage presses out there that will produce reloads that are the equal of, and usually much better than, factory loads. Your idea of a shell holder made by drilling into wood doesn't sound a particularly good idea. Wood will wear quickly and will not hold a case snuggly, resulting in possible problems with the reloading process.

I think that your idea of using your screwdriver attachment should be ok, but for the sake of a couple of dollars you can get a purpose designed tool that will chamfer both the inside and outside of a case neck, same for a primer pocket cleaner...double ended and cheap as chips.

If your intention is to produce a reasonable quantity (50 or more) of reloads I think that your best option is a bench mounted "O" Frame press of the brand of your choice. If you are only intending to produce small quantities (10-20) then have a look at the Lee Hand Press.

Lee Precision

Good luck mate, and let us know how your reloading goes. If you have any further questions, which you no doubt will, give us a yell.

Cheers, Vince

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Illegitimi non carborundum
(Never let the bastards grind you down)

Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly. Leave the rest to God.

"Nulla Si Fa Senza Volonta."
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wncchester
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PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2007 6:35 pm    Post subject: Re: New to reloading Reply with quote

I like your money saving ideas, they are ingenous and sound.

If your Lee Loader kit is complete you need nothing more at this point. Perhaps a good loading manual (Lyman), a powder scale and Lee AutoPrime tool should be on your list of "next to purchase" items. Capping with the original loader is tedious and playing with powders without actually knowing what the charge weights are is less than ideal. (But it's safe IF you follow Lee's instructions for powders and dipper size.)

Shoot a lot, have fun and you will soon be as hooked on reloading as the rest of us!
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sniper
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PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2007 8:16 pm    Post subject: Re: New to reloading Reply with quote

Hellloo, jeep84j10, and welcome!

Reloading: What shall we say about it?? Great, frustrating, and thoroughly enjoyable. (when things go right) Mad Very Happy

A Fine and Pleasant Madness. Cool

You have started at a good place. The tools you have will work in fine fashion, and produce good ammunition to boot. I borrowed my brother-in-law's Lee tool when I first started reloading

The dipper sets are good. I use mine to dispense the initial charge weight into my scale, then use my trickler to bring it right to where I want it. (Don't forget at least one reloading manual, and please read it, not just the load selections .) BUT, for general use, all you need is to choose a dipper that throws a charge somewhere the middle of the manual's recommendations, and have at it.

Lee dippers aren't gnat's nut fine, but will throw a serviceable charge that will be acceptably accurate and absolutely will not bounce off a deer or other critter. The idea is to have fun, and enjoy what you do.

I would wager you will soon tire of the hammer, hammer, hammer of the original Lee tool, and wish to upgrade to something quieter.

A good used single stage press and a set of (new) dies will not require mortgaging the firstborn. Carbide dies are a goodness for pistol rounds.

A Lee priming tool is a good investment, too.

As was mentioned, Use a proper shellholder. You will thank yourself.

Your countersink will work just fine inside of the case. Use it by hand for more control. Lee has a little debur and chamfer tool that is both inexpensive and effective, and they have a power attachment that will work with their trimmers, too.

I found one problem to be the little lip of metal that forms on the outside of the case during trimming. Probably in the inside too, which is why you need to chamfer the inside. You can feel it with your fingernail (the outsside, not the inside, unless you have small fingers! Shocked )

That needs to be removed, imho, because the outside needs attention , just like the inside.

When (not if) you get stuck, there are lots of fellows here that know and are willing to help. Don't be a stranger! Very Happy
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roklok
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PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2007 8:43 pm    Post subject: Re: New to reloading Reply with quote

If I understand you correctly, your "shellholder" is a loading block just to hold your cases between steps of the reloading process, not the shellholder used with a set of dies to engage the head of the cartridge case. If this is the case your idea should work just fine.
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84jeepj10
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Location: Ft. Hood, TX

PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2007 11:40 pm    Post subject: Re: New to reloading Reply with quote

My next tool purchase will be a plastic head mallet for the primer and bullet seating process'. Also that clear hammer looking thing you use to beat out a bullet from it's casing, in case I mess up, or am unloading brass. A case trimmer, any ideas on a cheap n' good one? A mechanical poder scale and Lee perfect powder measure. Power trickler and I think I'll be set for a while til I get the hang of it. I'm only gonna be loading about 20 at a time, pretty low volume as I don't get out to the range that often or for very long at a time. I'm goin cheap and minimal for now because of buget and I may end up not liking it, also I'm in the Army and could be moving anytime so I need to be able to pack light and quick.
What's the best loading book to start out with? Something easy to follow with plenty of valuable info, at a reasonable price. Remember I'm only loading for one 30-06 sprg rifle so I don't need every load in the world.

For my first load I want to put a Sierra GameKing .30cal 165grn HPBT starting about 2700fps. Will be using Reington brass previousely fired once from my rifle, and Federal #210 primer. What kind of powder should I start off with, I plan on sticking with 165grn bullets for all around shooting/hunting? I just neeed the type of powder to get (1lb can) that will load what I want, must be accurate, and especially consistant.

