4 Best Reloading Kits for Beginners to Read if You are Indecisive

Dealing with a reloading kit to reload ammo is not as challenging as a beginner thinks. If you get the right package, then it’s a cakewalk to complete a single round of reloading.

With that said, it’s equally a daunting task to choose the best reloading kit for beginners.

Why?

It’s because you have several brands and models to choose from, and it’s quite obvious to get puzzled to decide on one.

No worries. Let me separate the wheat from the chaff for you.

In this guide, I’m going to review 4 best reloading kits for beginners mentioning all the benefits and pitfalls of each of the packages.

Here is what I considered most to shortlist the options –

  • First and foremost, if the kit is user-friendly or not.
  • Is the price beginner-friendly?
  • The quality, durability, and performance.
  • If it’s acceptable among the other real reloaders or not.
  • If the kit includes all the necessary instruments and tools or not.

So, without any further ado, let’s fire away.

4 Best Reloading Kits for Beginners – Detailed Review

1. RCBS 9354 RC Supreme Master Kit (Reloading Kit) Review

Benefits

  • It’s a pretty easy to use reloading kit.
  • It’s quite easy to mount and start the proceedings.
  • The kit contains all the necessary tools required for a beginner (except dies and shell holders).
  • The press and other tools excel in quality.
  • It offers a versatile handle location, which is useful for both left-handed and right-handed reloaders.
  • The scale is sensitive and gives accurate results.
  • The hand primer makes life effortless. It’s easy to control and gives a good feel.
  • A useful reloading manual is included in the package.
  • It’s worthwhile for a beginner in terms of money.
  • This one is an old brand and knows how to satisfy the customer by backing up the warranty and customer service.
  • This reloading kit is made in the USA. It gives an assurance of quality, unlike China-made products.

Pitfalls

  • I wouldn’t mind getting a digital scale at this price range.
  • A case trimmer with the kit would have been a useful add-on, particularly, for reloading rifle ammunition.

Synopsis

A beginner requires a simple yet effective reloading press, which is durable too. This single-stage reloading press kit from RCBS offers that simplicity and usability for the beginner reloaders.

This press lets you reload longer calibers, which is some feature that any beginner loves to have.

Here is the list of tools and instruments you are getting with the kit –

  • Rock Chucker supreme single press.
  • A 5-0-5 scale.
  • Powder measure.
  • Nosler #7 reloading manual.
  • A straightforward to use and handy hand priming tool.
  • Powder funnel.
  • Hex key set.
  • Case lube kit.
  • A lube pad.
  • Debur tool .17-.60 Caliber.
  • A caseload block.

If you want to reload rifle cartridge, then you need to buy a case trimmer, dies, and calipers separately.

Only buying the appropriate shell holder, and reloading dies will let you reload a large variety of calibers with this kit.

Remember, this reloading kit is not for reloading shotgun shells. This press is for reloading pistol and rifle ammunition.

Though I expect a bit more elaborate instruction manual, the combination of reloading manual and YouTube videos are sufficient to answer anything, though.

Overall, this one is one of the best reloading kits for beginners considering the quality and price.

2. Hornady Lock-N-Load Classic Reloading Kit Review (Classic Deluxe)

Benefits

  • This is one of the top-notch reloading kits for reloading both pistol and rifle ammunition.
  • The powder measure hopper is significantly large in size.
  • The powder measure comes with a v-shaped baffle that regulates the powder flow handsomely.
  • A digital scale comes with the kit that gives an accurate reading always.
  • A comprehensive user manual (Hornady 10th edition) is included in the package that covers an enormous variety of data.
  • The handle gives you enough leverage and power, as it’s pretty long enough.
  • Hornady’s famous lock-n-load bushing system lets you insert and remove the dies swiftly.
  • The ‘O’ frame offset press (it sits sideways) design allows you to access the shell holder/cartridges with ease.
  • The press mounting process is pretty straightforward.
  • This press features the positive priming system (PPS) that makes the priming even smoother.

Pitfalls

  • A somewhat shaky powder trickler comes in with this reloading kit.
  • The handle is smooth but not smoother than the RCBS one.
  • The digital scale tends to respond slowly.
  • The offset design and the handle don’t make it a suitable reloading kit for a lefty.

Synopsis 

This is another single-stage reloading press kit that offers everything you require as a beginner.

Here is what the kit includes –

  • A quality reloading manual with a lot of weird recipes covered.
  • A classic single-stage reloading press.
  • Primer catcher.
  • Digital scale.
  • A universal reloading block.
  • Hand priming tool.
  • Positive priming system.
  • Lock-n-load powder measure.
  • A powder measure stand.
  • Bullet Puller.
  • Shell holders (1,2,5,16,35).
  • A dial caliper.
  • Powder funnel.
  • Chamfer and deburr tool.
  • Powder trickler.
  • Case lube.
  • Six die bushings.
  • Straight OAL gauge.
  • Six sure-loc lock rings.

