RepackboxLee PrecisionMidSouth Shooters SupplyInline Fabrication
WidenersTitan ReloadingADvertise hereRotoMetals2

Page 1 of 4 1234 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 73

Thread: bonanza co-ax

  1. #1
    Boolit Buddy
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    sw pa
    Posts
    252

    bonanza co-ax

    what is better about a bonanza co-ax than a convential press, such as a rockchucker. trying to justify buying one!

  2. #2
    Boolit Mold
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Posts
    24
    Changing dies consists of just sliding them in once they are set. They are nice for depriming, the primers fall in to a list jar, instead of all over. Also is faster for depriming, due to the shell holder. You just flick the old one out and set the new one in. They do seem to have better leverage, makes reloading operations smoother. That being said, I wouldn't sell your Rockchucker. The Rockcucker can do thing the co-ax can't. Like resizing bullets with a lee sizing unit. I sold my co-ax because I wanted to downsize my reloading setup, also a Dillion square B, and a Redding T turret press. I bought a 750 Dillion and kept a single stage for the grunt work. Out of the three I sold, I do miss the co-ax. But I can easily get by without it.

  3. #3
    Boolit Grand Master

    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Northwest Ohio
    Posts
    11,367
    The co axis set up is self aligning. Te dies slide in and float north south the shell holder clamps the case and floats east west. the die lock ring squares the die. Its a good solid accurate press with very good leverage ( a lot use it with the short handle). Priming is a little slower to set up and to do. but as mentioned depriming is quicker and contained completely. The new press have a hardened wear plate under the shell holder. I also removed the jar from the deprime and e clip installed a length of clear tubing and in to a 8 lb powder keg for more capacity. The set of shell holder jaws will do every thing but 22 hornet and 45-70 size case heads, for those you need a second set of jaws.

    Collet pullers push thru sizers dont work well on the co ax do to the top handles swing over.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master

    kungfustyle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    964
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TqcYI0G2hqM
    gives you a good deal of information. Rock Chucker was one of the best presses!!!!

  5. #5
    Boolit Master jmorris's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    4,628
    The bonanza one has a smaller “wishbone” handle that won’t allow use of some micrometer dies and other taller accessories that will for the current forster version.

    The “why” is it’s unique vs other presses that require a bushings, threading dies in and out or shell holders for everything.



    That said, the dies you use make more difference that what press they are in. I can use good dies in a progressive and have less runout than other less than ideal dies in any single stage, including my rockchucker and co-ax.

  6. #6
    Boolit Master jmorris's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    4,628
    If you have some handyman skills you can make a simple fixture to hold a dial indicator that will allow you to precisely adjust almost any die on a number of presses, for less than one “micrometer” die though and they will work even with the old co-ax presses.


  7. #7
    Boolit Master Drew P's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    NW USA
    Posts
    994
    I haven’t run one but I did have another “over the top” handle type presses and I found it much more straining for my body than a typical “O” press. Hold your arm up and out for 10 min and then hold it close to your belly for the same amount of time and decide which is easier. That, combine with its other quirks has kept me from buying one. I also don’t see the die arrangement as an advantage, as you must use set screw lock rings etc. the hornady die bushings are more convenient and solid imo. At 1/3 the cost my Lee classic O press with hornady bushings is tough to beat.
    For me the co-ax seems like a solution in search of a problem.

  8. #8
    Boolit Grand Master






    Lloyd Smale's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    munising Michigan
    Posts
    15,491
    ya that never made sense to me. If I want consistency in anything I want rigid. If I bought an rock chucker or something like it and the die wobbled around I sure wouldn't brag is self aligning. Id say its sloppy. I owned a co-ax back in the 70s when you had to have one to be cool. Never did a thing for me and collected dust for the most part. Lost it in my big fire and its one piece of loading equipment I never even considered replacing. Picked another one up about 3 years ago at a gunshop that was selling someone who had died stuff. I payed 75 bucks for it and went right home and put it on here for a 150 and it was gone the next day.
    Quote Originally Posted by country gent View Post
    The co axis set up is self aligning. Te dies slide in and float north south the shell holder clamps the case and floats east west. the die lock ring squares the die. Its a good solid accurate press with very good leverage ( a lot use it with the short handle). Priming is a little slower to set up and to do. but as mentioned depriming is quicker and contained completely. The new press have a hardened wear plate under the shell holder. I also removed the jar from the deprime and e clip installed a length of clear tubing and in to a 8 lb powder keg for more capacity. The set of shell holder jaws will do every thing but 22 hornet and 45-70 size case heads, for those you need a second set of jaws.

