Precision reloading for your buddies...... What's your time worth??

Feb 12, 2017
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Michigan
#1
Just curious if any of you guys load for your friends and what is a fair price to charge? I now load 28 nos for one friend and had another ask to load 338 lapua. I am annealing each load on my AMP, dropping powder with the Auto Throw/Trickler, trimming and chamfering on a Giraud and providing all of the components. I know that Copper Creek charges like $5 + per round for these. What do you guys think is fair with everything I have invested, including the time?
 

1500varmint

New Hide Member
Aug 13, 2018
27
5
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#5
Hell no.
And thats before you start considering liabilities.
Yeah, that's kind of where I land.

I load a lot of pistol rounds and I've had friends fromt he gun club ask me to load for them, but I pass. I absolutely offer to help them get setup for themselves, but ultimately it's not worth the time or liability for me.
 
Likes: DevilDocAZ
Feb 13, 2017
2,950
2,505
113
Camano Island, Washington
#6
Just curious if any of you guys load for your friends and what is a fair price to charge? I now load 28 nos for one friend and had another ask to load 338 lapua. I am annealing each load on my AMP, dropping powder with the Auto Throw/Trickler, trimming and chamfering on a Giraud and providing all of the components. I know that Copper Creek charges like $5 + per round for these. What do you guys think is fair with everything I have invested, including the time?
You have purchased some very spendy equipment and have spared your "friends" from having to make the same investment. If it were me, I wouldn't reload for them, due to liability reasons (per T/t/T's statement above). If you're going to go ahead and do it anyway, I wouldn't do it/go through all the hassle for any less than $1.00 per round, particularly for the .338LM. Not something you're going to get rich off of. And possibly, because you took money for it, you could be held liable, after the fact on some type of "bad news" event that your "friends" were involved in. That's also the primary reason that you should never use reloads/handloads in a C/C defensive sidearm and always use factory ammo.

Also, there are some people that initially appear as though they can be "taught", but they never really pick up the ball and run with it. Those are the ones that always seem to continue to come back to you with remedial/repetitive questions. Those are the ones I would distance myself from, reloading wise, particularly from a liability standpoint.

I/we know you are just being a "nice guy".....most of us have been there/got the T-shirt. In this day and age, you're almost better off seeking out those that are more knowledgable than you, not less. Flip side is that I'm probably guilty of being selfish, which I wouldn't really contest. I'd suggest that you give serious consideration to the liability aspect of offering "free" advice. If you think the reward outweighs the risk, wonderful, more power to you.

As a side note, I just ordered 5K rounds of 9mm once fired for $150, or $30/K, delivered. I have been picking up my brass at the range and usually shoot about 250 rounds/session. That works out to $7.50 worth of brass (raked/picked up) per session. For that kind of money, I'm no longer going to rake it up, cull/sort it, then clean it, only to get to the point where I can pull 250 rounds of once fired out of the box and throw it into the tumbler. I reload for the relaxation/enjoyment of it, not because it saves me a bunch of money. 338LM is a different story though. I'd be kind of afraid to be shooting anywhere near someone that bought a boomer like that "off the shelf" and thought they were better off by buying factory ammo. I'm thinkin' I have seen 338LM ammo for what, $5 per round ? Haysoos, 20 rounds at the range is $100 (gone......). I'd be willing to bet there are a lot of those sticks that go onto the consignment board at the local B&M gunstores with less than 200 rounds through them.
 
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Feb 12, 2017
691
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Michigan
#7
Thank you all for the insight! I guess I never really thought about the liability part of it before. I'm definitely not doing it to make money. It's just when good friends ask a favor, it's hard to say no!
 

