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rbstern
06-25-2006, 08:37 PM
Many of you guys seem to be old hands at reloading, having started with a Lee Loader kit. I had a couple of kits (30-30, 357) sitting on the shelf, and decided to try them out, just to see what it is like to make ammo with them. The 30-30 kit was particulary intriguing because it has a hand priming tool that seems to work pretty well.

Using those kits was fun! Slow, but I was impressed with how uniform the rounds came out, and how well the tool did what it was supposed to do.

Now, to go shoot those rounds. I have a high degree of confidence that they will function well based on the way they went together.

Ranch Dog
06-25-2006, 10:12 PM
I have a kit for every caliber of gun I own. Some took some finding to obtain. Even have one in 450 Marlin! This one would have been custom made right before Lee stopped doing the custom made kits.

You have to have a method of flaring the case mouth to use cast bullets with these kits.

rbstern
06-26-2006, 01:00 AM
You have to have a method of flaring the case mouth to use cast bullets with these kits.

Both my 30/30 and my 357 kit have a flaring tool, and the 30/30 flaring tool has a crimper on the other end. Perhaps because these are older kits?

Dale53
06-26-2006, 11:31 AM
Lee used to make MATCH hand die kits. One feller set a National Bench Rest Record (modern) while using one of these sets.

Many years ago, Richard Lee made me custom sets for my .222 Remington and also my .257 Roberts. The amount charged was absolutely a "Piddling amount". This was probably thirty years ago. I have been a fan of LEE's ever since.

Dale53

Turkeyfeather
06-26-2006, 01:56 PM
I can comment on the use of the early Lee hand tools as well. Some 30 years or so ago I loaded all of my 12 ga trap shells with a hand tool. While it took considerably longer than a regular press, it was just fine and my investment was certainly minimal. As I got older and saved a few dollars I upscaled my press but kept the old Lee as a backup. Even now, I'll load a box or two of duck loads using the old hand press.

Regarding the Lee Precision company, I can't say enough about them. I live in a small town about 17 miles from the Lee plant. I trap shoot in the summer with two of Richard's sons and they are fine people. What I particularly enjoy is they are ordinary people trying to bring cost effective products to the market. They understand they can be charging more for many of their products but they are happy with what they do. I can't say I know Richard personally but the sons have always been good with me.

Their warranty is second to none. I broke the decapping pin on a RCBS die and I had to buy replacement pins. With Lee, it only happened once, and they just sent it out in the mail, no charge. I like to buy Lee whenever I can. I don't get any special factory pricing but typically the going price is less anyways.

Junior1942
06-26-2006, 02:49 PM
I've been a Lee fan since the day 30 or so years ago when I called with a question. The girl who answered the phone said, "Just a minute." Then a fellow said, "This is Dick Lee. How can I help you?"

Bruce Hodgdon did the same thing.

Pystis
06-26-2006, 04:06 PM
Are those older Loaders significantly different when comparing to those recent models?

Ranch Dog
06-26-2006, 05:59 PM
The only real difference in the early kits is the powder dipper. The early kits use a dipper calibrated in cubic inches and the current kits have a dipper calibrated in cubic centimeters.

I wonder how many of those kits they have sold?

drinks
06-27-2006, 09:03 PM
My Lee Engineering, not Lee Precision, 20ga and .30-30 loaders have the original dippers that were just given an arbitrary number, some where I have a Lee dipper set from Lee Engineering, too.
Used the .30-30 on .30-30, .303 Savage, 30-06 and .30-40 until I finally had room for a press.

steveb
06-27-2006, 11:06 PM
Though I use a Lee turrent press I also have Lee loaders for every caliber I reload for(357Mag, 44Mag, 30/30). They are fine tools and are a very economical way to get introduced into reloading your own.

Jetwrench
06-28-2006, 01:39 AM
I have one, for the 38 spcl. Got it after I started reloading. That kit is a fine primer (middle English) in itself, and handy I spend alot of time in motel rooms with work. It keeps me out of trouble. JETWRENCH

trooperdan
06-28-2006, 09:27 AM
Wasn't it the target model hand kit that included a neck reamer? The early target models are much sought after for that feature I've heard. You can load some fine ammo with a Lee hand loader, it certainly is a straight line seater. My first reloading was done for .30 Carbine using a Lee kit.

I also credit Lee with bringing the cost of reloading down, dies in particular. It was interesting how quickly die prices came down once Lee started making them so cheaply.

fireflyfather
11-01-2007, 12:54 AM
Called Lee this afternoon with a question on lubing a (tumble lube design) bullet mold (can't get ahold of Lee...or any other stick lube locally, and don't want to wait until a new order arrives in the mail to use the mold). They picked up on the second ring, and in less than 5 minutes I had an answer to my question. They recommended beeswax or never-seez lubricant until I could get Lee stick-type bullet lube. A lot of places would have just said "buy our lube, and wait till it gets there". These guys are first class, and I will buy from them again.

mike in co
11-01-2007, 01:13 AM
if i counted right i have 23 lee hand loaders,,,,encluding an 8mm and a 30'06 lee target. i also have a 7.62x54 that has an out of spec neck sizing section. 310 bullet or smaller fall in the case, but its excellent for cast ! i like one for each rifle if its a low volume fun gun.

Scrounger
11-01-2007, 09:49 AM
I have .222 Remington and .30-06 loaders looking for a home.

725
11-01-2007, 11:38 AM
Scrounger, Have sent you a PM. 725

Bret4207
11-18-2007, 08:56 AM
I can't even begin to say how many rounds of 32-20 I loaded with a Lee loader. Slower than death, weren't all that pretty and I ruined a lot of cases being young and very impatient. But I have no qualms about using them even today. They work, period. They aren't perfect, but they work.

Ranch Dog
11-18-2007, 02:02 PM
In 1978 I loaded 1000 rounds of ammo for my dad's M94 (30-30 Win). I heard him shooting up on the range while I was working in my reloading room so walked out there and asked him why he was busting caps. He said my mom dropped his rifle as he handed it down from the tower blind when she picked him up the previous night and he wanted to make sure the gun was still on. I asked him how many cartridges he had left and he said "eight". I asked if he wanted me to go ahead and load some more up for him and he said "no", he'd just borrow "that Lee Loader and knock some out".

As I write this I realize how lucky I am to have my dad out on the ranch with me. Think about it, he is 78 years old and my mom is 77. He is out in the back pasture hunting from a "Texas Tower" 15' high! My mom is driving him out there and picking him up in the dark with my PUG (looks like a mule). I couldn't take him out as I was in Victoria but he went anyway!

He has had that Bushnell Banner 4X on his rifle since he bought a new M94 in 1968 (B-Square Side Mount). It's not the first time the scope has taken a lick. We have not changed the zero since the rifle was originally sighted in! In the 38 years he has hunted with the rifle (this is the 39th year) he has taken several hundred big game animals. Whitetails, antelope, feral hogs and javelina.

EMC45
12-03-2007, 04:40 PM
Just got 2 sets of the 20 and 12 ga Lee loaders. Very cool. A guy on another site GAVE them to me! Wow that was really cool. I loaded 14 rds of 1 1/8 oz 12 ga last night with it. Gonna shoot them when I get home from work!

725
12-03-2007, 11:50 PM
Got a question. I've got a couple Lee Loader shotshell jobs and in the instructions it refers to a "crimp starter". I haven't used them yet and was wondering if there was any problems loading without that tool. Back when the set was new, the info sheet refers to a $.95 crimp starter that should be used with the Lee Loader set. An email message to Lee was less than satisfying. Anyway, I was wonder what others do. 725

floodgate
12-04-2007, 12:11 AM
725:

What gauge(s) are you loading; and do the shells have six- or eight-point crimps? One of our friends here recently sent me a double handful of old shotgun tool accessories, including a number of Lee and other crimp starters. One of them was just right to fill the 8-point 20 ga. gap in a Lee Loader I got off eBay that was otherwise totally complete. Lemme know via PM - with an address - what you need, and I'll see if I have it and will send it off. No charge: "What goes around, cones around." And I've had more than my share of good ones.

floodgate

EMC45
12-04-2007, 09:14 AM
I have a 6 and 8 point crimp starter for the 12 and a 6 for the 20. I loaded the 14 12 ga shells without using the starter at all. When you use the die at the second to last stage it starts a reallly nice crimp and then you finish up with the ram to complete the crimp. I only shot one last night and it went bang. Worked like a charm.

TasunkaWitko
12-10-2007, 11:38 PM
another fan of the lee loader here!

i've got one for each chambering (.308, .30/30, .7x57 and .280). wouldn't be caught dead without one and wouldn't have a rifle that doesn't have a corresponding lee loader!

Slowpoke
12-13-2007, 09:43 PM
I bought one in 308 Win when I was twelve years old, killed my first legal Javelina,deer and elk with ammo I loaded with it, I retired it when I was fifteen, I still have it.

I still have my original home made hammer built just for the Lee loader. It was made by a old Hermit I met one day out it the hill's and became good friends with, ED Whetstone was his name I called him Flintstone, he was from Wisconsin had marital problems told the judge and his ex- wife good luck with collecting any alimony from him and disappeared into S. AZ and became a prospector, hard rock miner, and mechanic second to none, he made my hammer out of solid brass both handle and head, knurled the handle and inscribed the head.

A few years later I came real close to killing him one night about two in the morning. He had a Zinc mine on the SW end of the Hauchuca MTNS, he would work there all week then on Friday I would come up and relieve him while he went to town for the weekend, I had a old hound named Dooley he would go with me, so this one Friday I met Flintstone on the road and he said to be careful at night because a bear had been coming around the shack , so on Saturday night about two in the morning old Dooley woke me up and he was baying and growling under the shanty and about that time I heard crunch crunch out side in the leaves, this shanty had four steps up to the front door with a small landing at the top, I kept a old gold pan there to feed Dooley in, the door didn't have a lock so I propped a chair up against it at night, anyway the crunch crunch led right up to and on the step's and then I heard the gold pan go tumbling off the landing well by this time I was out of bed and had the 44 in my hand leveled at the door, hammer back and about that time the door came flying in off the hinges and then a gun went off but it wasn't mine and in the muzzle flash I made out the silhouette of Flintstone, he had kicked the door in and fired a shot from his 45 into the ceiling at the same time, he was drunk had a couple of bar queens in his truck that was stuck down the canyon and had hiked up and decided to scare me in the process. I was sixteen at the time.

MEMORIES

GOOD LUCK

Lucky Joe
12-13-2007, 10:39 PM
I have a number of the old Lee Loaders. I generally use one of the presses, however just to relax I'll dig out a Lee and leap light years back in time. They are worth every penny and so is Lee Precision.

Larry Gibson
12-21-2007, 01:52 PM
I bought a 30-30 Lee Loader at Foster's Sproting Goods in Dallas, Oregon with part of $20 my Grand Mother gave me for my 15th birthday. Learned to reload with it on the tailgait of a PU parked on Main Street in front of the store (Polk County Courthouse is accross the street) with the help of a very fine old gentlemean. He showed me how to flair the case mouth with a tapered punch and gave me a dipper made from a steel 9mm case. The dipper was for Unique powder to load under the 118 gr 32-20 bullets he gave me (a coffee can full!). I was a confirmed reloader then.

I've got several Lee Loaders including a couple Target Loaders (.308 and .223). I actually use them a lot even with the single stage press there along side of two Dillons. They are handy at the range and I've sat in many a camp and reloaded.

Larry Gibson

floodgate
12-21-2007, 04:27 PM
TNsailorman:

Yes, there was a big upheaval at Lee many years ago. They started as Lee Custom Engineering (first ads in the 1962 First Edition of "Handloader's Digest" for the little shotshell loader - of which Herter's also offered a clone); then, around 1980, Lee-like shotshell and metallic loading products began appearing under the MRC ("Mequon Reloading Corp") logo. A few years later, the same "MRC" tools showed up made by Lee Precision Corp., as still used at the present day. I'm sure there is a LOT more to the saga - if anyone has more details, please share them with us.

floodgate

TNsailorman
12-21-2007, 08:26 PM
Thanks for the information floodgate. I knew that something had to be going on in Lee land. I still have quite a bit of the old Lee stuff including a couple of the Target Loaders in 30/06 and 8x57mm. I would not trade them for gold. I also have several of the old regular hand loaders and still use them on occassion. I still like some of their equipment but I do wish they would learn some people skills. You don't attract customers by talking down to them. I'm not the only one who has run into this problem. I frequent several reloading sites and I have heard from more than a few people who ran into the same kind of treatment with Lee's customer representatives. Lets just hope that things change for them as they do offer some fine tools at good prices.

JIMinPHX
01-08-2008, 12:53 AM
The only complaint that I had about the Lee Loader was that every once in a while I’d set off a primer while seating it. It would happen if I was careless & let the punch bounce up between hammer blows. If I hit that punch while it was up off the bottom of the case, then the primer would sometimes goes off. If I kept the punch down against the brass, then this did not happen.

