best reloading manual

4 Best Reloading Manuals Reviewed – Beginners Guide to Reloading

If you have just stepped into reloading then the very first thing that anyone should suggest to you is the best reloading manual. 

This is what you need at the beginning because without knowing the proper way, you shouldn’t get into it at all. 

Since there are a bunch of reloading manuals it could be a little confusing for beginners to pick one. 

This is why we have come up with this guide where we have review 4 top reloading manuals of the market right now. 

 Best Picks for Reloading Manual

  1. Hornady 99240 Handbook 10th Edition.
  2. Berger Bullets Reloading Manual.
  3. Lyman 50th Edition Reloading Handbook.
  4. Speer Rcbs Reloading Manual.

4 Best Reloading Manuals Reviewed

 1.Hornady 99240 Handbook 10th Edition

Starting with the Hornady 99240 10th edition handbook. When it comes to reloading, Hornady is the pioneer of the industry.

They have given some of the top-notch reloading products on the market. And here the 99240 reloading manual is no different, one of the top-notch guides.

This cartridge reloading handbook is one of the most reliable books for every reloading. It has the basics for beginners and advanced information’s for the experienced.

And this makes it a suitable manual for everyone.

This one is the 10th edition and it comes with more than 1000 pages which has loading techniques, bullet information, and reloading data.

It has a lineup for expanded data of a different range of powders, calibers, and bullets compared to the 9th edition.

It is two-part in this book, the reloading theory and mixture of reloading data. However, there are some portions that seem to be a little outdated.

There is a how-to section for the newbies which is excellent. Effortless to understand.

According to a user, the best part of this manual is the reloading process information. And the safety precaution guide.

Overall, this is a very well-structured and easy-to-read reloading manual. The explanations of the terminal, external and internal ballistics are very easy to understand.

Go for this reloading manual if you are experienced. Whoever has their basics cleared will find this manual pretty effective. We wouldn’t suggest this for beginners since there are some intro portions that are outdated.

2.Berger Bullets Reloading Manual

This Berger Bullet reloading manual was published in 2017 and it is the 1st edition. This manual comes with around 829 pages and the information is highly reliable.

And why won’t it be reliable, Berger Bullets are one of the market’s leading brands, they know how to make their consumers happy.

This book covers more than 70 highly popular centerfire rifle cartridges. Not only that, this book comes with technical articles as well which were written by some of the experienced vets such as Walt Berger.

You will see a section called Handloading basics which covers most of the information that new shooters will require.

If you are into biography reading then this manual might be pretty fun for you, since it comes with the biography of Walt Berger.

For the new shooters, it could be a good catch since the introduction is great and detailed. However, in some subjects, they didn’t go deep which is a minus point for this manual.

One more thing that you need to know, there isn’t any load data above .30caliber. So if you are looking for a manual on large caliber rounds, then this isn’t for you.

3.Lyman 50th Edition Reloading Handbook

Lyman is another top-notch manufacturer that is leading the market right now. And now we are looking for a manual from them, the Lyman reloading handbook 50th edition.

The way they have designed this manual is suitable for both beginners and advanced. Reloading with accuracy, Case preparations, and use of ballistics, everything is written in detail.

One section of this book covers a large range of bullets from Hornady, Sierra, Remington, Swift, Speer, Winchester, and Barnes. And the cartridges that are added new to this edition are 450 Bushmaster, 300 RUM, 338 RMC, 28 Nosler, 6.5 Creedmoor, 17 Hornet, 6.5 Grendel, 300 AAC blackout, 50 Beowulf, and 458 SOCOM.

It has over 400 pages only on the loading data. There is a pretty good section that tells about almost all the common bullets by brands.

However, you won’t find any reload on 147 grain.

4.Speer Rcbs Reloading Manual

Well, this one is a pretty up-to-date reloading manual, the Speer RCBS reloading manual. You will get to know about almost every powder that is available in recent times in detail from this very manual.

It has around 956 pages and has detailed information about more than 120 rifle cartridges. It also has common pitfalls to loading, automated loading process, different techniques on troubleshooting, and others.

You will also get some history of the reloading which are written by some professional shooters and they are Jim Gilliland and Julie Golob.

And it also features new gold dot rifle reloading recipes.

As I said up to date, it has data for every popular round but that being said, the loading information is only for the bullets of this brand, Speer.

Do you need a Reloading Manual? 

Have you ever done reloading before? Do you have any experience in reloading? No?

Then surely you need the best reloading manual. This is the very first and most important thing you will have to do.

Not only in case of reloading, before trying anything new one should do a little study to at least know the basics.

Even if you have someone to guide but professionals still recommend getting a good reloading manual and read before jumping right in.

Not only beginners, but even professionals do also read reloading manuals. We know there a lot of ways online to get information. There are Youtube, search engines but some information is only found in dedicated books since those are written by individuals who have years of experience.

The reloading book will enable you to fine-tune your reloading process, doing things with perfection.

