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Old 02-10-2011, 18:10   #1
.50 cal
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Dillon BL 550 Basic Loader

Hello, I have been looking to get a Dillon press for a long time now, I like the fact I will have to weigh each charge and prime the cases separately for the best consistency, what would be a great scale and powder trickler to go along with it? is an automatic powder dispenser a good way to go? can you also recommend the best way to deprime the cases before tumbling and also prime them after? thanks! can't wait to make some reloads!
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Old 02-10-2011, 18:18   #2
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I'm a bit perplexed as to why you feel that you need to trickle each charge. Even serious bench shooters don't do that any more.

Again, unless you're a serious bench shooter, a real serious bench shooter there's really no reason to deprime and then tumble... especially if you plan on loading handgun rounds.

You're pretty much defeating the purpose of an excellent progressive press.

As always... I could be wrong.


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Old 02-10-2011, 18:35   #3
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I have to echo jack here. What are you loading for, caliber and purpose would help.
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Old 02-10-2011, 18:35   #4
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Personally, I prefer the hornady progressive over all the Dillons except the 1050.
A progressive is only good for someone who wants/needs to generate a good quantity of loaded rounds quickly.
For someone who prefers to weigh each charge (the obsessive/compulsives), they are better served by a high quality single-stage press.
For any progressive, I consider the Lee Pro Auto-Disk (plus the appropriate powder-through expander dies) and the Dillon powder measure (with the appropriate "powder funnels," and NOT the generic bell-the-case-mouth only powder funnel) to be excellent choices. The Hornady powder measure, in several ways, superior to either and it always worked great for me, but there seem to a lot of people who can't adjust it correctly.
If you want to weigh each charge, then you also might not like the RCBS ChargeMaster. It can weight a charge in about the time it takes you to cycle your press, but it will drop a charge that READS 0.1gn over your target load. This, I believe, is about as good as you can get since even when I trickle by hand I frequently drop a few too many specks of powder. So, you may still prefer to drop a light charge and trickle up to the target weight.
Likewise, if you plan to hand-prime, you again are defeating one of the reasons to get a progressive press and you may be best served with a high quality single-stage or, possibly, the Lee Classic Cast Turret.
I know that if I loaded a lot of bottleneck cases, I would have the Lee Turret on my bench.
Any balance in the $80 or more range will be more than adequate. RCBS makes a nice trickler, as do many other companies.
As far as depriming goes, I take my range brass and inspect, deprimed, and sort at the same time. The sorted brass goes into a tumbler for 30 minutes or more. During this time, almost all the primer ash is knocked out of the primer pocket and all that is left is the dark "stain." This WILL NOT affect priming and does not need to be removed.
On my press, each case is resized and, if there was a speck of media in the flash hole, the depriming pin will knock it out.
Thus, the brass that I pour in the case feeder has already been inspected and cleaned.
I do not judge my reloads by how shiny the brass is but by the targets I shoot.
I can tell you that I did not care for the 550 or 650 when I loaded on them. The cases go onto the press from the right (I prefer to handle the empty case and bullet with my left hand) and one generally fills the case feed tube with about twenty cases, loads them, adds another 20, repeat.
Very quickly, you WANT a case feeder.
With the Hornady I never felt a need or strong desire to buy a case feeder.
Look very carefully at the various presses. Download the manuals for any presses you are interested in along with watching any videos on the company's site or on YouTube. Particularly with a progressive press, you sort of become "locked into" the press you buy so be sure that it really is the BEST for you (and not simply the one that your friends will be impressed over).
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Old 02-10-2011, 18:35   #5
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Iím with Jack. Unless you have some other reason otherwise. If you want to do all of that you do not need a Dillon 550. A single stage press would I think work out better for you.
Unless you have a rifle capable of punching one hole. You are wasting your time and money weighing every charge.
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Old 02-10-2011, 18:38   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GioaJack View Post
I'm a bit perplexed as to why you feel that you need to trickle each charge. Even serious bench shooters don't do that any more.

Again, unless you're a serious bench shooter, a real serious bench shooter there's really no reason to deprime and then tumble... especially if you plan on loading handgun rounds.

You're pretty much defeating the purpose of an excellent progressive press.

As always... I could be wrong.


Jack
An un-named, now banned GT'er who I talk to occasionally on MSN, deprimes his pistol brass before cleaning. I have no idea why.. but he does(I'm fairly convinced he's got a few screws loose anyway, but thats another issue).

Like you, I can't think of any logical reason to do this for every day range fodder. Same w/ trickling powder...