Lee loaders have allowed me to start reloading calibers that I could otherwise not afforded to add to my collection at the time. They were always a welcomed addition to my toolbench. Over the years I have given away all my Lee Loaders to help friends get started in reloading. I do miss them sometimes.

I’ve always had good luck with Lee over the twenty some odd years that I’ve been using their stuff. The last ting that I got from them was a custom size boolit sizing kit. They delivered before the promised date & the price was reasonable. The Tech person that I spoke with on the phone knew what he was talking about, which is a lot more than I can say for the people in India that I get when I call Norton for computer tech support these days.

Lee_Loader_Man
04-11-2008, 12:31 PM
Hello
See some one has a Old 7.62 x 57r for the .311 cast bullet
borrow a Lee loader for the 303 British and try that sizer
should work for .308 Bullets - John

Tracy
04-15-2008, 02:14 AM
I have several Lee Loaders. First one I ever got was .45/70; latest metallic cartridge one I got was a .22 Hornet. But I was recently given one I had been looking for, for awhile: .410 shotshell! Now if I could just find a crimp starter...

725
04-15-2008, 09:20 AM
I've run into the service personnel's attitude a few times, too. When asking about older Lee Products, I've gotten a very dissatisfing and abrupt brush off. I know there may be some legaleaze crap that separates the two entities, but I don't really care. It's the same company. They say they have been in the business for so many years, blah, blah, blah. Seems it suits them to claim a heritage on one hand and deny it when it the rubber meets the road. I love my Lee products and especially the hand loaders. I just hate it when a stearling company lets either pencil pushers or corporate wiz kids take over and make it just another business. Slows down my patronage as I just reel against that kind of attitude.

jonk
04-15-2008, 09:32 AM
I just sold my last 2; they worked well but having not one, not two, not three, not four, not five, but SIX presses (sicko) I really don't need them anymore. ;-)

Old Ironsights
04-15-2008, 11:39 AM
Got a question. I've got a couple Lee Loader shotshell jobs and in the instructions it refers to a "crimp starter". I haven't used them yet and was wondering if there was any problems loading without that tool. Back when the set was new, the info sheet refers to a $.95 crimp starter that should be used with the Lee Loader set. An email message to Lee was less than satisfying. Anyway, I was wonder what others do. 725

No - not if you are using once-fired hulls. You really only need the starter for NIB/unfired hulls.

I have a Lee Loader in every caliber I shoot, and a few I don't. (Still gotta get one for 20ga though)

I reload my .45-70 solely on a lee loader - and I'm very nearly as fast as using a turret press (sans-powder feed).

As for Customer Service: I just emailed them asking for a product they don't stock... a .45-70 Case Mouth Flaring Tool (like the one with the .357 kit).

They are making me one for $12. ($8 + $4 shipping) Tough to beat.


The only complaint that I had about the Lee Loader was that every once in a while I’d set off a primer while seating it.

That's why, for GP, I use a Lee Hand Prime. I don't take it to the field with the kit, but at home I pre-prime all my cases with the hand prime.

KCSO
04-15-2008, 03:29 PM
What is interesting is that the LEE LOADER was nothing new when it came out. Ideal had been selling a hammer in hammer out die set for years and the earliest set i saw was a military kit dating from the 1880's. I had occasion to see and copy a kit somewhat like the Lee Loader that was made for Buffalo Hunters in the 1870's. Lee's improvments included the combination primer seater and bullet seater and his packaging and promotion. Lee took up just about the time that Lyman dropped their hammer in dies and he caught a whole new generation of reloaders. Although I had a Lee loader or two back in the late 60's I actually prefered the 310 tool and used the hammer in Lyman Die for F/L resizing. The Lyman dies were harder to use as they were F/L sizers and Ideal and Later Lyman recommended using a vise to squeeze in the cases if possible.

chris112
04-16-2008, 11:56 PM
Have several Lee Loaders, started with a 7X57. I do wish that Lee would have a place on their site where you could download the charge cards.

The first rifle with scope that I bought while a cousin was helping me sight it in he fired a group that you could cover with a dime; just figured it out, group measured .294" or smaller. Not bad for a regular (not Target) model Lee Loader useing Hornady bullets. One of these days I am going to have to see about getting a Lee Target model in .308 and try to find out what that rifle can really do.

Scrounger
04-17-2008, 12:17 AM
The loads made with Lee Loaders using the plastic dippers were accurate because the load was way under max pressure. Try that on your regular press, just drop the powder about 6 grains under maximum.

Old Ironsights
04-17-2008, 09:24 AM
Have several Lee Loaders, started with a 7X57. I do wish that Lee would have a place on their site where you could download the charge cards. ...
Just call/email them and ask for one. They will probably oblige.

Old Ironsights
05-27-2008, 03:56 PM
I've messed up FAR more cases on a progressive than I EVER have on a Lee Loader.

I use my LL exclusively for .45-70 and can whack out around 100 rounds an hour.

That may not be practical for handgun/autoloader loads but it's far more than sufficient for low to intermediate volume rifle shooting.

AZMark
05-29-2008, 01:52 PM
I have a Lee Loader for .38 special, and I like it fine. I'm going to get a .45 ACP, and wondered how they work for that caliber.

Ranch Dog
05-29-2008, 02:05 PM
I just bought one for my 219 Zipper! That completes one for every rifle caliber I shoot... a bunch of them.

Southern Son
05-30-2008, 09:02 AM
One of the properties I used to hunt on in southern NSW was owned by a drinking buddy of my dad. He would let me go down there whenever I wanted. I would go down there with his son and we would shoot foxes (up to 20 a night after the skins were worth nothing). Cause the skins were worthless, we would use whatever tickled our fancy. He mainly used a 6.5x55 Mauser that had been sporterized. At night we would sit in the shed (there was no house on the property) and he would reload with one of those kits. It always had me stuffed how hitting a bullet with a hammer could make ammo as accurate as what he made. The don't turn up often in Oz, but I have picked up a 12ga and a 45/70. I mainly use the 45/70 to decap my black powder brass on the range before dropping the brass in the water.

7 MM
06-12-2008, 07:07 PM
I started with Lee Loaders in the 60's and still use them today.
If anyone has a 410 lee loader for sale please let me know as it is the only one I am missing.
They came in 3inch and 2 1/2 inch and I will take either or both.
E-mail me at rodmkr@yahoo.com

Lucky Joe
06-12-2008, 09:22 PM
I've been a Lee fan since the day 30 or so years ago when I called with a question. The girl who answered the phone said, "Just a minute." Then a fellow said, "This is Dick Lee. How can I help you?"

Bruce Hodgdon did the same thing.

I called Lee one day and I got the same thing "This is Dick Lee. How can I help you?"
I replied "Mr. Lee the owner" he chuckled and said "yes it is" I asked " how come you are answering the phone" he said "everybody is out to lunch and I'm the only one here". I'll never forget it, and the Lee company and products have always treated me fine.

Glad to hear about the boys being regular guys. I have a variety of dies, only the Lee dies did I pay for the rest were given to me or came in a garage sale box of stuff, etc.
I think Hornady makes pretty good stuff too.

fiberoptik
10-03-2008, 12:29 AM
I've got a 30-30, 30-40, .308, 30-06, 7.5x55 & 7.62x54r. I've got a 30-30 Lee Loader, & the 06 cases are much too big to fit. As I see the case sizes, I'd be able to get the Russkie one to fit all but the Swiss, which is a bit bigger in the case by the shoulder. Now if only I could find one in 7.5x55 size........
Any Ideas??

missionary5155
10-03-2008, 09:18 PM
In 1968 I bought a Marlin 336 in .32 Win. Speacial. A month later I bought a Lee Loader for the same caliber. I still load my 12 gauge Crow loads (Illinois) and al my 12 down here with the Lee Loader. My Loader here has the old adjustable shot dipper.

fiberoptik
10-14-2008, 01:56 AM
Now if only I could find one cheap or donated in 6.5x55, 7x57, 7.62x54R or maybe .303 if it'd fit, .30 Carb. & .38....
I need to sell cars to buy reloading stuff!!:(

mike in co
10-14-2008, 02:04 AM
Now if only I could find one cheap or donated in 6.5x55, 7x57, 7.62x54R or maybe .303 if it'd fit, .30 Carb. & .38....
I need to sell cars to buy reloading stuff!!:(

i believe 38, 303 , 7.62x54r and 6.5x55 are all still production items..available from midway.

7x57 is a different story.

big dale
10-14-2008, 06:00 AM
I have several of them that I have been using since the 1960's. The best example of their accuracy that I have is than I once bought a used Remington 788 in 22-250 that came with a 2 to7 power scope and a Lee Loader with part of a box of bullets. The guy even included part of a can of powder and said it did real good. I took the stuff to the range and loaded five of his cases on the bench at the range, and the first five shots grouped in 3/8 of an inch from the sandbags. That was about 20 years ago and that rifle is still not for sale.

I always prefer to use their hand priming tool as i don't think anyone as clumsy as me should be seating primers with a hammer.

Big Dale

725
10-14-2008, 07:43 AM
AZMark - The .45 work just fine. Hard to get any easier.

bohokii
10-31-2008, 11:22 PM
they really make you feel like you are in the past

i would not reccomend them for autoloaders though i have one in 30 carbine and its measure doesnt give me a load with enough power to cycle the action

357 magnum 44 magnum are perfect 30-30 also great when using them for bolt guns,revolvers,levers its like magic

mikenbarb
11-02-2008, 11:59 AM
I currently own 13 complete Lee Loader sets (And always looking for more) and a few parts kits and I love to break them out once in a while to go back in time a little. I have 4 sets of the Zerro Error(Target model) and 3 sets of the "Improved" that are great because they have a hand priming tool, neck flaring tool, primer pocket cleaner and a nice fine threaded micrometer type seating body plus all the other parts needed to load a cartridge. I think my first experience with one was about 20+ years ago and I have been a fan of them ever since. The great thing about them is that their a easy to use innexpensive reloading tool for the beginner reloader or a fun tool to use once in a while for the seasoned one. I have found that my Zero-Error kits will make as good or better reloads than my press setup if you take the time to use them correctly. There were many manufacturers that have tried to copy the Lee Loader in the past but I found that none are as good as the Lee's. The only disadvantage is that their slowwwww.
Now that im thinking about it, I got a few 30-30's I gotta load up today and im gonna break out the ol' Lee Loader and have some fun. tap,tap,tap,tap.:smile:

mike in co
04-25-2009, 02:02 AM
since my original post i have gone to over 40 rifle plus pistol,shotgun and several target models.


today: i bought 19(yes NINETEEN) MORE...all in one deal....


a 6.5 rem mag, a couple of 222's one 222mag,a22-250, a 41 mag, and a couple of unusual.....a 270 win "unitized", a 300H+H.!!, and a 16 ga in ared/red box.

some duplicates of current collection....so they may show up in the for sale.


so that puts me well over 80 lee loaders......


mike in co

stubshaft
04-25-2009, 04:30 AM
I started handloading in 1964 when I was 9 years old. I had gotten my first 30/30 (a mdl 64 Winchester). It was a foolproof way of learning the basics of reloading and the systematic method of using it kept me out of trouble. I now have 6 presses in various configurations and still periodically pull out the old Lee loader and relax in front of the tube.

TNsailorman
04-25-2009, 11:59 PM
I believe that when you criticise someone about a service problem and get a bad response initially you stop doing business with tht company or make one last attempt to resolve the matter. I wrote of two problems that I had with Lee in the past. One of the problems was resolved by me(I repaired the rod in the collet die) and I decided to make one more attempt to get the second one settled. I packaged up 6 decapping rods that had broken tips on them and returned them to Lee with a simple note explaining that they were broken in use. I had called them before and got a less than friendly reply from the lady on the other end of the conversation. This time in a fairly short time I received replacements for the 6 decapping rods. I was both surprised and happy. Lee is now off my "do not buy from list". They make some useful equipment that is just not available anywhere else. My hat is off to Lee.

bart55
04-26-2009, 01:21 AM
I have had nothing but good dealings with lee .I started with a lee loader in 1962 for a270 winchester that I bought with money i made shoveling snow and selling foxes that we trapped . Pennsylvania had a bounty on them and all we had to do was bring in the dead fox . I still hav e that loader along with many more. and use them at the range to develop loads .

bart55
04-26-2009, 01:42 AM
actually the rifle was bought in 62 but I didnt get the lee till a couple of years later . I was using a lyman tong tool for a 22 hi power I was using for woodchucks . but never got any other dies for that 310 .I bought the lee tool for the 270 then graduated to a bair c press . and eventually a dillon 450 then a 550 then another and a square deal now I seem to collect presses of all types . My wife keeps telling me I am obsessed with loading , but doesn t everyone sleep with a hand tool next to the bed

BCall
04-26-2009, 01:48 AM
My wife keeps telling me I am obsessed with loading , but doesn t everyone sleep with a hand tool next to the bed

Not me, I keep it under my pillow for emergencies.

mike in co
04-26-2009, 09:29 PM
and three more today...22-250, m1 30 carbine, and (another) small 12 ga.

gotta do another inventory at let u guys buy the excess.

mike in co

BCall
04-26-2009, 10:15 PM
I got an improved version the other day in 22 BR. Its actually an MRC, still neat. The priming tool actually does small rifle primers for the BR case though. Kinda neat. Billy

Caliboose
04-27-2009, 01:51 AM
725: I would love to get a photocopy of those instructions.

