doesn't take much to make it run

by bj @, Wednesday, June 07, 2017, 20:44 (74 days ago) @ SKgrips

You don't have to buy a lot of add-on stuff to make it run but a few extra things will help.

Depending on your budget, what calibers you use, and how often you switch will determine what will help you.

Toolheads help everybody. Set up one for each caliber.

If you load "overlap" calibers such as .44 special and .44 magnum, you can get by with one toolhead between them. One sizing die is fine but you need 2 seating dies and 2 powder dies, or at least a couple of those spacer washers that go under the dies to set up for .44 magnum. Buy extra lock rings for the dies so the lock rings lock to the dies and stay in place if you take the dies out. For .44 spl you put in the .44 spl seating die and the .44 spl powder die and go. To switch to .44 mag you unscrew the seating and powder dies and put in the .44 mag versions. Of course for a little extra money you can just buy an additional toolhead.

I think some kind of rack to store the toolheads would be convenient but I haven't come up with a design that I like. You can put the toolhead with dies and the conversion kit in a zip lock back and stick in a drawer.

If you load the same load frequently you need extra powder measures. Or you could buy the slides and set them for different charges, then just swap the slides.

If you don't use a lot of different powders, it would be real convenient to "calibrate" your powder measure for each one. Fill the measure with powder, drop 5 charges and average them. Then twist the adjustment screw about 3-5 turns, drop 5 charges and average them. You can calculate how much the charge weight of each powder changes for one turn of the screw. This makes it real convenient to quickly change from one load to another- you know how many turns of the screw it takes to get in the ballpark.

There are 3 allen wrench sizes that are commonly used for caliber conversions. Take those 3 out and keep them handy. I've often thought it would be even more convenient then the normal allen wrenches to locate hex bits in those 3 sizes and use them in a screwdriver handle.

With a big enough budget you can get 2 machines, leave one set up for small primers and one for large primers. I've also read of people buying a separate square deal B and leaving it set up for one caliber that they load frequently.

I've had opportunity to use an old version of the 550. The chute that loaded rounds fall down is not very reliable. It helped to make a "fence" to put along the side of the chute to guide rounds into the bin. It also helped to add a little bit of weight to the top of the plastic rod that pushes down on the primers.


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