Which progressive do I want?
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Thread: Which progressive do I want?

  1. #1
    XCR Guru ny32182's Avatar
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    Which progressive do I want?

    I am in bad need of a progressive press, as I have been ramping up my IDPA shooting recently, and need to produce 9mm in greater quantity than I can now.

    I would also like it to be rifle-capable; .308 is likely to be the largest cartridge I would ever produce in "quantity", so the ~60 something grain throw capacity I read about is probably fine.

    I "sort of" have it narrowed down to either a Dillion 550 or 650, but am still relatively early in the process and not ready to purchase just yet; still in research mode. I have a couple questions for those who know about progressives:

    -What is the real capability difference between the 550 and 650? I read the 650 is auto indexing; sounds like a nice feature all by itself.

    -Any others I should be considering?

  2. #2
    Banned EricCartmann's Avatar
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    Re: Which progressive do I want?

    Between those 2, pay the little extra and get the 650. The 650 is also easier to upgrade later on if you decide to add a case feeder.

  3. #3
    XCR Guru Bravo's Avatar
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    Re: Which progressive do I want?

    Dillon makes a good machine, no question.

    If you're going to just load blasting ammo, I'd side with the Dillon.

    If you think you might move into precision ammo, give the Hornady a look. FWIW, that's what I run.
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  5. #4
    XCR Guru MickeyC's Avatar
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    Re: Which progressive do I want?

    Dillon 650, hands down.
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  6. #5
    XCR Guru aziator's Avatar
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    Re: Which progressive do I want?

    The 650 is the first machine I bought, never regretted it. All you have to do is pull the handle then put a bullet on the next shell, repeat. Stop to fill powder and primers. I can easily load 600-800 rounds an hour at a deliberate pace. I can get the advertised 1000 an hour if I am really humping it but there really is no need to. For precision I have an old rock chuck (though from the other thread that Cartman started sounds like powder variances isn't as huge of a factor as I thought, the Dillon is more than capable of being repeatable in the loading department).
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  7. #6
    Newbie timou's Avatar
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    Re: Which progressive do I want?

    Dillon 650 since 1997. No BS warranty is great. It breaks they fix it; free. 45 ACP, 9 mm, 40 S&W and 38 Super over 100K and still going strong.

  8. #7
    Expert jrsweb's Avatar
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    Re: Which progressive do I want?

    The Dillon is a great workhorse - either model. If you are loading for volume this is the way to go. But I suggest you also have a single stage or turret unit to load more precise rifle rounds or perform a lot of the tasks in preparing cases.
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  9. #8
    XCR Guru MickeyC's Avatar
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    Re: Which progressive do I want?

    I load .308 on my Dilllon and have got 0.25" groups out of those rounds. Go slow and steady. The powder measure gave me 2754 fps for six out of ten rounds through the chrono. Go easy and it can produce very consistent ammo.
    Semper in excremento sum, solum profunditas mutat. 'Always in the shit, only the depth varies'

    The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money.... Margaret Thatcher,

    Among the many misdeeds of the British rule in India, history will look upon the act depriving a whole nation of arms as the blackest.
    Mahatma Gandhi

  10. #9
    Carbineman DeputyCWORet's Avatar
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    Re: Which progressive do I want?

    Interestingly I agree with everyone there but temper it in this fashion. I have played with Dillon, EXTREMLY nice progressive, owned a Hornady and did not like it so sold the thing for way too little and settled on a RCBS 2000 progressive that I have had over 10 years. Find the one YOU are most comfortable using. Go around to some other guys who are shooting a lot and you will find they all have their preferences. See if they will let you try their press and ask them to point out the features to you so you can make an informed decision. You know how the old saying goes "We all have opinions, just like______oles and they all stink." What is best for me may not be for you and the reverse. It is a substantial investment of time, money and the learning curve while not steep is one that is to be approached with caution so you have consistant and safe loads. There my two cents worth.....
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  11. #10
    Marksman nortac's Avatar
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    Re: Which progressive do I want?

    I've used a Dillon 550 since soon after they came out and have too much invested in extra tool heads and powder measures to seriously consider changing, plus I have a Redding T-7 and a Forster/Bonanza Co-Ax. I never really liked priming on the 550, but it works OK if you are careful and don't rush things, but that kinda is what a progressive is for. The Hornady looks nice but I can't say if it's any better. Look at the reviews on Midway for the Hornady and there seem to be a lot of former Dillon owners who prefer the Hornady. But YMMV, etc. I bought Uniquetek's Turbo Bearing for the 550 shell plate index and it does index much smoother now. Auto indexing has it's following, but I like to be able to "back up" the shell plate at times, which I'm not sure you could do with an auto index feature.
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