Progressive press suggestion?

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Progressive press suggestion?

Post by Aprilian on 3/26/2017, 12:57 pm

I'm loading on a single stage which has been a good introduction, but it is aggravating my bad shoulder.   Loading on a Rock Chucker has let me figure out my ideal set up.  Does it exist?

Pistol only
Progressive
I don't need auto case feeding or bullet feeding
Short lever throw (since the Rock Chucker can do rifle, it is a long throw to reach the die - 90 degree arc of which the .45 ACP only uses the last 20-30 degrees.   I don't want to use a tall shell plate because I am using a case kicker to speed up the loading)
Ability to load in two separate operational steps, 1) Decap, Size and Flair   and 2) Prime, powder, powder check, bullet seating and crimp.  I will clean cases in-between those steps

What options might fit that description? 

Thanks
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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by messenger on 3/26/2017, 1:02 pm

The cheapest way and have quality ammo would be a Dillon Square Deal.
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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by LenV on 3/26/2017, 1:33 pm

You will never be able to size and flair in the same motion.

Len
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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by Aprilian on 3/26/2017, 1:33 pm

that still looks like a long throw  http://www.dillonprecision.com/dillon-square-deal-b_8_1_25237.html
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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by Aprilian on 3/26/2017, 1:36 pm

LenV wrote:You will never be able to size and flair in the same motion.

Len
sorry I wasn't clear.   I want to decap, size and flair (in 2 pulls) before ultrasonically cleaning the cases.   Therefore, my later loading process would not need to have a decaping or flaring stations.

However, you bring a good point, I only really need to recap before ultrasonic cleaning.  I can flair later after the case is clean.
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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by LenV on 3/26/2017, 1:42 pm

You might want to look at a Lee Classic Turret press. Easy to do everything in stages. A lot easier then a full progressive to take cases off the line.


Last edited by LenV on 3/26/2017, 1:43 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by Jack H on 3/26/2017, 1:43 pm

Look into a Dillon 550 with the raised mount and handle upgrades from Inline Fabrication.  Use two 550 heads for your double setup.
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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by LenV on 3/26/2017, 1:59 pm

On the Lee the steps would be like this.
  1.Place brass in shell holder and pull lever all the way down

  2. Push lever part way up but not far enough to advance turret.

  3. Remove brass that is de-primed and sized. Repeat 1, 2 and 3 till all brass finished

  4. clean

  5. Place cleaned brass in shell holder that is still part way up.

  6. Place primer in holder and push lever rest of way up

  7. Pull lever all the way down feed powder

  8. Push all the way up and add bullet to case

  9. Pull down to complete bullet if crimping on same motion.

 10. Advance Turret to start position and remove completed round. Repeat steps 5-10 till finished.

Takes a lot less time to do then type it.
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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by Jack H on 3/26/2017, 2:07 pm

Aprilian wrote:
LenV wrote:You will never be able to size and flair in the same motion.

Len
sorry I wasn't clear.   I want to decap, size and flair (in 2 pulls) before ultrasonically cleaning the cases.   Therefore, my later loading process would not need to have a decaping or flaring stations.

However, you bring a good point, I only really need to recap before ultrasonic cleaning.  I can flair later after the case is clean.

Sizing before cleaning will get arguments. 

From what you describe, I would use a universal de-capper die, it does not size.  Then clean.
With the 550 and the one de-capper die installed, you mount the case, crank the handle, advance the turntable with a flick of the thumb, mount another case,.....A 650 would eliminate the thumb flick. 

Then a second head can be setup without the decap pin in the size die for your clean and lubed (optional with carbide, but I would) cases.  The rest of the head would be setup as a normal progressive system.
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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by Rob Kovach on 3/27/2017, 10:05 pm

Why clean the brass? Just do like I do--reload the dirty brass and shoot it.  I haven't washed brass since before Canton 2015.

