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Old August 21, 2012, 09:14 AM   #26
dahermit
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Not sure I get you. I only use the scale to verify the first few throws from the powder measure and then spot check after that. I can't see how a digital scale makes it any faster.
Me too. If I am loading some critical (formal target purpose), rifle rounds, I throw a light charge, and trickel the rest into the pan. In that scenerio, there is little/no difference in speed between a balance beam or electronic scale.
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Old August 31, 2012, 12:28 PM   #27
colt45sa
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digital vs. beam scale

If you elect to buy a digital scale, you had better be prepared to spend some serious money. I bought a cheap ($30.00) digital scale and created months of frustration trying to get an inherintly accurate cartridge to shoot. One fortunate day, for some unknown reason I took our my RCBS 5-10 and weighed a couple of loads already charged in a number of cartridges. WOW, I couldn't believe my eyes when I discovered how far off they were. I dumped all the charges and rebuilt the ladder using the beam scale. Next time at the range, bingo, there's the load. Sometimes new technology just doesn't cut it ----- unless you put a lot of money into it.
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Old August 31, 2012, 12:39 PM   #28
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There are some decent inexpensive electronic scales out there and all you need is a check weight. Since I use dippers I'm happy with the Lee Precision scale since I only need it to check new powder containers and the first couple dipper loads. The scale can sit for months or more depending on how often I buy new powder. For me, I would like to add a cheap electronic scale and some check weights to my Lee scale. No need to spend a lot of $$$. Always good to have a beam scale as a back-up.
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Old August 31, 2012, 12:58 PM   #29
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Odd guy out here. I use Digital sclaes only. Beam scales are accurate,but ya know VHS's still work to,but like a beam scales Old,Outdated,Slow,Cumbersome. To those that say they can drop a load with a beam as fast as i can with a Dig scale. I say BS big time. Accuracy is great with a Dig. Just my 2 cents.
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Old August 31, 2012, 01:59 PM   #30
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There are some decent inexpensive electronic scales out there and all you need is a check weight. Since I use dippers I'm happy with the Lee Precision scale since I only need it to check new powder containers and the first couple dipper loads. The scale can sit for months or more depending on how often I buy new powder. For me, I would like to add a cheap electronic scale and some check weights to my Lee scale. No need to spend a lot of $$$. Always good to have a beam scale as a back-up.
Hey guy, we agree again. I have 2 inexpensive "like that word better than cheap" digital scales. One consistently weighs slightly heavy so a charge is actually slightly lighter. But it has been consistently the same for 8 years not, never varies always the same, so it creates no problems. Cast was about $30.00. The other weighs dead on perfect, repeats the same every time, so again no problem. This one cost about $40.00.

What does one want a scale to do? Weigh accurately, repeat the same every time. Not much more to ask for.

BTW, I also have a few beams that I use once in a blue moon, and we have a blue moon tonight, soooooooooooo.
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Old August 31, 2012, 02:47 PM   #31
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The primary weight set was obtained for nothing from a chemistry department that was disposing of them. Why? Because beam balances have not been used in labs for a couple of generations. The weight sets are good for checking digital performance, but for that application you do not need a set for every student in the quantitative analysis lab.

It is a good check set for the little DS750 which has given me good service. With the different weights you can check out the scale in just about any weight range you need to work with, if you know that 1 gram = 15.43 grains. Note that a 1-gram weight is on the pan of the DS, which is reading 15.4 grains because its precision is only good to .01 gram, or .154 grains, which is really closer to .2 grain precision than the .1 that is usually quoted for inexpensive digitals. The DS performance is accurate, because the reading is correct for the 1-gram weight, and it is quite repeatable. I can replace the weight 20 times in a row and the reading always comes up 15.4 grains. If I use a 2-gram weight I will see a reading of 30.9 grains and I know I am good to weigh charges in the .30-30 range of powder weight. If the reading is off, perhaps I need to check the support of the scale on the bench or maybe I need to calibrate. Inaccurate readings of the check wieghts have never been a problem with this particular scale, but I have seen others whose performance is less accurate and less repeatable. RCBS and others sell weight sets for balance checking, though perhaps not of the quality or scope of this set.

Last edited by McShooty; August 31, 2012 at 02:53 PM.
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Old September 1, 2012, 11:19 AM   #32
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Awesome deal.....

http://www.natchezss.com/product.cfm...8&src=exrbSrch
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Old September 4, 2012, 07:53 AM   #33
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I like the Frankford Arsenal scale as well...never had a hiccup with it.

