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Old August 26, 2011, 08:09 PM   #26
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Gws,
Oh, absolutely!!! Lol, lol
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Old August 26, 2011, 08:21 PM   #27
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Congratulations...Although you have made your decision, I will add my inputs (better late than never) and confirm you have made the right decision.

About 3 years ago, I suffered through the same dilemma...LNL or 650. After a lot of research, I decided on the LNL...basic set up, no case feeder, configured to load 9mm only. I am 100% satisfied (thrilled) with my decision.

To date, I have loaded over 35,000 rounds of 9mm, 10mm, 40 S&W, 45 ACP, and 38 SPL...mostly 9mm.

The primary decision factor for the LNL was ergodynamics...right hand on the press handle and left hand to feed the case and place the bullet. Also, it is very easy to visually confirm the powder charge just prior to placing the bullet. Note: I strongly recommend the RCBS powder lockout die. Although, when I bought my LNL, the bullet give-away was 1000 bullets instead of 500, and I will admit that this influenced my decision. However, free bullets or no free bullets, I am strongly convinced I made the right decision for me.

2 months ago, I added the Hornady case feeder. I have had my ups and downs with the case feeder...some sessions, it would work flawlessly...other sessions, it would misfeed every 4th or 5th case. After a lot of tweaking, and several calls to Hornady service, and convincing them that my 9mm shell plate was "defective" (which the replaced free of charge), I have the case feeder working great on all calibers.

Let there be no doubt, you will have issues & frustrations with your LNL...don't hesitate to call Hornady service, or post questions on TheFiringLine.

This info is being provide by a happy LNL customer. I am sure there are just as many happy Dillon customers. Good luck with your LNL!
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Old August 26, 2011, 09:07 PM   #28
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Once I got it all dialed in, my LnL that I purchased a few weeks ago runs great with 9mm, I'm not having quite as much luck doing 357 Sig, so I'm going back to my Lyman T-Mag on that one for now. I really like the LnL. Once you get a good rhythm going you can really crank out ammo fast. I like keep a bin of brass and a bin of bullets to the left of the press. Pull down the lever to raise the ram while I'm grabbing the next piece of brass with my left hand. Lower the handle, pop in the new piece of brass. Push the handle forward to prime while I lean forward to check the powder charge then grab a bullet and put it in the charged case. I almost feel like I wouldn't need a case feeder since i already have it in my hand ready to go as soon as the shell plate comes down. I don't think you could go wrong with a LnL or a Dillon.
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Old August 26, 2011, 09:19 PM   #29
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Quote:
2 months ago, I added the Hornady case feeder. I have had my ups and downs with the case feeder...some sessions, it would work flawlessly...other sessions, it would misfeed every 4th or 5th case. After a lot of tweaking, and several calls to Hornady service, and convincing them that my 9mm shell plate was "defective" (which the replaced free of charge), I have the case feeder working great on all calibers.
FtrPilot, how did you eliminate the 9mm cases from getting sideways in the top, transparent plastic funnel and causing backups and spills? I have made a mod that has helped, but is not 100%, and I really would like to eliminate the backups 100%. This remains my last hurdle on the LnL case feeder with 9mm.

Anybody out there use the LnL case feeder with 357 Mag? I can't get mine to discharge the brass, and yes I'm using the large pistol feeder plate. Dillon provides a thick washer to place under the feed plate for 357 Mag, I'm assuming to allow the cases to fall farther into the plate because of their length. I watch the LnL and the cases get to about 10 O'clock and fall back out. Some discharge, but nowhere nearly enough to keep up with the press. Anybody had success?

Last edited by jbrown13; August 26, 2011 at 09:25 PM. Reason: Correct spelling
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Old August 26, 2011, 10:16 PM   #30
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JBrown...I have not solved the problem with stuck 9mm cases at the top yet...and given the other issues i had, prior to getting the new 9mm shell plate, i considered it minor.

Given the feed issues I had with the original 9mm shell plate (now resolved), I really do consider this to be a minor issue. I have not had this problem with any other calibers, just 9mm.

I would be real interested in your mod for 9mm. Any photos? Simple or complex?

I haven't done any 357 yet, but will give it a try this week end. Will let you know if I have any success...
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Old August 26, 2011, 10:36 PM   #31
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I would be real interested in your mod for 9mm. Any photos? Simple or complex?
The mod I did was invented by a user over at Glock Talk. The best way to describe it is to post his narrative on it which also gives you a link to the video he posted on it. Hope this helps. Jeff

"The LNL case feeder will sometimes jam, I've seen the problem posted here a couple times and it happens to me occasionally.
The 9mm seems to be the case it happens to most.
I think I found why it happens and done a quick fix that stopped it.

