Best Reloading Press Reviews and Buyer’s Guide for 2021

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Ammunition can be very expensive, and buying cheaper imported quantities of ammunition or reloading with bulk purchases will only go so far as to reduce your cost. Fortunately for you though there is an easy way around this problem! Invest in some reloading ammunition like dies and press from companies such as Lee which have reasonable prices; then when it comes time for shooting practice all that’s needed are individual rounds of casings pulled straight out of their own barrels using these devices instead (and saving own ammo)!

Handloading is a fun and relaxing hobby that lets you make your own ammunition, which can be better than commercially produced ammo in almost every aspect. The first step of getting started handloading and get your own ammo is purchasing equipment for the task at hand; this includes everything from bullets to powder dispensers!

So, are you new to reloading in reloading or want to start reloading ammo? Then don’t worry, here I will explain to you what is actually a reloading press is and the types of reloading presses, the benefits of using a reloading machine, buying guides and as well the reviews of reloading ammunition too.

Best Reloading Presses: our and customer choices

Here, I am going to discuss the best reloading press which are available in the market right now. There were lots of reloading presses to choose from, but these top of the press caught my eyes because of their features.

So, top reloading presses on the market!

Best by our choice:

Last update on 2021-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Here we also categorized them based on types of reloading presses so that you can choose the best one for you. Let’s have a look at them!

Best by customer choice:
SaleBestseller No. 1
Hornady Lock-N-Load AP Press Loader – Ammunition Reloading Press with Quick Change Lock-N-Load Bushing System, EZ-JECT System and Powder Measure – Enjoy Fast and Reliable Reloading – Item 095100
  • Lock-N-Load Auto Progressive Reloading Press – Reload up to 500 rounds per hour with this professional grade, auto indexing, 5 station progressive press that features the patented Lock-N-Load bushing system. This must-have Hornady reloading equipment is intuitive and well equipped for all your reloading needs
  • Fast Reloading – Lock-N-Load technology allows you to stop loading, change dies and start loading another caliber in a matter of seconds thanks to the 5 station bushing system. Switch from 223 to 45 in less than 5 minutes
  • Quick and Reliable – The Lock-N-Load powder measure uses quick change metering inserts that allow you to switch from one powder to another with a push of a button. The EZ-JECT system ensures a reliable ejection of cartridges, every time without adjustments
  • Smooth and Precise – With a single pull of the handle, you’ll feel the smooth responsiveness, the rugged construction, and most of all, the power! And since the AP features automatic indexing, priming and ejection, every pull of the handle give you a precisely loaded round
  • What's Included – Item 095100. Includes 5 Lock-N-Load Die Bushings, 1 large cartridge bin, primer pickup tubes, metering inserts and rotors, Lock-N-Load Powder Measure, and case activated powder drop. All you need are dies and shell plates to start loading with your AP
Bestseller No. 2
RCBS 9356 Rock Chucker Supreme Press
  • Made of the highest quality materials
  • Hunting reloading presses
  • Another quality Bushnell product
  • Rock Chucker press frame provides a full four inches of ram-bearing surface to rigidly support the one inch diameter main ram
  • Handle is made of solid steel and features a comfortable ball-type handle grip
Bestseller No. 3
RCBS 9354 RC Supreme Master Kit
  • Includes nosler 7 reloading manual

Last update on 2021-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


Best Reloading Presses On The Market

RCBS Rock Chucker Supreme Press

RCBS 9356 Rock Chucker Supreme Press
  • Made of the highest quality materials
  • Hunting reloading presses
  • Another quality Bushnell product
  • Rock Chucker press frame provides a full four inches of ram-bearing surface to rigidly support the one inch diameter main ram
  • Handle is made of solid steel and features a comfortable ball-type handle grip

Last update on 2021-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

If you are new to reloading, RCBS Rock Chucker Supreme Press reloading would be a great reloading machine. Because it is easy to assemble, easy to install on your bench and most importantly, easy to operate. Just screw in the die that you want to use and the right shell holder. Next thing you know, your hands are already pulling the lever, pulling out and putting in hundreds of cartridges.

