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  #1  
Old 03-19-2017, 07:17 PM
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I am a noob to reloading, I have 1 stupid question


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So I am looking at a Lee or RCBS press. When I get dies do I have to get them from the manufacture of the press or are they interchangeable?

Meaning does the Screw Thread match up on all dies or are they only matched to the manufacture? If I am gonna buy a press, should I only buy the die from the manufacture of the press?

I know stupid question but I searched and search and nobody else has asked it as far as I found.
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  #2  
Old 03-19-2017, 07:28 PM
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Welcome Storm

Most modern presses are threaded for 7/8x14 dies, so dies are interchangeable.

I highly recommend the RCBS for the press and the dies. Presses last forever so get a good one. also I'd save by buying a used RCBS
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  #3  
Old 03-19-2017, 07:47 PM
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Get Modern Reloading by Richard Lee
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  #4  
Old 03-19-2017, 07:54 PM
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Cool, I bought the book but that was last major question. I am reading the book before I buy. Buy for some reason I cannot find that answer. If I can find a used RCBS I will jump on it. I have been looking for one for a bit.
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  #5  
Old 03-19-2017, 10:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by storms View Post
So I am looking at a Lee or RCBS press. When I get dies do I have to get them from the manufacture of the press or are they interchangeable?

Meaning does the Screw Thread match up on all dies or are they only matched to the manufacture? If I am gonna buy a press, should I only buy the die from the manufacture of the press?

I know stupid question but I searched and search and nobody else has asked it as far as I found.

Ought to look at the Forster CoAx, it's an exceptional press and when you get into loading for accuracy, it's the best going. US Army Marksmanship program uses a lot of them. Also very fast to change dies.

You don't need to use the makers dies, threads are compatible with most. I strongly suggest looking at Redding. RCBS hasn't been RCBS since ATK bought them and then sold them again.
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  #6  
Old 03-20-2017, 01:20 AM
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Think very carefully before you buy as something that one person swears by may not suit you at all .
Don't buy a used press as like all second hand stuff it can be abused . Save longer and buy a new one .
From the get go buy into a MODERN die system like Redding body die , lee collet neck die and Redding comp seater if available for your cartridge which we have no clue what it is .
This will fix so many potential problems because they can't occur with a better system .
A Fosters co-ax press does not have a 7/8x14 thread in the top so it limits what you can do with it .
Also it lacks leverage not having a compound system that goes easily over centre and that limits it's forming and swaging ability and collet dies work better in an RCBS anyway .
They do have fast die changing but the die sits on the lock ring only something I don't like and never will.
My advice is buy a RCBS Rock Chucker with the removable 7/8 x 14 head bushing and you can screw in lock and load bushings for fast die change , puts it back and you can screw in collet bullet pullers , pistol bullet swaging dies , jacket drawing dies , primer pocket swagers etc.
http://www.midwayusa.com/product/513...le-stage-press
It all reminds me of the great 6mm Remington V .243 Winchester debate before some peoples time but many old hands will remember .
The 6mm Remington was hands down the better cartridge in every respect but why did the .243 come out on top and the 6mmRem. died .
Simple , massive amounts of advertising and paying off gun writers to sell , sell , sell the .243 and talk down the 6mm Rem. into low sales .
We should always look very closely at products and how they function and make up our own minds if they suit us and no matter what it is if it does appeal to your needs then go for it and don't be swayed by salesmen .
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Last edited by Country; 03-20-2017 at 01:57 AM.
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  #7  
Old 03-20-2017, 02:10 AM
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get the rockchucker supreme ,,,everything you need except dies, powder cases and primers and bullets plus a rebate ....got mine for 300.00 and 75.00 rebate
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  #8  
Old 03-20-2017, 02:21 AM
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No stupid questions.

