Bench of Evil

I finally got a place set up for reloading, so I can once again shoot more without going broke.  How else is am I supposed to practice firing from a hip at 600 rounds a minute without going broke?

It’s your basic Lee Anniversary Kit.  I’m not sure about where I had to mount the press, because there’s a bar in the way in the front, and I was worried the lever would tip the table over.

I’ve already ordered the dies and various other things from Ko-Tonics and MidwayUSA.  Hopefully this weekend I’ll make it up to Cabela’s this weekend to get some powder and primers.  I’m anxious to get started.

16 thoughts on “Bench of Evil”

  1. Curse you and your evil temptations of showing just how easy it is to set up a reloading kit. Next thing you know, I will be setting up my own evil armory-fueling Inquisition-esque machines…

  2. Well, you could switch to single-shot firearms, that’d save a bunch of money. Unfortunately, that wouldn’t annoy the Bradyites… unless it was an “Evil .50”.

    Aren’t you worried about getting powder in the carpet?

  3. 6.8 Remington SPC. Eventually .223 Remington. I don’t really shoot much else that isn’t Russian. Russian ammo is still cheap enough (in relative terms) that I don’t feel a need to reload. I might reload 8mm Mauser too, if I decide to shoot more of that.

    9mm would be handy to reload if I didn’t have a Glock. I might get a barrel with a supported chamber, though,. But Glock will invalidate your warranty if you non-factory ammo, and the factory Glock barrel with an unsupported chamber tends to cause case failures.

  4. If you’re going to reload 9mm, you’re going to want to get a progressive press. I think I’d go absolutely nuts loading 9mm on a single stage press… It’d take a heck of a lot of my time just to recoup the cost of the dies. I don’t load for 9mm, (nor do I shoot a lot of it) so I don’t know what the per-round roll-your-own vs. buy costs currently are, but I doubt you’d see a big spread. The 6.8, however… :)

    What are you planning on feeding the 6.8?

  5. This is something as a beginner I need some education on: what’s a progressive press? And why would 9mm drive me nuts on on a single stage press?

    I’m going to try to make the same 6.8 SPC rounds that Silver City does using their spent brass that I brought back from the GBR. 115 grain Sierra OTM bullet. I think H322 powder and CCI bench rest LR primers.

  6. Yours is a single stage press; this is a progressive press. More than one cartridge is “in” the press at a time. On mine (that hornady one in the link), I decap/size in the first stage, seat a primer/charge in the second, seat a cartridge in the third, and crimp in the fourth (there are, of course, other ways to do it) and it auto-advances (aka auto-indexing) with each pull. Once you get a case in each station, you put in an empty case in location one, and a bullet in the case at station three. Pull the lever. One loaded round is now done. Do it again, and you’ve got another one done. Much, much faster.

    If you’re shooting a lot of anything, it’s worth it once you get a chance to save up the money. (Of course, if you buy the hornady one before the end of the year, you get 1000 bullets for free…)

    I’ve got a progressive that I use for my “short-line” .223 ammo (200 and 300 yards, and for reduced course matches) but I load my “long-line” (600 yard) stuff on a single-stage press.

    Welcome to a whole ‘nother level of gun nuttery. :)

    You’re in good shape to start. Probably a lot better shape than the random crap I accumulated to start. One thing that is worth buying when the budget allows is an electronic scale of some sort… makes checking the thrown weights a lot easier. Speaking of which, that el-cheapo Lee powder measure you got works a heck of a lot better for me than the RCBS one I thought I was upgrading to.

    I can’t give you any advice on 6.8SPC reloading, or, for that matter, light bullet loads for .223. But if you get around to loading up some 69gr or heavier .223 loads, there are a few starting points that work well for lots of ARs. (Specifically the “service rifle” class competition guns)

    Oh, as to primers… the general advice is to avoid Win small rifle primers for higher end loads (Though I’ve never had a problem with them in about 6k loads), as they have a reputation with the high power shooters for piercing more easily.


  7. “…already ordered the dies and various other things…” Ah-HA! I KNEW it wasn’t an actual, working loading bench! Where’s the mess?!?

    A progressive, like the Dillon Square Deal B, has all the dies set in a head, and you run the case through each step with each pull of the lever. First station resizes and deprimes, second primes, bells the case mouth and drops powder, third seats bullet, fourth crimps. Once you’re started, you kick out a finished cartridge with each stroke. BIG time saver for cartridges you shoot a lot of.

    One thing to watch for: the SDB uses proprietary dies, whereas their other presses use any standard die, same as the Hornady progressive(for instance). If only loading one or two handgun cartridges, no big deal; if wanting to do rifle or a bunch of different cartridges and already have dies, a press that uses them would be better.

    I lucked onto a SDB a year or so ago used with dies for 9mm and .45acp for a very good price, and the thing is wonderful. Does take some getting used to, but what doesn’t?

  8. This Lee Turret press is what I use and like it a lot. I use the Lee Classic press to do the initial deprime/resize, then use that turret press with 3 hole turret with a powder drop/bullet seater/factory crimp die set. I don’t shoot thousands of rounds a month, but this little setup works for me, and changing out calibers takes seconds.

  9. It’s great! I’m a newbie of six months or so, and there diffinately was some reluctance pulling the tigger on that first round but, after it hit the target and I finished shooting the rest of the test batch, I couldn’t wait to get back to the bench. Kinda like the satisfaction you get from enjoying your own home brew or preparing a gourmet salad from greens & veggies from your own garden. Oh yeh, I’m using the Lee 4-hole turet and it does a pretty good job, I load 45, 38, 9mm & now 40 s&w and I have a separate turet for each set of dies so changing calibers is a breeze. Have fun!

  10. So, progressive presses are like pipelining on a computer…

  11. The good thing about your press, I have heard but have not tried yet, is that you can take it to the field and do your reloading for various loads there. Right off the back of your truck.

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