The Lee Pro is a great press for the money and when I had first got mine I also wanted to take the hammer to it. I actually had it boxed up ready to go back till I cooled down and decided to give it a second try. I have been reloading for 30 years and it was instantly frustrating. Having said that, after I remounted it and took my time with it I got it working after about a half hour, here are some experiences.
Case feeding and using the collator : brilliant idea and works great, beats the snot out of the complicated power case feeder for the rcbs at a cost of almost nothing if you ever had to replace it. You can fill the tube feeder in about 30 seconds. Occasionally one will go in upside down and that generally happens from dumping them in. No problem just pull it out when it tries to feed it.
Powder measure: Kind of cheaply made but it works pretty flawless. The method of preventing a charge with no case in is pretty ingenious. Almost impossible to double charge a case but it could happen if you are figgiding with the primer system and run the press up and down far enough to trigger it. I have had it occasionally drop a light load but overall is dependable. As said check the charge with the powder you are using to verify it drops the correct charge.
Priming system: This is the trouble spot on the machine. Get it adjusted right and your in for a good time but get it out of whack and prepare to pick the pieces up after smashing it into a thousand pieces. The key here is clean the trough on a regular basis with compressed air as mentioned. Another key item is once the primer tray is empty and you have loaded enough to clear the throat, don't go any farther! Refill the tray! After this point there is not enough wieght pushing the primers down and I guarantee it will jam or malfunction. Normally it manages to flip a primer on its side and jam the shell plate. It's not unusually for this to throw the plate out of time and you may very well have to retime it using the screw in the bottom of the carrier. Key is to keep clean and full. When seating a primer on the down stroke, don't force it, gently begin the seating process and if it doesn't feel right STOP!
Quite often what will cause a primer to not wanna seat is either it is a Lake City cartridge with the crimp not removed or powder or crap has gotten packed into the groove of the shell plate not allowing the shell to fit all the way back into the groove. If necessary, take a pin and clean the shell plate groove. Also keep an eye on the retainer spring that holds the shell into the groove. If not tensioned, bend it till it does.
Bullet seating station: If your trying to use the bullet feeder system my suggestion is THROW IT AWAY! LOL, this is an epic fail and you will in my opinion spend more time trying to make this work than the reward for using it. The fingers get broken very easily and you have to be extra careful when there is not a shell in the station which is the first two rotations. If the bullet falls out of the feeder, you just broke the fingers! At $10 per set you will go broke in the next 10 minutes of trying to fix it! I hand load the bullet for reliability and also the ability to verify there is a powder charge in the shell casing before seating. Here is a caution if loading a shell with a full powder charge, the snap of the shellplate seating will bounce powder out of the casing and this will eventually find its way into the grooves of the shell plate increasing your chances of malfunction. I have gotten into the habit of as the shell casing comes around placing my finger over the top of the casing till it has snapped into place, I verify the charge looks right set the bullet and proceed.
Using these guidelines I easily load a round every 12 seconds taking my time to ensure the primer is seating correctly. That is an easy 6 boxes an hour. I have done many more per hour but this is taking into consideration the occasional issues that arise.
I have no issues using ANY primer, the key is DO NOT force a seating! IF it don't feel right STOP!
If you want to do different calibers ( I do 4 different ones) its best to buy the complete shell plate carrier, a turret with the dies set up and a powder measure for each caliber so you don't have to switch it out. It does add up as each caliber will cost you about $100 each plus the dies but your probably already have those.
Last edited by G19lover; 12-25-2009 at 19:10..