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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I was raised by a pack of reloaders as their "victim". "Here, go shoot that, and take these 6 here and bring me the target". I would hear various commands like that throughout my formative years.
Now, I am grown, and raised my own 30 year old son.
So I read all the fun ya'll have reloading and.... sometimes, late at night when the wife and dogs are asleep I dream about casting and loading my own. I have all the inherited equipment from years past. I have been exposed to enough to be a real danger to myself and bystanders....
But if I ever DID start doing it, I think the only way I could make it work is stick to .38/.357 along with 12 ga. (Which I do actually sometimes reload now).
What are your thoughts on a more versatile cartridge? Is .38/.357 your most reloaded round? I know there are better options and some wildcats I have never even heard of that would really blow my socks off.....
 

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Handloading is, to most that practice, as much or more enjoyable than shooting. Hard to believe, right? It's true for many.
It is however, a suck time to dive in, with the scarcity and cost of components. You have the equipment. You have the desire and background. Pick the cartridge you shoot the most of and concentrate on components for that. I don't load it but understand that 38/357 is easy to load for. Rifle, 223, 308, 6.5cm and most other common bottleneck cartridges are straightforward and are usually versatile with powder availability. For the wildcats, research the components and dies available and decide. Did I mention it's a suck time for components? Good Luck maddmatter. Save your brass!
 

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Place to start???? can't get any better than 38/357 .
Inherently accurate it is almost impossible to find a bad load for them.
Brass is super available and almost free. Most any pistol powder can be used.
I would not rush into casting just play with the myriad of commercially cast bullets out there till you start to formulate what your ideal round is.
Just start low powered and safe till the mystery is gone and you will be flying in no time.
 

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I load 9mm, 38/357, 45 AP, 44 mag/ 223/5.56, 308 Win. Of late most of it is 5.56 and 44 mag followed by 38/357. I built a big pile of 9mm a few years ago. The magnums I pay extra attention to as they're quite fun.
Will be working on accuracy loads for the 5.56 after I get the reloading room set up in our new house.
I don't push the envelope on none of them. Although I need to settle on a bear defense load for my motorcycle camping rides out west. It's as much fun developing a load to do a particular jobs as it is to shoot in my opinion.
For plain ol simplicity and safety the 38 Special in a good piece is a great way to learn. jmho
 

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I was raised by a pack of reloaders as their "victim". "Here, go shoot that, and take these 6 here and bring me the target". I would hear various commands like that throughout my formative years.
Now, I am grown, and raised my own 30 year old son.
So I read all the fun ya'll have reloading and.... sometimes, late at night when the wife and dogs are asleep I dream about casting and loading my own. I have all the inherited equipment from years past. I have been exposed to enough to be a real danger to myself and bystanders....
But if I ever DID start doing it, I think the only way I could make it work is stick to .38/.357 along with 12 ga. (Which I do actually sometimes reload now).
What are your thoughts on a more versatile cartridge? Is .38/.357 your most reloaded round? I know there are better options and some wildcats I have never even heard of that would really blow my socks off.....
The 38/357 is versatile, but not like the 32 caliber. 327 fm, 32 swl, 32 h&r mag, 32 shorts and in a pinch 32 acp ...
 

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What are your thoughts on a more versatile cartridge? Is .38/.357 your most reloaded round? I know there are better options and some wildcats I have never even heard of that would really blow my socks off.....
I most enjoy reloading for 38 and 357. I do everything single stage because I’m in no hurry and never shoot more than about 1000 rounds a year.

All straight-wall pistol cartridges are the most fun for me, but I do reload for a few different bottleneck rifle rounds. It’s just a joyful little hobby; except for the lack of primers these days it is never frustrating. You have to enjoy fiddly hobbies, which I do. My other ones involve gardening, fishing, working on cars, or building plastic model aircraft and armored fighting vehicles. Fiddly!

Reloading is the most fiddly of them all. What I like about the calibers I mentioned is that there’s a wide variety of loads to employ and they are fairly easy for a new hobbyist..
 

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357 and 327.

With two guns and two die sets you can shoot 6 or 7 different cartridges.
I keep it to 38 SPL, 357 MAG, 327 FED, 32 H&R and 32 SWL.

I reload and shoot 12 different handgun rounds but far and away the 38 and 32.
 

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DO IT!!!!

I have reloaded since the mid 80's. Pretty much reload everything I shoot. I have never dove into the casting.

Reloading really adds to the "sport" and the added satisfaction is immeasurable. You will love it even if you only load .38 and .357. I seldom shoot full house .357's. Reloading allows custom tailoring of rounds. I'll load up most .357's with a low to midrange load. Comfortable to shoot and don't beat up the gun punching paper.

Since you have much of the equipment your start up would not be as extensive as if you had nothing. The ONLY drawback I can think of is TIME. It does take up a bit of your schedule. Somehow I always squeeze it in.

Bepe
 

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Handloading is, to most that practice, as much or more enjoyable than shooting.
Agreed. I find handloading/reloading is a hobby unto itself, I enjoy the whole process and find it relaxing.

I have noticed over the years that reloaders generally fall into 3 categories:
1) people who love doing it, they enjoy creating something and enjoy the quest for the perfect load for a particular rifle or pistol,
2) people that just want to hurry up, pump out a bunch of rounds, get it over with so they can go shoot,
3) people who end up hating it for a variety of reasons... they are not detail oriented, get frustrated with the mechanics, find it boring, etc.
It's definately not for everyone.

