theres a gun show coming to town in 2 days and im in the market for a new scale. im torn between a balance beam and digital scale, no set brand yet. if i get a digital scale id like it to accualy work, the las two i had kept jumping by 1g up and down and i have to zero them out every load and it made me to leary to use and i went back to the balance beam. question is, are there any decent scales out there in the 250.00 and under range. features are not a big deal, what matters to me is easy of use and accuracy. any sugestions?
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August 13, 2010, 01:53 AM
I tried a few digital scales and had nothing but trouble out of them. I gave up on them completely. I say your best bet is to get a good balance beam scale and be done with it. I bought the RCBS 10-10 and never regretted it. I can set up just as fast as a digital and I know it is accurate.
August 13, 2010, 02:18 AM
if you dont mind me asking, what did you give for yours, i saw one at gander mnt yesterday and thats why im torn
August 13, 2010, 03:46 AM
If your digital balance wasn't working, did you contact the company?
I still have the Ainsworth I bought in the early '80s (I believe) and it still works. Had an RCBS that dies during a move. Replaced it with a Lyman.
For a balance beam (only reloaders and druggies still use beams), be sure that you store the beam off the fulcrum and the unit is kept covered and dust-free when not in use.
August 13, 2010, 04:20 AM
I paid $92 for mine, but I bought in back in 1998. I saw one at midwayusa a few months ago and it was $140 something. They are well worth the money.
August 13, 2010, 05:03 AM
I use an RCBS 5-0-5 and verify aganinst a digital every 10 or so rounds. Why is it important to storge it off the fulcrum? I just rezero it when I start a new load.
August 13, 2010, 08:28 AM
I've used the Ohaus balance beam for years and still prefer it to my digital.
August 13, 2010, 09:07 AM
I have not found a digital to be as accurate as my 40 year old Lyman. Have several expensive digitals.
August 13, 2010, 10:56 PM
well all and all we will see what the gunshow holds tomorow, i hope a lot! balance beam it is!
August 13, 2010, 11:10 PM
If you look into digital I would suggest this scale - its what I have and it works great. It can use battery or 120V. But one of the best things is it gives you an extra decimal point, which many of the regular reloading scales dont do - this is very handy for me when Im working up accurate rifle rounds. Plus your not paying for a marked up (reloading) name brand.
I picked up a used on on ebay for $60.00 and have been very pleased - I sold the dillon after using this one for a while.
Question. If digital scales are so inaccurate why do jewlers weigh gold and diamonds on them? Just a thought.
August 14, 2010, 12:00 AM
I have a 35 year old RCBS beam scale----
I also have a digital scale which I don't trust so I use the beam scale
to check the digital scale.
My digital has fits when it don't work properly & has to be reset to make
it do the proper thing-- many times during the day or night.....:eek:
August 14, 2010, 12:06 AM
Started with a 5-0-5 beam scale (RCBS label, but made by Ohaus.) It worked just fine. Decided to go high tech and got a Dillon electronic 10-12 years or so ago. It was cool, but after a few years on MY bench with MY technique it stopped being consistent - needed to be re-zeroed every few minutes.
Went back to the beam and have been perfectly happy. That scale is the only Dillon product I have regretted buying.
For powder I now know that a beam is all I need (they say that experience is the best teacher, especially if it's somebody else's experience - too bad I didn't follow that advice.) Now IF I were doing a lot of bullet casting, or match bullet sorting, I might find a way to make an electronic work. Being able to zero on a weight and then read plus and minus variations directly is MUCH easier on a digital scale. But that's not what I do with powder weighing, for which I have found the beam to be superior.
August 14, 2010, 02:49 AM
Why is it important to storge it off the fulcrum?
If you have the scale mounted on a vibration isolated platform, storage of the beam is probably not important. However, if it is just off on one end of your bench, there can be quite a bit of vibration from various reloading / gunsmithing activities and that can wear the knife edges over time. Extreme shock could possibly crack the agate.
Allowing the scale to collect dirt dulls the knife edges during use, even if it is stored disassembled. So the idea is to store it disassembled, and keep it clean.
One reason I like the RCBS 10-10 is because it knocks down and stores in its own hard case in just a few seconds. The storage pockets built into the body protect the knife edges by supporting the beam so that there is a "gap" under them. Other pockets hold the pans.
Other models can be stored by covering them with a vinyl dust cover, but they are still assembled under that cover.
August 14, 2010, 08:38 AM
Question. If digital scales are so inaccurate why do jewlers weigh gold and diamonds on them? Just a thought. I suspect a jewelers scale costs a bit more then what the average loader is going to spring for. And I wouldn't say that all digital scales are inaccurate either. Plenty of loaders use them with no problems at all. I just find my balance beam more convenient.
August 14, 2010, 10:55 AM
"Question. If digital scales are so inaccurate why do jewlers weigh gold and diamonds on them? Just a thought."
I agree with qaqjaq, it's not "digital" that's the issue, it's the quality.
You can bet no jewler is going to be using a reloading grade digital scale. AND, they will likely have their very costly scales tested and recalibrated by a well trained and well equipped certification technician on a regular basis, just as grocery and drug stores and precision labratories do.
August 14, 2010, 11:23 AM
We use small digital scales at work to weigh out put from our machines. They typically run about $1000.00 each