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(UPDATE) AND YOU THOUGHT YOU HAD A BAD DAY. BOOM

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STEVE SAMELAK
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Post by JIMPGOV 9/14/2020, 7:47 am

HOW ABOUT THIS? NO INJURIES.

CAUSE? OUT OF BATTERY DETONATION.

HOW? TRIPLE CHARGED ROUND (SUSPECTED)WITH A PROTRUDING PRIMER.

WHEN TAKEN APART IT CLEARLY SHOWED THE PRIMER WAS PUSHED DOWN FROM THE TOP BY THE HAMMER RIB. AS THE ROUND WAS SLIDING UP UNDER THE EXTRACTOR. THIS SET OFF THE PRIMER. BOOM ! TRIPLE CHARGED IS SUSPECTED DUE TO SEVERAL PULLED ROUNDS HAVE 8+ GR OF BULLSEYE IN THEM. PLENTY OF ROUNDS WITH PRIMERS NOT PROPERLY SEATED. A PERFECT STORM. COMBINATIONS OF ALL THE ABOVE ITEMS.

HOW? A LONG TIME SHOOTER WHO ALWAYS LOADED WITH A SINGLE STAGE PRESS. HE SWITCHED TO A DILLON 550. THESE WERE IN HIS FIRST COUPLE HUNDRED ROUNDS OR SO HE LOADED. HE STATED HE WAS HAVING PROBLEMS WITH SEATING THE PRIMERS.  KNEW IT WAS HIS FAULT. A REAL GENTLEMAN.

LESSON? IT COULD HAPPEN TO ANY OF US. ANY OF US
DAMAGE? EGO A BUT BRUISED. GUN HAS A BULGED FRAME AND SLIDE.

UPDATE
FURTHER DISCOVERED THE FOLLOWING. THE PROBLEM WITH THE PRESS WAS CAUSED BY THE FOLLOWING NEW PRIMERS.

WINCHESTER USA READY MATCH GRADE PRIMERS RED PACKAGE

THEY WOULD NOT FEED FROM THE TUBE TO THE PRIMER SLIDE. SWITCHING TO OLD WINCHESTER, FEDERAL, CCI AND THE PRESS WORKS PERFECTLY.
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Last edited by JIMPGOV on 9/24/2020, 1:40 pm; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : UP DATEADDED INFO)

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Post by JKR 9/14/2020, 8:08 am

There is a learning curve to progressive loaders. Especially ones that don’t index themselves. Years ago I double charged a 45 Colt round.17 grains of Tightgroup if I remember right. Good ole Ruger Bisley saved me from getting hurt but it was destroyed.
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Post by zanemoseley 9/14/2020, 8:13 am

This is the reason I've been vocal about not advising people new to progressive reloaders to start with a Dillon 550. The press itself its fine but there is no 5th station to utilize a powder check and it lacks auto indexing which increases your chances of a double or triple charge. A Dillon 650 or Hornady LNL AP are better for beginners.

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Post by Aprilian 9/14/2020, 8:15 am

So glad he is OK.  That could have gone terribly wrong.
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Post by oxbowbob 9/14/2020, 11:49 am

I'm sure at times I've been guilty of being a little lax in the reloading room. Thanks for the reminder of the consequences. Glad he's ok.
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Post by aub1957 9/14/2020, 11:50 am

Thanks for sharing this. Good lesson. Have not started loading on a progressive yet, but will keep this in mind when I do.

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Post by bpettet 9/14/2020, 3:54 pm

Glad to hear the person is ok.  As a Dillon 550 owner, there are some definite dangers of double charging, etc.  Very easy to do.  I would recommend a turret press to people developing their reloading skills.   

I would strongly suggest aborting if your cadence is interrupted with a progressive.  Clear the stations and start over.  So easy to get distracted.  I also check powder charges on an electronic scale every so often.  Also, if it doesn't feel right on the charging stroke, stop!  The machines have a lot of tactile feel built into them.  Weird feeling = something is wrong.

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Post by BE Mike 9/14/2020, 5:15 pm

The powder check die in the extra hole is worth the difference in price between a Dillon 550 and Dillon 650/ 750.
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Post by dronning 9/14/2020, 5:47 pm

When I started out reloading (shotgun) my Dad told me if you have a problem or if something doesn't seem right, toss everything on the press in this bucket - NO EXCEPTIONS!.  He handed me a 2 gallon metal bucket.  We cut those rounds open and reclaimed powder and shot, luckily their weren't many after the first few hundred rounds.

Even today I'll clean everything off the press and throw all the rounds in my plastic "to be pulled" coffee can.  I do this even when I know what the problem is, they all go in the can.  Overkill yes but peace of mind and keeping all my fingers or worse are worth it.
- Dave
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Post by TexasShooter 9/14/2020, 8:58 pm

I started with a 550 and have never had a double charge. I installed a light in the center the illuminates all the stations from the top, and mounted a small mechanics mirror on the left side of the press...in position that I can see inside the case at the 3rd station.

Crank the handle, advance, look at the mirror that shows the powder in the case, insert the bullet, crank the handle. A double charge or no charge is very obvious when you can see inside the case...