Codiekfx400

Sergeant of the Hide
Jan 29, 2018
362
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#8
Have them come over and teach them to hand load on your equipment. If they come back more than 5 times or so they are not that interested in hand loading. Most people once they understand the process will buy their own equipment. The annealer might be the exception if they need to use that for a few years that would be fine with me.
 

mijp5

Gunny Sergeant
May 7, 2009
4,569
1,651
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#9
Just curious if any of you guys load for your friends and what is a fair price to charge? I now load 28 nos for one friend and had another ask to load 338 lapua. I am annealing each load on my AMP, dropping powder with the Auto Throw/Trickler, trimming and chamfering on a Giraud and providing all of the components. I know that Copper Creek charges like $5 + per round for these. What do you guys think is fair with everything I have invested, including the time?
If you were a real friend, you would do it all for free
 

Bradu

Full Member
Aug 24, 2011
1,864
194
63
IL
#10
As others have said, I won't load for others for liability reasons. I have taught a few people how to set up dies and reload. I even walked them through my load development process and they have had excellent results.
 
Aug 7, 2014
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Gillette, WY
#11
Just curious if any of you guys load for your friends and what is a fair price to charge? I now load 28 nos for one friend and had another ask to load 338 lapua. I am annealing each load on my AMP, dropping powder with the Auto Throw/Trickler, trimming and chamfering on a Giraud and providing all of the components. I know that Copper Creek charges like $5 + per round for these. What do you guys think is fair with everything I have invested, including the time?
Not sure if it has been mentioned, but the minute you charge you have broken he law if you care, you need a Class 6 FFL to manufacture ammo, a Class 7 may cover it.
There is always liabilities, a certain amount of common sense on both ends should ensure nothing ever happens. I have loaded ammo for friends, most likely a lack of time management on their part getting ready for a match, shit happens. But I'd just as soon not do it.
As for a liability of offering advice, unless you're telling someone to load 47gr of varget behind a 147 eld in a 6.5 creed, I wouldn't worry about that aspect, give sound advice if you are capable, if not, stay out of it. Hell, a young girl encouraged and advised her boyfriend to off himself and I think she is walking the streets, lol
It's a hell of a lot smarter just to mentor a person, if you are willing to commit, and having these guys over and powdering cases and seating their own bullets absolves you from about anything if they agree on what is being done.
EDIT: Providing the components too, I want you as a friend, they need to pay for what they use regardless of which direction you take.
 
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308pirate

Gunny Sergeant
Apr 25, 2017
3,553
990
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#12
First of all, I doubt any of my friends can afford my professional rate (what I earn at my day job in a year divided by 2000).

Second of all, I value my free time.

Third of all, I'm not even taking the slightest risk of being labeled as an unlicensed ammo manufacturer by the ATF. And make NO mistake, if you made even a little profit at it you are definitely asking for an ass fucking by them.

Fourth of all, I have already tried teaching a "friend" how to reload. He couldn't make a fucking decision on his own and would not leave me alone, asking questions almost every day over a couple of weeks. Buy a reloading manual and teach yourself. That's what I did.
 
Mar 26, 2006
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#14
Some of you need better "friends". LOL.

I have no problem helping some of my GOOD friends reload. And that's typically what it is, helping them learn on my equipment.

If I'm charging my friend for use of my free time to help them out...gotta wonder how good a friend I am or how good a friend they are. I hate people too much to bother with the rest of them.
 
Likes: Bradu

SLG

Gunny Sergeant
Sep 2, 2009
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#15
Maybe we all define friends a little differently.

I would have no problem teaching a friend of mine, on as many occasions as it took, to reload on their own. My friends did that for me, and continued to provide excellent info and tips long distance, when I ran into a snag or was looking for the next level.

I'm not the kind of guy who is happy at the bubba level, so I want the best training and education I can get on every topic that interests me. Fortunately, I have friends at the top of these areas, so I don't have to just buy a book and hope I get it right. However, before I bothered my friends, I bought every reloading manual at two stores near me, plus a couple online. I read them all cover to cover so that I could ask intelligent questions.

