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My advice is: don't scrimp on the press. You will mess with lots of other tools and gadgets over the years, but if you get the right press, you never have to change it.
My main press is an RCBS Rock Chucker I got in 1964. Can't tell you how many bazillion rounds it's loaded.
I suppose if I had to replace it, I'd look at a Forster CoAx, but it'd be tough to get me away from a Rockchucker.
I thought the rock chucker came out in 1967. I have a 1968 rock chucker. Can you post pictures of yours. I heard they are quite different. The old ones had a 2 piece mount.
 

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Pull the die bushing out of the a Rock Chucker and the date is stamped underneath. Mine was one of the very first in January of '68. Up until then the only dual leverage press was the RCBS A-2.
 

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Discussion Starter · #403 ·
Dale...I got an email from Brownell's saying they have a number of powders back in stock. I did a little browsing on their site and saw that they had the press you ordered in stock. Did you ever get yours?

Good luck and all the best.
I see a couple powders that are on my list. I'll try to remember to look at my local gun store Friday when I go to town. Maybe they will have some and I can avoid that hazmat fee. I may wait a bit anyway. I have a 223/5.56 die set on back order and the press to but shows later this month, for now. The die set is showing next year now, was saying would ship shortly at one point. It could be that the press will do the same thing. Brownells still shows the press I want as out of stock. Good price tho. If it becomes available for that price, I'd cancel the other one and order it.

At the moment, I've been working on roof repairs. Local Lowes started carrying some new roof repair stuff and so far, I've fixed a few leaks including one that started leaking back in the early 80's. Luckily, it doesn't get the structure itself wet so it doesn't hurt anything, as long as there is a catch bucket under it and it gets emptied regular. Cost me a chunk of change tho. Also, a LOT of sweat. 🥵

Thanks for the heads up tho. (y):)
 

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I'm sorry...I thought you ordered the following press which shows in stock.

 

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Discussion Starter · #406 ·
Well, things have improved. It was claiming it would be November I think. It shipped the other day and came in today. First, it's heavy. I suspect most are since they made with a lot of metal. Second, after unboxing, it's pretty big. Bigger than I thought anyway. I don't have a bench yet so just had to hold it in my hands and work the handle back and forth. Smooooooooooth action for sure. I can't recall who mentioned that thing but thanks for that. I'm looking forward to getting set up and the stuff to reload. Got more to get tho.

Oh, also got some more leaks fixed. Yeppie!!
 

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Well, things have improved. It was claiming it would be November I think. It shipped the other day and came in today. First, it's heavy. I suspect most are since they made with a lot of metal. Second, after unboxing, it's pretty big. Bigger than I thought anyway. I don't have a bench yet so just had to hold it in my hands and work the handle back and forth. Smooooooooooth action for sure. I can't recall who mentioned that thing but thanks for that. I'm looking forward to getting set up and the stuff to reload. Got more to get tho.

Oh, also got some more leaks fixed. Yeppie!!
CoAx is great for precision reloading. Been using mine for a long time. If you need help just shout.

I'll be doing some videos for Forster in the near future.
 

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Discussion Starter · #409 ·
I had some good luck today. I went to get my weekly shots plus a regular Doctors appointment and remembered to go by the local gun store. No primers but they did have quite a bit of powders. I had a list in my phone and I got the following, each a 1 lb bottle/jug/whatever.

Accurate 2520
Winchester 231
Hodgdon H380
Hodgdon Titegroup

A couple of those were on my pistol list but I think one or two can be used for rifle ammo as well. I'll have to check the books to be sure.

So, I got the press, my 5.56MM die set came in and now I have some powders. I need primers and to build my bench now. Oh, I need actual bullets too. After that, I can start having some fun. ROFL
 

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Discussion Starter · #411 ·
I think they will get primers in soon. With all the shipping restrictions, well, it may be best to just wait. I may order some online but if I do, I'll order a LOT of them to make that hazmat fee look small. Honestly tho, I'd rather spend the hazmat fee on actual powder and such. The local gun store has some pretty good prices considering. Each bottle/jug I bought was about $40.00. They are cheaper online but my plan is, try small bottles to see what works good then go online and buy a large jug. Given the expense, the hazmat fee will be small by comparison and I may only do this once in a blue moon. I'd think even one 8 lb jug would last a while but I may even order two at a time.