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Post by kc.crawford.7 9/15/2020, 6:32 am

The reason I won't use anything else but the 550 is because I have to do my part to make sure everything is as it should be.
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Post by Texasref 9/15/2020, 7:12 am

I have loaded a LOT of rounds on my 550.
One of the things I do if leaving the machine is bring the ram up into the tool head. When you come back you'll know exactly where you were in the process. Nothing to do but lower the ram and advance the shell plate.
I also use a powder that fills the case a little more that the fastest available. So it's easier to see.

The most important thing when reloading......TAKE YOUR TIME!!

I hope this helps someone just a little bit.

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Post by mikemyers 9/15/2020, 7:34 am

TexasShooter wrote:I started with a 550 and have never had a double charge. I installed a light in the center the illuminates all the stations from the top, and mounted a small mechanics mirror on the left side of the press...in position that I can see inside the case at the 3rd station.

Crank the handle, advance, look at the mirror that shows the powder in the case, insert the bullet, crank the handle. A double charge or no charge is very obvious when you can see inside the case...
When you have time, can you please take a photo of how you set up the mirror on your 550?   My brother has a 550.  He bought the center light, but for months he refused to look into the cases he was loading.  He thought I was being silly for telling him he had to do it.  He never shot any of his reloads, they just accumulated over time.  I finally got his attention about what could happen to him or his Model 52 if he made a mistake, or got interrupted.  Now he no longer wants to shoot any of that ammo.  I think he's willing to start over again.

I bought a mirror kit and adapted it to my RCBS Pro2000, but I have no idea how one would install it on the 550.  One photo would be great.  I think a kit used to be available, but I've lost track of the source - if I remember correctly, I bought their last kit and adapted it to m Pro2000.  (If anyone wants to see what I didl I'll gladly take a photo.  Works great, and I use it anyway, even though I bought the RCBS auto indexing kit.)

This thread would be a good place, and a good time, to show how a mirror can be mounted on a 550.  Thanks!
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Post by zanemoseley 9/15/2020, 7:44 am

kc.crawford.7 wrote:The reason I won't use anything else but the 550 is because I have to do my part to make sure everything is as it should be.
Isn't that kind of like not wearing a seat belt to ensure you drive better... I'll take my powder check die.

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Post by chiz1180 9/15/2020, 8:27 am

zanemoseley wrote:
kc.crawford.7 wrote:The reason I won't use anything else but the 550 is because I have to do my part to make sure everything is as it should be.
Isn't that kind of like not wearing a seat belt to ensure you drive better... I'll take my powder check die.

It sounds more like an attention to detail thing to me. Regardless of what flavor/color press anyone uses it never hurts to be extra attentive during the process and following a well set up a process to assure safe, consistent ammo.

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Post by TexasShooter 9/15/2020, 11:51 am

Here ya go, Mike. Not much to it and all available at the local auto parts store. A piece of rubber fuel line (maybe 5/8" OD? I don't remember) stuck into the hole that's already there on the 550b. A mechanics inspection mirror with the extendable handle removed, leaving just the mirror and articulating mount. Shove the shaft of the mount into the fuel line...

(UPDATE) AND YOU THOUGHT YOU HAD A BAD DAY.  BOOM Pictur10
(UPDATE) AND YOU THOUGHT YOU HAD A BAD DAY.  BOOM Pictur11

I actually see more than this photo shows. As the case with powder moves from position 2 to position 3 it moves across the mirror, giving me a view of almost the entire interior of the case. It didn't take long before my eyes were automatically moving to the mirror as I pick up the next bullet to put it in the case.

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Post by JIMPGOV 9/15/2020, 11:54 am

TexasShooter



THAT'S AWESOME I'LL GET THAT FOR HIM.

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Post by mikemyers 9/15/2020, 4:12 pm

Thanks!!!!!!    I copied the screen, and sent it to him.

VERY good idea - essential, I think.
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Post by Skid 9/15/2020, 7:46 pm

Glad you didn't get hurt JIMPGOV.

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Post by JIMPGOV 9/15/2020, 9:14 pm

SORRY, WASN'T ME. A FRIEND OF MINE .

I LOAD ON 1050's WITH MARK7 AUTO DRIVES. JP

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Post by Domino1 9/16/2020, 6:18 pm

Use a powder that is voluminous so that if you double charge then it spills over.  This was not the presses fault.

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Post by zanemoseley 9/16/2020, 7:48 pm

Domino1 wrote:Use a powder that is voluminous so that if you double charge then it spills over.  This was not the presses fault.

Easier said than done with 45 target loads, 4.0gr of bullseye or WST seem to barely fill 1/4 of the case. Nothing wrong with a 550 as long as you accept its limitations and yours as a reloader.

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Post by TonyH 9/16/2020, 8:16 pm

I guess after 35 years with a 550 I am going to now have to let that go and buy a 650/750 so I can let go of my limitations.....I think the conversation just got a little silly.Rolling Eyes
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Post by pgg 9/16/2020, 8:33 pm

BE Mike wrote:The powder check die in the extra hole is worth the difference in price between a Dillon 550 and Dillon 650/ 750.

my reloading rule #1: don't ever load pistol on a progressive without a check or cop die.

corollary to rule #1: if your press doesn't have room for a check or cop die, you bought the wrong press.

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Post by zanemoseley 9/16/2020, 9:30 pm

TonyH wrote:I think the conversation just got a little silly.Rolling Eyes

Tell that to the guy that just had a pistol explode in his hand. Use what you like but I cringe when I see people recommend a 550 to beginners.

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