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Thread: What would I need to get set up reloading shotgun ammunition?

  1. #1
    Senior Member HuntinDawg's Avatar
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    Default What would I need to get set up reloading shotgun ammunition?

    I know there are some reloaders on here, so here goes:

    My situation is that I'm dying to get my 10 year old daughter started shooing a shotgun. She is tiny for her age but I was able to work out a solution for deer hunting but have not come up with a solution for wingshooting. I really want her to kill some birds over our dog (now 9) before he is no longer able to hunt. He is slowing down. She adores him and I know it would be an awesome memory for her if she could shoot some doves or ducks for him to retrieve.

    She isn't strong enough to support the forend of an autoloader so it is going to have to be a single shot just to minimize the weight out front. I've gone round and round in circles thinking .410 (yes, I know), 28 gauge, 20 gauge. She has never fired a shotgun. In .410 you can get factory loads down around 1/2 ounce. Obviously I wouldn't use that to shoot ducks (it is lead anyway) but to get her used to the gun and shoot some clay pigeons it would be good. 28 gauge I can only find down to 3/4 ounce in lead (5/8 in steel or lead slug) and 20 gauge only down to 3/4 oz in lead.

    I'm thinking if I could reload her some 28 gauge or 20 gauge loads in 1/2 oz to 5/8 ounce to practice with that would be great.

    Now that you know what I'm thinking, you know this will not need to be a high volume reloading operation. What do I HAVE to have and how cheap can I get into this?

    Thanks!

    EDIT: Updated in post 23.
    Last edited by HuntinDawg; 06-18-2014 at 10:09 AM.
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  2. #2
    Senior Member krazybronco2's Avatar
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    im getting into reloading as well and for lead it isnt that bad to get into but the problem i have found is finding powder anywhere. but a lee load all 2 can be had for around $50-$60 bucks cheap reloader. look at ballistic products they have alot of stuff and you can get a couple of data manuals for now and look and see what kinda load you want to build find those supplies. also most of the powder suppliers have a small reloader data page on their website. and i will tell you it is alot more complicated than you think! different hulls primers powder wads everything has to be perfect or you could blow up a gun.

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    Senior Member GulfCoast's Avatar
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    All you "need" is a single stage press with a de-priming tool, scale, some hulls, wads, primers, a couple bags of #8 shot, and powder. And a reloading guide with recipies. In 28 guage you can actually load cheaper than buying factory loads, once you aquire a supply of hulls. A multi-stage press where you can crank out a shell-per-pull makes it much nicer, but it takes a LONG time to pay for itself.
    Last edited by GulfCoast; 06-02-2014 at 03:08 PM.
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    Member Bob Z's Avatar
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    As a long time reloader of shotshells and metallic cartridges, I feel the best thing you can do before starting this very fun and relaxing journey is meeting someone who is an experienced reloader. Most are more than willing to teach you the ins and outs. Safety and attention to detail are paramount. Enjoy your new hobby.

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    Senior Member BonMallari's Avatar
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    I will make this offer for the young lady: If you get a reloader in a 20 gauge, I will send you a large bag of once fired Winchester AA hulls from my skeet shooting days (approx 250)...let me know and send me an address and I will get them out of storage and get the young lady started
    All my Exes live in Texas

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    Senior Member twall's Avatar
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    Find a gun that fits her and that she can handle. Light guns kick harder. With practice she will build strength and confidence. Think about dove season as a goal, lots of shooting oppportunities. Most girls tend to be better shots quicker than boys since they take instruction better.

    Once you find the gun then get the basics to reload. I started with Lee Load All. It served me fine for a number of years. When I got into regularly shooting sporting clays I got a progressive loader.

    Look around, there are lots of loads for sub-gauge guns. You can find a light load that will kill birds when the gun is pointed the right direction.

    Your daughter will make memories just being able to go out with you and your dog.

    Have fun,

    Tom
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    Senior Member HuntinDawg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Z View Post
    I feel the best thing you can do before starting this very fun and relaxing journey is meeting someone who is an experienced reloader.
    I have a good friend who used to shoot skeet competitively and reloaded a great deal but his business fell on hard times and he sold his reloading equipment. I know he will be willing to give me some guidance but right now he is in the middle of moving from one house to another and working 2 jobs while he tried to land the one he wants so he is pretty short on time right now.

