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Old 01-21-2020, 08:39 PM   #1
BLACKFINTURKEY
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Default What progressive press?

Tinkering with getting a progressive press to load mainly pistol ammo on but possibly 223-300 blackout pistol cal will be 9/10mm. Iíve only ever loaded in a single stage. What do yíall recommend or suggest?
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Old 01-21-2020, 08:45 PM   #2
cblackall
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Dillon would be my first choice. Great machines, and great customer service. They’ve got a lot of aftermarket support as well. I’ve spent a lot of time behind the 650 and the Super 1050. I’ve loaded on the Hornady Lock N Load as well. It loads ammo just fine. I just prefer the Dillons.
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Old 01-21-2020, 08:47 PM   #3
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I use a Dillon 550 and live it. You really can’t go wrong with a Dillon.
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Old 01-21-2020, 09:10 PM   #4
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I’ve had three. Dillon 650 is what I own now and will never have anything else. Love it.
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Old 01-21-2020, 10:15 PM   #5
Billy Bad Bass
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I currently have 2 Dillon 650s. The Dillon progressives are hard to beat. Depending on volume there is the Square Deal B, RL550 , XL650 (now replaced by the 750) and the 1050. I've had each of the first three and they are all great machines. There is an ad on THF for 2 Square Deal Bs right now. He is asking 2x too much in my opinion but they are a place to start.
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Old 01-21-2020, 10:26 PM   #6
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I use a Lee progressive press. It'll load all pistol cartridges and .223 sizes. It's really fast and accurate
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Old 01-21-2020, 10:58 PM   #7
double bogey
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I have a 650xl, and a square deal b. I picked up the sq. deal on ebay for $225. Load .44 mag with it, and mostly .45acp on the 650.

Still load most rifle rounds on a single stage, actually a lee classic turret, just handy to have both dies set up. Stick powders don't measure well by volume, and I load for precision.
5.56 is pretty cheap buying bulk. I load for 5.56 bolt action.
9mm isn't a lot of savings either.
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Old 01-21-2020, 11:10 PM   #8
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Really depends on how much you want to load and what rate of production

4 factors in progressive
Auto indexing, number of stations, change overs and case fee re

Auto indexing means the shell plate advances with you working the press. The sq deal and 550 are manual index. You have to rotate the shell. The 750 and Hornady lnl ap are auto index. As you work the press it rotates the shell plate. This allows your production rate to be much higher

Number of stations
Sq deal and 550 @are 4 stations
750 and lnl ap are 5 stations so you can run a powder check

Change overs
Dillion has change over tool heads on 550 and 750. These are nice but makes change overs more expensive. The Hornady has sleeves which is cheaper but not quite as fast

Case feeder
Some press can take a case feeder others canít

Either Hornady or Dillion will work. I would watch ultimate reloaded. He has some great videos going over each press.

Realize that you start with press but accessories add up quickly. You need to shoot a lot of rounds to justify the purchase imo
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Old 01-21-2020, 11:17 PM   #9
sierracharlie338
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Dillon 550 or 650


Sierracharlie outÖ
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Old 01-21-2020, 11:39 PM   #10
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Dillon, at least a 450, possibly a 550. I have had both a Square Deal, which is only for pistols and I have a 450 now. Don't waste any money on a Square Deal, you will regret it, once you get a Dillon.
With a Dillon, you have blocks, you set your dies up in. So once you have set the dies up, you don't need to touch them again. Just buy enough blocks for each caliber you load. Then just change the block out and the shell plate, if needed. Much faster than a single stage, to switch to a different caliber and get loading. The primer tube you naturally have a large and a small primer adaptor tubes and piece the seats the primers.

