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RELOADING VS. NOT RELOADING

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by Kim Z., Jul 8, 2013.

  1. Kim Z.

    Kim Z. Member

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    I would like your opinions if it makes financial sense to reload 12 ga. shotgun shells. I shoot around 300 shells per month.

    Thanks,

    Kim Z.
     
  2. grntitan

    grntitan Well-Known Member

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    Not for that small amount. You'd have far more invested in equipment and supplies/components than you'd ever save reloading.
     
  3. Leo

    Leo Well-Known Member

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    My 12 gauge press is setting covered up and I have not reloaded very many in the last couple years. After I filled a 30 gallon barrel with hulls, I even quit saving them, I just give them to friends.

    I do load 20 gauge shells, mostly because I cannot easily find them loaded with #9 shot and when I do, they are twice what I want to pay.

    If I get a good deal on shot, I will reload 12 gauge again, I just do not bother when I am only saving less than $1.00 per box.
     
  4. timberfaller

    timberfaller Well-Known Member

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    Still, financial and mentality, a good thing to do.

    Never had to get into the "hoarding" crowds at the stores either.
     
  5. chiefjon

    chiefjon Active Member

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    I don't think reloading is about the money. For me, it is to pick the load I like to shoot and the time spent enjoying the activity. After I found the load I liked, I bought an electric assist for my MEC and my reloads are really nice, so I am happy.

    JON
     
  6. kraiza

    kraiza Active Member

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    At 300 rounds a month it's not worth it.
    I shoot about 2000 a month. I do reload because it lets me have shells on hand all the time. It also lets me have the type of load I like.
    As for saving money it's a little less but that's not why I reload. It's part of shooting and I enjoy it.
     
  7. slayer

    slayer Well-Known Member

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    chief you nailed it for me. They are my loads and are always available. bill
     
  8. School Teacher

    School Teacher Well-Known Member

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    I don't like lower cost shells with steel heads. I buy new premium ammo, save my own hulls and reload them.

    I have always preferred Federal hulls especially the paper hulls. The MEC smoth crimping die does a wonderful job on both paper and plastic hulls.


    300 shells per month would suggest a single stage reloader like a MEC Sizemaster. They resize even the steel hulls well and are very easy to learn to use. I still have my original Sizemaster (1977 model) plus other MEC progressive presses (9000 series).

    Reloading, like trapshooting, is a hobby to me and you do not make money from a hobby,

    If you do get into reloading, I recommend that you select a single hull, Like a STS or Gold Medal Plastic, an easy to find powder like Alliant Red Dot or Green Dot, a single wad column and a single brand of primer. Load up a flat or so of shells and use them. I would stay away from heavy or ultra fast loads. I like to load a 2 3/4 dram 1 1/8 shell.

    Find a load you like and always keep a few flats loaded. In that way, you always have ammo ready to go whenever you want to go to a shoot.

    Looking out in the garage under my reloading bench, I have about 30 - 40 flats of new shells and 10 flats of reloads. I keep over 15,000 primers on hand and several 8 pound kegs of Green Dot and Red Dot.

    Shot is the most expensive item and it is high right now. It will probably come down some day to under $30 per 25 pounds. I bought a lot when it was in the $25 range some years ago and still have 30 - 40 bags.

    If you get into reloading, you always have the shell you want and are not affected by ammo shortages,

    The current ammo shortages will some day end so stock up when they do.

    About 20 years ago, a major sporting goods store in my area was selling Remington UMC .22 LR ammo at $5 per brick. I bought 20 bricks and used them for blasting ammo. I have one brick of this lot left.

    I bought a couple of 5000 round cases of Wolf Match Target ammo about 10 years ago when they were $2 or so per a box of 50. Now they go for over $10 a box.

    Reloading to me is a hobby but it lets me stock up on the ammo I need and take advantage of good buys when they occur.

    Ed Ward
     
  9. 2llc

    2llc Well-Known Member

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    For about 3 months the availability of the factory shells has been almost zero. The local gun club has zero available at this time. The "Mart" stores have had a few from time to time but not enough to rely on for a supply. A 120 mile round trip makes Nitro 27's available for $100 per flat and various others for $86. At this point in time it is a good thing to be able to provide your own loads both from a dollar standpoint and availability......... Larry
     
  10. Zoom.Golly

    Zoom.Golly Well-Known Member

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    I comes down to whether or not you already own you equipment. If not, I wouldn't be making that investment now. If you do own your equipment, then the next issue is the price of local shot, and you have to do the calculations to see what you save.
     