Sometimes a horizontal case will hang on top of the upright case and keep it from falling in the cute that causes the dreaded jam.
If it falls late and at the same time as the next case in line both cases going in to the funnel cause the back up and overflow.

A peice of laytex tubing and a spring clip solved the problem, I ran 300 + and didnt have another jam.

Hope this video works?
http://s23.photobucket.com/albums/b3...t=100_3340.mp4

Bob"
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Old August 26, 2011, 10:57 PM   #32
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I got my LNL set up and dialed in tonight and slowly loaded a hundred rounds while doing spot checks on crimp, case length and powder quantity variance. Everything went smooth and the loader is very easy to use. I especially like the case being right in front of you when the bullet goes in. I have a small LED desk lamp that shines in the case mouth so I can verify the powder drop. I'm a happy camper!
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Old August 27, 2011, 10:55 AM   #33
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Regarding the LED lamp: I do the very same thing. If you want further breakdown that's objective on the major presses as well as other tidbits, research a fellow member here by the handle of Shoney. He has some links that provide information on the big three out there that may provide useful in the future...
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Old August 27, 2011, 01:40 PM   #34
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1. Right hand inserts an empty case at the right, front side of the press.
2. Left hand then sets the bullet on the case mouth at the left, rear side of the press.
3. Right hand then activates the operating handle.
4. For Dillon 550 only, Left hand manually rotates shell plate.
5. You then release the operating handle and insert another case with your right hand and so forth. (Right, left, right, left, right, left)
Or, you can combine steps 1 and 2. With a very little practice, if you do not have two left feet, you can insert a case at the same time as you pick-up a bullet and put it into the case with your left hand. It is a little strange doing two things at once, at first, but it becomes easyer with practice.
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Old October 22, 2014, 08:16 PM   #35
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Thanks for the review...

Yes, I am bumping an ancient thread, but for good reason. I found it very helpful and I am sure others will as well.

Many thanks Waldog. I am also shopping for a progressive press and your review between the two was one of, if not the best comparisons between the two presses. You are so right when you point out that most "fanboys" can't really discuss as they have not owned both presses.

And your points about the powder drops on both machines are very accurate. If either plate gets dirty, they will mess up the works. And the LnL half turn vs Dillon full turn, will keep the powder in the case.

We all benefit from your information. Thanks.

TexasTea88
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Old October 22, 2014, 10:16 PM   #36
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I haven't owned a Hornady LNL AP. I have a Dillon XL650. The sudden stop of the shell plate when the 650 rotates is a minor annoyance that is easily overcome. Cut a half turn or so off the detent ball spring and the shell plate will no longer snap to a stop. I like my 650. It works for me.

If I had bought a Hornady LNL AP, I am sure I would have liked it too. Each machine you get has it's own quirks you learn to deal with.
There are people who like the Lee Loadmaster afterall. I bought one of them and did not like it so I sold it.
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Old October 23, 2014, 09:00 AM   #37
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I've owned both machines, the LNL and XL650.

They both have design attributes I like.

The LNL is a better non-case fed machine than an XL650. I wouldn't buy an XL650 without a casefeeder if I was at all concerned about production.

The LNL bushings are nice if you're trying to do oddball things, but normally the toolhead and LNL differences are a non-issue.

I do like the LNL powder measure a little better for rifle, but accuracy differences on pistol rounds is nil.

I like that the LNL will not feed a new primer until the old one is seated.

The ability to swap out a case a little quicker with the spring vs. the brass button is welcome at times, but largely an unused feature.

However, for the negatives, my sample of the LNL wouldn't prime reliably and took much more effort to prime in general than the 650 does. I tried numerous fixes, none of which worked completely to cure the issue. The LNL experiences more minor hangups during a run than the XL650 by far.

The LNL was not designed to be case fed and it shows. The LNL case feeder would not reliably feed 9mm desipte numerous part changes, shell plate changes and internet fixes. My production was faster hand-feeding cases.

Bottom line for my samples of each machine is the XL650 produces more ammo faster with far fewer issues.

The primer mechanism is annoying (as is the ski jump); the primer catch system needs an aftermarket fix if you load in any kind of volume and it will sling a little more powder without a thrust bearing in place (which could cause some minor ejection issues, potentially).

However, the case feeder and the machine in general just work, unlike the LNL. There are few if any interruptions in a run.
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Old October 23, 2014, 10:39 AM   #38
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I have had my Hornady LnL since the starting of the new year. Before that I had a ProJector. While the Projector did have some issues ejecting all in all it ran pretty well. It even primed well, never had an issue with it other than the spring for the primer shuttle broke.