    Collet pullers push thru sizers dont work well on the co ax do to the top handles swing over.
    Soldier of God, sixgun junky, Retired electrical lineman. My office was a 100 feet in the air, closer to God the better

  9. #9
    Boolit Master


    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    4,071
    I have had one for over 45 years and love it. It does all my rifle loads.

    I have a RC too for the heavy work.

    It is a pain to prime on and dangerous IMHO as your hand is over the case as the primer seats. For small runs I use a hand primer and an RCBS bench primer for longer runs.

    Love not having to adjust dies once I have a load dialed in...but that is no advantage if you load different bullets and different COL's. That could be addressed with additional seating dies if you have two or three loads. For example, I have one load for the .308 that is sub MOA in two rifles so the seating die is fixed. I will likely have two loads for the .223's, and they get more use, so I will buy another die for it.

    I like the shell holder system as others have mentioned...it works.

    I made up a larger bottle to catch primers. The RC is a pain with primers falling all over the place and it was primarily used to size and deprime military brass. I purchased a universal decapping die and do that operation on the co-ax.

    If I had to get rid of one, I would resize the few thousand military cases I have and the RC would go. I do very little "heavy" work.
    Don Verna

    NRA Endowment Member

  10. #10
    Boolit Master jmorris's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    4,628
    Hold your arm up and out for 10 min and then hold it close to your belly for the same amount of time and decide which is easier....the hornady die bushings are more convenient and solid imo.
    It’s 6 one, half dozen another. That above and down throw is why co-ax users say they are so easy to use because of the drastically increased throw. The more motion~the more leverage. If your holing you’re arm up and out for 10 min, it’s not on a handle and your not loading.

    I thought the LNL bushings were pretty cool until I had one self quick release on me, of course it was the one with the powder measure in it. The Lee Breech lock system with interrupted threads and locking button (first in the video in #5 above) is a better design.

  11. #11
    Boolit Buddy
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    sw pa
    Posts
    252
    i will say this about the "wobble" in the die holder of the co-ax (i've never used one). i think that it is a very good design. because; what makes you think that the threads of the die are in exact alignment with the threads and ram of your press. i don't tighten my dies in the press. i tighten them ,then crack them loose so that there is a little "wobble", then place a strip of duct tape across the lock ring onto the press; this keeps the die from backing off, but giving it some movement to center itself over the brass in both sizing and seating.

  12. #12
    Boolit Grand Master

    mdi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    So. Orygun
    Posts
    6,223
    Short answer; for typical reloading a Co-Ax is better. I've had one for only 4 years loading mebbr 3,000 rounds. I have also used my Lee hardness tester on mine and sized some bullets with my Lee sizing dies (I made a longer"ram/stem" that fits the shell holder) . I don't do any swaging. I have heard a lot about the "long handle, long swing" but who says you have to grab the handle all the way out on the end? Out of curiosity I made a short handle, 8". It "worked" so-so but I just put the original back. For applications that don't need much leverage/force I just grab the handle by the yoke. No big deal.

    I don't prime on my Co-Ax for every cartridge I reload as some are a bit harder to adjust the shell holder for. But it works with the same principle as a ram prime, very positive.
    It is a pain to prime on and dangerous IMHO as your hand is over the case as the primer seats.
    This may because this 45 year old press has a different priming design (?), but my Co-Ax doesn't need my hands anywhere near the mouth of a case being primed.

    Since 1971 I have owned several single stage presses, from a Lee Challenger to a Redding Boss and my Forster Co-Ax is by far the best, easiest to use, most precise press yet...
    My Anchor is holding fast!

  13. #13
    Boolit Master


    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    4,071
    Quote Originally Posted by mdi View Post
    I don't prime on my Co-Ax for every cartridge I reload as some are a bit harder to adjust the shell holder for. But it works with the same principle as a ram prime, very positive. This may because this 45 year old press has a different priming design (?), but my Co-Ax doesn't need my hands anywhere near the mouth of a case being primed.
    This:

    https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q...AE&FORM=VDQVAP
    Don Verna

    NRA Endowment Member

  14. #14
    Boolit Grand Master

    mdi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    So. Orygun
    Posts
    6,223
    Quote Originally Posted by dverna View Post
    The video mostly deals with the shell holder jaws. Not the priming shell holder jaws. I have switched sell holder jaws hundreds of times and I bought the LS jaws to fit some cartridges I reload (one hint; I replaced the screws that holds the jaw assembly with phillips head screws. I use a 12" screwdriver which is much easier to remove/tighten screws than using an allen wrench). The priming shell holder jaws are the ones I mentioned as some cartridges have a pretty small/thin rim (380 and 45 Colt can be difficult to adjust). I don't consider this a "problem", it just takes me a longer to get this adjustment right with these two calibers.
    My Anchor is holding fast!