  11. spitter

    spitter Well-Known Member TS Supporters

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    Financial Sense and that recovery point threshold mean something different to each of us... If you'd have brand new start-up capital costs for tool and supplies you can figure the math - if the capital/supply cost is @$500 - @$200/$300 (single stage tool & decent volume of components) and the savings is $2/bx while shooting 12 boxes per month...

    The first year will allow recovery of the basic tool cost assuming you continue to ONLY shoot 12 boxes/month... my experience is that shooters tend to actually shoot more for the same dollars over time and the recovery period is extended or in some instances over an extended period of time as you eventually reach an equilibrium regardless of price/round savings...

    I submit the better question may be the ancillary rewards you may receive from self-loading shotgun shells... reduction in recoil, cathartic stress relief from the reloading activity itself... ask yourself if financial is the only benefit you hope to derive?!

    Respectfully responding,

    Jay
     
  12. perezal

    perezal Member

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    For that much just buy your shells in bulk and save the time it takes to reload.
     
  13. Joe Potosky

    Joe Potosky Well-Known Member

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    I just loaded some 12 gauge hulls using 700x after not reloading for some time.

    Boy, did the pattern nicely, I think better then the cheap shells that I've been shooting.
     
  14. spitter

    spitter Well-Known Member TS Supporters

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    and Joe...

    Not knowing you personally, what about the time you spent self-loading those shells... did you enjoy the activity itself or did you find it a chore? You mentioned having equipment not in use for some time - what was your approx. cost per box, even compared to cheapie shells, but also what are AAs/STS/Federal Gold Medal going for in your neck of the woods?!

    Jay
     
  15. LTB45

    LTB45 Member

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    I reload for my wife and I.
    The satisfaction of making my own shells for less than factory is a great feeling.
    As others have said it is part of the hobby and a part that I enjoy.
    Spending time in my basement, I call it "The Dungeon" reloading and listening to the stereo is relaxing.
    Used MEC reloaders are EVERYWHERE. Save a few bucks and don't buy new.
    I reload 12, 20 and .410 all on used loaders that I bought on the cheap, cleaned them up and they work great.
    I say go for it and enjoy!
     
  16. need to shoot more

    need to shoot more Active Member

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    used reloader $100 $150 powder $80 wads $15 primers $40.00 that should get you started...you already have the emptys. I reload because I rather put out the money every couple of months than weekly or mothly I work two jobs and go to school there is time to reload a little here and a little there.

    Jim
     
  17. Didreckson

    Didreckson Active Member

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    As others have said, I don't think it is primarily a financial consideration. Reloading is a hobby in and of itself, and the fact you save a few bucks is just a side benefit really.

    I love to load what I consider a premium shell just the way I like it. I am still using an old purchase of a pallet of West Coast 8's, but when those go, I will replace it with lead at whatever the market is, buying another pallet.

    A mind is a terrible thing to waste, and I have shot a fair amount of top guns, gun clubs, and other bargain loads. They break targets, but mentally I don't believe them to be equal, so it just does not work for me.
     
  18. 1oldtimer

    1oldtimer TS Member

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    I consider my reloads as premium shells at promotion shell prices. Its been a hobby of mine since 1957. My cost in 57 was $1.00 a box. We only shot a couple boxes on a Sunday in those days. I never would have been able to shoot registered targets had it not been for reloading. Breaking a good score with your reloads gives a great sense of accomplishment. 300 shells per month would not be worth it unless you use a single stage reloader.

    Clyde
     
  19. wolfram

    wolfram Well-Known Member

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    Six months or so ago a person could still get target loads for reasonably sane prices like $55 per flat. It was hard to justify the economics id handloading at that price. Today you are lucky is you can get the same shells for $65 per flat. Reloading components are hard to find and expensive also but I think the margin between reloading and buying factory shells is opening up.

    If you were to get into handloading your shotshells, at least you would have this option for times like now when new shells are impossible to find and expesive when you do.
     
  20. davidjayuden

    davidjayuden Well-Known Member

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    An old guy told me once that when you reload you don't get to shoot cheaper, but you do get to shoot more. Maybe if you do take up the reloading vice you may become more involved in the sport and begin to shoot more.
    Not considering time, equipment costs, etc, I last figured $3.44 per box of 1 oz, using Promo powder and reclaimed shot.
    But at just 300 shots/month, I'm just not sure I'd take the plunge.
    dju