Reloading, Nalgene bottle, vacuum sealing, Carharts

Been busy loading 9mm for the girlfriend. She’s burning up about 300~ rounds a week in practice and doing it on a single stage press is out of the question, and even on the Dillon 550 it still takes a bit of time. The solution, as mentioned earlier, was to acquire a Dillon Super 1050…in addition to pistol calibers it’ll do anything .30-06 length or shorter, which means I can set it up to not only crank out .223 but also .308.

Anyway, she managed to purchase:
8# of Universal Clays for $86 ($10.75 per pound)
5m Win SP primers for $75.55 ($15.51 per 1000)
5m 115 gr. FMJ bullets for $191.50 ($38.30 per 1000)
Brass is essentially free since I have gobs of it sitting here.

Before you ask, she got this stuff at the local ammo remanufacturing facility. Strictly a local thing.

Since we’re using 5.0 grains of powder, that’s about 1400 rounds per pound. In short, we’re looking at around $63.03 per 1000 rounds. Of course, 9mm is pretty cheap these days so the savings realized are less than, say, .45 ACP or .44 mag. Nonetheless, the Dillon 1050 is still an excellent purchase because it will be used on some of those higher dollar cartridges. Should be able to put together .45 ACP FMJ for around $5.95 per box of 50. And .357 Mag JHP for around $4.38 per 50. Naturally, that gets stretched if we switch from jacketed to cast bullets. The .38 Special, for example, with a 150 gr. LRN would run around $3.31 per box of 50. (All of these prices, by the way, assume reloading fired brass that you’ve already been saving.)

So, while the 1050 was a hideous up-front expense ($1500~), it should be a smart long-term investment just from the amount of money it saves on ammo. Also, its nice to be able to crank out lotsa ammo in a short amount of time and sock it away in the bunker. My supply of 9mm was getting low but now Im going to be upping the quantities of everything.

One of the LMI has 16,000 pieces of .40 S&W brass he was formerly trying to load on a single-stage press (sort of a lifetime project, I guess). I told him if he’ll pop for the .40 S&W conversion kit and dies he can come by and use this thing.
Finally got around to picking up a 32 oz. Nalgene bottle to beat up. For trekking around I like the Camelbaks but for short jaunts the bottle is pretty good. Also, for small things that need to be protected from damage and moisture, they make decent little drysafes for all the little incidentals (esp. electronic incidentals) that you want to keep dry and protected.
Went to CostCo last week and picked up some chicken. The boneless, skinless breasts are individually vacuum sealed and have the date stamped on them, making them soooooo perfect for the deep freeze. That’s how meat should be packaged, my friend. As an aside, if you haven’t gotten a vacuum sealer to use to take advantage of bulk purchases and sales of meat, you really should. Like many things, there is an upfront cost that can be a little intimidating but it literally does ‘pay for itself’. Example – ground beef is usually $2.99 a pound. I’ve mentioned this before, right? When its remaindered, the price drops to $1.69 a pound. This means each pound is saving me $1.30. Without the vacuum sealer, I’d not be able to store the meat for long term and would have to buy it on, generally, an ‘as needed’ basis. With the vacuum sealer I buy ten pounds and I’ve saved $13.00. After around 100# of meat, the thing has paid for itself…assuming I don’t get any even better deals. Point is, you have to be able to look past those initial startup costs and do the math. Yeah, youre gonna have to cough up $100+ upfront, but it really does turn out to be worth it in the not-so-long run.
I’ve been wearing Carhart work dungarees lately and have been very pleased with them. They are stoutly built, reinforced, comfy, look like they’ll last forever, and come in a nice subdued olive-green color. I recommend them highly if youre looking for a pair of pants that can shrug off the abuse that would normally kill a pair of jeans. Not cheap at around $40~ a pair, but I would bet they’ll outlast a pair of jeans under the same circumstances. Only drawback – theyre a bit heavy, but like most forms of armour that’s the tradeoff.

8 thoughts on “Reloading, Nalgene bottle, vacuum sealing, Carharts

  1. The WSJ had an article on chicken today. There’s a glut in the market at the moment, but very little of the price savings is being passed on to the retail level. The prices processors charge for chicken breasts, for example, have fallen 24% in the last year while the prices shoppers pay have only dropped 1%. Sounds like some price gouging by grocery stores…

    If you have a local remanufacturing facility (ammo, not chicken ;), can’t you already get pretty good prices given you don’t have to pay for shipping?

  2. Also, for bigger dry safes, you can use both PVC and ABS pipe and fittings and make your own. The drain pipe fittings have screw-on caps that are liquid-tight. Of course, for really long-time storage, you can just glue them together and figure on sawing them apart.

  3. carharts

    also make a very tough workjacket, durable shirts, and did make a tough workbag. takes a long time to saften the pants up. worth the price to stock up a few extra pairs. am storing my extra clothing in those vacuum collapsable garment bags.

    am wondering why keep burning all that ammo? expensive hobby there. Wildflower 06

  4. Re: carharts

    “am wondering why keep burning all that ammo? expensive hobby there. Wildflower 06”

    To quote the deputy in Unforgiven: “I just don’t wanna get killed for lack of shooting back.”

    That being said it looks like the Zero household has roughly the same ammo consumption rate as that of the U.S. Marine Corps. It’s a safe bet that in the event of a zombie apocalypse they will be the first ones on their block to be the last ones on their block.


  5. Using a Nalgene as a dry-safe is a really cool idea. However, for drinking, I tend to reuse PET bottles. Specifically, I like the Gatorade quart and half-gallon bottles, they’re cheaper than a Nalgene and I can just toss ’em when they get too funky.

    I’ve got some Carhartt jeans that I quite like and I wonder if they’re the ones that you’re referring to you. They’re made like carpenter pants with a tool pocket and a hammer loop and the front of legs have two layers of denim. They once saved my leg from a nasty burn with an oxy-acetylene torch. I noticed a warm sensation, turned off my torch and then patted out the fire on my leg. The top layer was burned through but the bottom layer and my leg were just fine.

    If you know the style and the right size, factory seconds can be found on ebay quite cheaply. They’re new, generally with some sort of undetectable flaw.

  6. They’re made like carpenter pants with a tool pocket and a hammer loop and the front of legs have two layers of denim.

    Thems the ones. I may buy five more pair and toss all my jeans.

  7. Re: carharts

    no wonder the zombies been buying protection vests. Wildflower 06

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