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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Happy Holidays everybody. I am a new shooter and am shooting approximately 175 rounds a week. In a year, lets guestimate that I am shooting 7000 rounds per year. For the majority of 2006, I will be shooting 12 and 20 ga shots (Trap, Skeet and Sporting Clays). Later 28 ga. But for my analysis, I will conclude that I will be shooting 3500 rounds/year of one ***** with one shot type.

My question is to what point is the return on investment met with reloading?

I guess what I would want to know is the general cost (MSRP) of equipment needed to reload PLUS the materials required (assuming I have a big fat collection of good hulls) for a large amount that would get me through a year (say 3500 shots).

Since I plan on shooting for many years to come, this would be either a good idea to start now, or just continue to shoot factory loads.

Thank you for your help!

Mike
 

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Just shoot factory loads and give me your hulls! I prefer AAs and STSs/Nitro in 12 ga and AAs in the other 3 gauges.

If you are going to be that analytical, it probably won't pay YOU to reload. If you enjoy the process of loading and shooting your own loads, especially if you shoot 28 and .410, then a loader is imparative! I've never done the math, I just have been loading all my ammo, except for rimfire, since Hector was a pup. He's been gone now nigh on to 40 years and he was an old dog then when he died! :wink: At $3.00 to $3.50 a box, nope, it doesn't pay you well for your time. But, My shrink charges $150 and hr. so for ME it's a bargain! It's not about the MONEY to me! I do that crap at work!

BP
 

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Burnt Powder summed it up-ya one of them college types what figures money into all aspects of life :evil: :evil: I load for the pure enjoyment of it.I break a clay with MY load,I shoot a rabbit with MY load.I give a buddy a box of MY shells.There is a high degree of satisfaction in knowing you can not only equal factory loads but exceed them.I have loaded for over 25 years --the least reason of which is to sit by a calculator figuring costs.I load 30,000 plus a year--this gives me room to talk :!: :shock:
 

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As the others have indicated, don't reload to save money. It cost's me about 2.80 to reload a box of 12 gage shells and I can buy factory loads for about 3.15 per box. I get my reload components at 9 percent over dealer cost without paying sales tax. If you can't get a similar deal, it could actually cost you more to reload than just to buy factory.
 

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hoashooter said:
Burnt Powder summed it up-ya one of them college types what figures money into all aspects of life :evil: :evil:
Don't feel bad about asking the question. Saving a little money makes sense, even when you get replies like the one above. I started loading about a year ago, and here is my two cents (and yeah, I watch my $$$ and am college educated and don't feel bad about it hoashooter):

A. For 12 and 20 ga, you might save a few pennies a box if you buy your equipment and supplies in large quantities, but once you factor in your time and labor, you can buy the shells cheaper from a manufacturer.

B. Reloading other guages, like 28 and 410 can actually save you some real money. The cost per shell from the manufacturer is substantially higher than your reloading cost.

C. Like other have said before, the real benefit of reloading is knowing that you made the shells you are shooting, some like the process and find it meditative/calming, and some just like to be part of all aspects of the shooting process. If that fits your personality, look into reloading the 12 and 20 ga. If not, buy manufactured shells and use you time with your wife/family/other hobbies where you get a better retuen on your personal time.

My two cents...

HB
 

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Find all the prices you can get in your local area and then run them thru the reloading calculator at http://10xshooters.com/calculators/Shot ... adingCost/

I do not count my time as I have way more time then money, and if I wasn't reloading I would probably be wasting time watching TV or playing computer games or something.

Most of what I load is hunting loads:
1 1/8 shot, sizes 4, 6, 7.5

I use REX powder, REX3 @ 20 grains gives me around 1150 fps. $19.99 plus tax. per 2.2 pounds (Has since went up to $21.99 plus tax)

Hulls I got for $30.00 for 1,000 I should get 10 reloads each from them. - If you saved up a bunch from shooting your basic cost for hulls will be $0.00.

Wads cost me $6.50 per 500 - I could save more by buying in bulk.

Primers will cost me around 80.00 per 5,000 - I am still working on using up the ones I got on a great deal, $1.00 per 100.

My cost per box of 25 shells at these prices is $2.49, the lowest I can buy them in the stores is $15.50 Plus tax for 100 rounds.
So I am saving $1.70 per box of 25. Or $6.80 savings per 100 rounds.