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Old 02-10-2011, 18:45   #7
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Thanks for the replies, I will initially be loading 9mm and .45acp, I was under the impression that after I had practice and was ready to load some SD rounds that I should weigh each charge, my goal is only to load 200 rounds a week
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Old 02-10-2011, 18:51   #8
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I would rather hit my thumb with a hammer then load with a LnL with out a casefeeder for the rest of my life. At least my thumb will heal in a week. Give me a 550 anyday for loading with out a casefeeder. Besides that I do think the LnL powder measure is a little better, but hardly worth mentioning. The concept of a LnL making better ammo. Well, I don't know it doesn't but I don't think it makes much difference.

And who is this unnamed person. Thats no fun at all.
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Old 02-10-2011, 19:11   #9
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hello, my name is Greg, I am a deprimer then a tumbler........regardless of precision rifle, or pistol, you should deprime and tumble.
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Old 02-10-2011, 19:16   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GregKJR View Post
hello, my name is Greg, I am a deprimer then a tumbler........regardless of precision rifle, or pistol, you should deprime and tumble.
how do you deprime? is there a tool or do you use a press with a die?
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Old 02-10-2011, 19:20   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GregKJR View Post
hello, my name is Greg, I am a deprimer then a tumbler........regardless of precision rifle, or pistol, you should deprime and tumble.

I'm certainly not going to take the position that you're incorrect but I'd be very interested in hearing your reasonings for that position.


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Old 02-10-2011, 19:21   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GregKJR View Post
hello, my name is Greg, I am a deprimer then a tumbler........regardless of precision rifle, or pistol, you should deprime and tumble.
Really?! and you should for pistol because???
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Old 02-10-2011, 19:37   #13
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why should somebody deprime and tumble for rifle?
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Old 02-10-2011, 20:04   #14
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The only 2 reasons you do not deprime and tumble pistol brass are.....habit, time. Do you have to deprime then tumble to get a good performance out of your brass? No. Will your performance improve and increase the longevity of your brass if you do? Yes. Why do bench shooters do it? Because they want peak performance out of each round they load. Why should a pistol shooter deprime and tumble their brass? So every single round they load will be exactly like the previous. Take a flashlight and visually inspect 5 rounds and clean out the residue with a pick the next time you load, not every single round will be exactly the same, but all will have residue build up. I am not trying to beat a dead horse here, and many are set in your ways. I was taught what is right, and what is right for me may not be the same as the next. I do not consider myself OCD, some may disagree......but I deprime, tumble, seperate, and at a minimum hit each brass with my case prep center for a second or two. I have not been loading pistol for long with a progressive, although I have loaded many thousands with the person that taught me. I have been loading .308 for awhile on a chucker. If I am going to "teach" someone to load rifle or pistol, I am going to teach them in a way for them to get the most out of each round they load. Not meaning to step on any toes here, these are after all......just my humble opinions.
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Old 02-10-2011, 20:32   #15
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While you're presented your reasoning for cleaning primer pockets very well and theoretically there is basis for your actions unfortunately they do not translate to reality.

In simple terms the man, (or woman) who can hold steady enough to demonstrate the benefit of routinely cleaning primer pockets isn't born yet and his mother is dead. Even a Ransom rest has enough variances where using it as a test vehicle there would be no discernible difference.

Your system does have one intangible benefit however that some might overlook. If one takes extra steps in an attempt to keep each round totally consistent with others, (an impossibility but an admirable goal none the less), one is more likely to apply a higher degree of concentration with each shot. That will result in a much higher degree of accuracy than cleaning primer pockets will ever approach... especially in handgun loads.


