Warning

 

Close

Confirm Action

Are you sure you wish to do this?

Confirm Cancel
Member Login

Site Notices
Posted: 3/26/2009 6:09:19 AM EDT
Im new to reloading and trying to get something that can grow with me without having to be replaced down the road for a larger setup. I have narrowed it down to either the 550b and the LNL auto indexing press. The question i have is with the dillion, you need the dies plus the conversion kit for each caliber and with the LNL, all you need is the shell plate and dies. I might be wrong but it seems like the LNL is cheaper when it comes to dealing with mulitple calibers. I plan to reload 223, 45acp, 357, and 44mag. If I bought the LNL press, and the dies for all of the calibers, can I just pop out the dies and drop in the different ones when i want to reload for a different caliber? thanks for all ya'lls help.
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 6:22:01 AM EDT
They're all pretty good.... Hornady, Dillon, RCBS... I don't think you'd be disappointed by any of them.

On the big PLUS side... you get like 1000 free bullets with the Hornady... get the .45 XTP's they're worth
the most. They took a long time (3.5 months) to get.... but they finally came last week!!
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 6:29:20 AM EDT
Your new to reloading so you get a complex piece of equipment! This is like putting a new driver in a New Mustang. You are assembling a component that is going to cause a controlled explosion in your hands. Learning to do it right the first time and every time is more important than buying an expensive press just because you can afford one. i have 8 different presses and have been loading for 45 years.
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 6:58:43 AM EDT
Originally Posted By 1903pa:
Your new to reloading so you get a complex piece of equipment! This is like putting a new driver in a New Mustang. You are assembling a component that is going to cause a controlled explosion in your hands. Learning to do it right the first time and every time is more important than buying an expensive press just because you can afford one. i have 8 different presses and have been loading for 45 years.


MY opinion... (yes I have an asshole TOO!! )

I think anybody getting into reloading should buy one of the single stage "starter kits" (like RCBS's or equivalent)
because it includes all the basic tools you'll need. If you want a progressive as well (and can afford both) ...
go for it. If you load multiple calibers & load a lot... which I think the majority of loaders that stick with it do...
You will ALWAYS want/need a single stage. I'm sure a lot of people do it... but working up a load 5 to 10 rnds
with this charge, another 5 - 10 with that, a few seated this deep a few seated that deep, etc., etc. seems like
a real hassle with a progressive. After all progressives are designed & intended to churn out volume.

Then again... I'm sure there are plenty people out there that just pick a load, build a pile, go to the range,
manage to have them all go bang & hit the paper 100 yrds away and say LIFE IS GOOD!! Of course
nobody here is like that. After all, to be a member here... you have to be Sniper instructor!
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 7:32:38 AM EDT
Originally Posted By 1903pa:
Your new to reloading so you get a complex piece of equipment! This is like putting a new driver in a New Mustang. You are assembling a component that is going to cause a controlled explosion in your hands. Learning to do it right the first time and every time is more important than buying an expensive press just because you can afford one. i have 8 different presses and have been loading for 45 years.



Well that was one reason I liked the 550b because you can operate it as a single stage until i get used to how everything works. I am not worried about complexity. I am highly intelligent and probably more so than many people that do use it. I do realize that experience is key and I have a close friend that is willing to help me learn the ropes. And by the way, I learned to drive on an 87 Mustang GT 5 speed.
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 7:38:20 AM EDT
Originally Posted By ander254:
Originally Posted By 1903pa:
Your new to reloading so you get a complex piece of equipment! This is like putting a new driver in a New Mustang. You are assembling a component that is going to cause a controlled explosion in your hands. Learning to do it right the first time and every time is more important than buying an expensive press just because you can afford one. i have 8 different presses and have been loading for 45 years.



Well that was one reason I liked the 550b because you can operate it as a single stage until i get used to how everything works. I am not worried about complexity. I am highly intelligent and probably more so than many people that do use it. I do realize that experience is key and I have a close friend that is willing to help me learn the ropes. And by the way, I learned to drive on an 87 Mustang GT 5 speed.


Pretty full of yourself too. In my experience, people who feel the need to point that out... usually have to, because if they didn't no one else would notice. Just sayin'....
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 7:53:09 AM EDT
Originally Posted By 1903pa:
Your new to reloading so you get a complex piece of equipment! This is like putting a new driver in a New Mustang. You are assembling a component that is going to cause a controlled explosion in your hands. Learning to do it right the first time and every time is more important than buying an expensive press just because you can afford one. i have 8 different presses and have been loading for 45 years.

Below is a copy-n-paste of a post I recently made in another thread on this topic:

I have to disagree with this last point to at least some degree. While you're probably right that an experienced reloader shouldn't "encourage" someone to go with a progressive as a 1st press, I'm not sure why it's an inherently bad thing for someone new who *has* done their homework to opt, based on an analysis of their own current and most likely future needs, to go that direction. Take myself, for example. I'm 48 years old, so I'm guessing I'm not a member of the "younger generation" you describe above...and maybe this doesn't apply to your argument. But then again, maybe it does, at least a little.

I've been devouring every bit of material I can on the subject of reloading for months now, and only recently came to a decision regarding hardware, and ordered (among many other things) a Hornady L-n-L AP, which arrived yesterday. Now I've read many, many explanations of why a newbie ought to go with a single-stage...or a turret at most...to begin with. I understand the reasoning for it, and it all makes perfect sense. However, I know that for myself it is a near-100% certainty that before long I will be wanting to do relatively high-volume loading of range/practice ammo, and doing that without an inordinate (for me) amount of time and effort calls for a progressive. However, I will not be doing so until I am completely confident that I have gotten the hang of the basics by, for an extended period of time, using the press as though it were a single-stage, reloading one cartridge a time, stopping after each station to inspect the results. I'm a grown man, and not in a hurry to rush off half-cocked (pun intended) to dive head-long over my head into something I'm not ready for.

