What is a Reloading Press?
This is a machine that has been designed and constructed to reload shell cases. With various types available in the market, all of them do the same thing through a process comprising of shell resizing-“de-priming”-priming-gun powder loading-bullet seating-crimping. The press re-loaders have been designed to use compound leverages in pushing up the die in your die. Although it is true that you will still have to lube and clean the shells before reloading them, the reloading presses make work easier and the process faster. But how do I get to lay my hands on the best reloading press?
Types of Reloading Press
a) The Single Stage Press
Among the presses, this is the cheapest and the most basic. Each reloading stage is separately handled when using this product. It is therefore the best reloading press for beginners to learn the trade. Although it is slow, it is the best when accuracy is needed.
b) The Turrent Press
These are semi-automatic products with the dies being required for different steps. The turrents are rotated in this press type in order for the user to go through the various reloading steps. It is a much faster product, coming with similar learning and accuracy levels as the single stage type. However, the price range of these types is a little bit higher than that of the single stage press.
c) The Progressive Press
As the name suggests, this is a progressive product, coming with automatic functioning where a single pull of the handle results in all the reloading steps being done in a single go. It is the fastest, slightly less accurate, complex and the most expensive type.
Factors to Consider When Shopping
Of course you always have to go for something within your budget. Some of the cheapest reloading presses are found in the single stage category and will go for as less as approximately $100. The expensive, high end products are within the progressive types and will go for up to $400 and beyond. You get what you pay for.
Remember that the reloading process goes through six stages, all of which need some accessories. Compare the price of the product with the accessories included. Some of the best reloading presses come with an array of accessories such as the, Chucker , a hex key set, the uniflow powder measurer, a case loading block, a scale, dies, hand priming tool and a deburring tool. Remember that if you don’t get them in the kit, you will have to buy these accessories any way, maybe a bit more costly.
c) Your Needs
In case you need accuracy, go for the single stage and the turrent press types. On the other hand, in the event that you want to save the most time possible, the best reloading press will be found in the progressive types.
d) Durability, Sturdy and Stability
Ensure that the materials used in construction of the products are durable and sturdy enough for stability. They should also be coated with products known to boost the durability of the reloading presses.
Top 5 Best Reloading Press Reviews
Best Single-Stage Reloading Press
RCBS Rock Chucker Supreme Master Reloading Kit Review
This has for a long time been considered not just the best reloading press within the single stage types but in the entire reloading press family. In the kit is found the RCBS Rock Chucker, the uniflow powder measurer, a scale, a case loading block, hand priming tool, a hex key set and a deburring tool. This product is versatile, easy to use, has outstanding strength and comes with almost anything you need to start reloading.
- A nearly complete reloading kit
- .17 thru .60 caliber chamfer & deburr tool
- Ambidextrous design for comfortable use by the right- or lefties
- Reloading manual, case loading block, uniflow powder measure, hex key set, hand priming tool, powder funnel, the reloading press, case lube kit, deburr tool and a reloading scale
- M500 scale
- Larger window opening for accommodation of longer magnum cartridges
- 30.8 lbs and 17.5”×10.5”×10.4” weight and dimensions respectively
- Excellent quality reloading press built with quality materials hence durable
- Excellent quality kit accessories
- Accompanied with just almost everything needed in reloading hence versatile
- Installation is quick and plenty of guides and help available online
- Benchmark of the single stage reloading presses
- Spent primer trays have been included
- It’s quite expensive
- It isn’t accompanied with mounting hardware
- It could have come with more items such as the mounting bolts & plate and the dies
The product, being just the best single stage reloading press, is considered the benchmark used to measure the quality of other presses of its type. It comes with a strong O shaped frame which is very stable and is a little heavier than most of the other presses hence its great performance, durability and stability.
Lee Precision 50th Anniversary Reloading Kit – The Best Reloading Press for Beginners
This product was developed as a tribute for the 50 years of the reloading history of Lee. At its price and with the quality of press and number of accessories, this single stage reloading press is the best bet for any beginner who isn’t yet sure whether reloading is what they want to do. This is a kit worth buying. You will find excellence performance in it thus making it an outright best reloading press you would recommend to a beginner
- Sturdy O frame
- Kit includes breech lock bushings, calipers. Breech lock challenger press, perfect powder measure, powder funnel, lock stud, Lee safety scale, sizing tube, chamfer tool, small & large safety prime and primer pocket-cleaning tool etc
- 11.2lbs and 14.5”×13.4”×6.5” weight and dimensions respectively
- Accepts the 7/8-inch-14 standard threaded dies
- Set up is like ABC
- All-in-one kit
- Great pricing
- Robust O frame with durability and stability
- Comes with an easy to follow manual
- The press’ frame construction features a large clearance
- Dies haven’t been included
- The scale is too precise
- No priming tool and mounting bolts
With an O shaped frame that makes it easy for one to move around as they work, and the inclusion of decent accessories, the product scores as the best reloading press any beginner should be advised to buy.
