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The short answer, Yes, you do need some equipment, but not a shop-full.

The classic "starter kit" for reloading used to be the LEE LOADER. To me it is too basic, and once you graduate to more and better equipment you are left with junk to sell on Ebay. It is still available, but I don't recommend it.

What I'd recommend is the LEE HAND PRESS kit, and a 3-die set of carbide dies. The only other essentiall item is a powder scale.

http://www.leeprecision.com/cgi/catalog/browse.cgi?1223261025.1978=/html/catalog/rlpress2.html#offer

All you need to make great ammo.

Because the dies fit all regular reloading presses, you do not have to get new dies if you want to go upscale. You will always find a use for the Hand Press. The LEE Hand Press is my go-to press, even though I consider myself a fairly advanced reloader. It is compact and portable, and very compatible to apartment living, or even for motor home gypsies.

Before investing, I'd recommend reading a lot about reloading!
 

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It does depend on what sort of firearm you are loading for. If it's a revolver, you will need some way to crimp the mouth of the cases so the bullets don't fall out under recoil. If it's a rifle, and you are willing to use it as a single shot, then a punch to remove the primer and a way to seat it is all you need for black powder. BTW, you aren't going to get 40 grains of Goex in a 45 Colt case and still have room for a bullet.
 

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There is a difference between volume and weight for BP shooting.
It's always been 35gr by volume.So, a BP powder measure will work.
If you trying for 35gr by weight,then it's gonna be next to impossible to seat the bullet.
40gr even by volume,seating the bullet will require a lot of pressure.I've did a few.Plus,the bullet will deform.
Plus, a difference between the old "balloon head" and the "solid head" cases.
Back in the late 1800s,the "balloon head" cases were used.Had somewhat more powder space then now.
First of all,yes, please do a lot of reading.
There are many articles on blackpowder cartridges.
I do agree with Sir Charles.
My best to you.
 

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One .44/.45 Pyrodex pellet is 30 grains and works great in the .45 Colt behind a 180-240 grain bullet. Two work really well in the 45-70. I do not have a chronograph but they seem to do just fine. And they're quite neat & simple to load.
 

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Can you give more info on the use of Prodex pellets, sounds interesting? (in the 45/70)
 

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Below is a link to an online article about using the pyrodex pellets in metallic cartridges. And the data posted below comes from the Hodgdon website.

http://www.shootingtimes.com/ammunition/hodgdon_0728/

PYRODEX PELLETS IN METALLIC CARTRIDGES

CARTRIDGE BULLET PELLETS USED VELOCITY PRESSURE CRIMP WAD
44 Rem Mag 240 SWC 1 - Pyrodex Pistol 1053 fps 17,100 CUP Y N
44/40 WCF 200 RNFP 1 - Pyrodex Pistol 943 fps 12,700 CUP Y N
45 Colt 230 RFNP 1 - Pyrodex Pistol 870 fps 9,600 CUP Y N
45 Colt 250 RFNP 1 - Pyrodex Pistol 787 fps 9,900 CUP Y Y
45-70 Gov. 405 RNFP 1 - 50/50 989 fps 14,100 CUP Y Y
45-70 Gov. 405 RNFP 1 - 50/50 1015 fps 14,200 CUP Y N
45-70 Gov. 405 RNFP 2 - 50/30 1270 fps 27,200 CUP Y Y
45-70 Gov. 405 RNFP 2 - Pyrodex Pistol 1231 fps 21,900 CUP Y Y
 

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Nobade said:
It does depend on what sort of firearm you are loading for. If it's a revolver, you will need some way to crimp the mouth of the cases so the bullets don't fall out under recoil. If it's a rifle, and you are willing to use it as a single shot, then a punch to remove the primer and a way to seat it is all you need for black powder. BTW, you aren't going to get 40 grains of Goex in a 45 Colt case and still have room for a bullet.
OH NO!!! Does this mean that I'm going to need to take appart all of these I have loaded???? The powder is pretty tightly compressed but 40 gr and more will fit with a 250/255 gr bullet. Burns clean (for BP) and makes the ground shake.
 

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Well, yeah, you can get that much in there if you compress it. But as far as I knew the original post was about reloading without using tools. I can't get that much in a case with my thumb pressure!

Hmmm, perhaps this thread has wandered a bit from its original intent?
 

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Would I need a special bullet and lubricant and do I need to use a wad to protect the bullet base. What about filler?
 

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You need a bullet with BP lube unless you are using the fake stuff. The 454190,452664 Lyman or 45-230-cm from RCBS will all work with correct lube. The revolver will get by with several of the market lubes that are for sale. It's when you get into rifle that it's more of a problem. You don't need a filler or wad for pistol ammo and BP loading. There are many fine books that cover this and I would suggest that you buy one before loading any ammo. The complete Blackpowder Handbook 5th edition is one by Sam Fadala, Shooting Sixguns of The Old West(my favorite) by Mike Venturino is another. Just remember that there is no coming back from the "DARKSIDE"
 

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You don't need a filler or wad for pistol ammo and BP loading.
I know this is a old post but I was looking for confirmation on what I was told long ago because I'm going to reload 45LC now as well. I was told fill the case for a light pack (no loose black powder loads) when the bullet is set, sounds like it was good advice.
 
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