Caliboose

UnderDawgAl
04-27-2009, 09:35 PM
mike in co:

Where are you getting all those? I'm interested in the following, if you're willing to part with them.

(1) small 12 gauge (2 3/4")
(2) .32 ACP
(3) 9mm
(4) 30-30
(5) 257 Roberts

UnderDawgAl

725
04-27-2009, 11:29 PM
Caliboose:
PM me with any requests. If I can help, I certainly will. Your post leaves me a little short - I don't know what you want copies of. Send me your name, address, zip etc and I'll do whatever I can.
725

mike in co
04-28-2009, 12:25 AM
mike in co:

Where are you getting all those? I'm interested in the following, if you're willing to part with them.

(1) small 12 gauge (2 3/4")
(2) .32 ACP
(3) 9mm
(4) 30-30
(5) 257 Roberts

UnderDawgAl

i work gun shows for my brass company. when i have time i look. there were 3 or 4 people with them. one guy mouthed off about how much they were worth on fleabay....i started to give him 2 cents worth, but just passed.
when i get some time i'll post what i have in spares.

mike in co

Beekeeper
04-28-2009, 12:27 PM
Mike,
Did you ever find any more 410 shotgun lee loaders?
I'm still looking for one if you have one.
PM me if you have one you will part with.


beekeeper

mike in co
04-28-2009, 02:27 PM
Mike,
Did you ever find any more 410 shotgun lee loaders?
I'm still looking for one if you have one.
PM me if you have one you will part with.


beekeeper

still just one

UnderDawgAl
04-28-2009, 10:19 PM
I just came across two of them at a small gunshop, where I bought each for $10. One is .357 Mag and the other is .44 Special. Both are MRC-branded (what Lee Custom Engineering changed its name to after Richard Lee was forced out).

They are both "Improved Loaders," meaning that they have a separate priming tool so that you don't have to use a hammer for seating primers. They also include a primer pocket cleaner and a crimping chamber (which is in conjunction with the expander).


and a couple of unusual.....a 270 win "unitized", a 300H+H.!!
mike in co, the unitized loader full-length resizes. I haven't tried one yet, but I'll bet it takes quite a few whacks to full-length resize a rifle round.

Good thread here. I've been following it for months.

Now, if I could only find one in .32 acp. I need to frequent the gunshows and keep my eyes open.

corvette8n
04-29-2009, 02:59 PM
here is my stash of Lee loaders so far:
.30-30
.308
.300 Savage
.338wm
.32ws
6.5 jap
7.63 Argie
.30 carbine
.45-70
.45 colt
.223
12ga.
funny thing is I don't even own a gun for some of them.

Does anyone know if Lee ever made them for 6.5 Carcano?

Green Frog
04-30-2009, 03:01 PM
You guys have the easy ones (to find.) How about a .25-35, a 32-40, and a .38-55 for the real classic rifles? [smilie=w: Of course these are the nicer sets with the neat primer tool... I got them from Dixie Gun Works years ago. Some of the boxes I have seen have Lee on them with a Mequon sticker over top of it. :confused: I think there were a couple of branches of the family that each got some of the product line. I am fairly certain that Mequon got the old pistol rest (like a cheap Ransom Rest) because once Mequon faded, the pistol inserts for the rest ( a different one for each kind of pistol) became unavailable as well. :-(

Has anyone ever taken one of the red plastic priming tools apart to see whether the shell holder is threaded like the ones made for the early pre-AutoPrime with the old style shell holders??

I'd love to hear more definitive info on the history of the various Lee iterations and spin offs including who made what and when. :coffee:

Froggie

stubshaft
04-30-2009, 03:22 PM
The shell holder in my red plastic priming tool (223 benchrest with reamer) is molded in place.

ktw
04-30-2009, 03:32 PM
The shell holder in my red plastic priming tool (223 benchrest with reamer) is molded in place.

They all are.

I think the question was: If you take it apart, which is likely to destroy the handle in the process, is the shellholder threaded and usable in the other metal priming tool or is the bottom half shaped differently and not usable in anything other than the red plastic handle that you just destroyed.

I have also had this question but haven't been willing to destroy the tool to find out.

-ktw

Green Frog
05-02-2009, 08:52 AM
What ktw said! :drinks: As usual, he understands what I am saying better than I say it. :brokenima Thanks, my friend.

Now, has anybody else had the same question? Did you actually take one apart to find out? Surely one of those plastic assemblies has gotten broken in use. Inquiring minds (at least 2 of them) want to know! :confused:

Froggie

Silicon Wolverine
05-12-2009, 04:38 PM
i have a couple that started out with me long ago. a standard 30-06 and a 243 win improved with the priming tool and micrometer adjustable bullet dies. what are they worth?

SW

jdgabbard
05-12-2009, 05:15 PM
The only real difference in the early kits is the powder dipper. The early kits use a dipper calibrated in cubic inches and the current kits have a dipper calibrated in cubic centimeters.

I wonder how many of those kits they have sold?

Off subject, but I recently aquired an entire set of the old lee dippers from that are copyrighted 1964. The funny thing is, that with most powders, they are still right on the spot.

Gadzooks Mike
06-12-2009, 08:56 AM
My Lee Engineering, not Lee Precision, 20ga and .30-30 loaders have the original dippers that were just given an arbitrary number, some where I have a Lee dipper set from Lee Engineering, too.
Used the .30-30 on .30-30, .303 Savage, 30-06 and .30-40 until I finally had room for a press.

So how did you squeeze the 303 Savage case into the 30-30 die? I've got a 30-30 loader and it will take a 30-30 case just fine, but the 303 Savage is a bit large for the die. The 30-06 is even bigger, but I don't have one of those anyway. I sure would like to pack a bullet for my old 303 Savage using the whack-a-mole, though.

hydraulic
06-12-2009, 09:52 PM
I found a set in .30-40 Krag at a gun show last weekend. $15. I think it has never been used. My first reloader was a 12 ga in the old red cardboard box. I wrote the date on the box when I bought it-1964.

WILCO
06-13-2009, 05:20 PM
I bought a 30-30 Lee Loader at Foster's Sproting Goods in Dallas, Oregon with part of $20 my Grand Mother gave me for my 15th birthday. Learned to reload with it on the tailgait of a PU parked on Main Street in front of the store (Polk County Courthouse is accross the street) with the help of a very fine old gentlemean. He showed me how to flair the case mouth with a tapered punch and gave me a dipper made from a steel 9mm case. The dipper was for Unique powder to load under the 118 gr 32-20 bullets he gave me (a coffee can full!). I was a confirmed reloader then.


Thanks for the story Larry. I could picture the whole scene in my minds eye. Small town America indeed! :-D

barrabruce
06-17-2009, 12:00 PM
I have a 30-30 lee loader and today started of sizing a few new cases.
It won't matter when I get to use cast but mine sizes the case necks down to .302 internal after being thought the die.
Is this too tight??

Should I polish it out some so it sizes to say .304-.305 thou or something??
Don't matter??
Just wondering as other stuff Iv'e used (presses)in other calibres have the little sizing olive that sizes the necks up to a.001 or 2 under calibre in the sizing die.
Cases will be used in a single shot. Not a magazine.

Barra

Rio Grande
06-23-2009, 09:21 PM
I have a 30-30 lee loader and today started of sizing a few new cases.
It won't matter when I get to use cast but mine sizes the case necks down to .302 internal after being thought the die.
Is this too tight??

Should I polish it out some so it sizes to say .304-.305 thou or something??
Don't matter??
Just wondering as other stuff Iv'e used (presses)in other calibres have the little sizing olive that sizes the necks up to a.001 or 2 under calibre in the sizing die.
Cases will be used in a single shot. Not a magazine.

Barra

I'm thinking that is a weak point of the Lee Loader. The neck sizer which just reduces the outside of the neck determines what the inside diameter will be. Varying case wall thicknesses equal problems. My problem is the opposite of the quoted poster, my 7.62x54r Lee Loader with the JMS-02 brass will allow a .308 bullet to just fall right in after sizing, but yes, it does work fine with .312 cast bullet. Trouble is, I want to load some .308 bullets.
I'm getting some mixed maker range brass in a couple of days and will send a report. I'll neck size with the Lee and report internal diameter sizes after sizing.
I'm also not thrilled with the Lee Loader's crimping 'feature'.
I don't use the priming tool in the Lee Loader, I use my Lee hand priming tool.
But all that said, I like the Lee Loader. The straight-line bullet seating is fine, and the tool can load some very accurate ammo.

I would really like to see more input from others re: both the good and bad points of the Lee Loader design from a technical standpoint.

big boar
06-23-2009, 10:31 PM
My brother Dave gave me one in 303 British about 35 years ago. I loaded countless hundreds with it and enjoyed every round I made. I didn't use it for years and then, just for the fun of it, last year I loaded a box with it. Now a friend, Al, wants to try loading so I loaned it to him last week. We were at Epps gun shop today looking for one in 30-30 but couldn't find one. Brings back a lot of pleasant memories using that tool. By the way, wish I could get one in 450 Marlin. I wonder if a 45-70 could be opened up at the base to use for this?

chris112
07-14-2009, 10:53 PM
Just in case anyone wants to know about it, there is a video on Youtube that shows Richard Lee using a Lee Loader. Something like 47 seconds start to finish for a round.

kjohn
10-16-2009, 01:45 AM
http://i48.photobucket.com/albums/f214/kjohn73/MRCkitax.jpg

UnderDawgAl
10-16-2009, 07:45 PM
In the post above, kjohn has posted a link to a picture of a Unitized Loader for the 6.5x55 rifle round. As I mentioned in an earlier post (#68, I believe), the unitized one full-length resizes the cartridge case. Pretty neat, huh? The regular Lee Loaders and the Improved Loaders both only neck-size.

Here's (http://www.riflemagazine.com/magazine/PDF/hl96partial.pdf) the evidence. The link is to the March-April 1982 issue of Handloader Magazine. If you'll scroll down to page 5 of the magazine (which is page 4 of the PDF file), you will see an ad for it on the right-hand side of the page. The old Lee Custom Engineering was reorganized as Mequon Reloading Corporation around the time Richard Lee was forced out.

I have no evidence to substantiate it, but I suspect the MRC items were priced too high to sell well. I found an old MRC Improved Loader in 357 Magnum that was priced at $20 around twenty-five years ago. Twenty bucks in 1984, according to the US Dept. of Labor's inflation calculator (http://data.bls.gov/cgi-bin/cpicalc.pl), would be $41.57 today, based on the actual inflation rate. Now that I think about it, that makes the prices on eBay for Lee Loaders look downright reasonable!

.357
10-27-2009, 12:48 PM
Love me the lee loader, I buy them when ever i see them. I love to buy them and teach new reloaders to reload on them it really breaks the loads down to the basics and I think that people get some really good understanding from that hands on experience. Any one got any spare ones to sell i'm usually game to buy them at a good price.

canebreaker
10-28-2009, 11:48 PM
Ok, what reloader are we talking about?
I have the org. 50th anns. kit, that came with the pack of shell holders for the auto primer in 1994.
Now it's called the breech loader kit.
All nickel cases .38spl. are loaded with 2.2 gr. bullseye, 120 rn. for flutterby.
All brass cases .38spl. are loaded with 4.1 gr. unquie(sp) 158 gr. swc for me.
I'll be glad when I run out of this stuff.
One son wants to help, but doesn't have a clue, need to teach him.
The other, doesn't have a clue????
They both want to shoot, but without help, they can keep their big A's at home.

mike in co
10-29-2009, 10:11 AM
Ok, what reloader are we talking about?
I have the org. 50th anns. kit, that came with the pack of shell holders for the auto primer in 1994.
Now it's called the breech loader kit.
All nickel cases .38spl. are loaded with 2.2 gr. bullseye, 120 rn. for flutterby.
All brass cases .38spl. are loaded with 4.1 gr. unquie(sp) 158 gr. swc for me.
I'll be glad when I run out of this stuff.
One son wants to help, but doesn't have a clue, need to teach him.
The other, doesn't have a clue????
They both want to shoot, but without help, they can keep their big A's at home.

that is not a LEE LOADER, that is a press/kit.....not the same. lee loaders are hand loading tools used WITHOUT a press, no shell holder.
mike in co

mike in co
01-06-2010, 08:07 PM
getting there.....

i just moved my lee loaders to a single location and was able to get a count.


