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Best Non-progressive Press

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Surely, Jan 28, 2004.

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  1. Surely

    Surely Member

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    How does the Dillon 500 compare to the Rock Chucker press? Is there another brand that is better than both? Im new to this and would like to start out with gear that will last and I will enjoy using. Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2004
  2. Cortland

    Cortland Member

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    The 550B and the Rockchucker represent two different worlds of reloading.

    It would be helpful to know what you're planning on reloading. Pistol calibers or rifle calibers? What kind of volumes?

    Forgot to add, the 550 IS a progressive press.
     
  3. Surely

    Surely Member

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    500

    There are two different styles of the 500, the 550b is the progressive one. The other one is the same but doesnt have the parts to use progressivly I guess. For now I will be reloading mostly 243 winchester and some 338 winchester magnum. Dont know it I will ever bother reloading for my 9mm pistol, ammo is cheap and I dont use it nearly as much as the rifles.

    Here is a link to a little info about the non progressive version of the 500, Link

    Thanks
     
  4. tc300mag1

    tc300mag1 Member

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    use a lyman turrent press but im thinking of getting something progressive for 45acp
     
  5. Ala Dan

    Ala Dan Member in memoriam

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    You are comparing an automated press, to a single
    stage press; which IMHO is quite unfair. :( Sure,
    the Dillon is a very fine machine; capeable of mass
    production handloads in a short period of time.

    But in our business "QUALITY" should go
    in before the name goes on! With that said,
    there is NOTHING that beat's a single stage press
    in this respect? You ask, "why"? Its simple, you
    handle each case on an individual basis several
    times; before turning out the finished product,
    which allows for more consistent case
    inspection. A deformed case can be discarded
    from virtually any step in the process!

    Now, with all that out of the way there is of
    course the "Rockchucker" and "Rockchucker
    Supreme" from R.C.B.S., as well as those from
    other major manufactuer's. The old CH Tool
    and Die Company use to produce their CH
    press, which was a very tough machine that
    was capeable of handling all handloading steps;
    including case forming. Hornady (the old Pacific
    Tool & Die Company) makes excellent products;
    as does Redding, Lyman, Lee and others.

    After using the regular R.C.B.S. "Rockchucker",
    I can highly recommend it. An the added fact
    that R.C.B.S. customer service gets an A+x5
    rating, makes it #1.

    Best Wishes,
    Ala Dan, N.R.A. Life Member
     
  6. Cortland

    Cortland Member

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    Ah ... right, the AT 500 :eek: Never really seen the point of that machine, but I digress.

    My advice is:

    Lee Classic Cast press, Lee dies, Lee auto-prime w/ shellholder set, Lee case length gauge + cutter head + lockstud + chamfer bit, RCBS Uniflow, PACT digital scale, Lyman auto-flow tumbler, plus whatever calipers and bullet puller you want.

    The Rockchucker is a fine press, but if you look at recent threads on the Lee Classic Cast I think you'll find most people consider it be the Rockchucker's equal at a significantly smaller price.
     
  7. Peakbagr

    Peakbagr Member

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    Forster Co-Axial

    In my opinion its the Forster Co-Axial press.
    Unbelieveably strong and precise, just slide the die in and out of a slot, and the ability to prime on the press.
    Powerful enough to use for caseforming rifle brass with a sweet touch for seating bullets and primers.
    Expensive and worth it.
     
  8. Cactus

    Cactus Member

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    I agree with Peakbagr. If you want or need the BEST single stage press, it would probably be the Forster.

    However, an RCBS Rockchucker, Hornady Lock-n-Load or other top of the line single stage will last for many thousands of rounds of ammo.

    The Dillon 500 is neither fish nor foul. It is probably not as strong as a premium single stage press but not as fast as a good progressive.
     
  9. ClarkEMyers

    ClarkEMyers Member

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    Of the two I've owned -

    Forster does have the overhead clearance issues which show up with the tall micrometer adjustment dies and such. Worth the money but a little different rhythm to it. Nice features like the clean primer catching and almost universal shell holding and if you like the primer seating. Mostly I decap punch and base and prime with a hand tool so it solves problems I don't have.

    The classic Rockchucker had problems with primers bouncing around on decapping - glue a soft bottom in the base of the original cast metal primer catcher (with the rubber band) to keep spent primers from bouncing out and accumulate lead styphenate. The angle may suit or may not. Did a nice job of reasonable case forming for me.

    Sort of like which is best Dillon depends just a tad on how big your hands are and how much caliber changing you do so there is no single best single stage press - though I've heard good things about the big Hollywood's I've never used them.
     
