Years ago, I decided that, one day, I should start reloading. So I started saving my brass. I decided then that I would start by reloading .38 Special. I was shooting my revolver a lot — a Smith & Wesson 586.
Saving brass was as far as I got for years, but I was faithful about it. It's pretty easy to save your brass with a revolver, of course. I could just dump the empties into a bag as I shot them — no need to even bend over to pick them up off of the ground. So by the time I finally bought a reloading press, I figured I had about a thousand cases saved.
A couple of Christmases ago, I got some gift cards to Academy (that's a sports and outdoor store chain, for those of you sad souls who don't have one in your area). They had a sale going on the RCBS Rock Chucker Supreme, and I took one out the door, brought it home and put it on the bench in my garage.
When I say I put it on the bench, I mean I set it down, still in the box, on top of the bench. And there it sat for almost two years.
I did start doing some research, at least. I knew that there was a lot of equipment out there for reloading, but I wasn't sure exactly what I would need to get started. After visiting some sites online, I decided that the best first step would be an actual book about reloading, so I downloaded one (Kindle version). Upon reading that book, I felt my next best purchase would be a reloading manual, so I got a copy of the Lyman Reloading Handbook.
Then I got a text from a friend whose step-father had passed away a year or two ago. My friend was cleaning out the step-father's garage, and there was some reloading stuff there that I was welcome to if I would come and get it.
There was a Dillon progressive press (rusted tight) with a couple of sets of dies, some .380 bullets, a case trimmer (!), a bunch of primers (!), a powder trickler and scale (!), and some odd-and-end boxes, cases, etc.
I took all of that home. I decided to leave the Dillon for later. I figured it would be better to learn on a single-stage press, and I already had one in good shape. But having the rest of that stuff got me sparked. I picked up a set of RCBS .38 Special dies from Academy, and some Bullseye powder and bullets from the shop at the range I haunt.
The only thing I really needed to get started was a case tumbler. My father-in-law and I were talking about reloading, and when he heard I needed a case tumbler, he said he had one and that I could keep it at my house as long as I would occasionally clean some tool bits for him.
Well, now the only thing I was out of was excuses. So I got to work. More research — YouTube and reading — and I was off. I installed the press on an old desk inside the house, set up the rest of my stuff, and got busy. I took my time and loaded my first 10 rounds as a trial.
|My very first round!|
|And it worked just like it was supposed to!|
Now it's on to 9mm and .45. And getting that Dillon running. Then .380, .223 and .30 Carbine. Better calipers and a better powder measure. And...as I said, it's an abyss.