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View Full Version : Reloading experts? Want to hire a reloading consultant


CCWFacts
04-14-2009, 8:28 AM
I figure the best place to look for an ammo expert is here...

I have investors who may be interested in starting a reloading company. I understand the general ideas but I have no experience with it.

We're looking for the right person to do some consulting in writing the business plan. If it's a viable plan, then we'll probably want that same person to help us set up shop.

Please let me know (in a PM) a little about your background and a phone number.

wildcard
04-14-2009, 10:09 AM
MrKubota seems to be the resident expert and is/was actually in the business of reloading I believe. I'd hit him up and at the least he may be able to point you in the right direction.

what2be
04-14-2009, 10:11 AM
I figure the best place to look for an ammo expert is here...

I have investors who may be interested in starting a reloading company. I understand the general ideas but I have no experience with it.

We're looking for the right person to do some consulting in writing the business plan. If it's a viable plan, then we'll probably want that same person to help us set up shop.

Please let me know (in a PM) a little about your background and a phone number.

I was just having a conversation with someone at Dillion and we were discussing steel vs carbide dies. The guy at dillion made a comment about not wasting your money on carbide dies unless you are commercially reloading, but at this time, the last business venture anyone should be contemplating is the reloading business.

Yes, reloads are scarce, and the reason for that is RELOADING supplies are scarce. Heck, go try to find 100k in primers. ...good luck. lol, just try finding 1,000 primers..good luck. primers, powder, bullets, brass, all of it is over priced at the moment, and some of it is just plain impossible to find.

CCWFacts
04-14-2009, 12:26 PM
Thanks for the info. I'm still exploring this. I realize it's a challenging business to enter right now, given the shortages, but I want to investigate it some more before I say no.

I just ordered the FFL application form from the BATF, and I will get that in progress.

freakshow10mm
04-19-2009, 7:20 AM
Here's a couple points from an ammo manufacturer (myself).

Carbide dies for pistol are used so no case lube is required. I lube anyways. Reduces work on the brass, increases their lifespan, and reduces wear on the dies.

Carbide for rifles still require case lube, but they are geared for production/ commercial work. That is probably what Dillon's rep was getting at.

Have backups. You should have at least two extra die sets and if using manual progressive machines (ie not a Camdex) you will want spare parts on hand and one extra conversion kit per press per caliber.

Have a pair of single stage presses for pulling bullets, short runs, and general work.

For insurance, check with guninsurance.com. Joe Chiarello has been around for decades and is the premier gun industry insurance company. There's about 5-6 in the US that will insure manufacturers. Prices for general liability start at $2100 per year, 30% down, 5 payments for the balance. Great people to work with.

Head to the Tax and Trade Bureau site (ttb.gov) and read about Federal Excise Tax. If you supply the brass and load it, FET is due, 11%. If the customer supplies the brass, you use exactly that same brass not even adding one piece of yours to supply, there is no FET due.

Make sure your powder storage is up to snuff. Get a lock on it. Store primers and powder on opposite sides of the shop. Might not be required but notify in writing and FTF your local FDs. Provide them with a sketch of your reloading area, quantities of powder, primers, how they are stored, fire safety recommendations (lot of extinguishers), escape plans, etc.

Save a batch of several (perhaps up to 100rds) of each lot of a load. Document, document, document. Your insurance company and the court will want to see this if there is any incident with ammo you used.

You can get ammo box packaging from Scharch Mfg in 20 and 50rd box and tray form as well as plastic boxes.

To get your name out there, hammer at police departments. They are a named government agency (only DoD and Coast Guard are FET exempt federal agencies, believe it or not) exempt from excise tax on the ammo. They need lots and for cheap. Get a small department on board, then word will spread and you will get bigger and bigger. Find out what calibers they use. Drop off 250rds of each with a business card. No charge. Just try it. Cops love free stuff and if you can eat 250rds for a sample to get a 50,000rd/yr contract signed, who cares about 250rds?

Cops like bulk packaging. Vacuum seal 100rds in a bag and toss 10 in a cardboard box. The officers take a 100ct bag to the firing line, do their thing. Admin can keep track of it better this way. Talk to them and get this specified in the contract.

Get your product in the local gun shops. Give them 100rds to try out. If they like it, get a sale. Always check with them to see how your product is selling. They are in the trenches, so get customer feedback from them. Provide information so they can answer questions for the customers.

Contact St Marks in FL. They make commercial blends for OEM ammo makers. Hodgdon will also pressure test IMR, Winchester, and Hodgdon powders (only) at no charge. Send them 50 rds and 10-12 primed cases for a baseline. They will provide results. Keep these documents.