So why not just buy a single-stage to begin with, and upgrade to a progressive later on? Economy, of both the financial and effort variety. Why start with one press, get it set up and spend time becoming accustomed to its operation only to later upgrade to a different one and go through the setup and learning curves all over again? And with Hornady's 1,000 free bullets promotion, the press almost pays for itself...as I will recoup nearly 2/3 of its purchase price by receiving free range-quality bullets (that I will shoot in by far the largest volume) to reload. This makes it ultimately less expensive than a good single-stage. Now, were I younger, more impulsive and less disciplined than I am now, it would make more sense to start with a piece of hardware that did not constitute a temptation to rush into something that I'm not yet ready for. But I'm a quite cautious individual when it comes to this sort of thing, and am more than willing to start slow and use the L-n-L in a semi-neutered mode until I get enough experience under my belt to move on to the next step. Given all that, starting with a progressive press that I'm almost certainly going to end up wanting anyway makes sense, I think.

Now, I might well end up wanting a single-stage as well for some/all of the reasons people give for having them in conjunction with their turrets/progressives. If so, I'll buy one (or more). No problem. If not then I haven't wasted time and money on a piece of equipment that I no longer want/need. I've got my L-N-L installed on the bench and set up (not that complicated, BTW...since I'm not yet availing myself of the automated features like the powder measure and primer feeder) and am just waiting for my supplies (primers and powders) to arrive, at which point I'll begin adjusting dies and going through each stage of the reloading process one careful step at a time, just like I would with a single-stage:

Insert cartridge into shellplate, pull handle, retrieve cartridge from shellplate and inspect results. Rinse and repeat.

As a bonus, once I have the dies adjusted I'll be able to move between caliber setups without having to REadjust them. I suspect that this will prove to be not only a convenient time and effort saver, but will also allow me to focus more on the details that are crucial to safety and quality results.
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 7:58:04 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/26/2009 7:58:27 AM EDT by DanParker]
Originally Posted By NA_Wreckdiver:

Well that was one reason I liked the 550b because you can operate it as a single stage until i get used to how everything works. I am not worried about complexity. I am highly intelligent and probably more so than many people that do use it. I do realize that experience is key and I have a close friend that is willing to help me learn the ropes. And by the way, I learned to drive on an 87 Mustang GT 5 speed.

Pretty full of yourself too. In my experience, people who feel the need to point that out... usually have to, because if they didn't no one else would notice. Just sayin'....

Maybe...maybe not. Complexity was raised as an issue, which makes his claim (immodest though it may have been) germaine. I don't see how your snide personal attack lent any value to the discussion at all.
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 8:10:25 AM EDT
Well I am actually getting ready to graduate from a top tier law school which speaks for itself. As far as the responses so far, neither of which answered the question asked. I was not asking if a person new to reloading could operate the 550b or LNL and I understand the liabilities involved with making your own ammo.

Thank you Dan for sort of addressing the issue instead of trying to steer me away from a certain type of press.
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 8:13:54 AM EDT
The new Hornady LnL EZ-ject is more the equal of the Dillon 650 rather than Dillon's 550B. Both machines are 5 station, auto indexing, and have optional casefeeders that can feed rifle brass such as the .223. The 550B is a 4 station, manual indexing machine with a casefeeder which will only feed most pistol brass.

In addition, equipped with optional casefeeders, the LnL and 650 cost about the same, however, Hornady offers 1,000 free bullets with their press.
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 8:16:01 AM EDT

Originally Posted By ander254:
Well I am actually getting ready to graduate from a top tier law school which speaks for itself.

Yep, money and connections.
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 8:18:25 AM EDT
In retrospect... maybe it was harsh, personal attack, NO.

It was pointing out an attitude that doesn't tend lead to safe results. It's usually an attitude
that eventually leads to accidents. Accidents that unfortunately aren't always limited to the
one who's got the attitude.

In any event... sorry, it was harsh.
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 8:22:56 AM EDT
I bought a 550B as my first press and haven't had any problems. It took me a few hours to set it up but I was putting rounds out that same day.
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 8:33:35 AM EDT
Originally Posted By COSteve:

Originally Posted By ander254:
Well I am actually getting ready to graduate from a top tier law school which speaks for itself.

Yep, money and connections.

Those can get you in. Graduating is another matter entirely.
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 8:41:40 AM EDT
Originally Posted By DanParker:
Originally Posted By COSteve:

Originally Posted By ander254:
Well I am actually getting ready to graduate from a top tier law school which speaks for itself.

Yep, money and connections.

Those can get you in. Graduating is another matter entirely.


I have many friends which that statement applies to. However, I am not one of them and I am paying for my own education. I grew up with every thing I needed not wanted.
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 8:42:33 AM EDT
I just started reloading a few months ago with a 550B and have had no problems.... I read several books, took a lot of advice from reading this forum and i'm really anal about measuring and weighing over and over.... you won't have any issues as long as you treat the process with respect and learn all you can.... I see no valid reason to start off with anything but nice equipment....
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 9:00:43 AM EDT
Thank you to the encouraging responses. With the 550b do you have to get the conversion kit for each caliber?
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 10:26:18 AM EDT

Originally Posted By ander254:
Thank you to the encouraging responses. With the 550b do you have to get the conversion kit for each caliber?

Yes
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 11:19:12 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/26/2009 11:23:11 AM EDT by DrBear]
OP, if you like the 550 then get it. You won't be disappointed. I'm sure you hear a lot of people telling you to get a single stage press or something very basic. I respect their opinion, but I would have to disagree. I think if you can change the oil in your car you should be fine with all the intricacies involved with a progressive press like the 550. Granted, I've been reloading for only 4 years. My first press was a 650 with the casefeeder. I read the manual and setup the machine step by step and have been making great ammunition since. I love the machine.

BTW, remember, modesty goes a long, long way!!! In here and in life.
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 11:38:31 AM EDT

Originally Posted By COSteve:

Originally Posted By ander254:
Well I am actually getting ready to graduate from a top tier law school which speaks for itself.

Yep, money and connections.

Good, so you'll be ready to sue someone when you blow yourself up

COSteve is right, the 650 is closer to the LNL, and relatively very close in cost.

