Metering flake with the Uniflow


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JohnM
December 31, 2011, 03:52 PM
Anyone have any experience metering accurate small charges of a powder like Unique with an RCBS Uniflow set up with the small metering tube?
I guess you need to change both the drum and the metering tube if it has the standard set?

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P-32
December 31, 2011, 04:08 PM
With flake powder you will have to be very uniform in the operation of the Uniflow. I've loaded a bunch of rounds with flake powder using the small drum and small metering tube.

JohnM
December 31, 2011, 04:16 PM
You got good control though?
Just damn near impossible with the standard drum and tube.
Thought I'd try and find the parts I need next week and try it out.
Seems like the smaller tube should make a better cut.
Do you keep a baffle in the hopper?

mtrmn
December 31, 2011, 04:18 PM
Yes use the small drum in your uniflow for pistol loads. Have had zero trouble with flake powders and ball powders. Once I get it set where I want it there is very little variation in charges with these.

The stick powders like IMR 4350 have given trouble though due to the shape of the kernels. I usually weigh those loads because I only use the long stick powders in certain loads and rarely load them in large numbers.

Metering tube? = drop tube?

JohnM
December 31, 2011, 04:24 PM
Metering screw assembly I think it's called.
You know the part I mean :)

mtrmn
December 31, 2011, 04:31 PM
OK-got it. When I bought my Uniflow like 30 yrs ago it came with both large and small drums/metering screws. I take it since you have to hunt parts you only got the large size with yours. It will make a big difference in your success with small pistol charges.

cfullgraf
December 31, 2011, 04:35 PM
Do you keep a baffle in the hopper?

I use a baffle. I align the holes in the baffle with the rotational axis of the drum. That way, the holes in the baffle are not directly over the metering cavity in the drum.

Others do not find this alignment makes a difference.

As said, operate it the same way every time. I try to be smooth with no more jostling or banging as possible. Others like to rap or tap the measure on each stroke. Either way works but you must be consistent.

dbarnhart
December 31, 2011, 04:37 PM
Define 'small'. I've used the standard Uniflow with 5.5gr Unique for may years with no problems.

cfullgraf
December 31, 2011, 04:42 PM
Small cavity in the Uniflow is 1/2" in diameter.

Large is 11/16" in diameter.

JohnM
December 31, 2011, 04:49 PM
Yeah, the one I have is the 11/16th drum.
It just won't keep small pistol charges of unique close enough.
And I like that powder, but I don't want to weigh all the charges.

dbarnhart
December 31, 2011, 07:51 PM
Actually when I was asking for a definition of small I meant the size of the charge. Mine has the 11/16 cavity. My charge of 5.5gr Unique never vary more than +/- .1gr

Blue68f100
December 31, 2011, 07:54 PM
Yes, Must me the small. Small is good up to 15gr if I recall. The micrometer head gives you a finer control over the std one. Plus allows you to dial in different powders quickly.

With flake powder you have to do a tapping sequence with the handle to settle the powder so it's not bridging. If your on a AP, most prefer ball powders for consistency. Some even add a device to shake the dispense for flake powder.

JohnM
December 31, 2011, 09:01 PM
Last week I was trying to get some loads of 6.0 grns Unique.
I was getting too many hitting 6.2 grns which I didn't like.
Max was 6.5 and I didn't want to get that close.

Muddydogs
December 31, 2011, 09:39 PM
I use my Uniflow with the large inserts to dump less then 6 grains of Unique all the time. Its all in the flip of the handle. Of course when you figure out that a couple .grains is not going to make that much difference you will not worry about it so much. Hell a good scale is + - .1 grain at best. If you want to be exact you had better measure every load. I understand throwing below max charge to stay in the clear but if you are going to be using anything but a scale to despense powder it is a good idea when working up a load to go a couple .grains over the charge you are thinking about to make sure you are safe if your thrower varies a little. You know the number in the book is just that a number, depending on your firearm you might be ok at a higher charge then listed or you could have problems at a grain or two lighter then max thats why you need to work up your load and make an informed decision. Just because you load at 6.6 grains doesn't mean that your gun is just automatically going to blow up.