I would never consider myself an expert reloader, and in fact, do not reload much any more at all, as my time is more valuable to me, and I don't really enjoy reloading the way others seem to. I enjoy shooting, so that is what i do. However, based on my research and my friend's willingness to teach me, I was able to fairly quickly develop loads that were very precise, in multiple guns, and then continue to produce them as needed. One caliber/load/rifle was dramatically more accurate than any factory load I have every shot, and that was extremely rewarding.

In fact, so many people have helped me become what i am, that I am always happy to donate my time and effort to helping others improve, especially my friends.
 
Nov 12, 2007
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Black Hills, SD
#16
timely question; I spent most of today loading .223 ammo for a friend that comes up to from TX to shoot prairie dogs for a week (he knows how to reload, I just find good deals on bullets/primers/powder). I came to the conclusion I'm gonna drain the swamp and he can go back to reloading his own. I think a person appreciates things more if they have some of their own sweat equity invested = no more "ammo welfare"
 

Sheldon N

Blind Squirrel Finds a Nut
Sep 24, 2014
2,642
504
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Pacific Northwest
#17
If they are a good enough friend for me to want to load for them, they are a good enough friend for them to come over and bring booze and hang out and do it together. I’ll drink, they can load. 😀
 
Likes: Milo 2.5
Jul 11, 2012
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#18
Want to shoot my factory ammo I bought? Sure! Shoot as much as you’d like.

Want to shoot my ammo that I hand loaded? Here’s 2 rounds, make them count...

And that’s for friends who I’ve known for 15 years.
 
Nov 8, 2013
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IL
#19
I taught a buddy to hand load a while back, he ended up buying two dillon 1050's, .223 and 9mm heads with all the trimmings and a 650xl, power trimmer etc. With a key to his reloading room out in his ac/heated pole barn. Was it worth the time....hell yes. 😁😁
 
Aug 7, 2014
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Gillette, WY
#20
The sentiment on this site yrs ago was most would never fire another's handload, lol
Like I said earlier, I have and will again, but at some point a guy needs to realize that at some point you are being taken advantage of and that is your own fault. I'm retired and get leaned on pretty hard for a lot of things, I'm free all day every day, apparently. Being as though I do not make a wage per say, my free time is not worth a lot, but then I never felt it was when I was working either, you either help someone or not.
 

spife7980

Full Member
Feb 10, 2017
3,735
764
113
TX
#21
I’ve thought about loading for a cousin. Make him buy all the equipment for his caliber which I then get to keep unless he starts loading his own at some point. He’d also buy the components.
I’m not going to monetarily put myself out but time wise... ehh. I do nothing with my life, it’ll give me something to do.

So far he hasn’t wanted to buy the dies and equipment so I haven’t yet.

I would then insist that I keep his rifle for awhile so I can do the load development on it and know exactly what’s going on.
 
Feb 12, 2017
691
194
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Michigan
#22
I would then insist that I keep his rifle for awhile so I can do the load development on it and know exactly what’s going on.
That's how I got into this in the first place. The 28 Nosler used to be mine. I sold it to my friend and he asked if I would continue loading for him. I agreed and now that I'm loading for him, some of my other friends are asking as well. You know how it goes...... "Well you're loading for him, why not me".
 
Aug 7, 2014
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Gillette, WY
#23
That's how I got into this in the first place. The 28 Nosler used to be mine. I sold it to my friend and he asked if I would continue loading for him. I agreed and now that I'm loading for him, some of my other friends are asking as well. You know how it goes...... "Well you're loading for him, why not me".
LMAO, I've been there, did the sale include free ammo for the life of the barrel?
 

TheGerman

Oberleutnant
Jan 25, 2010
3,882
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Out West
#24
Nope.

I'll teach them. Take them out shooting. Whatever.

But I'm not loading for you. Not because of the time, but because there are 10 things that can happen and 9 of them are bad; everything from they thought the loads sucked, to what the loads actually cost to what they wanted to pay for them to the gun blowing up in their face.

The risk vs reward matrix here is shit.
 
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