That is a killer price on the LNL dispenser...hmmm....
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Old September 4, 2012, 09:56 AM   #34
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I just ordered one this morning... Can't wait :-)
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Old September 4, 2012, 10:42 AM   #35
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I also like the Frankford Arsenal scale, I bought it from MidwayUSA on sale for 19.99
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Old September 4, 2012, 01:01 PM   #36
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"VHS's still work to,but like a beam scales Old,Outdated,Slow,Cumbersome. "

Scales aren't DVD players and if a beam powder scale is slow or clumbesome it's only because it's being used in a clumsy manner.
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Old September 4, 2012, 02:22 PM   #37
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Nathan,
I love electronics and gadgets but if you are weighing each and everycharge, get a real good digital scale. The battery powered Jenningsa JS-50XV I bought this spring was environmentally sensitive, neded to be "warmed up" and rezerod several times. I ust never had confidence in it and put it away and I doubt I willever used it again. I think I would have been much more satisfied with the My Weigh Gem Pro 250. Probably get that one this winter.

I now use a Redding beam scale to verify my powder measure charge setting. I find it hard to beat the accuracy of gravity to zero a beam scale.

Last edited by Hoosier_Daddy; September 5, 2012 at 06:27 AM.
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Old September 4, 2012, 02:34 PM   #38
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I'm not buying the theory that beam scales are perfect or else you are not using them right. I have a 505, decent beam scale. I have 6 Weight checks of 4 different weights. The Scale is at eye level and I check the calibration each time I start to work on a load. I am always fearful that if I bump it I will have to recalibrate it and that is a time consuming process. I frequently put the powder pan on the scale and then have to tap the beam to make sure it settled correctly. Sometimes it "sticks", it's never off by much, no more then 1/10 but just the same it does "settle" all the time. I don't have a digital scale yet, so I can't say they are better, but I don't believe the beam scales are perfect or all that either.
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Old September 4, 2012, 03:07 PM   #39
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I'd put the RCBS Chargemaster scale up against any beam scale for accuracy, repeatability and speed, say with 10 unknown weights.



A beam might be a wonderous thing if you're verifying the weight of known items but if your item doesn't weight exactly the set amount, you have to make changes.

The digital doesn't care if it's 150.0gr or 150.5 or 149.1, it just tells you, INSTANTLY. No sliders, no waiting for the rocking to stop, just a number.

Same number for the same item, over and over again.

Add the dispenser, and it's a God send.

The theory of why digitals suck doesn't dissuade me. The theory doesn't translate to real life.
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Old September 4, 2012, 03:13 PM   #40
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...say with 10 unknown weights.
I would agree with that.... But of course I (for one) rarely use it that way. My beam scale is set to a weight and then used for checking the powder measure. Simple, repeatable, accurate enough, and no electronics or batteries needed.
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Old September 4, 2012, 04:32 PM   #41
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I like to check the powder measure with the beam scale also. Evert 4 or 5 I'll check on a digital. I know a lot of people don't like the Lee perfect powder measure but I have never had mine drop a wrong charge since I've been using it.
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Old September 4, 2012, 06:17 PM   #42
Brian Pfleuger
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Originally Posted by rclark
I would agree with that.... But of course I (for one) rarely use it that way. My beam scale is set to a weight and then used for checking the powder measure. Simple, repeatable, accurate enough, and no electronics or batteries needed.
Yeah, but you're weighing them to see what they weigh. If you knew what they weighed, you wouldn't be weighing them, yes?

The beam scale is actually more "digital" in the sense of it's output than is a digital... it doesn't give you a weight so much as a "Yes" or a "No", effectively "0" or "1".

A digital actually gives you an "analog" output, it can be any value within it's range.

Those charges you're checking, say they're supposed to be 40.5gr. Your beam scale tells you that they're either 40.5gr or they're NOT. If they're NOT, it doesn't tell you what they are, they're just NOT 40.5gr.

The digital, with it's range of outputs, will tell you that they're 40.3gr, consistently. You can change your dispenser setting and it'll tell you that the next one is 40.7gr, no changes to the scale required.

Short version: The only time I'm weighing something that I know what it weighs, is when it's the check weight. Otherwise I wouldn't be weighing it.

