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Thread: casting and realoading seems cheaper that 22 LR ammo

  1. #1
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    Default casting and realoading seems cheaper that 22 LR ammo

    casting and realoading seems cheaper that 22 LR ammo, cant believe the prices of some 22LR ammo.

  2. #2
    runfiverun runfiverun's Avatar
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    primers'll kill ya though.
    the 2 places hard to save primers and powder.

  3. #3
    Dogs Like Him versifier's Avatar
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    I admit I haven't done the calculations recently, but if you cast your own and loaded .22 Hornets (you don't need GC's) I think it would be cheaper than buying decent .22lr's., as long as you don't figure in your time. Finding moulds for bullets lighter than 55gr may be a challenge, though. I think it would still be cheaper to buy the rimfires than to load in larger cases at this point. Like r5r said, primers and powder are the problem. The less powder you can get away with, the cheaper it is, but you can't use less than one primer/round.
    "Stand your ground.
    Do not fire unless fired upon.
    But if they mean to have a war let it begin here."
    - Capt. Parker, Lexington Militia, April 19, 1775

  4. #4

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    A long time ago, I had it figured out that if I reloaded a single case five times, and most cases can bear ten (10) loadings, that I could for a fact shoot cast boolits cheaper'n .22 RF. If you figure primers at .04 cents each and .22 RF at .07 cents, it still comes close...
    Jim Fleming

    I will bleed, Red, White & Blue forever.

    USAFR (Retired)
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  5. #5
    GunLoad Trainee RevRich's Avatar
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    The cost of reloading obviously depends mainly on your cost of components but other factors can add to the costs as well. When figuring my cost of production I generally ignore many of the more minor costs. But some things to think about when you are estimating the cost of bullet production.

    Brass: Because the brass that I use is all scrounged range brass supplemented by bulk buys of used brass I discount the cost of the brass entirely. Some may not be able to do this

    Lead: By casting your own bullets you can save a bundle on one of the most expensive components. However the lead does cost something. Since I also gather range lead and was lucky enough to buy 100 lbs of linotype dirt cheap a few years ago I estimate the lead at $0.50/lbs

    Powder: Obviously different powders cost different amounts but a good average is $18/lbs. The numbers below are figured with actual costs

    Primer: If you are lucky, today you can still find primers for $30/1000 but more common is $33/1000

    Time: You can not figure in your time or there would be no point.

    Equipment: Again, unless you want to become terminally depressed, the equipment cost should not be figured in either. For most people, myself included, this is a hobby not a business.

    Overhead: This includes the electricity to heat the lead pot and keep the lights on, misc costs like bullet lube and flux, Smelting cost for all that range lead, relationship maintenance (Dinner, flowers, jewelry) to keep your spouse from leaving you, wasted material such as a primer fed incorrectly, spilled powder, a sprew that flew, etc. Overhead is hard to figure and getting a little to piniskitty for my tastes anyways so I don’t even think about it.

    I load most of my rounds light so the numbers below are a few hundredths lower than for someone who likes hot loads. Also, if you are more stringent on your brass needs and buy new or limit the number of reloads before discarding (If you do this send it to me, I will dispose of your unwanted brass) you may have to amortize those cost in as well. Depending on the weight of the bullet and the amount of powder dropped, the per round cost of reloading the calibers that I produce are:

    380/9mm $0.039 - $0.042
    38 Special/357 mag - $0.040 - $0.055
    45 auto - $0.041 - $0.055
    223 - $0.077 - $0.084

    I recently bought a brick of CCI Blazer for $20 or $0.040 per round. I also can find those bulk 22lr packs for about $16 per around 500 (some are 550 other 555 still other 525). Per round cost of the bulk 22lr ammo without figuring a frustration factor for all the fail to fire and fail to feed issues is between $0.029 and $0.031.

    So as you can see, if you buy the moderate and expensive 22lr ammo reloading you own ammo is marginally less expensive but you still can’t beat the bulk 22lr costs.
    Last edited by RevRich; 03-05-2010 at 04:25 PM.
    Sincerely,
    Reverend Rich

  6. #6
    Refillin' for 36 years
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    I just had to come into this one.

    First off, I absolutely LOVE shootin' the double-deuce. No worries about finding 49 out of 50 brass, who cares about split cases, and I've never had one overloaded with powder. BUT, there's no way that I could ever enjoy JUST shooting 22's. And that's where the true cost savings of reloading comes to light. Last spring, I was in a sporting goods shop in Casper, Wyoming. It's a good place, and their prices are reasonable - sometimes unbelievably low.
    As I was strolling past the factory ammo, I happened to glance up an find 41 Magnums - I have a Dan Wesson 41, so I'm kind of tuned in to that caliber. For a box of 50 rounds - LEAD bullets, $52.00. Now I don't know 'bout you-all, but I'd have to say that even at jacketed bullet prices, and 50 bucks a brick for primers, I can STILL beat that. And more importantly, I can continue to shoot my other big bores; for some of which factory ammo is 30-60% HIGHER than that box of 41's. My old single-stage RCBS press is still rock-solid, and my best friend - economically speaking. The wife does OK with me here at the bench. She knows where I am, she knows it is a hobby and not a competition for her affection, and she likes the 38's that I load for her. I'm going to stop here, 'cause I have some 7.62x25's to process.
    M.

  7. #7

    Thumbs up

    Well said, Mike... Very well said!
    Jim Fleming

    I will bleed, Red, White & Blue forever.

    USAFR (Retired)
    NRA Life Member
    VFW Life Member

  8. #8
    Dogs Like Him versifier's Avatar
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    If you really want to choke, look at the prices for big bore rifle ammo. I saw a box of TWENTY for over $300. Good thing there aren't any cape buffalo or elephants running around the woods in New England.
    "Stand your ground.
    Do not fire unless fired upon.
    But if they mean to have a war let it begin here."
    - Capt. Parker, Lexington Militia, April 19, 1775

  9. #9
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    I get together with my shooting buddies and we make large purchases of powder and primers when we need to and it is available.

    The last time we did this we got Wolf primers in Large pistol and rifle, small pistol and rifle and only paid $95 per a box of 5,000 including shipping and hazmat.

    We also obtained a large supply of Swiss black powder and a variety of smokeless powder for a variety of prices that ran somewhere around $19 a lb for Swiss Blackpowder and about $120 for 8 lb kegs of smokeless. Our whole order was for over $4,560 and saved us a bunch of money.

    The UPS guys hate me. It took two of them 10 minutes to unload their truck onto my front porch and when it was done I gave them each a large bottle of iced tea and a double sawbuck. Now they love me!

    I presently have about 40K in primers and over 150# of powder and over 2 tons of alloy ingots in my garage. My neighbors know nothing and I plan to keep it that way.

    I see that Wiedners now has Wolf primers back in stock for $25.50 per 1K. I probably will have to wait for another 6 months to a year to make another order. I hope the prices drop before then.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check        

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