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RL-17, Bullets, and a Reloading bench.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/21/2009 at 16:40
helo18 View Drop Down
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I finally got my hands on some RL-17.  Took four weeks checking four stores here in the Bozeman area.  Got the last 3 pounds of it.  And the last box of CCI 200 Large Rifle primers.  Now I just have to pick up a box of 130 gr Innerbonds and I will be ready for my 270 rounds.  Bud, I will load it as hot as I can get it without pressure signs, and let you know how much powder I get in there.

I am planning on loading 130 gr Innerbonds, 140 gr BTSP.  Any other bullets you guys think I should test?

Reloading bench.  I finally have a plan.  I have to make it free standing for now.  For the top I am using a solid core birch slab 1-3/4" thick.  It is 6'8" long and 2'4" wide.  4x4 Doug fir for the legs, and 2x4 Sel Struc for the bracing.  I also got a peice of shelving to build a chelf under the bench right now.  Later I will add shelves on the top as well.  I am planning on the top of the bench being 42" so I can stand at it and work, or sit on a stool.  That is the way I always did it at my parents, and I like it that way.  Any ideas or suggestions?

Will post pics as put it together and put the finish on the top.  Have most of the materials gathered and will be going up to my parents next weekend to put it together with my dad.  He loves that stuff, and it is great memories building with him.  He is also the one that taught me to reload, so we will probably do some loading together up there as well.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/21/2009 at 16:50
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The bench sounds great. Should be solid. As far as bullets to test, I don't know what you are using them for, but Sierra Gamekings have been excellent for me so far. They have been the one bullet, that no matter what I do they shoot great. I'm loading some Hornady SST's for my long range round, but don't have them nailed yet. I'll bet the innerbond is a great round. If I could shoot those for SST price, that's what I'd be loading. Of course my caliber is a bit different, and no two rifles like the same thing. Let us know how you turn out.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/21/2009 at 17:00
helo18 View Drop Down
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Used to shoot the SSTs.  Nice for long range, but in my opinion are far too explosive on game.  On elk it would hardly penetrate.  On deer it would blow huge holes in it.  Shot a deer at 10 yards.  Bullet exploded and fragmented.  Took a while to find all the fragments and get them out of the meat.  Then at 275 yards on a doe, it hit the rib going back and then hit the hip socket going out.  Lost a whole hindquarter.  Good ballistics, but I think there are better bullets around.  The innerbond is a great bullet, and I even like the 140 gr BTSP interlocks.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/21/2009 at 20:23
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Andrew, I completely forgot about the reloading bench built, please post pics when she's done.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/21/2009 at 20:29
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Originally posted by lucytuma lucytuma wrote:

Andrew, I completely forgot about the reloading bench built, please post pics when she's done.


No problem.  Do you think it will be stable enough free standing?  I know it is going to weigh a bit, but if I am going to build it, I might as well build it to last.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/21/2009 at 21:08
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http://www.opticstalk.com/forum_posts.asp?TID=11321&PN=1
 Jeff H. built this one last spring.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/22/2009 at 18:34
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"I also got a peice of shelving to build a chelf under the bench right now.  Later I will add shelves on the top as well.  I am planning on the top of the bench being 42" so I can stand at it and work, or sit on a stool.  That is the way I always did it at my parents, and I like it that way.  Any ideas or suggestions?"
 
Yes.  Keep it up!
 
Actually, your bench is about perfect in it's dimensions now.  A little short per haps but you won't notice that for awhile!
 
You will need a LOT of storage.   Easy to add a "book case" shelf unit, NO wider than 7 1/2" or things will get lost on the back side. as tall as you can make it and full length of the bench.   Let it set on top of the bench and anchor it to a wall or use a "leg" to the lower bench structure for stability.  Make at least one of the shelves about nose high to hold your powder scale where it can be easily read.  You will likely need to make the scale's shelf wider to make it esy to reach.
 
If you will operate the press with your right hand, place the press maye 10" from the right end.  Mount your powder measure stand just behind and  to the left of the press, about midpoint of the bench top, with the scale shelf just to the left of the measure.  That way you can prep cases, dispense and weigh/trickle charges and seat bullets just by turning and without having to more around.
 
Leave a little knee room under the top for when you sit on your "bar" stool, and put something, shelf or bar, about 12" off the floor for a foot rest. 
 
If you can, enclose the lower bench.  Anything will do for the ends and back, even cheap 1/8" paneling.  Make hinged doors for the front, use 1/2 or 3/4 plywood, just to keep the lower storage stuff cleaner. 
 
Add a couple of AC power strips to the ends of the bench for a radio, tumbler, battery charges, etc.  Put a paper towel holder on one end. 
 
Install a lot of light over the front edge of the bench, at least a "shop light" with twin 48" florescent tubes.  Twice that won't be too much.
 
