I love BLUE!!!


September 7, 2008, 10:38 AM
I sold off my whole LEE setup because I was tired of the little quirks it required to get a decent amount of rounds done....I told the wife F IT! I will go back to buying ammo, which resulted in the stank eye of death. She immediately asked about the several thousand .223/45/40/9mm/308 I had un assembled and the costs associated to let them collect dust...So after some discussion permisson was granted to look at dillon....

After researching and researching I settled on the 550b using my lee dies, and a seperate tool head for each caliber...Got it from brianenos.com and HOLY CRAP what a difference....Took about 1 hour to set all up, mounted it to a workmate and I was cranking out 45 loads...Only ran small batches of each but mant the consistency is what wowed me...With the lee the powder charge would vary all over the place (i used both systems perfect & disk) the dillon just spit outs the same thing over and over again...

Yes it has cost about 3 times what the whole lee setup I was using cost but man the ease and reliability is night and day...Now the wife is happy and reloading is fun again!! BTW if anyone is in doubt about if the dillon is worth the price once I picked up the 550b the build quality is NIGHT AND DAY...this thing is made to last a long time!!!

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Der Verge
September 7, 2008, 10:54 AM
What is it they say "You get what you pay for"

Not to completely knock Lee, because some of their products are good. Some, I even think, could be the best out there. Their caliber specific trimmers are great, the chamfer/deburr tool is great, and their dies are generally very good. Their dedicated universal decapping die is the whip! On the other hand, their presses suck, the powder measures are OK, and their "safety scale" is not worth taking out of the box.

In this time period, all we hear about is cost, and getting a good deal. Believe it or not, some things are worth paying more for. I have a Dillon 450, the granddad to your new set up, though basically the same. Grandpa bought it sometime in the mid 70's. I am still cranking out ammo on it. Still consistent as can be.

Eric F
September 7, 2008, 11:23 AM
their presses suck
Come on now.........their single stage and turret presses are great its just the progressive that have the fixable issues.

Dillion is great for some to most stuff but there are some rifle cartridges they just dont work for.(really long stuff) Just my .02

Navy joe
September 7, 2008, 11:29 AM
Welcome to the Blue side. I have dual 550s, one for each primer size. And just because I can. Good sly dog job on the wife, that is one heck of a piece of work there. :D

Eric, most people aren't running a progressive to load .50-90. If they are maybe they need to slow down and actually hit the buffalo or crank the gatling gun slower or sumptin. :evil:

Eric F
September 7, 2008, 11:31 AM
Eric, most people aren't running a progressive to load .50-90crank the gatling gun slower or sumptin

OK you got me on that one........

September 7, 2008, 02:38 PM
I wouldn't necessarily say their presses suck...They are just too finicky...Although the powder scale was down right horrible.

The lee was great for getting into reloading, I will use the trimmers and chamfer tools in my drill....but while reloading is a hobby and great time killer it was taking too long with the lee. And it was ultimately the powder measures that did me in...variations from dead on to .4 over/under were the norm on pistols using the disks and on rifle rounds +/- 5gr was too much variation to be confident in without checking every single round using the perfect measure...

September 7, 2008, 04:13 PM
I have three lee pro powder measures for three different calibers, every one is on the nuts using the disc's.
Floydster a.k.a. Smokeyloads

September 7, 2008, 04:27 PM
I also have 2 550s, and I also think it was money well spent. I also have a 650, and that thing is like lightning fast. Too fast. The 550 is the best press for the money. I have never been able to justify the 650., Never ran it for more than a couple of hours and then Then all of your components are gone.

Eric F
September 7, 2008, 05:36 PM
I do admit that my pro1k will not turn the round count my friends 650 will but I am not far off if I do a good pre load setup with extra primer trays. My fingers are just too big and fat and there is just not enough room to manuver around the frame for placing bullets on the brass. All being said for maybe 15-25 minutes more I have the same round count. Spec26 many seem to have the same issues with the powder on the lee. Yet many do not. I have never had a variation more then +/- .05gr yes as in 5 1/100ths but I am only useing aa#2 and my load is 4.9 gr. I dont use discs either just the charge bar.

Dillion makes good machines, I wonder if a better one could be made???? I would like to see one that could do BPCR with real black powder and a drop tube................

September 7, 2008, 06:10 PM
What is it they say "You get what you pay for"
I have heard that before. I have also heard this before.
We must happily assume the folks who firmly believe "you get what you pay for" would be delighted with Lee if they only cost twice as much as they do!
I don't know what press the OP was using but I load on a classic turret. I haven't had any quirks. The scale does suck big time, I don't use it. My pro auto disk throws powder all day long with no variation. My ammo is just as good as ammo made on other brand presses. I have used a Dillon 550 and thought it was a very nice press but not worth the extra money to upgrade from the CT, at least not right now.

Der Verge
September 7, 2008, 08:48 PM
Ok, FINE, I guess not all Lee presses suck. Must just be the one I have! :what:(challenger)

evan price
September 7, 2008, 10:16 PM
Hmm, I get load variances +0/-.1 grains with my Autodisc and a Pro-1000. My .45's shoot just as nice as my buddy with the Dillon 550. I crank out 250-300 per hour. And the press is about $139 or so.
I guess it's all in how much mechanical aptitude and willingness to tinker the user has.
For all everybody bitches about the Lee scale, I have no trouble with them! Can be finicky, but keep it clean and level and mine just works fine.