At the moment tho, I'm in no big hurry. I need to make my workbench, lumber prices are dropping so that helps, plus get the room set up for reloading. I'm making progress tho. My credit card is crying like a baby right now tho. :cry:
 

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Discussion Starter · #412 ·
Another update. My order for the Hornady reloading book was canceled. I ordered the 10th edition and they came out with the 11th so I guess that is why it was canceled. I do find it odd that they didn't bother to email me that it was canceled tho. After all, I would have ordered the 11th at that point or let them switch it out. Anyway, book should be here early next week.

I had a bottle of powder that I could not find what caliber it was supposed to go with. I looked in my books, online and checked my little list. I didn't write on my list what caliber I was planning to use it for tho but it was in the rifle section. Anyway, after not being able to find anything, I went to the local gun store and they let me swap it out for a different powder. While there, of course I found another bottle of powder I wanted. So, I swapped one and bought one. No primers that day tho. When I was in town the other day, they were not open yet. I was to early. So far, no primers but he thinks they will be getting some soon. He's heard they are shipping them.

I found out powder bottles don't fit to well in 50 cal ammo cans. I can get three in there but the shape of the bottle makes things not fit well and end up with wasted space. Since I like keeping my powder dry, really dry, I went to a nearby town and bought two 30MM ammo cans and a 20MM ammo can at a Army surplus store. That 30MM can is large. The 20MM isn't real small either. Anyway, powder in 20MM can now along with silica packs.

I also remembered something I had forgot to buy. Chronograph. I'll add that to my buy list. I think that is the last thing except for primers. Well, still got to clean out spare room and build a work bench. Dang, I need to win the lottery here. :rolleyes::oops:
 

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Dalek2.0 said:
Since I like keeping my powder dry, really dry, I went to a nearby town and bought two 30MM ammo cans and a 20MM ammo can at a Army surplus store. That 30MM can is large. The 20MM isn't real small either. Anyway, powder in 20MM can now along with silica packs.
This is actually a mistake. The powder companies store powder at 50-70% RH, and their load data is developed with powder stored that way, so it has around 1% moisture content. The 2013 Norma manual points out that going from powder stored in high humidity to powder stored bone dry raises the burn rate by about 12%. So you can invalidate your load data by getting it too dry.

A second point in that Norma manual is that unless you apply military sealants, powder in a cartridge case will equalize with the outside humidity over a period of months to a year. You wouldn't think it, looking at how tightly a bullet fits a case neck, but water vapor molecules can still find their way in or out via sub-microscopic surface scratches, so if you assemble a cartridge with totally dry powder and then let it sit in normal humidity for a time, its performance will slow. But more importantly, the reverse is true. If you buy some cartridges and stick them in a desiccated environment, their pressure will increase.
 
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"Keep your powder dry" applied to black powder and still a good idea. I keep mine in ammo cans, but smokeless is on shelves and storage spaces.
 

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Another update. My order for the Hornady reloading book was canceled. I ordered the 10th edition and they came out with the 11th so I guess that is why it was canceled. I do find it odd that they didn't bother to email me that it was canceled tho. After all, I would have ordered the 11th at that point or let them switch it out. Anyway, book should be here early next week.

I had a bottle of powder that I could not find what caliber it was supposed to go with. I looked in my books, online and checked my little list. I didn't write on my list what caliber I was planning to use it for tho but it was in the rifle section. Anyway, after not being able to find anything, I went to the local gun store and they let me swap it out for a different powder. While there, of course I found another bottle of powder I wanted. So, I swapped one and bought one. No primers that day tho. When I was in town the other day, they were not open yet. I was to early. So far, no primers but he thinks they will be getting some soon. He's heard they are shipping them.

I found out powder bottles don't fit to well in 50 cal ammo cans. I can get three in there but the shape of the bottle makes things not fit well and end up with wasted space. Since I like keeping my powder dry, really dry, I went to a nearby town and bought two 30MM ammo cans and a 20MM ammo can at a Army surplus store. That 30MM can is large. The 20MM isn't real small either. Anyway, powder in 20MM can now along with silica packs.

I also remembered something I had forgot to buy. Chronograph. I'll add that to my buy list. I think that is the last thing except for primers. Well, still got to clean out spare room and build a work bench. Dang, I need to win the lottery here. :rolleyes::oops:
Buy more than one reloading manual, I have several including old ones with notes inside.
 

