Is two 550's worth it? [Archive] - Glock Talk

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Bayou
09-24-2011, 19:14
I have a 550 that I have been using lately for 9mm and want to start 45 and 308 soon. I have seen many posts about people having two 550's. Is the change over that bad or tedious to by a 2nd 550 to have one set up for each primer size? From my expierence which is very limited it doesn't seem to bad to switch over. A deluxe quick change is a $100 and maybe $30-40 for an additional primer assembly for a total of around $140. Another 550 would be about $326, a difference of about $186. I would be buying a deluxe quick change anyways, another 550 would save that. Whats the consensus on this

XDRoX
09-24-2011, 19:21
Personally I wouldn't run two. I'd get a 550 and a 650. And just use the 650 for the caliber that I shoot the most.

A progressive really just doesn't do it for rifle. You still have to do so much prep work a single stage is almost just as good.

Also something to consider is switching to SPP 45's.

norton
09-24-2011, 19:26
I think it depends on how many cases/bullets you have and how many rounds you will be loading.
IMO, the best bet is to load all of the cases you own in the same caliber at one time before change over. I just finished loading 600 .45 colt rounds (that's all the cases I have) and tonight changed my 550 over to 9mm. The primer change is a 5 minute job (Or less if you aren't ham fist ed like me). My dies and powder measure had to be set up from scratch. All together about a 1/2 hour job. If you have plenty of dough, buy a 2nd 550, or better yet, by more components.
If you only load 2 rounds, the 2 presses make allot of sense. Since I load more then 6 pistol rounds, the 2nd press would only save me the primer setup time.
But if you have the $, go for it.

RustyFN
09-24-2011, 19:31
I have a 550 that I have been using lately for 9mm and want to start 45 and 308 soon. I have seen many posts about people having two 550's. Is the change over that bad or tedious to by a 2nd 550 to have one set up for each primer size? From my expierence which is very limited it doesn't seem to bad to switch over. A deluxe quick change is a $100 and maybe $30-40 for an additional primer assembly for a total of around $140. Another 550 would be about $326, a difference of about $186. I would be buying a deluxe quick change anyways, another 550 would save that. Whats the consensus on this

I think the change over on the 550 is fairly easy when I switch from small to large and back. I did go with the quick change to keep from having to change over the powder measure.

fredj338
09-24-2011, 19:35
I used to run two 550s, only because I had them. One I got back from my father after he passed on a few years ago. It is very convenient to have two setup, one for small & one for large, just change the tool head & shell plate & go. If you load for a bunch of diff calibers as I do, a good way to go. Would I buy another just for that, probably not. So I sold one & financed my 650, which I just run 45acp & maybe 45colt if I get back into CAS. I still run a ss press as well. You can never have enough reloading gear.

thorn137
09-24-2011, 19:55
It seems foolish to me to purchase a 2nd press merely to save the few minutes involved in changing primer sizes, unless you need to change primer sizes several times a day and a 2nd machine would truly save some time.

thorn

Colorado4Wheel
09-24-2011, 20:57
Total waste of money, I can see if you got a smoking deal on one. Then it's a investment you can always sell later. But two at regular cost is a huge luxury.

Bayou
09-24-2011, 21:16
The more I think about it the more it seems silly. I guess I will just order some other items instead. I think I will go ahead and order the bullet tray, strong mount and empty cartridge case bin that I passed on in the begining. My needs don't require a 650 or probably won't but I find myself thinking that a 650 would be nice for a primary round. I might have to keep putting back for that.

michael e
09-24-2011, 21:24
I load 8 calibers and can't see the need for another machine. If I have enuff money to have 8 , and enought room for all of them maybe. But have way to many guns on the list infront of getting more loaders any time soon.

njl
09-24-2011, 21:49
Personally I wouldn't run two. I'd get a 550 and a 650. And just use the 650 for the caliber that I shoot the most.

A progressive really just doesn't do it for rifle. You still have to do so much prep work a single stage is almost just as good.

Also something to consider is switching to SPP 45's.

I was going to suggest that, but I haven't heard of SPP .308. I just got about 3k .45acp SPP. It's my first batch of SPP .45 brass.

I disagree on the single stage being just as good for rifle. Sure there are more steps, but it's still a big win priming, charging, seating, and crimping rifle ammo on a progressive vs a single stage.

freakshow10mm
09-24-2011, 22:16
Get a 1050 and pay the $100 for the other primer size system. Pay for the press in 3 installments of ~$500 and be done with it.

I'd rather a 1050 setup to run everything than two presses to run everything.

Jim Watson
09-25-2011, 08:34
I had two SDBs, large and small primer.
But I think it is easier to swap out primer feeds on a 550, IF you keep complete feed assemblies set up and adjusted. I would not want to change out inner tubes and bars or cups frequently.

n2extrm
09-25-2011, 08:49
Personally I wouldn't run 2 550's. The reality is it is so quick to change over a 550. Add to that the 550 needs to have the primers slide cleaned pretty regularly so you need to take it apart any way. When I had the 550 I would often take the primer slide hanging up as a chance to change what I am loading.