  10. Ala Dan

    Ala Dan Member in memoriam

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    Um, lets see? My 2000 model RCBS Rockchucker came
    with a plastic primer catcher; but sometimes I
    still have a problem with primers bouncing out onto
    the floor of my work area. :( :uhoh: :D

    Best Wishes,
    Ala Dan, N.R.A. Life Member
     
  11. Smokey Joe

    Smokey Joe Member

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    Single stage forever!!

    Amen to AlaDan!!! And the several other single-stage users who have posted here! The Dillon advocates all seem to assume that you should be doing what they do, because they like doing what they do. It's nice to hear other THR members who single-stage and like it that way!!!
     
  12. R-WEST

    R-WEST Member

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    Another single-stager here!! I like to look at/fondle each case as much as possible (yes, it's sick, I know :)) and I'm not loading for an AR/AK, so max output isn't a priority.

    I have no idea how many thousands of rounds have been loaded on my 70's vintage RockChucker, and it looks like it'll go however many more thousand I'm up for. The only knock on it is, when loading long cases (the longest I have are 300 W'by and 416 RMag), the throat opening is a touch short to get the bullet in on top of the case. I've worked the handle a fraction early a few times and taken some half-moons out of my fingers. :uhoh:

    The next one, if there IS a next one, will be either the RC Supreme or Redding Ultramag.

    BTW, Cabela's has the RCBS "Supreme Master" kit (you need to add dies and a case trimmer), on for $220 http://cabelas.com/cabelas/en/templ...g/item-link.jhtml.1_A&_DAV=search&hasJS=true. If starting from scratch, I'd go with that and never look back. Add some good dial calipers, a trimmer, another scale (to use as a double check on the other one),and the little odds/ends you'll invariably find a "need" for, and you're in business.

    BTW II - If you only shoot 20 or 30 rounds a year, it'll take a LONG time to recoup the investment. You can tie up thousands if you're one of those types :rolleyes: who has to try out every new powder or bullet that comes along.

    R-WEST
     
  13. Mal H

    Mal H Administrator

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    RockChucker and primer bounce

    A couple of you have mentioned that spent primers tend to bounce out of the catcher when you deprime. I had the same problem. I taped a piece of cardboard to the catcher - problem solved. (See attachment)

    Looking at the cardboard, I see that I must have used the cover of an old National Bullet catalog, but any piece of cardboard will do as long as it is related to reloading. :D
     

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  14. JoeHatley

    JoeHatley Member

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    Mal,

    Now that's a good idea!! I've been picking up spent primers off the floor for way too long. One of those... "Now why didn't I think of that?!?" moments.

    Joe
     
  15. g56

    g56 Member

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    The Dillon AT500 is as good as any heavy duty single stage press, like the Rock Chucker (I have both), and can be used as such, however it can be used like a turret press, only better because you can interchange shell plates for easy caliber change. The best part is that if you find yourself wanting higher productivity, you can upgrade it to a 550, and you can do it in stages, so adding an option like the automatic powder measure will substantially improve your ability to make more ammo, in less time.
     
  16. Smokey Joe

    Smokey Joe Member

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    Bouncy durn primers

    MalHÑNice pic! Been doin' the same for yearsÑmake my "fence" out of masking tape, so the primers that bounce, stick. They can get into no further mischief. When reloading session is over, just remove fence, wad up & toss along with all the primers in the catcher. IMX, rifle primers are much more likely to bounce than pistol primers.

    Hey, R WestÑFondling pretty ammo is NOT sick! Handling that pretty brass is part of the fun, IMHO. And each time you handle it, you get a better idea of the condition of each case, as to neck splits, etc.
     
  17. WESHOOT2

    WESHOOT2 Member

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    I LOVE MY CO-AX, BUT

    It sometimes pulls 9x19/9x21/38 Super rims off during resizing.

    My Lyman Crusher II offers THREE mounting holes.

    My LEE's are broken.
     
  18. Matt Dillon

    Matt Dillon Member

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    You may do well to consider the new Lee Classic press. I mounted one yesterday and am very impressed. Also regarding spent primers, they have a great idea in providing a plastic tube at the bottom of the press to funnel the spent primers into a garbage can. This is one solid and well built press, and Midway has them for $50.00 if you have an FFL or are a dealer. This can't be beat!:D
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2004
  19. SC_shooter

    SC_shooter Member

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    I don't understand why RCBS didn't make the RockChucker deprime like the Lee Classic does.

    I love my RockChucker except for the stinkin' primer cup.

    Paul
     
  20. Paul "Fitz" Jones

    Paul "Fitz" Jones Moderator - Emeritus

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    Check out CH4D 4 position H press

    I sold hundeds of them for the previous company and you pick up a a empty case and move it through 4 positions and in seconds it is completely loaded. No loading blocks needed and I mentored the hundreds I sold in the 70's and have caliber conversions and parts left cheap. There is nothing to rotate and wear out as it is a multi-lifetime press

    Fitz
     
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