Lee Loadmaster is a great value and has much of the station capacity that you described.  If you want to prep your brass first, use your single stage for brass prep and hand prime, then use the progressive for the other steps.
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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by Gary Wells on 3/27/2017, 10:22 pm

I've used a Dillon 550 or 550B since about '92 or so & I love it. I have it set up very plain Jane without any of the bells & whistles & love it. Couldn't the handle of most presses be shortened for a shorter throw? I'm mounted direct to my bench for a really solid mount.

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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by Rob Kovach on 3/27/2017, 10:46 pm

Most progressive presses need a full stroke for at least the powder dump function to work properly or for automatic indexing.

The 550b meets some of the OP's wants, but I think he should do the brass prep with a hand deprimer and hand primer with expand and flare with a powder through expander on the progressive.
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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by jmdavis on 3/28/2017, 1:15 am

My method for what it is worth. I work in 500 case increments.

Prep
1. Deprime with Lee Hand press and a Lyman universal Decapper.
2. Wet clean and dry.
3 store in plasticware that holds 500 45 cases.

Load.dillon Square Deal B

1. Size.
2. Prime, flare and drop powder.
3 seat
4 crimp

Ammo goes into bin and then into a 30 cal can.

Match ammo is case gauged before match.
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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by Aprilian on 3/28/2017, 7:59 am

Jack, what are the thoughts behind why sizing may have different results on dirty vs clean brass?

Rob, I too have loaded dirty brass for training without adverse results.  However, I have had high blood lead scores last month and I am trying to eliminate any extra exposure to primer dust - which is why I now ultrasonically clean then.   I decap wearing an N100 mask.
I do hand prime, If I do that in the future then I lose the speed advantage of a progressive/turret and might as well stay with my single stage.

Jim, your process sounds like the one I hope to adopt.
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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by CR10X on 3/28/2017, 8:28 am

First a question. Do you lube the cases before reloading, even with carbide dies?  If not, you really should if reloading is aggravating a shoulder issues.  Its generally the effort, not the range that creates shoulder / elbow problems.

Second observation from my shooting / reloading.  I always clean brass and then lube before sizing or any reloading; keeps the dies cleaner, no scratches from dirt or residue, less force needed, more consistent sizing and the press works better.  And I've never cleaned a pistol primer pocket in my entire shooting experience.  Again my opinion is that any extra time spent reloading is time away from training.

In any event, some others have mentioned looking for "shorter throw" presses for reloading, but I found that using the case lube (liquid spray for me) takes care of most of the issues.  And the longer press arm throw reduces the force needed to operate, again reducing most of the primary cause of physical issues.

Good luck on finding a solution that works for you.  I know others that would be interested in hearing your solution(s).

CR

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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by Wobbley on 3/28/2017, 9:53 am

My process for single stage:

Wet tumble clean.
Size & deprime.
Bell.
Hand prime.
Charge
Seat, crimp.

Cases get handled 6 times

Process for progressive:
Wet clean.
Size & deprime.
Hand prime
Bell, charge, seat, crimp.

Cases get handled 4 times.
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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by Jack H on 3/28/2017, 12:19 pm

Aprilian wrote:Jack, what are the thoughts behind why sizing may have different results on dirty vs clean brass?

Rob, I too have loaded dirty brass for training without adverse results.  However, I have had high blood lead scores last month and I am trying to eliminate any extra exposure to primer dust - which is why I now ultrasonically clean then.   I decap wearing an N100 mask.
I do hand prime, If I do that in the future then I lose the speed advantage of a progressive/turret and might as well stay with my single stage.

Jim, your process sounds like the one I hope to adopt.

