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  #1  
Old 03-30-2012, 02:15 PM
Hammer1 Hammer1 is offline
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Vibrator on Dillon powder measure




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An engineering friend of mine in Idaho has been an ammunition handloader for 50+ years using single-stage RCBS equipment and weighing powder charges for consistency. He just got a Dillon progressive 550 press this past week – his first experience with a progressive press.

He immediately noticed the poor powder throwing consistency with giant swings when using extruded IMR 3031 powder for his 223 Remington for use in his AR-15. I suggested he try a ball powder, which he eventually will, but he has a good load for IMR 3031 and a lot of that extruded powder on hand. He was basically combining the two worst things you can – long extruded powder grains and a very small case neck (0.224”). Think Dillon only recommends ball powder or small grain powder for case necks less than 7mm.

My friend then had a thought. He added a small vibrator motor to the side of the Dillon powder measure. His thrown powder charges are now extremely consistent – more so than one should have any right to expect.


For the what it’s worth department, my shotshell loading machine – a Spolar – comes from the factory with a vibrator which is supposed to improve the consistency of both powder and shot drops and improve the feeding of the primer system too.

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  #2  
Old 03-30-2012, 02:28 PM
TheTinMan TheTinMan is offline
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And here I thought you were going to tell us that his wife was mad at him...

I'm sure that the vibrating motor improves consistency.

I've had problems with my Hornady measure throwing increasing loads over the first 20 or 30 throws. Last weekend, I tried an experiment. Load up measure 1/3, tap base repeatedly for a minute, load up to 2/3, tap another minute, top it off and tap some more. Then throw out the first charge because it will be HEAVY. After that, I got very consistent charges provided that I used the same throwing motion each time.

However, I've noticed with stick powders that I get inconsistent charges whenever a stick gets caught at the edge of the rotor. I've learned that if I feel a catch and then cut, I need to double check that powder charge. Won't work on a progressive press though due to lack of "feel".
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  #3  
Old 03-30-2012, 02:49 PM
Rembrandt Rembrandt is offline
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So that's how it's done, been trying to figure out how to remove the powder from my electric toothbrush bristles.......
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  #4  
Old 03-30-2012, 03:35 PM
BlueOvalBandit BlueOvalBandit is offline
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So, you mean we DON'T have to strap a purple rabbit to my powder measure anymore to get consistent drops...? This will lead to less awkward moments with shooting buddies in the reloading room for sure.
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  #5  
Old 03-30-2012, 04:14 PM
saread saread is offline
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Strapping a small aquarium air pump to the powder measure is an old trick. I find that a Uniflow does a much better job than a Dillon throwing stick powders consistently. Using a baffle in the reservoir also helps.
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  #6  
Old 03-30-2012, 04:15 PM
Jim Watson Jim Watson is online now
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Location: Florence, Alabama, USA
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I have an aquarium air pump banded to my Dillon powder measure.
It helps get more uniform charges of flake powder like Solo 1000 and Clays.
I hope it works with 700X because I have a supply and seldom load 12 gauge these days.

It cost $6.00 at CheapMart.
There was a purpose built vibrator advertised in the gunzines but none actually available. Just as well, they wanted nearly $40 for it.
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