Most ammunition requires a turret press to create. But knowing which turret press to get can be a difficult for first time hand loaders, particularly if they are new to firearms as well. The best single stage press reviews can often be a lot for a first time buyer, and even the simplest reviews tend to require a newbie gunsmith learn a lot of vocabulary in order to understand what they’re buying. Knowing the terminology of the best turret press reviews can be important, as is knowing exactly what kind of ammunition your personal firearms collection will need ammunition for. Not every press can handle every type of ammunition and buyers should put some thought into the kinds of bullets they would like to manufacture if they wish to get the best value for their money.
Top Best Reloading Turret Press on the Market Reviews
1. Lee Cast Aluminum 4 Hole Turret Press
This turret press is a compound leverage system. This compound leverage system replaces old spring based systems and many buyers feel that this system is far superior to older models. A 4 hole turret press, this device also features an auto index with a reliable design. Its design is also intended put the lugs on the circumference of the turret so as to prevent tipping which can ruin the rounds or even damage the device. It also features a very powerful linkage intended to allow even the largest round casings, even the massive magnum cases, to be sized and fit with incredible ease of use. Some users have even found that it does not need the heavy bench typical to most turret presses, though it is still advisable to use a heavy bench.
Most gunsmiths find that the Lee Cast turret press is a very worthwhile piece of equipment for the price. Some users are ill at ease around the materials used, and some feel that aluminum and hard plastic are not enough for a turret press intended to make serious ammunition. Most gunsmiths reviewing the press are quite adamant that this device can absolutely handle a wide range of ammunition types for years on end with proper maintenance and consider this press a very worthwhile addition to their work benches. It does not, however, have a spent primer catcher which can lead to a lot of stains in a very short period of time. Investing in a spent primer catcher when using this device is advisable unless one does not mind stains on their clothes and workshop floor.
2. Lee Precision Classic Turret Press Kit
Coming in both a Value and Deluxe kit, the Lee Precision is a 4 hole turret system kit intended to handle a wide range of ammunition. The Value kit, which is a 4 hole turret press, has the auto indexing for cartridges up to 2.13 inch long, while the Deluxe kit (which is distinct from the Value kit, so buyers should be quite careful as to what they’re getting) includes the classic turret from Lee that can handle cartridges up to 3.13 in length, as well as coming with other pieces of hardware a gunsmith may find quite useful. Intended as a means by which people can begin the craft of making ammunition, this kit is intended for novice gunsmiths who are still learning the craft and intend simply to make ammunition for their own personal firearms.
Most buyers of both of these kits find themselves quite satisfied with them, citing a useful auto index where the turret advances when the lever is worked, useful for crafting large amounts of ammunition relatively quickly. A number of gunsmiths find a great deal of use for this and for many such crafters, this was a valuable first step in learning how to make ammunition. However, it is not the deluxe kit which many feel is a by far superior product, even at its increased cost, and many first time buyers find that it can be difficult to determine whether a storefront is selling the value or the deluxe kit. Some newbies to gun smithing to find that the value kit is a worthwhile place to begin, all criticism of the lower end models aside.
3.Lee Precision Classic Turret Press (Red)
This is the precision turret included in the Deluxe kit mentioned above, sold on its own for those who wish to purchase only the turret. However, it does require that the user also purchase an auto disk riser in order to work with the Lee safety prime, at least if they are using an auto disk powder measure. The system features a solid steel linkage intended to handle a wide range of ammunition types, and as mentioned above, it can handle rounds of up to 3.13 inches long, not bad for a beginner’s press. The company boasts of their product having the industry largest ram that is completely drilled through, a means intended to dispense primers via an attached PVC tube. Constructed for heavy duty work, many gunsmiths consider this a good place to start making ammunition.
Most people using this press are generally quite happy with it, citing solid construction, easy use in crafting even high numbers of larger rounds ranging from .38 specials to 30-06 rounds, all of which seems to be done quickly and without any problems. Some users are particularly happy with how this turret can single stage even 30-06 and 308 rounds, something that generally takes more effort on low end presses. However, many users find that Lee’s customer service and instruction manuals are less than ideal. Some report that their products come incomplete, with missing parts that the press absolutely does need to function. Most users also report that Youtube video tutorials are a better way to learn about how to use the turret press than any of the materials provided by the manufacturer.