    Quote Originally Posted by BonMallari View Post
    I will make this offer for the young lady: If you get a reloader in a 20 gauge, I will send you a large bag of once fired Winchester AA hulls from my skeet shooting days (approx 250)...let me know and send me an address and I will get them out of storage and get the young lady started
    That is a very generous and gracious offer. I still have not settled on a particular gun or gauge at this point, but I will let you know if I go with a 20 gauge and begin reloading. Thank you very much.

    Quote Originally Posted by twall View Post
    Look around, there are lots of loads for sub-gauge guns. You can find a light load that will kill birds when the gun is pointed the right direction.
    I cannot find anything in 28 gauge lighter than 3/4 oz except slugs and steel shot. I cannot find anything in 20 gauge lighter than 7/8 except slugs and steel shot. If I could find 1/2 oz 28 gauge I would buy her a 28 gauge.

    Of course you are 100% correct about gun fit. Whatever I buy her will likely need the LOP shortened, a better recoil pad installed and very likely some way to raise the comb. With the .243 she shoots I had to cut down the stock, add a recoil pad and use a neoprene sleeve with foam shims to raise the comb so she could see through the scope without lifting her head off the stock and that was with the lowest scope rings I could find.
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    "When you go to a test or a trial, your dog should be underwhelmed." ~ Evan Graham

    "It is unreasonable to expect a dog to be more precise than you are." ~ Rex Carr

    "You own what you condone." ~ Mike Lardy

  8. #8
    Senior Member BonMallari's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HuntinDawg View Post



    I cannot find anything in 28 gauge lighter than 3/4 oz except slugs and steel shot. I cannot find anything in 20 gauge lighter than 7/8 except slugs and steel shot. If I could find 1/2 oz 28 gauge I would buy her a 28 gauge.
    here is the info you are looking for in the Hodgdon reloading site...20 gauge in 3/4 oz loads, its what we used to shoot for practice, to save on the wear and tear

    http://www.hodgdonreloading.com/data/shotgun

    and here is what I would get for the young lady which is what many instructors recommend..

    Buy a 20 gauge O/U and put subgauge tubes in it...its like having two guns for the price of one...Thats what we did for my nephew but he grew so fast that he can use my 12 gauge 1100 this year and his dad and I battle over who shoots the 20 gauge, so the case of 28 gauge shotshells that I bought hasnt even been opened....love shooting pigeons with a smaller gauge because its easier on the cheek/shoulder and it doesnt cut up the birds on the first shot
    All my Exes live in Texas

    Quote Originally Posted by lanse brown View Post
    A few things that I learned still ring true. "Lanse when you get a gift, say thank you and walk away. When you get a screwing walk away. You are going to get a lot more screwings than gifts"

  9. #9
    Senior Member TexGold's Avatar
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    I would also look at the low end MEC loaders. I think they are a bit more sturdy than the Lees. You gotta make a decision on gauge. The problem with a 28 is that everything about them is expensive and hard to find.

    First thing is a gun. Hard to find a reasonably priced 28. I would probably get her a single shot 20 gauge gun like we use for poppers. Since she is small you will probably have to really cut the stock down and then she is going to grow, so why spend much? There isn't going to be that much difference in recoil between light 20 or 28.

    You then have to decide on ammo components. Most of the trap guys seem to think Winchester AA hulls are best. Once you have chosen the hull you are going to use, you will need appropriate wads and primers. You will also need the right crimper for your loader and hull.

    Now, you need to look at some reloading manuals or powder web sites to find the lightest load you can. That will dictate the size of charge bar or bushing you need for your loader.

    If you don't have a good local source, I would call Midway USA. They have everything you need, plus I bet they will have someone good to help you get started. Also, forget what I said about MEC. They are about $175 where the Lee is $51.99. Not worth the difference for what you are doing.

    Good luck and hope this is helpful. It's really not complicated once you are set up. My daughters used to reload with me when they were 5 and 6.
    "When a man is proud of his dog and shows it, I like him. When his dog is proud of him and shows it, I deeply respect him. Gene Hill

  10. #10
    Senior Member DarrinGreene's Avatar
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    Get the loading information and then look for powder before you buy anything else.

    We've shot clays and reloaded on and off for years. Recently went back to the sport and would LOVE to reload and save a few $$ but powder has been impossible the last few months. If oyu can't get powder you might as well put the whole idea on hold until you can.

    Buddy of mine just bought his son a Browning Silver Hunter in 20 ga youth model. Nice little gun, fits his son and in semi it shoots as soft as possible. If $$ isn't an issue the semi auto action may be a solution to the recoil problem.
    Darrin Greene

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