Now, if you keep your eyes open, you will likely find a Dillon 450 or 550 on facebook market place, cheap. I have found two 450s and one 550 on facebook market place in the past two months. I think one or more may still be available, I am pretty sure the last one I saw, was only a few days ago, to a week ago. You can load with other loading presses to get some experience in, then get a Dillon and use it and you will see after you load three or four different calibers, that there is no reason to consider any other brand. I started out with a RCBS Rock Chucker, then got a Square Deal to load pistol ammo, since at the time, I figured I would only load pistol ammo in large numbers. After having the Square deal for a short time and seeing the advantages of a Dillon, the Square Deal got put in the cabinet and I got a 450, I have had the 450 for probably 28 years. I keep trying to tell my buddy to get one, makes loading so much easier, much less of a hassle, to switch calibers. I used to know guys many years ago, that had many RCBS Rock Chuckers and or Lee presses, each set up for one caliber. They had to have multiple long loading benches to mount all of those presses, but they did not have to reset them up every time they wanted to load a different caliber. With a Dillon, you don't need that much space, still faster to load a lot of rounds, than having 10 different presses each set up for a different caliber. I have been thinking about buying another 450 or a 550, then setting one up to load calibers that use small primers and the other set up for large primers. If I keep seeing those cheap 450 and 550s, I probably will do that.

As for the idea, that using a single stage, you will get more precise ammo, nope. I do drop all of my powder charges by hand, I used to use the charging bar for pistol ammo years ago, when I was loading a lot of ammo, but I have not used a charging bar in probably 20 years. Even though it's a four stage press, I resize and deprime a case, clean the primer pocket, if it is a case that has been fired, resize the case, then chamfer the case. Then reprime the case. I don't move each case to the next station, they all get that done to them. Then I start measuring powder, dumping the charge and then seating the bullets as I charge each case. Too many times over the years, I have had multiple cases full of powder and had the tray they were in knocked over. So I charge the case and immediately seat the bullet. Much less chance of the powder getting spilled. But doing it the way I do, using a multistage press, I don't have to set up the resizing die, then resize and prime all the cases, Then remove the sizing die, then set up the bullet seating die. Then charge and seat the bullets. I leave the dies set up. Then when I want to load a different caliber, I grab that block, with the dies for that caliber, swap it out, then swap shell plate if needed and possibly the primer tube and the primer seater, if needed. It's much faster than a single stage and just as accurate.

Last edited by RifleBowPistol; 01-21-2020 at 11:51 PM.
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Old 01-21-2020, 11:57 PM   #11
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Dillon 550 or 650.
I have a Square Deal for sale. It’s a good press but I don’t use it.

I have a 550 and it works very well for me. The only other one I would consider is a 650/750, but I swap calibers quite a bit.

I had a Lee progressive for about 3 days and sent it back to midway. I like lee dies, casting equipment, single stage and turret presses, but the progressive sucks.
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Old 01-22-2020, 12:02 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TxLonghorn View Post
Really depends on how much you want to load and what rate of production

4 factors in progressive
Auto indexing, number of stations, change overs and case fee re

Auto indexing means the shell plate advances with you working the press. The sq deal and 550 are manual index. You have to rotate the shell. The 750 and Hornady lnl ap are auto index. As you work the press it rotates the shell plate. This allows your production rate to be much higher

Number of stations
Sq deal and 550 @are 4 stations
750 and lnl ap are 5 stations so you can run a powder check

Change overs
Dillion has change over tool heads on 550 and 750. These are nice but makes change overs more expensive. The Hornady has sleeves which is cheaper but not quite as fast

Case feeder
Some press can take a case feeder others canít

Either Hornady or Dillion will work. I would watch ultimate reloaded. He has some great videos going over each press.

Realize that you start with press but accessories add up quickly. You need to shoot a lot of rounds to justify the purchase imo
SD is auto index. Itís just a small work area to place cases and bullets.
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Old 01-22-2020, 12:28 AM   #13
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Yes, the square deal is auto index, and it is a Dillon.

The only thing I don't like about it is the small footprint of the shell plate.
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Old 01-22-2020, 01:12 AM   #14
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Yes definitely a Dillon
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Old 01-22-2020, 07:55 AM   #15
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For loading pistol and revolver ammunition you just can't beat the Dillon Square Deal B. Unless you go with the case feed on the 650/750. I have five of them set up for my most used calibers. If I'm gonna load 500 or more rounds I'll use the 650's.