95!....includes rifle/pistol/shotgun and 5 target models.

i have duplicates of several.....will be posting them in the for sale section...will probably consider trades.

mike in co

JSAND
02-27-2010, 01:28 AM
I am just wondering what the advantages of these kits are? I am new to this whole reloading concept. If you have a press and the dies for your particular caliber are in the same price range as this kit, is there some other reason to own them?

Old Ironsights
02-27-2010, 08:25 PM
500 SMP primers will fit into a single 35mm film canister. Keep 2 handy. A lb of a low volume powder like N340 (7gr/load - IIRC/YMMV) will get you nearly 1000 reloads, even using a dipper. Add scrounged lead, a good mould (like the 358156HP) and a campfire/stove and you are in business for a good long while... all in a 'kit' weighing less than 3 lbs.

THAT is the "advantage"...

mike in co
02-28-2010, 03:01 AM
I am just wondering what the advantages of these kits are? I am new to this whole reloading concept. If you have a press and the dies for your particular caliber are in the same price range as this kit, is there some other reason to own them?


cause they are very good at what they do, and the target versions are better than any conventional press.

they are very convienent for doing small batches of ammo.

having one for each rifle means you can leave it set for that rifle.

its a whole lot cheaper to get started with.

the down side is the tapping in of the primer......

some sets have a hand priming tool.

get a lee hand primming tool as your first upgrade.

get a scale for your second upgrade....

you don't need a work bench, you don't need to mount anything.

it can be done almost anywhere.

own one even tho you have dies...yes....i have a bunch of 308 win rifles. some are loaded in bulk on a dillon press, and most are loaded unique for each rifle with a individual lee loader labled for that rifle....


mike in co

mike in co
03-10-2010, 12:36 AM
i was at a gun show thi slast weekend and was able to pick up a cardboard box version of 7.62 russian( what we call 7.62x 54/53r). yes they still have the new plastic version available, and even back then they were 308 instead of 311 or so...

mike in co

lesslethal
05-12-2010, 05:00 PM
I'm not new to reloading, and certainly not an expert. But I am just getting into casting and loading some calibers that are new to me. (loading that is). Last night I ordered a lee 1000 in .45 COLT, and two original lee loaders in .45 colt and .38 special. If I hadn't found this thread I would probably not admitted :bigsmyl2: to the purchase of the two, at least until I had an opinion to express. Now that I know I'm in good company, I'm just downright Dixie proud of my purchase. Thanks guys. [smilie=w:[smilie=w:[smilie=w:
Oh yeah, I ordered a lee 255gr. .454 mold and a .38 158SWC mold too.

nkpwxman
07-13-2010, 12:09 PM
This is my first posting in a long time. I too have used Lee Loaders (.222, 12 ga, .308, .45 Colt). They go with me to the range in case I have to make adjustments. The .308 is my third one. The original is in different places right now for reasons I can't remember, but I keep one in my range box and one in my go anywhere else box in my travel trailer.

But most of all, I have an original Lee Reloading Handbook, First Edition that cost me $.98 back in 1971 that I bought with my first Lee Loader in .308. I used to refer to it when I loaded my .45 Colt or .308 as a starting point (don't anymore, after loading hundreds if not thousands of rounds). I also bought the Lee hand primer and the Lee Powder Measure Kit ( have three of those now).

Never had any real problems with these tools.

One other thing: Never carry primers outside their packaging. As a former ammo inspector for the Army, I have seen what primers can do when you have a chain reaction of primers going off, with some being more sensitive than others. Richard Lee has some good recommendations in his book for the quantity of primers to use in their auto priming tool. I concur with him on this.

winelover
08-12-2010, 06:39 PM
A friend just brought over a MRC Improved Loader for 357 Magnum. Seems to be a precision tool. It has the hand primer seater. There are no instructions per se. I figured out everything except for crimping the bullet. Not sure what part to use. BTW, I've never seen, let alone used a Lee Loader. Do these things full length resize straight walled cases? I did use RCBS case lube and pounded the case all the way in. I 'm guessing it can also be used for 38 Spl as long as there is enough adjustment in the seater stem. Haven't tried it to confirm.

Winelover:drinks:

BCall
08-12-2010, 06:45 PM
Yes, the 357 will do 38, just have to adjust load data. The 357 and 38 kits I have came with different scoops.

The "Improved" kits crimped with the case mouth expanding tool. Just flip it over, using the other end of the flaring tool, put it over the round and give it a few taps for the crimp. You can put too much or too little crimp, just kinda have to go by feel.

winelover
08-12-2010, 08:23 PM
Yes, the 357 will do 38, just have to adjust load data. The 357 and 38 kits I have came with different scoops.

The "Improved" kits crimped with the case mouth expanding tool. Just flip it over, using the other end of the flaring tool, put it over the round and give it a few taps for the crimp. You can put too much or too little crimp, just kinda have to go by feel.

Thats what I suspected but didn't want to try it until I was sure. Thanks. Probably wont use the scoop, just weigh charges with a scale.

Winelover:cbpour:

Combat Diver
08-14-2010, 11:55 AM
I've got about a dozen different Lee Handloader kits in different calibers. Started using them in the barracks in the Army and out of the rucksack in the field. I used to be able to reload a box of 50 .41 Mag 215 gr LSWC with 2400 in 1 hour. Would do that in the evening after an afternoon of shooting my M57. It bet studying more Arabic after a 8 hour day of it already.

http://www.leeprecision.com/graphics/shoppingcart/leeloader.jpg
http://www.leeprecision.com/html/catalog/cleeloader.html

Nathez Shooters Supply has them for $19.99
http://www.natchezss.com/brand.cfm?brand=LE&startRow=201

CD

Indio
12-12-2010, 05:01 AM
Hey people.. I've recently picked up a Lee Loader kit in 45-70 and in the instructions it mentions you can get an optional flare tool for loading cast bullets. I checked the Lee web site but it doesn't list one for 45-70 but it does list one for the 45 Colt kit.. Do you think that would work ok?

http://www.leeprecision.com/graphics/parts/1600.jpg

Old Ironsights
12-12-2010, 11:26 AM
Just call Lee and order one. They're really good about that.

frankenfab
02-12-2011, 01:59 PM
This is a neat thread. I only have 1 Lee Loader, in .224 Weatherby. It's as new in the cardboard box, and the list in the box of available calibers back then is around 118 calibers if I remember right.

lead-1
02-19-2011, 04:23 AM
I loaded up some .30 carbine and 9mm rounds with the lee loader and just picked up a .25-06. My son asked how they work so I showed him and he laughed at me, he said all that for one little round.
I just told him that someday I hoped he would understand, lol.

luna butte
03-05-2011, 03:06 PM
i recently bought a LL in 3030 and reloaded half a box. after loading them i tried to crimp them, but uh... it seems a bit iffy to me. what is the correct method of crimping a 3030 bullet as far as the LL is concerned?
thanks a bunch.

Ziptar
03-09-2011, 11:05 AM
I'vee trying to find old catalogs to look this up but, did lee ever make 45 Colt versions of the Improved or target loaders that did full length resizing?

Swampthing762
03-11-2011, 05:03 PM
Gentlemen, I am a first time poster here. I recently bought a Lee/MRC Unitized Loader in 30-06 Springfield that included only a photocopy of the instructions, and a faded copy at that. Is there anyone here that could make me a legible photocopy of the instructions and mail them to me, please? If so, please respond and I will send mailing address via PM. thanks!

ST762

45nut
03-11-2011, 05:32 PM
http://www.leeprecision.com/cgi-data/instruct/RE1422.pdf

have a look at those,, might help!

Swampthing762
03-11-2011, 05:53 PM
45nut,

Those are the instructions for the current model of loader, of which I have a copy for my 30-06 for boltie. I recently got my father's rem 742 which is semi auto. I was hoping to be able to get a copy of the Unitized Loader Directions. I do not think that Lee still has them on file. Thank you, I do appreciate the thoughtfulness.

St762

ST

BudRow
03-15-2011, 02:53 PM
I don't think they recommend using the Lee Loaders for auto, semi-auto or any rifle that does not have robust camming power to chamber. That leaves pretty much bolt actions. These loaders only resize the neck portion of the cartridge leaving the body to expand a little more with each reload. If you load on the light side you may get a few loads before you need to full length resize. Best Wishes, Bud

Swampthing762
03-16-2011, 02:07 AM
Budrow,

I found a unitized loader on ebay and have a bid in on it. It is an excuse to buy a varmint rifle. If I win I will scan the directions and have them posted here.

St762

Dave Bulla
03-16-2011, 11:22 PM
I've been a big fan of them for years too. I've given several away to young shooters to get started with. NOTHING else comes close to it for understanding the reloading process in it's simplest terms.

By the way, I'm in dire need of one of these in 32-20 if anyone has an extra. If you do, feel free to pm me. I've got the rifle on layaway and hope to have it in about two weeks. I'd like to have the loader for my youngest boy to be able to load some of his own ammo.

ChefJeff1
03-18-2011, 02:26 AM
I just joined the Lee Loader Club. I was using one for my 30-30. I need to call and get an expander. I like it because I can fit the tool, case trimmer, and chamferer all in the box. I used IMR 3031 and a 170 grain cast booolit with the 2.2 dipper that came with it. Should be good. I do have a few questions though---

Has anyone customized one of the dippers to measure exactly what you want? I think you could easily sand one down to fine tune it

Has anyone had a problem loading the 30-30 with this tool as far as only neck sizing???

Well, I like it but I'm sure my neighbor won't like it so I'll be courteous and not bang on it at night. [smilie=b: wakie, wakie...:killingpc

I want one for each caliber now.

Jeff

BudRow
03-18-2011, 05:15 AM
Rather than sanding your dipper, try adding some "filler" like a cardboard disc that is a friction fit in the bottom or maybe some tape to decrease the diameter. That way you don't ruin the originality of the loader. Best Wishes, Bud

ChefJeff1
03-18-2011, 11:01 AM
:Bright idea: Great idea, Bud. I like it.

luna butte
03-18-2011, 11:24 AM
you can try different types of material to load on, say a cynderblock or a piece o f fire wood. i shoe horses for a living and i deal with lots of banging noise allday long. there are several methods to reduce the noise level, one of the more popular methods of quieting up an anvil is to place a wound up rope between the anvil and the anvil stand. if you think about it, i am sure that you could set up something that will deaden the sound enough to load at all hours of the day.

ChefJeff1
03-18-2011, 11:40 PM
yea, I'm thinkin' a rope or thick rubber kitchen mat under a large round of firewood, got lots of those.

So, I'm asking for a friend who wants a 1911 real bad...how does the lee loader work for that caliber? it being an autoloaer and all...:Fire:

hk33ka1
03-19-2011, 01:37 AM
I believe several of the Pistol cal Loaders full length size and should work fine for auto pistol, other than they are slower than most press set ups.

koyote
04-07-2011, 08:43 PM
I looked at these when I started reloading. In retrospect, I'm sorta glad I didn't go that route first because I found a few good deals on things and learned a lot.

But I'm thinkin I missed a thing or two starting with the hand press and breech lock presses.

Given the "individuality" of a lot of surplus rifles, I think I might buy a loader first instead of dies for my gewehr 88 and 91/30.

Ziptar
04-21-2011, 10:37 PM
I'vee trying to find old catalogs to look this up but, did lee ever make 45 Colt versions of the Improved or target loaders that did full length resizing?


Answered my own question. :grin:

A 45 Colt Improved Loader came up on eBay last week. I managed to win it, I thought it would go for more than it did. I've yet to run across one, its even Mequon branded. The auction ended at $41.00, almost spot on UnderDawgAl's inflation adjusted price.

http://www.ziptar.com/reloading/Lee_Improved_Loader_45_Colt.jpg

It is a big improvement over the regular Loader. The hand priming tool is nice, it looks like it'll full length size but, the best thing about it is the dipper.

A single dipper full is all thats needed to get a good load with Unique. With the yellow .7 dipper in the regular loader the load is too low.

I've also started using the regular Loader on my big ugly arbor press. It works pretty well. I deprimed 200 cases last weekend in about 15 minutes.

I think the regular loader full length sizes the 45 Colt. I started sizing cases with a Lyman full length sizer and ran a bunch through the Lee loader and vice versa. Seems like either one is doing it, the sized cases go in real easy when I run the case through the other again.

NATE40
04-26-2011, 12:07 AM
I started handloading with a lee loader given to me by a older than Moses benchrest shooter I was about 16 years old and would go to the range almost every day in the summer he taught me to load and to shoot right on the range with a lee loader and mallet. that was over 30 years ago and quite a few presses (single,turret and progressives) and tons of reloading gadgets I still go to the ranges with my trusty lee loader Because its still the best way to find a proper seating depth with trial and error group shooting for each gun as they change as you shoot them

Swampthing762
05-13-2011, 06:06 PM
Now trying to find 30-06 target loader. also started thread in swappin an dsellin.

