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WyoChukar
PostPosted: Thu Jan 25, 2018 9:22 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 16 Jul 2015
Posts: 703
Location: Hudson,Wy

Well, I did hand grind the base on an early Mec 650 20 ga. press to allow the bigger 16 ga. hulls pass around. Then it was just a matter of swapping some 16 ga. parts where needed. Saved a bunch of cash converting an old loader that was part of trade.

As far as "tweaks" go, My 650's have spring loaded wad guide rods. This pulls the guide down on to the hull as the press handle is brought down, saving many, many hang ups. Especially with ratty hull mouths.

I read the part about shot bridging above. The best way I know to solve the problem is to disconnect the auto charge feature on a progressive to allow manual charge drops like with a single stage. Raise the handle on the press part way so that the drop tube is just inside the hull mouth but below the wad guide, then drop the shot. Pretty much solves the problem. I have successfully dropped #2 and #1 steel in the 16 ga. this way. Works great.

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MaximumSmoke
PostPosted: Fri Jan 26, 2018 8:54 am  Reply with quote
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Joined: 01 Dec 2005
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Location: Minneapolis

Good idea on that vibrator, Hammer Bill.

One my old registered skeet shooting friends swears by 800-X and loads a lot of it (28 gauge, and also the 20 I think), which, being a large flake powder, is notorious for its tendency to drop inconsistently. Amongst his other profitable ventures, he is a former barber. He duct-tapes an old electric hair clipper to his progressive reloaders, and rigs a limit switch so that the clipper turns on at some position in each throw of the handle. Crazy, huh? Apparently it works great. He uses Pacific/Hornady 366's as well as MEC9000's.

I've never had the need to do this, but like your version of the vibrator idea, Hammer Bill, it is nifty and useful. I wonder sometimes why the "Cadillacs of Reloading" (Spolar and P-W) don't add this feature to distinguish their costly products a little more. For sure the trapshooters would gobble it up.

Cheers!
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Dogchaser37
PostPosted: Fri Jan 26, 2018 9:53 am  Reply with quote
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Joined: 08 Aug 2011
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Not to stir the pot but......

Did you know that you can get single digit Standard Deviation figures and Extreme Variation figures of less than 15 FPS on a chronograph, by running a very standard MEC 9000 series? No weighing shot and powder charges, no massaging anything, but loads right off the machine. I have repeated this test several times with my Sporting Clays loads.

There are so many variables in the average shotshell load that as long as you are dropping +/- 0.3 grain(this is very normal) you aren't going to see any velocity issues.

The keys are a powder/primer combination that like each other, a bit of wad pressure (enough to bump the gauge at least), the proper wad column height and a nice tight well formed crimp. Selecting a load with the chamber pressure north of 9,000 PSI doesn't hurt either.

That's why the reloading machine manufacturers do not introduce vibration, it isn't necessary.

I am not saying that more consistent drops hurt anything but they don't really help either.

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skeettx
PostPosted: Fri Jan 26, 2018 10:49 am  Reply with quote
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Joined: 15 Apr 2007
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Location: Amarillo, Texas

The STEW was good and tasty Smile
Mike


Last edited by skeettx on Fri Jan 26, 2018 11:12 am; edited 1 time in total
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Dogchaser37
PostPosted: Fri Jan 26, 2018 11:11 am  Reply with quote
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Mike,

I just want it to be tasty and NOT spicy!!!

Someday you will have to teach me that particular technique!

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MaximumSmoke
PostPosted: Fri Jan 26, 2018 11:12 am  Reply with quote
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Right on, DC37. I have long since given up trying to be more precise with my progressives (high volume loading for skeet and other clay target games), but from what you say, perhaps I should fugidaboudit and trust my 600's to produce good enough consistency for all else (hunting loads). Anyway, I sure as heck don't experience ammo inconsistency with my reloads in registered skeet shooting or anywhere else, nor can I blame any variation in my shooting performance on any ammo I use, my reloads or whatever brand, if velocity is anywhere between about 1100 and maybe up to 1400. Mostly, it just needs to go bang. I've seen my skeet compatriots break a lot of targets quite nicely with outright bloopers. The shot rolls out maybe 700 to 1000 fps, and the target still runs into it. I think there is a lot of unnecessary monkey-motion going on in the heads of a lot of skeet shooters about their ammo. You don't need great precision to shoot skeet -- just decent shooter repeatability. Long shots at sporties require best stuff though, I imagine. Small details matter in rifle loading, but not so much, I guess in the shotgun.

