Reloading for handguns..
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Thread: Reloading for handguns..

  1. #1
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    Reloading for handguns..

    I have, in the past, had years of experience reloading for rifles, .223, 243, .308 etc. But I've never reloaded for pistol calibre ammo. I'm trying to work out if it's worth giving it a go, bearing in mind we are VERY restricted in the amount of ammo we can have. In my case, for 9mm and .357 / .38 I can not exceed 250 rounds of either calibre.

    For a little over $105.00 I can buy 150 rounds of 9mm and 150 rounds of .38 wad cutters, which I feel is a pretty reasonable price for around these parts. But looking at the cost of brass, primers, powder etc., and having to factor in buying dies and all the other bits I don't have for pistol ammo, I'm wondering if it's worth it..??

    We only shoot 25m usually although there are comps for turning targets shot at 10m, 15m, and 25m so it's not like I'd have to tailor ammo like I did for 1000m / 1200m+ rifle comps. Windage is never an issue so, really, that only leaves consistency of actual rounds to consider. And, so far, there doesn't appear to be a lot of difference between makes of ammo. My SR1911 likes the 124g FMJ American Eagle and they are pretty clean too - a bonus. For the 669 I have been shooting 158g .357 Sellier & Bellot and, perhaps surprisingly, Geco 148g .38 spec wad cutters. These I find are an excellent round to shoot and are very tame.

    All in all I'm happy with the factory ammo I'm buying. So I guess I should ask myself the question "Do you want to reload just for something else to do?". Honest answer (so far).. I don't know..!!
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    Who restricted you?

    Sent from my SCH-I435 using Tapatalk

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    Quote Originally Posted by shaner View Post
    Who restricted you?

    Sent from my SCH-I435 using Tapatalk
    The British government.. In Great Britain you cannot just go out and buy all the ammo you'd like, or can afford, to have. Everyone with a Firearms Certificate has two amounts they must consider. First is the maximum amount of ammo you can possess at any one time. Second is the maximum amount of ammo you can purchase at any one time.

    For example: I can possess 1000 .22LR, but I can only buy 900 at a time. Similarly I can possess 250 rounds of 9mm and .357/.38 but I can only buy 200 round of each.

    This rule doesn't apply to shotgun cartridges as I can buy, and store at home, up to 10,000. Go figure..!!
    Happiness is like peeing your pants. Everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth.

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    You can get started for about $100 US, for tools for one cartridge.
    Since you are so restricted in what you can have as loaded ammo, what kind of restrictions do you have for loading components?
    I'm thinking

    https://leeprecision.com/lee-loader-9mm-luger.html
    or
    https://leeprecision.com/lee-loader-357-mag.html
    plus
    https://leeprecision.com/new-auto-prime.html for priming.
    If you like doing one caliber then you can add the other later.
    I am sure you already have a hammer.

    It is what I started out with back in 1969.

    Reloading here in the US costs about half the cost of new.

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    I reload handgun ammo for two reasons:
    1. save money
    2. gives me an excuse to spend a few hours alone most evenings, a good stress reliever.

    So the start up cost will be your issue. AS far as only being able to store 250 rounds at a time, well that gives you an excuse to shoot more, so you can keep reloading. Here in USA, I can get Lee 4 die set for around $50 (my favorite). Lee Turret plate for those dies for around $10. 9mm bullets run from $50 to $100 for a box of 500. I use Titegroup powder, and purchase locally for around $25. Since you already reload rifle ammo, you may have some of the other odds and ends needed. My Lee classic turret press cost about $200, press led light strip about $30. Primers around $50 for 1000.
    BE YOURSELF - EVERYONE ELSE IS TAKEN



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    Cheers Silverstring, Jeeper1, I do have a Lee 4 stage turret press, RCBS Chargemaster, and all the other reloading bits and pieces, just missing dies. I'd probably go with RCBS carbine dies as I have used RCBS dies in the past and found them to be pretty good (I have also used Sinclair and Redding comp dies for my .30.

    Problem here is that whatever I reload counts towards the total amount I can possess..!! I think I have to make the choice: either buy and shoot factory loads exclusively or reload exclusively. Right now I just don't know..!!
    Happiness is like peeing your pants. Everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth.

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    The trick is to calculate the cost of components assembled versus the cost of finished factory rounds. Here in the US, they cost benefit gets pretty skinny on some calibers and shows a great savings on others. 9mm and .223 are currently a slim savings although this was before the current run on ammo. A box of 50 9mm was running between 9.00 and 11.00 USD and .223 rounds were available at .30 / each +/-. The 45 ACP is what got me to begin handloading for the first time when I found that factory FMJ was running 20-22 per box of 50. Into the 44 Magnum it gets even better. .380 Auto (9mm Kurz) used to be pricey, but popularity (again prior to the current crunch) was bringing the cost of target ammo down.

    The many references that I make to the crunch/shortage is another of the main reasons to roll your own. I have thousands of rounds available to me and all I need to do is spend the time to make them. Another reason to do so is to tailor one's product to the gun it's used in, but I rarely get that scientific. If mine cycle and are as accurate as factory I am good to go!

    Here's a tool to plug your costs of acquisition into the matrix to see what your finished round costs.

    https://ultimatereloader.com/tools/r...ts-calculator/
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    Lee dies are about half the price of RCBS or Lyman and have never failed me. Brass is cheap for me as I pick up free brass at the range or buy once fired brass. Bullets are also cheap as I cast my own with free range lead or cheap wheel weights found at tire stores. Powder lasts a long time if you burn faster burning powders such as Bullseye or Unique. The best part is the relaxation of making your own.
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    Quote Originally Posted by rexherring View Post
    Lee dies are about half the price of RCBS or Lyman and have never failed me. Brass is cheap for me as I pick up free brass at the range or buy once fired brass. Bullets are also cheap as I cast my own with free range lead or cheap wheel weights found at tire stores. Powder lasts a long time if you burn faster burning powders such as Bullseye or Unique. The best part is the relaxation of making your own.
    I've always thought that Unique was a great powder to use when you are starting handgun reloading. Unique is very versatile and fills up cases well (so it's harder to double or triple charge).

    I started using Bullseye and developed a healthy paranoia (it's healthy since it keeps me and my guns in one piece) about charge weights since I was using such a small powder charge most of the time.
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    Lee Carbide handgun dies are fine for handgun reloading.
    olfarhors, Czechbikr and jwc007 like this.

 

 
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