GioaJack
09-25-2011, 09:59
Invest the money you'd spend on an extra 550 in women... you'll get a lot more bang for your bucks and have much nicer memories when you're sitting on the porch of the nursing home.

Who the hell wants erotic memories of high primers.


Jack

ron59
09-25-2011, 11:41
I'd think of a 650 first for your high volume caliber, leaving the 550 for "other" stuff.

That's where I'll be eventually. 650 for my 9mm, 550 for .45ACP and whatever.

Bayou
09-25-2011, 12:28
Yah, I think I will wait and see about a getting a 650. I may go ahead and get the primer assembly, not sure yet but I don't even think that would be worth it since I can use that as an excuse to do a quick cleaning and just switch the tubes.

Beanie-Bean
09-25-2011, 12:48
Appreciate the feedback from everyone--I was considering another press to handle the more-frequently shot rounds, or to setup one for small primer, one for large primer.

However, after reading everyone's comments, I'll go ahead and setup the 550 for 9X19, so I can go through the exercise of swapping out from large primer to small primer.

Good to know that the primer assembly needs cleaning regularly--that'll be an excuse to swap out tubes/punches and load something else.

I'm still eyeballing another press, perhaps a 650 or an LnL--something with a casefeeder. I saw that Dillon has one for the 550, but I'm interested in something that will index the shellplate after each cycle of the handle.

The Hornady interests me, because of the bullet feeder assembly that was just recently released, but I've also seen the Mr. Bullet units in some videos, too.

Ahh....decisions, decisions.

Colorado4Wheel
09-25-2011, 16:51
The Hornady interests me, because of the bullet feeder assembly that was just recently released, but I've also seen the Mr. Bullet units in some videos, too.

Ahh....decisions, decisions.

Bullet feeders don't care what kind of press you got. As long as it takes standard dies.

Beanie-Bean
09-25-2011, 17:50
Bullet feeders don't care what kind of press you got. As long as it takes standard dies.

Thanks, C4W--I've seen Gavin (Ultimate Reloader) using the RCBS bullet feeder with an XL 650, but to me that just didn't seem right!

frankmako
09-25-2011, 18:08
i got two 550. the only reason i got the second one it was a deal on a used one. i load 6 different pistol cals on them. use one for small primmer the other one for large. the big thing is to have tool heads and powder drops for each cal.

Colorado4Wheel
09-25-2011, 18:13
Thanks, C4W--I've seen Gavin (Ultimate Reloader) using the RCBS bullet feeder with an XL 650, but to me that just didn't seem right!

Oh no, here we go again.:faint:

gwalchmai
09-25-2011, 19:20
I just have one 550 and a separate toolhead for each cartridge I load. Changing a toolhead, and the primer assy if necessary, takes me about 15 minutes because I take the time to clean the press. It could be done faster, I guess, but it's just a hobby...

Beanie-Bean
09-25-2011, 22:26
Oh no, here we go again.:faint:

Huh? I didn't mention that as a source of contention--not now, nor ever before. It was just an observation. His installation has the 650 installed on the same plane as the bullet feeder. The spring going into the clear viewing tube looked to be only a certain length, and I was trying to picture how that would work if the Dillon press were mounted on a strong mount which places the press at a higher level, that's all.

Perhaps it was mentioned by someone else before in a different thread?

lvl1trauma
09-26-2011, 05:21
Just get one 550. Put your money on components and shooting.

I agree. The primer system does need to be cleaned more often than I would like but that gives me a chance to clean it some. It seems to be worse with small primers. Don't know why. I think it could be a little better system. Right now I am loading some .40's and those small primers getting hung up in there are driving me nuts. The large primers aren't a problem.

Colorado4Wheel
09-26-2011, 05:44
Just get one 550. Put your money on components and shooting.

I agree. The primer system does need to be cleaned more often than I would like but that gives me a chance to clean it some. It seems to be worse with small primers. Don't know why. I think it could be a little better system. Right now I am loading some .40's and those small primers getting hung up in there are driving me nuts. The large primers aren't a problem.

Then obviously there is something wrong with the SP system. Polish the slider as a first step (600grit wet/dry paper). Also make sure you have the entire setup aligned when you tighten the two bolts. Basically push forward to prime with the nuts just a little loose. Then tighten the bolts. Make sure is moves smoothly before you tighten them completely.

Colorado4Wheel
09-26-2011, 05:46
Perhaps it was mentioned by someone else before in a different thread?

Yep...

Beanie-Bean
09-26-2011, 06:52
OK. Sorry--I didn't mean to rehash a previously-discussed topic. I'll have a look through the archives for additional information.

Meanwhile, my left thumb and index finger are doing just fine seating bullets at Station #3 :)

Thanks!