Shiny ammo sells. Here's what my ammo looks like. All rifle ammo is loaded with less than .003" bullet runout.

.45 200gr XTP and 10mm 180gr XTP
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v239/freakshow10mm/Handloading/P4160008.jpg
.45/70 500gr LFP
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v239/freakshow10mm/Handloading/P7090006.jpg
.223 Rem 69gr SMK
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v239/freakshow10mm/Handloading/P4100013.jpg

Jpach
04-19-2009, 7:30 PM
Do you make "full power" 10mm loads Freak? And do you sell anything other than LSWC?

spy-d
04-19-2009, 7:48 PM
FREAKSHOW.

I can sell any reloads you may come up with. And I beleve that I can find all of the componets.

May I ask what are the mim. requirtments?

And I do all of the hauling myself.

Doug V
Paradise, CA

freakshow10mm
04-19-2009, 8:11 PM
I am thinking about selling real 10mm loads. I like heavy bullets in the 10mm.

I was working on some other stuff over the weekend but will probably decide on some loads shortly. I have a smooth shooter that's a 180gr JHP at 1300fps. Very accurate. I think a solid 180gr at 1300fps and 200gr at 1200fps should sell well. I put the lead load up because people want cheap ammo. I don't load cheap ammo, but I can offer a lesser priced load than jacketed.

I just checked and have 200 155gr XTP bullets, 200 180gr XTP bullets, 100 200gr XTP bullets, and a few hundred 220gr LFP bullets on hand. Should be able to get a few boxes of ammo loaded over the week and listed on my site.

I'll start a new thread in my vendor forum so this one doesn't get farther off topic.

Jpach
04-19-2009, 8:30 PM
Would you do custom loads on request? Once I get a 10mm I want my ammo to be as hot as safely possible

GuyW
04-19-2009, 9:00 PM
Find a location in urban CA where zoning allows such a use might be problematic...think the desert counties....
.

freakshow10mm
04-20-2009, 6:32 AM
Would you do custom loads on request? Once I get a 10mm I want my ammo to be as hot as safely possible
Check my subforum.
Find a location in urban CA where zoning allows such a use might be problematic...think the desert counties....
.
There's a few 01 FFLs here that are home based. I don't know the geography of CA that well, but there are some in cities that allow this. That seems to be the biggest hurdle with FFLs, especially manufacturing FFLs. I think if there is serious talk about bringing in investors to start things rolling it seems location isn't that big of a deal.

Depends on the investors. To develop your business plan, you are going to have to identify your product, your market, your equipment, your processes, your business structure, etc. The June 2006 issue of Business 2.0 magazine has an excellent article on this that is worth buying the backissue of this.

What is your business model? Are you going to sell to LE only, civilians only, mix of both? Just rifle, pistol only, shotgun ammo too? When you open the doors to your facility and look at the machines, what do you envision seeing: a bank of a half dozen Dillon 650s and 1050s with KISS bullet feeders or 4 Camdex machines lined up to make a run of thousands of rounds before caliber change? Do you picture automated machines running it or people pulling machine handles? You have to balance output goals with cost and maintenance of equipment versus payroll expenses. Dillon backs up their gear with a no BS warranty, so that might be worth it's weight in gold for a production setup.

Probably the biggest hurdle as far as business plan is the scope of your business. With your choices being rifle, pistol, and shotgun ammo those cover a multitude of possibilities.

I would figure out who your target market is. Then decide what cartridges to load. Next step is what types of loads. One or two loads for a given cartridge and that's it? A dozen loads? A few popular ones but willing to accept custom loads for a different bullet? Unique loads like light or heavy for caliber loads? Are you going to go alternative and load hard to find ammo or ammo for the big bore African cartridges (that's where the money really is).

Are you going to load seasonal hunting loads? I sell specialty ammo in the fall for .270, 308, and 30-06. Using monolithic copper bullets and special powder charges I make these cartridges maintain all the killing power that they are known for but the recoil is only that of a standard .243 Win rifle. I market these to youth hunters so they can get a "real" gun from the start and grow into the cartridge with step loads I load for them. They get high performance with low recoil and come back for more.

Another thing to consider is, and I think I mentioned this before, certain areas in your state have a no lead bullet rule. I'm sure with the number of hunters in CA you could do well in this area. Barnes makes monolithic bullets as well as Hornady just came out with one that you use SST data to load. I think Nosler has the E-Tip bullet and there might be another one out there. Most have .270, 7mm, and .30 caliber bullets in these varieties as those are the three most popular hunting calibers.

My number is on my site if you want to chat a bit more about this.