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Discussion Starter · #416 ·
The powder in the ammo can is a temporary thing. I plan to build some sort of wood box for it. I need to research what is the best wood and even try to find out some building methods as well. I wish I had one to go by but I don't think I've even seen a genuine powder storage box or even something suitable. I've read that the military used to have those sorts of things but that was history from ages ago. Sort of reminds me of John Wayne movies and nitro. o_O

I might add, I'm aware of the explosion risk. Thing is, I live in the sticks. I'm a good ways off time wise from the local fire department. By the time they get here, whatever is going to happen already will have. Plus, they know I have chemicals, ammo and fuel stored here. Powder is the least of their worries even if it is in a ammo can. My advice to them was, park in the road and fight the fire the best you can from the edge of the road. Even two story homes around here are a total loss by the time they get there, get their hoses out etc etc and start fighting a fire. I also live plenty far enough from neighbors as well. May break a window, maybe. Even that is doubtful.

Buy more than one reloading manual, I have several including old ones with notes inside.
This is a long thread but I actually bought three. I have a Lee, Lyman and now the Hornady. I've thumbed through the Hornady a bit. I like it a lot. The Lee was good too. They all pretty good. I may try to find some used ones at some point. Maybe I'll find one that has some writings from a real pro reloader in it. What I like most about the Hornady, I plan to use a lot of Hornady bullets. I like their XTP rounds.
 

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The powder in the ammo can is a temporary thing. I plan to build some sort of wood box for it. I need to research what is the best wood and even try to find out some building methods as well.
:unsure:
Are you thinking that wood is somehow going to seal the powder off from the outside world? That certainly isn't the case, if so.
 

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Discussion Starter · #418 ·
:unsure:
Are you thinking that wood is somehow going to seal the powder off from the outside world? That certainly isn't the case, if so.
It's more about organization than anything. I'm hoping I can somehow stabilize the temps and really hope to control the humidity as much as possible. If it wasn't for the explosion risk, a ammo can would be ideal. I can put the powder containers, small or large, in the ammo can, throw in a couple silica packs and they would be dry and it would stabilize the temps a little at least. Long term tho, risk of explosion makes that a bad solution. One has to understand, I have other things that go bad due to the high humidity here. This place is old and air tight is not even a concept it has knowledge of. It's one reason I wish I had a small building just for this. Even a 8' square building would be plenty. Stick in a small A/C to keep things cool and control humidity and some sort of low temp heater that wouldn't be a risk on the powder for heating. Between those two, should be able to control the environment pretty well.

Right now, I'm wanting to figure out what powders I'll be using long term. Even the 1 lb bottles I have now are temporary. I hope to eventually get 8 lb jugs or if it is one I use a lot, even something larger. I'm not sure what all sizes powders come in but I've seen 8 lb jugs online, not in local gun store tho. 8 lbs is quite a lot of bullets. Eventually, I'll get things stored in a safe way. I just need to know what I'll be storing first.

BTW, I bought some food items, pasta, rice, spices etc the other day and today. Those are in ammo cans already with silica packs. Even pasta noodles go bad before to long here, especially in the summer. I've had some get squishy before. It just sucks the moisture out of the air and ruins them. Putting things that need to be dry in ammo cans prolongs their useful life by a large margin. It's just something I have to deal with. I wish things were better but this is reality.
 

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Discussion Starter · #419 ·
I'm digging around for a chronograph. Does anyone have any good or bad info about the Caldwell Ballistic Precision Chronograph 720001? I'm not looking for fancy since I will likely have someone writing down info as the shot is fired. That said, this one does have memory and such and the price isn't bad either. I did skip over the ones from China, even tho most likely come from there anyway. ;-) At least this one doesn't seem to be a Chinese brand.
 

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If you want an optical chronograph, the CED M2 has been tested against the Oehler 35P by Bryan Litz who said they match really well. Shootingsoftware.com reported that its predecessor, the CED Millenium, matched German military Doppler radar tests better than any other optical chronograph when readings were taken on the same bullets in flight. This was done when the German military was looking for a portable chronograph for its armorers. To get any more resolution or precision requires a fairly substantial monetary jump.
 
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