Redding Press Selection - courtsey Herrons

Redding Ultra Mag Press

Redding UltraMag Press
Redding UltraMag Press

Q: I bought an old Redding Ultra Mag loading press very cheaply and it seems to be strong since I can full-length magnum brass without having to apply a lot of force on the press handle. But one thing puzzles me: unlike the majority of loading presses which have the linkage attached to the lower half of the press, the Ultra Mag’s linkages are connected to the top of the press frame. Is there any explanation for this?
Frank Harmon

A: The Redding Ultra Mag is unconventional, using a long-link compound-leverage system connected to the top of the press frame. This is claimed to allow the handloader to apply tonnes of pressure without the usual concern about press frame deflection which can cause misalignment. The system is attached to a “C”-type frame with four bolt slots for bench mounting. Spent primers are collected in the hollow ram and the Ultra Mag also features a priming arm that swings into position during the ram stroke and flips out of the way when not in use. It accomplishes primer seating at the end of the ram stroke for maximum sensitivity at the lowest possible leverage. The frame opening is 4-3/4″ and it weighs a whopping 23lbs 6oz. From memory it was introduced in 1983 and I reviewed one in 1984. A kit was available with shellholder and a set of Redding AA dies. You got a good buy.




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Nick Harvey

The late Nick Harvey (1931-2024) was one of the world's most experienced and knowledgeable gun writers, a true legend of the business. He wrote about firearms and hunting for about 70 years, published many books and uncounted articles, and travelled the world to hunt and shoot. His reloading manuals are highly sought after, and his knowledge of the subject was unmatched. He was Sporting Shooter's Technical Editor for almost 50 years. His work lives on here as part of his legacy to us all.