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Hi Guys and Gals, Going to take the dive into reloading very soon. Been reading books(ABCs of reloading etc.) and studying here for quite a while. Going to eventually load for:30-30, .35Rem. ,45-70, .223 and 3006. I was wondering if you fellas with alot of experience think it would be okay to start off with Lee dippers as my primary powder measuringng device. I have settled on Lee products. Not going to purchase one of their kits because I prefer their classic cast single press over the aluminum ones that come with kits. This is going to make it a little more costly to get started. That is why I figured I could get started with the dippers and buy a good scale later on. I really appreciate the help and advice. Thanks. Joe. P.S. Puke: glad Lee straightened out your primer tool situation. I have not heard very many bad things about Lee's customer service.
 

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Howdy and welcome to reloading! It is just fine to start with the dippers, I did. Just make sure you verify charge weights from the dipper with a scale before you start loading. Also, if you pick up a copy of Lee's reloading manual it shows powder charges in grains and in dipper # for each caliber.

You'll eventual want to go with a powder measure which are inexpensive down the road. Good luck and don't hesitate to ask questions. Lots of very experienced loaders here.
 

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I worked with the dippers for a while, after I moved out on my own and didn't have access to Dad's nice reloading setup. They work, but they're very limiting. Nothing wrong with starting with them, you can produce useful ammo with the dippers.

Don't plan on it being a long-term solution though. ;D

Worthwhile to save up enough to get yourself a good scale and a good powder measure or two.

Regards, Guy
 

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Nothing wrong with the Lee aluminum base press I bought one used 35 - 40 years ago and still using it. But I do now have a lee 4 hole classic cast turret press kit that is made for Cabela's. The scale that came with the Cabela's kit is still NIB I don't need it. I started with the dippers too and a lee classic loader. I just check Lee's website and they are moving and having a sale. Check it out.

TO NY
https://factorysales.com/html/xcart/catalog/index.html
 

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El Kabong
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If you read some of my posts, I am not a Lee user. I dont like much of what they make.
The classic loader & the dippers are the two things I will endorse.
If you buy the classic loaders, you will get the dipper chart per caliber.
If you do not. Always use the dipper rated below the charge you want.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the replies. Looked at a few scales. Rcbs scales look to be pretty good and I have heard and read good things about them. Think I'm gonna wind up with more than one" color" of equipment!!
 

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El Kabong
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No shame in that. We all have a rainbow on our benches.
The 10-10 RCBS scale is the best one made.
 

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I have RCBS, Lyman, Lee, Hornady and they all work together just fine.

TO NY
 

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Almost thirty years after I started loading with a Lee Loader, I still have a full set of scoops, and I still use them for certain loads. If you look at the load data that comes with Lee dies, you'll see that they have plenty of suggested loads that use the scoop provided with the dies.

You WILL need a scale, if for nothing else than to verify the weight of scooped charges. Powders change, and what the chart says may or may not be what you actually get with the scoops.

I'll second your choice of a Lee Classic press. Just remember, don't buy something just because it's a good deal..........you'll be using it for a long time, or spending more money to replace it or upgrade to something better. 8)
 

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I have used lee dipper powder measures in the beginning but never scaled my scoops. pj I must ask you this question. If you weighed your scoops using Lee dippers how far apart was the high and lows of the grains?

I remember reading and trying the proper to get uniform scoops.

TO NY
 

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308/338 said:
If you weighed your scoops using Lee dippers how far apart was the high and lows of the grains?
TO NY, I weighed each scoop for awhile when it was all new to me, but once I felt comfortable with the scoops and was getting good consistent throws, I didn't bother. Most of my charges were 7-8 grains of Unique back then, so the most they varied was around .2 grains, or +/- .1 grain.

I made up several charts over the years, showing the powder and the scoop, then listing the amount it actually threw. Every time I bought a new lot of powder I'd weigh it again, and there usually WAS a difference, albeit a small one. But instead of weighing each one, I'd throw ten charges, and write down the average.........as in total weight divided by ten. I still do it that way.

When I was first settling on The Papajohn 30-30 Load, I found that the 2.2cc scoop would give me anywhere from 29.7 grains of IMR-4895 to 30.6, but it still shot lights-out regardless. The average worked out to 30.2 grains, so that's what I say it is. With that particular formula, "close" still works just fine. 8)
 

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Thank you papajohn. I do have Lee dippers because they come with the pacesetter dies. I got a Lyman 1200 automatic scale for fathers day many year ago and it sill looks and work like new. I never looked back to scaling any other way for rifle. But for pistols I have the Lee 4 hole Classic cast with the Pro Auto-Disk Powder Measure.

TO NY
 

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From a newbie reloader the thing you will miss IMO is messing around with different powder charges. It still astounds me how .5 grains can make a difference. I load 30-30's and have found that my rifle really likes 31 grains of H4895 with 150 grain bullets, which is a little more than the scoop gives me (unless it is heaping). I discovered the difference by making many .5 grain additions from 28 to 32. I would definitely get the scale and find the right mixture your guns like. Just my thoughts - have fun with it.
 

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"I figured I could get started with the dippers and buy a good scale later on. I really appreciate the help and advice."

Your press choice is good. You can certainly get along with the dipper set but you will be alot happier if you get the "Perfect" adjustable measure instead. Of course that mandates a powder scale too. I don't like to use Lee's Safety Scale for some user functions but it's quite accurate and very sensitive. Both are low cost.
 

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I use my Lee dippers for about 1/2 my reloads because they work and I don't have to waste time adjusting my powder measure.

I had aluminum fittings on my Lee Classic cast which lasted about 2 yrs. Broke cuz I didn't have seated just right-- my fault-- not Lees. So when I bought a Lee turret press I made sure to get the steel fittings.

rimrock
 

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"I had aluminum fittings on my Lee Classic cast which lasted about 2 yrs. Broke .."

Are you sure that was a Classic Cast press? They are all iron and steel.

It's their Challanger press that has alum parts.
 

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I don't care for the dippers since they vary for me a few tenths of a grain.
I use the dipper to get near the charge I want to put in. All on a digital scale, I then trickle til I hit the exact amount, then
dump into a funnel into the brass.
 

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I use the dippers and then top off each charge with a trickler.

However, I do not view the scale as "optional" equipment. It was among the first items purchased after a press. In fact, I'd buy a scale before I bought any kind of a powder dispenser other than the Lee dippers.

Be safe; get a good scale pronto....you'll be glad you did.
 
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