  15. #15
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    South Western NC
    Posts
    2,078
    Quote Originally Posted by porthos View Post
    what is better about a bonanza co-ax than a convential press, such as a rockchucker. trying to justify buying one!
    Your ammo will never know the difference. So, which is "better" is a personal opinion based on the features.

    If fast die exchange matters and if saving maybe a minute or two per loading session makes a difference to you, go Co-Ax.

    If you find locating and exchanging snap-in shell holders to be clumsy or slow (( then go with the Co-Ax.

    If you hate dealing with spilled spent primer grit on your ram, go Co-Ax.

    If you hate sweeping your shop floor for scattered spent primer caps, go Co-Ax.

    If you find dealing with the "straight out" lever of the Co-Ax impossibly awkward, go RCBS.

    If you .... well, never mind, just go Co-Ax.

  16. #16
    Boolit Grand Master






    Lloyd Smale's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    munising Michigan
    Posts
    15,491
    I guess I have to ask if its so superior why aren't they being sold in numbers. Gun guys tend to want the best or at least the best they can afford. Theres no way a co ax loads ammo any more accurate then a rockchucker or vise versa. Bench rest shooters today don't use either of them. If you want to get the same results and pay twice as much then well never mind just go co ax. If you want other loaders to think your cool because of what press is on your bench then just go co ax. Want the strongest longest lasting main stream press for the money. Get yourself a rock chucker or even a lyman orange crusher. Id include Hornady in with them but like another poster I don't care for there quick release dies that tend to quick release all on there own so mine about collects dust or is used for things like base swagging 40 brass or pulling bullets and my rock chucker gets the real work. If you want quick change and sloppy enough to self center you can buy two lnl presses for the price of a co ax.
    Soldier of God, sixgun junky, Retired electrical lineman. My office was a 100 feet in the air, closer to God the better

  17. #17
    Boolit Grand Master






    Lloyd Smale's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    munising Michigan
    Posts
    15,491
    I had to just choke! I looked up what a new coax cost and its over 500 bucks. Sorry but I can buy a like new 550 Dillon for that kind of money and they can be also be used as a good stout single stage when you want to. Sorry but NO single stage press is worth over 500 bucks to me. YOU just go get a co ax. I don't need to look cool. I spend a lot of money on loading gear. I don't scrimp when I do it. But I buy what works and don't spend money on something that doesn't save time or make the end product better or isn't made to last any longer.
    Soldier of God, sixgun junky, Retired electrical lineman. My office was a 100 feet in the air, closer to God the better

  18. #18
    Boolit Master jmorris's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    4,628
    Quote Originally Posted by Lloyd Smale View Post
    I guess I have to ask if its so superior why aren't they being sold in numbers.
    I suspect they are, look around and try to find one in stock somewhere.

    I’ll save you some time Midway, Grafs, Midsouth, Natchez, Brownell’s are all out of stock. You can get one from Forster, if you wanted to pay MSRP.

    This is the only place I know of that has any in stock right now.

    https://www.scheels.com/p/forster-co...725300268.html

    FWIW I don’t have one to be cool but then again I don’t think my rock chucker, Lyman, Dillon’s or Lee’s make me any cooler either, just different tools for the same job.

    They were $250 when I bought mine, maybe the fact that most resellers are out of stock on them in the low $300 price range and they are in stock at MSRP, we can see where the breaking point in price is for potential buyers.
    Last edited by jmorris; 01-22-2020 at 11:01 AM.

  19. #19
    Boolit Buddy
    AZ Pete's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    347
    Gee Lloyd, I didn't realize my Bonanza Co-ax made me one of the "cool kids"....good to know. I bought mine for $60, used, about 20 years ago, and love it. It was a great upgrade from my 60 year old Pacific. I have also had very good service from Forster dies. The Co-ax serves me better than my 550b for anything that is not loaded in bulk numbers. YMMV
    NRA Endowment Life Member

  20. #20
    Boolit Grand Master

    mdi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    So. Orygun
    Posts
    6,223
    From what I understand, Forster, which manufacturers many products other than the Co-Ax, produces them regularly and with all the other products they have to assign personnel and time for, they make as many as they can. They sell every one they make, there are none sitting in warehouses or on dealer's shelves.
    My Anchor is holding fast!

Page 1 of 4 1234 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check