Everyone who shoots a lot eventually develops an interest in reloading. Usually that interest is driven by simple economics. Unless you own a gold mine or a hedge fund, the cost of ammunition is usually the main limiting factor in how much shooting we do. But saving money isn’t the only benefit of reloading.

Reloading isn’t some arcane, dark art. It is about as straightforward a process as the mind of man can devise. There are three areas you have to deal with before you can start reloading—documentation, tools and components.

Handbook

Most shooters like gear and gadgets. So if you are anything like me, when you hear that list your mind immediately wants to go to tools. That’s the fun stuff, but of the three areas I outlined, documentation
is the most important. The best gear in the world is worthless if you don’t know how to use it to build safe, effective ammunition. Before you spend a dime on gear, you should invest in a good reloading handbook. There are several excellent ones, but there are two that I use all the time, the first is the Hornady Handbook of Cartridge Reloading and its mate on the bookshelf is the Norma Bullet Company Reloading Manual. Besides plenty of useful general information, these books list safe loads for virtually every cartridge on earth. When I’m getting ready to work up a new load I check both books.

Find out more in the Complete Book of Guns 2014—on newsstands NOW!

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