Uncle Chan
September 7, 2008, 10:47 PM
This thread makes me chuckle. I started on a 550b and dislike it so much, I went to a Lee Classic Turret. I still use the 550b for my 45LC, but that's it. I'm much happier and more impressed with my Lees.

You never can tell.

September 7, 2008, 11:27 PM
I have the Lee Loadmaster. I have none of the powder consistency issues described. From .40 S&W using the pro disk to 30.06 using the PPM I see only .1g max variation on the big cases. That's less than .2%. Agreed that the Lee scale is not up to par. It is functional, just not a lot of fun. The Lee dies are very good, after 15K plus rounds of 45acp and a thousand + of 30.06 the Loadmaster just keeps getting smoother and better. Caliber changes are fast and easy. I see many Dillion uses here that set up 2 or 3 of those expensive presses just so they don't have to change the caliber setup. I understand it's a real booger bear. That would be a real problem for me, to waste those kind of resources. I use the money I saved for components. Someday when I hit it big, I might go blue as well, they are good machines no doubt. For the money, I'm with Lee, and am happy with that.

September 7, 2008, 11:28 PM
Hey, I can understand it when someone gets a new Press, Car, Guitar, or anything else for that matter. The OP is expressing his excitement in his new found joy. Guys, lets not take this as a personal attack against anything on your bench. Be happy for the guy...

That said, people that know my cave know that I have three Dillons: 2 XL650's and a 550B, a Redding T7, and a LEE Classic cast along with alot of the other great tools and toys that you can buy for your bench. A great set up and lots of fun to load in, right?

2 weeks ago, I made a compact bench to process brass and prime, nothing too complicated while I watch TV, What can I say, Football season is upon us... so I thought maybe I should get a press, Maybe even one of those cheesy Lee "C" presses so I went to make the purchase Saturday while at the range after shooting (Hey SCRAT, where were you???) and while I was there and about to pay for it, at the last second, I saw two boxes of the LEE Challanger KIT for $36.00 each. Since it was an "O" frame, I bought it instead. I got home and mounted it to my bench today and while I watched Football, I had a blast using this thing. I ended up with 120 x 30-30 Win, FL sized & deprimed, trimmed, primed, and loaded with 165 gr LFP 'ala' Trail Boss. Then I used the ram primer tool that came with it to prime 300 pcs of 38 spcl. My Point???

I am happy with my cave in my garage (Real happy, in fact) but dammit, I am happy with my little compact bench next to my recliner in my living room too. I'll post some pics on another new thread and on the 7,000 post a pic of your bench thread.

Whatever floats or rocks your boat is what is best for you, You know what I mean???

Time for another cold one, so Cheers everybody.

September 8, 2008, 07:33 AM
I hope you guys aren't taking this as a bash on lee...Well except for the scale!!! Lee is what got me into reloading and was affordable, but "my" particular setup was too finicky to load any large batch of ammo. I am using all of my lee trimmers and dies in my dillon. Just had it with the press and its accessories...

IMO Lee presses could be right up there if they just got rid of all the plastic on their powder systems...

Personal opinions here, no way meant to put down all the lee users out there.

September 8, 2008, 02:52 PM
Spec, in case you not noticed yet, there are a lot of very passionate color hounds here. These discussions sometimes get VERY lively. No offense taken here, it just stimulates the conversation. And I think everyone here agrees, the Lee scale is functional but primitive, but at 18 bucks is cheap enough that ANYONE can get one. It is very accurate in spite of everything else. Welcome to the High Road and the liveliest place on the net. You will enjoy your new equipment, and we are all very happy for you.

September 8, 2008, 03:12 PM
Go BLUE!!!!!

September 8, 2008, 05:19 PM
I love my Dillon 550. It has served me well and loaded 10's of 1000's of rounds with zero breakage. I like my Lee single stage too and I used the Lee scale up until 2 months ago. I think that you will remain happy with your purchase for quite a while. If not, I will be happy to take it off your hands?:p

September 8, 2008, 08:56 PM
Spec, in case you not noticed yet, there are a lot of very passionate color hounds here. These discussions sometimes get VERY lively.

FN tell me about it, Mate.

But there are a few people out there with the Green thingy, a few of the Blue thingy's, a red thingy and even a ... ( Shall I continue???.... LOL )


Der Verge
September 8, 2008, 09:45 PM
LOL!!! A blue thingy, a green thingy, and a red thingy. HA!

I have one of each, and my doctor says I will be just fine!:D

September 8, 2008, 10:26 PM
As promised... a couple of shots of my mini bench.




It ain't much but if I want more, I walk less than 50 paces to The Cave.


September 9, 2008, 12:21 AM
lgb, what's the rubber hammer for? New bullet seater?

September 9, 2008, 01:17 AM
As a matter of fact...