I'm one of the group that says to start with a single stage as well. You'll end up using one anyway if you're reloading rifle, so why not start with one.
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 12:07:55 PM EDT
Originally Posted By ander254:
Im new to reloading and trying to get something that can grow with me without having to be replaced down the road for a larger setup. I have narrowed it down to either the 550b and the LNL auto indexing press. The question i have is with the dillion, you need the dies plus the conversion kit for each caliber and with the LNL, all you need is the shell plate and dies. I might be wrong but it seems like the LNL is cheaper when it comes to dealing with mulitple calibers. I plan to reload 223, 45acp, 357, and 44mag. If I bought the LNL press, and the dies for all of the calibers, can I just pop out the dies and drop in the different ones when i want to reload for a different caliber? thanks for all ya'lls help.



the LNL shell plate is the equivilant to dillons conversion kit. you still need one for each caliber. and they are pretty close in price

the dillon is $41.95 http://www.dillonprecision.com/#/content/p/9/pid/23598/catid/2/RL_550B_Caliber_Conversion_Kit

and the LNL is $39.21 https://www.hornady.com/shop/?ps_session=b6dcc566f2ab63dfb0c630f23a470896&page=shop%2Fbrowse&category_id=2c0ab154ffbb10ef31d44c1afa1dc7de


so for adding calibers, it looks to be about the same price for each.

and i dont know how it is with the LNL, but with dillon, many of the calibers share the same conversion kits (at least some of the parts) ie. 45acp and 308 use the same shellplate and locator buttons


so with the 550 being $90 cheaper (but without the free bullets) i would say they are pretty close in price overall

but with the 550 you can still use it as a single stage if you need to, since it is not auto indexing. which i dont think is a bad thing, as you can still crank out a ton of ammo fast.

Last night i timed myself while loading 223. With my brass already prepped, and taking my time, it took me 16 minutes to reload 100 rounds.



yes i drank the blue koolaid and it was well worth it

Link Posted: 3/26/2009 12:43:14 PM EDT
Originally Posted By iluvguns:

the LNL shell plate is the equivilant to dillons conversion kit. you still need one for each caliber. and they are pretty close in price

the dillon is $41.95 http://www.dillonprecision.com/#/content/p/9/pid/23598/catid/2/RL_550B_Caliber_Conversion_Kit

and the LNL is $39.21 https://www.hornady.com/shop/?ps_session=b6dcc566f2ab63dfb0c630f23a470896&page=shop%2Fbrowse&category_id=2c0ab154ffbb10ef31d44c1afa1dc7de

so for adding calibers, it looks to be about the same price for each.

and i dont know how it is with the LNL, but with dillon, many of the calibers share the same conversion kits (at least some of the parts) ie. 45acp and 308 use the same shellplate and locator buttons

so with the 550 being $90 cheaper (but without the free bullets) i would say they are pretty close in price overall

but with the 550 you can still use it as a single stage if you need to, since it is not auto indexing. which i dont think is a bad thing, as you can still crank out a ton of ammo fast.


I paid $29.99 each for my L-N-L shellplates from Graf & Sons (http://www.grafs.com/), so the street price is substantially lower than from Hornady direct. Strangely though, their prices for Dillon conversion kits are about $3 higher than if you bought them direct from Dillon.

The Hornady shellplates are also multi-cartridge for the most part. For instance, my plate #1 will be used for both .243 Win & .30-06 (and could be used for 35 other cartridges as well).

You can insert or remove a cartridge at any point on the L-N-L, so it too can be effectively used as a single-stage, which is what I'll be doing with it for some time yet.
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 1:33:36 PM EDT
I have 2 single stage presses and a New Hornady L-N-L AP. I've been loading for over 10 years now and I'm of the sort that the Single Stage Starter Kits will beneifit you in the long run.

The RCBS Rock Chucker Master Kit comes with:

Rock Chucker Supreme Single Stage press

505 scale

Uniflow Powder Measure

Speer Reloading Manual

Hand priming tool with small and large primer plugs

Folding Hex Key Set with 0.050", 1/16", 5/64", 3/32", 7/64", 1/8", 9/64" and 5/32" keys

Universal Case Loading Block, which holds 40 cases in most rifle and pistol calibers

Case Lube Kit, which includes a 2 oz bottle of Case Lube-2, a case lube pad, 2 case neck brushes for .22 through .30 calibers and an accessory handle

Powder Funnel for .22 to .45 caliber, including the Winchester Short Magnum calibers

Chamfer and deburring tool for .17 through .45 caliber


All of these tools/equipment will be used your Entire reloading hobby.

The Hornady L-N-L AP FEATURES INCLUDE:

LOCK-N-LOAD POWDER MEASURE
The only system that uses a full size powder measure that can be reset to another charge or powder with the push of a button. The unique inserts can be preset to the charge you use with the caliber you are loading. The most flexible (and economical) powder system available for progressive presses.

PRIMING SYSTEM
The primer slide in the shell carrier receives a primer at the top of the stroke and inserts in the case at the bottom of the stroke. The slide stays in perfect alignment, and is easily changed from large to small. Use the included primer pick-up tubes (large and small) to fill the primer tube.

LOCK-N-LOAD BUSHING SYSTEM
Switch dies from one caliber to another or change out die stations and begin reloading again in seconds. Once set, dies never needs readjusting. Bushing locks standard 7/8"-14 dies rock-solid in perfect alignment.

CASE ACTIVATED POWDER DROP
Get a charge of powder only when a cartridge is in place. Works with any cartridge, pistol to magnum rifle. Can be manually operated to check powder charge. Install the optional Lock-N-Load powder die for the fastest changeover of all progressive presses. Also fits RCBS measurer.

FIVE-STATION DIE PLATFORM
Five stations allow for all the variables and still let you use your standard dies — most 7/8"-14 dies and 7/8"-14 powder measures will work.

UNIVERSAL EJECTOR
Cases are automatically ejected into the included case catcher.