I have had exceptional good luck it looks like with my priming system, and I prefer to prime on the press, even if I am going to load the brass on the single stage. I also resize a lot on the press as for both I find it more efficient to just feed brass into the machine and keep going than it is to put it in and pull it out. But from what I am reading about the press, I am unusual in that respect, it seems that most people prime off the press.

Oh by the way, it is kinda funny to see the die hard Dillion guys show up frothing at the mouth when someone posts a very well written review that makes another press seem equal or slightly better than the Dillion.
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Old October 23, 2014, 06:19 PM   #39
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I have no experience with any of the Dillon machines, so I have no advice there.

But, I did use a Pro-Jector for the last 20+ years or so and didn't have many issues with it, other than adjusting the primer feeding system alignment every once in a while. I traded it in to Hornady for a LNL at the beginning of Summer for $200 and have been getting use to it's quirks. The quick-change bushing system for the dies is what made me decide to upgrade, and I am glad I did. I load a number of different calibers, some times multiple ones on the same day, and it makes the operation a lot faster. Changing the primer arm on the Pro-Jector was for me at least, easier than changing the primer punch on the bottom of the ram on the LNL. One difficulty I have experienced is powder from I assume spent primers getting into the primer slider and gumming it up. The case retainer spring has a tendency to pop out of its groove under the shell-plate if loading a cartridge with a large head, like 45ACP if a round is not present at the discharge location, but this only happens for the first few rounds until the shell-plate is fully loaded. I also have the powder COP die installed and it works good for everything except 223/556. The rod hangs up on the case mouth most of the time.
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Old October 23, 2014, 06:47 PM   #40
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Grubbylabs, your last sentence was spot on. Looks as if they're still primed for a fight should you insult their choice of blue over red. From the research I've done, I find red owners to be more tolerant than blue owners. Maybe it has to do with blue owners realizing they've spent $200 more than they should have.

I only bumped the thread as I found Waldog's review useful. I have no dog in this fight as I am still shopping, but I hope it doesn't devolve into a "mine is better than yours" thread.
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Old October 23, 2014, 06:47 PM   #41
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I had a Pro7 a couple years back (predecessor to the ProJector).
When I received it, it was missing several parts (as was the Dillon 450 I had received several years before).
The difference was this:
--When I contacted Dillon, they asked for a list of parts, and sent them to me.
--When I contacted Hornady, they said, "Ummm, we no longer support that model. You need to buy a new one." When I told them that I had read/heard that some ProJector parts could be made to work on the Pro7, and asked if I could buy those parts, I got the same response. "Buy a new Hornady press".

Would you care to guess how all that worked out?

Yeah, I gave the Hornady press away, and I'm still loading on a Dillon.

I'm sure that there are a bunch of happy Hornady guys out there, and they will remain so...until Hornady decides to stop supporting their product.

I have never heard of a Dillon owner being told, "Sorry...you are SOL. Just buy a new one".

When I do, I will switch brands. Until then, Dillon has another customer for life.
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Old October 23, 2014, 08:58 PM   #42
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Gee. Didn't know I was frothing at the mouth. Seems to me that Hornady fan boys take offense just as easily as Lee and Dillon fan boys.
Oh, and by the way, I really like RCBS also.
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Old October 23, 2014, 09:51 PM   #43
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The Dillon press obviously is not crap. They would not sell as many presses as they do if they did, however, they are not "The Best" or the end all be all press that some of their fanse make them out to be.

I also was told by Hornady that they no longer support the press I had, they were flat out of parts. They told me to send them the press and two hundred dollars and they would send me a new one. I thought that was a pretty good deal. I sent them an incomplete wore out press, and they sent me exactly what you would get if you walked into your local shop and bought one.

I have read about great CS experiences and really crappy ones from all of them. I do believe that for the most part they all give superior service to their customers compared to any other industry. I have yet to be disappointed by a reloading companies service. It has always been more than expected.
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Old October 24, 2014, 03:37 PM   #44
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I have an LnL AP, and very limited experience with a Dillon (550 I think).

The bottom line is that whether the paint is red, blue or green - the odds are extremely high that a few things are going to happen:

1. You are going to get a solid piece of equipment with a great warranty that will produce better than factory ammo.
2. You will become a fanboy, to some degree anyway, of that particular color of paint and type of press.
3. You will have some quirks on your machine that you will have to work out and learn how to be creative with.