In your situation I'd get the Square Deal B and load the .223 and blackout on the single stage. You can always upgrade to a 650/750 later.
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Old 01-22-2020, 08:22 AM   #16
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I have been using the Hornady LnL for several years. I load my pistol rounds and 223/300blk bulk ammo on it. I have a Lee Single Stage press as well that I load the rest of my rifle loads on.

Once I get the LnL setup and running I can load about 500 rounds of 9mm in an hour. I have a bullet feeding die (pistol) and some plastic tubes that I pre-load with projectiles. At that point I am only feeding empty cases into the press.
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Old 01-22-2020, 09:53 AM   #17
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If you research progressive reloaders you will find none of them are perfect. Most polls will show Dillon 1st, then Hornady, then RCBS, then Lee. But they all have some issues.
I only own Dillon's, but most agree they are top of the line, All of them will get it done. Some require fiddling with some to keep running.

My dislikes of the Dillon are primer handling. Both new primers, and spent primers. My 650's spent primer chute clogs occasionally, and it feeds a new primer whether there is a case ready or not. They have a tray that catches the new primers that don't get used, but I modified mine with tape to make it taller, it is annoying when new primers would end up on the floor.

And as I mentioned earlier, the Sq. Deal B shell plate is tiny, and you must insert an empty case, and a bullet each pull of the handle. The 650 has a bullet feeder, but the hopper is an accessory you have to buy. The press shouldn't be sold without the hopper. But its sweet to load on.
Put a bullet on a case, crank the handle, put another bullet on the case etc, etc. Stop every 10 to 15 mins and add another 100 primers, and empty your loaded round hopper, and fill the case feeder. The volume powder measure works very well with most pistol powders, as long as they are spherical. Flake and stick powders don't measure well by volume.
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Old 01-23-2020, 07:56 AM   #18
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Unless you are very mechanically inclined and like to tinker dang near every time you load, avoid the Lee, especially the small primer calibers. Constant issues with primers flipping or going in sideways. I also have a lot of no charge loads using the lee powder measure that comes with them, despite trying all the tips and tricks I've found online. I've got 2. I've pretty much gotten to where I don't use them anymore. I can run 100 9MM on my autoindexing turret press in less than 30 minutes.
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Old 01-23-2020, 10:03 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bearintex View Post
Unless you are very mechanically inclined and like to tinker dang near every time you load, avoid the Lee, especially the small primer calibers. Constant issues with primers flipping or going in sideways. I also have a lot of no charge loads using the lee powder measure that comes with them, despite trying all the tips and tricks I've found online. I've got 2. I've pretty much gotten to where I don't use them anymore. I can run 100 9MM on my autoindexing turret press in less than 30 minutes.
I have never owned a lee progressive. But I do have a classic cast turret that I got on the way to going full progressive. Shells with no powder from the powder drop system got old. Much faster than single stage, but I got tired of bullets stuck in the barrel, not to mention the possible dangers. Researched and procrastinated for several months before pulling the trigger. Never looked back, and if you decide to sell, the Dillon will have the best resale value.
I still use the turret a lot, but only for the convenience of having both dies set up at all times. Also use it for load workups. You will always have a need for a single stage press, I can imagine the hassle of load workups on a progressive.
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Old 01-23-2020, 10:12 AM   #20
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I have two 650's that I bought when I was shooting USPSA and IDPA. I think Dillon has a new 750 press out but the reviews are mixed. Their no BS warranty is just that. One of the few companies that really stand behind their products. There are several Facebook groups that discuss Dillon products and from time to time have used equipment for sale.
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Old 01-23-2020, 10:31 AM   #21
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I have 2 Dillon 550's. One has been sent back once to be refurbished after untold thousands of rounds. I would still choose the 550 because of their customer support. The 650 is a good machine, especially if you are going to dedicate it to one caliber/load. I also have two older RCBS 4x4 machines that I use Dillon expander/charging dies and powder measures on. I prefer manual index machines.
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Old 01-23-2020, 10:31 AM   #22
TxLonghorn
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If you go 750 or lnl ap and want that rate you will be buying a lot more things