AUTOMATIC INDEXING
This very important feature automatically advances shells to the next station with the smoothest indexing of any press in this price range, and rotates every half stroke to lessen the chance of powder spillage.

CASE RETAINER
Quickly and easily remove and/or replace a case from the shell plate at any point in the cycle without extra retaining buttons. Case retainer fits all calibers.

LARGE CARTRIDGE CATCHER
A large capacity catcher comes standard with the L-N-L AP Press. An extra large capacity catcher which holds up to 1/3 more completed cartridges is availableas an option.


The Dillon 550b comes with:
The basic 550 includes:
Machine with caliber conversion kit (shellplate, locator buttons, powder funnel) in the caliber of your choice.
Powder measure with standard large and small powder bars (small installed), Small bar throws from 2.1 to 15 grains of powder Large bar throws up to 55 to 60 grains of powder.
One prime system with large and small priming parts.
One large and one small pick up tube
One toolhead
One powder die
One loaded cartridge catch bin
One written instruction manual
One set of standard Allen wrenches

You are still missing some of the basic tools that you'll need for load development and case prep work. With the cost of all those basic tools less the press and powder measure you will spend almost the same amount of money as buying a single stage press kit.

Not to mention if you a processing Mil-surp brass, a Single stage is very handy in getting the primers out and smaging the primer pocket.

You will also need a Case trimmer. I'd buy one that you can use a drill to operate vs. the handcrank version (time consuming)

I'd also recomend a Tumbler( the biggest you can afford)

If you wanna start with a Progressive, go for it. I however find myself using the single stage for load development and case prep.

I have my RCBS Rock Chucker set up with a Hornady L-N-L conversion bushing so I can change the dies out quickly. This also influenced my purchase of the L-N-L AP as I'm already set up with my Dies.

I dunno if that helps or not,

Jason



Link Posted: 3/26/2009 4:47:44 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/26/2009 5:55:19 PM EDT by joedapro]
Originally Posted By ander254:
Originally Posted By 1903pa:
Your new to reloading so you get a complex piece of equipment! This is like putting a new driver in a New Mustang. You are assembling a component that is going to cause a controlled explosion in your hands. Learning to do it right the first time and every time is more important than buying an expensive press just because you can afford one. i have 8 different presses and have been loading for 45 years.



Well that was one reason I liked the 550b because you can operate it as a single stage until i get used to how everything works. I am not worried about complexity. I am highly intelligent and probably more so than many people that do use it. I do realize that experience is key and I have a close friend that is willing to help me learn the ropes. And by the way, I learned to drive on an 87 Mustang GT 5 speed.


as one lawyer to another who graduated at the top of his class from a tier one lawschool, i suggest you find another passion. you have much to learn grasshopper, and none of it is about reloading.
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 5:40:30 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/28/2009 4:22:30 AM EDT by gs1150]
Two 550b's and a 450 in my loading room.
First was the 550b.
From opening the box to the first finished 9mm round falling into the bin was 47 minutes.

Its EASY.
Its simple.
It AINT frigging rocket science.
Take your time, read,relax,load,SHOOT.
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 5:41:17 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/26/2009 6:01:05 PM EDT by COSteve]

Originally Posted By joedapro:
as one lawyer to another who graduated at the top of his class from a tier one lawschool i suggest you find another passion. you have much to learn grasshopper and none of it is about reloading.

Well put.

Example - I spent 41½ years doing DoD contracting at the largest US defense contractor. While I've taken a few law courses, I don't have a law degree, however, I was designated the corporate expert in IP contracting, not the raft of lawyers that were suppose to know the requirements (a few were top in their class from both Bolt and Harvard).

How you ask? Because I lived the issues rather than just reading a book and then taking a test on them. I learned through experience what IP was and wasn't. BTW, I was designated as the corporate expert in IP by the corporate lawyer responsible for it. He freely admitted that I understood considerably more about it than any of his IP lawyers who were theoretically there to help me. Not only was I the designated expert, I wrote the corporate training sylibus for both the contracting personnel and the lawyers to study with.

Many youngins think that because they have the brains and recent education that makes them smarter than those 'older guys' with the brains, education, and experience. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Your law school has filled your head with 'stuff'. Soon you'll be in the real world and realize that more is needed to succeed in life than what you got from your law books. Don't get me wrong, I was the same way when I was young. Full of piss and vinegar and convienced that I could run the world, however, I was fortunate enough to get it through my thick scull that there were things that the more experienced could teach me.

With luck, you'll realize that your shingle proves nothing except that you are ready to learn what the real world has in store for you. Unfortunately, you aren't off to a very good start.
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 5:54:43 PM EDT
Originally Posted By ander254:
Im new to reloading and trying to get something that can grow with me without having to be replaced down the road for a larger setup. I have narrowed it down to either the 550b and the LNL auto indexing press. The question i have is with the dillion, you need the dies plus the conversion kit for each caliber and with the LNL, all you need is the shell plate and dies. I might be wrong but it seems like the LNL is cheaper when it comes to dealing with mulitple calibers. I plan to reload 223, 45acp, 357, and 44mag. If I bought the LNL press, and the dies for all of the calibers, can I just pop out the dies and drop in the different ones when i want to reload for a different caliber? thanks for all ya'lls help.


OP,
I started reloading 14months ago. Never have been around a press before. I decided on the LNL and do not regret it (i believe the dillon is as good and both have pro's and con's). Do i think the learning curve is bigger NO, you can use this press single stage learning each step, if your new as i was you will have to learn and understand as you go. I used this board and one other and asked many questions many time over until i got it right. I mande many mistakes.....didn't have the correct powder drop for the caliber i was loading...and am still learning. The Hornady manual isn't the best, so ask, but there customer service i have found none the better.

Lots of great help here. Read the tacks/threads at beginning of board over and over while learning each step. concentrate on ONE caliber until you understand. ask alot of questions many times until you understand, some will be patient others??

