3 Things You Didn’t Know You Needed For Your Reloading Bench

3 Things You Didn’t Know You Needed For Your Reloading Bench

There are some relatively inexpensive extras you can pick up for your reloading bench that will make handloading all the more fruitful.

What are the reloading extras?

Reloading is an extremely satisfying endeavor, whether you’re rolling out precise target rounds or a little something to put meat on the table. And nowadays, given the profusion of pre-packaged reloading kits, it's a simple passion to pursue.

As you go along, you’ll discover there are little pieces of equipment you can add to your bench that will make the process easier and your ammunition all the more accurate. With that in mind, here are three things you didn't know you needed for your reloading bench. For the most part, you could get along without these, but overall they’ll make life a bunch easier at your reloading bench.

Lee-Powder-Measure-KitPowder Dippers
Typically, we think of ammunition reloading as a bulk endeavor and really almost all modern equipment is geared that way. But what if you want to whip up a handful of your favorite coyote or deer loads and don’t want to go to the trouble of filling up the hopper on your powder thrower?

Lee Precision has the answer for every small reloading job with its Powder Measure Kit. The 15 graduated dippers are perfect for scratching together 20 rounds or less and makes cleanup a nearly non-existent task.

While the kit comes with a slide card with powder dispensing data, it’s wise to double-check them with your scale, like with all volume measurements. But once you get used to using these little marvels and discover how quick they make little reloading jobs, you’ll fall in love with small-batch handloading.

Canned-airCanned Air
You ever notice that there are always a few grains of cleaning medium that hold fast to the bottom of some cases out of the tumbler? Or that no matter how hard you try, inevitably a few brass shavings from chamfering end up slipping down the neck? As persnickety as reloaders are, that just won’t stand, especially if it gets lodged in the flash hole.

Luckily, there is a simple solution that doesn’t involve bending a paper clip in a vain attempt to fish out debris — canned air. A quick blast in the flash hole and the inside of your case will be as clean as the outside. Honestly, the stuff is like vaporous gold when it comes to custodial jobs at the reloading bench — even beyond case prep.

Hornady has a Quick-Shot Canned Air, but don’t think you have to buy something made by a reloading company. The stuff at your local megastore will do.

You assembled a killer load for your favorite rifle, it grouped like gangbusters at the range, and you can’t wait to put together a whole bunch more. But there were a slew of variables that came together to make that load a success — so many you’ll never remember them all.

That’s why, perhaps next to a quality reloading manual, a notebook is among your most important tools. Meticulous note taking will ensure that you have the right recipe to recreate those deadly-accurate successes that roll out of your press and it acts as a solid reminder of what just doesn’t work.

Don’t lose what came together to make a magic load because you were unwilling to spill ink. Besides, it costs less than anything else you put on your reloading bench.


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Elwood Shelton is the Digital Editor for Gun Digest. He lives in Colorado and has provided coverage on a vast spectrum of topics for GD for more than a decade. Before that, he was an award-winning sports and outdoors reporter for a number of newspapers across the Rocky Mountains. His experience has consisted of covering the spread of chronic wasting disease into the Western Slope of Colorado to the state’s ranching for wildlife programs. His passion for shooting began at a young age, fostered on pheasant hunts with his father. Since then, he has become an accomplished handloader, long-range shooter and avid hunter—particularly mule deer and any low-down, dirty varmint that comes into his crosshairs. He is a regular contributor to Gun Digest Magazine and has contributed to various books on guns and shooting, most recently Lever-Actions: A Tribute to the All-American Rifle.


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