Sharing a press?

Rating - 100%
28   0   0
Joined
Aug 15, 2007
Messages
12,187
Likes
1,263
Would it make any sense for two people to go in on one press?

Looking at the Dillon 550B, it looks like it could be mounted to a piece of plywood as a platform and that platform could be c-clamped to a workbench while in use. This would facilitate moving it when necessary.

RL_550_cat_shot.jpg


If this idea is completely preposterous, feel free to tell me.
 

drgrant

Moderator
NES Member
Rating - 100%
61   0   0
Joined
Mar 21, 2006
Messages
86,021
Likes
79,924
Some people do it for pistol rounds, not so much sharing the press, but mounting it with c-clamps to portable tables, etc.

With rifle rounds it might suck because of the considerable increase in force needed for resizing.

-Mike
 
Rating - 100%
28   0   0
Joined
Aug 15, 2007
Messages
12,187
Likes
1,263
Some people do it for pistol rounds, not so much sharing the press, but mounting it with c-clamps to portable tables, etc.

With rifle rounds it might suck because of the considerable increase in force needed for resizing.

-Mike

Hmm, if more force is needed, I think I could engineer a quick release system of some sort. Even if I had to drill one hole in the bench for where a c-clamp can't reach, it wouldn't be a big deal.

And yes, I'll probably have more questions for you.[smile]
 
Rating - 100%
53   0   0
Joined
Mar 30, 2009
Messages
4,195
Likes
253
Location
South of you
The usual questions arise when I think about such things:

Q. Who's going to pay for repairs when one of you break something?
Q. Who's gonna be hogging the machine the most?
Q. Will you BOTH treat the machine with the same loving care?
Q. Why not either justify buying one yourself, or buy something that you could afford on your own?

I've had too many times when I let someone borrow something, and it gets broken. I don't lend things out any more.
 

Woodstock

NES Member
Rating - 100%
40   0   0
Joined
Aug 4, 2009
Messages
3,836
Likes
1,591
I have friends who shoot IDPA and practice a lot. One of them owns the 550B plus the other hardware. The other guy comes to his house with components every couple of weeks and they work together to load a big bunch of ammo. This works for them, as they shoot the same caliber and load. The problem with sharing a press is the setup time for different loads, powders etc., not to mention the large primer/small primer changeover, which is a PITA. And if I break something, which I have done, it's my fault, and I live with the wait while Dillon ships me the new one - always N/C. If someone else busts it and I need to load ammo, I might get grumpy.
If you're not reloading now, I would buy a good single-stage press plus the scale and powder measure, etc. Lyman, RCBS, Hornady and the like all have package deals. When it makes sense to get into heavy volume, go for the progressive. Or find a friend who owns one and work with him/her.
 
Rating - 100%
20   0   0
Joined
Mar 9, 2009
Messages
5,144
Likes
642
Location
West of the 495
I know it would negate the money savings by splitting the cost of a press, but you could rent a shared work space/studio in a warehouse. that way you wouldn't have to move it everytime the other person wants to use it.
 

jar

Rating - 100%
8   0   0
Joined
Apr 13, 2007
Messages
6,370
Likes
701
Location
Needham, MA
If you're not reloading now, I would buy a good single-stage press plus the scale and powder measure, etc. Lyman, RCBS, Hornady and the like all have package deals. When it makes sense to get into heavy volume, go for the progressive. Or find a friend who owns one and work with him/her.

I absolutely disagree with this advice. I followed it, loaded 50 rounds on a single stage, said screw this noise and bought a progressive. If you shoot the volume that would call for a progressive, buy it right away.

Some people make sharing a press work. I'm a procrastinator and often load ammo the night before or even morning of a match. I couldn't do it unless it lived at my house and the other guy scheduled the time to use it.
 
Rating - 100%
3   0   0
Joined
Apr 8, 2007
Messages
453
Likes
7
Location
Metrowest,MA
Moving the press from one location to another would seem to stink.

Currently, I'm getting into reloading and my cousin and I are sharing the same press installed at one location. We will be splitting the cost of the items I already purchased and will re-load either together or whenever each of us needs ammo. I don't see why this isn't going to work. If one person breaks it, they pay to fix it. If it's a wearable item then both will pay to get it fixed. Seems simple and not complex. I don't think a contract is needed. If you can't trust people you are family or friends with, then you might just need some better friends/family.
 

drgrant

Moderator
NES Member
Rating - 100%
61   0   0
Joined
Mar 21, 2006
Messages
86,021
Likes
79,924
If you're not reloading now, I would buy a good single-stage press plus the scale and powder measure, etc. Lyman, RCBS, Hornady and the like all have package deals. When it makes sense to get into heavy volume, go for the progressive. Or find a friend who owns one and work with him/her.

I agree with Jar on this. If you're making more than tiny, tiny batches of ammo, a single stage only setup is a dumb idea.

I loaded pistol ammo on a single stage for a year. It sucked, I probably loaded like 2000+ rounds that way! [shocked] it's just that at the time I was desperate to get into reloading and that's the only reason I did it that way, I was a couple hundred or so short of buying a real press. In hindsight I should have just waited another month or so until I had extra money.

