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Dillon powder measure bars

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Texasref
inthebeech
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Post by inthebeech Fri Dec 10, 2021 10:28 am

I see that they have something called an extra-small pistol bar.  Is anyone using this and have you collected any accuracy (of the thrown charges) data?  I start to lose the otherwise consistent precision of +/- .1 grain when I go down below 4.0 grains of Clays.  So my 3.8 gr short line load always has a greater charge weight variation and the velocity spread of these loads is greater which confirms.  I have not done any RR testing to see if the larger variation is significant.  I’ve had this issue for years so I doubt if it can be attributed to anything else that might be “less precise” only when I make the 3.8 load ( crimp die is loose only when I load 3.8…).  You get the idea.
This extra small charge bar might be the most precise down in the range of charges that we use.
inthebeech
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Post by Texasref Fri Dec 10, 2021 11:20 am

I'm using the small bar, throwing 3.7 of N310.
Tested on several 10 throw batches, and was within 0.1 gns of the 37 gn total.
(Measured on FA scale).
In doing some research that's about as accurate as it gets, unless a trickler is used to weigh exactly to 3.8 gn.

Sorry I could not be of more help.

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Post by RoyDean Fri Dec 10, 2021 12:21 pm

I have several of the X-Small bars. Used them down to as low as 1.4 grains of N310 - which is their practical limit AFAIK. They work fine. I also have an Arredondo and another brand both with micrometer type adjusters - they make it easier to dial in an exact throw, but I have no data to prove whether they are more consistent than the Dillon bar.

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Post by PhotoEscape Fri Dec 10, 2021 12:23 pm

X-Small bars are for sub-2.0gr charges, i.e. 1.7gr of N310 for 32ACP.  Otherwise all Dillon powder bars have same problems.  It is hard to call +/- 0.1gr deviation a "precision" (mathematically it is 5% on your 4.0gr charge) load.  However if you are happy with such, Dillon bars should hold it without any alterations.  Otherwise there are several things can be done to improve accuracy.  I'd start from replacing OEM adjuster bolts with something after market.  You can find sample on my website, and there are others.  Pinnacle of accurate bar is the one sold by UniqueTek with micrometer adjuster.  You can drill and tap side of the bar, and install set screws to lock insert once charge is set.  And you can polish internal surfaces of powder measure and surfaces of powder bar and insert.  And there are more can be done to powder measure itself if you want to spend time.

AP
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Post by Schaumannk Sat Dec 11, 2021 2:10 am

inthebeech wrote:I see that they have something called an extra-small pistol bar.  Is anyone using this and have you collected any accuracy (of the thrown charges) data?  I start to lose the otherwise consistent precision of +/- .1 grain when I go down below 4.0 grains of Clays.  So my 3.8 gr short line load always has a greater charge weight variation and the velocity spread of these loads is greater which confirms.  I have not done any RR testing to see if the larger variation is significant.  I’ve had this issue for years so I doubt if it can be attributed to anything else that might be “less precise” only when I make the 3.8 load ( crimp die is loose only when I load 3.8…).  You get the idea.
This extra small charge bar might be the most precise down in the range of charges that we use.
I think you have a different problem.   Clays does not meter well.  Keep your powder measure full, and if possible a weight on the powder in it.  Or switch to WST.  :-)  the smaller the charge, the worse the variation.  I could never get Clays  to throw well for short line loads.

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Post by inthebeech Sat Dec 11, 2021 9:54 am

[quote="Schaumannk"]  Or switch to WST. [/quote]

That’s the plan. When I use up the remaining couple of pounds in my keg, there’s an eight pounder of Bullseye on deck. I was just thinking the new bar would tighten up charge tolerance for all powders.
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Post by DA/SA Sat Dec 11, 2021 11:02 am

A cheap aquarium air pump taped to the hopper evens out the throws on flake powders like WST, Clays and 700X. It creates just enough vibration to keep the flakes moving. 

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Post by inthebeech Fri Dec 31, 2021 8:58 am

I’m getting about the same.  Normal spread of .2 grains (+/- .1 gr) opens up to .3 (3.7-4.0) when I’m down at my 25 yd charge of 3.8 grains throwing Clays.  Just for kicks I tested my old Saeco #3 measure with the pistol insert and am a getting a spread of .1 (all charges are between 3.7 and 3.Cool.  I then got curious about bullet drop with spread that the previous 3.7-4.0 grains was causing.  The velocity range that I often get, which is 700-810 f/s, at fifty yards equates to more than two inch difference in drop (45 acp BC)! At my skill level I am not likely to see a vertically oriented oval shaped group but I should from my RR.  It does seem to indicate that velocity spread can’t be completely ignored when settling on your fifty yard load.
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