Recommendations for a Powder Measure


March 31, 2007, 09:53 AM
Hi All,

I recently started reloading,currently only handguns (.44sp/mag, .38sp/.357mag). I've been using a Lee HandPress and only load moderate amounts of ammo. Eventually I might want to invest in a turret press, but for now the hand press works well for me.

Currently, I use the Lee plastic powder measure dippers to measure my powder. However, I'm in the market for a more convenient way to measure out powder for my loads. The problem that I've found with the Lee plastic dippers is that they are not convenient for loading low volume charges. For example, my loading manual specifies a max of 5.2 grains of Unique for a .38 special load, yet the smallest Lee dipper that I have in my set will measure 2.7 grains per scoop. If I use two scoops with the smallest dipper, I will have measured 5.4 grains of Unique.

I'd like to find something that would let me safely, accurately and consistently measure these lower powder charges. The dippers are easy to use, and I figure if I use 5.4 grains of Unique, I'm OK since I'm firing the .38 special loads from a .357 mag revolver. However, I'd like to be able to measure lower volume loads of Unique in a consistent, accurate manner.

I like Lee products - anyone have any feedback on their other powder measurers?

If you enjoyed reading about "Recommendations for a Powder Measure" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!
March 31, 2007, 10:33 AM
do you have the full set of lee dippers. sounds kinda odd.
i use the lee dippers, same time though i have a digital scale.

lee n. field
March 31, 2007, 10:37 AM
The RCBS Little Dandy ( might be good for you.

Per Midway:
Perfect for handgun shooters and select small-caliber rifle reloaders. There are 28 interchangeable fixed charge powder rotors available (sold separately). Functions with any popular smokeless powder. There's no readjustment needed after change over. May be used hand-held or bench mounted with the optional powder measure stand.

Exactly that. You don't need to buy the whole set of rotors, just what you need.

March 31, 2007, 10:44 AM
I just got a new RCBS Uniflow and it works GREAT on Unique. I have a Lee Perfect measure also. It works well on some powders most of the time.

Check out the Lee Classic Turret press kit at Cabela's. It is inexpensive and works well, and comes with the updated powder measure. I got one not too long ago, and it too works great for 9mm and .38/.357 rounds.

Check out the video demo at Lee.

Good Luck, and happy reloading.

March 31, 2007, 11:41 AM
Here's another option for a Classic Turret kit--I think it is a better deal than other suppliers--you get more stuff, including dies--

I find the Pro Auto Disk Powder measure from Lee to be very accurate for Unique or other flake powders down to about 4 gr. Then they tend to bridge and clump and can cause light charges. You can also get an adjustable charge bar for the Auto Disk and can really dial in a charge--if you want 5.2 gr of Unique then with a little trial and error and weighing the charges you can set it for exactly that.

The other option is to get the full set of dippers--Kempf has a real good price on them too but I would supplement them with a Lee Safety Scale, which is inexpensive but very accurate, to make sure you are in the ballpark on the charge you want.

I have a Classic Turret with the Lee Safety Prime and the Pro Auto Disk and wouldn't trade it for any other turret press. It will last a lifetime.

Art Eatman
March 31, 2007, 12:55 PM
I use an ancient RCCBS powder measure. Every time I've checked against the scale it's been right on, just as at the last check.


Smokey Joe
March 31, 2007, 01:09 PM
Irv Jr--My RCBS Uniflow works great for large powder charges, for rifle reloading. However, when I got into loading for my .357Magnum, for target loads, I found that it had trouble with very small powder charges, like 3.4 grains of W231.

Fooled around with the RCBS, unsatisfactorily, for a while, until I happened upon a Lyman #50 powder measure which has 3 separate adjustments to its measuring cylinder--Huge, Small, and Really Tiny.

So, for reloading for target pistol, I use my Lyman #50, and it works really well. Got it used @ a gun show.

The Bushmaster
March 31, 2007, 01:27 PM
There is such a wide variaty of ways to measure powder from dippers (I plumb forgot I still have my Lee set of dippers) to elctronic scales that dispense powder onto a scale that I would recommend that you do a bit of research to determine just what you want your scale to do for you. You have dippers, balance beam scales of all kinds and electronic scales by themselves to the dispensing kind. Have fun...And luck...:D

I have the dippers, a 5-0-5 RCBS beam and a RCBS Powder pro electronic scale. I use the electronic the most...Easier for 64 year old eyes to read and it's quick.

March 31, 2007, 05:42 PM
Thanks for the many replies fellas. I've only started reloading very recently.

I'm going to look at the scales and powder dispensers you mentioned.

I definitley want to move up to a Lee Turret press in the future so that I can have all of my dies installed and set up in the plates. Right now I have to install/uninstall each a die every time I move to a different step in the process.

March 31, 2007, 06:08 PM
Just get the Lee powder measure. They only cost $25 or so, and will throw more accurate charges than other brands costing much more.

March 31, 2007, 06:13 PM

Is that the Lee Perfect Powder Measurer you're recommending or the Auto Disc? I've been thinking about getting this device. Does it work well with Unique powder?

This is the powder measure that I was originally planning to buy, but I figured I'd start with the cheaper dippers first and see how well they worked.

March 31, 2007, 06:17 PM

It gets no better than this, IMHO . . .

March 31, 2007, 06:24 PM
That's the one, the Lee Perfect Powder Measure. I use 231, 296, 540 and Accurate #9 for my handgun loads, and 4350, Varget, RL15, RL22 for my rifle, and it performs very well with everything I tried. It will consistently throw within 1/10th of a grain even with extruded powders.

March 31, 2007, 08:13 PM
I like the Redding measures with both chambers, large and small, to cover both rifle and pistol.

March 31, 2007, 09:14 PM
Most of the powder measures are the same. But the biggest difference - micrometer adjustment. The Redding & Hornady upper end measures come with these. RCBS - have to purchase seperately.

I use my Uniflow with large micrometer to measure HS6 loads for my 357 & 44 IMR3031 for middle bore rifles. Works excellent.

Some powders will always require you to trickle in the last few grains (IMR3031!!!). Ball the 7th or 8th are done...just keep pulling the handle. I DO check a random sampling of every 50 rounds.

I visually check EVERY pistol round - no double charges for me please!!!!

I also visually check every rifle round.

....after is only your weapon, hands, eyes, and life.

If you enjoyed reading about "Recommendations for a Powder Measure" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!