Ball powder metering

Discussion in 'Reloading Forum (All Calibers)' started by squirrelsplitter, Jan 13, 2020.

  1. squirrelsplitter

    squirrelsplitter

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    Hello to all. Great forum! Thanks to everyone for sharing their knowledge and experience!!
    Looking for help and any suggestions with ball powder. I have been reloading for a few years using stick powder. Dispensing from a CM 1500, 21-25 gr charges. I have done the program changes on the 1500. All good there and perfectly happy with the speed and accuracy.
    Ramshot Big Game that is a different story... inconsistent over throws and this powder ends up all over the place. I have the McDonald's straw all the way inside the feed tube with a small opening to slow the feed and the brass/aluminum reducer bushing at the outlet. Still over throws and powder keeps running out of the tube after the machine stops. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
     
  2. Straightshooter1

    Straightshooter1 Gold $$ Contributor

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    Since you're already made program changes, you might try a different approach to your use of the McDonald's Straw modification. See and try this (if you haven't already):

    https://www.primalrights.com/library/articles/re-programming-rcbs-chargemaster-combo

    IMG_6458.jpg
     
  3. SSL

    SSL Gold $$ Contributor

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    Not trying to be a smart aleck, but is your measure level? The mention of the powder running out even when the measure stops has me puzzled. Maybe even try elevating the front of the measure a little bit above level might help. Good luck to you. Hope you find a solution.
     
  4. AJC

    AJC

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    If using a ball powder pull out the straw and see if that works better. You need resistance to flow if it's just pouring out. I believe the straw works best on extruded powders.
     
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  5. JimSC

    JimSC

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  6. Dusty Stevens

    Dusty Stevens COVFEFE- Thread Derail Crew Gold $$ Contributor

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    No straw and change your programming up. If you go by the numbers provided on the net its going to be way off. You need both the slowdown and trickle points to be farther away from your end point- in other words it needs more time to settle before it gets to your mark. Take the straw out and use your reducer.
     
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  7. joshb

    joshb Gold $$ Contributor

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    I’m the dinosaur that still uses a thrower and a beam scale. I LOVE using ball powders. It takes a little time to dial in the thrower to the proper weight. You also have to use the same “force” when raising and lowering the handle. Once you get it down pat, you can throw a charge every 3-4 seconds and fill a 50 round loading block in a few minutes.
    I use a Parker tuned scale and have checked random charges from a block of 50 and never found one more than a couple kernels off of the target number.
    Now, I don’t compete and I only use this method for my 223.
    You might want to try it
     
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  8. jds holler

    jds holler Gold $$ Contributor

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    I think using a Charge Master for a fine ball powder would be a pain in the ass compared to a thrower, -- and would probably not be as accurate..

    As Josh said, with proper technique, a thrower probably couldn't be beat. jd
     
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  9. NorCalMikie

    NorCalMikie Gold $$ Contributor

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    Works for me too. No issues. Just don't care for crushing stick powder tho. Ball powder works as smooooth as glass.;):cool: No more watching the scale go UP AND DOWN for no reason AND if the power goes out? Not a problem.;)
     
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  10. squirrelsplitter

    squirrelsplitter

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    Thank you all for your replies! At this point I am leaning towards getting a thrower. Sounds like a thrower can speed up the charging process and the accuracy is there. Can anyone offer an opinion on which one? One that works well for small rifle charges, and of good quality. Thanks in advance for your input, very helpful!
     
  11. CharlieNC

    CharlieNC

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    You need a smaller diameter opening tip vs the straw. Pull the tip out of a bic pen and it will fit after a little sanding. As mentioned slow down the trickling, and earlier. A slow, fine trickling stream is key.

    The cheap Lee Perfect plastic thrower works well too.
     
  12. Longtrain

    Longtrain Silver $$ Contributor

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    I have used my Redding for years, generally with RE-15 I use it for gross weight that is placed on a EJ-123 digital scale and trickled up.

    But, with ball powder, i.e. TAC or AA2460, I can set it to be right on the money. Your throwing technique must be consistent in speed and pressure.
     
