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366 Hornady / New to reloading / Help

Discussion in 'Uncategorized Threads' started by Sero, Feb 13, 2008.

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  1. Sero

    Sero Member

    Dec 7, 2007
    First off I'd once again like to thank everyone that has helped me with questions since my re-entry to trap shooting after a 40+ year layoff.
    All of my old 101 Dianond Grade questions, my reloader questions, many coaching questions and many others topics have been answered quickly and I thank you.
    As a result I'm running a 95+ average so I guess I can say your coaching has helped because my average is slowly climbing.

    Last week I said I was getting a 366 Hornady relaoder (it's on the way) and now I need some advice on powder, wads, shot, hulls and load recomendations.
    So far I only shoot trap and then from 16 yards & 20 Yards and will soon be trying my luck at doubles.

    I've been shooting 3 Dram promo trap loads (Fed & Win) with 1 1/8 oz. and generally #8 shot. This is because of my relationship with some chain store buyers that helped me procure about 400 boxes of the above shells at $3.45 a box.
    I've already shot up quite a few to the point where I currently have about 3500 hulls since my return just before Christmas.

    Now for the questions:
    1. Will these hulls work for starters?
    2. For what I'm shooting what powder do you suggest I use?
    3. The same for wads and will they work in my current supply of hulls?
    4. I am probably shooting heavier powder loads than needed for what I shoot. What do you guys suggest I choose as a powder load?
    5. Should I stick with #8's or go to 7 1/2's?
    6. What primers do you suggest?
    7. If you think the hulls will work for now, how times can I expect to relaod them?
    I'm sure I forgat something so feel free to make any usefull suggestions.
    Thanks again
    John Seroczynski
    Valparaiso, IN.
  2. JB Logan Co. Ohio

    JB Logan Co. Ohio TS Member

    Jan 29, 1998
    Sero- 1. Yes these hulls will probably work for starters. 2. For powder, wads, primer..go to established, published load data found under powder co.'s websites. 5. 7 1/2's or 8's are personal preference (8's will bust them from way back). 7. reload until they start splitting at mouth or until you see splits down the side then back off a reload or two (average). WEIGH YOUR CHARGES at the beginning and every so often. Don't substitute componets as all your numbers will change. Have fun, good luck.

    JB=Jerry Beach 8503917
  3. snkypete

    snkypete Member

    Jan 29, 1998
    Use a reloading manual and find the pages with the brand of hull you plan to reload. Then look through the various options that are listed for your brand of hulls. Pick one that you think will work for you, something around 1150 fps. Then follow the component list in the manual. Don't substitute components. Get a good powder scale and use it to measure and adjust your bushing selection to match the grains in the manual. Ask some of the shooters in your area what recipes they use and like. I've been using a 366 for longer than I care to admit. With a careful set up and some adjustments as you go along, it will do a great job. Good Luck and good shooting.

    Richard - Snekypete
  4. Piper Mac

    Piper Mac Member

    Jun 25, 2007
    I would suggest getting the spring loaded primer seater that Hornady sells. I have an old Pacific 366 and always had to make adjustments to the primer depth, when going from one hull to another, with this seater, I can switch without any adjustments, works great. Really like the 366, think you will too.
  5. Jeff P

    Jeff P Well-Known Member

    Jan 29, 1998
    I'll echo Piper...the 366 is a great machine with only one real drawback. You'd better own a full set of wrenches, because NO TWO nuts on the dang thing are the same size.

    Find someone who shoots with you who loads on one - see if they'll help you with it initially.

    My only other suggestion: As you learn to use it, before you pull the handle EACH TIME, make SURE the powder and shot on/off is in the position you want it. After a while it will become second nature...but starting out you can spill a lot of components.
  6. omgb

    omgb Well-Known Member

    Jan 29, 1998
    Santa Clarita, CA
    Read the instruction manual and then read it again. If you don't have the spring loaded primer seater, you must sort your hulls and load only one kind with each adjustment.

    Becarefuyl to properly adjust your primer drop as mentioned in the instructions. Even so, keep a few spare primers out separate and watch the drop as you cycle the press. If one gets missed, just drop one in mid cycle.

