Going Old School
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Thread: Going Old School

  1. #1
    XCR Guru aziator's Avatar
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    Going Old School

    I have an old Rock Chuck that has been in the family for well over 30 years. When I decided to start reloading a few years back I jumped in head first and bought a Dillon 650 with all the trimmings. It has worked well for me and loads great.

    I decided it was time to start building up a load for my .308 and figured what better way then to use the old RC. I had been using it for 22 rimfire swaging so it was already mounted on my bench. I got out the dies and decided to start slow, 150 rounds. Man, is this some back breaking work. I need to buy a new case trimmer as the old one that I have is missing parts. I normally am not that anal about trimming but I want to get these rounds as accurate as possible. I also need to buy a new powder dispenser as the hopper on my old one broke and no one sells a replacement (though I think I can make the RCBS one work).

    It s nice to get back to loading one step at a time and go over fundamentals but I sure wouldn't want to do this all the time. I can see why people get turned off of reloading.
    Don't confuse enthusiasm for competence

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  2. #2
    Expert jrsweb's Avatar
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    Re: Going Old School

    I think reloading can be one of two things: a complete turnoff or an addiction. It is a lot of work as you said especially if you are really tweaking for the best possible recipe for different components. But the reward can be great. I just sent a photo that I took for a friend at the range today and he found a sweet spot for his Sierra 223 loads today - was putting almost every shot through same hole at 100 yds. He is much more anal about reloading - weighs and separates every bullet, case, etc. But it shows in his results. I mostly reload due to cost savings but have been known to tweak and work on special loads - got a batch of XTP 9mm bullets that I'm itching to start working on.

    I have the Dillon 550 but am finding myself performing a lot of steps for 223 separately so I am looking at also getting a turret press or single press for some of that. So I understand why you are doing what you said. Good luck with your experimenting.... one of the reasons why reloading is fun (for me).
    Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery - Churchill

  3. #3
    DSM
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    Re: Going Old School

    When I want to get crazy with details I bust out the Sinclair Int'l reloading gear. Neck turning, uniformers, reamers, the whole nine yards. Don't do it too often but every now and again is fun to do. I used to do all of my loads single stage (even pistol, wow) and then graduated up to the progressives and more automated processes and such. I love the Dillon 1200 trimmer/FL die set up as I'm quite certain case trimming is the single worst step in the entire reloading process.

    It is a labor of love though. Sometimes I look at my boxes of loads and don't want to shoot them because I spent so much time working on them!
    When have any of our plans ever actually worked? We plan, we get there, all hell breaks loose.

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  5. #4
    XCR Guru gunner69's Avatar
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    Re: Going Old School

    I'm a bit old style too, I use a Lee Trim set up that I have motorized. It has the multi-caliber shell holder so is faster than the old style. I also champer the necks inside and out at the same time. Sorry Chris, I DON'T use my old Herter's single stage press (but still have it for any real heavy work).

    I used to watch T.V. and trim with my trimmer in an electrical drill.......... until the wife noticed the metal shavings. A Drill Sgt. couldn't chew ass any better. > I now have a portable T.V. at my loading bench. ;D When weather is bad I do my reloading. Usually resize one day, trim and do the necks the next nite, do the primers, then weight the powder charges and seat the bullets.
    Fio para bellator - be the Prepared Warrior

  6. #5
    Expert TEXAS SOLFTAIL's Avatar
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    Re: Going Old School

    My RCBS Rock Chucker is 35 years old & I still use it today. Mostly resizing.

  7. #6
    DSM
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    Re: Going Old School

    I've got 500 or so pieces of 7.62 I've been plugging away on. I do it in batches or handfuls at a time. Long gone are the days when I would have a Godfather or Star Wars movie marathon and do it all at once!
    When have any of our plans ever actually worked? We plan, we get there, all hell breaks loose.

  8. #7
    Marksman Camp Cook's Avatar
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    Re: Going Old School

    Quote Originally Posted by TEXAS SOLFTAIL View Post
    My RCBS Rock Chucker is 35 years old & I still use it today. Mostly resizing.
    For over 30 years now a Rock Chucker single stage press is what I have been using for everything I added a piggyback unit for handgun cartridges and going to set it up for 223 right away.

  9. #8
    Expert TEXAS SOLFTAIL's Avatar
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    Re: Going Old School

    Do you like the piggyback Camp Cook?

  10. #9
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    Re: Going Old School

    Due to the unit not having a powder checker you have to be very carefull to use powders that will overflow the case if you screw up and get a double charge...

    Other than that the unit once set up works fairly well and takes your regular dies.

    It is definately not as fast to use as a Dillon 650 but it is far better than going single stage...

  11. #10
    XCR Guru ny32182's Avatar
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    Re: Going Old School

    All my loading gets done with a turret, even for pistol.

    With rifle though, I'm not even sure a progressive would speed me up significantly, considering the brass prep is what takes 80% of the time and isn't done on a progressive. Trimming is definitely the worst. I don't use any power tools and it takes forever. There is a nice power machine you can buy that will trim, chamfer, debur; but it costs about $350 and I'm not loading thousands of rifle rounds at a time.

    But, working in the evenings only, it takes me all week to load 100 rifle rounds if the brass needs trimming, working about one hour per evening:

    -Tumble/lube/size/tumble one night
    -Gage, sort by length, trim the next
    -Chamfer/debur the next
    -Prime, measure out powder, seat bullets the next

    So if I get started on Tuesday, I'm ready to shoot on Saturday.

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