Lee (open to others also) reloaders please assist?

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Re: Lee (open to others also) reloaders please assist?

Post by ozidingo » 21 Nov 2018, 7:16 pm

I use Lee stuff & prime on the press without dramas. It takes a while to get the hang of the primer feed, but once you do it works fine. (Classic turret press) IMHO Lee is good gear for the price, but like any hobby you’re always going to upgrade bit by bit. I started with a single stage kit.. I’ve now changed most of it & have a lot of entry level stuff I won’t use again.. (chamfer/deburr tool etc.) I’ll use the single stage for sizing/depriming & then again for case trimming when necessary (way better with a cordless drill than by hand!) You can always spend a fortune for the optimum kit, but mine was relatively cheap and it works for me..
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Re: Lee (open to others also) reloaders please assist?

Post by PoorShot300 » 22 Nov 2018, 3:57 pm

Thanks ozidingo for your perspective, my issue is I have limited room, and as this is a hobby for me, also a limit to my funds for efficiencies sake. It looks like I will go with the hand primer Challenger breech lock kit atm, unless a cheaper used alternative becomes available in the next few weeks...

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Re: Lee (open to others also) reloaders please assist?

Post by Blr243 » 25 Nov 2018, 4:14 pm

I was taught to only use a h and primer and his reasoning was to better feel it happening right rather than the big clunky press action So the hand primer is all I have ever known
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Re: Lee (open to others also) reloaders please assist?

Post by axio » 25 Nov 2018, 6:04 pm

Most of my Lee accessories ended up in the bin. Total cheap garbage

The breach lock press works well but the handle rusted :/ The dies are good however
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Re: Lee (open to others also) reloaders please assist?

Post by PoorShot300 » 25 Nov 2018, 6:13 pm

Thanks Blr243, another vote for hand priming. It's looking more like the way I will begin also as the press prime kit doesn't have the shell holders and replaced them with a reloading manual, which I already have in the Hornady manual (#8) and current online ADI reloaders guide.

On primers, I read much of the CCI #400 for .223, so who can tell me the best place for 'components' like primers, projies, powder and cases, or alternate primers? I'm in Victoria if that helps narrow the field?

I have done a bit of a search, but many places don't list prices or postage costs. Who looks after YOU best? Do they combine purchases & offer postage savings etc?

Looking @ OSA brass, 2206H powder, CCI primers and likely Speer projies (55gn) unless otherwise advised. This will just be barrel burn in & press operation familiarisation ammo to begin with, looking at 500 rnds worth of each.
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Re: Lee (open to others also) reloaders please assist?

Post by Cooper » 25 Nov 2018, 6:54 pm

PoorShot300 wrote:Thanks Blr243, another vote for hand priming. It's looking more like the way I will begin also as the press prime kit doesn't have the shell holders and replaced them with a reloading manual, which I already have in the Hornady manual (#8) and current online ADI reloaders guide.

On primers, I read much of the CCI #400 for .223, so who can tell me the best place for 'components' like primers, projies, powder and cases, or alternate primers? I'm in Victoria if that helps narrow the field?

I have done a bit of a search, but many places don't list prices or postage costs. Who looks after YOU best? Do they combine purchases & offer postage savings etc?

Looking @ OSA brass, 2206H powder, CCI primers and likely Speer projies (55gn) unless otherwise advised. This will just be barrel burn in & press operation familiarisation ammo to begin with, looking at 500 rnds worth of each.



When you say Victoria. I assume you mean Melbourne? powder is pretty much the same everywhere price wise. I run Sellior & Bellot primers. Mainly because I can get them for 5 cents each. But they preform perfectly fine. OSA brass is good. My first choice for projectiles would be Sierra Super Roos then Hornady Z-max. Not that there is another wrong with Speer.
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Re: Lee (open to others also) reloaders please assist?

Post by Rod_outbak » 25 Nov 2018, 6:58 pm

Mate, unless you are able to travel, your Local Gun Shop is going to be your source for powder & primers. Getting anyone to ship powder or primers to you is going to be horrendously expensive, whereas your LGS will already have the freight arrangements in place for dangerous goods.
[Even if you do travel, make sure you understand the law about transporting powder and primers yourself, and what storage you might need to do such.]

The others (brass, projectiles etc) can likely be sourced from whomever is offering a good deal online(Cleaver's are worth looking at for prices on bulk components, but others can do half-decent pricing), or you might find your LGS can do a half-decent price as well.
I buy most of my gear through my LGS (shop local if possible), but some items I source elsewhere if they dont stock it.

I use (mostly) OSA brass, Benchmark 2, and CCI 400 primers, with a 55gn Vmax/Zmax pill. Works a treat for me.

