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Ok. I got the dillon square deal b in. It sustanded some damage during shipping (possibly before shipping) anyway...dillons warranty has kicked in an replacement parts are on the way. But while I'm waiting, the question is...what else do I need?

I know I need Calipers - any brand or does it matter?

I know I need scales - suggestions?

Do i need a tumbler?

What reloading book do I need to get?
 

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KNOWLEDGE!!! :lol3:

I bought the RCBS Chargemaster(?) 750. It is the scale only. I assume the Square Deal includes a powder thrower. Tumbler is good if you want clean brass. You could spend a bunch of money before you even get started! Is there anyone near you that you could work with before you get started? It would help to try some stuff out before you buy!
 

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Get a Lyman Reloading manual...and read it...several times....Then go guy another book...maybe the Lee and read it...several times

You'll need a vibratory tumbler and some walnut media.

A el cheapo hand primer sure is handy

some cartridge gages for your caliber is very nice

an RCBS or Lyman powder scale

digital calipers Frankford Arsenal el cheapos are fine for now

start seprating your brass in various calibers

start saving plastic coffee cans

Get that reloading bench built....

what you'll need most of is PATIENCE...too many folks want it all NOW.....

speed kills..which is why I usually don't recommend a newbie start with a more complicated Dillon progressive...I believe in learning to reload on a single stage till you get familiar with the process....but what you have is fine.

Find you someone up there that can help you....a mentor

Go slow...be carefull and have fun
 

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Definitely dial or digital calipers - I was given a set of Harbor Freight Digitals and they have held up for 5 or 6 years now or more. There are definitely nicer ones out there, but these things cost less than most dials ($10 on sale right now) and are definitely good enough. I have both dial and digital and pick up the digitals every time: http://www.harborfreight.com/6-inch-digital-caliper-47257.html

Scale - RCBS or Lyman balance beam are fine. Digitals are nice but not any more accurate, just faster. If you are going to mainly load one "recipe" and won't be changing your charge a lot, a digital is definitely not necessary as it won't be used that often. They are nice though for weighing bullets, charges, cases, whatever. I don't know if one digital is better than any others. I found one not made by a reloading company that claims to be more accurate than all of the other ones I have seen for about $70 I think but have no experience with it. I will try to find a link.

Bullet puller - Any will work. You'll need one eventually, but you can just put culled rounds to the side and get one later if you want. I've had a cheapo Frankford Arsenal from Midway for years and it has held up. The "speed collet" Midway sells is a nice option.

Tumbler and media- I think you'll want one. My experience is with a cheapo Frankford Arsenal that I have had since I started reloading and a big daddy Dillon I was fortunate enough to win. Both work fine. The Dillon holds a lot more brass, but is also more likely to have some media shake out if run with the top off. (I know, you aren't supposed to run it with the top off, but I usually remove the top and turn it on for a few seconds to get a look at the brass before removing it).

Case gauges - For each caliber you shoot. I like the L.E. Wilson from Midway (and the form Midway brand). The only downside is they are not stainless and can rust so you have to take care of them. They are tighter than Dillon's gauges and in my experience if a round drops into them, it will go in your barrel unless your chamber is out of spec. Even some cases that fail the gauge will shoot ok. I just put all the failures in a practice pile.

I will disagree with 'Neck and say you don't need a hand primer. The Dillon priming system will take care of you. I've been loading pistol ammo for 10 years and never needed or wanted one.

Primer flip tray - any brand, only costs a couple of bucks. The Midway "Vibra-Prime" works pretty well for speeding things up but definitely not necessary. Depending on how many primer tubes you have, you may want to pick up a couple of extras.

The manuals and a "mentor" are good advice.

Take it slow at first and pay attention to what the press is doing. Being smooth is important, too. You'll be fine starting on a Dillon. It is most important to be careful when you are getting things set up (adjusting OAL, powder charge, crimp, etc.) and if there is a problem during loading (crushed case, run out of components, misfed primer, etc). While loading normally, the press does most of the work and all you have to do is keep watch to make sure it is all going alright. I like to look into every case, and you can do this as you are setting the bullet. This way you can visually check for too much or to little (or no) powder.

Good luck, and let us know if can provide any long distance guidance.
 

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Big Mike, are you located in Oxford? if so when i get home i will check and see i have recently updated some of my reloading manuals and would be happy to let you have some of the ones that i replaced. I think i have hornady, noslar and maybe a barnes manual and probably the book ABC's of reloading. I am located in Marks (45min west of Oxford) but i am in that area pretty reguarly if you want i can drop off the books for you.
 