Good luck,
this may become more of an obsession than building your first AR!!
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 7:15:20 PM EDT
Originally Posted By NA_Wreckdiver:

I think anybody getting into reloading should buy one of the single stage "starter kits" (like RCBS's or equivalent)
because it includes all the basic tools you'll need. If you want a progressive as well (and can afford both) ...
go for it. If you load multiple calibers & load a lot... which I think the majority of loaders that stick with it do...
You will ALWAYS want/need a single stage. I'm sure a lot of people do it... but working up a load 5 to 10 rnds
with this charge, another 5 - 10 with that, a few seated this deep a few seated that deep, etc., etc. seems like
a real hassle with a progressive. After all progressives are designed & intended to churn out volume.



Yup.

RCBS kit, learn the basics. Dillon when you have a few thousand under your belt.






Link Posted: 3/26/2009 7:54:24 PM EDT
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 9:51:46 PM EDT
IMHO If you are comparing the Dillon 550 vs LNL AP, there is no choice. The LNL AP all the way. As was mentioned earlier the LNL AP is closer to the Dillon 650 than the Dillon 550. If you were choosing between the LNL AP and the Dillon 650, than that's a huge debate as to which one is better. Personally I don't have either, but I would go with the LNL AP if I were making the choice. I have my own reasons, none of which would probably matter to you. But both machines are great, and would give you years of service..

With that said, I feel I must repeat what has already been said many times about NOT starting with a progressive press, Only I don't feel you should start with a single stage press either. A progressive press is much more complicated than a turret or single stage press, it has nothing to do with how "smart" you are, or weather you are mechanically inclined, etc. It has more to do with proper setup so that you are able to do 5 processes all at once and know that each of the stages are setup perfectly, and that you will only know/learn from experience which will come alot harder starting with a progressive than it would with a turret or single stage press.

I don't think anyone should start with a single stage press because they are simpily too slow and I think alot of people would give up before ever getting their feet wet because of how tedious it is to make a single round on a single stage press. I instead promote the use of turret presses as the best starting point as I feel they give you a much faster process, allow you to learn how to set up dies properly, and introduce you to the whole reloading process, as well as get you ready for the step up to a progressive press. Turret presses can also be used as single stage presses and/or can be used to house your misc dies once you have gone up to a progressive unit. A Lee Classic Turret Press can be had for under $100, so it's not like you would be spending several hundred dollars on a press that would get upgreaded in the near future, It's a cheap investment and will get used for other things once you upgread to progressive. Everything else that you would purchase for use with the Turret press can and will be used with the progressive unit later.

On another note, unless you plan on buying the dillon on-press trimmer you should consider what you plan on doing to trim rifle cases, because you can have a $1000 progressive press but if you don't have thousands of cases preped and ready to load, you will be a sitting duck. I personally think a better investment is a Turret Press and a Giraud power trimmer, because hand trimming takes FOREVER, and if you are wanting a progressive press I would assume you plan on turning out thousands of rounds.. You could even do a Turret Press with a Dillon trimmer if you choose, and the Dillon trimmer could then x-fer over to the progressive unit later on.

Thease are all thing which you will learn/find out along the way to reloading, whatever you have set aside to get into the hobby, double it right now. I guarentee you will need it. There is soo much to learn and soo many things that you wont know/learn untill you come upon them that diving in head first is just not "smart".

Well now you have my $0.02. Take it or leave it, But it's on the table.

-Masta
Link Posted: 3/26/2009 10:22:38 PM EDT
If you've done your research, you know that when you get into this hobby, you may very well have multiple presses for differing needs down the road. Between those two choices, I'd go with the LNL AP for reasons stated above. When (not if) you add a single stage press for loading precision rounds (especially for rifle), look at either the Forster Co-Ax or the Redding Ultramag. If you decide at that point to go with a turret press, look at the Redding T-7.

Before you buy any of the above, take a look at "ABC's of Reloading" and Lee's "Master Reloading" books and the Hodgdon 2009 guide. Also, lurk on some of the other forums, such as M4Carbine.net, SnipersHide, SniperCentral, ReloadersNest, TheFiringLine, TheHighRoad, and AccurateReloading (to name a few), to soak in some additional equipment recommendations. There are a lot of threads along the lines of "if you were starting over, what would you get" that really start narrowing down your choices.

Above all, approach this undertaking with humility, and it may provide a lifetime of continuous learning and enjoyment.
Link Posted: 3/27/2009 6:03:10 AM EDT
Originally Posted By 1903pa:
Your new to reloading so you get a complex piece of equipment! This is like putting a new driver in a New Mustang. You are assembling a component that is going to cause a controlled explosion in your hands. Learning to do it right the first time and every time is more important than buying an expensive press just because you can afford one. i have 8 different presses and have been loading for 45 years.


just because YOU are incapable of doing it doesnt mean others can't do it.

I started with a 650, guess what, no problems.


I wish people would stop saying this...buy what you like-only you know what that is
Link Posted: 3/27/2009 7:48:59 AM EDT
Originally Posted By ander254:
<snip>
If I bought the LNL press, and the dies for all of the calibers, can I just pop out the dies and drop in the different ones when i want to reload for a different caliber? thanks for all ya'lls help.
<snip>


OK, as a newer re-loader I am gonna jump in. . . . . .

OP: I believe the answer to your question is NO. You will still have to buy shellplates.

550b to LnL AP is probably not a fair comparison, as COSteve pointed out, LnL AP vs. 650 is probably a better comparison.
The Dillon people love Dillon and the Hornady people love Hornady. (I am a red koolaid drinker myself)

You will be happy with either press.

This is an interesting read comparing the LnL AP w/ the 650 and Lee Loadmaster.
How I spent my Winter

The discussion has devolved into noob single stage vs. Progressive.
I was caught up into this myself. I opted for the single stage, just for the fact that I don't get the oportunity to shoot as much as I want anyway.
Would I like to be able to crank out 2000 rnds in 5 mins? Yes, unfortunately I have a hard time getting components to make 500 rnds right now .

I have read plenty of posts where new loaders setup a progressive without problem, also posts of new loaders breaking parts, unable to get things adjusted correctly, etc. I figure you have a 50/50 chance of no problems.