From 2 of my distance-shooting mates:
"In every .223 I have owned I have always had great success with 55 grain Nosler Ballistic Tips over 24.5 grains of Benchmark 2.
Velocity is generally around 3100fps and accuracy sub MOA. Out of a little 18" carbine they still clocked 3000 fps.
I found AR2208 to be a little too slow with 55 grainers and AR2206H is pretty close to AR2208 so it may also be a bit too slow.
The other benefit of BM2 is it meters really well. So well that you can throw it straight out of a powder measure."
And:
"22.5gr AR2219 behind a 55gr Nosler BT has been accurate out of all mine, not sure on velocity, but VERY destructive...AR2219 is in between BM1 & BM2 for burn rate and meters well too."

For our .223 loads here(hunting - no benchrest work), I have stuck with the BM2 load of 24.5, and have never found any need to alter it.

I really like the OSA brass; the 1000 new cases I bought a few years back have proven to be very consistent.
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Re: Lee (open to others also) reloaders please assist?

Post by PoorShot300 » 25 Nov 2018, 8:47 pm

Cooper... nah not Melbourne mate, out bush, local town about 10-13,000 pop., one small LGS who has 'fixed' ideas (he'd be in mid 60's) and inflexible in many ways (see below). Thanks for the projie recommendations, and yeah, they too were on the list.

Confused the Speer purchase on that being what OSA/Aussie Outback rounds are loaded with, which get great reports from a range of rifle makes. I see now on second glance they are Sierra, but no 55gn listing for Sierra on the ADI data sheet. :crazy: (my bad). Will look again at pricing/availability of both once more. :thumbsup:



Rod_outbak...Seems I'm stuck with the LGS for primer/powder combo's then, unless I want a 2hr return trip to a larger centre...
I like to keep it local as much as I can, but my LGS sure makes it difficult when he doesn't want to sell me what I want. Case in point, I am buying a CZ and he keeps pushing the Howa down my throat, likely as he has it on the shelf...and has to order the CZ in.

I have read reports where the BR#4 is also a contender for primers (among benchrest guys) and chose #400 for my list based on popularity, though as stated, my selections are not set in stone.

Reading your mates experiences I was somewhat confused by "..AR2206H is pretty close to AR2208 so it may also be a bit too slow." in comparison to 3000fps when the ADI chart lists 2206H/2208 as being from 1:12 a 24" bbl, mine will be a 1:9 24"....

55 GR. Speer Soft Point, Spitzer, Spire Point AR2206H .224" 2.200" 25.0 grain 3176 fps 39700 cup 26.0 grain 3315 fps 49000 cup

55 GR. Speer Soft Point, Spitzer, Spire Point AR2208 .224" 2.200" 25.5 grain 3174 fps 41300 cup 27.5 grain (C) 3384 fps 49700 cup

but then again, no listing for the Nosler projie & running a lighter load in a shorter bbl of manufacturer unknown...perhaps therein lays the difference? Also, I don't have access to a chrony, so it will just be a matter of which recipe groups best, regardless of speed.

It's a given every rifle will be different in what recipe/components each likes 'best', but due to $$ limitations, I figured i had a reasonable medium all round entry level combo to start out with to start my testing, I stand to be corrected.

Over time as funds allow, I can obviously change things up one at a time to see any variances, beginning with experimenting with the range of projies, then powders as most primers appear to be within set parameters to a degree with the least variety.

Glad to hear I at least got the brass well chosen... :allegedly: :P :lol:

Thanks for the input folks.

Cheers
Last edited by PoorShot300 on 25 Nov 2018, 9:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Lee (open to others also) reloaders please assist?

Post by Rod_outbak » 25 Nov 2018, 9:10 pm

I didnt pay too much attention to what they said about the powders; just went with their recipe for BM2, and tested that in my rifle as a starting load(as it was within .5gns of the starting load anyway).
So far, I havent seen any need to tweak the load.
These 2 shooting mates do a lot of benchrest and distance shooting, as well as a fair amount of hunting when they get the chance.
But that doesnt mean they have it right; you should start with the ADI-reccomended safe starting load, and work up from there.
What works in your rifle will likely vary anyway.
Is your new CZ a 24" or a 22" barrel? Hard to work out from what you've written above. If it's a 22" barrel, the ADI table is based on a 24" barrel, so you'd likely come up ~ 30-40fps below whats listed. But there are other factors that might vary this, so a chrony is about the only way to be certain about muzzle velocity. However, MV isnt really what you need; how well they group is more relevant.