What Cecil said about ease and shoulders, clean dies and stuff.  As I developed back and shoulder problems and eventual surgeries, I could not reload at all.  And I have not recovered to full comfort yet after 8-10 years.   However I do believe strongly in clean primer pockets, and hand priming if the progressive fails to seat primers solidly.  Also I dislike dirty cases because they are dirty.  After a while sizing dirty brass, I get a taste in my mouth I do not like.  Decapping only does not spread the dirt as much as sizing.  I do vibrate clean now, but I am considering wet cleaning as I hate separating the brass and media for the same dirt reasons.
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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by willnewton on 3/29/2017, 4:10 am

I just switched from a Lee turret to Lee Loadmaster.  If you have shoulder issues, you really should not deny the power of a case feeder and bullet feeder. 

 Pumping the press is not bad, but by adding the extra repetitive motion of dropping in a case and bullet, your arm movements are multiplied x 3.

I decap with a Lee hand press or on my old Lee turret, then clean, hand prime, and use the Loadmaster for the rest.

The Lee turret is also x4 pumps per bullet, manual case load, manual bullet load, and manual cartridge removal.  This is A LOT of repetitive motion.

The progressive blew my mind once I had it going smoothly. There is one motion per case, not seven like the turret press.  I also have a stand from inlinefabrication.com which positions the press at a very comfortable height, further reducing effort.

Before, I could not reload the day before a match, because my arm or shoulder would feel tweaked.  Now I can reload the same amount and walk out the door ten minutes later to go shoot.
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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by Aprilian on 3/30/2017, 8:05 am

Great info I will continue to refer back to, thanks gents.   

I am going to a reloading store to try the lever pull on a couple progressives.   I plan to get some One-shot this weekend to see if that reduces the shoulder pain.   Since I didn't have any case lube in the house I tried a different approach which seems to have promise in reducing force.  I took some ZEP dry moly spray I had and coated the inside of the expander and resizer dies and the expander plug.   I just ran a few rounds this morning and could feel a nice reduction in effort, I'll have to see how long the moly coating lasts.  The coating may also help reduce the galling which deposits brass on the expander plug.
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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by jmdavis on 3/30/2017, 8:39 am

When I clean I use car wash with a wax additive. It provides the needed lube and cleans the cases.

My specific recipe is a dollop of car wash and ,3/4 teaspoon of lemishine per 500 cases. These are wet tumbled for 2 hours.
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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by KenO on 3/30/2017, 7:37 pm

For progressives, I have three Dillons and a Hornady LNL. They all work just fine, I don't have a preference. Hard to beat the email special deal that Midsouth Shooters supply has been running with the Hornady for $379, with $10 rebate, free shipping, and 500 bullets. I don't need another press, but its enticing. Don't know if its still going on. I don't have a case or bullet feed on the 550s, or the LNL.

I don't have any experience with the Lees.

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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by Rob Kovach on 3/30/2017, 10:12 pm

I run a Lee Pro 1000 and a Dillon 550.

Will Newton is SO right about the Lee's with their case and bullet feeder.

Aprillian, the recommendations I made before were due to the order of operations that you described in your original post.  When I wash brass I convert my Pro 1000 to only deprime, then I clean the brass in a wet tumber with car wash/wax soap.  If I don't deprime first then the primer pockets take forever to dry.  I then clean the press and put the .45 carrier back in and I'm ready to go.  You are going to want the Loadmaster in order to seat and crimp in different steps.  My buddy has the Hornady LNL with all of the goodies.  It's nice, but really the Lee stuff works and costs less.
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Re: Progressive press suggestion?

Post by BE Mike on 3/31/2017, 8:22 am

Since you have arm/ shoulder issues, I'd research which press seems to have the mechanical advantage. I use a Dillon 550B and a Dillon RL650. The step which takes the most effort is the sizing. When using carbide dies and lubing the cases, the effort is greatly lessened. Another thing to consider is that a press with automatic indexing will cut the time needed to load ammo, although the extra effort of each stroke to do this may offset that time advantage. Good luck. Although you say you don't need a case feeder, I have found that using one with my 650 shortens my time at the bench considerably. The 650 also has an extra "hole" so a powder checker can be added to the process. Good luck!
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