Not to be ghoulish but IMO buying EVERYTHING but the paint on the walls from a decades old reloader (deceased) can save you a small fortune AND set up time on the myriad of doo dads & must have doo hickies that you just have to try. I'm talking stools,bench, lights, manuals, personal notes, THE WORKS. PLUS it would be doing the widow a favor in many cases. Good lighting & a bench a good height so you don't have to stoop over it are huge, as the D would say.
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Old 03-20-2017, 02:34 AM
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+100 on the COAX, mine is 40+ years old now and will out last me even at it's current rte of abuse.

Garage sales, estate auctions, adds 'n freebies in the paper, word of mouth, NEVER quit looking for knick knacks for your reloading bench. A mate picked up a 100% all parts fully functional Oehaus (sp) for $5 at a garage sale, but he's the guy who falls in a bucket of poo and come out smelling like Old Spice (or a rose, depending)

RJ
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  #10  
Old 03-20-2017, 02:46 AM
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Welcome. The only stupid question is the one that is not asked.
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  #11  
Old 03-20-2017, 03:01 AM
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"ONLY" buy new, RUBBISH!

I bought my used Rockchucker press app 1980, from a guy that bought it used in 1976?? & bolted it to the tailgate of his pickup. GOOD well made presses with reasonable care can last generations. Mine, almost 40 years later, runs better than when I bought it. I did have to replace the plastic primer catcher tray. I'd say I got my moneys worth.
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  #12  
Old 03-20-2017, 03:13 AM
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Just because one person buys a good second hand press does not mean every second hand press is good. They can still work even though they could be worn and lost vital alignment .
You can buy a new one so cheap now why take a risk .
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  #13  
Old 03-20-2017, 03:19 AM
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That's a go way to end up with a pile of Rubbish

Quote:
Originally Posted by nachogrande View Post
Not to be ghoulish but IMO buying EVERYTHING but the paint on the walls from a decades old reloader (deceased) can save you a small fortune AND set up time on the myriad of doo dads & must have doo hickies that you just have to try. I'm talking stools,bench, lights, manuals, personal notes, THE WORKS. PLUS it would be doing the widow a favor in many cases. Good lighting & a bench a good height so you don't have to stoop over it are huge, as the D would say.
A new reloader is not experienced enough to buy that way he will not know what to buy and what to pass over and could end up with useless stuff he does not need . Not to mention old outdated dies .
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  #14  
Old 03-20-2017, 04:34 AM
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Get Lee's Modern Reloading latest edition book and Hornady's latest edition. I prefer the Lee Classic Cast press. I have had good experiences RCBS and Lee dies.
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  #15  
Old 03-20-2017, 04:56 AM
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Talking Stuff you don't need???

I wasn't aware that existed if reloading long enough. There always seems to be something you may not NEED, but sure want to try. True enough you may not be able to use, or have to replace say 1 die in a set, if you have to replace 1 or 2 dies you get out of a dozen or so, the net $ saved will cover it easily. Secondly with good advice found here a NEWB can get some advice on what to look for and avoid. If $ is no object, by all means buy everything new. TEHO. Piggybacking on the YEARS of time/work someone else invested just makes common sense to me. YES it's possible to get some rubbish, ALL of it ??? The odds are low IMO, & some of it could be pure treasure at penny's on the dollar. It should be fairly apparent whether the previous owner was a hack or a fastidious/skilled loader.

Last edited by nachogrande; 03-20-2017 at 05:07 AM.
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  #16  
Old 03-20-2017, 05:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by storms View Post
Cool, I bought the book but that was last major question. I am reading the book before I buy. Buy for some reason I cannot find that answer. If I can find a used RCBS I will jump on it. I have been looking for one for a bit.
Sites like eBay dot com have a section for reloading supplies. My last press, an RCBS Rockchucker, was an eBay buy many years ago. Do contact the seller(s) with any questions BEFORE bidding.

I've used my Rockchucker for so long that I can't even remember what I paid for it. The savings in buying used tends to be forgotten over long periods of use so don't hesitate if you find something new on sale.

I would recommend buying new carbide dies for loading pistol ammunition whenever possible and would not recommend buying used steel dies as steel dies can be scratched which will scratch your brass cases. I prefer buying and using new steel dies for reloading rifle ammunition.