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Glad to help.

I forgot to mention that as you probably know, you won't need anything to throw powder as the Dillon will do that for you. Also, some people disassemble their gun and use their barrel as the "gauge". This works but is a bit of a pain. The case gauges aren't that expensive and are the "right" way to do it.

This is the scale I mentioned earlier:
http://www.oldwillknottscales.com/jennings-jscale-mack-20.aspx

I have never used one, but it is priced comparable to other reloading electronic scales and it says it has a resolution of .02 grains which is significantly better than most dedicated reloading scales or anything else I have found even close to this price. I'd really like to try one and probably will someday if I don't hear something bad about them before then.

I was referred to Old Will Knott by another shooter and have bought a scale from them, but it was a larger model for weighing guns at the MS Classic. The scale worked nicely and they shipped promptly, etc, so I don't have a problem recommending them. There may be better or cheaper places, but Old Will has many scales that would work for reloading, some of which are much cheaper than the one above. For example:
http://www.oldwillknottscales.com/jennings-jscale-hp50x.aspx
http://www.oldwillknottscales.com/jennings-jscale-js-50x.aspx

Note their resolution is only .1 of a grain. Of course that is all my beat up old Dillon electronic scale does, and it has served me well for 10 years. Here is a link to an old thread about digital scales if you are interested. In it I describe my technique of averaging powder charges to get a little bit better idea of the actual weight thrown: http://www.msgunowners.com/reloading-ammunition-f11/anyone-got-a-digital-powder-scale-they-really-like-and-trust-t4257.htm?highlight=scale
 

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Hammer said:
Book to get: the ABC's of Reloading.
Of all the advice here, I'll second this opinion above all others because the book is rife with pictures. That's not to say the rest of the posts don't offer great advice, but if you're a beginner on your own, you'll find this book an invaluable primer for the novice reloader who doesn't know what they don't know.

For all the accessories mentioned, you could buy used RCBS equipment--EBay is a great source, as are most firearms forum classified sections (if they have an 'accessories' section). RCBS warranties damn near everything for life--they repaired my Pro-Melt lead melting pot 15 years after I bought it, at no charge except my cost for one-way shipping. It required new electronics and a new pot liner--essentially, the only remaining original parts were the frame and casing. I don't think anyone would argue that RCBS's warranty service and guarantee is among the very best in any industry. Dillon's rep is comparable, I just don't follow the Dillon line of products to know if they offer all the accessories you'll need.

Try not to buy 'cheap'--you'll only have to replace cheap accessories with quality later. Borrow first, if you can. "Made in China" should be left there.

I suppose my contribution to the growing list of advice would be to skip the tumbler and media for right now if your finances require cuttin' corners (no insult intended)-- when I first started out, I washed my brass by soaking them for ~ 20 minutes in vinegar, then I rinsed them all with water, drying them in open air for a couple days. They don't shine, but they're definitely clean enough to reload (it's an old cost-cutting trick--and you can use the vinegar over and over again; and vinegar is cheeep). You can save the cost of a tumbler and media for other things and buy them later at your convenience. (Caution: BRASSO is NOT good for cleaning bullet casings.)

I'd skip the hand primer, too, avoiding the expense until later. If your Dillon press can prime cases, I'd use it. I've never had trouble priming on a press with my Dillon, RCBS, or Hornady presses. Hand priming is believed to be critical amongst some benchrest riflers for accuracy, but with some diligence, it's easy to safely prime a case in a press for accuracy. If you do go the hand primer route, the old Lee hand priming tool is a champ.

I'd even skip the bullet puller right now; when I bought mine ~20 years ago, I paid ~$12 for it; it hasn't pulled $12 worth of bullets yet. And their price doesn't ever seem to go up.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
ftsibley said:
Big Mike, are you located in Oxford? if so when i get home i will check and see i have recently updated some of my reloading manuals and would be happy to let you have some of the ones that i replaced. I think i have hornady, noslar and maybe a barnes manual and probably the book ABC's of reloading. I am located in Marks (45min west of Oxford) but i am in that area pretty reguarly if you want i can drop off the books for you.
'

Wish I was bro. I an hour the other side of Oxford from you. thanks though.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Just to let you guys know. I sent dillon an email with a list of the broken parts. This is the email I got in return.


"No charge part(s) on the way!

Thank you,
Dillon Precision Products, Inc."

I dig it.
 
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