How to Make a Homemade Reloading Press

By Rose Wright

Updated July 21, 2017

Making your own homemade reloading press enables you to manufacture precision, custom-made cartridges cheaply. A perfect reloading press that satisfies your exact specifications may not be available locally. Having cartridges that conform to your gun ensures safety and longer durability. Simple techniques and materials are applicable in making a fully functioning reloader.

Purchase a carbide coated die and cartridge holder from an ammunition or reloading kit store, and buy an oval gear lever handle from an automobile spare parts shop. Gather your electric drill, thread borer, thin steel rod, a standard G-clamp, screws, 4-inch linkages and bolts.

Cut a 1/2-inch steel rod to measure 1 foot. Thread both ends and screw in an oval knob gear lever handle. Fix the remaining end near the top of the threaded 1/2-inch-thick steel triangular plate measuring 3 inches at the base and 2.5 inches height. Drill and thread two holes on either side of the base of the triangular plate. Fix in a forked linkage rod and secure it in place using bolts.

Remove the screw rod from a standard G-clamp and replace it with an unthreaded steel rod. Screw in a shell holder to the tip of this rod. Drill the top plate of the clamp vertically such so the hole conforms to the threaded hole. Fit in a “die” snugly ensuring the shell holder is at tandem with the die. This forms a single stage reloading press frame.

Drill and thread holes on either side of the base of the G-clamp. Attach the linkage’s remaining end to the holes and secure with screws. Pull the lever such that it is 80 degrees to the shell holder’s rod and place it against the rod then mark the spot. Cut the rod at this spot and thread it.

Insert a nut that fits into the cartridge holder’s thread and weld it to a small firm hinge. Fit the welded nut to the threaded part of the rod. Weld the remaining part of the hinge to the base of the triangle to complete the lever-linkage and the cartridge holder’s rod connections.

Test its torque by placing a cartridge in the cartridge holder and press the lever down. The die should cover the cartridge giving the lever some more room to squeeze further.

Items you will need

  • Carbide coated die

  • Cartridge

  • Oval gear lever handle

  • Electric drill

  • Thread borer

  • Steel rod

  • G-clamp

  • Screws

  • 4-inch linkages

  • Bolts

  • Wrenches, assorted size