The written material in this web site is from my own experience, or the experience of others who I trust would not lead me astray. It is not intended to be a manual of any sort. To use this as one is by your own choice, and I will not be held responsible for any injuries or damage that may result. Shotshell reloading is something I enjoy very much, almost as much as shooting clays. I am no expert on this subject. This is just something I would like to share. To find info on shotshell reloading is fairly easy, there are a number of publications about it. I find it very difficult to find much on the web about it solely, it is usually tucked away with info on metallic reloading, and most of the time not very in-depth, and I am trying to cover as much as I can. Bear with me as it takes time to do this. Please remember, THIS IS NOT A MANUAL!!!
Everyone knows how to do something. Whether it's playing a guitar, gardening, carpentry, knitting, painting with watercolors, caring for an iguana...we've all acquired certain skills in our lives, and it's only right that we should want to share the results of our hobby and also share what we've learned about how to do it well.
On this site, I'm going to talk about Shotshell Reloading, mainly 12 ga. target, eventually I plan on adding hunting, buckshot & slug loading. I'll explain why I reload, as well as some background on how I got involved in it. I'll also include some instructions on how to perform my hobby, as well as any tips or tricks I've acquired through the years. And, of course, I'll include pictures of the equipment I use, results of my hobby or of me enjoying myself doing it.
Keep in mind that this web site is NOT designed to be a reloading guide. DO NOT attempt to reload until you have received competent instructions or have read and understand a reloading manual.
You will see this DISCLAIMER quite often
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History and bits
Reloading has been around basically since the beginning of the country. Back then men would pour black powder, stuff wadding, and pour shot down the barrel of their musket. They were not often hungry . This is proof that reloading is effective, no matter how rudimentary. When self-contained shotshells became available, handloading did not stop. In the east store-bought ammo was readily available but in the west this was not the case. Early hunters and shooters in the west, because of the lack of readily available store-bought ammo, by necessity, were reloaders Despite this, shotshell reloading did not really come into its own until the 1950s. At that time the design of shotshell reloading tools reached a point where the process became a fairly easy thing to do. The new self-contained tool designs eliminated the need for multiple and often crude devices that the reloaders were used to. There are several million reloaders today; of which a small percentage is metallic presses fitted with adapters to accept shotshell dies. These are generally used to produce small amounts of hunting loads. A larger percent are single stage that can produce enough ammo for a limited amount of shotgun sports and hunting, and save some money to boot. Serious shooters, that shoot a lot of shotgun sports, are apt o use a progressive reloader as they can produce several hundred rounds an hour, and in the process save some serious jack! Regardless, all shotshell reloaders share some common interest, besides saving money. The most important is probably assembly of safe ammo that does what it is suppose to do. Sometimes reloaders ignore the assumed goal of safe and sane reloading often due to ignorance. The reloader who wants to reload safe, high performance ammo can learn by reading and following the directions and recipes of reputable reloading manuals. It is my opinion that a shotshell reloading manual is far more detailed than one combined with metallic data. The main topic is metallic data with limited shotshell data thrown in.
Live to Shoot Another Day ------------------------------------------------------------ Don't be stupid! Careless handling of explosives can kill you. Do three things:
Wear safety glasses; Check your powder charges with a reliable scale that can disclose variations in powder weights; and Use the exact loads recommended by powder manufacturers such as Hodgdon, Winchester, Alliant, Accurate and IMR.