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Old February 10, 2013, 04:45 AM   #19
Lost Sheep
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Join Date: January 24, 2009
Location: Anchorage Alaska
Posts: 2,996
Quote:
Originally Posted by cptmclark
Well it sounds like I have some well thought out advice. It sounds from Sheep's last post like to achieve the higher rate ill need to drop charges from a measure. Is that right?
You achieve considerable time savings even without the powder measure by virtue of the fact that in continuous/sequential processing (as opposed to batch processing) you only insert/remove the cartridge case once. You put it in, load the cartridge from start to finish and remove a finished round, ready to fire.

So, even if you still measure each powder charge, you save some time.

Even if you don't use a powder measure mounted on the press (on the die for automatic dispensing), dropping a charge from a measure off to the side or by dipping with a calibrated dipper, it is faster than batch.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cptmclark
I'm a dinosaur and skeptical of dropped charges when precision is the goal. Has that changed?
Me, too. But still able to evolve. Try this. Drop powder from a powder measure or with a dipper (make one temporarily by taking a found 9mm or .380 case, tightly wrapping a plastic wire tie around it. With a little practice, you will be surprised at how accurately you can mete powder with a dipper.
Quote:
Originally Posted by cptmclark
With higher pressure loads especially I'd want to use at least my chargemaster scale. How hard or easy is it to finely set the lee powder measure? Does it come with the press? How about the primer dispenser? I don't want to spring for the whole kit since I have the tools I like.

Another thing is the elevated base. I read that is needed on the bottom in order to put the powder measure on the top. The logic of that escapes me.
My friend has a Chargemaster. Being a dinosaur, I don't trust electronic scales much, but his is pretty reliable. However, it will measure out a charge while you are cycling the Turret press through the other steps, so, if you have one already, good for you. If you find yourself outrunning it, you can decide then whether you want an Auto-Disk or not.

Setting the Lee Perfect Powder Measure is easy and infinitely adjustable, but is not designed to sit atop the Lee flaring and charging die as the Auto-Disk is. The Lee Auto-Disk is not infinitely adjustable unless you have the Adjustable Charge Bar. But the Charge bar is limited in size and not everybody likes it. (Meaning not every powder measures well with it, I think.)

However, if you get some spare disks, you can ream out any cavity that is too small and make it just the right size to drop the amount of powder you want.

If you buy a press alone, it will not come with a powder measure or dies, nor the primer dispenser, but will have one turret and the priming arms (one for large primers and one for small primers). Any Lee Turret kit you get will probably have an Auto-Disk measure and Lee single stage will probably have the Lee Perfect Measure.

Kempf's gun shop is an exception. It comes with dies, primer dispenser and Auto-Disk measure, but not the Lee Scale or a manual. Not including the Lee Scale, I think, is a good thing, as many find it difficult to use despite it being just as accurate as any other scale.

The business about a bottom mount and all that makes no sense to me at all so I can be not help there. I mount my press on a 2x6 with carriage bolts and wing nuts then clamp it into a folding workbench. I keep my press and all gear in three toolboxes when not in use. But that's just me. Other people like to leave their gear set up in a permanent, dedicated location.
Quote:
Originally Posted by cptmclark
Also I don't see if it comes with turrets or dies. Lots of details about thy "kit" but not for just the press.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cptmclark
Well it sounds like I have some well thought out advice. It sounds from Sheep's last post like to achieve the higher rate ill need to drop charges from a measure. Is that right? I'm a dinosaur and skeptical of dropped charges when precision is the goal. Has that changed? With higher pressure loads especially I'd want to use at least my chargemaster scale. How hard or easy is it to finely set the lee powder measure? Does it come with the press? How about the primer dispenser? I don't want to spring for the whole kit since I have the tools I like.

Another thing is the elevated base. I read that is needed on the bottom in order to put the powder measure on the top. The logic of that escapes me.

Also I don't see if it comes with turrets or dies. Lots of details about thy "kit" but not for just the press.
Well, you have to read the contents lists closer. The only turret kit I know of that comes with dies is the one from Kempf's. The Lee Pro-1000 progressive kit comes with one set of dies. I think the Loadmaster progressive kit comes with dies also but am not sure.

You mentioned having some gear already. If you make a list of it all, I might be able to put together a shopping list for you to put together a setup similar to what I use. I would need to know what chamberings you need an an idea of the quantities you will be shooting.

The list below closely describes my loading setup and I lack for nothing I want or need. But it fits my style. It may not fit your style. My press mounts in a plank clamped in a folding workbench and resides in a medium sized toolbox when not in use.

I assume you have manuals already, so I left those off the list.
$0 Eye protection. (In know you have them, but novices will be reading this list, so I include the reference.)
$110 Press, Lee Classic Turret (Chosen because Lee makes the only turret presses that auto-advances at the discretion of the operator and the Classic is superior to the Deluxe for several features.)
$40 Dies, carbide. Lee because it includes a shell holder, a plastic dipper for powder and the "powder through" design.
$5 Work surface and hardware to mount. Mount your press on a plank of scrap 2x8 and secure it to a (padded) coffee table.
Dropcloth to catch any spilled powder or lost primers (dead or live). Use an old sheet. Quieter than plastic, less static and drapes better.
$155 Subtotal - plus shipping At this point, you can reload, but are limited in flexibility and speed.
$10 Lee Scoops/Dippers. Cheaper than any powder dispenser/measure and repeatability/cosistency is excellent.
$4 Powder funnel. Lee's funnel fits right in the their "powder through" die.
$169 Subtotal - plus shipping At this point, you are minimally equipped to load well. Not too convenient, but not handicapped to the point of terminal frustration, either.
$25 Lee Safety Prime. You can use your fingers, but this is so much better. Fits on the Lee Press.
$25 Scale, any brand. Lee's, at $25 is cheapest. You can do without, with the full set of Lee Dippers, but better to weigh. For peace of mind if nothing else.
$219 Subtotal - plus shipping At this level of investment, you are decently equipped
$34 Lee Auto-Disk powder dispenser/measure. It mounts atop Lee's "Powder through" die. With this, you may not need the funnel or dippers. The Pro Auto-Disk is better and 18 dollars more.
Loading Bench. A folding workbench works fine for me. You can get a kit or build your own, too.
$253 Subtotal plus shipping Now you are well-equipped as most reloaders, except for convenience accessories or tools you will use only occasionally.

Other stuff:
$20 Bullet puller I never used one for my first 20 years of loading.
$30 Calipers I had none for 30 years. Now that I do, I find uses.
$50 Tumbler Never had one. Got one now. My brass is prettier. Shoots the same.
$25 Powder Trickler - handy if you weigh each powder charge.
$378 Subtotal
$63 Difference to get a more user-friendly scale than the Lee

$50 misc accessories & tools, (e.g. chamfer tool)
$491 Total for a first-rate setup based on a Lee Classic Turret for one chambering
$50 each for Turret and Dies for any extra calibers, $84 each if you want a dedicated powder measure on each set of dies.

If you start with the kit from Kempf's Gun Shop, you will be a few bucks ahead and will not be saddled with an extra scale or manual you may not need since you already have those items.

Lost Sheep

Last edited by Lost Sheep; February 10, 2013 at 04:53 AM.
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