Link Posted: 3/27/2009 8:32:24 AM EDT
Originally Posted By wshbrngr:

I have read plenty of posts where new loaders setup a progressive without problem, also posts of new loaders breaking parts, unable to get things adjusted correctly, etc. I figure you have a 50/50 chance of no problems.



It has NOTHING to do with whether a person can physically set up and operate a progressive unit, but rather the knowledge that is learned BEFORE you should operate a progressive unit. Sure there's 1,000's of people that started with a progressive unit and didn't have problems, there’s also 1,000's of people that reload ammo that is out of spec because their dies aren’t setup correctly. (Not saying they are the same people). The fact is my 2 year old could operate a progressive press, but that doesn't mean she should.

The guys that started with a progressive press love to say "Hey I did it; no problems go ahead and do it!" But I guarantee if/when one blows up his/her rifle or something goes wrong, they don't come back on here and post to everyone that they screwed up! Again it's not weather one can physically do it, but rather the knowledge that SHOULD be obtained before one does...

-Masta
Link Posted: 3/27/2009 8:38:55 AM EDT
I would go with the Hornady LNL


But its funny because I when I first got into reloading I had to have the best machine too, capable of doing hundreds of rounds an hour. Now it just sits there while I do 80% of my reloading tasks on an RCBS single stage and RCBS turret.
Link Posted: 3/27/2009 8:40:15 AM EDT
Originally Posted By MastaMarksman:

It has NOTHING to do with whether a person can physically set up and operate a progressive unit, but rather the knowledge that is learned BEFORE you should operate a progressive unit. Sure there's 1,000's of people that started with a progressive unit and didn't have problems, there’s also 1,000's of people that reload ammo that is out of spec because their dies aren’t setup correctly. (Not saying they are the same people). The fact is my 2 year old could operate a progressive press, but that doesn't mean she should.

The guys that started with a progressive press love to say "Hey I did it; no problems go ahead and do it!" But I guarantee if/when one blows up his/her rifle or something goes wrong, they don't come back on here and post to everyone that they screwed up! Again it's not weather one can physically do it, but rather the knowledge that SHOULD be obtained before one does...

-Masta

What is it that prevents one from using a progressive press in the same way you would a single-stage, at least until the aforementioned knowledge is acquired?
Link Posted: 3/27/2009 9:02:27 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/27/2009 9:06:03 AM EDT by wshbrngr]
Originally Posted By MastaMarksman:
Originally Posted By wshbrngr:

I have read plenty of posts where new loaders setup a progressive without problem, also posts of new loaders breaking parts, unable to get things adjusted correctly, etc. I figure you have a 50/50 chance of no problems.



It has NOTHING to do with whether a person can physically set up and operate a progressive unit, but rather the knowledge that is learned BEFORE you should operate a progressive unit. Sure there's 1,000's of people that started with a progressive unit and didn't have problems, there’s also 1,000's of people that reload ammo that is out of spec because their dies aren’t setup correctly. (Not saying they are the same people). The fact is my 2 year old could operate a progressive press, but that doesn't mean she should.

The guys that started with a progressive press love to say "Hey I did it; no problems go ahead and do it!" But I guarantee if/when one blows up his/her rifle or something goes wrong, they don't come back on here and post to everyone that they screwed up! Again it's not weather one can physically do it, but rather the knowledge that SHOULD be obtained before one does...

-Masta


I knew I was gonna get hammered.....
OK I should edit my post from setup, to include setup, load ammo, fire loaded ammo, fire loaded ammo for years w/o problems and never used a single stage.

I tend to agree with the learn on a single stage philosophy, I was just pointing out that there are people that have never used a single stage.
I did not mean to imply that it was a good idea, I was simply trying to answer the OP's question, not make a determination as to whether he should even attempt re-loading in the first place, single stage or not. My apologies if my post appeared that way.

OTOH, I have also read of people screwing up, even blowing up their rifle, with a Single Stage Press.

Oh, and in case anyone has forgotten the question - it was: If I bought the LNL press, and the dies for all of the calibers, can I just pop out the dies and drop in the different ones when i want to reload for a different caliber?
Link Posted: 3/27/2009 10:46:46 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/27/2009 10:50:45 AM EDT by MastaMarksman]
Originally Posted By wshbrngr:
Originally Posted By MastaMarksman:
Originally Posted By wshbrngr:

I have read plenty of posts where new loaders setup a progressive without problem, also posts of new loaders breaking parts, unable to get things adjusted correctly, etc. I figure you have a 50/50 chance of no problems.



It has NOTHING to do with whether a person can physically set up and operate a progressive unit, but rather the knowledge that is learned BEFORE you should operate a progressive unit. Sure there's 1,000's of people that started with a progressive unit and didn't have problems, there’s also 1,000's of people that reload ammo that is out of spec because their dies aren’t setup correctly. (Not saying they are the same people). The fact is my 2 year old could operate a progressive press, but that doesn't mean she should.

The guys that started with a progressive press love to say "Hey I did it; no problems go ahead and do it!" But I guarantee if/when one blows up his/her rifle or something goes wrong, they don't come back on here and post to everyone that they screwed up! Again it's not weather one can physically do it, but rather the knowledge that SHOULD be obtained before one does...

-Masta


I knew I was gonna get hammered.....
OK I should edit my post from setup, to include setup, load ammo, fire loaded ammo, fire loaded ammo for years w/o problems and never used a single stage.

I tend to agree with the learn on a single stage philosophy, I was just pointing out that there are people that have never used a single stage.
I did not mean to imply that it was a good idea, I was simply trying to answer the OP's question, not make a determination as to whether he should even attempt re-loading in the first place, single stage or not. My apologies if my post appeared that way.

OTOH, I have also read of people screwing up, even blowing up their rifle, with a Single Stage Press.

Oh, and in case anyone has forgotten the question - it was: If I bought the LNL press, and the dies for all of the calibers, can I just pop out the dies and drop in the different ones when i want to reload for a different caliber?