.38spl. was one of my most loaded rounds at one time, it's easy to load, fun to shoot and as with any revolver, it's easy to keep up with your brass. .45acp and 9mm were probably tied for 2nd around the same time.

These days, .30Carbine has taken over as most frequently reloaded, feeding my M1 Carbine and a Ruger .30Carbine Blackhawk.

Most frequently loaded caliber depends on what I happen to be having the most fun shooting at the time.
I have the capability to load for every gun we own except .22 & shotgun.

I still have dies I have never used yet, i.e. .380, .30Luger, 30.06, .45Colt & .357mag.
*Yes, I know my .38spl dies are also for .357, but I bought a second set of dies so I could keep a dedicated set for .38spl. :)

I have not had any interest in is casting my own bullets or reloading for my 12ga or .410.
 

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I fall into the I enjoy it category. Been doing it for many many years and still have all my fingers. I started out with 357 and now load 357, 45acp, 223. and 308. I load handgun on a lee turret and rifle on a lee single stage. Never had the desire to step up to a progressive. Heck it took me years to get the turret LOL.

You hear a lot of people say 357 is a reloaders round but really most calibers are because you have the freedom to make what you want and can tailor to your specific gun.

OP I think you should start reloading. It can be fun and rewarding and for me it is stress relieving. Just remember the most important rule. START LOW AND WORK UP.
 

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Speaking as a relatively new reloader, I'm not a novice but I have a long way to go before becoming an expert.

I started reloading due to the cost and lack of inventory of a particular caliber, the 45 colt. I've added 32 H&R to my resume and soon .327 when I get enough brass. These two calibers are similar in that there are some choices on the shelf but to make them shine you need to reload. Even at my level of experience/inexperience I can make both calibers much more interesting by loading my own.

I suspect you can do the same with .38/.357, there's just more choices on the shelf so reloading isn't as necessary.
 

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You will start out reloading for one ... 38/357 is probably the best for reloader and shooter .
Then something strange happens ... you buy a new gun and think a set of dies and I can reload for it .
If you already have the equiptment ... you are 3/4 the way there .
I reload and cast bullets for every rifle , revolver and pistol I own and have dies and moulds for some I've never owned but might like too . The future is uncertain ... getting things like ammo is hard ... if you can make your own ...
you just might be ahead in this game of life . I've never experienced a ammo shortage ... but I started casting and reloading in 1967 .
Gary
 

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I reload a lot of calibers and singling one out as most loaded would be difficult.
My son reloads our .357Mag, 9mm, 10mm, .40S&W and .45ACP plus .223 on my two Hornady LNL progressives, usually in batches of 500 at a time but sometimes more.
I reload our .38Spl, .44Spl, .44Mag, .45Colt, .45AutoRim and .41Mag on my RockChucker because I have the time since I am retired. Amount varies with what we have shot but generally I end up loading somewhere between 250-500 per session and usually have at least two sessions of each caliber each month.
We take turns loading Ruger only type loads in .41Mag, .44Mag, .45Colt and .357Mag but usually only a couple hundred rounds at a time. My son also loads all of our rifle and .357Maximum and .375SuperMag revolver cartridges on a separate RockChucker Supreme press.

If I were to guess I would say our most loaded rounds are 9mm, .357Mag and .45ACP but it would vary depending on what we have recently shot.
 

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I started reloading because of bunch of forum enablers :LOL: . In all seriousness, I started reloading because 500 magnum was $2.50/rd. I now reload over 30 cartridges. 45 Colt, 44 mag and 45 ACP are my most common reloads because I am a big bore junkie, but, as I said, I reload a lot. Many I built my stash from the ground up with handloads. 460 S&W, 32 H&R, 327 Fed, 41 mag among others fall into that category. Cartridges like 380 acp are real cost effective because the bullets are cheap, powder charge is small and factory ammo is ridiculously overpriced. Just avoid the urge to load light. A squib will ruin your day pretty damn fast if you happen to fire a second round while there is one lodged in the barrel.
 

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I have noticed over the years that reloaders generally fall into 3 categories:
1) people who love doing it, they enjoy creating something and enjoy the quest for the perfect load for a particular rifle or pistol,
THAT, for every one of my hobbies. Time? I have plenty, because I do not waste time on activities like TV, video gaming, or following sports. If my hands and brain are not into a hobby, and the result is not tangible, I get bored and quit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
THAT, for every one of my hobbies. Time? I have plenty, because I do not waste time on activities like TV, video gaming, or following sports. If my hands and brain are not into a hobby, and the result is not tangible, I get bored and quit.
I don't do much tv either come to think of it. But I seem to do more ruger forum than I had planned!
 

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While I started reloading with 38/.357 in the early '70s, centerfire rifle probably accounted for the majority of rounds that have passed through my press with years of DCM and NRA High Power competition. Other than rimfire I load nearly every round I shoot. These days that has become largely handguns because hauling a rifle and bag of ammo/stuff is a challenge when your walking mostly involves a cane.
Since I load what I shoot it is almost exclusively handgun calibers that begin with a "4", I only hunt bowling pins so little of my loading involves 'magnum' loads but often they go into magnum handguns.

Bruce
 
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