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Lee auto disk powder measure

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Metalman1, Jul 2, 2013.

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  1. Metalman1

    Metalman1 Member

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    I just can't get this auto disk to give me the powder load I want. I'm using long shot powder for a 9mm RN. I did the math and for 5 grs. I should use .41 or the closest to that on the auto disk which is .40. The powder measurement was not even close. Then I tried my charge bar, first time was close, second time right on the $ and then the third try no powder came out. The forth try I got half the powder I wanted. After about 45 minutes of this :banghead: I gave up and tomorrow is another day. Any help.
     
  2. frankenstein406

    frankenstein406 Member

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    What powder? I didn't have any luck with the charge bar but was using big flakey powder. Also the disks seem to change after they got seasoned with more powder drops. Make sure its turned on or fully open.
     
  3. Fire_Moose

    Fire_Moose Member

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    Did you try one size up from .41?

    Sent from my CZ85 Combat
     
  4. 32_d3gr33s

    32_d3gr33s Member

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    The numbers on the conversion chart are nowhere near accurate, so trial and error to get the right hole. other than that ive had no issues whatsoever with mine. i do make sure to cycle it 4 or 5 times before using it though.
     
  5. Rule3

    Rule3 Member

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    This^^^^

    Some powders are close, some over some under. As mentioned the chart is a starting point, you need to go up or down and find the closest without going over the max or you loose the Showcase.:D
     
  6. Reefinmike

    Reefinmike Member

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    Me too, when I first throw in a hopper of powder, I'll cycle it 3 or so times to fill up a case, dump the powder in the hopper and then rip the lever through on the auto index turret as if I were loading rounds to mimic the charge id get during live loading, weigh the charge and do it again. Ive put Hp38, win231, win 738, varget, h335, bullseye, universal and a couple others through my turret, all throw charges within .1gr, usually right on the money.

    I was loading with unique for the first time the other day and found near the end of my ladder loading, the disks threw one grain under what the lee material states. I forget the exact charge, but for example, the disk that was supposed to throw 7.5gr actually threw a consistent 6.5gr.
     
  7. jfh

    jfh Member

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    I use the Lee powder measures in different configurations, but I don't use Long Shot, so I can't offer any specific comments on that powder. Like the others, though, I have found the disks to simply need to be selected by trial-and-error once you use the Lee specifications to get within the ballpark.

    But there is more to using the Lee Measures--or any measure, I think--than just selecting the proper disk size for the powder amount desired. You need to be sure the measure operates consistently, and that it, along with the die, is clean and operating freely, that the disk / bar is not hanging up.

    Once you have that disk size / charge bar set up for a satisfactory charge, confirm that charge is consistently delivered by running at least ten test drops once the hopper has been operated enough to settle the powder. And, don't let the hopper drop below 50% full until you know how the measure feeds the powder.

    Regardless of using disks or the charge bar (which I now exclusively use, or an aftermarket one I got years ago), I also have a rhythm to my charging, and that includes a standard 'rap-tap' on the hopper as well as the same kind and velocity to my push-pull on the press handle.

    Finally, if you are running without the positive-return rod / chain assembly and relying on the spring return (as on a turret), be sure the PTD is set up correctly to operate the measure slide fully.

    Jim H.
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2013
  8. dragon813gt

    dragon813gt Member

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    What do you mean by not even close? Was one cavity under and the next cavity over? This is fairly common. The discs unfortunately don't throw every size charge. You can always buy extra discs. Fill one with epoxy and drill out to appropriate size for the charge you want. If the charge bar didn't throw a charge at all it sounds like the case isn't coming up into the charging die enough to fully cycle the PAD.


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  9. evan price

    evan price Member

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    imho the adjustable charge bar doesn't work well. The chart with the VMs is a worst-case scenario with dense powder and the loosest tolerance disk. Nearly every disk throws lower than Lee says they can throw. Start experimenting with the next sizes up to get the closest to 5 grains you want. I also take a larger hole and drive a small screw in the side of the disk to close off part of the cavity and make it smaller. I also file out disk holes to make them larger. You can get extra disks easy from Lee or eBay.
     
  10. stubbicatt

    stubbicatt Member

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    I guess I am lucky, as my autodisc has worked for me for nearly 30 years. I don't remember any of these issues. It served on a Loadmaster for a time.

    I will say that the LCT is a great choice for this measure. After it charges a case, it is indexed 4 times before it charges another and each time the reservoir is shaken a bit to assure uniform filling of the cavity.

    Keep at it and hopefully this will resolve itself.
     
  11. RealGun

    RealGun Member

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    The Auto Disk Powder Measure relies on a good fit between the bottom of the hopper and the surface of either the disk or especially the adjustable charge bar. I did two things. First, I noticed by trial and error that the charge bar worked better on one surface than the other. Try flipping it over. Secondly I rubbed the bottom of the hopper on very fine sandpaper.

