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on November 30, 2011
Mr. Sweeney is a prolific writer who specializes in handguns and reloading. This book is a synopsis of his many articles pertaining to the special considerations pertaining to reloading for handguns. While it is not exactly a "step-by-step" guide that will hold a new reloader by the hand, it does cover the fundamentals of producing safe, reliable ammunition. The first part of this book covers the process in a depth that the handgun reloader will find useful. It provides greater depth than other more generalized books aimed at the beginner which also cover rifle and shotgun reloading. By limiting the scope to handguns, both beginners and more advanced reloaders will benefit from his experience and advice.

The second part examines the most common handgun cartridges reloaded today. While the steps to reload them might be similar, each one has special characteristics that must be considered by the conscientious reloader. For example, the vagaries of the 357 Sig are very different from the characteristics of the 45 ACP.

If I were to offer one criticism, it is that while he is generous with his coverage of cartridges and different bullets, he is somewhat skimpy in his treatment of gunpowder. Specifically, while he goes into detail matching the most suitable bullet for a given task in a specific caliber, he doesn't provide the same insights into powder selection. This would have been of substantial interest to me and the cursory treatment of the subject left me wanting.

All told, Mr. Sweeney's experience and conversational style make this an enjoyable and informative reference. I would recommend it highly.
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on January 20, 2013
This book is for beginners...real beginners. I am not an expert in reloading by any means. As a matter of fact, I have been reloading for only one year, yet even to me this book is pretty elementary. The book provides an introduction to reloading breaking down by components, case, primers,...etc. It is a good book for somebody looking into reloading and want to get an idea (even in this I would not consider this book to be the best resource either), not someone who has some idea (20% or more) about reloading. The second half of the book discusses different pistol calibers such as the 9MM, 10MM, 40 S&W,...etc (dedicating a chapter to every caliber, so if this caliber does not interest you, you've basically lost that chapter in the book. If there are-as in my case- more than one caliber that are irrelevant to you, a big portion of the book is then absolutely irrelevant to you in that part). It also has loading data for the. The data is very limited compared to what you can get from a reloading manual. For instance, for a particular caliber and bullet weight (does not even mention bullet type), it lists one powder charge, while reloading manuals always list min and max loads, which provides the reloader with more options as they can start with the min load and work their way up until they get to a load that their pistol would shoot most accurately. In this manual you are given one charge only and I guess you have to live with it, or buy a reloading manual. In all cases, this book would not serve (IMO)as a reloading manual.

The book is nice to read, but you get the type of information you get from reading a magazine (as opposed to a technical book, which this one should be IMO).
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on June 23, 2012
This is a good supplement for anyone looking to follow-up to The ABC's of Reloading; there is a good balance of novice and advanced terms and techniques; I didn't have to re-read sections in order to gain understanding. I honestly feel that some of the background info is what has helped my develop accurate, and consistent loads.
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on November 5, 2012
If your a Glock owner like me who has been told over and over, Never load ammo for a Glock, read this book. I started reloading with confidence after giving this book a good read.
1000 rounds later and all is good. I now have more accurate ammo at a fraction of the coast. Thats a win win no matter what sights your looking down. Auto loader or revolver, this book is for you. Two thumbs up. Be Smart and Be Safe when it comes to firearms.
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on April 2, 2012
This book gives a general overview to reloading... Very general.
An entire half of the book is dedicated to educate the reader on the various calibers available. It has about 15 lines of load data per caliber.
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on January 5, 2015
A little disappointing. Almost every reloading manual out there focuses mainly on rifle cartridge loading (and that's understandable). I reload a lot for various caliber handguns and I take a lot of pride in my ammo, so I was hoping that this manual would provide me with some good tips and tricks for refining handgun reloads to improve quality and accuracy. With all due respect to the author (he certainly seems to know a lot about handguns), it seems that he is one of those guys who just wants to crank out as many cartridges as fast as possible. As long as they chamber, go bang and make a hole somewhere on the paper... that's good enough. He seems to scoff at things like sorting brass by headstamp and trimming cases to a uniform length as colossal wastes of time. I happen to disagree, because when I started taking time to pay attention to these little details and control as many variables as I possibly could, my groupings got considerably tighter, even with my little pocket-pistol .380 (and anyone who has ever shot a Bersa .380 knows that accuracy is not it's strong point). Don't get me wrong, the book definitely has some good info and for the price, if you reload for handguns, it should be in your library. It's just that it focuses on cranking out massive amounts of "decent" ammo, whereas I would rather load "decent" amounts of outstanding ammo.
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VINE VOICEon March 1, 2013
if you reload for handguns. this is a must for your library. it gives minimum and maximum load and ballistic data. tells what bullet from which company with which powder they used. good book
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on July 23, 2012
I have fiddled around with handloads, mostly rifle calibers, for a couple of years. I recently purchased a Ruger Blackhawk in 41 magnum and there are very few factory loads for this caliber. I found this book full of very helpful hints on reloading handgun calibers. Very useful information that is not in my other handload books. Definitely worth the price.
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on February 19, 2013
i bought this book, along with a lyman reloading manual. This book is really great for those new to reloading. Gives you info on just about everything there is to know (setting up/choosing a press, components). Has pretty much every handgun listed as well as quite a few different loading data's. Many loading manuals only have 1 or 2 brands listed, this book has some lead cast bullets, Berry's plated bullets, aswell as your typical Hornady, Speer, other more pricey bullets. I would recommend this to a beginner or even a more experienced loader
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on July 11, 2015
As others mentioned, this is not a step by step guide to reloading handgun ammunition. Rather, it covers the hows and whys of tool and component selection for handgun loading. He also spends considerable time on the hows and whys of load testing in order to find the best load for your specific gun. The second half covers specific handgun cartridges, specifically those hand gun cartridges that Mr. Sweeney loads and has considerable experience with. He goes over each one explaining the ins and outs of reloading that specific cartridge, the quirks and the pitfalls that one needs to look out for. He also lists reloading data for each cartridge. The information throughout is clear and concise and Mr. Sweeney's writing and humor is always a joy to read. Whether you're a beginner or a veteran hand loader, this book is invaluable. My only criticism concerns the reloading data given for each cartridge. To be fair, Mr. Sweeney explains that these are his loads that he has tested and used, but they require a lot of component brands and powders that the average hand loader may have no interest in such as Berry's plated bullets. Still, that is just a minor quibble for an otherwise excellent book.
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