As you can tell by the markings on the side of the rubber hammer, I have found that after a 12 pack of cold beers aiming for the one in the middle, when you see three depriming or decapping rods (or everything else for that matter!!), doesn't always work!! Just kidding...

It can also be used as a hunting weapon for this season's deer hunt. A couple knocks to the head, you know what I mean??!!! Seriously, two weeks ago, on the small turn off road at Angeles range where I shoot, two does were on the side of the road. So I stopped and got out of the car to get a closer look. They walked right up to me and one got so close I had to dog-gone slap her on the nose!!! No B.S.

How ya doing, Grizz. Hope all is well with you and Mrs Grizz.

Cheers Mate.

Eric F
September 9, 2008, 08:14 AM
after a 12 pack of cold beers aiming for the one in the middle, when you see three depriming
*sigh* what a light weight:neener::p

September 9, 2008, 10:39 AM
I wonder what could be wrong with a Lee disk powder measure that it would be inconsistent. Mine sure isn't, but if something can go wrong and make it wonky, I'd like to know so that I can watch for it!

Eric F
September 9, 2008, 10:51 AM
I wonder what could be wrong with a Lee disk powder measure that it would be inconsistent. Mine sure isn't, but if something can go wrong and make it wonky, I'd like to know so that I can watch for it!

Flake powders.......lee hand book says this atleast 3 diffrent times!

September 9, 2008, 01:42 PM
good and bad points on both, just like everything else you can find a lemon in about everything

September 9, 2008, 10:51 PM
after a 12 pack of cold beers aiming for the one in the middle, when you see three depriming

*sigh* what a light weight

it's true, but I still love beer!


Bush Pilot
September 10, 2008, 12:00 AM
It's hard to be humble when your press is Dillon blue.

September 11, 2008, 11:53 PM
Senior Member

Join Date: 04-17-08
Location: LGB
Posts: 472 As promised... a couple of shots of my mini bench.

It ain't much but if I want more, I walk less than 50 paces to The Cave.

Hey THR Crew,
Less than a week has passed and you know what, I have not even touched my other presses since I added the LEE press to my mini bench. Go Figure...

Perhaps it's because it's new, I don't know.

Till now, I have loaded 375 Win, 30-30 Win, 357 Mag, 300 WBY MAG (I missed my more stout presses for this caliber even though I only neck sized.), 223 Rem, and 44 Mag on it.

I really do love my Cave with all the progressive and heavy duty single stage presses and other tools / toys but it is kinda cool to scale way way back to the bare bones of it all and really take your time and do a little bit at a time. I am very pleased... and can you believe it, I am talking about an out of date LEE Challanger press without the breechlocks. Crazy...

September 12, 2008, 02:49 PM
I think Blue is nifty (I almost bought one with all the trimmings), but I do Love my Red (the Hornady one)... my LnL AP works great for me. I think it's hard to go wrong with any of the major manufacturers, they all have their strong points.

Like the previous poster, I did buy a single stage recently (a Hornady Classic), and find that I really do enjoy loading some of those rifle rounds the "slow" way too... Let's face it, if it's metal, has a cool lever and allows us to combine primers, powder, brass, lead and copper into "feed" for other metal contraptions that make a bang and put a hole in the target, we'll love it and give it a home, if we can afford it.

September 12, 2008, 02:54 PM
I do pistol ONLY on my RL550B. I wouldn't use anything else, at least nothing else non-Dillon. They have fabulous customer service as well. I just bought 9x19mm and .40S&W conversion kits from a fellow club member so that I can start loading lead bullet handloads for my Glocks now that I've got a couple of aftermarket cut rifling barrels for them.

I do all of my rifle loading on an RCBS Rock Chucker. I trickle and weigh every charge, so the Dillon wouldn't benefit me in any way loading rifle ammunition.

September 12, 2008, 06:47 PM
LGB nice looking bench. Good job.

September 12, 2008, 07:19 PM
I think the only problem that I have had, is using Accurate #5 and H110 powders in the Lee Pefect measure. They will tend to leak a bit out the side of the drum. I think it's because the grains are so small in those powders. It still dumped every load just the same in the scale though. (200 .357's with H110 this afternoon).

Really though. The only powder that would not be consistant with the measure (which made me want to double check, weighing each charge) is Herco with large charges for 12 ga. slugs. At 18 grains there wasn't a problem, but with 36 grains, it would be off by as much as 1/2 grain. This has happened to me only with Herco.

All of the dies, trimmers? No problems.

September 12, 2008, 08:45 PM
LGB nice looking bench. Good job.

Thanks, Rusty. I think it turned out kinda cool, too. I am resisting the urge to drop $ for a Lee Classic Turret on this mini bench because I have been needing an excuse to buy it but when I told Mrs LGB about this plan, she said, why don't you just buy another 550b and mount it. I said, "why, I have one already and besides, it's only my mini-bench" and she said, "My point exactly, why do you need a LCT for?"

Now how are you gonna argue with that?!!

Welll, I have to get to the Cave and load up some stuff. I have to load up 500 each of 9mm and 45acp on my 650's. See you guys in about an hour or so.


September 12, 2008, 09:05 PM
Welcome to the Dark side hows the Blue Kool-aid taste?

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