Reloading Manual

Discussion in 'Caliber Talk: Ammunition, Reloading, and Shooting ' started by Fred_G, Dec 30, 2018.

  1. Fred_G

    Fred_G Known Agitator

    Dec 29, 2015
    I have been reloading on a friend's press for a while, about ready to set my Dillon 550 up. I use the loads my friend has worked up when using his press. But, reading on different powder burn rates for different calibers and other such details has clued me into the fact I need more information.

    So, what would you folks consider the top one or two reloading manuals? If it makes any difference, I reload handgun only.
    boatdoc likes this.
  2. El Perdido

    El Perdido Fictional Western Sage

    Oct 3, 2011
    I have Speer, Hornady, and Lyman manuals. Since I use mostly Alliant powders, I also have their manual. Tend to go with the data in the Speer more often than not.
    boatdoc and Fred_G like this.

  3. Dave Jessee

    Dave Jessee Well-Known Member Supporting Addict

    Dec 31, 2014
    If the manufacturer of the bullets you are using publishes a manual that might be a good choice. I have the Lyman manual and it's also a good choice.
    boatdoc, rhjeepdriver and Fred_G like this.
  4. mtodd

    mtodd 1911 lover Supporting Addict

    Oct 8, 2012
    Generally power companies manuals list a variety of manufacturers bullets and bullet companies list a variety of powders....
    boatdoc and Fred_G like this.
  5. walleyemonster

    walleyemonster Well-Known Member

    Jan 11, 2017
    I have Hornady and Lyman manuals. There is much information online to be accessed as well. The powder manufacturers also have info online.
    boatdoc and Fred_G like this.
  6. Mike0251

    Mike0251 Well-Known Member Supporting Addict

    Mar 25, 2016
    Fred when I develop a new load I will consult many manuals and make notes what they state as a min and max load as well as FPS on a sheet of paper using the powder of your choice. Then I will review those listings and come up with a starting point. I do this because load data does vary as published as well as some of the older manuals like VV had higher powder charges and then changed. I recently did this with a 180gr Hornady HAP on top of .40 S&W brass. Then I immediately went outside and chronographed the recipe and was pleased with the outcome. Next up will be accuracy check. Why 180gr HAP? because I use it for 10mm as well. Many manuals are available on line and I try to get them all. I find the research and development every bit as exciting as shooting! And every cartridge info/load is kept in an Excel spreadsheet.

    Last edited: Dec 30, 2018
  7. Karsten

    Karsten Well-Known Member

    Feb 19, 2013
    I have Speer #13 (most likely newer version out today) and Modern Reloading, Second Edition by Richard Lee.

    Back when I start on a friend Lee Pro 1000 we check a couple and allows ended up using load data out a an older book Blue Hard bound....It had Max Load Data I don't think they publish today.

    boatdoc likes this.
  8. BigJimP

    BigJimP Well-Known Member

    Mar 12, 2018
    I recommend you rely on the powder company's manual...and I prefer the Hodgdon online manual...( Hodgdon also distributes Winchester powder ).../ I use Hodgdon powders exclusively in my handguns ( primarily TiteGroup )..but they have other good powders.

    Hard copy reloading manuals are not much use for recipe's anymore ...they're obsolete as soon as they are printed / they are valuable to review specs on cases and finished rounds. However, in a compartmentalized plastic fishing lure box I keep 4 or 5 rds from a variety of mfg's to use to compare overall lengths for various bullet profiles ( from boxes of ammo I fired that ran in my guns, Federal, Win, etc..)... that box becomes my QC cartridges..../ I also buy a case gague for every caliber I load for ( keep them in the QC box too )...

    And rely on your Dillon loader manual for procedures, setup, guide on belling, final crimp, bullet seating depth, etc....

    Pick a bullet you like ( Montana Gold for me )....

    Happy Reloading ...!!
  9. Fred_G

    Fred_G Known Agitator

    Dec 29, 2015
    So, it is really powder, bullet, OAL, and accuracy?

    I do see where a printed manual could easily be outdated. We use mainly Berry's bullets, and they have links to loading data.

    I will have to download the Dillon manual, the one that came with my press is VHS, and I don't even own a TV these days.
    boatdoc likes this.
  10. BigJimP

    BigJimP Well-Known Member

    Mar 12, 2018
    Overall length really depends on bullet varies more than you might think.

    Berry's is a good plated bullet ( they are not jacketed )... but they are very consistent. They have some reloading info on their web site. If I couldn't get Montana Gold, I would buy Berry's..

    Yes, download & print the Dillon will refer to it a lot...setup, cleaning, lubing, caliber changes, etc...its a good resource.
    Mike0251 likes this.
  11. daved20319

    daved20319 Active Member

    Jun 27, 2018
    In hardcopy I have Speer, Nosler, Hornady, and a couple of the small Lyman dedicated booklets, one for popular pistol loads, the other for popular varmint loads, but I only use the latter for .223. Online, I have links to Alliant, VV, Hodgdon (most used), and I'm sure I'm forgetting some others. Powder companies are good about having data on their sites, bullet manufacturers, not so much, in my experience. And even with all that data pretty much at my fingertips, I still have trouble finding load data for specific bullets from the smaller manufacturers. I've had to learn that when in doubt, find a similar bullet, then a VERY CONSERVATIVE charge range, not all LSWC's are the same, and it DOES make a difference :rolleyes:. I'm starting to think that reloaders are like pilots, there's old ones and bold ones, but not too many old, bold ones. Later.

    Dub, boatdoc and BenchMonkey like this.
  12. BenchMonkey

    BenchMonkey Angry Infidel

    Nov 28, 2018
    I'll stick with my paper cuts and dogeared pages.

    Most current rifle/pistol: Lyman 50th.
    I also have Hornady, Nosler, Speer and Lee. I'm a bit of a load manual junkie and like having the hard copy handy. The oldest I have around is I think the Lyman 41st edition from 56? One of the handiest may be the Cast Bullet Handbook.
    Dub and Karsten like this.
  13. ed plantaganet

    ed plantaganet Member

    Feb 10, 2018
    I like the caliber specific ones. I think they're called load books.
    Chris Stoneking likes this.
  14. mikegalway

    mikegalway CEO of DILLIGAF industries Supporting Addict

    Feb 23, 2014
    I've got Hornady and Lyman manuals . Lately Hodgdon's website has been my go -to .
  15. boatdoc

    boatdoc Well-Known Member

    Aug 3, 2015

    I am in for the education
  16. boatdoc

    boatdoc Well-Known Member

    Aug 3, 2015
    you can go to a library to watch it...might cause a fuss though ;)
  17. Spokes

    Spokes Supporting Addict Supporting Addict

    Sep 18, 2011
    I used to read about four or five manuals. Now that I don't do too much reloading I just go to the Internet web site for Hornady.
    DukeSoprano likes this.
  18. conditor

    conditor Well-Known Member

    Jan 24, 2019
  19. Recoil

    Recoil Member

    Jan 31, 2019
    Powder manufacturer data mainly, I've even emailed them and they are very friendly and willing to help
  20. DukeSoprano

    DukeSoprano Supporting Addict Supporting Addict

    Jan 17, 2013

    I’m trying to figure out a load right now

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Dub likes this.

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