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Dillon question

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by JRT, Oct 12, 2018.

  1. JRT

    JRT NES Member

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    I have a few question regarding Dillon reloaders. I have never reloaded in my life and my primary reason for jumping in now is to experiment with different 6.5 Creedmoor loads to see if I can improve my scores. Mostly Palma course out to 1000 yards. I believe I only have interest in 6.5 Creedmoor, in the future I may want to reload 6.0 Creedmoor, 204 Ruger, 5.56x45 and 9mm. I only state this so you can tell me if Dillion is the wrong choice overall.

    My first question - Is the primary difference between the 550C and the 650 the fact that the shell plate auto-rotates with a handle pull. This seems worth it for the money, thoughts?

    2nd question - I don't see a caliber conversion kit for 6.0 Creedmoor, does this mean it is not available with Dillon to reload as of today? This is not a deal breaker but I'm curious.

    Last question (for now) - Should I buy all of the accessories for the reloader, either 550C or 650? On the 650 I think I would pass on the auto case loader, its expensive and I'm not going to be doing 1000s of rounds at a time. Probably 80-100 at a time.

    Last last - I'm not doing this to save money but it would be a nice benefit. Is reloading significantly less than buying cases of match grade Hornady? Figure about $25USD for 20 rounds.

    Thank you!!
     
  2. wmccurdy53

    wmccurdy53

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    1st - Yes, the primary difference is that the shell plate auto rotates, but there are others. I believe the priming system is different.
    The auto rotation is one of the things that drove me to the 650. Auto rotation makes it very difficult to double charge, you can still do it but you really have to try.

    2nd - The caliber conversion kit is just the correct mixture of parts. Shell plate is most critical, you can get by with close enough with the other stuff.

    Last - No, don't but all the bells and whistles right away. Use the press for a while then decide which accessories you want. You can add them one at a time if funds get tight.

    Last last - You won't save a lot reloading rifle rounds but you will save.
    If you are not shooting a lot, it will take a while to pay your self back on rifle rounds.
    The real benefit is the ability to get exactly what you want to shoot as consistently as you want to be.
    Pistol rounds run me about 12.00 per 100 assuming you already have the brass.

    Tip - You mention loading 80-100 rounds at a time. I would suggest you load in increments of 100, primers come in quantities of 100. I don't leave primers in my press and it is a pain in my ass to count primers.
     
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  3. JRT

    JRT NES Member

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    Thank you! I have a lot to learn, reading your answer to my second question confirms that much!

    I just ordered the 650 with just some basic accessories, strong stand, tools and holder and trays. The auto indexing of the shell plate seems like a big deal to me. I also found a shop here in Philly that is well stocked and holds reloading classes. I signed up for the basic course, should be just enough to make me dangerous.

    Thanks again!
     
  4. 76Too

    76Too NES Member

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    1. look into an RCBS Rockchucker Supreme kit and the classifieds here to start out.
    2. do your homework
    3. spend more time than you ever thought you would making bullets and testing them
    4. spend more money than you ever would have spent on just buying ammo
    5. don't look back :D

    i enjoy reloading almost as much as shooting, but it can get really expensive, no doubt about it.
     
  5. JRT

    JRT NES Member

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    This feels exactly like what I just got myself into lol! I'm jumping in to experiment with loads, feels like it could be a lot of fun!
     
  6. Uzi2

    Uzi2 NES Member

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    Reloading can be fun, even theraputic for some...but its serious bussiness and you are not playing with toys, especially with rifle ammo....it can be injurious and even deadly.

    I highly suggest that you buy a couple of books and read up on the basics, then take a reloading class or hang around an experienced reloader that is willing to teach you the safe and correct proceedures to follow.

    As for buying a Dillon (progressive) press.....that really depends on many factors, time, budget, how much you want to reload.....100 or 1000's.
    To start, a single stage press might be best until you are thoroughly confident in your skills.
     
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  7. andrew1220

    andrew1220 NES Member

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    Dillons are great but I wouldn’t rule out a nice single stage press for brass prep (in addition to the Dillon). I had some issues with my Hornady LNL progressive press, flexing when I resized rifle brass. This lead to inconsistent sizing and “push back” of the case shoulders.

    Bought a Lee classic cast press solely for resizing rifle brass and my problems seem to have disappeared. YMMV.
     
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  8. Jbarila

    Jbarila NES Member

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    Smart start. You will love the 650 once you get used to it. Taking the classes is an excellent start. Good Luck!
     
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  9. Supermoto

    Supermoto NES Member

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    80-100 at a time for precision rifle. I would get a good single stage and a case prep station

    If you are going to do 5.56 and 9mm later. I would definitely go with a 650 and case loader. Plus individual tool heads for prepping 5.56

    The auto index of the 650 is worth it if you are going to be cranking out rounds and want to do it quickly
     
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  10. JRT

    JRT NES Member

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    I was thinking a case/brass cleaner was optional, only if I really wanted perfectly polished brass. I've been binging on videos since I ordered my 650 and it looks like its an important but not required step, mostly to extend the life of your dies. Do you guys clean every time you reload? If I'm going to clean I will want them to sparkle like the sun, walnut or corn?
     
