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Old November 29, 2012, 12:28 PM   #1
hounddawg
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RCBS Chargemaster question

UPS man delivered mine yesterday and last night I ran a few test loads and was ecstatic with it's performance. This morning I decided to load 25 rounds to top off my ammo box for a range trip. I let it warm up for 1/2 hour and started throwing charges of 41.0 grains of 4350. Being cautious with a new piece of gear I had my 5-0-2 scale set up to double check it and found it throwing charges 2 grains off.

Now here is the weird part. If I leave the little transparent cover off it throws a perfect charge every time, if I close the cover it throws charges of 43.0 plus or minus a tenth or two when set to 41.0 grains. I did 25 rounds with the cover open and double checking the charges on the balance beam and every one was spot on. Close the cover and it throws 43 grain charges.

I am still happy as heck with my purchase since it made rifle rounds using stick powder a joy to load compared to the dip and trickle method. Did those 25 rounds in a single setting of less than a hour and a good portion of that hour was head scratching over the cover closed overcharges. I guess my question is whether this normal for this machine? Do any other owners of this machine experience this or is mine just odd in some way. Gut instinct tells me the cover should be closed for draft prevention but mine seems to only work correctly with the cover open.
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Old November 29, 2012, 12:36 PM   #2
Brian Pfleuger
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Sounds to me like your cover has a static charge.

I never, ever use the cover. I've tried it both ways and found no difference. "Draft" doesn't begin to describe the airflow it takes to effect the scale, in my tests. Hurricane would be a better word.
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Old November 29, 2012, 12:46 PM   #3
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Thanks for the fast reply, static never crossed my mind. Also good to know about the draft resistance. I run a window AC about 6 feet from the bench and it did effect my 5-0-2. Most of the summer here is 90F plus so being able to run that AC while throwing powder will be a blessing in and of itself.
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Old November 29, 2012, 12:48 PM   #4
Brian Pfleuger
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Well, you'll want to check for yourself, as several things have been reported to throw of the Chargemaster and other scales.

Fluorescent lights, drafts, static, cell phones.

I haven't personally tested static but I have tested drafts, CFLs and cell phones. None have any effect on my scale, unless I blow on it so hard that it blows the powder away, which seems a little irrelevant.

If I were you, I'd wipe down that cover with a used dryer sheet and see if the problem goes away.
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Old November 29, 2012, 05:37 PM   #5
David Bachelder
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Mine will throw a bad charge if it is not on a stable surface. I keep it on my table just behind the press. I have noticed vibration causing errors. I need to sit it somewhere else but I have found that if I time things just right the problem can be avoided.
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Old November 29, 2012, 06:50 PM   #6
hounddawg
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I think Brian nailed it with his answer on the static. With the cover closed I lightly brush the plastic cover with a anti static cloth and it zeros and holds zero. When I take my finger and lightly brush the top a static charge will build up up and I can get it to go 1 - 2 grains reading on the scale which it will hold until I lightly brush it again with the antistatic cloth and it will once again return to zero.

Easy fix just throw charges with the cover to the side and only use the cover to protect the load cell when not in use. Wish I could fix all my shooting problems that easily
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Last edited by hounddawg; November 29, 2012 at 06:58 PM.
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Old November 30, 2012, 08:56 PM   #7
Rimfire5
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I don't use the cover on my Chargemaster except when I have removed the powder and powered it down.

I always calibrate the scale every time I turn it on.
If you don't you can't be sure what you're actually measuring.

I have found that the scale must be level if I expect the measures to be repeatable.

A powder type will occasionally cause a over run on the last bit of powder if the powder is relatively bulky. The fine grain powders meter very well and don't exhibit that much.
Humidity sometimes causes the powder grains to clump up a bit and may cause a 0.1 grain variation.
Vibration can result in some very strange results so the scale needs to be on a very stable surface.

I always let the scale settle after it "beeps".
The beep only means that the scale reached or passed the set limit.
Then the scale displays the count for that dispensed load and then shows the final result (actually what the dispensed load weighs).
If there was any clumping or any vibration while the last bit was dropped, you might be a 0.1 grain or more heavy.

If the scale was shaken during the measurement process, the Chargemaster can stop and you might find the load is light.
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Old December 1, 2012, 08:50 PM   #8
rottieman33
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Another little trick I read get a plastic MCdonalds straw about a 1/4" long and stick it in the tube flush with the end helps with powder building up on the end.
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Old December 1, 2012, 09:56 PM   #9
arizona98tj
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Quote:
"Draft" doesn't begin to describe the airflow it takes to effect the scale, in my tests. Hurricane would be a better word.
That is interesting. I can blow on mine and easily cause it to start changing....without even coming close to disturbing the powder in the pan.
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Old December 1, 2012, 10:43 PM   #10
Brian Pfleuger
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That's what I read.
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