HANDS-ON: RCBS Turret Press

The RCBS Turret Press is a 6-station cast iron press with on-press priming. Interested to see the press in action? That’s what we’ll cover in this story!



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About the RCBS Turret Press

From the Product Page:

The RCBS Turret Press offers simple operation—no complex or automated processes. Reloaders have complete control over every step, and the press may be operated in progressive or single-stage mode. In progressive mode, output can be increased from 50 to 200 rounds per hour. It features a rugged, cast iron frame, toggle block and turret head. The press’ heavy-duty construction minimizes springing and detent on the turret head ensures positive alignment. Note: RCBS highly recommends the optional Uniflow Powder Measure with Case Activated Linkage Kit for use on the Turret Press (sold separately).

    • Six-station turret head allows many combinations in the mounting sequence of dies
    • May be operated in progressive or single-stage mode; in progressive mode, output can be increased from 50 to 200 rounds per hour
    • Rugged, cast iron frame, toggle block and turret head
    • Standard 7/8 inch-14 threads
    • The turret head is held in place by one bolt for quick, easy changeovers
    • Turret Pin Assembly and Ball Handle Assembly may be positioned for right- or left-hand use
    • Standard Shell Holders slip into press ram and are securely held in place by a clip spring
    • Primer Plugs and Sleeves are supplied for seating large and small primers
    • Primers are seated away from stacked primers
    • Safety tube included
    • Primer Catcher keeps spent primers from falling on the floor
    • Baked epoxy finish is chip- and fade-resistant and allows for quick, easy cleaning
    • 4.75 inch window, 4.5 inch stroke

What’s in the Box

Here’s what you’ll find in the RCBS Turret box, all packed neatly with heavy-duty cardboard doubled-up packing:

  • Turret Press
  • Press Handle
  • Primer Catcher
  • Indexing Handle
  • Allen Keys
  • Primer Slider Block Assembly (with large and small primer cups/punches)
  • Primer Block Hardware
  • Primer Feed Tubes (large and small)
  • Primer Pickup Tubes (large and small)
  • Explosion shield
  • Instructions

Mounting the Press

For press mounting, there are a few different options that are straightforward to use:

  1. Bolt your press directly to your bench
  2. Use the RCBS Accessory Base Plate
  3. Inline Fabrication Ultramount: Dedicated Ultramount, or Quick Change Ultramount

As you can see above, I use the Quick Change Ultramount system at Ultimate Reloader, and in this case I ordered a #11 quick change top plate, and was off and running!

Assembling the Press

The press comes with the Turret Head already installed. There are only a few easy steps for press assembly:

  1. Install the primer slider assembly on the press (two screws)
  2. Install the primer drop tube and explosion shield
  3. Clip in the primer catcher
  4. Screw in the press handle (left or right handed option)

Above: mounting the primer slider assembly.

Above: 223 Shellholder snapped into place


Above: RCBS 223 Small Base sizer and RCBS 223 seater dies installed.

Conducting a .223 Functionality Test

For my initial testing with the RCBS Turret Press, I performed the following operations:

  1. Small-base sizing and de-priming once-fired 223 case
  2. Priming 223 case
  3. Seating bullets in 223 case

The press operated well, and I really liked the feel of the on-press priming. This setup used two out of six total stations. This means you can have three rifle setups like this on a single turret head.

I should note, RCBS offers separate turret heads that can be swapped in about 1-2 minutes. This means you can have as many dedicated reloading setups as needed, and can quickly change between setups in separate turret heads.

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