4. Lyman T-Mag Reloading Turret Press Reviews
An offering from the Lyman corporation, this system is intended as a high speed turret built for power, versatility and precision in the crafting of rounds. The T-Mag II features an iron frame coated in a silver hammer tone coating intended to make the product last a lifetime with proper maintenance. It uses a compound leverage system to ensure a smooth operation with all the power needed to handle nearly any type of firearms ammunition, including the larger caliber rifle rounds such as the 308 and the 30-6. It can also handle magnum sized ammunition such as the .44 magnum round. Its handle can be adjusted for left and right handed use alike, and has a base that has been flat machined in order to comfortably fit on any heavy bench made out of either wood or metal.
Most users with this product feel that it does a good job of pressing the ammunition they need and most reviews are quite high. Particular praise is reserved for the product’s durability and ease of use. Many gunsmiths feel that those new to the field of reloading ammunition will get a lot of use out of this turret, and previous models of this design are mentioned to have lasted for decades. Lyman presses really are built to last and handle nearly any kind of conventional ammunition. However, some critics feel that the primer catcher, a plastic tray intended to catch used primer, is a far from ideal innovation over the older models’ previous primer trayers. Even slight bumps to the device tend to spill primer all over the place.
5. Lee Precision Classic Cast Press (Red)
This is the full deluxe kit mentioned above, a item many gunsmiths consider the ultimate introductory supplies to the craft of making ammunition. It includes the classic Lee turret press that most gunsmiths feel is a good fit for most beginners in this field. It also comes with a full set of Lee dies that enable the device to handle a very wide range of ammunition types for any number of uses. At its peak, the device can produce over 250 rounds in a single hour of dedicated work, though reaching this level of productivity can of course take some practice with the device. The kit also include a powder measure of the auto disk variety and a riser that lets it make any type of handgun or small rifle ammunition. It also includes a cutter, chamfer tool and lock stud, as well as a tube case sizing lube to help maintain the device.
Users new to hand loading ammunition find that this press kit is exceedingly useful for their first steps into the field, The tools are durable enough and the primer feeds seldom malfunction if the user knows what they’re doing. The trimming and maintenance tools are also highly regarded, and most critics find that they make loading rifle ammunition a two step process. Disabling the auto index to resize and reprime the brass in a session of ammunition making is generally regarded as a good idea. Again, Lee’s poor reputation for including instructions mean that most users are better served with online tutorials in using the device then they are in learning from the manuals included with the kit. While there are better systems out there, this one is regarded as the ultimate beginner’s kit.
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A turret press is a complex device that one should not attempt to use without some knowledge of the device and the process of using it first. Some of the best turret press reviews will also include links to places where one can learn how to use the turret presses properly, oftentimes in a way that is a better fit for the press itself than the manufacturer’s directions. The absolute best single stage reloading press will include these directions in their reviews as well. Using these devices can be complicated, and knowing exactly how they work can be quite important to ensuring they work right, and it behooves the user to study up on the process of making ammunition before they lay down their money for even a beginner’s turret press system. A beginning user likely does not need the most expensive kit, particularly if they do not need to make exotic ammunition types.
Turret presses, like all pieces of workshop equipment, do need to be maintained, particularly since they often deal with potential fire hazards like gun powder and primer. After extended use, parts will need to be maintained and thoroughly cleaned with specialized cleaning solutions, and lubrication is also an ideal way to ensure that a press lasts as long as possible. Turrets that are used for a long period of time should also be partially or completely disassembled (depending on the user’s skill level) so that individual parts can be cleaned properly. Keeping the area around the device clean is a good idea as well, particular around some of the aforementioned models that have an unfortunate tendency to spill primer all over the work area. And, while it should go without saying, it is inadvisable to smoke while making ammunition.
A good turret press and a bit of skill are a wonderful way for a gun enthusiast to save money doing something that is calming and relaxing, once they get the hang of it. Getting started can be quite a pain for some users as there absolutely is a learning curve to the process, but the right tools can smooth out the initial rocky beginning. But knowing what you need and what you’re buying are very important to buying that first turret.