November 18, 2021
By J. Scott Rupp
If you’ve been hunting for reloading components as I have, you’ve seen what I’ve seen: empty gun store shelves and “out of stock” notices on website descriptions. Even tools and accessories are hard to find. Never seen anything like it. This explosion in demand for reloading supplies has meant that companies are mostly directing their efforts into getting current products in the supply pipeline, as opposed to developing new ones. However, there are some cool new things out there. But I gotta warn you, much of it was unavailable as I was putting this together in mid-January. So be patient.
- 6mm Elite Hunter (108 gr.)
- .257 Elite Hunter (133 gr.); Long Range Hybrid Target (135 gr.)
- 6.5mm Long Range Hybrid Target (153.5 gr.)
- .224 full metal jacket boattail (55 gr.)
- .458 copper-plated round shoulder (350 gr. for .458 SOCOM)
- .277 Terminal Ascent (155 gr.)
- 7mm Terminal Ascent (175 gr.)
- .308 Terminal Ascent (215 gr.)
- 6.5mm AccuBond Long Range (150 gr.)
- .277 Ballistic Tip (160 gr.)
- 7mm Ballistic Tip (170 gr.)
New Dies & Die Accessories
- Pro Series (see description below): .223, 6.5 Creedmoor, .300 BLK, .308
- AR Series (small-base sizer, taper crimp seater): 6mm ARC
- Micro-Adjust bullet seaters: 6mm BR Ackley Improved, .300 PRC, .300 Norma Mag., .338 Norma Mag.
- .22 GT, 6mm BR Ackley Improved
- 6.5 PRC, .284 Win., .300 Win. Mag., .300 PRC
- .32 Win. Spl. (Large Rifle primer)
Hornady M2 Digital Bench Scale
Accurate to 0.1 grain, the M2 has leveling feet and a bubble level to ensure you get all that accuracy. A large LCD display is backlit for easy reading, and it comes with a plastic windscreen to eliminate errors due to air currents. Capacity is 1,500 grains, and there’s onboard storage for the calibration weights.
RCBS 1500 Pocket Scale
The company describes this small scale as “rugged,” and it promises 0.1-grain accuracy and a 1,500-grain capacity. Powered by two included AAA batteries, it features an easy-to-read display. Comes with a check weight and powder pan, and it’s covered by a one-year warranty.
RCBS Case Prep Center
This one-stop shop runs off a 24-volt motor that provides nine inch-pounds of torque to make quick work of prep tasks. The six-station unit has micrometer adjustment for quick setup and precise cuts, and it includes large and small primer pocket brushes, chamfer and deburr tools and an alignment gauge. A spring-loaded shellholder handles case head diameters from .250 to .625 inch and lengths from .720 inch to 3.375 inches.
Lee Ram Swage
If you pick up range brass or use military brass yourself, you may need to swage primer pockets on cartridges such as 5.56/.223, 7.62/.308 and .30-06. The Ram Swage works on all single-stage presses with 7/8x14 threads that accept universal press shell holders. It has spring-assisted case extraction, and an all-steel case guide ensures cases will be centered on the push rod. It’s a shellholder-less design and will work on any large or small primer pocket.
Big Book of Gun Gack III
We’re fortunate to have John Barsness as one of our contributors. His latest book, The Big Book of Gun Gack III, is a wide-ranging tome, but of interest here are chapters on rifle die design, compressed charges other reloading topics—plus the cartridge-specific chapters that include cartridge backgrounds and load recipes. These include 6mm Creedmoor, 6.5 PRC, .270 Win. (new bullets and powders), modern 7x57, 7mm Rem. Mag. (new bullets and powders), .308 Win., .30-06 (for the M1 Garand), .40-65 WCF and .50-70 (trapdoor Springfield).
Nosler Reloading Guide No. 9
The latest guide from Nosler features load data for 101 rifle and handgun cartridges, with hundreds of new recipes. New cartridges include the .20, .22 and .24 Noslers, 6mm Creedmoor, 6.5 PRC, .27 Nosler, 7.62x39 and .33 Nosler. Each cartridge section starts out with a short introduction article (shameless plug: yours truly wrote the intro for the .300 Savage), and upfront you’ll find a section on handloading tips and techniques.
Lyman Pro Series
These new dies are optimized for the company’s Mark 7 and other automated presses, but they’ll work fine on single-stage, turret and progressive presses, too. Made of stainless steel, they have highly polished carbide rings for wear resistance and reduced sizing force, and the sizing dies have a spring-loaded decap system to ensure primers are kicked out of the pockets. Rifle sets include the company’s M die neck expander, which features a two-step expander plug, as well as a micrometer seating die and taper crimp die.
Lee Automatic Case Primer
The ACP automates priming thanks to a system that doesn’t require shellholders. Cases are guided into position via a “finger guide,” and consistent seating depth is made possible by Lee’s new “dead-length” priming device. The process is effortless due to the ACP’s powerful linkage. If you really want to speed things up, add the universal case feeder or case collator and a folding priming tray—all of which are sold separately. The stand on which the ACP is shown in the accompanying photo is also sold separately.
Lyman AR Reloading Handbook 2nd Edition
Dedicated solely to the AR platform, the second edition of Lyman’s handbook includes practically every AR chambering from .223 Rem. up to .50 Beowulf—with relative newcomers .224 Valkyrie, .22 Nosler, .24 Nosler and .350 Legend. Data feature popular brands of bullets and powders, and it even has cast bullet data as well as subsonic loads. Accompanying articles cover topics like building an AR and AR gas-length systems.
RCBS Uniflow III powder Measure
The big thing with this volumetric measure is it employs a single metering screw, which allows handloaders to use just one rotor and metering cylinder when loading either handgun or rifle cartridges. The Uniflow III can throw charges as small as 0.5 grain up to 120 grains, and it will hold up to one pound of extruded powder or a half-pound of flake powder. Accuracy is enhanced by the anti-static hopper.
RCBS Reloading Kits
Looking to get into this rewarding—and sometimes necessary—hobby? RCBS is offering four upgraded reloading kits that will start you off on the right foot and save you money over buying all the components separately. Common items to all include a press, Speer manual, funnel, deburring tool, loading block, spray lube and more. The Explorer Reloading Kit 2 and Partner Reloading Kit 2 come with Reloader Special 5 press and now include the new 1,500-grain digital scale, and the Partner 2 includes the Uniflow III powder measure. The Rebel Plus and Rebel Master kits feature the new Rebel press, as well as the Uniflow III. Prices for all kits vary based on the number of tools and accessories provided.
Hornady G3-1500 Scale
I’ve worked with both previous generations of this scale, and I’ve used them a lot because they’re really handy—quick to calibrate and fast and simple to use, with a small footprint that won’t hog space on your bench. This new third generation has a 1,500-grain max capacity; a large, backlit digital screen; and onboard storage for the calibration weight. Protection is provided by a hinged, clear plastic lid.
2021 Hodgdon Annual Manual
Always excited to get a new Annual Manual from Hodgdon because it encompasses so many key powders, such as Hodgdon, IMR and Winchester. And it’s not bullet specific, so it’s a great resource to start loading for a cartridge or to find a new recipe for a round you’re already loading. There are more than 5,000 rifle and pistol cartridge loads—including new data for 33 cartridges—in the manual’s 168 pages. Available at newsstands or at the company’s website.