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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
After my not so successful start at reloading with a friend last fall, I kind of put that project on the back burner for a while, but next week I am refinancing the land and all my loans, and my payments are going down, and I'll have a little bit of cash to spend on various projects.

I'm looking to finish getting all the gear together that I need to reload. I have an RCBS Jr press that was given to me on indefinite long term loan, I have dies, I have a Lyman balance beam type powder scale, what I still need to get is a powder dispenser and priming set up. It looks like I can buy parts from RCBS to prime cases on the press, so I will just buy that when the time comes, but I don't really know what powder dispenser to get. When I reloaded at my friend's house he had some kind of RCBS unit, but the cylindrical powder we were using didn't seem to dispense very well out of it. Is that the case with any dispenser, or are some worse than others?

In other words, what powder dispenser should I get? I don't mind buying used off of classifieds, GB or ebay. If it matters, I would be reloading for 35 Rem, 35 Whelen, and eventually 6.5 Swede. I currently don't have any handguns that I would reload for.
 

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El Kabong
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You cant go wrong with an RCBS or Redding powder measure.
Stay away from Lee's Perfect powder measures. They wear out quickly.

I would check the local gun shows, both Portland and Vancouver. Might even come clean up to the Centralia and Shelton shows.

On priming, you may find that the one that comes on the press tends to grab your finger if you dont pay attention on every primer you seat. I took mine off and stuffed them in a nob somewhere.

I deal with a lot of military cases, so I use a RCBS auto primer. I know a lot of guys use the hand primers. Ive never owned one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks. The primer tool I used at my friend's place was an RCBS unit that was separate from the press, and bolted to the bench. It worked really slick, but I wasn't sure what it was called, and I haven't seen it on store shelves in the places I've looked.

I was wondering about the Lee powder measure, since they seem so cheap.
 

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I use a Lee perfect powder measure, but I don't use the method they suggest of converting to or from grains to CC's. I just adjust it until it drops the weight I am looking for and run with it. Works fine and is not expensive.
I prime on my Lee 4 hole turret but I use it as a single stage for rifle loads. I broke 2 handles on a Lee hand primer so I stopped using them and just use the press.
 

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Hey, woodrat, I got some excellent recommendations in the following thread last year when I was going through the same decision process:

http://www.marlinowners.com/forums/index.php/topic,63808.0.html

After carefully considering everyone's comments and my budget, and studying all the reviews on Midway's site, I went with the RCBS Uniflow and ordered a powder baffle to go with it. No complaints so far, sure beats not having a measure. I was thinking about going with the Redding 3BR, instead, but ultimately the RCBS was a lot less pricey and seemed like it was probably equally good. I additionally picked up an RCBS Little Dandy on clearance at a local shop along with a few rotors (got the thing and two rotors for half off). I figured it'd be neat to have for repeatable and fast pistol reloading. It uses fixed volume cavity rotors, but with range ammo I figure it's not necessary to have too much resolution on powder volume, so I picked up a few rotors to give me some options with .380, .38 Special, and .45 Auto. I'm thinking about adding a .40 to the stable so might need a few more. Have yet to use the Little Dandy (really, really need to do some reloading soon), but it looks super cool. Only downside is that if you buy a bunch of rotors at full price, the total cost can start to add up.
 

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I have the Redding Master Measure #3 renamed in later years, been plugging away since 1969 took me through 13.5 years of high power bench rest competition. I know it has thrown over 30,000 powder charges and still works like new.


RCBS bench mounted primer seater I have one and they work great use a standard shell holder for seating.


I prefer the hand held primer seaters you can feel such as the Lee, RCBS makes one that is stronger though I've never had one.

Bottom line buy the best equiptment you can, you are financing it so go with the best, upgrade your press from the Jr to the Rockchucker while your at it. 40 yrs from now you won't regret doing so.
 

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Ditto on the handheld priming tools, good feel and easier to deal with. I broke about two dozen Lee handheld priming tools, now I have a Hornady and it works fine. It's a bit cheaper than that RCBS tool, and a bit more flexible, at least to me.
 

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The RCBS ain't bad. I like it, feels good in my hand, good feel on primer seating, and pretty easy to use. I have the universal one that requires no shellholders. Sometimes I think that it'd be better to have shellholders so that the cartridges would always slide in and out perfect, but the self adjusting jaws work well enough. I'm not sure how the other ones work, but with the RCBS you have to keep it almost perfectly upright to never have a primer accidently seat backwards.
 

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El Kabong
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I too have Redding powder measure. The RCBS is as good.