Junior1942
05-14-2011, 09:10 AM
I......Has anyone customized one of the dippers to measure exactly what you want? I think you could easily sand one down to fine tune it.......Jeff

I made a set in .1cc increments from 1.6cc through 2.6cc, IIRC. Simply heat the bottom of a dipper and push it out to increase the capacity or push it in to decrease the capacity.

RE-LABEL THE NEW DIPPER SIZE!!! I filed off the old numbers and added new numbers with heated number punches. Force a black Sharpie into the new number for easier readability.

Sanding down didn't work due to making the sharp dipper rim flat, meaning it caught powder grains.

Char-Gar
05-14-2011, 10:30 AM
I remember when the Lee loader was just about the only product Lee made. They were slow, but could load ammo of the same quality as could be produced on the most expensive Hollywood set up.

I have an old Belding and Mull hand tool for 38 Special. Not any bigger than a deck of cards, but produces fine ammo. Slow..very slow.

Today the emphasis seems to be on faster and more. That is fine if folks NEED faster and more. However, faster and more does not mean better than slower and less.

ubetcha
05-14-2011, 10:56 AM
many years ago, I was a range officer at a local sport shop that had an indoor range that had bulleye leagues. Dick Lee sr was a shooter on the league.On night we were talking about bullets and molds.He asked me if I have ever tryed a light bullet in my 357 for light target loads.I said that the lightest bullet I found was the 148gr wc. The following week he gave me a mold for a 116gr wc and said to try it and see how it works and if it didnt I could throw it out. I still have that mold because as far as I know, It's a one of a kind and given to me by Dick sr himself.I don't remember how well it worked in my Ruger,but a fellow ranger officer love it in his S&W because he had a wrist issue and the light bullet recoiled much less even in light target loads. It shot quite well for him. I will have to try it again sometime.I have alway had good results with Lee products also

Ziptar
05-18-2011, 08:37 PM
I came across this handy spreadsheet Lee Dipper cross reference a week or so ago.

I wish I could remember where so I could give the original author his due.

http://www.ziptar.com/reloading/LeeDippers20100105.xls

nanuk
05-23-2011, 06:34 AM
500 SMP primers will fit into a single 35mm film canister. Keep 2 handy. A lb of a low volume powder like N340 (7gr/load - IIRC/YMMV) will get you nearly 1000 reloads, even using a dipper. Add scrounged lead, a good mould (like the 358156HP) and a campfire/stove and you are in business for a good long while... all in a 'kit' weighing less than 3 lbs.

THAT is the "advantage"...


EXACTLY!

Sometimes we need to rethink our tooling.

when was the last time you saw someone in hunting camp with a Dillon in the tent?

Swampthing762
05-24-2011, 10:15 AM
That is the advantage of the Lee Loaders, including the shotgun sets. We shoot skeet down at the hunting camp, sometimes, and I usually get to shoot longer than everyone else because I bring a .50 caliber ammo can with my little black box Lee Classic Loader for 2.75 Inch 12 gauge with the nylon crimp starters, a pound of powder, 100 primers, wads, and 100 ozs of shot.

However, the rest of the guys are getting wise to me. Now they bring extra shot and components to hunting camp. That's ok. I tell them I get to keep one box of empties for every 100 hulls shot. I have a perpetual stash of once-fired hulls, and they get to shoot at least 75 more shots.

ST762

plmitch
06-20-2011, 04:14 AM
I'm new to reloading and just bought my first Lee Loader in7.62x54r and am looking forward to trying it out.

Swampthing762
06-20-2011, 09:30 AM
plmitch,

The LCL is a great way to learn. it is how I learned, an I still use them.

ST762

m1g
06-20-2011, 04:06 PM
I aslo started with one many years ago. Mine was for 44 mag.

troy_mclure
06-20-2011, 04:33 PM
ive been buying them when i see them cheap(<$20) even for cartridges i dont shoot.

Old Ironsights
06-25-2011, 11:26 PM
I've got to get a x54 for my Mosin...

FWest
07-23-2011, 09:12 AM
Just came across a few at a local flea market. Interesting tools.

Swampthing762
07-25-2011, 12:57 PM
that 22-250 shoud make some nice ammo.

ST762

0verkill
08-04-2011, 01:13 PM
And if you want to get rid of them, I'll buy the 7.7. Been looking for one for a while.

I sat outside and got 23 loads out of a single 303 British case before it finally swelled too much and I had to full length size it a few months back. Best spring afternoon in recent memory.

725
08-04-2011, 06:58 PM
How much do you want for the 6.5 Jap? I'd be interested.

grullaguy
08-05-2011, 01:45 AM
When paper patching I bell the neck a bit to aid loading the patched bullets in my 303 cases.

Last night I was complaining that I had two sets of 303 dies and neither gives a decent squeeze to the cartridge neck after it is loaded. I then remembered that a number of decades ago when I had little funds, that I used to neck size using a loading die from a 30-06 Lee Loader.
I found the old Lee Loader on a back shelf,.. pulled it down and sure enough, the shoulder to neck transition is a perfect neck crimper for a 303.

Larry Gibson
08-05-2011, 09:39 AM
Not sure I posted this in this thread but here some useful accouterments and tips to accompany the Lee Loader;

Excellent way to start reloading, I started that way myself in the early ‘60s.

A couple tips;

Get;
One of the larger MTM storage boxes, one with an internal tray, as it will hold all your reloading stuff.

A plastic headed mallet. These are available at most hardware/lumber yards.

Some 0000 steel wool to clean the outside of the neck. A small tuft wrapped around the neck and twisted does a quick job. May also be used with discretion to clean the outside of the cases.

A clean bore brush one size larger than the caliber you are loading for on a small pistol rod to clean the inside of the necks. Push it straight in and slightly twist pulling it out. Usually one pass cleans the carbon and debris out pretty well.

A small screw driver to clean the primer pocket but the Lee primer pocket cleaner is inexpensive and works well.

The Lee chamfer tool to chamfering the inside of the case mouth and the outside if necessary. A small knife blade will do also for the inside.

The Lee hand priming tool is almost a must unless you want the be-jesus scared out of you when a primer pops tapping them in.

A Lee powder funnel, works much better than pouring through the sizer.

A tapered punch or needle nosed pliers can be used to flair the case mouth if you are loading cast bullets.

A loading block to hold the cases that you’ve put powder into.

Nice, or next to have;

Lee’s powder dippers.
A good powder scale.
A powder trickler.
At least one good reloading manual, Lyman’s is recommended.
A dial caliper.

All the above will fit into the MTM box.

Most of the above will also be required or useful when you advance to a single or progressive press.

Larry Gibson

barrabruce
08-06-2011, 10:40 AM
I just made a flareing tool with a piece of rod a few thou other my intended diameter.
Chuck it in the drill and file a every long taper .
Few thou other an 2" or so.
Polish of course.
Heat the other end and push it into a drilled handle.
The narrow end should go in the sized cases and if you file a flat you can mark a Diameter or two for different sizes.
Put in push twist and pull out.
Perfect.
Well works for me.


For crimpimg the 30-30.

Lightly tap the shell in the shell holeder with the die turned up side down.
Rotate it a bit and light taps should get used to it.

I have see someone make a "spacer" that goes in the die body and fits the case with tha appropriate legnth.
Gives a uniform crimp and holds the case aligned in the die.
Good for one length..but could I suppose make it adjustable.

Powder tricker use an empty some other type case.
I rest mine on my ammo box lid. It has a sort of groove in it and is pretty good for the height.
I just roll it away from me with a bit of powder in it and it trickles out nice.
Empty case when finished and the other calibre is so I can't reload it by some unforseen reason.

Hope it helps
Barra

rollmyown
08-07-2011, 08:46 AM
Has anone tried opening up the neck sizeing part of the die to allow for correct neck tension when seating fat boolits, eg (.316/.317) in 303 british?

barrabruce
08-07-2011, 04:04 PM
Yeah.. I honed mine out with some emery in a slotted rod.
The same as you would a cylinder bore in a car.
Then a bit of polish.

Mine comes out now perfect at 308 in my 30-30 and not real tight.
I then use my "flaring tool to open it up for cast or Paper patching.

Works well.
I also "adjusted " it to only partially size the neck

I also have bogged mine up with some plastic steel on a "well used case" to make a more as if " cut with my guns chamber reamer" type fit and alignment.

Don't know if it does noth'in ...but..me cases don't get worked hard anyway.

Barra

rollmyown
08-07-2011, 07:51 PM
Yeah.. I honed mine out with some emery in a slotted rod.
The same as you would a cylinder bore in a car.
Then a bit of polish.

Mine comes out now perfect at 308 in my 30-30 and not real tight.
I then use my "flaring tool to open it up for cast or Paper patching.

Works well.
I also "adjusted " it to only partially size the neck

I also have bogged mine up with some plastic steel on a "well used case" to make a more as if " cut with my guns chamber reamer" type fit and alignment.

Don't know if it does noth'in ...but..me cases don't get worked hard anyway.

Barra

Nice work Barra. I've just ordered a set in 303 brit. I'll have a fiddle with the sizer when the kit arrives.

Green Frog
08-08-2011, 08:56 PM
ive been buying them when i see them cheap(<$20) even for cartridges i dont shoot.

I'm still looking for a .32-20 set, but no joy yet. :confused: Does anybody out there have one they would like to use for some really neat trade??[smilie=w:

Froggie

QUON
09-08-2011, 01:32 PM
Thank you zitar for the x ref sheet.

Ziptar
09-08-2011, 08:35 PM
QUON, You are welcome!

I forgot to mention my new addition I picked up Saturday. I went to a gun show and a guy had a whole messy table of Lee Stuff but, what caught my eye was a bunch of Lee loaders. Two good stacks of them, the seller didn't even really know what he has, he just had set prices for stuff according to the pile it was in.

I got a complete 12 ga 2-3/4" Deluxe Loader with the wad guide, fingers, 6 point and 8 point crimp starters for $20.00. Seller thought it was a box of dippers... I don't think he ever opened it. I've been trying to get a hold of one without paying eBay prices for a year.

At the bottom of another pile I also found a Target Zero Error loader in 30-06 complete and in really good shape. I held it up and asked the seller "You know what this is?" he responded with "Yeah, It's $50.00". It bugged me to walk away and leave it there, so I haggled with him a bit and bought it.

It's now on the way to one of our forum's members, I didn't really make a profit but, at least it'll be properly appreciated. :smile:

Ziptar
09-23-2011, 06:55 PM
Now I've seen it all.....

A 12 Gauge 2-3/4" Lee Loader just sold on eBay for $102.50. (http://www.ebay.com/itm/180726137888) It wasn't even the deluxe version.

If this keeps up we are going to have to have our Lee Loaders insured like priceless works of art... :-P

http://www.ziptar.com/reloading/lee_loader_on_ebay.jpg

plmitch
09-23-2011, 08:32 PM
Now I've seen it all.....

A 12 Gauge 2-3/4" Lee Loader just sold on eBay for $102.50. (http://www.ebay.com/itm/180726137888) It wasn't even the deluxe version.

If this keeps up we are going to have to have our Lee Loaders insured like priceless works of art... :-P

http://www.ziptar.com/reloading/lee_loader_on_ebay.jpg



sweet, I'm going to sell off my 12 ga. loader and become a hundredaire

0verkill
10-06-2011, 12:19 PM
I have one of those, a 20 ga and a deluxe 12 and 16 ga. Imight be able to retire early AND keep all my metallic LEE Loaders.

UNIQUEDOT
10-09-2011, 09:31 PM
I have one of those, a 20 ga and a deluxe 12 and 16 ga. Imight be able to retire early AND keep all my metallic LEE Loaders.

Well there is definitely some idiots out there with plenty of money and partial brains.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/vintage-LEE-LOADER-20-Ga-gauge-Shell-reloading-2-3-4-Shells-/280748515150?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item415dea5f4e

Texantothecore
12-01-2011, 04:37 PM
I love the Lee Classic Loader. I went from using a single stage press to the LCL because it makes incredibly accurate rounds and it is really satisfying to load a single round at a time, complete. I get the same speed or slightly faster than a single stage press but I place ever tool in the same spot after I use it. I think I do one in about 22 seconds using a 16 oz hammer.

For those of you who are not familiar with the benefits of the LCL, let me count the ways I love it:
My field bag will hold:
Lee classic Loader + neck flaring tool
Hand Press with the Factory Crimp die
About 1/3 lb. of powder in a Tupperware type sandwhich box
At least one hundred rounds of .45-70
Full set of Lee Dippers
100 Primers
4 oz gunsmith hammer ( I use 16 oz plastic faced hammer at home)

I frequently load at the range and an afternoon spent working up loads is golden. I also meet a lot of people: They always ask "What is that?" and I teach them how to load using the LCL and have them shoot the rounds that they have reloaded. Fun stuff. I hope they have gone home and ordered one or more as they are a real blast to use.