The reloading press RCBS had enough time and space to really invest in designing a heavy-duty reloading press on single-stage presses type. That is why it has over 85% of 5-star ratings on Amazon.

Pros
  • Simplicity rules well in here. It’s made to be easy to use and install even for beginners.
  • Heavy duty The gear withstands hundreds of pressing for whatever purpose you need. Because of this, it’s suitable for new to reloading who are not yet used to the reloading process.
  • Upgrade-able to the best progressive reloading press by adding Piggyback.
  • Now supports long cartridges better.
  • Smooth operation for almost any kind of activity.
Cons
  • This gear is a bit expensive. However, considering how RCBS really went their way to build a durable and heavy-duty simple reloading press.

Lee Precision Classic Turret Press (Red)

LEE PRECISION Classic Turret Press (Red) (Pack of 1)
  • If you are using the Auto-Disk Powder Measure on this press, the Auto Disk Riser will need to be Purchased to Provide Adequate Clearance for the Lee Safety Prime.
  • Features Solid Steel Linkage
  • The Industry's Largest Ram is Drilled Completely Through to Dispense Primers in an Attached Clear PVC Tube
  • Heavy Duty Construction

Last update on 2021-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Looking for a heavy-duty construction with great precision as well as being semi-automated reloading press? Then don’t think twice to choose Lee Precision Classic Turret Press reloading. It is an award-winning press that ensures you the quality and the trust.

Lee Precision Classic Turret Press is only a step back from an auto-progressive reloading press. So if you and looking for quality ammo and do not want huge quantities of ammunition, then just go for it.

Pros
  • The 4-die system allows you to adjust 4 dies at the same time and there is also a screw available to screw your priming tool on. You will still need to turn the lever four times.
  • Indexing rod turns the turret press to an auto mag turret press, reducing the step of turning the die after every pull of the lever. You can adjust to only do one process at a time and turn the die only when you want to by detaching the indexing rod.
  • Adjustable handle arm to suit your comfort and help you exert less energy for harder cases such as big brass rifle ammunition.
  • The semi-automated: reloading process makes this mag turret press almost feel like an auto-progressive reloading press. It saves you a lot of time and allows you to focus on only one thing at a time, but still be able to do everything in a single, effective and time-efficient rounds per hour.
Cons
  • The only con we could think of is how you need to purchase an auto disk riser for powder measure, which isn’t much compared to how easy it is to operate the gear.

Hornady 95100 Lock-N-Load Auto-Progressive Press

Sale
Hornady Lock-N-Load AP Press Loader – Ammunition Reloading Press with Quick Change Lock-N-Load Bushing System, EZ-JECT System and Powder Measure – Enjoy Fast and Reliable Reloading – Item 095100
  • Lock-N-Load Auto Progressive Reloading Press – Reload up to 500 rounds per hour with this professional grade, auto indexing, 5 station progressive press that features the patented Lock-N-Load bushing system. This must-have Hornady reloading equipment is intuitive and well equipped for all your reloading needs
  • Fast Reloading – Lock-N-Load technology allows you to stop loading, change dies and start loading another caliber in a matter of seconds thanks to the 5 station bushing system. Switch from 223 to 45 in less than 5 minutes
  • Quick and Reliable – The Lock-N-Load powder measure uses quick change metering inserts that allow you to switch from one powder to another with a push of a button. The EZ-JECT system ensures a reliable ejection of cartridges, every time without adjustments
  • Smooth and Precise – With a single pull of the handle, you’ll feel the smooth responsiveness, the rugged construction, and most of all, the power! And since the AP features automatic indexing, priming and ejection, every pull of the handle give you a precisely loaded round
  • What's Included – Item 095100. Includes 5 Lock-N-Load Die Bushings, 1 large cartridge bin, primer pickup tubes, metering inserts and rotors, Lock-N-Load Powder Measure, and case activated powder drop. All you need are dies and shell plates to start loading with your AP

Last update on 2021-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Our Best Auto-Progressive Reloading Press goes to the Hornady’s Lock-N-Load. The best progressive presses are able to get everything done in a single round while maintaining high precision. And we’re just letting you know that this thing here works the magic.

