The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The Skunkworks > Handloading, Reloading, and Bullet Casting

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old June 4, 2011, 01:55 AM   #1
TennJed
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 26, 2010
Posts: 1,523
Not using a powder measure on a lee turret (for now)

As I stated in my last thread I am think of getting a Lee Classic Turret and batch loading using it as a single stage to start off with.

I have loaded 100 rounds of 357mag using an old lee classic loader kit (the kit where you use a rubber mallet instead of a press), a RCBS hand primer, and a Lee Powder Scoop kit and (a couple) of scales. I did this in part to get a good handle on the basic steps of reloading.

My plan is to charge the cartridges by putting 50 brass on a loading block and scooping a charge onto my scale and pouring it in the cartridges. I believe this will help me to visually double check for a double or light charge. i know this is probably not the fastest way to go but right now I am not worried about speed. i feel like with the turret press I can always upgrade later.

Does this sound reasonable or should I get a stand alone powder measure? I plan on eventually attaching a Lee Pro Powder Measure to the turret press and taking full advantage of the turrets capabilities. But for now I am thinking of going the batch load route and would rather not buy a stand alone powder charge if I will not be using it for the long hall.

Thanks again for putting up with me everybody. i know I have flooded the forum with questions today but have gotten some great responses. Maybe I should petition for my own forum
__________________
Find out just how tall I am
By jumping in the middle of a river
TennJed is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 02:05 AM   #2
NWPilgrim
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 29, 2008
Location: Oregon
Posts: 2,152
Sounds like a good plan to progress. You should always go at the pace you feel you can do so to enjoy and be safe. You probably have a good understanding of the process already and sounds like you have the proper mindset of patience and safety. Adding a Auto Disk Pro measure would retain the principle of the scoops (fixed cavity measuring) while making it a bit more streamlined process. But you should make changes your are comfortable with.
__________________
"The ultimate authority ... resides in the people alone. ... The advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation ... forms a barrier against the enterprises of ambition."
- James Madison
NWPilgrim is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 06:57 AM   #3
chucky222
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 30, 2009
Location: East Alabama
Posts: 166
Started with 50 Anniv. Kit few yrs ago, wish i had got the turret though.
Start slow and be careful, nobody wants a 15 cent reload to blow-up a $600 gun.
__________________
I also have Fire Extinguishers, hope I never need those either.
chucky222 is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 07:28 AM   #4
Jim243
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 5, 2009
Location: Just off Route 66
Posts: 4,570
Sorry Jed, but for the price of a good stand alone powder measure, you can buy 2 or 3 "Lee Auto Disk" powder measure you can use on your Lee Classic Turret press.


Jim
__________________
Si vis pacem, para bellum
Jim243 is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 03:20 PM   #5
jb683
Member
 
Join Date: December 18, 2010
Location: Garner NC
Posts: 66
Just added the Lee Auto disk powder measure to my turret and boy it is great! I used the chart that came with the measure and weighed about 8 or 10 drops to confirm the charge weight. They were all within 0.1 to 0.2 grains of each other using WIN231 powder. I really like this upgrade and as long as you use some way to test weigh your charges at set up, I belive it is as safe as anything out there.
jb683 is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 03:37 PM   #6
Sevens
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 28, 2007
Location: Central Ohio
Posts: 8,904
Quote:
Thanks again for putting up with me everybody. i know I have flooded the forum with questions today but have gotten some great responses. Maybe I should petition for my own forum
We are happy to help. If anything, I would suggest trying to keep more of the questions that are related inside the same thread, if only to make the forum a little less cluttered. But it's all good.

I would highly suggest that you get yourself a powder measure. Certainly, you can hand-weigh each individual charge, and I often do this when building some bottle-neck rifle rounds... but only when I'm making about 20 rounds at one sitting.

To do handgun with no powder measure of any sort? There's a difference between high speed production and simply giving yourself the proper tools to actually produce a workable volume of loaded rounds at the end of your day. Hand-weighing each individual charge for handgun ammo will S-L-O-W your progress so much that you might never get anywhere.

