Thursday, December 21, 2006

New Press

A reloading press is a lifetime acquisition. Most single-stage reloading presses are over-engineered to the point where they'll never wear out in a lifetime of hobby use. I have a Lee Challenger press that I've been using for the past twenty years and it remains just as serviceable today as it was the day I took it out or the box. I have loaded thousands of rounds of ammunition on it and taught others to reload on it. It works great.

For the past year or so, I've been jonesing for a new press, for no other reason than greed. Having two presses on the bench is a time-saver for more production than the yearly hunting ammo. If I want to load a couple hundred rounds of .30-06, for example, having one press set up for one task and the second press set up for another task makes a lot of sense.

Because the Challenger press is lightweight, made of aluminum, I wanted something with a little more substance.

Last night, Milady presented me with this.



The Lee Classic Cast Press. This thing is cast iron. 1-1/8 inch ram. It's big enough to load .50 BMG if I ever feel the need to do that. I can't find a shipping weight, but it must weigh 15 pounds. This thing is built like a tank, and based on the reviews I've seen, I'll probably never want another single-stage press.

I am a lucky, lucky man.

4 comments:

Nick said...

Happy late birthday, Pawpaw, and Merry Christmas to you and your family.

Conservative Scalawag said...

I would agree that you that for sure. To have a lady that not only tolerates but supports your love of firearms.

Merry Christmas.

Caimlas said...

I've been doing some research across the web, asking questions over on The High Road, and generally spending copious amount of time trying to find out what presents the best bang for the buck for reloading. I've been doing this because I'll be starting up the 'lifestyle' (heh) sometime after the new year myself.

Let me just say that you got a damn good gift. Lee's Classic Cast presses (both the single stage and the turret) not only have the best prices, but they're also the best engineered with more and better improvising (for instance, the primer hole in the ram). The cast turret press is even moreso better designed, what with removeable 'plug in' turrets so you don't have to remove the dies themselves.

Finally, Lee actually makes their equipment in the US still. I heard (granded, it was just hearsay) that the latest RCBS precesses are now being cast in China, of all places.

j said...

I've been jonesing for a Classic Cast press for quite a while. I'd have one now except for the front mounting holes being too close to the edge of my bench. I'd have to drill the 5/8" metal rod brace which runs along the front of my bench.

My ancient RCBS Jr throws dead primers on the floor in spite of the plastic tray which is supposed to catch them.