Is it actually worth it??


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As much as I enjoy the reloading process I beginning to wonder if it's actually worth the hassel. Spend a fortune & a ridiculous amount of time which I'm incredibly short of as it is to make such marginal gains. I don't match shoot. Just have my guns for making things dead. Currently got 90 Norma cases for my 6.5 creedmoor. It's more expensive to buy the cases than the factory rounds. Anyone fancy buying a load of once fired Norma brass? 🤣


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That depends entirely on your circumstances. Try doing without reloading for the more obscure rounds or wildcat cartridges.
Does it save you money, that’s debatable.
From my point of view it gives me a supply of the same ammunition that I can’t guarantee otherwise.


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It's horses for courses. I only do target shooting so reload 38 Special, 303, 7.62 and 44 magnum. I can easily do 50 rounds of 38 in a night and when I shooting gallery rifle I can do 150 rounds in a morning. Because I've made them and they're sitting in the cabinet, I don't really think of the cost when I'm using them.
My rifle ammunition is more accurate and cheaper.
I also view it as another aspect of the sport you can do without going to the range.
It also makes me laugh that I'm sitting making ammunition and my neighbours have no idea!!!

brave echo niner

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You will get increased performance out of a rifle, generally in both accuracy and velocity by matching up the correct powder charge, in either case in my book that makes it worth it even if the cost is the same because I am getting a much better final product that I have full confidence in.



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I think I'll keep going for my .223 because I get through a lot of rounds with that. Used a couple of times a week at least. The 6.5 though probably does less than 100 rounds a year. Use more zeroing after traveling somewhere than killing stuff with it

Daddy The Skunk

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When you have the makings ammo is always there, no way can I shoot high volume unless I handload. If I were to only hunt elk, deer, speed goats and you could find ammo on the shelf I would not handload. The learning process is invaluable and what I produce is more accurate than factory, a certain satisfaction from taking game with handloads in a single shot rifle is there too. Tools cost money and with any care last forever with certain exceptions. :tiphat:


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In my mind it has two benefits.

1) I can make ammo more cheaply than buying it. Factory ammo is between £1.50 - £3 a shot for my rifles, but I can reload with normal cup and core ammo for under a quid a shot, and under £2 using premium bullets.
2) I can stick away a stash of components which means if I cant get factory ammo for whatever reason I can at least make my own and I'm set.

I would also say that it gives you the option to tweak your load to your rifle for maximum accuracy, but then I'm not a match shooter and I just try to duplicate the factory stuff so thats not really a factor for me.

I think if you only hunt and dont get through a lot of ammo then #1 probably becomes less of an issue, but if you factor in regular range sessions or a busy hunting/varminting calendar then it starts to make much more of a difference to the wallet.


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I don't think many people reload because its cheaper, I enjoy an evening knocking up 50 rounds with all the little bits of faffing around and concentration this entails, I could easily sell all my reloading gear and spend the money on boxes of ammo which would probably last me a long time, but where's the fun in that?
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I reload because I am too anti-social to join a club that encourages interaction with other people.

It a!so gives the illusion of achievement - activity masquerading as performance, I think the phrase is.

Certainly true with my loads...🤔


My recent attempts with the non-lead have been fun and dare I say productive.


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Costs were never an issue for me. The ammunition is the least expensive part of either a stalk or a trip to the range.

I reload because I could rarely find any ammunition in the local RFDs that I wanted to try. I went to the shooting show and could only find one box of 165gr SSTs.

When I wanted to try lead free ammunition it took over 6 months to find someone with a box of GMX. And this was only 2014.

Started reloading and buying bullets from Reloading Solutions or Wiederladen Alzey in Germany and suddenly everything was available.

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A lot of US shooters thought that, then the ammo shortage came and they couldn't get anything. The world's biggest ammo market is struggling to keep up, its got to hit here sometime sooner or later you will be glad you can knock a few up.

The Singing Stalker

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I don’t reload because I don’t see it as worthwhile, I don’t shoot enough to justify the cost.
I don’t have then time. If I had any less time I wouldn’t be able to go out shooting so the idea of me spending an evening reloading is a definite Nono.
I have a deer in the chiller that needs skinning and butchering, better to spend time on that.
Did I mention I have no free time?


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The one bonus for me is once you have the kit you can reload for anything new without a lot of outlay in most cases normally just a die set.
Also as Stubear and Alantoo say you are in control of your ammo as long as you have components so if the local RFD out of the bullet you rifle likes no issues just nip out and load some in your reloading room.
Finally if you ever fancy a bit of a rarer caliber that not well supported its no issues as bullets can now be posted so even if an RFD in Aberdeen are the only ones that have the bullets you want its on a parcel away unlike factory when you have to drive to get them in person.


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Well then - call me old fashioned but reloading to your specific needs is analogous to tying a good fly to catch a trout/salmon. If you do not get the pleasure of so doing then just buy factory but time aside you will never know what you are missing (see what I did there?). Last week Mrs FB and I had 5 bucks to our homeloaded .222 and 6.6x55 - all dead in their tracks - of course they may well have dropped with factory ammo but they didn’t, each one was with a recipe that I had taken time to perfect for our rifles. All added to the experience and a key element of the pleasure we both get from stalking these glorious creatures.