The auto-indexing feature is my favorite part of the press. Auto indexing feature makes your work simpler.

Hornady 95100 Lock-N-Load best progressive presses also work with other dies so long as you have the Hornady bushings to make it work. The bushing is where the process of changing dies for different caliber or reloading processes is made easy. The powder thru die that comes with it is also very accurate.

Pros
  • One-pull reloading process. There is no need to pull the level multiple times, insert the cartridges on your own. With a single pull, your reloading press will cycle the cartridges for the different dies you have installed and after 5 pulls, you get a finished bullet with 4 others on the way.
  • A 5-station bushing system allows you to fit up to 5 cartridges in a progressive press.
  • Universal case retainer will lock any kind of cartridges in place and you can do this manually or automated by the that best progressive presses.
  • Object system eliminates the annoyance when your auto-progressive press fails to eject the cartridge after pulling the lever. It really screws the tempo that you’ve already established!
  • A convenient bushing system makes the best progressive presses easy to install your dies on the press. Instead of turning so much, you only need to insert and twist it once.
Cons
  • This is rather expensive equipment to go with and you still need to buy the shell plate together. Unless you have a big need in reloading ammo, this is not a suggested starting equipment or for those who only reload a couple of hundred rounds per hour.

Lee Precision Anniversary Challenger Kit II

LEE PRECISION Anniversary Challenger Kit II (1 Unit)
  • Includes the Lee Safety Scale which is very sensitive
  • Has a power funnel to fill the case
  • A chamfer tool camfers the insdie and outside of thecase mouth

Last update on 2021-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

If you don’t like having to think about multiple things you need to get after ordering your press, Lee Precision did it for you. This kit includes their single-stage press with the necessary equipment to get started on handloading. At an affordable price that is!

This is an entry-level gear where every beginner will love to have. It helps you get introduced to the world of reloading as the kit comes with basic equipment at a very affordable price. If you only want to reload yourself, this is a great kit to get.

Pros
  • Affordable, which makes this a very good choice for beginners who are only introduced into the world of reloading.
  • Kit includes the Lee Safety Scale, a chamfer tool, and a power funnel.
  • Breech Lock Quick Change Bushing saves your time setting up the dies and allows dies from other brands to be used as well. Just insert it and give it a little twist to secure it in place.
Cons
  • Not for heavy-duty use and is limited to beginners. The scale, for example, is not the most capable and responds very slowly.

What is Reloading Press?

Whether you want to hand load or reload your ammunition, a reloading press is equipment that you must have. The brand of the gear that you get can determine many things about your reloading experience. Unless you are willing to get multiple reloading press kits, you need to really make the time to consider the pros and cons of each type and brand.

A reloading press is equipment that allows you to assemble a bullet from preparing the hull or case, using a powder measure to seating the bullet or shot on the case. It usually has a space in the middle where you can place your cartridge after attaching the right shell holder or plate. There is a lever next to it to push the shell up into the die.

It is usually installed onto the workbench to be operated. Dies are screwed or inserted above the cartridges. For dies that are size-specific, you need to adjust the size for each caliber before you can begin to size/prime/expand, etc. After you adjust, the reloading process will be repeated as you remove the finished case and insert it with a new one.

Note that you may not be satisfied with only a single gear. Many people ended up purchasing another one as they found themselves reloading hundreds of rounds per hour of a single caliber and don’t want to go through the hassle of adjusting so many things to reload a different caliber.

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Types of Reloading Press presses on the market

There are mainly three types of reloading press based on the number of culls held in a single round as well as the progress of the mag turret presses.

Type of press – Single-stage Press

Single-stage presses only has one stage of press you can use. Meaning, you can only attach one die and proceed with only one thing to do on the press. A single-stage press is very simple and easy to use as all you need to do is adjust the die on the press. You can find a suitable shell holder to be used.

Single-stage presses work by pulling the lever down and having the shell holder raised to the mouth of the die. Depending on what die you are using (or a powder measure), whatever you need to be done will happen when the cartridge is adjusted at the right height.