We shotshell reloaders do get carried away with details that probably don't matter much, probably because we have the capacity to fiddle with them, and then we speculate about the results to justify our fiddling. However, real test experience such as yours separates the wheat from the chaff, so thanks for the info.

I still feel like being slightly more precise about my hunting loads, which I load in low enough volume to cause me to do what I mentioned in my previous paragraph. I can, so I do. It makes me feel good. Silly me, perhaps!

Cheers!
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skeettx
PostPosted: Fri Jan 26, 2018 11:12 am  Reply with quote
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Come to Amarillo and let us play
Rifle, pistol, shotgun
What fun
Mike

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Dogchaser37
PostPosted: Fri Jan 26, 2018 11:20 am  Reply with quote
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Smoke,

The only reloads I weigh the powder charges on are those with 800-X and Steel powders.

If you are consistent with your movements on the single stage stuff, the reloads come out just as good as stuff off the progressives.

I do like to load the hunting loads one at a time and really massage them, but I don't really think they are all that much better, I just like spending time on my reloading room messing around sometimes.

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Dogchaser37
PostPosted: Fri Jan 26, 2018 11:20 am  Reply with quote
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Mike,

Be careful i might just show up someday!! Cool Cool

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brent
PostPosted: Fri Jan 26, 2018 12:36 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 02 Oct 2014
Posts: 45
Location: Iowa

Hammer bill wrote:
I've taken a small electrics motor out of a fan from a wood burner. Mounted it very close to the side of my mec 9000. Made a small counter weight for the shaft just so you can hardly feel the vibration. But the powder drops are very very close from one to another. Very constant drops


I've done the same thing with a droptube for bpcr, but I used a 3 volt motor from Radio Shack and a cast .25 cal bullet for the counterweight. It's run with 2 d-cell batteries. The batteries cost more than 50% of the entire set up.
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WyoChukar
PostPosted: Fri Jan 26, 2018 4:10 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 16 Jul 2015
Posts: 703
Location: Hudson,Wy

I like the idea of vibration...for only one scenario. 800-x in quantities less than about 17 grains (28 ga. stuff) has caused me problems with bloopers and weak loads. I usually just tap the bottle with each charge since I use single stage for that one anyway, but if I ever used the 28 enough to justify a progressive, I would engineer something of the sort.

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WyoChukar
PostPosted: Fri Jan 26, 2018 4:18 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 16 Jul 2015
Posts: 703
Location: Hudson,Wy

One other custom feature I forgot about. When I built a 3 1/2" 12 ga. conversion years ago I took a second metal crimping die and cut off enough to get full length case support. To join the two I made a collar out of PVC with a single split then used a wide hose clamp that put pressure on both sides of the seam. The result was being able to put serious crimp pressure on the steel shot loads without wording about crinkling the straight wall hulls. The die goes down past the metal head enough to keep things from buckling- a common problem when using wads with no cushion section and ever so slightly imperfect column height.

I haven't used the setup in years since my conclusion after many years of testing the 3 1/2" 12 ga. is that I am putting a boy in man's clothing then expecting him to do a man's job. When the situation truly calls for a 10 gauge. I use a 10 gauge.

I mention this modification because I would like to find a couple of the old 16 ga. metal dies and extend one slightly to alleviate occasional crinkling I get with certain loads.

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odog59
PostPosted: Sat Jan 27, 2018 11:21 am  Reply with quote



Joined: 17 Mar 2013
Posts: 11

ONE UPGRADE I REALLY LOVE IS THE BALLISTIC PRODUCTS SUPER CROWN CRIMPER. AT LEAST THERES SOMETHING FROM BP YOU CAN TRUST Rolling Eyes
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Pa's Sweet16
PostPosted: Sat Jan 27, 2018 11:30 am  Reply with quote



Joined: 24 Feb 2011
Posts: 31
Location: God's country - Michigan's UP

Fantastic idea about the pencil eraser!! John
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John Singer
PostPosted: Sat Jan 27, 2018 12:17 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 03 Sep 2014
Posts: 146
Location: Brooklyn, MI

I purchased Hornady crimp starters to replace the original MEC crimp starters.

https://www.midwayusa.com/product/1165140284/hornady-crimp-starter-12-gauge

They provide a much deeper and more positive start even with new hulls and they cost a fraction of the BP product. The 12 gauge Hornady crimp starter works on both my 12 gauge and 16 gauge presses.

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