Colorado4Wheel
09-26-2011, 07:11
Just some guy who wasted everyones time. It's not worth talking about.

scattershot
09-26-2011, 08:47
My 550 came with both primer arms, and it takes only seconds to change them. I keep separate toolheads, though, so I can slip one out and put another one in ready to go. It takes more time to tell it than to do it, BTW.I think I'd put the money into a new gun, if it was me.

njl
09-27-2011, 08:11
Just get one 550. Put your money on components and shooting.

I agree. The primer system does need to be cleaned more often than I would like but that gives me a chance to clean it some. It seems to be worse with small primers. Don't know why. I think it could be a little better system. Right now I am loading some .40's and those small primers getting hung up in there are driving me nuts. The large primers aren't a problem.


Maybe the bottom of your small primer slide isn't as smooth as the large one. I keep a scotchbrite pad by the press and every so often when I'm changing slides or just taking it apart for cleaning, I'll go at it with the scotchbrite and make sure its smooth.

I'd say at least with the 550, this makes having two presses (a large primer one and a small primer one) a false economy. You're going to have to remove the priming system every so often anyway (probably every thousand rounds or so) for cleaning, so unless you want to frequently load small batches of different primer sized ammo, you're not really saving yourself any time having a second 550.

gwalchmai
09-27-2011, 08:57
Maybe the bottom of your small primer slide isn't as smooth as the large one. I keep a scotchbrite pad by the press and every so often when I'm changing slides or just taking it apart for cleaning, I'll go at it with the scotchbrite and make sure its smooth.Cleaning the slide and bearing surface with an alcohol soaked rag every hundred primers made a big difference for me, and it just takes a second.

njl
09-27-2011, 09:01
Cleaning the slide and bearing surface with an alcohol soaked rag every hundred primers made a big difference for me, and it just takes a second.

You take your priming system apart for cleaning every hundred rounds? If I had to do that, I'd be on the phone with Dillon.

gwalchmai
09-27-2011, 09:41
You take your priming system apart for cleaning every hundred rounds? If I had to do that, I'd be on the phone with Dillon.Nope. I just wipe down the slide and bearing surface so the toxic crud doesn't build up.

fredj338
09-27-2011, 10:44
Just get one 550. Put your money on components and shooting.

I agree. The primer system does need to be cleaned more often than I would like but that gives me a chance to clean it some. It seems to be worse with small primers. Don't know why. I think it could be a little better system. Right now I am loading some .40's and those small primers getting hung up in there are driving me nuts. The large primers aren't a problem.

All the 550 primer system needs is a way to channel the crud from decapping away from the slide area. A series of holes down the middle would help w/ that. The 650 decaps prior to reaching the primer stn, helps a lot keeping things clean. So I clean the 550 slide about every 500rds or when it gets sticky.

dihnen
09-27-2011, 19:07
Take a look at the RCBS Pro 2000. It was designed from the ground up to have the quickest and most economical caliber changes of any quality press out there. I change between 9mm, 38sp, and 45 ACP frequently each month and the total time for changeover is less than 5 minutes, including the time to change from small primers to large.

thorn137
09-29-2011, 16:21
I'm fairly sure I could change from 9mm to 44mag on a LNL-AP in under 2 mins if I had to... the longest part of the process is simply unscrewing the little bolt that inserts the primer and putting the other one it. Fairly easy to keep clean as well; i just use a small paintbrush to sweep the channel clear every 100 rounds or so.

thorn

noylj
10-02-2011, 23:10
Rifle: Forster Co-Ax or Lee Classic Turret.
You can load on a progressive, but you either can not do all the case checks you might want or you pulling every cases from the shellplate at least once for inspection/prep.

Handgun: 550 only if you like NOT having auto-index and are happy with ONLY 4 stations. I don't. You do. Two presses at least saves the time of switching from one size primer to the other.
The world of progressive presses that I have found that I like are:
Hornady L-N-L AP, no case feeder needed
Dillon 650, case feeder a requirement
Dillon 1050: that says it all.

Sigma40sw
10-03-2011, 20:20
I have read through all the posts. I use two 550's with the one small & one large primer setup. No one has mentioned how nice it is to have spare parts to fix their broken 550 when they need ammo for the match in the morning :<) Dillon's is good getting you replacement parts,but for me it's a week before they show up.
BTW I have a bucket with 5 broken bell cranks (parts that connects the handle to the ram) from both my 550's. Dillon replaces them,but they always break when I need them most.

TonyT
10-06-2011, 09:25
I have a 550 that I have been using lately for 9mm and want to start 45 and 308 soon. I have seen many posts about people having two 550's. Is the change over that bad or tedious to by a 2nd 550 to have one set up for each primer size? From my expierence which is very limited it doesn't seem to bad to switch over. A deluxe quick change is a $100 and maybe $30-40 for an additional primer assembly for a total of around $140. Another 550 would be about $326, a difference of about $186. I would be buying a deluxe quick change anyways, another 550 would save that. Whats the consensus on this
I would stay with one 550. It takes so little time to change over form small to large primers that the cost and space taken up by the second 550 would not be an advantage (unless you have lots of spoare cash and space).

Bayou
10-06-2011, 18:45
I'm gonna stick with one 550 and just go with it.