Type of press – Turret Press

While single-stage presses only have one die installed at a time, turret presses allow you to dial in multiple dies at the same time. This saves you the time of having to install and adjust different dies for different processes every time. A mag turret press is very convenient compared to a single-stage reloading press when you know what you want to load with your cartridges.

You need to pull the lever for every die. Once you pull it in, the stage will move to the next die and then you pull it in again. The only drawback of this is that you still need to pull the lever multiple times and only one cartridge can be loaded at a time.

Type of press – Progressive Reloading Press

At a glance, an auto progressive press looks very similar to a turret press as you are able to install multiple dies at the same time. But the big difference here is that in a single pull of the level, you get multiple things done on your cartridges. So, you will have shell plates.

Instead of having only one case, you can have multiple cases installed in an auto progressive reloading press. That’s why for a professional reloader it would be the best. With this progressive press you also can check each of the cartridges manually if you want to. It is also known as the best item for its huge amount of bullet-making capability.

Obviously, it’s very expensive in comparison and you need to buy a huge amount of dies as well as shell plates depending on the type of bullets that you load. But if you are willing to spend more for the hobby and need to reload or handled bulks of cartridges, this is the best choice to go with.

Hope my structured and honest review will help you to make the right decision on which press you should choose.

Things to Consider Before Purchasing top reloading presses

Every brand typically sells their own unit of reloading press and from there, they extend to manufacturing their own die and other equipment kits. Some can be purchased regardless of the brand of your gear, but do not that purchasing a particular brand press will mean limiting yourself on especially dies you can use.

Getting your first reloading press is also quite an investment to make from time, save money to the effort of assembling, installing, and testing them out. So, consider these facts before your choice.

It is NOT the price that determines the quality of a product. Sure, it may explain the materials used for the press, but it does not necessarily mean the best gear would cost $500 or more. On the other hand, some of you who thought of reloading yourself for the purpose of saving up the money from purchasing new ones should not be tempted to just purchase anything cheap.
For beginners, however, getting a single stage reloading press is better because you are allowed to know each die and reloading process one by one and not be confused with multiple setups at a time that happens with turret presses and auto-progressive press.
Budget to purchase more than just the press and a couple of dies. Depending on your needs, you may need to buy extra shell holders (there is also the fact that some equipment requires a different type of these parts).
Nothing is perfect no matter what the seller claims to you. Variance is bound to happen and because of that, no matter how reliable your reloading press has been, you need to develop a good habit of checking on the weight every couple of rounds. Small enough so that you don’t have to track back too far.
What are your needs for an item? Some people have to reload hundreds of rounds per hour, which makes it more convenient to own an auto-progressive press. But there are also people who only reload for fun, maybe a hundred or two every time. Owning a turret press or even a single stage press would make more sense for this person.
Brand-specific items. Some dies or equipment only works with a certain item. For example, some best reloading presses only work with certain dies, others like Hornady’s auto-progressive press needs bushings if you want to use other dies. Universal products are better choices in case that you reload various calibers and use equipment from different brands.
The durability of certain cheap reloading presses can be pretty low. They are not flimsy, but since we do mistakes at times, it’s a given that we don’t want a press that breaks at a single pull of a cartridge we forgot to lube. It doesn’t have to be made of titanium, but at least good enough to not break from just a few thousand pulls.
Optional: Get another reloading press. Depending on how advanced of a user you are, an additional press, even a single-stage press, will allow you to do a separate reloading process on a different caliber without having to readjust the dies again whenever you need to. You can also continue using your turret press or auto-progressive press which have been set up for a specific caliber.

How Does a Reloading Press Work?

First, you need to install the gear on your workbench. It can be screwed directly on the bench or you can install it on a mobile mount. The latter is more complicated to do, but the end result will give your workbench flexible space. Your best reloading presses can be moved around when you want to do something else or add new equipment to it.

Next is to prepare the press for your first reloading. You need to get the right die and shell holder for the caliber you are working on. Attach the shell holder and dial down your die. Here is the tricky part. Installing a die can be really complicated because you have to adjust it with the cartridge’s size and the result that you want.