Benefits of Reloading Manual 

There are a lot of benefits of reading a reloading manual before getting started, here are they.

  • The very first thing you are going to get is a brief introduction to reloading. If reloading is your hobby you are going to find that super exciting.
  • You will learn about different calibers, their usage. You will also know about all the components that are needed in reloading.
  • You will learn how to prepare for reloading and do it with perfection.
  • Reloading manuals are well-navigated and all the information is in a very structured form which makes the user find the desired information effortlessly.
  • You will get to learn safe reloading recipes that you might not find in free online guides. Even if you find, that might not be 100 percent accurate. In the manual, you will get recipes that are proven since the writer has years of experience.
  • You will have trust in the process when you will be reading and learning from someone’s experience. 

Is Every Reloading Manual Same? 

No, not all the reloading manuals are the same. There are a lot of differences. The writers are different, so does the experience, process, and recipes. Apart from that, some manuals are all about the brand’s products. And some books are only loaded specifically.

Load-specific books are only focused on a single caliber type.

If you buy reloading products from Lyman, then you should choose a manual from them.

How to Choose the Best Reloading Manual? 

We have shown three factors that you will have to consider right before making a purchase decision. And these three factors will ensure that you get your hands on the ideal reloading manual. 

Expertise Level 

The first thing you will have to determine is your expertise level. Let’s break it down into two parts, beginner and Experienced.  

If you are a beginner you will have to look for a reloading manual that covers everything from the basics so that you can understand every piece. 

The book you are picking must be loaded is important data and it should have everything from the basics in good structure so that you can check and find your desired information when needed. 

Also, make sure you are picking a manual that is very easy to read and understand. 

Beginners often overlook these things which cause improper knowledge acquisition. 

In our review we have the Swift Bullet reloading and Nosler reloading manual, these books should be enough to learn the basics and smooth reloading. 

On the other hand, if you are an experienced reloader then let’s assume you the basics, so you won’t have to put much pressure on that. 

Look for a book that comes with all the safety advice and important warnings. Since you know the basics, pick a reloader that is more focused on loading rather than the basics. 

The manual should have all the recipes, a smooth process, and should be well-structured so that you can find the needed information easily. 


Here comes the most important factor, caliber variety. To satisfy your specific needs you will have to pick a manual that talks about a lot of different calibers.

Not all the manuals but some reloading manuals do talk about different caliber types, so if you the one who loves to explore different calibers then the manual can be extremely beneficial for you. 

However, one downside of these guides is they tend to go less deep on the information they feature about calibers. This happens with the manual that covers a lot of calibers. 

But some manuals cover a very small range of calibers but discuss in detail. And it would be wise to go with such a manual. 

If you are experienced that you already know that most of the reloading manuals are focused on specific brand load data. So it would be a wise decision to choose both reloading items and manual from the same brand. 

Exact data

The best reloading manual would come with data that are produced from actual tests. But there are some manuals in the market that has data copied from others. You would want to avoid such manuals. 

Unfortunately, there isn’t any effective way to determine whether a manual is copied or genuine. 

However, some manuals have multiple editions, they update the information and you can compare one edition to the older one to know whether they are genuine or the data is copied. Because tests conducted at different times will show little different data.


One manual isn’t enough 

A lot of professionals will also agree with me, one reloading manual isn’t enough. If you have just started out, then you must stick to one. 

If you start following different manuals from the very beginning you will get confused and the learning might be inefficient. 

Here we are talking about those who have passed the beginner phase. Once you have got a good hold on the basics and have done accurate reloading for a while, now it is time to explore. 

Get a couple of manuals written by different people so that you will be able to different experiences and different processes and recipes. 

Why there are a lot of Editions? 

Different manufacturers produce newer ammunitions each year in order to improve. So to make sure users cope up with the new launches they keep bringing new editions in every few years. 

In these new additions, they update the loading data, show how to load new ammunition that was launched a few months back, etc. 

However, that being said some new editions are just a change in the cover. Some editions are only a little change in the load data and other sections which adds no value. 

If this is the case then buying new editions of the reloading manual is just a waste of money. 

Which is the Best Reloading Manual for both the Beginners?

It is actually tough to point towards only one reloading manual as best, all the manuals we have listed above are highly favored by the users. And that means all of them are pretty good. 

But yet we have tried to give a specific recommendation.

For the beginners, we would suggest the Nosler reloading Manual, not only us couple of others do recommend this for the beginners. Go for the 8th edition, it is super friendly, and easy layouts and informative illustrations will make it very easy for you to get a good hold. 

Final Words

A manual that satisfies all your needs will be the best reloading manual for you. All the manuals we have listed above are satisfying lots of users’ needs and hope you will find one for you among these.

However, before you make the final decision we urge you to do some research on your own and then choose.

 Also Read: 7 Best Bullet Extractors

 Also Read: Best Electronic Powder Reloading Scale

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