I went with BM2 as my powder for the .223, but I have used AR2206H in .223, but it was a while back, and so I dont recall how well it worked.
I use AR2208 in most of my other rifles (.243, 7mm-08, .308, .30-30, .303Brit).

Yes; I am very lucky to have a great LGS who actually try to meet their customers needs. It makes it easier to shop locally.
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Re: Lee (open to others also) reloaders please assist?

Post by PoorShot300 » 25 Nov 2018, 9:28 pm

Being a virgin reloader, of course my main concern will be safety first, and starting on the lower end of things and work up.

My rifle will be a 24" w/1:9 twist, so may even begin .5-.75gn lower than suggested minimum. Sorry, i did have ADI bbl as 22", but went back and corrected it.

My focus will be on groups as I don't have a chrony anyway, so won't get lost down THAT rabbit hole at least lol.

AR2208 does get quite a lot of mentions also, so I guess it will come down to availability at the LGS, and any price variations at a given point in time. Having read a few threads now on .223 loads, I basically went with the most mentioned (perhaps other than the projies which I confused myself with after much data to & fro) that appears to be regularly available, so all in all, I wasn't too far off the mark in most cases.

Appreciate your input & sharing.

Cheers
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Re: Lee (open to others also) reloaders please assist?

Post by Rod_outbak » 25 Nov 2018, 9:51 pm

So as a VERY rough guide, you should expect fairly close to the same muzzle velocities as printed in the ADI loading manual.

My suggestion would be to begin at the starting load listed by ADI for that projectile.
I wouldnt suggest going below that unless you have rock-solid advice you can trust to the contrary.
Maybe I'm misunderstanding you, but your faster twist barrel isnt likely to reduce your muzzle velocity to an appreciable amount. A shorter barrel will, but a tighter twist doesnt look to make a huge amount of difference (very slight reduction, if anything).

The starting load listed by ADI is usually pretty mild, and if you go too far below it, you might cause additional pressure problems.

Chronographs are nice, but clustering all those little holes in a tiny area is even more exciting...

I've read a lot of places that some rifles dont like a particular powder and/or projectile.
So dont stock up big on a particular powder until you find it's working for your rifle...

Cheers,

Rod.
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Re: Lee (open to others also) reloaders please assist?

Post by PoorShot300 » 25 Nov 2018, 10:05 pm

Thanks for that added info., I wasn't sure about the variance due to twist, but had read threads about it, and that the minimum recommended are 'conservative' in the same breath. Understood about the pressure issues I may induce...

By all accounts the factory ASO/Aussie Outback ammo goes well in the CZ's, so I was just basing as much of my recipe as close to that as a start point, and vary from there.

Rethinking now, I may just get enough for 50-100 rnds for the burn-in and mix it up from there, taking in all supplied info. to date as a guide to 'alternatives' to what I begin with.

I will also cross reference my Hornady guide as well and hope to find some middle ground, as the gun will likely shoot better than me, regardless of the recipe lol.

Most of my shooting will be against myself, and not a trophy, so most game will be safe in the early days at any rate.
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Re: Lee (open to others also) reloaders please assist?

Post by TassieTiger » 26 Nov 2018, 12:57 am

My 223 is a 1:9 and 24 inch varmint barrel and it loves AR2206H. this powder is very versatile and was the first words from my local shop when I mentioned my needs and rifle characteristics.
The 1:9 will stabilise heavier projectiles - mine will stabilise 77gns and probably heavier but I’ve personally not gone heavier..yet . A 1:7 will stabilise 90’s or so I’m told but then the lighter, more common projectiles start to be compromised.
When I do go heavier, I’ll look to a slightly slower powder and might then consider 2208.
Hope this helps.



24gn of this powder pushing 55gn vmax places 5 holes all touching at over 100m...a 13-15mm group.
25gns blew that at inch higher and out to an 26mm group.
26gns replicates that of 24gns but the group was slightly taller again.

But, 26gns works with the 60gn max projectiles like a laser.
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Re: Lee (open to others also) reloaders please assist?

Post by PoorShot300 » 26 Nov 2018, 7:21 am

Thanks Tassie for that input, much the same I'd heard, though my LGS fella tells me the 1:9 is only good up to and including 69gn, but hey, it's physics and each gun is different.

I read of an owner who had 1:9 stamped on his barrel shooting 80gn but when he did a rod measure himself, it came out at 1:8.5.
Nice to hear those groups, and it sounds like you've fine tuned your own recipe now.

I do want to move up in weight eventually to stretch the legs so to speak, but as noted this is just the start point for breaking in the rifle, and my reloading skills. May as well try and keep any fubars on my behalf cost to a minimum eh? I could start projie weight lower as well, but figured around 55gn as the all round median weight for plinking and hunting for this twist.