Lee Precision Classic Cast Press
This is one of the best reloading presses for your money. Among the most notable feature of this press is the railroad track recycled material that is characterized with all Lee presses. This guarantees its strength and durability. The product allows for ambidextrous performances and has the largest opening, together with the longest stroke in the industry. With its adjustable handle, you can get the least travel of any press. This makes it one of the best reloading presses in the market.
- Rigid cast ion construction with baked powder coating for durability and elegance
- 48-tooth adjustable ratchet handle clamp design for shortening and extension
- Automatic 2 primer arms for small and large primers
- Accepts standard shell holders
- Adjustable start and stop positions
- Works with 1¼-12 dies series
- Includes standard 7/8-14 compatible threaded adapter
- Large 1 1/8 diameter ram completely drilled for easy installation
- Longest stroke and largest opening in the industry
- Generous hand clearance
- Easy setup
- Solid cast iron construction
- Simple but very robust design
- Separate purchase of other accessories
- Specific dies are required for reloading to begin
The product comes with an expanded O frame thus allowing the user a wider range of calibers. In addition to the perfect automatic functioning primer and its other unique features, this is one of the best reloading presses you won’t regret spending your money on.
Best Progressive Reloading Press
Hornady Lock N Load Auto-Progressive Reloading Press Review
This is the best reloading press in the progressive reloading press category. It’s quick changing bushing features makes it possible for a user to quickly change the dies without any fuss and in a single process. It also comes with a universal case retainer spring that works to hold the spent brass in position and is versatile enough to be used with the cases of whichever caliber. What else would you want in your search for the best reloading press?
- Five station bushing system
- Large-capacity hopper
- Universal case retainer spring
- Case Activated Powder Drop
- Automatic indexing
- 30.9 lbs and 6×14.2inches weight and dimensions
- Sturdy and durable construction
- Heavy enough for stability
- Less adjustments needed
- Easy and fast setup
- Fast dies swapping mechanism
- Fully automated progressive reloading press
- Fragile primer slide
- Complex and a bit pricy
- Hard to maintain
This accessory is one of the best bow stabilizers and amongst the most sought after. It has been constructed to suit the enthusiastic bow hunter, coming with a lightweight design and a number of customizable weights that can be used for controlling the balance. The included braided wrist band makes it stylish.
Best Turret Reloading Press
Lyman Reloading Press T-Mag Turret Press Review
One of the best reloading presses by one of the best gun accessory manufacturer, the T-Mag Turrent comes with great performance and durability features, but has one of the most unique manuals ever to be compiled in any industry. The manual is very detailed and easy to follow hence its popularity.
- Iron frame with a finish of hammer tone powder coat
- Detachable Six station turrent head system
- Non rust links and handle
- Flat machined base
- The turrent handle also doubles up as its wrench
- Compatible with standard (7/8″ x 14) size brands.
- 9.8 lbs and 6.2”×9.2”×16.8” weight and dimension specifications
- Stable and robust
- Durable and rust proof
- Versatile handle that can be used as a wrench
- Six turrents implies less hassle and less time of reloading
- Easy use hence the best reloading press for beginners
- Manual priming
- Plastic primer tray
- Comes without any additional accessory hence you have to spend more in buying accessories
With a six station turrent head, you are able to go through the whole process from primer removal to case sealing in one go. And with easy attachment on a wood surface, the product works efficiently and quickly thus making work less stressful for you.
The Best Reloading Manuals
The Lyman 49Th Edition Reloading Handbook
For easy use of reloading presses, a manual is needed. The gold standard in this industry is the Lyman 49Th Edition Reloading Handbook. Reloading is quite complicated and if you are a newbie, it is imperative that you get the best reloading press manual. The Lyman 49th Edition can be bought from Amazon or sourced from libraries. It will even be a great idea for a newbie to source the book before they can even consider buying a reloading press.
The book is the world’s most popular reloading manual, which incorporates data from the major manufacturers and articles written by some of the moist renowned reloading authorities. It also incorporates loading data on any new cartridge in the market, not forgetting powders from Vuori, IMR, Alliant, Hodgon and Vihta among others. Grab your copy today.
Which Press Re-loader Should I Buy?
There is no single answer that should convince you that any of the products above is the best preloading press amongst the five. No! These products are just the best in the market but depending on your needs, one of the above re-loaders may end up being better than the other. If this is your first time to shop for the products and to use them, the single stage products may just be the best bet for you. This will also be the case when accuracy is desired. However, if you are less interested in accuracy, but is in need of a fast, easy to use product, then the Hornady Lock N Load Auto-Progressive Reloading Press carries the day.