Some of the best reloading presses come with bushings that allow you to use other dies easily and only a single snap is needed instead of turning the die up and down the press.

Check out tutorial videos for the caliber that you want and how to adjust the die for it. Every time you switch die for a different caliber, you need to readjust it. It’s usually a lot of tests on the correct sizing for the die.

After you get the right size, it’s time to repeat the process. Pull the lever, throw the cartridge into the finished box and take another cartridge, put it in place, and pull the lever again. From time to time, every 20, 50 or 100 rounds in an hour, check the condition of the cartridge that is processed.

For auto-progressive reloading presses, the setup is much more complicated. You have to prepare all the dies, the powder measure, etc. and use a shell plate instead of a shell holder. You prepare the small buckets and then pull the lever. The difference here is that once the lever is pulled all the bullets on the shell plate are raised up and processed at the same time.

So, the bullet will go around and after 5 pulls, it will be ejected out and a new one will drop and fill the space. Depending on what dies you use, it can go expanding and pouring powder through with an expander powder thru the die, then sizing, bullet seating, crimping, and repeat.

Safety Tips When Using a Reloading Press

Follow the manual that comes with the press. Any mistakes in installation from ignoring the manual could be fatal.
The black powder should only be reloaded by advanced reloaders. Beginners are better to stay away from this very explosive powder.
Use the right shell holder or plate. Depending on the caliber of the cartridges you want to process, make sure the cases snug onto the plate or holder comfortably.
Operate it based on instructions to ensure that your press will last as long as it’s needed. There are people breaking their brand-new best reloading presses from not following instructions, mostly beginners who are very enthusiastic about reloading.

Reloading/Handloading vs Buying Factory-Loaded Ammunition

The process of reloading is quite long, especially if you are reloading used ammunition. You need to thoroughly clean the cases by tumbling them. Then, you have to resize the case according to what you want as well as prepare the powder to be measured in. You also need to change the primers into a new one to make sure that the bullet is propelled nicely away from the gun/rifle towards your target.

Not to mention, reloading is not an activity you can just go anywhere. It has to be done with care and disposal of the unused powder should not be done carelessly. However, there are still many people preferring the activity of handloading their own ammunition over purchasing factory-loaded ammunition.

However, there are 3 major advantages of reloading or handloading your bullets yourself. Comparisons are made against factory-loaded ammunition that can sometimes cost a lot for your hobby.

One of the biggest advantages is the economy, where handloading or reloading used cartridges is much more efficient than purchasing a new set of ammunition. You get to reuse the cases or hulls that you find so long as you tumble them long enough, resize and seat new primers on them.
Accuracy is another factor as bullets that were loaded without human observation had a bigger margin of error. Handloading yourself allows you to measure the powder every couple of them to ensure accurate measurements. You also get to check and recheck each of the bullets on your own and make corrections on the setting once the equipment begins to show an error.
Hobby! While others buy their bullets, you get to make your own from scratch! You get to purchase your own cartridges, prime them, choose your own powder measure, and try different combinations. You also get to mix and match, so long as you know what you are doing. The fun of doing this cannot be compared to simply purchasing completely assembled bullets.
Customize your bullets the way you want them to. The risk is all yours to bear, but the fun in seeing how different measures will affect the firepower, accuracy, and explosion of the bullets don’t exist from simply purchasing standardized ones.

In the end, at a higher price, newly bought bullets do not mean that accuracy and performance are ensured. You also don’t know which one was measured wrongly. As a bonus, you don’t get to feel the joy of making your very own bullets to launch!

What Else Do You Need?

