Originally Posted by wtkaiser
I've been reloading since the 70s (that's 1970s, not 1870s) and I think the suggestion of starting with a progressive press is bad, bad, bad. I haven't read all the threads, but ANY suggestion like this will get this reaction from me. If you are just starting out, why get something that needs SO MUCH attention to detail? I have 2 presses for rifle/handgun. They're both Lees and one's a progressive and one is a turret. I use the turret 10 times as much as the progressive, easily. Why?
A progressive is set up for one cartridge, period. Yes, they can be changed, but it's an awkward and painful change. A turret press can be changed easily either by unscrewing dies and screwing new ones in, or getting a batch of turrets, screwing one set per turret and forgetting about it after that. Seems like a no-brainer to this old man.
A progessive needs WAY more attention paid to it than a turret press. Even with my Lee, which is a pretty simple progressive, I have had primers turn upside down, primers dropped, powder charges NOT dropped, partial powder charges and case mouths mashed by bullets seating. Now, it is true that most of those would be cause by the additional attention a progressive demands. But if you're a newbie, your apprehensive enough without having to sweat the details. Yes, you still have to pay attention, but because of the manual nature of a turret press (which, incidentally, I use mostly as a single-stage), you are going to catch more hiccups in the process before they become REAL problems. You'd be amazed, for example, how much powder can get spread around by a missed primer. That itty-bitty hole will pass a bunch of powder around, gumming up your press and sparking volleys of words your partner maybe doesn't want you to use. And that's if you catch it when it happens!
'nuff said. Unless you have an overpowering need for hundreds of rounds every week, stick with a single-stage or a turret. You'll spend a bit less time with the significant other/family, but shooting ammunition that you trust because you KNOW BEYOND DOUBT that it was done right is a really good feeling.
Wow - like Sebastian Cabot said to JW in Big Jake "that's more words I've said since I've knowed ya".