Reloading .45 ACP & 9MM cost?

I am trying to determine if reloading is more economical than just buying ammunition outright. The calibers I am using at present are .45 ACP and 9mm. I went to a gun shop to just tally up what it might cost to load rounds and did feel it was cost prohibitive to load these calibers. At least it was just as cheap to buy FMJ ammo instead of reloading. The only positive I could see in it is that it looks like it might be a fun hobby. If for that reason alone I did it I think it might be fine but was just wishing to know if reloading was more economical than buying the finished product. It seems the cost of a .45ACP runs between .30 Cents and up and a 9mm is .22 or so if you buy in the box. What is the cost of a reload round for these calibers? I am not considering the cost of the press. Just the materials needed for the actual bullet.


I have a tough decision to make. I received four responses to my question and everyone of the answers were well thought out, informative, and friendly. I wish I could choose all of them as my favorite. I do have to choose I suppose but just for all of you I thank you for your time and help. I do think the hobby aspect will greatly sway me in becoming a reloader. I will ask around to see if any of my friends reload and hopefully get some hands on. The gun shop owner I buy my guns at does not reload. Might be a good thing to instruct people on, especially with the feeding frenzy going on. If the majority of Americans support the gun ban why are the guns flying off the shelves? Who is buying them?

7 Answers

  • 8 years ago
    Favorite Answer


    I reload the 9mm, 45 ACP and .223 Rem. For FMJ, I find the 9mm and .223 Rem to be 75% of the factory ammo while 45 ACP is close to 50%. But for hollow-points and soft-points, it's way cheaper than those.

    The advantage for reloading is NOT the cost -- since the cost may even be more if you account for your time. The advantage is the increased accuracy of your shots.


    I suggest starting out with the 45 ACP (since it will give you more cost savings). Buy a SINGLE-stage press with 45 ACP dies (I prefer Lee's). Then buy some powder (I prefer WSF), some primers (I prefer CCI), 100-200 cases, 100 Winchester HP or FMJ's, 100 Remington HP or FMJ's then start slow.

    Document every stage of your process, e.g., these 10 cartridges use CCI primer, 235-gr Win HP, and xxx gr WSF; while these use Winchester primers, 185-gr Rem HP, and yyy gr Longshot powder.


    Observe if you get better accuracy vs. factory ammo (by using a bench rest). See if your gun prefers certain components.

    At the very worst, if you decide reloading is NOT worth it, you will end up with 200 backup HP cartridges; and you can resell the (barely-used) dies and press at eBay for up to 75-90% of cost.

    Good Luck!


    Source(s): . Don't use lead! In some ranges, these bullets are NOT allowed. If you want softer bullets, use the Rainier Ballistics bullets. They are almost as soft as lead but completely copper coated. Reduces lead vapors by as much as 95%. No lead fouling of barrel. .
  • 4 years ago

    Reloading 45

  • 5 years ago

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    Reloading .45 ACP & 9MM cost?

    I am trying to determine if reloading is more economical than just buying ammunition outright. The calibers I am using at present are .45 ACP and 9mm. I went to a gun shop to just tally up what it might cost to load rounds and did feel it was cost prohibitive to load these calibers. At least it was...

    Source(s): reloading 45 acp 9mm cost:
  • Andy
    Lv 7
    8 years ago

    You have to add up your component costs. For example I buy a lot of Rainier bullets. They cost about $130.00 per thousand for 200 gr .45 FMJ. Primers are around $30.00 per thousand. Powder is about $28.00 a pound. I order my stuff online so I pay a $28.00 hazmat fee for shipping. For economy, I buy powder by the 8 lb can and primers I usually get at least 5000. With shipping lets call it $250.00(that's for a pound of powder and 1000 primers). With a .45 acp load of about 6.9 grains of Herco you should get a thousand rounds from a pound of powder. The problem is as of right now many of the online suppliers I use are out of stock on components. Hopefully that will change when the frenzy ends. I'm glad I ordered a bunch of stuff just before things got crazy. It will be quite a while before you see any savings due to buying the equipment. It is a fun hobby. I use it for stress relief. The action of reloading seems to clear my brain of needless crap and helps me relax. But it requires strict attention to detail so you don't injure or kill yourself. Get a manual or two and read the reloading process carefully. If you know a friend that reloads get him to give you some instruction.

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  • Mr.357
    Lv 7
    8 years ago

    You can save money on reloading .45 ACP, but 9mm is a loss leader for most manufacturers. I do reload .223, but it costs me more than cheap ammo. With the reloads, my son can get touching bullet holes at 100 yds with his rifle and I can get head shots on rabbits to at least 190 yds. The last time that I calculated the cost of .223, factory cost $4.99/20 and it cost me $6.23/20, not counting the cost of brass.

  • 8 years ago

    It used to be quite a bit less cost if you reloaded. Not so, so much these days since the cost of components has gotten very high. Here is how we have to do it today. First find a darn good supplier. Then you must buy larger quantities of each component.

    The most advantage to reloading is that reloads are normally intended for use at the range shooting targets. There is NO REASON to run hot loads like factory ammo. This saves allot of wear on your guns. ALSO to me I would rather run only lead bullets in the majority of my practice and target shooting. Copper jackets do put allot more wear on the rifling in the barrel then lead. It is also much easier to remove lead then copper fouling.

    Lastly, by making loads more consistent then factory loads you have better quality and higher accuracy results with handloads. Not so much so of course with handguns, but absolutely certainly with rifle loads. For myself it is just nice not to have to run to the store to pick up more ammo if I want to shoot, just make some and off I go.

  • rick
    Lv 6
    8 years ago

    I find that for practise loads you may save 5 bucks a 100 if you already have the brass. For the two calibars you are talking about. If you have to buy the brass it cost more to reload them. I also perfer fmj amo for these two cal. lead amo seems to make a semi dirty quickly do to the leading. Now for my home protection Hollow point ammo I do reload, Because these rds are about a buck a piece 20 to $25 a box of 25. Now it is worth it though when I reload my 44 mag357 or 454 casaul. I save over 10 bucks a box of 25 on the 454 close to the same on 44mag, and 5 bucks on the 357. Pluss these guns a revolvers and the brass is easy to save. You can spend a lot of time looking for your brass shooting a semi.

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