In the field, you can use a hammer, a branch, a rock, tire iron, anything that has some weight to it.

I haven't tried it for the .45 ACP, but I think I am going to buy one and try it out.

Maven
12-01-2011, 08:49 PM
"My field bag will hold: Lee classic Loader + neck flaring tool...."

Texantothecore, The Lee Loaders in handgun calibers include a neck flaring tool as did the older (black cardboard box) Lee Loaders for rifle calibers.

jcwit
12-01-2011, 10:58 PM
Not all of the Lee Loaders are out of sight pricewise. Grabbed 2 within the last month for $34.45 for both, shipping encl. One was 30 cal carbine, the other was 38 Spec/357 Mag.

I do see some guy with a .32 Win, Spec wanting $100.00 bucks starting for it.

UNIQUEDOT
12-02-2011, 01:40 AM
I do see some guy with a .32 Win, Spec wanting $100.00 bucks starting for it.

Wow! that is just ridiculous!!! I used to collect the things and i had some that were somewhat rare and i had them for shotshells in every ga. and length offered, but when i sold them off i only asked ten bucks each for them. The only one i kept was a 2.75" 12 ga. just because i like to use it every now and then.

Dave Bulla
12-02-2011, 02:59 PM
I've seen that $99 32 special too. I don't think he's gonna get any bites but you never know.

The one I want is a 2.5" 410 but I'd prefer not to pay over $50 for one and that just doesn't often happen. I've seen some go for less but I missed the end of the auction on them. Usually they end up in the $60 to $80 range.

All I want to do is load some shells for the kids and I to hunt rabbits and squirrels with. I love the two and a half inch 410's loaded with 4 shot for bunnies. Absolutely deadly and don't tear them up. Totally the opposite direction most people go but an old friend told me about it and after I tried them, I've used nothing else since. The bigger bb's really help on a tough critter like a squirrel too. Just have to be sensible about shot distance.

Green Frog
12-02-2011, 05:08 PM
Just like anything else, if it isn't selling in big enough numbers, the bean counters kill it off. Then, since not many were made, and they can't be bought new anymore, folks who never thought of needing one now can't live without it! Add to that folks like yours truly who try to get special gear for oddball obsolete calibers to support their personal shooting habits, and the discontinued uncommon calibers get pricey in a hurry. Of course there are those who ask (and those who pay) entirely too much for stuff just because it is discontinued... somebody once said there was one of those folks born about every 60 seconds or so! :roll: BTW, I'm still trying to find that .32-20 set to go with my S&W M&P in that caliber! :coffee:

Froggie

BKS
12-17-2011, 11:18 PM
Question here, please. Got lee loaders for several calibers and Lee trim gauges, etc. I am having trouble keeping a consistent over all length on the cartridges..

What am I doing wrong?

DHB
01-02-2012, 01:07 AM
My first reloading was on the living room floor in about 1976. I had a rawhide mallet and a 38 special Lee Loader (still have it). I could not afford to shoot so that Lee Loader took good care of me. I have a mess of them now plus 5 target models.
DHB

0verkill
01-06-2012, 12:55 PM
Question here, please. Got lee loaders for several calibers and Lee trim gauges, etc. I am having trouble keeping a consistent over all length on the cartridges..

What am I doing wrong?

It's probably the lock nut. Tapping the unit with a mallet causes it to loosen. It seems more of a problem with the pistol calibers to me with the bullet seating system they use. Tighten the lock ring as tight as you can and check every few rounds to see if it loosens. Check for lube build up on the seating stem as well. If that doesn't cure the problem maybe someone else can help or has more ideas.

heathydee
01-11-2012, 02:40 AM
My 30-30 Lee Loader has benefitted from the addition of the Lee chamfer tool and case trimming tools . Also a homemade neck flaring tool and a nylon sleeve to both keep the cartridge aligned as the crimp is applied and limit the amount of crimp .
http://castboolits.gunloads.com/imagehosting/3164f0d2ae1c87eb.jpg
All of the extra bits can cram in the original box .
http://castboolits.gunloads.com/imagehosting/3164f0d2b3d8f5b0.jpg
The crimping sleeve works as follows .
http://castboolits.gunloads.com/imagehosting/3164f0d2ae216fe3.jpg
http://castboolits.gunloads.com/imagehosting/3164f0d2ae256b55.jpg
http://castboolits.gunloads.com/imagehosting/3164f0d2b3d4429e.jpg

0verkill
01-11-2012, 03:01 PM
That nylon sleeve is a great idea and something I'd never seen before. Anything that elps make more uniform ammunition is good. What did you scrounge the nylon from? Did you take measurements to determine optimum length of the sleeve or just trial and error?

heathydee
01-11-2012, 04:20 PM
That nylon sleeve is a great idea and something I'd never seen before. Anything that elps make more uniform ammunition is good. What did you scrounge the nylon from? Did you take measurements to determine optimum length of the sleeve or just trial and error?

I obtain nylon in various diameters from my local bearing supply but if a piece was not available the sleeve could be made out of aluminium or steel .
The sleeve was machined too long to begin with and then trimmed to suit . The need to apply a consistent crimp came about when I was comparing ammunition reloaded with the Lee Loader to ammunition loaded with a press and Lee dies ; specificaly the Collet Neck Sizing die and Factory Crimp die . Once I sorted out the crimping feature of the Lee Loader , there was no difference in the quality of ammunition loaded by either method .
It must be mentioned that the trial was conducted in my Winchester 94 AE . That is why the rounds had to be crimped.

Dave Bulla
01-23-2012, 02:20 PM
heathydee,

Great minds must think alike!

Just the other day I went to our machine shop at work and talked to one of the machinists about making a tool exactly like that. I didn't think of using nylon but the idea of a centering bushing for the round and cutting it to a length that allowed it to bottom out at a perfect crimp were the two main points I was trying to get across to him.

He's a gun guy too but in all honesty, he just seemed to think "If you can't get a good crimp with this tool, why use it? Why not just use regular loading dies?" All I could say was "Well, I just LIKE these kits."

Were you able to come up with a gap measurement that worked best for you? Looks like between a 64th and a 32nd but if you measured it in .000's, that would be great.

Do you feel there is any advantage to they nylon? I'm thinking maybe it might slide better over the case but also that it might distort over time a little or might have some give to it. Is your hole for the case a super precise fit or did you just drill and or ream it for a slip fit?

heathydee
01-24-2012, 02:39 AM
I just checked the gap measurement at twenty thousandths. That is with a newly trimmed case.The hole in the sleeve measures .430". I think I used an 11mm drill to drill this hole and it is an easy fit over the case .
As far as using nylon for the sleeve goes , I thought the nylon would be tough enough to withstand repeated use and also provide a buffer between the two steel parts . As it happens only gentle tapping is needed to form the crimp and this shock absorbing function is not really necessary and I now believe steel or aluminium could be used if that is all that can be found .
I came up with this improvement while I was comparing ammunition loaded with a Lee Loader to ammunition loaded with a set of Lee dies . The caliber was 30-30 and all rounds fired in my 94 Winchester . All rounds were fed through the magazine and that is why they had to be crimped .

All documented on another forum . Here if anyone is interested .

http://garagegunsmithing.com/index.php?option=com_jfusion&Itemid=54&jfile=viewtopic.php&f=32&t=756

Dave Bulla
01-24-2012, 03:31 AM
heathydee,

Thanks a bunch for posting that link. Very well done and informative comparison.

Did you build you bushing to bottom out in the top of the die on the relieved portion? I'm definitely going to sit down and measure up my various kits and draw specs for the machine shop guys at my work to make some of these for me.

heathydee
01-24-2012, 11:01 PM
heathydee,
Did you build you bushing to bottom out in the top of the die on the relieved portion?

No Dave . The reduced diameter part of the sleeve is only there to center it in the die body .

Hang Fire
01-31-2012, 01:07 AM
I frequent the same local gun shops around here. When I spot something I may interested in, but not willing to pay the asking prices, I just wait a few months and see if they have moved. Then I will ask what they will sell it for?

Today I picked up two whack'em LL for ten bucks each, a .300 Savage and like new .30-06.

I still have the original Lee loaders I bought in the early 1960s and others have picked up since.

When things were budget tight, had a Mauser 98K at the time and a Lee loader for it. 8 mm Boxer primed brass was not that plentiful, so had a buddy rechamber the Mauser for the 8mm/06 wildcat. But then what to do? I contacted Lee and asked if they could ream my 8 mm die body out to 06 dimensions and what I wanted it for, they said yes. Sent it in and got back in a few days, with NC for the work or shpg. I have never forgotten that and have bought many Lee products since. Thanks to Lee, a few grains of Bullseye and some cream of wheat, I fire formed many a case and put more than a little venison on the table with that 8 mm/06.

When I later sold the Mauser, the guy wanted the LL too, so it went bye, bye.

303british.com
01-31-2012, 06:57 PM
What a great thread!

I'm glad these kits are still being made, although in not as many calibres as before. Some are becoming collector's items, that's for sure!

I read through all the posts on this thread and cannot add too much other than to say that Richard Lee's idea is still going strong. LL used to hold records for tiny groups. I don't know how many records (if any) are still on the books.

Even in 2012, I'll take a LL to the range, if I've got one for that cartridge. I'm still making memories with them!

http://www.303british.com/id31.html

Reload3006
01-31-2012, 07:09 PM
The old classic lee loader as I am sure someone has already pointed out is a great hand loading tool that has won a few national matches. Its truly amazing how accurate the ammo is that this tool produces. Its only draw back is its greatest asset and that is it neck sizes only. So if you are using it to load ammo for your gun that was fired in someone elses gun you could be asking for trouble.

Hang Fire
01-31-2012, 10:18 PM
I, along with many others am sure, looking for one in .410 shotgun.

Dave Bulla
02-01-2012, 10:58 PM
Heathydee,

Got my bushing made! Had mine made for my 45-70 and it works great. Absolutely beautiful crimp. Can't wait to try it with some live rounds. All I've done so far was a couple dummy rounds with components I took to work. Didn't want to get in trouble for taking primers or powder so just took a couple empty cases and some boolits to try it. We used the white delrin plastic and it looks just like yours. I wanted steel but since the machinist was being nice enough to do it, I didn't "insist" and let him run with what he had.

Now I just need..... lets see.... 30-30, 32-20, 35 Rem, 357, 44 mag, 45 colt... dang, better think of a "gift" for the machinist!

p.s. Figured out that it also can be used when belling the case mouth for cast lead boolits with the little Lee expander tool. Just slip it over the case a little ways, drop the expander down from the top and hold it so they are aligned with about half of the expander sticking out the top and give it a tap. Nice squarely aligned flare.

0verkill
02-04-2012, 09:56 AM
I, along with many others am sure, looking for one in .410 shotgun.

I think I'm going to break down and make one myself. The shotgun LEE Loaders don't resize, so they'll be easier.

There are still a lot of metallic cartridges I wish they were made for.

Ben-WSU
02-05-2012, 04:30 AM
I have three Lee Loader and finally got one out and used it. It made for some fun loading and nice plinking 223 ammo.

My video:
http://youtu.be/sjRzeZJaHpI

0verkill
02-06-2012, 03:15 PM
So Ben-WSU, are you hooked yet?

A tip for getting the best accuracy with LEE loaders is to try several different powders. Even if you have a full set of dippers they are graduated in .3cc increments which can be quite a bit of difference in charge weight. Since you can't vary charge weight vary what powder you use.

Mike 56
02-06-2012, 03:27 PM
I have a set of cheap wad punches from Harbor Fright. I punch disc out of soap boxes and put them in the bottom of Lee dippers to adjust powder charges. When i find a pet load i make a dipper out of a shell casing.

stubshaft
02-06-2012, 04:04 PM
A tip for getting the best accuracy with LEE loaders is to try several different powders. Even if you have a full set of dippers they are graduated in .3cc increments which can be quite a bit of difference in charge weight. Since you can't vary charge weight vary what powder you use.

For best accuracy in any cartridge, use several different powders until you find that magical powder/boolit combination.

725
02-07-2012, 12:57 AM
Overkill,
If you have success with making a .410 "Lee" loader, be sure to give us a blow by blow on your progress. I've wanted a .410 for a long time. By watching you, maybe I'll be able to, too.

Ben-WSU
02-10-2012, 12:05 AM
Overkill,

Yes, the LL is addicting. I need to try more loads in my 223 and try and find something faster (with jacketed bullets). I typically shoot at gongs with the 223 so accuracy doesn't have to be fantastic.

I have about 750 bullets for the 223 that are from a 22-Bator mold (Midsouthshooters supply) that I need to try. Maybe the LL will work with that.

