26 Aug 2010, 10:04am

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Handloading Ammunition: Tips & Techniques

Ammo reloading is a great way for firearm owners to save money on ammunition. Funds saved on ammunition could be funds to obtain additional firearms. Over the past five years ammunition has seen an increase in price exceeding 50 percent. A couple of years ago there was an increase in demand and decreased supplies of factory produced ammo. Whether it is due to specific ammo not being available or perhaps available but at unacceptable rates, many firearm owners have shifted to producing their own ammunition.

The following handloading ammunition tips can help the beginner reloader get off to a successful start.

Equipment

The very best tip when it comes to reloading equipment is to obtain and follow a reliable up to date reloading guide before you commence reloading. There are several manufacturers that offer manuals with their basic starter kits. A basic reloading kit will include reloading press, dies, case trimmer, primer tool, cleaner and manual.

Presses and Dies

Presses and dies should be obtained based upon ammo type to be reloaded. Revolvers, rifles, and pistols will use the same press. Shotguns have a specific type of press. Progressive type presses allow for making more than one round of ammo with the pull of a handle. The progressive type of press allows for making multiple rounds at one time.

Dies are sold by caliber. Rifle, revolver, and pistol dies work in any press as they are universal. Shotguns require equipment designed specifically for shotguns.

Organization

A clean and neat work space and work environment is needed for maximum reloading safety. By organizing your equipment, supplies and work area you will prevent confusion. Selecting a quiet work area will help to avoid distractions. Work should be done at a steady consistent pace without rushing through the process. Taking your time will help prevent mistakes. Reloading requires the highest achievable quality work. To assure quality is maintained all work should be double checked. For safety purposes loaded rounds must always be identified as loaded rounds. Gun powder should be stored in a cool dry environment away from kids. Warnings for maximum load should always be followed. See the advice, input and assistance from others with reloader experience when possible.

Safety Precautions

In addition to the safety items already mentioned there are other types of safety that must be followed. Use of the proper decapping pin is necessary to keep from making too large of a flash hole. Decapping should occur slowly in the press. Use of lubricant during the resizing will prevent scratches on the dies and cases. Pockets should be cleaned and inspected before inserting new primers. A hammer should never be used to prime cases.

Bullets from various manufactures or various calibers should not be used. Powder that gives off fumes or if it is discolored should not be used. Always remember before reloading to clean and dry cartridges.

Bullets and powders which cannot be identified should not be used.

Trouble Shooting

Following good trouble shooting tips and handloading ammunition tips as given above will help you to develop your own reloading procedures.

Powder levels should be visually inspected power to seating bullets. Start with minimum loads working up to the more maximum loads. This increase should occur at a pace of one half grain.

After making the decision that reloading is something you want to do. You can follow the basic steps to ensure a positive reloading experience.

By following the tips from the experts you can reap the benefits of having insurance.

Reloading is a fun opportunity for willing to take the time to master the craft that is with them.

Keep your working area clean, tidy, and neat at all times. This alone can increase your production.

When you have purchased your tools, books, brass, bullets, primers and powder you will be ready to start reloading. Select an appropriate spot somewhere in your home or garage that allows for sufficient space and lighting.

Some suggestions for the location of your work space may be the garage, storage room, basement or unused room in your home. A sturdy bench should be located in the work area.

Some of these tips may seem rather basic but when applied they make substantial amounts of savings.

Reloading is a craft that has been handed down from one generation to the next. There are substantial cost savings to be obtained by reloading your own ammunition. Not only will you save money but you will be able to make adjustments to the loads for each shell.

There are a lot of resources available to assist those who desire to start handloading ammunition.