I know it’s a big list.

You can buy the classic kit version spending less money than this, or you can only buy the loader if you have other instruments already in your collection.

If you buy this classic deluxe kit, you will get a powder measure stand. But if you buy the classic kit, then you won’t get the stand. You have to buy it separately in that case.

However, you can install the powder measure to an RCBS stand too. So, if you already have the RCBS stand and you are going to buy the classic kit, then no need to buy the Hornady stand again.

3. Hornady Lock-N-Load Iron Press Kit Review

Benefits

  • It features an ambidextrous handle location to support both left-handed and right-handed reloaders.
  • The press and other instruments are well built, rigid to offer precision reloading.
  • The kit includes a digital caliper that gives a precise reading.
  • The automatic priming system helps to complete the priming process in a quick time and effortlessly.
  • A useful bench scale comes in that gives accurate results.
  • The reloading manual is quite comprehensive and full of recipes for a lot of calibers.
  • The press utilizes Hornady’s lock-n-load bushing that helps to remove and inserting dies without any hassle.
  • Hornady headspace comparator comes in with the package to increase accuracy, enhance safety, and extend brass life.
  • Some shell holders are included in the kit.

Pitfalls

  • A loading block and a primer flip tray would have been a handy addition to the package.

Synopsis

This very reloading kit costs a bit more than other models I’ve reviewed here. However, it’s still worth buying this kit because of the features it offers, the performance, and the accuracy of the tools and instruments.

This kit includes the following items –

  • A reloading press.
  • Headspace comparators (set of 6).
  • Automatic priming system.
  • Large and small primer pocket cleaner.
  • Powder measure.
  • Lock-n-Load bench scale.
  • Component feed bin and bracket.
  • Chamfer and deburr tool.
  • Powder funnel.
  • A digital caliper.
  • Shell holder kit.
  • A reloading manual by Hornady.
  • Case lube.
  • Lock-n-load die bushings (3 pieces).
  • Die caddy.
  • Neck brushes, (6).

You may have to buy the shell holders specific to your caliber and a way to trim cases.

If quality is the only concern for you and you are not worried about spending some money, then this one is the best bet for you.

4. LEE Precision Breech Lock Challenger Kit Review

Benefits

  • The reloading press is quite simple to use.
  • A total of 11 auto-prime shell holders come with the kit that supports more than 115 different cartridges. (A shell holder chart is also included inside the box).
  • A quick change bushing is included in the package that makes it easy to remove and insert the dies in a quick time.
  • The powder scale gives satisfactorily accurate results.
  • You can set the powder measure to turn on and off by a simple twisting system.
  • You have the option to mount the powder measure on the bench in quick time using the heavy-duty mounting bracket.
  • You can set the handle to either side, depending on your preference. So, it is for both left-handed and right-handed reloaders.
  • You have the liberty to install the handle at any height to get the desired leverage.
  • It’s quite inexpensive.

Pitfalls

  • No reloading manual is included in the kit. You have to buy it separately. However, the package consists of one of the best powder measure manuals and a manual for the press itself.
  • The ball of the handle tends to come off at times. You can put the ball back on without any trouble, though.

Synopsis

This LEE Precision breech lock challenger kit contains a single-stage ‘O’ shaped reloading press that helps the beginners operate the reloading process effortlessly.

To use the Lee auto prime, you must have to use the auto-prime shell holders that come with the package. Otherwise, other standard shell holders won’t work for the auto primer.

Here is the list of accessories you will get inside the package –

  • A single-stage press.
  • A hand priming tool.
  • Powder funnel.
  • One Breech lock bushing to quickly change the shell holders.
  • A powder measure
  • Lee’s safety beam scale.
  • Lee value trim case trimmer.
  • Sizing lube tube.
  • Cutter & lock stud.
  • A chamfer tool.
  • Primer pocket cleaning tool ( both for small and large primers).
  • Safety Prime tools (both for large and small primers).

Yes, this kit doesn’t include some of the instruments and tools that other kits include, like a lube pad, reloading manual, caliper.

But look at the price. You are getting the essential items within that price. So, it’s quite economical, I would say. You can always buy the missing instruments separately.

Remember, you have to buy your caliber specific reloading dies and shell holders. You are going to use the cutter and lock stud; you have to buy the accurate case length gauge for the particular caliber.

