550 or 650 for 9mm and .223 ? ? ?


May 1, 2007, 10:40 AM
I'm looking for a progressive reloading press. I've been reloading for years, but currently only have a Rockchucker. I once had a Dillon 550, which I had to sell when I moved cross country.

I want to either get a 550 or 650. Not interested in Lee, LNL or others even though they may be good. I like Dillon...

I shoot 9mm and .223 only.

I shoot 300-400 rounds a week of 9mm.

I like to shoot, and find little joy in loading 50 rounds of 9mm in a night. So I need a quicker alternative for at least pistol loading.

I really have no interest in batch reloading for any other calibers. All of my .223 shooting is out of AR's, and most of that is for highpower matches - so it needs to be "precision" (at least in HP terms).

My guess is I should just stick with a single stage for my match 223 loads, but was thinking it'd be nice to load some blasting loads on a 650. I plan on shooting more 223 plinking loads, but with a single stage, it gets pretty slow for plinking ammo.

How many load .223 on a Dillon 650?

Is switching calibers easy on the 650 like the 550?

Is loading 223 on a 550 a lot faster?

So, should I get the 550 for 9mm AND 223


Get a 650 (with casefeeder) for 9mm and load all my 223 stuff on a single stage?

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May 1, 2007, 11:48 AM

I would personally recommend the 650 over the others since the price isn't that great between them. When I bought my second progressive 6 months ago to replace my Lee LoadMaster I looked at all the progressives out there in my price rage and decided on two the The Dillon 650 and the Hornady AP L-n-L. I shoot as much pistol as you do and I ended up going with the Hornady only because extra shell and case feeder plates were available locally. Since you want a Dillon I definitely would go with the 650 unless you can spring for 1050; now that is a press like nothing else out there! The 550 a good press but I think it is just too over priced when compared to the 650 or the Hornady; now if it was a $100 cheaper then it would be a contender in my book.

May 1, 2007, 01:13 PM
Get the 650 and get a Hornady or RCBS case activated powder drop and either a Hornady or RCBS Uniflow powder measure with a micrometer to make setting up your powder measure a lot easier:






May 1, 2007, 02:05 PM
Decide if you want a casefeeder in the near future. If yes, 650. If no, 550. Good choice on going Dillon again.

Unless you plan to load extruded (IMR) rifle powder, the dillon powder measure works just fine and is preferable for pistol ammo in my experience.

May 1, 2007, 03:48 PM
Get a 650. and a casefeeder.

I load .223, 6MM Remngton, .308, .30-30, and.30-06 on a 650.

Where did you get the idea that loading .223 on a 550 would be faster?:confused: It isn't nearly as fast.

As for precision, I load 6MM Remington varmint rounds on a 650! 3/8 MOA groups!

Idaho Sharpshooter
May 1, 2007, 04:54 PM
just my personal experience, but I have owned Dillon Square-Deal B's for about fifteen years. The 45acp has loaded over 100,000 rounds, and the 9mm about twice that. I can reload four hundred rounds pretty easy in an hour on the SDB and can't accidentally doublecharge. Get the SDB and save up for the 550/650. The 650 is maintenance intensive, seems like I'm always fiddling with something on it. Now there is a case feeder option on the 550.

Sharps Rifle Shooter

May 1, 2007, 07:53 PM
I personally load both on my 550 and I can load ~300-400/hour of 9mm and about the same of .223. I got my press used with a lot of goodies for ~$600:D Switching from 9mm to .223 takes about 2 minutes max since they both use small primers. I got several tool head with my press and two powder measures. These make the switch really easy. .223 eats time in the case prep step, measuring, trimming, and camfering. Several people I know really like the 650 with the case feeder, but I'm not convinced it's the next thing to sliced bread. In talking with them, when the case feeder works it's great, but a real pain when things get cross ways. One more thing to worry about in my opinion, I can feed my 9mm, .45ACP, .38, .223, and 7.62 habits fed just fine with my 550. :D Look online for a used one, you may get a few goodies to go along with the press.

May 1, 2007, 10:13 PM
I don't own a Dillon, but if I was to buy one it would be the 650. The press I own now has auto indexing and to think of having to manually index seems like to much extra hassle for me. I have talked to many people that say the manual index is no big deal.

May 2, 2007, 12:46 AM

One thing I forgot to add to my original post was do get the case feeder contrary to what's been said they do work very well. I have one on my Hornady which I swear was stolen from Dillon and it works flawlessly on the three calibers I load on my progressive: 9mm, .40 S&W, and .233 with 22-250 to be added soon. By the way if you do decide on the the 550 Dillon has a case feeder for it too. Just an another FYI -- I paid $700 for my Hornady brand new with the case feeder and all the bells and whistles, some of which I bought from Dillon, and that was equipped for thee calibers mentioned above. The Dillon 650 for the exact same configuration was $850, which IMO makes either of these two the better deal over the 550.

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