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Old 02-10-2011, 20:33   #16
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Youtube is a wonderful research tool. An automatic powder dispensing system such as comes on the RL 550B is plenty dependable enough for loading range ammo.
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Old 02-10-2011, 21:00   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by noylj View Post
Personally, I prefer the hornady progressive over all the Dillons except the 1050.
A progressive is only good for someone who wants/needs to generate a good quantity of loaded rounds quickly.
For someone who prefers to weigh each charge (the obsessive/compulsives), they are better served by a high quality single-stage press.
For any progressive, I consider the Lee Pro Auto-Disk (plus the appropriate powder-through expander dies) and the Dillon powder measure (with the appropriate "powder funnels," and NOT the generic bell-the-case-mouth only powder funnel) to be excellent choices. The Hornady powder measure, in several ways, superior to either and it always worked great for me, but there seem to a lot of people who can't adjust it correctly.
If you want to weigh each charge, then you also might not like the RCBS ChargeMaster. It can weight a charge in about the time it takes you to cycle your press, but it will drop a charge that READS 0.1gn over your target load. This, I believe, is about as good as you can get since even when I trickle by hand I frequently drop a few too many specks of powder. So, you may still prefer to drop a light charge and trickle up to the target weight.
Likewise, if you plan to hand-prime, you again are defeating one of the reasons to get a progressive press and you may be best served with a high quality single-stage or, possibly, the Lee Classic Cast Turret.
I know that if I loaded a lot of bottleneck cases, I would have the Lee Turret on my bench.
Any balance in the $80 or more range will be more than adequate. RCBS makes a nice trickler, as do many other companies.
As far as depriming goes, I take my range brass and inspect, deprimed, and sort at the same time. The sorted brass goes into a tumbler for 30 minutes or more. During this time, almost all the primer ash is knocked out of the primer pocket and all that is left is the dark "stain." This WILL NOT affect priming and does not need to be removed.
On my press, each case is resized and, if there was a speck of media in the flash hole, the depriming pin will knock it out.
Thus, the brass that I pour in the case feeder has already been inspected and cleaned.
I do not judge my reloads by how shiny the brass is but by the targets I shoot.
I can tell you that I did not care for the 550 or 650 when I loaded on them. The cases go onto the press from the right (I prefer to handle the empty case and bullet with my left hand) and one generally fills the case feed tube with about twenty cases, loads them, adds another 20, repeat.
Very quickly, you WANT a case feeder.
With the Hornady I never felt a need or strong desire to buy a case feeder.
Look very carefully at the various presses. Download the manuals for any presses you are interested in along with watching any videos on the company's site or on YouTube. Particularly with a progressive press, you sort of become "locked into" the press you buy so be sure that it really is the BEST for you (and not simply the one that your friends will be impressed over).
The way I look at it if you want a progressive press and if you want to weigh every charge a 550 or 650 is better than the LNL.The Dillonís are a lot easier to pull the case out add the power and put the case back into the press.
If you need an auto indexing and never want a case feeder The LNL is a probably a better choice. But if you ever would want a case feeder the Dillon 650 is the better choice. This week I finally got to play with a LNL. For the case feeder, Mattel could build a better case feeder than what I saw on the LNL. No wonder they wanted Dillon to build their case feeder. The workmanship on the press itself. The Dillon is 100 times better than the LNL. At least IMHO. Plus there is very little difference in price between the LNL and Dillon with case feeder.
If you donít care for the auto indexing than the 550 well work.
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Old 02-10-2011, 21:00   #18
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well, by the time I have 3,000, or 6,000 or 7,000 post on GT......I may no longer be a deprimer tumbler too.
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Old 02-10-2011, 21:05   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GregKJR View Post
hello, my name is Greg, I am a deprimer then a tumbler........regardless of precision rifle, or pistol, you should deprime and tumble.
And may I ask where you decided this was needed? I have NEVER deprimed & tumbled a pistol case, NEVER, not in 35yrs of reloading. I do size & deprime my rifle cases for my precision rifle & hunting stuff, but this is more out of habit than necessity. Depriming & tumbling has NOTHING to do with extending brass life. The only possible reaon to do rifle is the rifle primers leave quite a bit more carbon in the pocket & can make seating new primers more diff. A primer pocket cleaner works far better than any tumble media to clean the pockets, so if I bother to clean them, I clean them properly.
I would rather weigh every charge before using a Lee fixed measure system. Just too restrictive for my needs. The Dillon measure is very accurate & repeatable w/ ball powders. The only reason I ever weigh individual charges is when using stick powders. I have never found a measure that will accurately throw them to the 0.1gr accuracy I desire.
FWIW, GREGK, you are wasting your time doing brass prep more than once. Rifle rounds need an occasional trim, every 3-5 firings, but that is about it. WHile you are not wrong in doing it, you over estimate the gain vs the time.
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Old 02-10-2011, 21:42   #20
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The ONLY rationale for depriming pistol cases, then tumbling, is if you are using steel dies. In that scenario, you have to lube your cases before depriming them, then if you're like me you'd tumble again to remove the lube. I still use steel dies for some pistol calibers, but those calibers are loaded on the SS.

For bottleneck cases, I always tumble after depriming, simply to remove the lube.

If you're using carbide dies and straightwalled cases without lube, I would agree there is no rational reason for tumbling after depriming.
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