Grab a powder measure... as I said elsewhere, I very much prefer the Lyman 55 over all others, but any measure is enough to get started and to get a feel for the operation.

It's definitely not too much going on and it won't be too confusing for you -- you'll do fine!
__________________
Attention Brass rats and other reloaders: I really need .327 Federal Magnum brass, no lot size too small. Tell me what caliber you need and I'll see what I have to swap. PM me and we'll discuss.
Sevens is online now  
Old June 4, 2011, 04:53 PM   #7
Lost Sheep
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 24, 2009
Location: Anchorage Alaska
Posts: 3,010
Powder measure/dispenser, scale or dipper?

Sevens is correct that measuring every powder charge will be slow, and for handgun loading (in the medium load range) is probably not necessary because most handgun shooting is not high precision or long range.

So, how do you mete powder without weighing each charge if you don't use a powder dispenser?

Dippers.

The Auto-Disk drops powder automatically as you operate the press. If you use the dippers, you drop the same amount of powder through the same die (installing the funnel instead of the Auto-Disk).

All* powder measures use the same principle as dippers. A constant volume, filled with consistency (whether by mechanical or manual means) is equally accurate with either device ("filled with consistency" is key to this accuracy).

A consistent manual technique is essential to a consistently accurate powder charge. This consistency is easier to achieve with a mechanical powder dispenser than with dippers, not not difficult at all with either tool.

Bottom lines:
1) Using dippers will slow the Turret operation a bit.
2) Good, consistent, careful use of dippers will be much faster and just as safe as weighing each charge.
3) If you will use a powder dispenser with the Lee Turret, the Auto-Disk or Pro Auto-Disk is the only way to go.

Lost Sheep


* All, excluding those new powder measures that trickle powder onto an electronic powder scale until a predetermined weight is reached.
Lost Sheep is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 05:27 PM   #8
flashhole
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 9, 2005
Location: Owego, NY
Posts: 1,302
You can do this and keep your press in "turret" mode. I load powder with a dipper cup and drop it down the funnel. You just have to make sure the case is up and nested against the funnel. The Powder Through Die Lee sells works real well with the Lee Funnel as an alternate configuration to what is shown in the photo. This setup is for 45-70.

__________________
Gun control is hitting what you aim at..
flashhole is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 10:21 PM   #9
Aguila Blanca
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 25, 2008
Location: CONUS
Posts: 6,486
I started out using Lee's "Perfect Powder Measure," which is a stand-alone, turn the arm type. It worked fine for me, using Winchester 231 powder, but some people using finer powders have reported that it leaks. I went along with that just fine for probably a couple of years before I mustered the necessary courage to attach the Auto Disk Pro to the turret.

Man, am I dumb! The Auto Disk works like a charm. I would conservatively estimate that my productivity easily doubled, without in any way rushing anything or "pushing" to go fast. It just makes life sooooo much easier, I sprained a kneecap trying to kick myself in the rumplestilskin for not switching over sooner.

Just do it. You can thank me later. Remember, the Turret is basically still a single stage press. Any time you want to check the charge weights you're dropping, just pull a case out after charging it and dump the powder into your scale pan. After you weigh it, dump the powder back into the case, put the case back in the press, and proceed.
Aguila Blanca is offline  
Old June 5, 2011, 03:12 AM   #10
cracked butt
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 22, 2001
Location: southeastern wisconsin
Posts: 537
Quote:
he Auto Disk works like a charm. I would conservatively estimate that my productivity easily doubled, without in any way rushing anything or "pushing" to go fast. It just makes life sooooo much easier, I sprained a kneecap trying to kick myself in the rumplestilskin for not switching over sooner.

Just do it. You can thank me later. Remember, the Turret is basically still a single stage press. Any time you want to check the charge weights you're dropping, just pull a case out after charging it and dump the powder into your scale pan. After you weigh it, dump the powder back into the case, put the case back in the press, and proceed.
This.

Another thing to do if worrying about safety is a factor would be to attach one of those flexible neck reading lights to the press so that it shines light into the case at the bottom of the stroke so you can check the powder level visually.
cracked butt is offline  
Old June 5, 2011, 07:57 AM   #11
dwhite
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 2, 2007
Location: Wake County, N. Carolina
Posts: 286
I second FlashHoles idea.