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84jeepj10
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PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2007 11:42 pm    Post subject: Re: New to reloading Reply with quote

Also, I've heard thatwhen using some powders you may not fill the full volume of the case once the bullet is seated, and that depending on how the powder is distributed inside the casing you could have a large variance in velocity. Is this true, how do I avoid this? Confused

What are the min/max tolerances in case length I should stick to for a 30-06sprg? I have a good set of calipers I can accurately measure within .001". I used to work in a machine shop before I joined the Army so I know about tolerances and am a perfectionist when it comes to my firearms.

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roklok
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PostPosted: Fri May 04, 2007 12:20 am    Post subject: Re: New to reloading Reply with quote

30-06 max case length is 2.494" trim to 2.484". I use a RCBS trim pro trimmer and it works great but for your purposes the Lee case trimmer might be the ticket as it is inexpensive, doesnt have to be mounted to a bench, and is pre set for the correct case length. I have experienced more consistent velocities in some calibers when the powder is slightly compressed by the bullet which is how most of my centerfire loads end up anyhow. Very few factory loads are this way though, most you can hear the powder shaking inside, and it is not nessessary for a good load, most loads will have the case nearly full. As for powder, everyone has their favorites, I use IMR and Alliant propellants almost exclusively. I dont load for the 30-06 yet, just bought an 06 last fall, but a good starting point would be Alliant Reloder 19 or IMR 4831. Look at Alliant's and IMR's websites for loading suggestions. I am quite fond of Alliants Reloder line of powders, just worked up a load in my .270 with RL 22 that is giving me 200FPS more than my previous load with IMR. Have fun!!
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84jeepj10
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PostPosted: Fri May 04, 2007 10:54 pm    Post subject: Re: New to reloading Reply with quote

Thanks for the tip. I just got my Lee Classic Reloader in the mail today, went and purchased a rubber mallet to use with it. Have lready de-capped my once fired Remington brass and used my makeshift chamfering tool to chamfer all the empty cases. I see what yall were saying about the primer pocket carbon buildup, for now I'll use a small screwdriveras a scraper to clean them out until I buy a profer tool. Havent checked my case lengths yet but they've only been fired once, should I be worrying about stretch yet?
The loader came with a one page pocket load chart that has about 50 or so loads on it, though it doesn't list any loads in 165 grn, curious as I thought 165 grn was a popular enough load to be mentioned on here. Until I get a reloading manual, and other than the HuntingHut.com load database, are there any commercial load charts online?
wtf

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roklok
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PostPosted: Fri May 04, 2007 11:36 pm    Post subject: Re: New to reloading Reply with quote

Alliant's website has load data for 165 grain. Your cases should be fine for several loadings before they get too long. I was reloading for several years before I bought a case trimmer and calipers, never had a problem, although now I trim my necked cases every loading just so everything is consistent.
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fireball 3
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PostPosted: Sat May 05, 2007 7:59 am    Post subject: Re: New to reloading Reply with quote

hello 84jeepj10, go to hodgdon.com. they have load data for 30-06 165gr in different powders. the site is data.hodgdon.com . it will bring up the site then just follow the bouncing ball. as for a chamfer tool, i think i have an extra one i can send you. pm me if you want it. dave Very Happy Wave

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roklok
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PostPosted: Sat May 05, 2007 2:02 pm    Post subject: Re: New to reloading Reply with quote

Personally, I would get a powder scale before I would worry with a case trimmer, as a scale in my opinion would be more beneficial to getting consistent and accurate loads. There are lots of good loads out there that are not going to be listed in your lee loader for your powder dippers.
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84jeepj10
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PostPosted: Sat May 05, 2007 5:16 pm    Post subject: Re: New to reloading Reply with quote

I just won the bid for a Lyman 1000 Powder scale on Ebay.com! Got it for $27.50 (including shipping). Heck of a deal I believe. Also bidding on a Lee Perfect Powder measure and some Remington PSP 165grn .30cal bullets.

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Vince
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PostPosted: Sat May 05, 2007 7:35 pm    Post subject: Re: New to reloading Reply with quote

roklok wrote:
If I understand you correctly, your "shellholder" is a loading block just to hold your cases between steps of the reloading process, not the shellholder used with a set of dies to engage the head of the cartridge case. If this is the case your idea should work just fine.

I agree whole heartedly with roklok. If the wood that you drilled out is a loading block then it is more than adequate.

As a shellholder though....not suitable.

Cheers, Vince

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Illegitimi non carborundum
(Never let the bastards grind you down)

Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly. Leave the rest to God.

"Nulla Si Fa Senza Volonta."
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84jeepj10
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PostPosted: Sat May 05, 2007 8:45 pm    Post subject: Re: New to reloading Reply with quote

I meant shellholder as in a place to safely stand shells on end in between reloading processes, and to keep track of how many I've done. Sorry, don't know the lingo yet. BTW what is the clear plastic hammer looking thing? I think you put loaded cases in it to beat out a seated bullet.

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