My other LL is for a 243. I have never used it, but when I loaded 70 grain Speer TNT bullets and used dippers with (I think) Varget, I got fantastic groups. Even a light load in 243 gives impressive velocity, so I wasn't worried about getting to max. I will have to take the 243, the LL, and some components to the range for some fun.

-Ben

Ben
02-10-2012, 01:41 PM
Hello Ben,

I like that name, has a catchy ring to it.

Ben

palmettosunshine
02-16-2012, 11:04 PM
Love my Lee Loader in 44 Special.

plmitch
02-16-2012, 11:41 PM
Lee loaders are just great. I'm putting together a range box for my grandson and oldest granddaughter and have put in acouple of loaders so far with other stuff. Loader were the first thing they learned to load with.

Blacksmith
02-17-2012, 09:12 PM
I learned to load with a Lee Loader in .222 Remington. I still have the trophy I won at the club match it really makes you feel good to shoot well with ammo you made.

I have LL's for all the common calibers I shoot except the two I am missing are 6.8mm SPC and .410 shotgun I keep looking. My Lee Loaders go in my bug out bag.

If they ever outlaw reloading a progressive press is going to be hard to hide but a Lee Loader will fit just about anywhere.

0verkill
03-10-2012, 05:23 AM
Overkill,
If you have success with making a .410 "Lee" loader, be sure to give us a blow by blow on your progress. I've wanted a .410 for a long time. By watching you, maybe I'll be able to, too.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Original-Lee-Loader-For-410-Shotgun-/110836592713?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item19ce603049

They're so cheap I may as well buy one!

monge
03-10-2012, 10:25 AM
i used the 12ga for about two years with no problems loaded 1000s of rounds on it bought a mec used the only difference I see is the mec crimps a little better!
If you get one get the primer feeder its an opt. and makes loading go faster.

windy
04-15-2012, 12:52 PM
i've been usin' lee loaders fer about 40 y'ars now, and have acquired a fair stack of 'em, as my gun kerleckshun rotated. i now have several i'd trade; a 6.5x55 swede, a 280 rem, most of a 7x57 (i keep breakin' th' pins offa th' primer punches and th' shafts offa th' rammers) a 7.65 mauser, and a 3" .410 and two 12 gauges. i'm lookin' fer a 9x57, a lebel 8x50R, a 32-40, a 22 hi-power, an 8x56ms, and a 16 gauge. for th' time bein' i'm keepin' th' 6.5x54ms, one 7x57, th' 8x57, th' 32-20, th' 257 roberts, th' 32 special, and one 12-gauge. i've found them rammers go all to pieces ef ye try to use 'em on them j-word slugs with th' plastic tips; somehow they cain't take th' rebound, er sumpthin'. so i don't use them kinda projectiles, no more, even if somebody gives 'em to me fer free! it sure is comfortin' to an old man to know there's something as simple and honest as a lee loader that'll keep on working in this modern age--now if i could jist find a rotary phone, a studebaker pickup, and 30-cent gas to run it, i'd be happier'n a pig in...mud!
mind yer topknots!
windy

"sonny, whar i growed up, 'magnum' was jist another word for 'lousy hunter'!"

windy
04-15-2012, 12:58 PM
oh, by the way, did anybody find a set of instructions fer that "zero error target model"? i got a partial set i'd like to try,but no paperwork.

windy

Dave Bulla
05-22-2012, 09:42 PM
Hey Windy,

I've got a Target loader in 7mm that has the instructions. They are copies of an original.

My home computer is down so I can't send them via computer. I'm at the library now and I don't think they'd let me plug anything into the computer. If you are not in a hurry, pm me your snail mail and I'll try to get a paper copy out to you.

p.s. Might be interested in that 410 loader you have. I've got a trade in the works swappin' my nearly new 45lc set for a fairly rusty 410 set that I don't even know if it's 2.5 or 3 inch. I'd like to have both sizes but if the one I get is a 3" I want to see if I can make a spacer bushing and load 2.5's on the 3 inch die. If so, I won't need another one provided the rust isn't too bad on the one I'm getting. I just want to be able to keep the kids in ammo during squirrel and rabbit season. Store bought 410 is way too expensive.

BCall
06-08-2012, 10:25 PM
Any of you fellow Lee loader fans have 1975 copyright load data sheets for the shotgun loaders? Specifically for the 2.5" 410, the 2.75" 20 ga, the 2.75" 16 ga, the 2.75" 12 ga, and both lengths of 10 gauge(3.5" and 2-7/8")?

I have some of the older load data sheets for most of the shotgun loaders, but would like to have copies of the newer ones. 1975 is the latest date I have seen on the shotgun loaders. If anyone has ones with the 1975 copyright that they could scan and send to me, I would very much appreciate it!

And Windy, if for some reason you still need a copy of the target loader instructions, I have a scanned copy of them I can e-mail to you. Thanks all! Billy

Old Ironsights
06-08-2012, 10:38 PM
I'll look at my dates. I have 410 16 & 12...

_Hawkeye_
10-19-2012, 08:24 PM
I have one of these for 45 colt, it works fine, and seems pretty fast to me. I can load about 1 cartridge per minute. Fast enough for me

ROGER4314
11-25-2012, 10:23 PM
I have Lee Loaders that I used in the late 1960's. They are 38/357 and .45acp. Both are in excellent condition and in the original boxes. That's surprising as they've been moved countless times!

Keeping the boxes from Speer bullets that I used helped me keep round counts and I remember having boxes for thousands of bullets. They worked great for me because I was going to school and didn't have two nickels to rub together. I lived in a 1959 $900 trailer, paid $17.50 lot rent and watched a tiny TV while loading. Tap, tap, tap! Life was simpler then.

Flash

jabo52521
11-26-2012, 07:49 AM
I have Lee Loaders that I used in the late 1960's. They are 38/357 and .45acp. Both are in excellent condition and in the original boxes. That's surprising as they've been moved countless times!

Keeping the boxes from Speer bullets that I used helped me keep round counts and I remember having boxes for thousands of bullets. They worked great for me because I was going to school and didn't have two nickels to rub together. I lived in a 1959 $900 trailer, paid $17.50 lot rent and watched a tiny TV while loading. Tap, tap, tap! Life was simpler then.

Flash
Yeah... it was. Miss it every now and then.

nanuk
11-26-2012, 01:10 PM
beer was cheaper then too!

Bluetickhound
01-01-2013, 09:37 PM
My .308 Win Lee loader got me into handloading. I'm brand new and still learning the basic mechanics but i feel like i have maximum control right now with this setup. I got a single stage press for Christmas and have .30 Carbine and 9mm carbide die sets coming this week. Can't wait to see how well I like the SS press. I'm sure eventually I'll step up to the "big time" with a progressive but I have too much to learn before I get to that point...

kweidner
01-01-2013, 09:57 PM
My .308 Win Lee loader got me into handloading. I'm brand new and still learning the basic mechanics but i feel like i have maximum control right now with this setup. I got a single stage press for Christmas and have .30 Carbine and 9mm carbide die sets coming this week. Can't wait to see how well I like the SS press. I'm sure eventually I'll step up to the "big time" with a progressive but I have too much to learn before I get to that point...

I use SS for any other than straightwall. Heck if the dillon is set up for .357 and i need 100 .44 i still might use SS. Sometimes i load with my loaders in living room hangin out with family.

Bluetickhound
01-02-2013, 10:10 PM
Since I'm not looking to store up more than 1000 rounds for each weapon I'll be loading for I may just stick with the SS...

saintdel
01-30-2013, 01:56 AM
Boy, lots of love for the LL. My first was a .38spl set in 1972. Still have it along with loaders for every caliber I load plus some I don't. I learned the basics of reloading on that first set. I think everyone should start with one of these to really understand on a physical level exactly what is going on when a cartridge is reloaded. Running cases through a set of dies in a press doesn't give you that up close and personal perspective like a Lee Loader will.

rfd
02-10-2013, 08:12 PM
back in the early 60's i used a lee loader to make super accurate .222rem rounds for my rem varmint rifle. i did use a lyman-ohaus scale instead of the dipper. :mrgreen:

sffar
02-12-2013, 05:13 PM
Just came home with what I thought was a Lee Loader in .357. In the box, but missing the flaring tool, decapping rod, scoop and primer pocket cleaner. Was doing a little cleaning, then I took a closer look at the box and it says "Mequon," not Lee. Kind of surprised, as I'd not been familiar with the Lee corporate history. Anyway what's there looks good, and there's a show coming up in a couple of weeks so it'll give me a a few parts to keep an eye open for. Got it for $5, which seemed almost worth it for the priming tool. I own several of these reloaders, though I haven't loaded a single round with one–I'm just always intrigued by them!
Sam

429421Cowboy
02-12-2013, 07:55 PM
I have one for 12 guage and one for 9mm, i certainly didn't start loading with them, but they are a fun and handy little gadget! Especially now that i am moving to a new school into an apartment, so i'll be away from my press for awhile, at least i can feel like i am doing something loading for my CM9 and shotgun, better than no reloading at all! I still prefer a hand priming tool and scale for backup, but dang it is such a handy little setup, truely all you need besides a hammer to get workable rounds!

Dave Bulla
03-07-2013, 09:27 PM
Hey Windy,

I know it's been a LOOOONG time since I offered to try to get you some instructions for the Target Loader and I apologize for not doing it sooner but I just the other day got my scanner reoladed on the computer so I could use it again. Ever since I had to have the hard drive replaced, the program for it has been gone and I just found the disc to reload it the other day.

Anyway, I started a post that has pic's of the instruction sheets for the Target Loader, the Standard Loader and the Shotgun Loader. I checked and found that I also have the instructions for the Unitized Loader but I have not yet uploaded pic's of that one. The Unitized and the Improved kit instructions should be identical I believe except the written part for the Unitized kit mentions that it full length sizes. Once I get that one uploaded, it should pretty much have folks covered who need instructions for any of the kits.

Here's the link

http://castboolits.gunloads.com/showthread.php?189173-Lee-Loader-instructions

Combat Diver
03-07-2013, 10:58 PM
I've got one of those "Mequon" in 38-40. If anyone is interested I'm giving away a Lee Handloader down in the PIF in .338 WM.


http://castboolits.gunloads.com/showthread.php?189192-PIF-for-Lee-Handloader-in-338-WM


CD

eljefeoz
05-06-2013, 11:11 AM
Just got me one in .308
Now, if any one can help with the instruction sheet ... not the 'how to use' but the load data part.
TIA

725
05-06-2013, 01:23 PM
eljefeoz,
Use any load data reference you would use when using you your press. Weigh your loads while working up the test rounds and see which dipper matches your needs.

eljefeoz
08-18-2013, 08:36 AM
Got me another in 7x57 to use with 145 and 168 RCBS CB
So,I flare the case neck and seat the CB over the primed case, with a charge of powder in it, keep the whole set on the depriming base,slide the body die on top, then tap it in place to seat CB.Any advice on this?
TIA

725
08-18-2013, 10:05 AM
Just follow the instructions. They are complete. If it seems too easy, it is. Really not hard at all. Are you using a published load data reference? If the mouth of the case is still too enlarged to function in the action, use the Lee Loader to start a crimp. Be gentile here. It is easy to use too much force and deform the cartridge.

mdi
08-18-2013, 11:45 AM
FWIW. I was reloading some 30-30 ammo with 147 gr. FMHBT (M2 pulls) with a Herter's die set. When I went to seat the bullets, they went in way too easy. Measured the expander and found it is about .307", too big. Didn't want to reduce the expander 'cause I've used it for cast bullets and it works OK. So I went back to my good old Lee Loader and finished reloading the test ammo (Loader sized the neck to roughly .303"-.304" ID, perfect for my use.). Yep, that old "primitive" loading system (aka; "whack-a-mole") came to the rescue.

eljefeoz
08-19-2013, 10:06 AM
Thanks 725
I plan to use published data for a bullet weight and regulate a load /case /dipper /powder
I'm comfortable using CB in a regular press, but the post mouth flare and CB seating with the LL had me wondering how.I will do a few and revert
Cheers

jmort
08-19-2013, 10:29 AM
Why not get the Lee Precision Custom Flaring Tool for the Lee Loaders
http://leeprecision.com/custom-flaring-tool-for-lee-loader.html

725
08-19-2013, 07:27 PM
eljefeoz,
I have a grand 'ol time with the Lee Loader. Have loaded some extremely accurate stuff with it. It's good to get back to the basics and use such a simple and ingenious tool. Hope you have fun and good success with it.
725

eljefeoz
09-18-2013, 03:24 AM
Hi 725
thats great advice and I dood my first ever 145 gr RCBS
follow instructions, and everthing is good as gold
now all i have to do is get good results out of them.
Cheers

eljefeoz
09-18-2013, 03:42 AM
Why not get the Lee Precision Custom Flaring Tool for the Lee Loaders
http://leeprecision.com/custom-flaring-tool-for-lee-loader.html

Yup, I have a flaring tool my gunsmith made me.Sits in a universal 7/8 x 14 die. Interchanges for my 404 too and works flawlessly
Thanks for the suggestion

Mike 56
10-25-2013, 01:19 PM
My 54R Lee loader in fact i have two they size the necks .310. So you can only load .312 jacketed and cast bullets. It is a great tool for cast bullets but not very good for most jacketed bullets. I understand that 54R can be loaded with many different diameter bullets. I think it would great if Lee made .306 and .308 sizers as well as the .310 sizer for the 54R Lee Loader. I would buy the two extra two sizers.