Sure, a good digital needs power. The good ones don't use batteries, the output depends on the voltage across a metal bar under stress, batteries don't provide consistent voltage. I don't see this as a particular issue. I have power and I've never needed to load ammo when I didn't. If I want to be ready for TEOTWAWKI, having a $35 beam scale on hand would do it. If I'm just concerned that a prolonged power outage might occur and I'll be compelled to load ammo during it (Why?), a $35 Uninterruptible Power Supply would power the scale for many hours.
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Old September 4, 2012, 08:59 PM   #43
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I weigh each and every powder charge for rifles. For 30 years I did it with a RCBS 1010 beam scale and now I do it with a Lyman 1200. With the beam scale, I threw the powder charge with my Lyman 55, put the charge on the 1010, trickled powder as required and loaded the cartridge case. Now the Lyman 1200 throws the charge quickly and then trickles powder quickly to the charge weight I have entered into the computer. So much easier and faster. And...one thing that I have said that I'd do but haven't gotten around to yet is to check the repeatability of the 1010 and manually trickling versus the Lyman 1200. If the Lyman says I have 59 grains, I have 59 grains. If the 1010 indicates that I have reached the charge weight that I've set on the 1010, how much variability is in the 1010 charge weights? Is it going to be exactly 59 grains each time? I really doubt that I'll be dead on at 59 grains each time using the beam. Will it vary between 58.8 and 59.2? I don't know, but I do intend to find out. And will it all matter? No. But I still want to know. Accuracy of measurement is the objective. I have it with the Lyman, but did I have it with the 1010 beam scale, and to what degree?
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Old September 4, 2012, 10:52 PM   #44
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[B]Scales aren't DVD players and if a beam powder scale is slow or clumbesome it's only because it's being used in a clumsy


NO comment worth posting on this one
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Old September 5, 2012, 08:58 PM   #45
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When a digital scale reads 6.0 grains, it means the charge is anywhere between 5.95 and 6.05 grains. As soon as the charge hits 6.051 grains, it reads 6.1 grains. Actually, if the claimed accuracy is 1/10th grain, that may mean your charge is between 5.9 and 6.1 grains. Depends on how good your digital scale is.

With a beam scale there are an infinite number of in between measurements which we may or may not be able to see.

This isn't a flaw in digital scales. It's just a new perspective we need to understand.

I used my ChargeMaster to build a ladder of pistol rounds for the first time last weekend. Checked every charge on my 5-0-5 beam scale. Did some look a touch low on the beam scale? Some a bit high? Yes, but most looked dead on and it was much faster than trickling every charge. Even checking the output on the beam scale.

One thing I've found nice with a digital scale is the ability to weigh 5 or 10 powder throws from the measure at once. That gives me a much better idea of how much to adjust the micrometer on the measure, plus it essentially measures my average throw instead of just one in isolation. I used to do the same thing occasionally with the beam scale but it is much easier with the digital scale.

Don't worry though, I still trust the 5-0-5. That's what I'll use when working up precision rifle ladders.
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Old September 6, 2012, 05:49 AM   #46
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Good Post Tin Man- Yes even the most accurate Digitasl scale will have a error rating of .00625 grains. I assume the scale you are talking about is one that weights to the 1/10th gn. You can get scales that weigh to the 1/100.
That would help with the variance you posted. But is it really a big deal??.
Mine weights to the 1/10th as im sure most others do.

None the less I have never given thought to what you posted.Should say it has never crossed my old mind. But now Thanks to YOU. I will have to reconsider this and come up with another excuss to buy a better one
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Old September 6, 2012, 07:30 AM   #47
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In terms of significant digits, most digitals are the same as most balance scales. If the balance scale isn't marked smaller than .1gr, any estimate you might make in between is just a guess. From a scientific standpoint, it's not a significant digit. The digital just eliminates the insignificant digits for you.
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Old September 7, 2012, 11:18 AM   #48
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I just dusted off two different digital scales that I gave up on earlier.

The Jennings JS-50XV (about a $40.00 scale) still sucks. Took about 3 minutes to "warm up" or "Stabilize" before it finally settles down and provides repeatable readings. I put this one away and hope I forget where I put it.

The other is a Jennings JS-VG (about a $80.00 scale). Worked great right away. I am pretty sure my previous problems with using this scale was due to air currents from a ceiling fan. Last nights test restored my lost confidence in digital scales. I just wish it had a 110 Vac power supply so I didn't have to rely on battery power.
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Old September 8, 2012, 04:39 PM   #49
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I have a Hornady Pacific I got off ebay for almost nothing. I have a LnL AP press with Hornady's powder drop. Once dialed in, I check the first 10 powder drops, then one out of 10 or so. Using AA 5&7 exclusively, I have never seen powder drops drift off more than .1 grains. The scale used this way is no more faster or slower than a digital but I sure do trust it!!
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Old September 8, 2012, 06:10 PM   #50
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