IMO, RCBS has one of the best Customer Service groups in the industry. They have life time warranty on most of their products and should you happen to break a part, likely they will replace if for free and you don't even have to be the original owner.
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Last edited by Marshal Kane; 03-20-2017 at 05:22 AM.
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  #17  
Old 03-20-2017, 05:15 AM
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Rock chuckers are very good. You can usually find a start up set bundling the press, a manual, scales, trimmer and a few other odds and ends. I bought my start up stuff like that. You'll need a tumbler and media too, nothing fancy or expensive required. Add dies as needed, lots of new pieces and parts are available through the usual on-line sources.

I've RCBS and Lee dies and like them both. I also have Lyman and Hornady stuff and it all works fine.
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Last edited by 60DRB; 03-22-2017 at 10:05 AM.
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  #18  
Old 03-20-2017, 06:51 AM
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Lee Classic Cast press. Lee dies. Lee powder measure. Lee safety scale. Hornady electronic scale. Lee trimmers. Done. Your quest is over. As you gain familiarity and experience and want to "upgrade", you will get more of the same.
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  #19  
Old 03-20-2017, 06:58 AM
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I started hand loading twenty years ago with a Lee Anniversary Kit. Paid $75 for the whole thing. Loading for hunting rifles, I had no problems with the equipment. I found several loads that shot sub MOA. I didn't own a Micrometer/caliper until about two years ago. I still don't own a tumbler or an ultrasonic cleaner (though that may be next on my list).

Last fall the gunsmith down the street was selling some redundant equipment. I got a Rockchucker II for $30 and a RCBS balance beam scale for $20. The Rockchucker has a definite better feel to it, and coming from a gunsmith, I'm sure it's in great shape. Now I use my Rock Chucker for sizing, crimping, and pulling bullets, and I use the Lee for bullet seating.

Also, I prefer the old-style presses that screw the dies directly into the press, rather than the quick-turn bushings. This is simply because with six different calibers I load, it would cost a lot to buy that many sets of bushings. I find reloading relaxing, and I don't mind the extra few seconds to screw the die all the way in. You do, however, have to have good lock rings on the dies (I like the Hornady rings with set screws, and you can buy these cheap to replace the rings on Lee or other dies.)
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Last edited by Jakeway; 03-20-2017 at 07:00 AM.
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  #20  
Old 03-20-2017, 07:24 AM
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Buying a used press is about as sketchy as buying a used hammer, especially if it's from one of the no hassle makers like Hornady. There are others with great warranties and customer service, but I've only dealt with Hornady. I'm now in the market for a single stage and will wait a bit to catch a deal.

I shopped around before buying my LNL AP and used ones on ebay and craigslist were so close in price to new that I bought new at $400+. Then one day I stumbled on a used one for $150 including a die set and some other freebies, works as well as my new one and even if it had something broken Hornady would handle it for free. Craigslist, ebay, gunbroker...lots of places to find used stuff. Yard sales can be great as well as estate sales, and even if you don't see anything it's worth asking because some people don't think of or are afraid to sell gun stuff.

I got a ton of free components from a widow, I asked how much, she chuckled and said she'd pay me to take it away. About 5,000 bullets, about 18 lbs of powder, 5 plastic shoe boxes of brass, ammo, ammo cans, and other gun related stuff. So of course I had to ask if there were any guns to sell; scored 15 long guns, some really nice ones and only a couple cheapie .22s, for $1500. I sold 6 at buddy prices and got my investment back plus a mortgage payment +.

I have a friend who shops yard sales and always asks about other things; his gun, Rolex, and car collection is quite impressive. He's selling one of those cars this week and will net about $100k from it. At another yard sale he got a complete reloading set-up for free that he gave to one of my reloading partners. Another friend of mine got a free case of 7.62x39 ammo because they just didn't have a use for it. Some of it is luck, but a lot of it is just asking.
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