I use the 1/4 punch in a cheap Harbor Fright punch set to flair 30-32 cal cases. It puts a nice tapered flair on my cases instead a belled flair. http://www.harborfreight.com/8-piece-punch-set-93424.html

eljefeoz
11-11-2013, 08:00 AM
Got a LEE ? MEQUON in .222 and another for the .45 ACP. Let's see how they do with the 'coated' CB

HeavyMetal
11-11-2013, 10:59 PM
as with most of you I started with a Lee Loader in 30 carbine, moved quickly to faster technique's but caught the bug ro the target laoder last year, currently have one for my 308 savage 99 and a 222 remington 340 savage

Looking for a target loader in 22-250, 22 hornet and 45-70

eljefeoz
11-12-2013, 02:49 AM
Heavy metal- is your 222 LL a Mequon with flare tool, FLS and RED primer seating device?

Dave Bulla
11-17-2013, 08:23 PM
eljefeoz,

Just an FYI, you mention FLS which I assume is "full length size". The ONLY lee or Mequon kit that full length sizes is the "Unitized" kit. The unitized kit and the "Improved" kit look identical but only the unitized kit full length sizes.

eljefeoz
11-19-2013, 09:22 AM
Thanks Dave,
I just rechecked my hoard -its a unitized.
I've just done a couple of dummy runs with a 7x57 and 145 RCBS SIL.
Cheers

windy
11-20-2013, 01:02 AM
i'm like ranch dog and several others; have a lee loader for every centerfire caliber i shoot--except my 22 savage hi-power, my 9x57, and my 8x56ms, which i can load with the 8x57 set. my only problem now is my 38-55; it takes a boolit enough bigger than the lee will accept that i wind up swaging my boolits down too skinny for my bore, just by driving them through the channel of the boolit seater. gotta use my rcbs set for the .380 and .381. oh, well! still love the lee. i even found one fer my 8x50r lebel carbine!
mind yer topknots!
windy

Dave Bulla
11-20-2013, 03:33 AM
Hey windy, I've run into that issue myself with cast lead not fitting through the throat of the die. Eventually figured out the not so obvious... Just pick the die body up off the case, sit the boolit down in the case mouth then sit the die down over the whole stack and seat normally. This puts the boolit on the case mouth without it having to pass through the die throat. Simple!

dudel
11-22-2013, 07:19 AM
My 54R Lee loader in fact i have two they size the necks .310. So you can only load .312 jacketed and cast bullets. It is a great tool for cast bullets but not very good for most jacketed bullets. I understand that 54R can be loaded with many different diameter bullets. I think it would great if Lee made .306 and .308 sizers as well as the .310 sizer for the 54R Lee Loader. I would buy the two extra two sizers.[/url]

Buckshot will make you a Lee type sizer in any size you want. He does great work, and I recommend him highly. I had checked Lee for custom sizers; but they are so slammed, they are not taking any new orders. I lucked out and found Buckshot on this forum, and he made the sizer I needed, for a very fair price, and had it to me in a week. Craftsmanship is amazing.

eljefeoz
11-24-2013, 01:24 AM
With all the hammering and brass 'work up ' happening with a Lee Loader, how often do you Lee Loader aficionados anneal your brass?
I just realised that a.45 ACP LL is FLS, and takes a fair bit of oomph to do so.
Hence this question.
TIA

jcwit
11-24-2013, 10:01 AM
Never. Has not been an issue with any of their calibers that I use one for. Not even the 30 cal. carbine which is a hard one as far as sizing goes.

Larry Gibson
11-24-2013, 10:23 AM
With all the hammering and brass 'work up ' happening with a Lee Loader, how often do you Lee Loader aficionados anneal your brass?
I just realised that a.45 ACP LL is FLS, and takes a fair bit of oomph to do so.
Hence this question.
TIA

They will size a lot easier with case sizing lube. You can easily make your own or get pure lanolin and use it straight. You can mix the pure liquid lanolin at 12 parts alcohol to 1 lanolin and use in a small spray bottle. Or the Lee case sizing stuff works fine also. Any case that FL sizes in the Lee Loader should be lubed, especially the 30 Carbine.

Larry Gibson

jcwit
11-24-2013, 11:39 AM
Just took sizing lube as a givin when sizing straight walled cases with the Lee Loader.

Especially when sizing 30 carbine.

eljefeoz
11-25-2013, 09:43 AM
Thanks JCW & Larry
I did do some 7x57 with the Lee Loader, which were quite a breeze, using a 1kg lead 'muffin' as a base, and a piece of wood as the hammer
Yup,I do use lanolin (get it by the kilo , and I use it for all my lubing,sizing work) with the .45 ACP LL, and after whacking myself on the L hand /thumb etc-cant put the cuss words here-realised that the itty bitty .45 takes a lot more whacking.I must get me a plastic mallet and try that...
So generally, NO annealing is required when reloading with the Lee Loader?
I usually anneal my cases after 5 firings
Cheers

Fieldmaster
12-23-2014, 08:11 PM
Hello All
don't know how often anyone checks here but I too have been a long time Lee Product user been trying to locate a reasonable price 300gr. FP 45 cal (.457) bullet mold the other guys want so much for theirs it's beyond what i want to pay so i wrote Lee and asked them if they plan on making a 300gr. bullet mold they said no not enough people asking them for one but reading all the forums here some for silhouette shooting some bench rest shooters and other competitions site deer hunting sites and they are all asking for a 300gr. FP 45cal (.457) mold so what is your say on this matter and could you all write Lee and ask them for a 300gr. FP 45cal (.457) bullet mold

Zaneiel
09-10-2015, 02:00 PM
How much is too much? Just curiouse. If you want to see lee make this mold you may be wanting to spend 19.99 ish? If there is enough interest in this mold i could do a run of them sometime. Id have to think about cost but usually a 2 cavity mold is about 50 bucks.

footpetaljones
09-10-2015, 09:47 PM
Fieldmaster,

Lee makes a 340 gr .457 mold that is $21 on Midway. That isn't close enough for you?

aephilli822
02-04-2016, 03:42 PM
I bought one in 308 Win when I was twelve years old, killed my first legal Javelina,deer and elk with ammo I loaded with it, I retired it when I was fifteen, I still have it.

I still have my original home made hammer built just for the Lee loader. It was made by a old Hermit I met one day out it the hill's and became good friends with, ED Whetstone was his name I called him Flintstone, he was from Wisconsin had marital problems told the judge and his ex- wife good luck with collecting any alimony from him and disappeared into S. AZ and became a prospector, hard rock miner, and mechanic second to none, he made my hammer out of solid brass both handle and head, knurled the handle and inscribed the head.

A few years later I came real close to killing him one night about two in the morning. He had a Zinc mine on the SW end of the Hauchuca MTNS, he would work there all week then on Friday I would come up and relieve him while he went to town for the weekend, I had a old hound named Dooley he would go with me, so this one Friday I met Flintstone on the road and he said to be careful at night because a bear had been coming around the shack , so on Saturday night about two in the morning old Dooley woke me up and he was baying and growling under the shanty and about that time I heard crunch crunch out side in the leaves, this shanty had four steps up to the front door with a small landing at the top, I kept a old gold pan there to feed Dooley in, the door didn't have a lock so I propped a chair up against it at night, anyway the crunch crunch led right up to and on the step's and then I heard the gold pan go tumbling off the landing well by this time I was out of bed and had the 44 in my hand leveled at the door, hammer back and about that time the door came flying in off the hinges and then a gun went off but it wasn't mine and in the muzzle flash I made out the silhouette of Flintstone, he had kicked the door in and fired a shot from his 45 into the ceiling at the same time, he was drunk had a couple of bar queens in his truck that was stuck down the canyon and had hiked up and decided to scare me in the process. I was sixteen at the time.

MEMORIES

GOOD LUCK

and that right there explains why I read thru old threads that I'm not even interested in.....:D

Malamute
10-31-2016, 04:13 PM
^^ We need a like button.

Electric Apple Juice
05-20-2017, 01:14 AM
Did LEE ever make a Lee Loader for the .410 bore shells? For that matter, does ANYBODY? I was looking at an MEC press, but to set it up for .410, you're looking at $109+ per die set. That sounds a bit much, considering what 3-die sets for pistol go for. TC in Colorado.

EDG
05-20-2017, 01:35 AM
This page has a listing of most of the stuff Lee has made including the 410 loaders. The .410 tools usually go for $80 to $110 each.

http://leeloaderdata.com/


Did LEE ever make a Lee Loader for the .410 bore shells? For that matter, does ANYBODY? I was looking at an MEC press, but to set it up for .410, you're looking at $109+ per die set. That sounds a bit much, considering what 3-die sets for pistol go for. TC in Colorado.

eljefeoz
05-20-2017, 01:38 AM
I had a Lee Loader for .410, sold it last year after I converted to Brass shells formed from .303.
Ideal with 11.5 gr Blue Dot and 1/2 oz no 7 1/2.

Old Ironsights
05-20-2017, 11:23 AM
This page has a listing of most of the stuff Lee has made including the 410 loaders. The .410 tools usually go for $80 to $110 each.

http://leeloaderdata.com/

Yep. They are pretty rare to find intact at a decent price. Lots of them went to Europe where the .410 is actually more commonly used. I keep mine busy feeding my .410 levergun.

woodbutcher
05-20-2017, 05:09 PM
:D Lee loader in .38 spl.Worked very well this was back in the mid 60`s..Only problem was Mom and Dad griped about the wack wack with the hammer.Sooooooo, to keep the peace I just got a C clamp to run the cases into the sizing die and that stopped the fussing.
Good luck.Have fun.Be safe.
Leo

EDG
05-20-2017, 11:04 PM
The high cost of factory .410 ammo causes the demand for the Lee loader in .410. I had one but never had a .410.
The truth is paying $100 is not too bright when you can buy a used MEC for less money and the MEC is a much better loader.


Yep. They are pretty rare to find intact at a decent price. Lots of them went to Europe where the .410 is actually more commonly used. I keep mine busy feeding my .410 levergun.

Knightflyer
03-19-2018, 07:03 PM
Just chiming in here, since I use the Lee Loader. Someday I have dreams of a fancy press, etc. But it was a budget fight to get my Lee (+powder, boolits, primers...) so not happening anytime soon.
My usually thrifty, pinch-penny wife "couldn't see the point" of reloading. "Are you really saving that much??" Yes, 20 cents vs 84 a round dear! "But your time and energy and..." and having an hour of peace and quiet while I whack some cartridges together??

Nope, I still love Life. I left that last part off. :D
-KF (Dave)

38 Special
04-12-2019, 10:15 PM
Old interesting thread. I started in 1973 with a 30-30 loader and a box of 150 gr Speer bullets, during the 70's I used Lee Loaders as my only reloading tool for 44 Magnum and 38 Special.

I still have my first 30-30 Lee Loader with a badly faded price tag of 9.95. They all made good ammunition just too time. The first accessories I bought were a Pacific scale a set of the Lee powder dippers and a RCBS powder trickler and then I could charge my handloads the way I wanted . I still have those too, the 80s saw me buying my first press a Lyman O Mag then later a Dillion Square deal one of 4 dillions I have today buying reloading equipment from time to time until today just getting started with boolit casting. My advice to new reloaders is always start with the basics be safe first make some good ammunition enjoy the experience and then move up to a progressive if that's what you want for quantity reloading but don't start with one. Reloaders always find a need for a Lee Loader or a single stage press no matter what other faster reloading equipment they own experimenting with loads in small batches for one example. One big advantage to Lee Loaders is you can transport them to work up loads with little equipment . I will say when I bought that single stage Lyman O Mag press #55 powder measure and a set of Lyman carbide 38/357 Lyman dies in 1982 all from the Gander Mountain catalog I thought it was wonderful for the number of cartridges per hour I could reload with good results too. I still have all three today , when I got my first Dillon Square deal in .38 special in 1987 all I could say was wow!

Gunny Bill
06-17-2019, 08:42 PM
You need to be careful, as they only resize at the neck in most cases. If you use brass from several different guys the reloads might not work in all of them.
I'verun into this with 38 Spec, .357, .35 Rem, .30-06 and 8 MM.
All done uising brass from several different guns and it can be a real pain!!