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Old November 29, 2011, 11:30 AM   #1
fortkevin2
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What am I doing wrong here?

Hi guys,
Just starting to get back into reloading and im having an issue. It may be very very basic but im bewildered. Im loading 38 special with a 158 gr. Lead bullet. 4.0 grains of unique. I got my load data from "Modern Reloading 2nd edition" minimum load is 4.0 and max is 4.3.

My issue is that im constantly getting 3.3 grains while using the .43 auto disk. This has been verfied on a lee beam scale and a hornady lnl scale.

Again, its been years ao it could be something very basic in an adjustment. Here are picturea of my press. Thanks ahead of time.



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Old November 29, 2011, 11:36 AM   #2
Brian Pfleuger
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You're using too small of a disk.

Lee's estimates of charge output by each disk are exactly that, an estimate.

Use whatever disk gives you the 4.0gr you're looking to get.

Lee's tables are little more than a starting point.


Edit: This is assuming that by "constantly getting", you mean "consistent". If you're getting INCONSISTENT results, it's because Unique is hard to meter.

Last edited by Brian Pfleuger; November 29, 2011 at 12:29 PM.
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Old November 29, 2011, 11:38 AM   #3
Wyoredman
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First i must admit, I am not familiar with your press. With that being said, I am familiar with Unique. I use it for the same load in 38SPL and for light 158 gr LSWC loads in .357 mag.

Unique is very hard to meter. I suspect that is your problem. When I am loading such small quanities of Unique, I weigh each one and use my trickeler. Very time consuming.
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Old November 29, 2011, 12:26 PM   #4
dabluesguy
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On my autodisk I normally have to go up two hole sizes to get the charge I am looking for. It's that way for most powders. Unique does not meter consistently but 231 does. Lots of trial and error. When you find the correct hole for your charge make a note of it so you won't have to go thru the process again.
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Old November 29, 2011, 12:41 PM   #5
deadwolfarms
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Make sure that the .43 auto disk and the unique gives you that charge. Becouse the different powder shapes. You can get the info from lee
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Old November 29, 2011, 12:53 PM   #6
Mike Irwin
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Unique is a pain in the ass when running it through most powder throwers.

I quit using it specifically because of that.
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Old November 29, 2011, 01:12 PM   #7
IllinoisCoyoteHunter
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Make sure that when the case is run up into the powder measurer that the disc is sliding COMPLETELY over the drop hole. In other words, make sure you are pushing the case far enough up.
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Old November 29, 2011, 01:20 PM   #8
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I made a little bitty brass hammer to tap the side of the powder measure on each throw. Unique tends to not throw a consistent charge without it for me. That solved the problem. I happen to like Unique except for that. But like has been said, the suggested number to use is just that, a suggestion. I finally went to a Dillon. Now I can dial in just what I want.
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Old November 29, 2011, 02:11 PM   #9
briandg
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You do realize that the 0.43 marking on the disk you are using represents 0.43 cubic centimeters, and that measurement is not intended to be used as load data for powder charges? I'm pretty sure you do.

According to the chart online, .43 should throw 3.9 grains.

First, I'd like to be absolutely certain that you're using unique. Then, I'd like to suggest that you keep your measure absolutely full at all times, rather than just putting enough in to load a few rounds. Then, make sure that you run a couple dozen charges through it before you even bother weighing it, so that it will be settled and compacted.
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Old November 29, 2011, 02:30 PM   #10
fortkevin2
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I am 100% sure im using unique. I do realize its measuring it by volume not weight. It was giving me 3.3 for the 10 times tried. Moving to the .46 disk gives me spot on 4.0 grains
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Old November 29, 2011, 02:47 PM   #11
excelerater
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always use scales and never use paper written refrence as to what hole size

Lee paperwork is WAY OFF
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Old November 29, 2011, 03:07 PM   #12
fortkevin2
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I always use scales to verify what has been dropped just didnt understand why it was dropping 3.3 instead of 3.9-4. I guess every powder isnt the same size or shape.
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Old November 29, 2011, 03:25 PM   #13
bossman
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I usually go up 1 disk above lee's chart and it gets me close. I'm like you with it dropping 3.3gr instead of 3.9 gr. from the 43 disk. I guess all's well that ends well.
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Old November 29, 2011, 03:29 PM   #14
Don P
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Quote:
Unique is a pain in the ass when running it through most powder throwers.

I quit using it specifically because of that.
I concur 110% Never again in/at/on/used at my reloading bench
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Old November 29, 2011, 04:10 PM   #15
Lost Sheep
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Considering a standalone powder measure?

If you decide to abandon the Auto-Disk design altogether, you can stick Lee's $4 funnel (it is a precise fit) on the die and pour powder by hand.

A separate powder measure off to the side or powder scoops would add about 4 seconds to each round's processing time and might be more accurate (even scoops, if your technique is consistent) do well in the accuracy department, though Lee's tables will still tell you too light.

Or, you could mount a different design powder measure just barely above the press and drop powder manually into that same funnel. You just have to build a mount that will position it correctly. It could be stationary, like mounted on the wall behind the press or a tall mount from your workbench surface or mounted on a threaded rod screwed into your unused die station. But that would shake the powder measure as the turret rotates.

Many ways to find solutions.

Good luck,

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Old November 29, 2011, 06:43 PM   #16
briandg
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Quote:
I am 100% sure im using unique. I do realize its measuring it by volume not weight. It was giving me 3.3 for the 10 times tried. Moving to the .46 disk gives me spot on 4.0 grains
Unique is, if my memory serves me correctly, a largish disk powder. There's going to be a lot of air space in that very small measuring cavity. If you were measuring flour, you could count on absolute accuracy with a cavity of any size. With something like unique, or a large grained stick powder, there's lots of room for poor utilization of the space. A bigger cavity won't have that problem.

I'm agreeing with you to just change the disk position to .46 and run a few test rounds through your pistol.
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Old November 29, 2011, 07:08 PM   #17
Jim243
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Quote:
3.3 grains while using the .43 auto disk
The chart says to use the .46 disk for 4.2 grains of Unique. Since they drop a little light, I am sure you will get your 4.0 grains with that disk. Or you could use the .49 disk and get 4.5 grains of Unique also since it drops light I would believe you will get 4.3 to 4.4 grains from that disk.

When all else fails use Win 231, no problems with ball powder.

Good Luck
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Old November 29, 2011, 07:56 PM   #18
Crankgrinder
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i have this same setup though ive upgraded to the pro measure kit but it uses the same disks. With unique powder and power pistol both my powder measure will always throw a heavy charge first two or three times and then lighter charges after that usually by .3-.5 gr or so, after this it will level off and throw consistently as i weigh every 5th round for about two hundred rounds or so. not one checked round has been off yet knock on wood. Another thing you could do is take a drill bit slightly larger than the hole in the disk and bore out that cavity to customize it for your load if a suitable cavity is not already available. ive never done this with the disks but have with dippers and im sure itll work for both. dont pay the charts any mind on the wights/volumes my chart is never right for that.
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Old November 29, 2011, 09:11 PM   #19
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The Chart for Lee dippers is overstated about 20 percent as well, I wouldn't expect the disk measure to be any different.
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