On the whole, if you are looking for a budget reloading kit that shines in simplicity and quality, you can go for this option.

Now let’s get to the next section. That is the buying guide for a reloading kit for beginners.

Best Reloading Kits for Beginners – Buying Guide

First of all, let me introduce some of the core instruments and tools that are required for the reloading process.

Introduction to Reloading Kits

Reloading Press

A reloading press is one of the significant components in the kit where you do the majority of the tasks. Here the cartridges sit in; the depriming, priming, powder insertion, bullet placing, crimping, etc. is done.

A reloading press can be of different shapes. I like the ‘O’-shaped one most. If it’s offset design (sits sideways when mounted), then it’s even better. Because in this case, you get better access to cartridges. The Hornady Lock-n-Load classic kit offers this type of offset press design.

Any good reloading press should feature ambidextrous handle facility to support both left-handed and right-handed reloaders.

Reloading Manual

A reloading manual is the essential guide for you without any doubt whatsoever. If you don’t want to follow a reloading manual, then don’t reload any ammunition. Yes, it’s that important.

A reloading manual consists of so many recipes where you will be able to see the right volume of powder required for different calibers. Of course, some other instructions, including a reloading guide. You must follow the various recipes for the specific caliber you want to reload.

Almost all the reloading comes with a handy reloading kit. However, some packages don’t include one. You must have to buy one in that case.

Powder Measure

A powder measure is a kind of dispenser. It ensures the correct volume of powder going to the caliber during the reloading process.

First, you will set the volume of the powder according to the recipe for that caliber that you will find in the reloading manual.

To be more than 100% sure about the volume of powder, you will want to use the measuring scale in conjunction with the powder measure.

Measuring Scale

A kit may contain a beam scale or a digital scale for measuring the powder. Whatever it is, you are advised to measure the powder accurately before you use it in the brass.

As long as it gives the precise result, beam scale, or digital scale, both serve the purpose well.

Calipers

Some reloading kits for beginners come with a caliper, some not. If the package you are going to buy doesn’t offer a caliper, then you should buy one separately.

You can buy a digital caliper or a dial caliper. Both work well.

You must measure the height of the reloaded cartridge. If the height doesn’t match according to the recommendation, then you may have to adjust the bullet again.

Reloading Dies 

Reloading die is another crucial element in the reloading kit. Mostly, you need to buy reloading die separately for your specific caliber.

A reloading die is used for depriming, shaping, and resizing the brass shell, expanding the case mouth, inserting the bullet, and crimp it if required.

When you buy reloading dies specific to the caliber, better buy a set of dies instead of a single die at a time.

Some Other Instruments and Tools

In addition to the above instruments and tools, you will get some other cool tools like

  • Powder funnel.
  • Powder trickler.
  • Chamfer and deburr tool.
  • Case lube kit.
  • Hand priming.
  • Bullet Puller.
  • Primer catcher, and so many other instruments.

All have their own functionality.

Price

The price varies. But no reloading kit for beginners should cost you a fortune. All the kits I’ve listed here are quite affordable and worth the price.

The price may vary from $150 – $550, depending on the number of instruments and tools you are getting with the kit, and the quality of those items.

Press Type

You typically have three types of reloading press.

  • Single-stage.
  • Turret press.
  • Progressive press.

Among those three reloader types, the progressive press is NOT the perfect option for a beginner. So, if you are a complete beginner, stay away from buying a progressive press.

A single-stage press is the perfect option for a beginner. The turret press is good to go too.

Single-Press Reloading Press

Using a single-press reloading press, you will have to go through the steps one after another. That’s why I believe it will be the most helpful solution for beginners.

Yes, it takes time to complete a single round using a single-press reloading press compared to turret press or progressive press. With that said, it doesn’t make a beginner overwhelmed, and lets him reload accurately without creating any mess.

Turret Press

With the help of a turret plate, the turret press performs several steps without needing to change the dies as the turret plate has 4 to 5 dies to sit and rotates.

This type of reloading press is also suitable for a beginner. However, if you don’t have any experience of reloading at all, then better don’t go for this. Instead, go for the single-stage reloading press.

Progressive Press

The experienced reloaders use a progressive press to complete several rounds of reloading in batch. This is not for you if you are a beginner.

Final Remarks

So, this is it.

Now, you can go for any of the above reloading kits. All of those are the best reloading kits for beginners out there. Yes, they vary in some benefits, pitfalls, and some other features, but none of them will disappoint you altogether.

None of the above kits break your bank too.

Remember, all the above reloading kit is ideal for pistol and rifle ammunition reloading. I have a plan to review some shotshell reloading kit too. Till then, happy reloading.

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