Make a dipper from a spent case and dip out a charge when you're on the upstroke. Should be real easy to accomplish. My home made dippers are more accurate than my powder measure especially with big flaky powders like Unique and BlueDot. The Lee dies will work great for this. I think they're the only manufacturer with through the die powder charging holes.

All the Best,
D. White
dwhite is offline  
Old June 26, 2011, 12:06 AM   #12
KMAX
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 20, 2011
Location: Texas
Posts: 1,069
Auto-Disk Powder Measure

I love the auto-disc powder measure. I load only for handguns and bulk quantities. Not really for serious precision shooting. The auto-disc speeds things up immensely. If I were loading for rifle or precision shooting, I would probably measure each charge individually, but there would not be a hundred rounds loaded in a session.
KMAX is offline  
Old June 26, 2011, 11:11 AM   #13
mikld
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 7, 2009
Location: Southern Oregon!
Posts: 1,108
I bought my Lee turret 6 years ago, but I still reload like you suggest (individual charging with cases in loading block). I really like reloading (I don't know if I reload to shoot or shoot to reload) and have never gotten into "speed loading". I have no quota and and no RPM (rounds per minute) needs. I look in every case to check powder level. Even though some may call this method "slow" and "labor intensive", it works for me and I haven't had an oops! in 30 years of reloading...
__________________
My Anchor is holding fast!
mikld is offline  
Old June 29, 2011, 04:12 AM   #14
Tactical3HolePunch
Junior Member
 
Join Date: June 29, 2011
Posts: 9
I check every round that goes through my press to see if the powder "looks" right in the case from what I know the load to be previously.

Every (Nth) round gets weighed anyways, but if one looks high or low it gets checked.

The Lee Auto Disk system is fantastic. The adjustable charge bar also works swimmingly.

Power manufacturers can have something like a 16% variance in VMR and still be within tolerance, so the charge bar is a wonderful tool.

You just literally "dial in" your charge weight and then go to it.
Tactical3HolePunch is offline  
Old June 29, 2011, 06:33 AM   #15
excelerater
Junior member
 
Join Date: June 27, 2011
Location: Memphis TN
Posts: 694
Lee Auto disc IMO is fantastic
I use it even on my Dillon ,I like being able to load up a recipe by just tossing in a disc that has a number on it,within 2 drops its on the scales and ready for hundreds of rounds,never leaks for me and it was CHEAP !.....
excelerater is offline  
Old June 29, 2011, 11:36 AM   #16
WyrTwister
Member
 
Join Date: August 31, 2007
Posts: 44
Lee Auto Disk Pro Powder Measure

I started out with the Lee Perfect Powder Measure & it worked fine for flake and extruded powder . It was un-workable with fine ball powder .

I had bought an 8 pound jug of AA # 2200 fine ball powder , for .223 . It was cheap . :-)

So I bought the disk measure . It leaked a little , but not enough that I could not live with it . I have used it for years . I had the little Lee C-Frame set up in a dedicated role , to run the disk measure . To the right of it is my lee Challenger single stage O-Frame press .

After all prass processing was complete & I hand primed with the Lee press mounted Auto Prime ( using the Lee hand press ) , I would dump powder with the disk measure / C-Frame press , then move to the Challenger press & seat the bullet . Then repeat the process for the next round .

I typically get + - .1 grain repeatability .

Do not be surprised if you have to go up one or two hole sizes , from the Lee data to get the charge weight you want . No big deal .

I moved it to my cast iron Lee turret press & it works great . By the way , this press is a fantastic value . Add the Safety Prime system and the disk measure and you are kicking out a loaded round ever 4 operations of the handle ( manually feeding brass and bullets ) .

One week ago I received a LoadMaster Lee Progressive Press with the disk measure . Again , the disk measure is working great . I am still in the learning curve on the press & trying to take it easy .

God bless
Wyr
WyrTwister is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:29 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2014 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.14949 seconds with 7 queries