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Reloading bench size / area

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I'm currently looking at setting up a little mancave space for reloading. I plan to run a 600mm deep workbench along the walls and could do with some advice regarding what sort of length of this bench I need to allocate to the reloading setup.

I'm aiming to reload for two calibres using a Hornady multi-stage press which will be permanently bolted to the bench top. I understand that these presses are intended to be fed from the LHS and their lever operating with the right hand. If the press was to be mounted near the end of the worksurface next to a wall, how much access should be left at the RHS of the press for cleaning / maintenance operations?

Really I'm only looking for guidance on the space required to actually work in and accomodate the press, as the peripherals and consumables will be stored in a steel cabinet elsewhere in the cave when not in use. Would a 1 metre length of bench be sufficient, or would more be adviseable? How big is your reloading area and how do you find it in use?

Thanks :)

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mine is 600mm deep by 2000mm long by 40mm thick with a 400mm dog leg holding  the press

I could have a bench the length of the M1 and still be in a mess

1000mm doable but obviously more the better

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You don't need much.  A clear area for loading of perhaps 600 x 600 and about the same for the press, any trimming tools etc and perhaps a shelf or two to store dies, powder and the like.  I manage with a 600 x 500 double thickness ply board with a wilson/sinclair hand lathe trimmer, Lee press and a few other tools on it.  I store it on top of my tool chest when not in use and it gets transferred to my compact workbench (1.4m x 0.6m) when I need to do brass prep.  I load in a separate draft free area.

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1000 x 600 should be enough for press and bench and to get a chair in next to it. G clamps can be used to hold priming tool and trimming tool just when you need them.

mine is also bigger than it needs to be 2000 x 620 x 40 bench set on 2 sets of draws with 2 shelves above. One has the powder dispenser on it and scales at eye level 

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Fitted my press to one of those fold down tables with a tool box for the rest of the gear on there as well. 

Fold the wing down when not in use so it sits closer into the wall. 


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I created mine inside a standard double built in wardrobe in my spare room. A piece of old kitchen worktop for the bench with my press mounted to it and a shelf above it fixed to the wall which conveniently placed my scales at eye level for reasonable “parallax free” reading.

Space underneath for a chair and room on the shelf and bench to store all the bits and bobs. Works a treat.

When I’ve finished reloading I just close the doors and it gets hidden away.

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