These prices are for regular lead shot, if I use the Remington #4 copper plated I got on a great deal ($96.14 after S&H for 200 pounds) the prices are even better.
1 1/8 oz $2.20 per 25
1 1/4 oz $2.29 per 25
1 1/2 oz $2.49 per 25 (If I ever get around to getting wads for this size)

When I have to start buying the more expensive powder and primers my cost will go to. (Assuming the prices do not change again before then)
My cost per box of 25 shells at these prices is $2.74, the lowest I can buy them in the stores is $15.50 Plus tax for 100 rounds.
So I am saving $1.45 per box of 25. Or $5.80 savings per 100 rounds.

I am not counting any shipping and handling costs in this as I pick it up locally when I am already in town for something else.

Now if I could afford to buy in bulk and switched to 7/8 or 1 once loads I could save a lot more.
I would buy REX1 and use 16.8 grains for 7/8 oz and 17.6 grains for 1 oz loads.
My costs would end up being:
7/8 oz loads - $1.70 per box of 25
1 oz loads - $1.82 per box of 25

If I do not count the price of hulls at all. (If you saved all your own from shooting and had them ready to go)
My costs would end up being:
7/8 oz loads - $1.63 per box of 25
1 oz loads - $1.75 per box of 25

* I am not listing loads you should use, all data listed is safe in my guns, all data listed came from load books/powder manufacturers websites/other reliable source/s.
You should always check any data posted by anyone on a website against known reliable sources before you use it, there is always a chance of a typo by the poster.


Michael Grace
 

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I agree with the consensus so far, that the savings are at best marginal. The advantage of reloading is, to me, the ability to put together loads that aren't available from the manufacturers. With enough experimentation, I can find a load that gives the best patterns from a particular gun/choke, I can load for less recoil, etc. etc. But if I didn't enjoy the process I sure wouldn't reload to save money. (except, as has been mentioned, in the 28 and .410)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks all, and hey, I really don't mind a little fun cause this ol' college boy would be able to take the abuse on the field, as long as you're ready to get it right back at ya!

I grasp the concept now. A gent that I was shooting with yesterday let me try some of his reloads, and they did have a different feel when shooting. They also seemed to break targets harder? He explained his 1 oz 12ga load to me and why he was using it for cold weather shooting.

I may just try this for fun...but I also wanted to see if there was a major impact it would have on the ammo expense...

So now I will go buy a book and read up on the process, equipment, etc. Then hopefully give it a shot.
 

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I bought a press back in the summer to reload 12 gauge target loads and I refuse to buy factory ammo now. Two reasons:

#1, I do save money. Reloading cuts my ammo costs in half, and my time is worth that (plus I enjoy reloading).

#2, I get exactly the load I want (light and fast). After shooting my reloads, I have no interest in factory 1 1/8oz 2 3/4 or 3 dram loads. I don't need the abuse! :lol:

Michael
 

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mbrody said:
So now I will go buy a book and read up on the process, equipment, etc.
Here's the book you need:

Lyman's Shotshell Reloading Handbook, 4th Edition

And don't let anyone kid you that you won't save money reloading 12 and 20 gauge.

Buying components in bulk at decent prices and using 3/4 oz. of shot for 12 gauge and 11/16 oz. for 20, you can save up to around 75 cents per box of shells over the lowest prices for new promos.

If you're only gonna shoot up to about 200 rounds per week the saving's may not be worth it.

But you'll still save some money -- and you don't have to run to the store for ammo every time you run out.
 

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Most reloading discussions compare the cost of reloads to the price of the cheapest store bought shells. If you are going to use Remington or Winchester components in your reloads to somewhat duplicate factory loads, then the cost comparison to these name brand shells usually results in much greater savings.

I have to agree with many of the previous posts that I don't reload just for the savings. There is satisfaction to be gained in "doing it yourself." I usually reload a box or two of shells each evening after work for relaxation. That method also relieves the drudgery of loading hundreds of shells in one sitting.
 

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reloading will pay off monatary wise, but it depends on which press you get. go out and buy a progressive with auto indexing with all the bells and whistles and it's gonna take a bit longer to get out of the red and back into the black.

but it's a hobby, and hobbies are for entertainment not increasing the bank account. get into it, you won't regret it.
 

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I come down firmly in the camp of McKie, slick13 and ras1500. I reload because I found a combination that patterns better than any factory load in my gun. It doesn't hurt that, being a 7/8 oz load it is also lighter recoiling than almost anything you can buy on a regular basis ... and it's mine.

If I compare it to any of the good factory loads with the same shot charge I figure that I'm saving about 50% mostly because the 7/8 loads all seem to have a premium attached (even the Rio 7/8 load is $5-6 per box).

When you start getting serious, don't overlook the used market for equipment. My first Pacific loader came out of an attic clearance and was free. Not hard for even an old college grad like me to figure the ROI on that.
 
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