Put a swiveling "mechanics" vise, 3" or 3 1/2" is plenty (Lowe's/H'Depot), on the left corner.  Mount your case trimmer, concentricity gage, etc. on wood blocks and you can clamp them in the vise for use.  The vise WILL be handy from time to time for lots of other things too.
Enjoy!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/22/2009 at 19:07
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Thanks for all the great ideas, Crosswire.  Not sure how much I can add right now, but will be adding on later.  I will keep them in mind.  I think I will add the power strips and paper towel holder soon though.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/22/2009 at 19:45
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 Great ideas Crosswire. You've obviously been there and done that and you've thought things out well.
 Andrew, I would  be sure to build the lower shelf solidly into the bench initially, even if you leave other features off for now.  It will help make the bench sturdy AND you can weigh it down with heavy stuff if you can't or don't wish to anchor it to the wall or floor.
 When you build it, think 'bolts and lag screws' -not nails. Use 1/4"or 5/16"  carriage bolts to bolt your frame components together to avoid protruding bolt heads. Driill holes 1/32" over bolt size. Flat washers under the nuts. 
 Paint the top white or light gray to make it easy to find small parts or tools. Put a small raised lip around the front and sides to keep stuff from rolling off.
 If you will use it as a workbench for other gun work-make it a little longer; at least leave enough room for a mounted or mountable gun vise like the Caldwell or Tipton things.
 If you put it in a basement or garage, be sure you can control humidity year round.
 As Crosswire said, light the snot out of the whole area. I've heard guys recommend industrial duty shielded, explosion-proof light fixtures to prevent hot filaments from falling into your 8-pound keg of Bullseye or H4831 if you bust a lamp.  Can't really argue with that.
 AC in the room is nice in the summer, a fan at the least. And a radio or CD player. A computer is nice to have close by for all the data and reference stuff, too.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/22/2009 at 21:56
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Hopefully we can get Cheaptrick to post a picture of his reloading bench.   It is considered the standard for reloading benches here on the optics talk. Big Smile
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/23/2009 at 06:26
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 Paging Mark!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/23/2009 at 08:16
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my bench wasnt built, it was welded together, 8x10 steel table, made with 1/2" steel, lots of room to lay stuff out.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/23/2009 at 16:45
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  I personally  like steel myself.
 Until I have to :
 A.  Pay for it.
 and
 B.  Move it!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/24/2009 at 10:44
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I found I had to put some extra 2x4 bracing underneath an existing bench to keep the bench top from flexing. Presses have a lot of torque. I wish my powder measure was a little closer to the press but I have the scale on a leveled table top mounted over a concrete shaft of some sort (have no idea what it was for) and that is absolutely vibration-free. Seems like I've had to keep adding shelving around the room too! But it sure keeps things organized.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/24/2009 at 11:03
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Originally posted by pyro6999 pyro6999 wrote:

my bench wasnt built, it was welded together, 8x10 steel table, made with 1/2" steel, lots of room to lay stuff out.
 
Quit showing off Hunter Wink
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/24/2009 at 11:06
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That great, I thought with you applying to the BP that the Bench would be back on hold.  I guessed wrong!  I just received my Chrony yesterday in the mail.  As soon as I get a break in the weather I'm heading for the range.  I'll let you know the speeds on the RE17 ASAP.
 
Glad you found some RE17, 3 lbs,...might last a month or so! Roll Eyes
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/24/2009 at 21:48
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I am applying for the BP.  But the testing and interviews don't start till the 24th of April.  I can get a lot of building and reloading done in that time.  Keeps us posted on the speeds.  I am very interested to know how fast they are moving.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/24/2009 at 21:50
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Originally posted by jonoMT jonoMT wrote:

I found I had to put some extra 2x4 bracing underneath an existing bench to keep the bench top from flexing. Presses have a lot of torque. I wish my powder measure was a little closer to the press but I have the scale on a leveled table top mounted over a concrete shaft of some sort (have no idea what it was for) and that is absolutely vibration-free. Seems like I've had to keep adding shelving around the room too! But it sure keeps things organized.


How thick is the top of your bench?


Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/24/2009 at 21:50
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Hey guy's in case you haven't heard SPEED kills!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/25/2009 at 06:23
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I hope to get to the range this evening after work.  I'll Post the Chrony results along with the observations in the Range report Forum.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/25/2009 at 08:04
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Originally posted by budperm budperm wrote:

Originally posted by pyro6999 pyro6999 wrote:

my bench wasnt built, it was welded together, 8x10 steel table, made with 1/2" steel, lots of room to lay stuff out.
 
Quit showing off Hunter Wink


it cost us about 10 min of time to "pay" for it.
and we move it with our skid steer.
sorry i had to show off some moreBucky
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/25/2009 at 11:02
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Originally posted by helo18 helo18 wrote:

Originally posted by jonoMT jonoMT wrote:

I found I had to put some extra 2x4 bracing underneath an existing bench to keep the bench top from flexing. 


How thick is the top of your bench?




Existing crap 3/8" plywood that I was too lazy/cheap to replace. I'm sure 3/4" would probably be adequate by itself, but depending on how well (or not) the bench was constructed it might still flex.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/25/2009 at 11:05
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here is a link to an article terry weiland wrote a while back on what he used for his new bench.
http://www.rifleshootermag.com/ammunition/benchs_022607/index.html


Edited by pyro6999 - February/25/2009 at 11:05
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/25/2009 at 22:48
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Thanks for the link bro!  Some day I when I am in my own house, I want to put together a bench like that.  I should do it now while I am at a lumber yard, and can get good prices, but I don't have anywhere to put something that big.

Edited by helo18 - February/25/2009 at 22:48
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/26/2009 at 06:24
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Quit showing off Hunter Wink
[/QUOTE]

it cost us about 10 min of time to "pay" for it.
and we move it with our skid steer.
sorry i had to show off some moreBucky
[/QUOTE]
 
Dude...you live for it!...Don't we all?  Cool
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