    I wear my shell holder on my right hip. I keep it filled with wads. To the left of me, I keep a box of hulls, pre-sized and deprimed. The left hand puts a hull in the press, the right hand adds a wad and pulls the handle.

    Medium speed, steady motion. Every 20 hulls I move them to a mec stacker and box them. I then give the primer tray twenty turns and do it all over again.

    I settled on Win AAs, Win AA wads and Clays powder along with Win 209 primers and 11/8 oz of #7.5s. I don't recall the exact bushing number but it drops about 17.6 grains of Clays.

    Finally, keep a can of compressed air handy to clear the deck of shot and powder when you screw up. You will screw up, it is far too easy to forget and dump either shot or powder all of=ver the place. I set my press up on small blocks and on a cookie sheet. That catches the shot and it lifts the presss up a tad so that finished shells drop out and away from the press.
  7. 1atatime

    1atatime TS Member

    Jan 29, 1998
    Lots of good advice above.

    Other Tricks:

    I cut a hole (about 4" square) in my loading bench so the loaded shells can drop off the back ramp and fall into a box below. When I've loaded a bunch, I box 'em all at once.

    Regarding primers: I drilled a small hole in the primer tube about 2 - 3 inches above the point where it fits in the loader. That way, I can see light thru the hole when the primers get low.

    Shot/powder tubes: The shot tubes don't hold a lot of shot. I know someone sells replacement tubes that hold more, but what I did was cut the bottom out of a 2 quart plastic milk bottle (could have used a gallon, I suppose), fastened it to a floor joist above the work bench and rigged it to pour shot into a funnel that fit inside the shot tube. (I cut a bit of the funnel off to make the opening a bit larger.) This more than doubled the shot capacity. This same idea didn't work quite as well with powder due to static. I sort of fixed the problem by wiping the inside of the bottle with a dryer sheet. Ended up using only the factory powder tube.

    A friend modified my idea on his loader by using a short hose from the milk bottle to the shot tube.

    Watch your wad guides. They are plastic, and the fingers wear ou and break off. You should always keep at least a couple of them on hand for replacements.

    My 366 does not have the new style primer seat, so I have to adjust the machine for different types of hulls. This is also true of the crimping stations. Be careful the crimp isn't too deep or the opposite, pointed upward. I've also had a problem when the shell got stuck in the final crimp station or having the shell buckle just above the brass.

    As for what you are loading, I personally load 1 ouncers for both 16 and HCP (generally 22 yards). Use whatever shot size you prefer, but 1 ounce of 8's has about as many bb's as 1 1/8 ounces of 7 1/2. I don't know why, but my average actually improved when I went to the 1 ounce loads. I've used nothing else for about 20 years.

    As for hull type, I prefer Federal papers, Gold Medals and Remington STS in that order for loadability, durability and performance. I've loaded some of these 6+ times.(Papers are good for only 2-3 reloads, but are GREAT shooters.) Actually, Federal Top Guns and Estates are also very reloadable for about 4 reloads. Then the paper base may become compromised. I used to use the old Winchester AA's, and still do, but I don't like the new ones (last 4-5 years). Some of the other inexpensive loads, notably from Winchester,(Xpert?) don't reload worth a crap for me. Hull is extremely flimsy.

    As for powder, I've never used promo, but understand it is equivalent to Red Dot. If so, its tried and true. I've probably loaded at least 150# of Red Dot over the past 25 years, along with Green Dot, Clays, 700x and a few others. I personally use fairly low charge weights of powder ... I don't load to the full 3 dram equivalent. At my age, I don't need the beating. I have found that charges putting out about 1100 FPS are just fine for 16-22 yard shooting. I use the same loads for skeet or sporting clays. Those are the only doubles I shoot.

    Good luck
  8. GordonWood421

    GordonWood421 TS Member

    Jan 29, 1998
    For a cheap increase in shot capacity , take a BIG liquor bottle and wrap the neck with enough duct tape to make a snug fit in the original shot bottle . Cut a hole in the top of the shot bottle to fit a MEC stopper .

    That way , you get to enjoy emptying the bottle as well as in re-filling it .

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