-Mike
 
Rating - 100%
28   0   0
Joined
Aug 15, 2007
Messages
12,187
Likes
1,263
I absolutely disagree with this advice. I followed it, loaded 50 rounds on a single stage, said screw this noise and bought a progressive. If you shoot the volume that would call for a progressive, buy it right away.

Some people make sharing a press work. I'm a procrastinator and often load ammo the night before or even morning of a match. I couldn't do it unless it lived at my house and the other guy scheduled the time to use it.

I agree. There are times to cheap out on a tool but this doesn't seem to be one of them.
 

chinalfr

NES Member
Rating - 100%
89   0   0
Joined
Aug 26, 2009
Messages
7,188
Likes
1,705
Location
Cave
I know it would negate the money savings by splitting the cost of a press, but you could rent a shared work space/studio in a warehouse. that way you wouldn't have to move it everytime the other person wants to use it.

Seriously??? My garage have plenty of space. If needed, I can get a shed dedicated for reloading as long as someone want to setup a press inside. [smile][smile]
 

Fixxah

NES Member
Rating - 100%
42   0   0
Joined
May 1, 2008
Messages
36,741
Likes
19,948
Location
Here.
I for one wouldn't do it. Too much needs to be packaged to go along woth the press and stuff always gets lost in transit.

Save for a real progressive (ie; 650 or LnL) and let the fun begin. Just charge it and pay later.
 
F

Finalygotabeltfed

I did it with a LEE .50 bmg press but wouldn't do it with anything else, my hours are too erratic and
I want the press on the bench when I decide I want to load.

With the .50 press, I do far fewer rounds and can load every piece of brass in a fairly short time leaving the press available for the other owner.

I'd advise you to buy your own press for pistol/rifle rounds.
 

Jasper

NES Member
Rating - 100%
29   0   0
Joined
Oct 8, 2006
Messages
1,911
Likes
166
Location
Saugus, MA
personally, i wouldnt. something gets lost, blame game starts, just not worth the headache.

on a sidenote...oddly enough, i've offered up my presses (550 and 650) to a couple of friends of mine if they wanted to use them to bulk load a bunch of ammo. its been months, and none have taken me up on the offer. this thread just reminded me of it.
 

Titan

Banned
Rating - 100%
4   0   0
Joined
Feb 7, 2008
Messages
5,997
Likes
358
Location
South Eastern MA
I'm just getting into reloading, but the way I think about this, it wouldn't work unless....

The press was located in one place, and shared there (avoids the shlepping of stuff back and forth)
The people involved were very close friends (long time relationship, and agreements by handshake...example..brothers, brothers in law, long time hunting or competition buddies)
The people involved tended to be seasonal loaders who could offset seasons (one in summer....one in winter, for example).
If sharing two presses, a single and a progressive, take turns by type of press.

Otherwise, I'd anticipate headaches and frustration.
 

dustoff22

NES Member
Rating - 100%
101   0   0
Joined
Jan 30, 2009
Messages
3,064
Likes
1,426
Location
Cape Cod
Doesn't make sense to share a progressive press in my opinion. Too much need for 'tweeking" no matter whether it's a Dillon, Hornady, or RCBS. Wait until you've saved enough and have your own, that way when something goes to hell in a handbasket you only have yourself to blame.
 
Rating - 100%
9   0   0
Joined
Jun 25, 2010
Messages
10,441
Likes
4,990
Location
WNW of MHT
I split the cost of a Dillon 550 with two friends about 15 years ago. We've since moved into different timezones, but the reloader is still going strong; the current "keeper of the press" just had kids, so I'm taking custody this summer.

It's certainly possible to share a progressive reloader with friends, as long as you can work out who has custody when. We mounted the Dillon in a large portable closet, so all the parts and accessories would always move with it. As far as tweaks and settings go, one of the great things about the Dillon is that each person can have their own quick-change toolhead(s) with powder measure, and this is where nearly all adjustments happen.
 

M1911

Moderator
NES Member
Rating - 100%
27   0   0
Joined
Apr 1, 2005
Messages
42,181
Likes
12,470
Location
Near Framingham
I absolutely disagree with this advice. I followed it, loaded 50 rounds on a single stage, said screw this noise and bought a progressive. If you shoot the volume that would call for a progressive, buy it right away.
I agree completely. Even during the week I can usually find time after dinner to sneak down to the press. In less than 30 minutes I can load 100 rounds on my 550B. With a few sessions during the week, I'm set for the weekend's match and/or practice.

There is just no way I could find the time required for a single stage press.

With the right caliber, it would've paid for itself by now.
Yup. My press paid for itself the first year, and that was ~10 years ago.
 
Rating - 0%
0   0   0
Joined
Oct 26, 2008
Messages
234
Likes
5
Sharing a press works IF you both use the same loads or else you spend upwards of 1/2 hour restting the powder measure, more if the seating/crimp die is changed.

Get your own, it's better in the long run.
 
Top Bottom