Lee's Perfect measure is a cheap plastic disposable short line item.
I wore two out, and have a third replacement one from Cabela's if you want it for $20.
Its my back, back up.

I have three beam scales I dont use any more. They are my back, back, and back up ones.
When I got my RCBS 10-10 I can never go back.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I see a lot more older, used Reddings on ebay and such, than RCBS units, I may end up with a Redding just for that reason, but it sounds like I'll be fine either way. I think I will try to set aside the money to buy the RCBS bench mounted auto priming tool. I still can't find one in any store near here, but I see them on ebay and GB from time to time.
 

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Ditto on using a handheld primer tool.

A friend recommended to get one. He said he liked the "feel" of knowing when it's seated, and how hard you are pushing to seat.

Now that I've had one a couple years...I'll have to say I agree in full. Mine is just a lee, but works fine and I haven't broken anything yet. I imagine i've done a few thousand rounds with it and that about all.

I think from lee factory sales.com they are about sixteen bucks or so.
Their powder measure is a a little under twenty...I think.
 

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For powder measures, a good used one can be a steal (if you can see it first). I've got two Ohaus Duo-Measures (one bought new), a Hornady LnL (new) and an old Redding dial measure. They all work well for certain applications (but nothing will throw long stick powders accurately). I have two hand primers. One is a Forster universal model, and the other the original Lee Autoprime. I must just be lucky, 'cause I've never had a problem with the Lee in over twenty years. Then again, I occasionally clean the moving parts and lube them with a bit of Mobil 1. The Lee is easier to use than the old Forster, which requires careful adjustment of each of the three 'jaws', not to mention what a PITA loading the primer magazine is compared to the Lee's built-in feed tray/flipper.
 

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Powder throws are great to have in reloading, not a must unless you have a lot of time. ;D I have quite a few myself, I have two RCBS Uniflows and three Lyman #55's and one Dillon. I also have an old Ideal which is a Lyman #55 but very old. They all work great and the RCBS and Lyman probably cost about the same. As far as accuracy goes the Lyman is the best and all extruded powders will make all models sticky or difficult to turn as individual powders are cut. The secret is to throw just under the desired weight that you need then trickel the remainder in with a powder trickler while the powder is on the scale. Ball powders are very accurate and you can get the weight exact and no problems turning the handle.

The first picture is one of my RCBS Uniflow units and it is on a stand.

The second picture is two of my Lyman throws, left is standard #55 and the right is the Black Powder #55 classic.

The third picture is just a shot of a weighing stage with a powder trickler.

Picture four is my old Ideal powder throw. 8)
 

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El Kabong
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puke said:
Ditto on using a handheld primer tool.

A friend recommended to get one. He said he liked the "feel" of knowing when it's seated, and how hard you are pushing to seat.
The hand held ones are prone to needing parts replaced. Not so the Auto Primer at 3x the cost.

I can feel every primer being seated, when I switched to the Auto Primer. I quit concaving the primers.
For mil surp cases, you can regulate the force needed to seat the primer.
 

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As far as seating primers goes, I have the hand primer and do not like it, POS in my book. I use either the RCBS primer system on the press or ever better yet I have a bench mounted RCBS primer system which takes up more room on the bench, so if your needing room the press system would be the best and it has always worked well for me. The bench mount priming tool I have is number #1 in my book. ;)
 

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My Hornady Priming tool (hand-held) was a pleasant surprise after using the Lee for so many years. It has a few idiosyncrasies, but if you pay attention it works just fine. And even with my Gorilla-thumbs, nothing has broken after a year. I have to say I'm impressed. The sensitivity is awesome.
 

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That's pretty awesome, Joe. I really wanted one of those back when I was buying a priming system, but they cost more than twice what the hand held ones do, and they were out of stock at the time, and I don't have a very large bench, so I chickened out. Someday...
 

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miatakix said:
That's pretty awesome, Joe. I really wanted one of those back when I was buying a priming system, but they cost more than twice what the hand held ones do, and they were out of stock at the time, and I don't have a very large bench, so I chickened out. Someday...
I really like the RCBS bench mount priming system and I was at Wal-Mart when I found mine, I hate to shop there but when I was I saw it on the shelf for $11 I almost broke my arm trying to grab it before someone else. ;D It was the only one and I have not seen one since. The system is a lot like the RCBS priming system on the press but is easier to change from small to large primers and is done in a snap with no tools.

The first picture shows all the parts including both the large and small primer cups and L & S tubes.

The second photo is put together

third is a view showing the press handle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Yes, that's the priming tool that I used at my friend's house. I haven't seen one in any store ever since, but I think I will make the extra effort to locate one. It was pretty slick.
 
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