I was not intending to "hammer" you. As a matter of fact, my post wasn't even ment for you! My Apologies if you felt it was toward you!

The facts are that reloading isn't rocket science. It's EXTREMELY easy, some people makt it out to be something greater than it is. But what makes it dangerous is that a larger number of people dive off the deep end with out ever first learning to swim.

What is to stop someone from operating a progressive press as a single stage untill they learn what they are doing? Nothing, but most are impatient, and cocky thinking after turning out a few rounds that "I got this" and fire it up in progressive mode. I've read 100's of posts of people making many many rounds THEN stoping to ask "Hey should I have trimmed the cases first?" or "How do I check headspace", etc. That is the wrong time to be asking those questions!

I won't lie, If I had $1000+ to spend on a press from day 1, I too would have probably bought a progressive unit from the start, but thank the lord that he slowed me down and I got a turret press, because I learned ALOT about the whole process. Do I want a progressive now? Sure, because I like everyone else would like to crank out 1000's of rounds. But I am keeping the Turret press because when I produce a round, I know that it is nearly identical to the last 1000 rounds, and the next 1000. I know others will argue, but I don't believe you can get the QC with a progressive press that you can with a single stage or turret, and QC is what stops you from blowing something up.

Sure you can blow up a rifle making ammo on a single stage, or any type of press. But the people that do that would be ALOT more dangerous if they had started on a progressive unit! The mistakes you make on a single stage or turret press can be caught and fixed easily, If you make mistakes on a progressive unit you likely turn out alot more 'mistakes', before catching it.

But it really doesn't matter if 10,000 people tell someone NOT to buy a progressive unit first, if the person buying is set on what he wants, he's going to buy it anyway. Hopefully they will atleast proceed with more caution since being adviced against it.

As for the OP's question, that has been answered over and over again, so unless he has another question, I think that's pretty much settled.

-Masta

Link Posted: 3/27/2009 11:02:01 AM EDT
Originally Posted By MastaMarksman:

I was not intending to "hammer" you. As a matter of fact, my post wasn't even ment for you! My Apologies if you felt it was toward you!

The facts are that reloading isn't rocket science. It's EXTREMELY easy, some people makt it out to be something greater than it is. But what makes it dangerous is that a larger number of people dive off the deep end with out ever first learning to swim.

What is to stop someone from operating a progressive press as a single stage untill they learn what they are doing? Nothing, but most are impatient, and cocky thinking after turning out a few rounds that "I got this" and fire it up in progressive mode. I've read 100's of posts of people making many many rounds THEN stoping to ask "Hey should I have trimmed the cases first?" or "How do I check headspace", etc. That is the wrong time to be asking those questions!

I won't lie, If I had $1000+ to spend on a press from day 1, I too would have probably bought a progressive unit from the start, but thank the lord that he slowed me down and I got a turret press, because I learned ALOT about the whole process. Do I want a progressive now? Sure, because I like everyone else would like to crank out 1000's of rounds. But I am keeping the Turret press because when I produce a round, I know that it is nearly identical to the last 1000 rounds, and the next 1000. I know others will argue, but I don't believe you can get the QC with a progressive press that you can with a single stage or turret, and QC is what stops you from blowing something up.

Sure you can blow up a rifle making ammo on a single stage, or any type of press. But the people that do that would be ALOT more dangerous if they had started on a progressive unit! The mistakes you make on a single stage or turret press can be caught and fixed easily, If you make mistakes on a progressive unit you likely turn out alot more 'mistakes', before catching it.

But it really doesn't matter if 10,000 people tell someone NOT to buy a progressive unit first, if the person buying is set on what he wants, he's going to buy it anyway. Hopefully they will atleast proceed with more caution since being adviced against it.

As for the OP's question, that has been answered over and over again, so unless he has another question, I think that's pretty much settled.

-Masta


I don't think I'd dispute anything you've said above, save for the item hilighted in red. $1,000 for a progressive? $399 for a L-N-L (and I'm not even counting the savings due to the free bullets, which saved me over $120) vs...say...$100-$200 for a good single-stage or turret. The cost of all the other goodies is essentially the same no matter which route you go.
Link Posted: 3/27/2009 12:36:45 PM EDT
Originally Posted By DanParker:
Originally Posted By MastaMarksman:

I was not intending to "hammer" you. As a matter of fact, my post wasn't even ment for you! My Apologies if you felt it was toward you!

The facts are that reloading isn't rocket science. It's EXTREMELY easy, some people makt it out to be something greater than it is. But what makes it dangerous is that a larger number of people dive off the deep end with out ever first learning to swim.

What is to stop someone from operating a progressive press as a single stage untill they learn what they are doing? Nothing, but most are impatient, and cocky thinking after turning out a few rounds that "I got this" and fire it up in progressive mode. I've read 100's of posts of people making many many rounds THEN stoping to ask "Hey should I have trimmed the cases first?" or "How do I check headspace", etc. That is the wrong time to be asking those questions!

I won't lie, If I had $1000+ to spend on a press from day 1, I too would have probably bought a progressive unit from the start, but thank the lord that he slowed me down and I got a turret press, because I learned ALOT about the whole process. Do I want a progressive now? Sure, because I like everyone else would like to crank out 1000's of rounds. But I am keeping the Turret press because when I produce a round, I know that it is nearly identical to the last 1000 rounds, and the next 1000. I know others will argue, but I don't believe you can get the QC with a progressive press that you can with a single stage or turret, and QC is what stops you from blowing something up.

Sure you can blow up a rifle making ammo on a single stage, or any type of press. But the people that do that would be ALOT more dangerous if they had started on a progressive unit! The mistakes you make on a single stage or turret press can be caught and fixed easily, If you make mistakes on a progressive unit you likely turn out alot more 'mistakes', before catching it.

But it really doesn't matter if 10,000 people tell someone NOT to buy a progressive unit first, if the person buying is set on what he wants, he's going to buy it anyway. Hopefully they will atleast proceed with more caution since being adviced against it.