Minnesota Wild
January 1, 2012, 06:58 AM
I use the small drum/screw setup in one of my Uniflows for loading Unique in 38/357 and 40 S&W. It works better than the big setup, but I still get more .1-.2 grain variations than I would like. With Bullseye that small setup is awesome...I can hit 2.5 to 5 grains 99 out of 100 times.

JohnM
January 1, 2012, 07:50 AM
Just because you load at 6.6 grains doesn't mean that your gun is just automatically going to blow up.

Who'da thunk. When I'm using fast powder I want it metered closer than a "coupla" tenths.
I'll get the other parts for the Uniflow.

mtrmn
January 1, 2012, 11:02 AM
like others have said, you need to operate the uniflow consistently. I always hit the end of travel up and down a little hard to jar the measure around a little bit. Just once in each direction.

JohnM
January 1, 2012, 11:15 AM
like others have said, you need to operate the uniflow consistently.
I've been measuring, weighing, metering powders for close to 50 years, this Uniflow seems to be particularly bad.
Another drum and metering screw isn't going to be that much.
If that won't do it I'll probably just quit running flake through it.

Striker Fired
January 1, 2012, 11:34 AM
Mine didn't come with the small setup,so I made a sleeve for mine with sharp edges and turned the screw end down.I made my sleeve just a little smaller than the boughten small so my max charge is less than most ,but it holds weights really good and doesn't "cut" grains as rough anymore.If I have to through larger charges ,I use a Hornady measure now.

Steve C
January 1, 2012, 12:45 PM
I currently own Hornady powder measures that are similar to the RCBS Uniflow. The standard "Universal" meter meter will not measure pistol powders under 10gr consistently with the exception of Trail Boss that is so bulky that the volumes are much higher for small charges than any other powder.

With the small meter installed my charges with Unique are spot on once the powder settles after a half dozen or so throws though I may have to adjust it to the exact charge I want after the settling process.

dagger dog
January 1, 2012, 07:16 PM
See if you can pick up a new or used Lee Perfect Powder dispenser, they work very well with small charges of flake pistol powder.

I bought a Lee kit for the extra press,couldn't stand the scale and sold it,tried the powder measure and didn't give it enough time and went back to my Uniflow,and RCBS 505.

Got into a Lee Classic Turret and wanted to use a dispenser instead of dippers for charging handgun cartridges. So I decided to try the PPM again,mounted it onto the turret on a homemade extension.

Once it is broken in and the tension on the drum is adjusted properly, it drops small charges of Bullseye and Uniquefor 38 Special and Trailboss very accuratetly,plus it meters stick powder without the herky jerky of the drum cutting powder grains.

If you have one that you threw into the junk box pull it out and give it another try, you may be surprised!

oneounceload
January 1, 2012, 07:31 PM
Having loaded 32ACP and 32SWL with the Uniflow, I can get consistent readings even when loading charges in the 2.5 grain range

Yarddog
January 1, 2012, 07:35 PM
Ditto On the Lee Perfect powder Dispencer, Love it & for the$$ you can't beat it JMO ; )
Y/D

JohnM
January 2, 2012, 08:16 AM
Don't know anyone with a Lee measure and I've never seen one.
I'll see what I can get with a change of parts in my RCBS.
Like to get a Redding, but the pennies are too tight.

cfullgraf
January 2, 2012, 09:41 AM
After using a Uniflow, an RCBS Little Dandy and a Midway Indispensable, all metal drum style powder measures, the plastic Lee Perfect Powder measure was disappointing.

Walkalong
January 2, 2012, 10:07 AM
My drum type measures work very, very, well. No complaints.

Steve in PA
January 2, 2012, 07:25 PM
I use Unique (6.5gr and 230gr FMJ) for reloading my .45acp. I have the RCBS uniflow and use a baffle all the time. The key is to set up a nice, smooth rhythm.

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