My machine was really quirky on the primer feed system. So a little Aggie engineering on my part, and it feeds flawless now. It was aggravating as hell up until I really sat down and spent some time figuring out what was causing the problem and what needed to be done to fix it. Turns out the solution was easy and relatively quick and painless.

Aside from that, you'll buy a few extra parts here and there to make life easier. I have a bunch of primer tubes, so before I sit down to start a loading session, I'll fill up 4 or 5 tubes of primers so I don't have to stop to do that during the middle of production. Every 100 rounds I take about 30 seconds and use a little small paint brush and wipe the press, plate, etc. down of any powder or carbon that could gunk up the works. I don't care if I can rip out 700 rounds an hour - I'm pretty much happy with the 400 or so I can routinely produce that are error free.

And call Inline Fabrication http://inlinefabrication.com/ and get the LED light kit. It is probably the single best mod I have done to my press, and was one of the cheapest. (This last part goes for any color of paint out there, BTW).
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Old October 24, 2014, 05:41 PM   #45
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Go with the best: Dillon!!!!
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Old October 24, 2014, 07:53 PM   #46
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Blue Koolaid
Red Koolaid
Green Koolaid

Pride of ownership runs deep with reloaders!

Note: I'm always amused how Dillon owners brag on Dillon's customer service at the same time claiming they never have a problem

All machines have their idiosyncrasies and subsequent "work arounds" the fact is Dillon has been around in it's current form the longest. They are the best known and folks that own Dillon tend to accumulate more accessories, tool heads, powder measures, etc.

Red, Blue, Green, you'll make fine ammo
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Old November 19, 2014, 02:57 AM   #47
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I have been looking at reloading from many different forms to decide what I was going to get as my first press. I took a different route than any one else that I can tell. First I am a 20 year vet. of a 20 year vet. and have lived all over the world. Any where I have been I was always paid in American dollars. That being said my machine had to be made in America. Dillon is made in Scotts Dale Az. RCBS made in Oroville Ca. Lee made in Hartford Wi. Lyman made in Middletown Ct. and Hornady is made in Grand Island Ne.
I reviewed all the presses and narrowed it down to two, Dillon and the Hornady. Now being a small business owner I want my tax dollars to do the most for me. Half of my income comes from Omaha Ne. So I bought from Hornady. I bought a single stage press and an Ammo plant. I have made aprox. 200 rounds of 380 9mm 40cal 45cal .223 and aprox. 50 rounds of 308 and 30-06. I had to adj. the primer pawl and had to ream out the pick up tube on the bullet feeder for the 40cal That is the only adjustments that I have had to make. I have a friend that has a Dillon that came over after I had it tuned in and he was impressed with the performance and my set up.
The only other factor in my decision was the first Tuesday in November, I always vote RED.
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Old November 19, 2014, 11:24 AM   #48
Vance
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Quote:
Maybe it has to do with blue owners realizing they've spent $200 more than they should have.
Prices from manufacturers websites.

Hornady Lock-N-Load AP $536.29
Case feeder from Hornady for the l-n-l ap $467.01
For a total of $1003.30

Dillon XL650 (case feeder mechanism standard equipment) $566.99
Collator (to make case feeding more automated) $218.99
For a total of $785.90

I wonder where I spent $200 more than I should have?

Both machines set up to automatically feed cases looks like the Dillon set up is $218 LESS.

Like has already been stated, Buy what works best for you.
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Old November 19, 2014, 05:16 PM   #49
schmellba99
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Hornady Lock-N-Load AP $536.29
Case feeder from Hornady for the l-n-l ap $467.01
For a total of $1003.30
I know you said from the MFR websites, but at least on the Hornady those prices are way high.

For example, on Amazon (not even the cheapest site out there), the case feeder lists for $297.99 (free shipping with Prime to boot) - that's $169.02 less than what you stated.

The press on Amazon lists for $399.99, again free shipping with Prime. That's $136.30 less. Total difference is $305 - that's pretty significant.

So total price is under $700.00 (still a good chunk of change, no doubt), and you get your 500 "free" projectiles to boot. Point is that they are much closer in pricing than you or the guy you were responding to want to admit.

Funny, the Dillon XL650 on Amazon is about $100 more than at their store, not looking at any shipping costs. And the collator isn't even listed as available on Amazon.
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Old November 19, 2014, 08:53 PM   #50
Vance
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That's why I specified it was the manufacturers suggested retail prices. I wasn't going to search around for the best "sale" prices just for the comparison. You just don't compare sale prices to retail prices.

There is nothing wrong with either machine that isn't easily corrected. They are both backed by good companies providing a good warranty.

Last edited by Vance; November 19, 2014 at 11:31 PM.
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