As for the OP's question, that has been answered over and over again, so unless he has another question, I think that's pretty much settled.

-Masta


I don't think I'd dispute anything you've said above, save for the item hilighted in red. $1,000 for a progressive? $399 for a L-N-L (and I'm not even counting the savings due to the free bullets, which saved me over $120) vs...say...$100-$200 for a good single-stage or turret. The cost of all the other goodies is essentially the same no matter which route you go.


No doubt, but when I started I had planned on about $300. Well, by the time I collected all the items I KNEW about, and all the items I found out later that I needed, I was into it for atleast double what I origionally planned. You can get a $400 LNL, but you will be into it near $1000 by the time all is said and done. That Is why I said earlier, whatever you plan on spending now, double it. It happens to everyone.

Also, I collected many things over several months before I ever made my first round.

-Masta

Link Posted: 3/28/2009 9:30:06 AM EDT


[/quote]

I don't think I'd dispute anything you've said above, save for the item hilighted in red. $1,000 for a progressive? $399 for a L-N-L (and I'm not even counting the savings due to the free bullets, which saved me over $120) vs...say...$100-$200 for a good single-stage or turret. The cost of all the other goodies is essentially the same no matter which route you go.[/quote]

if you are cranking out rounds at 1000 per hour you are going to need the girud trimmer and that is like $350 alone. two items and you are at $750. a good scale is at least another $100. what does a case and bullet feeder cost nowadays? i think his $1000 is conservative in a progressive high speed environment.

the op would probably be best served with a turret as he is going to need it for case prep anyways.
Link Posted: 3/28/2009 9:45:43 AM EDT
Originally Posted By joedapro:

I don't think I'd dispute anything you've said above, save for the item hilighted in red. $1,000 for a progressive? $399 for a L-N-L (and I'm not even counting the savings due to the free bullets, which saved me over $120) vs...say...$100-$200 for a good single-stage or turret. The cost of all the other goodies is essentially the same no matter which route you go.


if you are cranking out rounds at 1000 per hour you are going to need the girud trimmer and that is like $350 alone. two items and you are at $750. a good scale is at least another $100. what does a case and bullet feeder cost nowadays? i think his $1000 is conservative in a progressive high speed environment.

the op would probably be best served with a turret as he is going to need it for case prep anyways.

(I fixed your quote formatting for you.) You seem to be missing the point, and have not read any of my posts for context. I have a L-N-L, but have not shelled out anywhere near $1,000 for equipment. Why? Because as I've stated multiple times now, I'm going to be using it like a single-stage for quite a while until I'm confident in my abilities to begin loading in progressive mode. Using it in that way there is nothing else I need to spend money on for now that I wouldn't also need to buy had I gone with a single-stage instead. Therefore, one most definitely does NOT need to spend much more to buy a good progressive than on a single-stage or turret to begin with. In my case, the net difference was about $80 (accounting for the savings on bullets due to the L-N-L promotion.) If one were going to jump into the deep-end and begin doing high-volume reloading on Day 1 then yes, the higher outlay of cash is in order. But that's not what has been proposed. We've been talking about buying a progressive, but not using is as such right away.
Link Posted: 3/28/2009 10:00:53 AM EDT
Originally Posted By ander254:
Im new to reloading and trying to get something that can grow with me without having to be replaced down the road for a larger setup. I have narrowed it down to either the 550b and the LNL auto indexing press. The question i have is with the dillion, you need the dies plus the conversion kit for each caliber and with the LNL, all you need is the shell plate and dies. I might be wrong but it seems like the LNL is cheaper when it comes to dealing with mulitple calibers. I plan to reload 223, 45acp, 357, and 44mag. If I bought the LNL press, and the dies for all of the calibers, can I just pop out the dies and drop in the different ones when i want to reload for a different caliber? thanks for all ya'lls help.


I have no experience with the Hornady.

I've loaded literally tens of thousands of round on my 550, from 9mm, 45, 5.56, 7.62, and 338 Lapua Magnum. While the 550 is not ideal for rifle it handles bulk pistol ammo production very well.

I don't load rifle calibers in full progressive mode but rather as a turret press. It produces Camp Perry / National Champion grade ammo. I've found that for precision rifle ammo I've had to add a Redding T-7 to the stable as well (the 338 Lapua is a bit long for the 550. Do-able, but probably not the right equipment).

It doesn't take long to swap out the Dillon heads, making it very fast to do conversions to load different calibers. You can load 100 pistol cartridges in ten to fifteen minutes depending on your technique.
Link Posted: 3/28/2009 10:05:16 AM EDT
Originally Posted By freightdog:
I just started reloading a few months ago with a 550B and have had no problems.... I read several books, took a lot of advice from reading this forum and i'm really anal about measuring and weighing over and over.... you won't have any issues as long as you treat the process with respect and learn all you can.... I see no valid reason to start off with anything but nice equipment....


+1, me too.
Link Posted: 3/28/2009 11:07:19 AM EDT

Originally Posted By zyx5432:
Originally Posted By freightdog:
I just started reloading a few months ago with a 550B and have had no problems.... I read several books, took a lot of advice from reading this forum and i'm really anal about measuring and weighing over and over.... you won't have any issues as long as you treat the process with respect and learn all you can.... I see no valid reason to start off with anything but nice equipment....

+1, me too.

As did I. I found the 550B could work just fine as a single stage by just processing one case at a time. Then when I got comfortable after about 30 cases, I loaded up the shellplate and had at it. 70K+ rds loaded later, I never regretted starting on a 550B.
Link Posted: 3/28/2009 1:23:58 PM EDT
I don't see anything wrong with skipping the single stage reloader. I started with a progressive and after 15 years, I still don't own one.

I have no experience with a LNL. But I can tell you that when it came to upgrading my 550 to 650, the 550 sold quickly and for top dollar on the EE. I've got nothing against the LNL, but for my money, it's Dillon. If it ain't broken, don't break it.

Also, with the huge marketshare that Dillon has, it is easy to find used upgrades and accessories.
Top Top