Cartridges: You need dies to start reloading whatever you want to do with your cartridges. For starters, if you don’t own the shell holders that will hold the case that you want to reload, you should purchase this together with your press. Usually, each company sells a set of these items that cover the majority of calibers that people workaround.
Tumbler: If you are reloading used cases, you will need a brass tumbling kit. This includes the tumbler and the media to clean the cases out of the dirt, grease, and gunpowder from it. You will need crimping and sizing dies as well as a powder thru die (or an expander powder that comes with the feature to expand the mouth of the case).
Bullet Puller: You will also need primer and deprimer tools. These two are sold separately and depending on your preference, you can purchase dies to install on your press or buy handheld versions that you can bring anywhere with you. Additionally, you will need a reliable scale, lube, and bullet puller and dustpans.
Reloading Manual: And most obviously, get yourself a manual! Many people workaround with a tablet or electronic device to read from, but we love to recommend people to reload manually. This is a better media as it does not work on electricity and is much more comfortable to read from.

These are just the main things you need. There are many more things that you will need and it depends on the kind of bullet you reload. But don’t worry! Take your step slowly, one by one. Explore caliber per caliber to figure out what kind of tools you will need and how to use each of them.

Choosing the right one for all these products can be confusing, but we’ve got reviews on them all, so check them out right after this!

Conclusion

There are many reloading presses, each with its own pros and cons. Thus, it’s important to look at your own needs. The best item is the one that lasts you long enough and processes your cartridges quickly enough to save your time. And you get your own ammo!

The simplest one is the single-stage reloading press. It’s very easy to operate and a beginner is advised to get this. A turret press is like multiple single-stage reloading presses merged into one. You don’t have to change dies too many times, saving your time a lot. Both beginners and experts will enjoy reloading or handloading with single-stage presses.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is the best reloading press on the market?

Best Press on the Market in 2021:
Lee Precision Breech Lock Hand Press.
Lee Classic. 308 Win Loader.
RCBS Rock Chucker.
Lee cast aluminum 4-hole turret press.
Hornady Lock N Load Progressive Press.
Dillon precision XL 650.
Lee Precision 50th-Anniversary Reloading Kit.

What are the best reloading kits?

Some great reloading kits:
RCBS Summit Single Stage Reloading
Lee Precision Turret Press.
Lee Precision II Shotgun Shell Press.
RCBS Rock Chunker Supreme Press.
RCBS Supreme Master Reloading Kit.
Dillon Precision Progressive Press.
Hornady Lock-n-Load Auto-Progressive Press.

What’s the best single-stage reloading press?

Best Middle Ground Single Stage Press: Hornady Lock n Load Classic.
Best Single Stage Press If You Want To Save Money: Lee Breech Lock Challenger.
Easiest Single Stage Press To Use: Forster Co-Ax.
Best Portable Gear: Lee Precision Solid Cast Iron Hand Press.

What will be the Best Reloading Press For Beginners?

Again, depending on your need, any of the four best reloading presses we have reviewed can be your need. However, we always recommend beginners to either get a single-stage press or a turret press. This is because these types of reloading presses don’t cost too much and they are still easy to operate. Cost-wise, these are many best reloading presses without forgoing quality.
Check your needs as well as how much you could afford to invest into reloading presses. Remember that you still have to purchase other types of equipment, so calculate all of that into your budget.
If you are interested to buy a press with a kit then you should read: Best Reloading Kit

Can I Use Different Dies on Different press?

Depending on the brand of the reloading press it can be yes or no. As explained before, it’s best that you check the product description on the requirement of dies, shell holders or bushings that can be used on it. Usually, reloading presses with bushings allow dies from other brands to be used and installed easily on it. It retains the setup and can be detached and installed anytime you want.

How to Maintain Your Reloading Press?

The reloading presses will last as long as you take good care of them. If it is made of iron, you need to prevent rusting by routinely cleaning it. You should also wipe or brush off powder residue after charging powders.
When using it, do not force the lever down too much, but just with the right amount of power to get your shell up into the die. Lube your cartridges properly before using the reloading presses.

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AUTHOR
Hans Wimberly
Hi. I`m Hans Wimberly. My hobbies are fishing and hunting. I use a lot of tools for my housework. If you want to choose the best gear, my experience will be useful for you. Thanks for your attention.

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8 thoughts on “Best Reloading Press Reviews and Buyer’s Guide for 2021”

  1. I personally use Hornady Lock-N-Load And it works awesome for me. But if you are new in reloading the try to avoid any progressive reloading press.

    Reply

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