Question about the RCBS Pro2000 Primer inserting components

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Question about the RCBS Pro2000 Primer inserting components

Post by mikemyers on 3/26/2018, 7:35 pm

I bought an RCBS Pro2000 several years ago as an improvement to my "RCBS Big Max".  As I recall, it worked very well for 45 ACP.  I started with Speer bullets, but because of what I learned in this forum, I contacted Terry at Magnus Bullets and switched to his #801 bullets, to be used with 3.8 to 4.0 grains of Bullseye (and an OAL of 1.130".  I don't remember having any problems with the 45 ACP other than me needing to go through the learning curve to understand the press.

One year ago I switched the press for loading 38 special for my M-52.  The shell plate was replaced, and I installed the components for "small pistol primers".  I think I had some issues (I wish I had written them down in my log book), but did get 20 rounds done for testing the next day - worked fine.  Then I left on a trip.


I started getting things ready again last week to load more rounds for my M-52.  The powder micrometer surprised me by still loading 2.8 grains of Bullseye.  I really only had one issue.  At the station where the primer is pushed into the case, sometimes the lever was stopped by something preventing the primer from being pushed into the case - not sure what.  I decided I would just load one round at a time, and try to sort this out.  All I found was the shell plate and the star wheel never really "lock" into place.  There is always some "wiggle" as free play.  My first guess was that the shell plate wasn't aligned correctly at that station.

I called RCBS and had a nice chat with Elisha.  We decided I would remove the star wheel and shell plate, clean everything, and try again.  She asked if I could try a different shell plate, to see if it locked into place the same way, but I wanted to first try my parts after cleaning them.  We agreed I would call back tomorrow, and probably speak to Larry Meyer who is an expert at this press.



I won't know until tomorrow if re-assembling these components made a difference.  Has anyone here had a similar problem, and if so, how did you fix it?

My list of possible causes (some of which are probably impossible) include:


  • The shell plate itself might be defective - unlikely, but maybe one or more of the "notches" is not where it belongs.  I will number the notches, and see if the problem only happens with one of the notches, not the others.
  • The spring loaded component that pushes the primer into the shell casing might be defective - bent?  oversize?  
  • Maybe I will coat the bottom of ten shell casings with "Dykem", and run them through the press until I get the issue - then look to see where the Dykem shows something was hitting the shell casing.
  • The plastic APC strip might be defective.  I guess I could continually load only one primer into the very first primer hole, and load over and over using only this one hole, to see if I still occasionally have a problem.


Any other suggestions I can try?
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Re: Question about the RCBS Pro2000 Primer inserting components

Post by mikemyers on 3/27/2018, 9:39 pm

Spoke to Larry Meyer at RCBS this afternoon.  After eliminating a lot of other possibilities, he had me switch a spring with a stronger one.  This is a spring that pushes against a steel ball, which "locks" the shell plate in place.  I loaded 20 more rounds to test it, and it only got "stuck" once.  I think I need an even heavier spring.

There's also an auto-indexing option, but I thought I preferred simplicity.  After watching this video, it now seems like a good addition.  Anybody here have one of these?  If so, was it worth getting?
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Re: Question about the RCBS Pro2000 Primer inserting components

Post by mikemyers on 4/18/2018, 10:47 pm

For anyone interested, or who has the Pro 2000, here's an update.

Larry at RCBS sent me the complete "assembly" the goes beneath the shell plate.  This includes the mechanism that handles the strips with primers inserted.  I went through the press and cleaned and lubricated everything, then installed this new assembly.  My alignment issues are gone - now the press works the way I hoped it would.  I've loaded about 200 rounds, doing them one at a time.  As long as I get into the right "rhythm", everything goes smoothly, and there are no more mis-alignment problems.  The few errors I've had, were OE, Operator Error.

I haven't yet gotten to where I use the press as intended, but I've been experimenting with running two rounds through the press, not just one.  Seems to work fine.


As a side note, while I can run brass as-is through the press, everything is smoother and easier of I use a little RCBS lube on the cases.

As an experiment, after reading lots more here, I decided to seat the primer depth manually.  RCBS provides a bolt with a lock nut, which stops the travel of the press for seating the primer.  I like the sense of "feeling" I get, as the primer is inserted and pushed into place.  (Just what I'm used to from doing this manually.)


One of the things I did for my whole reloading life is to check the powder level visually for every shell.  That's hard to do on this press - there is so little powder, it's hard to get a good view into the cases.  So, I ordered and set up a Lockout Die.  If there is no powder, or a double charge, the press will just "lock up".

I'm guessing many of you do many thousand's of rounds at a time.  For me, it's 50, 100, or maybe 200.  I like reloading as needed, and use up what I've done, then do some more. 


For the Model 52, I set the powder dispenser for 2.7 grains of Bullseye.  I'm not shooting at 50 yards, only 25.  Next week I'll switch over to 45, and see how that works.  

I was wondering if the powder dispenser on a progressive press is adequate for you guys, or do you do it manually with a powder trickle, to get the load more precise?
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Re: Question about the RCBS Pro2000 Primer inserting components

Post by blindshooter on 4/19/2018, 8:59 pm

"I'm guessing many of you do many thousand's of rounds at a time.  For me, it's 50, 100, or maybe 200.  I like reloading as needed, and use up what I've done, then do some more. "

I could load thousands in one session but prefer to only load what I may use in a couple weeks. If I have a problem I won't have so many to disassemble. Most of my loading is done with a D1050 so in a hour or less I have what I need for the next couple weeks shooting.

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Re: Question about the RCBS Pro2000 Primer inserting components

Post by USSR on 4/20/2018, 6:32 am

mikemyers wrote:I was wondering if the powder dispenser on a progressive press is adequate for you guys, or do you do it manually with a powder trickle, to get the load more precise?

Mike,

As I tell the students in my reloading class, after weighing a series of charges run thru your powder measure, you will know what to expect of it and gain confidence in it.  Just make sure you have a small rotor in it designed to accurately dispense small quantities of powder.   Also, use a baffle and add powder occasionally to keep the downward pressure from the weight of the powder the same.

Don
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Re: Question about the RCBS Pro2000 Primer inserting components

Post by mikemyers on 4/20/2018, 8:17 am

Thanks, Don.

Yep, small rotor.
Yep, check several times before starting to re-load.
Nope - need to make a baffle again.
Adding powder - I don't do more than 50 or 100 rounds...powder level barely changes.
Unless I'm reloading the very next day, powder goes back in the original bottle.

If I set it for 2.7, as it is now, every so often I might get a 2.6 reading.  Not frequently, but sometimes.  I have the "micrometer" style adjuster, but once it seems stable, I leave it there.  Every ten rounds or so I do powder checks.

Question - does +/- 0.1 grains make a noticeable difference?

I didn't know you taught reloading.  That's great!  I wish someone had spent more time showing me what to do in the 1980's.  The fellow I bought the equipment from only taught me the basics.
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Re: Question about the RCBS Pro2000 Primer inserting components

Post by USSR on 4/20/2018, 9:14 am

Personally, I don't sweat 0.1 grain or less unless it's happening with some frequency.
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