bonanza co-ax press

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  • Last Post 08 October 2022
porthos posted this 18 August 2022

looking at an older bonanza co-ax press. looks as new. $250.00  +-.  are they the same as the current forester; better/worse, opions??

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Bud Hyett posted this 18 August 2022

The big change is the name, Forster-Appelt bought Bonanza. The Bonanza press and dies are the same, just a new name.

I’ve had good service from Forster when ordering parts. Be careful, the springs in the shell plate like to jump into unknown spots when changing the jaws. Forster now offers a conversion plate to use RCBS shell holders, something I would not buy.

My Bonanza Co-Ax press is one of the best buys in my reloading history, I’ve had it for three decades. This press helped eliminate flyers. I still have my RCBS JR press which I’ve had for five decades, (I now mostly use it for forming cases and depriming cases before cleaning.)  

Farm boy from Illinois, living in the magical Pacific Northwest

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Ross Smith posted this 19 August 2022

They don’t have the power of an rcbs rock chucker. So if you need to make cases from other cases you’ll also need another press. I sold my Forster.

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Pentz posted this 19 August 2022

Love my co-ax; no more flying spent primers, no more shellholder swapping.  Retired my RCBS to forming large BP cases.

Mike B.

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Ken Campbell Iowa posted this 19 August 2022

a slight nuisance with the Forster ... i like to prime with it, like the feel ... but the primer shelholders are not quite the same as the popular Lee ... RCBS ...  these primimg holders are not the universal sizing holders, these go into the top of the press.  so you have to buy these fairrly expensive Forster holders just to prime on the press.

speaking of priming, i also like the Lee priming die that screws into a regular die station in a press.

i like to feel a primer hit bottom ...  

i love my Forster/Bonanza ... but

best buy is probably the Lee Classic Cast ... Turret or single.  

 

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WINCHESTER 71 posted this 22 August 2022

I have 3 right now........1 brown and two red only use two but I keep getting them from old hunting clients and am getting quite a pile of reloading equipment but these are great presses and don't have to deal with shell holders...buy it once and use it forever.........

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tlkeizer posted this 08 October 2022

Greetings,

I have only one loader, a Bonanza co-x I bought back in the late70's (maybe very early 80's but I think late 70's).  Only problem I ever had was self induced and minor.  Never saw a need for another press, as I don't reload fast.  Very consistent results.  Like Winchester 71 says, buy it once and use it forever.

TK

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lotech posted this 08 October 2022

I've had an RCBS Big Max and Redding Ultra Mag for many years and I'd probably use one of these for case-forming or other heavy duty work, more out of habit rather than considering the Co-Ax a weaker press. I no longer do heavy case forming and use a Co-Ax for just about all rifle cartridge loading, just as I've done for well over thirty years. 

There are a couple of things (like using a file-type trim die or collet style bullet puller) better left to other presses, but for most work the Co-Ax is an excellent tool. I remember reading years ago where the company tested the Co-Ax by resizing unlubed .300 H&H Magnum brass. I wouldn't try that, but it's certainly a testimony as to strength. 

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