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  13. jds holler

    jds holler Gold $$ Contributor

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    I use my Uniflow with the "small bore" cylinder -- they come with two sizes and some folks aren't aware.

    My technique is to do a double tap at the top stroke, and a smart tap on the down. "click click --clack". AND -- when I do my "click click" at the top stroke it is without the case positioned at the spout. I don't bring the case into position until the final "clack".

    The fine grain ball powders measure so accurately that I'd blame the scale over the thrower for any variance. jd
     
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  14. NorCalMikie

    NorCalMikie Gold $$ Contributor

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    That's it!! Being consistent is the trick.:cool:
     
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  15. joshb

    joshb Gold $$ Contributor

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    I’m using my 40 year old RCBS thrower with the small drum.
     
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  16. Burnt Powder

    Burnt Powder

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    I have 4, an older Hornady, Lee plastic Perfect, an older Oahus, and a newer Redding. They all have pros and cons. The Lee for tinker toy stick powder and then trickle. The Hornady for rifle ball and small cut extruded, some dump and trickle with larger ball and extruded powders but good with fine ball. The Redding mostly for handgun since it’s got a small hopper and large drop funnel. The Oahu’s seldom sees the light of day, too hard to adjust and isn’t accurate enough compared to my other three.

    BP
     
  17. Laurie

    Laurie

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    IME, the Belgian manufactured Ramshot powders have the smallest diameter of any ball type rifle grade powders I've used over the years. They run like nobody's business. Breathe hard, or have a butterfly flap its wings outside the house and there is a risk of some powder over-run. In the ChargeMaster, there is also a serious secondary risk should spillage happen - eg inadvertently brushing the mouth of the dispensing tube even fractionally when lifting the scale pan off the platen. The resulting spillage of tiny kernels jump and skip all over the scale casing and some end up underneath the platen. Sooner or later one or two go down inside the scale body and if a kernel ends up flattened between base of the platen rod type extension that rests on the bar that actually operates the scale cell, then the scales and by extension the whole device loses its accuracy. No amount of recalibration will return it to working order IME. You then either return the device for service or open the casing yourself to very carefully brush the foreign matter away with a camera lens brush or similar ... but doing so voids the warranty. (One of the screws has a very sticky, high-tech piece of security tape over it, so RCBS knows you've been inside.)

    I'm sure that the suggestions given in earlier posts re leveling and resetting the dispensing speeds / durations will at the very least help greatly, more likely work, but the vibration etc spillage risk is always there.

    I used to have a whole battery of volumetric throwers from a Lee Perfect up to the Redding BR30 and two different Harrels 'Culver' models, but sold them all bar one after getting an automated dispenser, the one retained being a pretty elderly Hornady 'Bench Rest Grade' measure which I preferred above all my other mechanical types. This venerable machine then saw little use until I started loading for the 6.5 Grendel which is particularly suited to small-grain ball powders. Thrown charges are remarkably consistent with Ramshot Tac and Wild Boar (a Europe-only product, but as its loads data are identical to those for Accurate-2520, I'm pretty sure they're one and the same).
     
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  18. BoydAllen

    BoydAllen

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    Why use a CM for ball powders when you can throw them to the same or closer standards? I get the stick powder advantage, but ball? IMO it is just a waste of time. Of course I have taken the time to work on technique quite a bit, but for these powders it is dead simple. Practice with a scale to work out the details of your technique, and then check your setting at the start and every so often.
     
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  19. squirrelsplitter

    squirrelsplitter

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    You guys are great! Thanks so much for your input. Trying to decide which powder throw to get for filling 17 and 20 cal cases.
    21 to 26 gr loads.
    Let me know your preference please.
    RCBS
    Hornady
    Redding
    Lee
    ??
     
  20. jds holler

    jds holler Gold $$ Contributor

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    Here's my preference when I'm feeling nostalgic.:p

    012 copy.JPG


    Otherwise I go with the RCBS with small drum. If I am weighing like 50 or more grains, I go big drum. I don't know if other brands have two different drum sizes. jd
     

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    Last edited: Jan 14, 2020
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