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Discussion Starter #1
I have been out of reloading for a long time and want to get back into it. My only problem is I have a very limited area to devote to this. I know Midway sells the portable reloading stand, and I have seen the hand presses. I just wanted to know how others handled the problem of limited area.
 

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Beartooth Regular
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Welcome to the forum Bubba 1.

For a dedicated setup:

I'm not in an apartment per se but I have a limited space for reloading also. My current setup is in a basement closet that runs under a finished stairwell. I simply ran 2 2X6 cats on each wall lag bolted through to studs and then laid 2X6 framing across them with 1/2" plywood screwed to the top. Makes a nice rigid surface to mount a press.


For a portable setup:

A hand press or better yet, a conventional press bolted to a piece of framing lumber and then inturn clamped to a solid surface like a wooden desk or such removable for storage once finished.

What is your arrangement as far as room in your apt?

On a side note be careful in apt complexes as smokeless powder storage is generally frowned upon so be sure you are not inadvertantly getting yourself in hot water.


Regards
 

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For a few years I was more a traverl and had no real long term home base. Some of my relaoding was doen with Lyman 310 "Tong Tools", but they have limitations (as in they won't rull length resize). Eventually, ended up with a basic foot locker, a press mounted on a square of hard wood, and C-clamps to mount it to anything solid enough to take it (pad to keep from scrathing the **** out of it). Just about everything fit in the footlocker, and I'd just prop it in the closet when I was done.

Could do the same thing today with a small light press (or even the Lee hand press) and end up with a smaller lighter box...with some ingenuity, can pre-drill the box to serve as the place to mount the ptess and use large bolts and wing nuts.

Still use the old 310 tools on occasion...toss them and a good scale in the back of the jeep and work up out a few combinations while I'm at the range...it's enough to give you a DIRECTION (heavy weight bullets or ligher weight? Boat tails or flat bases?...Remington or Winchester primers?...stuff like that).
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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I loaded a lot of rounds while living in an apartment, and all I did was just c-clamp a press to the kitchen counter. Just ordinary RCBS press, powder measure, and scale.

Gotta watch the amount of force you use on the press handle as those countertops tend to be a bit flimsy, but not a problem with handgun rounds and carbide dies. Just go easy when resizing bottleneck cartridges.

Using a small piece of plywood or something similar to stiffen up the countertop, and protect it, is a good idea.

I have used the Lyman 'tong' tool, and some small presses, BUT I honestly think that if you are going to be serious about reloading, a conventional press is the way to go. Otherwise it adds a lot of work and fatigue to the reloading process.

You can use a hand press or tong tool for a lot of the tasks, just have to be smart about it, like decapping or repriming, those activities don't take as much effort as resizing or even belling case mouths. But there is no substitute for a conventional press when you want to produce a lot of ammo in a short amount of time.

Good topic, and hope it helps any novice reloaders get started.
 

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In my situation, knew that someday I'd settle down, and when I did, didn't want a box of crap I'd never use again. So selected the items I used as a portable set up to be useful later on...didn't want a "throwaway" press. So I sacrificed some weight for a better...and here that would be larger and heavier than I needed at the time...press. Press is still with me; none of the stuff I had back then was given away or forgotten about once I did get a place of my own (with a dedicated workroom).

So the advice for you would be to be creative in how you mount it and store it...but not in what you buy.
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Have know many people who have sued the Black and Decker "Work Mate" as a mounting stand. It is designed to fold up and fit reasonably well in narrow places (under the bed...behind the headboard....bcak wall of the cloaset...etc.). They'd would either used c-clamps or wing nuts/bolts.
 

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Hi, Bubba:
My press is bolted to a 2X6 which is clamped onto a computer hutch. It's been clamped to several tables over the years, and I could bolt it directly to the table top of the hutch now, but it's handy the way it is. Use a 2X6 long enough to clamp at the back of the counter or table top takes the strain off the front.

I haven't used my B&D Work-Mate for a reloading stand, but I'm impressed by how it's stood up to some overloads.

Don't skimp on the case lube. That will get you into trouble fast when you're loading with a flimsy setup.

Bye
Jack
 

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Bubba,

I too have a press attached to a 2 X 4 and I C-clamp it to the kitchen counter on ocassion. I generaly use a Lee hand press. It handles everything I reload. This includes .45-70, .307 and .356. For the higher pressure cartridges you need a good case lube when using a hand press. Imperial sizing die wax really helps hand press operations. I form brass using the hand press also. .25-35's from standard .30-30 or .375 Winchester brass is no problem. .307's from .444 are also easy with good case lube. The hand press doew not take up much room.
Check the Lyman catalog for an idea on a wood "shoe-shine" box. I built one like they have and mounted my lubricator sizer to it. It works fine and I can move it around.
 

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I have loaded 100's of rifle and pistol rounds with a Lee Hand press while sitting at my kitchen table.

I usually prep the cases (deprime & size, prime, bell casemouth) whilie sitting on the couch - I only move to the table when it is time to measure/weigh the powder charges and do the final assembly.

My biggest problem, as noted above is powder storage. I end up buying powder 1 lb at a time and try to use it up quickly.

Note the most cost effective way - but I am sure the Management company would frown on me having a couple of 8 pound cans in my closet.

I am sure they would frown on the 1 pounders if they knew ;)
 

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I took a small 4 drawer toolbox with wheels and screwed a piece of plywood to the top of it and the mounted a lee turret press to the top of it and had a drawer for bullets one for pirmers and another for loading tools and acc. plus dies and used the big bin in the bottom for my powder. Also have a lee hand press and have laoded lots of ammo on it with no problem its just slow if you wantn to crank out a lot of pistol rounds, use mine when im working out of town to size and flare when im in the motel with nothing to do.
 

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Years ago I took a piece of 3/4" plywood 18: x 24" as a floor base, screwed a 2" pipe flage on with 1/4" bolts & washers and made a wooden top out of 2 x 6 about a foot long with a slightly bigger pad of 3/4" plywood firmly attached to another pipe flange - - I then took a 30" length of pipe and screwed into both flanges. I uses what was left of the 2 x 6 as a vertcal stabilizer and nailed thru the wooden top & bottom. I mounted an old Lyman press on one end of the top piece, a bullet sizer on the other end, a powder measure off the side, and a Forster case trimmer in the middle. Always said I'd replace it with a proper bench but its so handy I never have bothered. Now you can buy commercial bases.
 

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When I moved to my new home there was a old 4 draw dresser out front for the garbage pickup, I took it down stairs and rigged up a plywood top and history is made, My reloading setup with draws to use as well, when I set it up I checked the level, it was right on the money;) don't need no big elaborate setup, would be nice to have more room, but I am happy I can reload in peace in my own little space. Aim small hit small. RAMbo.

 

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Bubba1 - I've got the same problem - lack of space! So I use a Craftsmen workmate with a 2x6 board with holes drilled in it to mount the press and other equipment to it after it's clamped into the workmate. Works pretty good although I've got to put one foot on it when I full length resize my .300UM brass! I will be putting together a bench soon from the information I got here from a previous post here of mine. Good luck... CEJ..
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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Ray, looks good. Just need a hammock and a beer fridge....
 
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