Case feeder
Primer tube filler
Trimmer
Bullet feeder maybe


How many rounds do you realistically shoot?
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Old 01-23-2020, 10:37 AM   #23
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Oh Man....I thought this was the Current Issues thread. I was expecting to see Rachel Maddow and Don Lemon. Good luck with the loading stuff.
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Old 01-23-2020, 10:52 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bearintex View Post
Unless you are very mechanically inclined and like to tinker dang near every time you load, avoid the Lee, especially the small primer calibers. Constant issues with primers flipping or going in sideways. I also have a lot of no charge loads using the lee powder measure that comes with them, despite trying all the tips and tricks I've found online. I've got 2. I've pretty much gotten to where I don't use them anymore. I can run 100 9MM on my autoindexing turret press in less than 30 minutes.
I'll second your post on the Lee Pro 1000. I've got one and it seems I have to mess with something every time. The priming system is the biggest problem. I have an issue nearly every time with primers turning over or something and it doesn't matter whether they are small or large primers.

The powder measuring system isn't that precise either. I had to experiment
with several different diameters before I finally found one that would throw pretty close to my load recipe. I've ordered an adjustable powder measure
device for it, but have not had time to play with it.


That being said, once I get the kinks out (everytime) as long as I'm paying close attention, I can usually catch the problem before it occurs.

I'm going to get a Dillon at some point.
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Old 01-23-2020, 12:07 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SabreKiller View Post
I'll second your post on the Lee Pro 1000. I've got one and it seems I have to mess with something every time. The priming system is the biggest problem. I have an issue nearly every time with primers turning over or something and it doesn't matter whether they are small or large primers.

The powder measuring system isn't that precise either. I had to experiment
with several different diameters before I finally found one that would throw pretty close to my load recipe. I've ordered an adjustable powder measure
device for it, but have not had time to play with it.


That being said, once I get the kinks out (everytime) as long as I'm paying close attention, I can usually catch the problem before it occurs.

I'm going to get a Dillon at some point.

I have a Square Deal for sale...
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Old 01-23-2020, 03:33 PM   #26
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Tons of info here and I’ll be honest I haven’t even got to read half of it, seems like Dillon is the place to be.
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Old 01-23-2020, 05:12 PM   #27
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Dillon 750 with case feeder and maybe even a mr bullet feeder.
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Old 01-24-2020, 11:19 PM   #28
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If you decide to go with a model that offers a case feeder, pony up the extra cash. They’re not cheap, but it makes a world of difference and speeds up the process significantly. Then, all you have to worry about is placing a bullet on the case each time you pull the handle.
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Old 01-25-2020, 10:37 AM   #29
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difference between 550 and 650
550: put case in, put bullet in, handle down and up, advance table. 4 steps per bullet

650/750 with case feeder: put bullet on, handle down and up. 2 steps and no chance to double charge
5 stations on the 650 seats and crimps at different stations, so die set up is easier

I know a couple guys with 550's, and they are great loaders but the reasons I went with the 650 are less steps and better powder safety.
The sq. deal b auto advances the table also, but doesn't have a powder check station, but the auto advance keeps double charges out. You could still get a no charge possibly, but I have not seen it. Even though the dies are carbide, I lube the .44 mag cases so it operates easier.
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Old 01-25-2020, 11:03 AM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TacticalCowboy View Post
I have a Square Deal for sale...
Details?
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Old 01-25-2020, 11:22 AM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bearintex View Post
Details?
Set up for 45 acp at the moment. $350 shipped
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Old 01-25-2020, 11:30 AM   #32
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Dillon 550. Had one for 20+ years, it's simple and works great. Caliber changes are quick and easy.
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