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A couple of questions that will point you in the right direction in regards to deciding whether or not to get into reloading are:

1. Do you have the disposable income available to invest in reloading equipment? After all is paid for and brought home, this can be in the $1,000 range. If you settle for a simple and inexpensive (note: didn't say "cheap") reloading press, you may find yourself wishing you got that fancy-shmancy progressive when you had the money. That being said, I still use a simple but reliable RCBS single-stage press that I bought many many years ago...does the job, not as quickly as a progressive, but it does the job.

2. Do you have the time to dedicate to the reloading processes? This involves case preparation (cleaning, polishing, measuring and trimming, etc), as well as actually cranking the ammo out. Several hours each weekend, or a weekend every month or so.

3. Will you be reloading for more than one caliber? Some reloading presses are only good for pistol ammo, so if you end up getting one of these, forget reloading rifle ammo. BUT, as a general rule, if you reload more than one pistol caliber, it becomes worth the investment right away.

4. Do you understand that reloading does not make the ammunition free? It only makes it more affordable since you are not paying yourself for the labor, so you only buy components (example: 1 lb of gunpowder contains 7,000 grains of powder, at 6.0 grains per load, that one pound can load over 1,100 rounds, and costs only about $29; .45 plated RN bullets cost about $37 for a box of 500; a box of primers (Winchester Large Pistol) costs about $40 for 1,000, so not counting cases and labor you are looking at $143 to reload 1,000 bullets).

If the answer to all questions is YES, then you can begin now to convince yourself to get into reloading.

It is a fun hobby to get into as a support hobby to shooting, and nothing will delight you more than having several thousands of rounds put away in your garage when ammo becomes scarce on the shelves at stores, or going shooting with buddies and when they run out of their store-bought ammo you still have thousands of rounds in ammo cans in the back of your truck! Whooo-hoooo! The look of envy is priceless! :D Of course, being a buddy, you'll probably give them a couple hundred rounds each to "tide them over" (and maybe accept their cash donations), and then make everyone pick up brass for you!

You will at first rely on other reloaders' advice, but once you start, you will develop your own flavor of the reloading process. I know the method I use will not work for others, but it is how I choose to do it. So ask all the questions you can think of, and any others along the way, before you spend that first dollar!

Cheers!
 

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I bought a 50ct box of .45ACP for 12.50, Blazer alum cased, I am sure you reload a little cheaper than that but is it worth your time?
Exactly my point.

It is worth it to me, especially for multiple calibers, but it may not be worth it for others.

I have heard of shooters who eventually got disgusted with the cost (like I said, reloading does not make the ammo free) or with all that was involved in reloading, that they got rid of their rigs. Check Craigslist in your area, you may find a lot of people getting rid of reloading gear.
 

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It's kinda like when the wife goes and buys a designer handbag "on sale" at $880, and tells me she saved 20%, so I tell her to show me the money she saved by buying the handbag....she just gives me an evil stare and cooks liver for dinner. :rolleyes:

If it's something you really want (reloading) then the savings in components is there, it ain't much, and it certainly isn't enough to pay yourself minimum wage to do the reloading.

I do it because I don't care about paying myself to do it: the payoff is in the shooting as well as the pride and comfort of knowing I have enough ammo to start a small war if I needed to.

Additionally, with a good chrony (like the RCBS AmmoMaster), I can tweak my loads the way I want for the shooting that I like to fit the gun I want to use. I can load plated flat points to max velocity for steel plate, plated flat point or round nose to medium velocities for paper, or hollow points for max expansion. I can shoot ammo that doesn't care if it is 120*F out there, or below freezing. I can use powder with low flash so I don't get blinded at night. I can shoot powders with low residue so no smoke and reduced gunk to clean outta my gun. Whatever. The ammo then complements the gun that complements my shooting style.

Hope that helps somebody!

Cheers!
 

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And unless you want to spend time with your Dremel opening up the barrel throat get a KKM barrel. Not that the LWD barrel for my G30 isn't good, it's just their barrel throats are way too small. They need to open them up to .452" for about the first .050" after the chamber so you can shoot standard length ammo in em'.;)
Of course I've also read about a lot of folks shooting lead ammo out of their factory Glock barrel without problems, you just need to make sure you clean the heck out of it before you shoot jacket stuff later on. Still, I went with a replacement barrel with regular rifling just to be on the safe side.:)
Amen to that!
 

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Cost not withstanding, what specific setup would (or do) you use? Your dream setup, as it were.
If I were to start over and get a "dream setup", I would get the Hornady Lock-N-Load progressive with the motorized case and bullet feeders and accessory bins, motorized case prep center (Hornady or RCBS), and the stainless steel rod cleaning system for case cleaning.

But that's just me....
 

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If I were to start over and get a "dream setup", I would get the Hornady Lock-N-Load progressive with the motorized case and bullet feeders and accessory bins, motorized case prep center (Hornady or RCBS), and the stainless steel rod cleaning system for case cleaning.

But that's just me....
Oh, and another thing I failed to add....RCBS Tungsten Carbide dies.

Most reloading rigs that I know of can accept the dies from other brands, and I absolutely love the customer support I have gotten from RCBS, even to the point once that they made and sent me a bullet seater insert for 9mm that fit right with the plated RN bullets I had....at no charge.

RCBS is great that way, just let them know (via email from website or contact form from website) if there is a problem and they will make it right for you no questions asked!

Jes thought I'd toss that in as well....
 

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Sounds like progressive is the recommendation of choice among many experienced loaders. Is there a fully automated system out there for private use? No manual anything except maybe loading the components into their respective auto-feed bins. That is, you'd simply "fill up the tanks" and hit the ON button.

Or would that be considered manufacturing?
Check out the pics Vince posted in this thread: http://www.glockforum.com/forum/f12/reloaders-dream-setup-2839/

That's a bulk reloader, cranks out like a thousand per hour, all you need to do is fill the parts hoppers (cases, primers, powder and bullets) and turn it ON....
 

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Question?.... the instantly change dies.... do those cover most calibers?
The Hornady Lock-N-Load uses a die bushing that is basically just a twist-lock onto the die plate. You install the actual dies into the bushings, calibrate them once, and tighten the locking rings.

To change calibers, simply twist-unlock the installed dies, set them into their storage box, get the new caliber dies (which you would have already pre-calibrated), twist-lock into the die plate, replace the shell plate with the one for the appropriate caliber, and off ya go!
 

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The Hornady Lock-N-Load uses a die bushing that is basically just a twist-lock onto the die plate. You install the actual dies into the bushings, calibrate them once, and tighten the locking rings.

To change calibers, simply twist-unlock the installed dies, set them into their storage box, get the new caliber dies (which you would have already pre-calibrated), twist-lock into the die plate, replace the shell plate with the one for the appropriate caliber, and off ya go!
BTW, the bushings are designed to fit the Lock-N-Load system of reloading press, and will accept dies from Hornady, RCBS, Lee, and Dillon (that I know of for sure).
 
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