The 3 Best Reloading Benches – Ideas & Reviews 2024

best reloading bench, reloading bench ideas

Photo by M01229 / CC BY

A reloading bench can be as uninspiring as a piece of wood laid over two sawhorses or it can be a professionally built, rugged piece of furniture that doesn’t detract from the look of your gunroom or garage. It is these we are looking at today, because quite frankly benches over sawhorses are both boring and ugly. Your reloading setup deserves better, and a nicely laid out bench can improve productivity and make your spouse less likely to complain about ugly furniture inside the home.

A good reloading bench can be as simple as a purpose built stand for your press, or as complex as a multi-shelved unit suitable for mounting your press, and storing all the myriads of other assorted reloading paraphernalia that is required for good reloading.

Either way, here are 3 options that can be considered the best reloading benches on the market:

Lee Precision Reloading Stand

Of course, Lee makes a reloading bench. I’m convinced that the only reason Lee doesn’t make brass, powder, primers and guns too is that they are too busy selling finely made yet simple and affordable reloading products. This is the best reloading bench on a budget (see full specs) and with an imagination. Like many Lee product ideas, it is simple, even deceptively so, but underneath its bare bones exterior lies the heart of a complete reloading bench system. At a minimum it will mount any Lee press. Expanded to all its glory, it can hold any number of bins, tubs or expanded work area. The minimalist design make it suitable for small places and can be used indoors without marring flooring. Truly a reloading bench for the person who likes to tinker a bit or who just needs the basics. There is absolutely no reason not to take a good hard look at the Lee Reloading Stand.

Lee Reloading Stand (Quick Look)

Frankford Arsenal Platinum Series Reloading Stand

If you want an easy to store reloading bench that has a generous work area and additional storage, then Franford Arsenal brings you the best reloading bench. Their aptly named platinum series reloading bench folds for easy storage, has a work area big enough to accommodate any sort of reloading setup you might have, and even comes with side mounting storage bins for additional flexibility. Reasonably priced and easy to store in a closet when not in use, this is the perfect reloading bench for apartment dwellers or others with space constraints.

Hopkins Work Bench System

If the Lee bench is for those who like to tinker, this is for people who like to actually build their reloading bench. For not much dough, you get all the metal fittings needed to build your own custom built reloading bench and storage system. If I was starting over again, I’d probably run with this bench (see full specs), as it would let me design a workspace around my specific needs. The best reloading bench for somebody handy with tools and wants to take the time to assemble their own custom rigged reloading bench, a trip to a lumber store and a saw are all you need to complete this kit and start assembling your very own custom reloading bench.

The Best Reloading Bench Ideas

The first rounds I ever reloaded were with an old school Lee press.  And I did it sitting over a paint and saw scarred table in my garage. Well, tapping together rounds the slow and hard way got old, so I put a proper reloading setup together and realized I needed more room than I had on my already crowed workbench, it was time for a proper reloading bench.

I had a few objectives in mind. It had to be roomy. I needed space for my press, powder measure and reloading blocks. To say nothing of the need to keep powder, primer, brass and bullets handy. Then. of course, there was the powder scale, case trimmer, micrometer, and all the other assorted things you need to load good ammo. All this takes up space, and it would be nice to have a couple storage bins, and space for a trash can to dump spent primers in. Oh, and of course room to easily move around and not feel cramped.

A reloading bench needs to handle the mechanical stress from the act of reloading itself. While not great, mounting your press on the wrong spot (at the moment I’m using an ancient cast iron single stage unit until I unpack my much nicer gear) runs the risk of tipping over a small or weak table as you apply downward pressure on the press. Given that, you want a purpose designed reloading stand like Lee or Frankford Arsenal offers or a sturdy enough bench to accommodate the press.

If I’m not using a powder measure, I charge my cases with a set of Lee scoops, and after knocking over an expensive pound of powder once too often, I resolved that a bigger table is better. Not only am I less likely to knock stuff over on a crowded bench, it’s easier to salvage most of the spilled powder (sadness is watching a brand new can of Blue Dot at the height of the last powder shortage spill all over a dirty floor) and it’s easier to stay organized.

Another good idea is having a hand priming tool, and so again, it’s nice to have a bit of space on the bench while operating it, although I’ve been known to prime cases while watching TV. I have the benefit of room for my bench, you may not, which makes compact options more desirable, which simply require a bit more organization.

In the end, the best reloading bench will accommodate the essentials for reloading, and leave plenty of room to work and to keep organized. It might easily break down and store under your bed or in a closet, or it might become a permanent fixture in your garage or gun room, but a good reloading bench is an absolute must, unless you want to go at it caveman style and bang rounds together with a rock and your great grandfather’s hand loading tools. Good luck, and if you want to read up more on reloading, well, we’ve got plenty of articles on the process.

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One response

  1. As im getting older im finding that I have knee problems, like bending them.

    I am over 6 ft tall and long legged.

    I am going to build a new bench that is going to be at least 4 ft tall so I can get under it
    easier and less bending

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