At some point I will be re-barrelling for a faster rate and focus on the heavies and distance primarily, and when funds allow.

Cheers
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Re: Lee (open to others also) reloaders please assist?

Post by Rod_outbak » 26 Nov 2018, 1:29 pm

Poorshot300,

Unless you've shot the original barrel out, you might find it cheaper to buy a larger-calibre rifle, if you are chasing heavier projectiles than 69gns.

[Some literature suggests you might find you can stablise up to 75gn pills in a 1:9" twist, but it really depends on the projectile composition/length, as well as your particular rifles preferences].

If you do find you want heavier projectiles than 69gns or so, you might get better value to plan for a second rifle in something like 6mm (.243) or 6.5mm, at some point in the future?
6mm with a tighter twist will allow for projectiles from 55gn, up to ~105gn or therabouts.
Lets face it; you can never have too many guns...
Just a thought.
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Re: Lee (open to others also) reloaders please assist?

Post by PoorShot300 » 26 Nov 2018, 2:36 pm

Loved the sales pitch lol, but $$$ & space prohibit how many I can have. With all my combined hobby's I'm runnin outta room here mate. Reality is, I have the small to extreme range covered, but nothing in this calibre range that is affordable, for me, to feed.

rofl.
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Re: Lee (open to others also) reloaders please assist?

Post by bladeracer » 26 Nov 2018, 2:43 pm

PoorShot300 wrote:Thanks Blr243, another vote for hand priming. It's looking more like the way I will begin also as the press prime kit doesn't have the shell holders and replaced them with a reloading manual, which I already have in the Hornady manual (#8) and current online ADI reloaders guide.

On primers, I read much of the CCI #400 for .223, so who can tell me the best place for 'components' like primers, projies, powder and cases, or alternate primers? I'm in Victoria if that helps narrow the field?

I have done a bit of a search, but many places don't list prices or postage costs. Who looks after YOU best? Do they combine purchases & offer postage savings etc?

Looking @ OSA brass, 2206H powder, CCI primers and likely Speer projies (55gn) unless otherwise advised. This will just be barrel burn in & press operation familiarisation ammo to begin with, looking at 500 rnds worth of each.


Poweder you can only buy over the counter so ask your local dealer. Primers and ammo you can buy online, but dangerous goods permits are expensive so it's certainly cheaper to buy over the counter as well, unless you are buying a lot. Rebelgunworks charge $60 for DG which is remarkably cheap - Cleaver want $200+. My dealer closed shop two months ago and I'm hunting for two cases of CCI Std Vel currently as my stock is dwindling rapidly. I've paid $550 for the last three, but it now seems the price is over $600 around here. I may end up ordering two cases from Brisbane for $1110 delivered, instead of having to drive up to Melbourne to get it at a higher price. Adding several thousand primers to the order further negates the shipping fees. But I'll still have to go somewhere to get my powders. I may have to drive a friend's wife up to a specialist in Melbourne as he finds the city a challenge, which is an opportunity to stock up.

Bullets and brass you can order from lots of places. I favour Cleaver, Rebels and Projectile Warehouse myself. Your dealer can order them for you as well, but has to play the distributor's games, meaning you'll likely get them online cheaper and quicker than he can supply them. You can also buy once-fired brass from somewhere like Australian Once-Fired Brass, but I would recommend starting with new brass. Prepping brass from a different firearm is a little more involved than new stuff.
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Re: Lee (open to others also) reloaders please assist?

Post by TassieTiger » 26 Nov 2018, 3:13 pm

PoorShot300 wrote:Loved the sales pitch lol, but $$$ & space prohibit how many I can have. With all my combined hobby's I'm runnin outta room here mate. Reality is, I have the small to extreme range covered, but nothing in this calibre range that is affordable, for me, to feed.

rofl.

Just my opinion obviously.
There is not much in AU that you cannot take with some good 223 loads with good shot placement and given the laser type accuracy from most 223’s out to say 400 - shot placement becomes reliant on confidence. That being said - common sense dictates your not going to try and shoot a larger animal at longer distance - be ethical when hunting.
The other bonus with the 223 is that whilst it’s still definitely a centr fire - it does not scare the crap out of every living organism within 1klm...
I now have 3 centrefire rifles and I’m learning about all of them - but there is so darn much to learn - it’s going to take time. If I had have stuck with the 223 alone for a while at least, I would have perfected various aspects by now and well on my way to a deeper understanding of the Calibre.
If target shooting is your thing, some shooters are really pushing the limits of the 223 and knocking circles over 1000 yards...
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