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As much as I enjoy the reloading process I beginning to wonder if it's actually worth the hassel. Spend a fortune & a ridiculous amount of time which I'm incredibly short of as it is to make such marginal gains.
It depends where your journey set off from. In the 1970s you sometimes had no choice but to reload.

I started reloading in late FAC was granted in June 1976...and at that time I mostly shot pistols. So because of cost reloading made sense. Also as I shot a .303 it also made sense. Other than surplus .303 there was no FMJ factory Mark VII available in the Uk and indeed as Kynoch had closed what sporting .303 was available was Norma.

Also being then a student at Leeds that meant that Pudsey and John Longstaff was but an half an hour drive away!

I also owned a .455 Webley Mark VI and again it was pay through the nose....yes you did...for Kynoch "Made in England from Swedish Components" Boxer primed ammunition and then husband the precious cases. So in that sense the cost of my scales, press and what nots has long paid for itself. My current press is an Australian Simplex Master "O" Frame press that I bought to replace my original new RCBS Rockchucker I bought those forty-five years back.

For obsolete calibres I owned and reloaded variously .455 Webley, .280 Ross, .303 British, 8x60S Mauser and for still current but now obscure calibres 6mm Remington and .280 Remington it makes sense.

If I were starting today when I own but a .270 WCF and a .30/06 then probably it wouldn't make financial sense.


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I figure it all comes down to where your interest lies in terms of deer, deer stalking, firearms, ballistics, and reloading,

Personally I have an obsession with deer, a healthy interest in deer stalking, a little interest in firearms, and no real interest in either ballistics or reloading. The next person who comes along will likely be different.

Don’t get me wrong. I have all the reloading kit in .308 from when I had the Sako 75. I bought it because I struggled to find a factory load that would work consistently well. After trying many configurations and testing of different rounds, I found the ideal load. I then spent many hours in the garage putting rounds together ready for going stalking.

All that kit has now sits redundant, and to be honest I couldn’t be happier.

All I want is to pull a rifle out of the cabinet and go stalking.

I accept that using factory rounds might cost me a little bit more, but it really becomes marginal if you factor in the capital expense and - more importantly - the time spent both loading and load testing. I personally have other things I’d rather do, certainly compared to any marginal gain in accuracy for the purposes of woodland stalking. If I was shooting benchrest, F-class, or taking regular 300m + shots, most likely I’d feel different. But I’m not. I’m shooting muntjac and roe on average at somewhere less than 150m. So reloading really couldn’t offer any compelling benefits.

So now I find that I no longer care if someone calls them bullets or heads, nor do I overly worry about barrel twist rates or ballistic coefficients, and I don’t lose any sleep over the different characteristics of reloading powders and primers.

Others might. And that’s just fine too.

Hunter 6.5

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I don’t reload because I don’t see it as worthwhile, I don’t shoot enough to justify the cost.
I don’t have then time. If I had any less time I wouldn’t be able to go out shooting so the idea of me spending an evening reloading is a definite Nono.
I have a deer in the chiller that needs skinning and butchering, better to spend time on that.
Did I mention I have no free time?
Exactly, I stopped reloading last year. Reloading is OK for people doing high volume of shooting, have all the time and money in the world (don't hurry to react, this is from my point of view and experience) . Years ago my howa 22-250 shoot consistently 1 hole groups with federal premium 55gr ballistic tip,it took me half year and lot of time and money to duplicate this load for only about 70fps more velocity. Then I spend over 2 grands on reloading gear alone plus getting expensive rifles and optics and never get again that results. Now important part I live in Northern Ireland and components here is a pain- get 1000 primers to experiment, then tub or two powder for same reason( bullets are not that critical as you already know what you want to use) different story again if rifle doesn't like them. Till now I don't want to buy in bulk as it's only load developing. Next stage is already found a load that I am happy with and driving 40 miles to gun shop for stocking up components but sadly that powder or primers(less problematic as I already have nearly 1000 from first box) is not available. So start all over again. Next my load testing range is 80 miles one way trip. At the end I've understood that had more time spent on load testing than shooting live query (not that bad as it improves my shooting skills and gives me confidence) but same is achieved shooting 1 box of factory ammo at the range. Finally the funny part ,last year I changed my rifles because off calibres change for better ammo availability
Bergara-b14-ridge 270win- shoot less than .5" with all factory ammunition tested except federal (booth premium and blue box) Remington core lokt and hornady custom make one raged holes,hornady superformans 140sst slightly better

Howa 223rem not much testing but sako 50gr and frontier (£8 per box of 20) .4"
What not to be happy with?


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It's "piece of string" question really. It can be a legit' hobby in its own right, or a time sink. For me, I have young children and consequently I have to spend a lot of time at home just to be at home. Reloading is a way of allowing my hobby to occupy some of the time I cannot spend hunting. Plus it saves money if you want something you cannot buy like 235 grain 375H&H loads or lead free 35 Remington, or spitzer loaded 30/30, or anything you can dream up really!