  11. andrew1220

    andrew1220 NES Member

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    Wet tumble will give you the shiniest finish inside and out. But between walnut and corn cob, corn cob will give you a shinier finish in my experience - that’s all I use.
     
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  12. EddieZoom

    EddieZoom NES Member

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    Yes, tumble before reload. I'm a walnut fan but others prefer corn. Somewhere on here is a post about brass tumbling from @DukeInFlorida that I've found to be the best thing ever written on the topic. Do a search and listen to what the man says.
     
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  13. Emacs

    Emacs

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    I don't know anyone who doesn't tumble every time. I used to tumble for hours with corn media and car polish to get like-new brass, then the magic of reloading wore off and I realized it doesn't matter. Now I just tumble for maybe an hour.
     
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  14. PatMcD

    PatMcD NES Member

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    I thought Palma was .308 or .223 only?
    In any event, for precision shooting at 1000 yards, I wouldn't be using a progressive press. I use the Dillon 650 for any and all loading out to 600 yards, but if I was to stretch out to 1000, I'd want to trickle up my charges. Yes, you can do that on a 650, but it's a pain and I'd rather use a Forester or Rockchucker for that.

    6mm Creedmoor conversions: wouldn't that be exactly the same as the 6.5 creedmoor except maybe use a .243 powder die?
     
  15. Wickedcoolname

    Wickedcoolname

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    I have never reloaded dirty brass...it's always been through the tumbler. Mine doesn't often look bright and shiny but it is there long enough to knock off the dirt and crud. As a matter of fact my media is so old it's probably making my brass duller. Time for some fresh stuff.
    I've always used walnut if I'm range scrounging and the cases are very dirty. Otherwise I use corn cob with a bit of case cleaner additive, I'm not sure which one, maybe dillon...maybe Midway. It's basically liquid car polish.
     
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  16. JRT

    JRT NES Member

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    To be clear, I'm not shooting sanctioned PARMA events. We are following the shooting format. I should have said long range shooting, we are using scopes as well, which is also not allowed in PARMA.

    Thanks for the feedback, I went with the 650 because I wanted to plan for higher volume reloading, its seems reloading is like rifles and one just doesn't do the trick. If I jump into other matches and get serious I will undoubtably have to look at more precision reloaders. What I have learned in a weekend of reading and binging on reloading videos is that "getting serious" probably means a few different reloaders.
     
  17. Jbarila

    Jbarila NES Member

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    EFECAA8D-3690-4544-828B-645EE9222DFF.jpeg 4D4D1ECC-D2B8-4580-852D-0B57C2547A52.jpeg Got tired of the vibration tumbler, too slow and too small. I could not see buying a plastic cement mixer too expensive.
    Had a bunch of parts laying around so I built a 5 gallon tumbler driven by a car window motor. Cleans a ton of brass in half the time. Corn cob and a squirt of Nu-finish.
     
  18. andrew1220

    andrew1220 NES Member

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    Very cool
     
  19. tjr

    tjr NES Member

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    How are you driving the rear of the pail?
     
  20. Jbarila

    Jbarila NES Member

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    Car window motor. Removed the gear and a 1/2 inch connector nut fit. Through bolt through bottom of bucket. 12 volt computer power supply. I added speed control from ebay it was like 10 bucks. Thats all i spent had everything else. Cleans a ton of brass over a gallon at a time.
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2018
  21. beaker

    beaker NES Member

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    Not optional, you need a vibratory or similar case cleaner and corn cobb media. That is how you clean the brass prior to reloading.
     
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  22. pastera

    pastera

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    You can dump the deprimed cases in a bucket with hot water and a little Dawn, mix it up and then rinse.
    This won't get them to sparkle but it does get the dirt and grit off them.
     
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  23. chidiver

    chidiver

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    I hate to talk someone down from a toy. But if your interest in reloading is more in the precision world (6.5 Creed, etc.), I would push you towards a quality single stage setup. Progressive presses like the 650 are more about volume than precision. I load a ton of pistol and hoser rifle rounds on my 650, where 500+ rounds per hour is very achievable once you are set up. But precision rifle is all about extreme consistency. And that is only possible with precision powder metering done one round at a time. Very addictive and rewarding to dial in the right recipe for each gun. But not a volume exercise.
     
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  24. andrew1220

    andrew1220 NES Member

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    Agreed
     
  25. JRT

    JRT NES Member

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    I addressed this above. I agree 100% with your statement. I’m happy I bought the 650, it probably won’t end there as a precision reloader is likely in my future.

    I reloaded my first 100 rounds over the weekend and will mess around with them this week at the range. I was blessed to be introduced to an old timer right in my neighborhood with vast reloading experience. He helped me set up everything and walked me through the first 100 rounds. All the while telling stories of wildcatting cartridges and hunting trips. We are going to precision hand load 40 rounds tonight and do some comparison with the 100 I did on the 650.

    Finally, thank you to everybody who contributed. Your input has been invaluable.
     
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  26. DukeInFlorida

    DukeInFlorida NES Member

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    I've just added a pretty complete ARTICLE on my Reloading Class web site on this subject.
    Can't find any previous posts here about it, but I think you will find my web site article most helpful. It covers media tumbling, ultrasonic cleaning, and stainless steel pin tumbling.
    LINK HERE
     
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