    Other little touches are use of Krazy Glue to tighten up loose screw holes in the hopper plastic. It still is true that the screws should not be overtightened.

    When all else fails, after achieving a good fit and some success, I squirt the MIM surface of the lower assembly with Hornady One Shot. Works every time.

    I prefer this measure but have had to learn its quirks. The price is right.

    Note that I routinely find that the aperture number indicated by the chart is exactly one size too low. If off the target load a bit, and I want to get closer than .3-.5 grain, I go to the adjustable charge bar. I could be wrong, but I think large volume loads can tolerate approximation, so once over the capacity of the adjustable charge bar, I would go with the closest yield from the disk set.
     
  12. dickttx

    dickttx Member

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    In order for the PAD to be consistent you need to be sure that the hole in the disk is lined up exactly below the hole in the bottom of the powder hopper. And that the disk hole is directly over the drop tube when the ram is all the way to the top. You adjust this by screwing the die body in or out of the turret. With this lined up I found that I got very consistent drops, without a riser or without rapping/tapping.
    When I got a new LnL AP I moved all my Lee dies and the PAD to it. It is just as consistent on the LnL and it doesn't move, bounce or jiggle at all.
    The actual drop will always be less than the chart. With 85 different powders and 24 drop holes it would be absolutely amazing if all/any of the 2040 combinations were spot on. So far as I know, no other measure gives you any instructions that will get you nearly as close. I have/had a Lyman 55, an Ohaus DuoMeasure and an RCBS. All good but not nearly as consistent as my PAD's. I have not even unboxed the Hornady measure that came with my LnL.
    If you can't get a drop you want with the disks, then the ACB is available. On my LCT it was absolutely consistent. On my LnL I quit using it because I could not align the holes, as above, due to the thickness of the LnL.
     
  13. higgite

    higgite Member

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    Please don't take offense, but are you sure the disk is installed right? There are a couple of slots in the bottom of the disk that will fit over the operating lever. Only one of them will work right and align the disk in the right spots to receive and dump a charge. Don't ask me how I know this. ;)

    At full stroke, you should be able to look straight down and see through the disk, the base and the powder die. The holes in the disk and the base should not overlap to form any ledges that can keep some powder from dropping.
     
  14. RealGun

    RealGun Member

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    Are you referring to the cylindrical "Pro" hopper or the box type? I don't see where the box type especially requires any alignment of holes, other than being sure to mount the disk or ACB in the correct fixed slot on the face of the lower assembly.
     
  15. stavman11

    stavman11 Member

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    I have 3 Pro Disk setups

    had 1 set for 9mm and Tightgroup with .40 disk and the Other setup with Tightgroup for .357 with the .40 disk... i continue to get a few .2gr difference in drops between the 2... Each one is consistent but are different from each other...

    so like others said... be sure its setup correctly.... be sure it is TURNED on and not Off or 1/2 way.... and if the drop isnt what ya want try next # up or down accordingly.... should be able ta get about .2 to .3 difference per number

    good luck... hang in there shouldn't take to much ta get it correct....

    another Thought.. make sure it is fully re-setting after each Charge... i use a Little bungy Cord... work better than the chain for me
    [​IMG]
     
  16. 1SOW

    1SOW Member

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    Start completely over again.
    Thoroughly clean the powder through die, drop tube and any extensions. Clean, lube and realign the turret using the 1/4" wrench and make it perfect with your normal handle pull.
    Triple check the disc and return spring are installed properly.

    Larger flake powders will not drop as consistently as ball, flattened ball and small rod powders. The latter 3 will drop within .1 grain every time.

    I personally don't get consistent drops from the adjustable charge bar with light loads. I occassionally use it for load developmnt weighing every drop.


    .
     
  17. RPegram

    RPegram Member

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    I use the disc, but don't even look at the paper that came with it describing drops, I use trial and error. Once I think I've got the one close to the drop I want, I will drop 10 or more and then weigh again, throwing each drop right back in the hopper. I have found it will take almost a dozen drops and then it will settle down to +-.1 gr. I still measure a lot, many times every round. I'm sorry, I like all my fingers. Also, clean it often and use lots of dryer sheets to keep static in control on all parts.
     
  18. RealGun

    RealGun Member

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    Well again, if you simply use the next size larger aperture number than the chart indicates, you may find that it is much closer and less time consuming than your "trial and error", shot in the dark.
     
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2013
  19. stavman11

    stavman11 Member

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    Most of my Powders, heck all of em, are small ball Powders... So they stay and Load Consistently...

    But, like I posted, each dropper may be different than others... So I do test each disk # 10x to determine if its what i want or not... works well for me....
    Im not trying to get closer than .1 or .05 variances.... So i am good.....
     
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