At the Range: Is Ammunition Reloading Right for You?

Wondering if ammunition reloading is right for you? I know with everything the way it is, and ammunition being scarce, a lot of you may be thinking about whether or not reloading is for you. So I wanted to break down a few things. Some of the pros to it are once you have your supplies and equipment, you can load your own ammo whenever you need it, you can recycle your brass, or you can be very fine tuned with your loads. Additionally, some rifles shoot different loads better than others including different weight bullets. A prime example is my dad who actually loads up a 7mm STW. To my knowledge, the only way that you can get this particular weighted bullet in a hollow point, is to hand reload. It’s one of the better performing ones that he shot when he was doing long range shooting.

Some of the cons that I would really consider is that right now I feel like with ammunition being scarce, everybody’s first thought is “I’ll just make my own.” Well, an issue with that is components. Because there is such a high demand and a low supply, the manufacturers are purchasing up all of these components, so things like primers are really hard to get right now. Because of this, it really wouldn’t be a good enough reason, in my opinion, to get into this.

Another con is going to be your startup cost—you’re looking at $500 to $1,000 bare minimum which is including single stage equipment where you can work all afternoon and load up 100 rounds or so if you know what you’re doing. Some other cons are, this isn’t just as easy as two plus two, you know, these, these manuals are full of different loads, you’re essentially playing with explosive and flammable materials, so you have to pay attention to these numbers—it’s very important.

For me personally, the reason that I do not reload my own ammo, is that I’m not a precision shooter. I don’t have the need to completely fine tune it. But if you’re competitive shooter, this may be the way you need to go. Another con is time. That is the biggest factor in this is it takes a lot of time. You’ve got to research because you don’t know what load is going to work in each gun—every gun performs differently. Let’s say you load up a batch of 20 rounds of ammo, you have to go shoot it, and it may not perform very well. Then you have to go back, start over, try a different load, a different grain bullet, and all of these types of things, until you finally find what that gun really likes. So, for me personally, that’s another con that deters me from getting into this.

I would say if your motivation for getting into reloading is strictly because ammunition is hard to find right now or you think it’d be cheaper, I would definitely say this probably isn’t going to be for you unless you’re just shooting a lot. When reloading your own ammo would be perfect for you is if you’re a precision shooter and you want to get the absolute most out of your high end firearm and you want your bullet holes touching each other, then this is what you need to be looking at. So those are just a few of the things if you’re on the edge of considering getting into this. I highly recommend you take a long hard look and make sure that this is appropriate for you because it’s a big investment and it’s going to take a lot of your time. But, if you do it and you do it right it can be the most fruitful thing that you do for your shooting career.

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Related Video: At the Range: Gun Safes

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