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Reloading Berger Bullets


Powder Scale

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Unread 02-01-2013, 02:07 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Smalltown, Virginia
Posts: 481
Powder Scale

Looking to upgrade my old Lee scale and I was wondering what you guys used! I was wondering whether it would be better to get a digital scale or the regular beam scale. I reload for accuracy and do not need to crank out a round a minute. I have heard great things about RCBS digital scales but i hear that they putter out after a year or so. What scales are you guys using. Thanks a bunch!
"...I shoot big cartridges, not because I am ego bound, not because they are needed to kill big game when well placed shots are made, but when an error is made, they will get you out of trouble more often then a lesser round."

--Kirby Allen
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Unread 02-01-2013, 02:48 PM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 63
Re: Powder Scale

RCBS 505 or 1010. Cant go wrong with either. I personally wouldn't trust a digital scale any further than I could throw it. Just my 2 cents.
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Unread 02-01-2013, 04:38 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Alpine,NY
Posts: 103
Re: Powder Scale

Originally Posted by metalhead View Post
RCBS 505 or 1010. Cant go wrong with either. I personally wouldn't trust a digital scale any further than I could throw it. Just my 2 cents.

second the 505....but I also have a RCBS electric scale which I have had 4 or 5 years and still works great..The one I have is 110 only...I had a Hornady battery one once and sent it back 3 times..Finally trashed it...
one shot one kill is a wonderful thing
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Unread 02-01-2013, 07:42 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Potters Hill, NC
Posts: 1,726
Re: Powder Scale

Digital.....into the 21st century....fulfill your destiny you must!...............and do not look back!

I have a RCBS Chargemaster that I bought in 2007 and it's still going strong. I have modified mine with sturdier feet from another digital scale. The CM comes with 8 leveling feet. I took the middle four completely out and used screws, washers and nuts to hold the dispenser and scale together tightly. I also did the McDonald's straw trick and put a bubble level on top of the powder reservoir.

The only problem I have had with mine is the keypad/overlay went out, rendering the dispenser useless. I called RCBS and they said pack it up and send it in and they would fix it. I am a scale technician by trade and after I convinced them I could fix it, they sent me a keypad - no charge. It took four days to arrive and I had the new one installed and the unit back up and running in 30 minutes.

In addition to the CM, I am using another digital lab balance to fine tune my loads. It is a Mettler Toledo AB104-S and measures out to the .002 in grains. I have a Omega 2 Speed Electric Powder Trickler on the way to use in conjunction with this balance.

I loaded two loads the other day for my 6.5-284 using the CM & AB104. I did the final dispense using a RCBS traditional manual trickler.

The two loads were 48.5 and 49.0 gns of H4831SC, BR2's and 130gn Berger Hunting VLD's in Lapua brass. The 48.5 load measured out at 48.522, 48.518 and 48.526gn, while the 49.0 measured out at 49.030, 49.028 and 49.030gn. There's no doubt in my mind that they are as close as they can get, right down to the grain. Looking forward to shooting those and waiting for the right conditions.

Great accuracy for shooting kittens! JohnnyK.
"The only thing necessay for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing."
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Unread 02-01-2013, 08:12 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Central ND
Posts: 1,018
Re: Powder Scale

I have had two digital(Lyman and Scheels) and went back to a balance beam. The new stuff(balance beams) isn't as good as the old balance beams. Ohaus made them years back and you can't go wrong with one of them. The new stuff is outsourced, my 505 was made in Mexico. I just spent $165 for a old Lyman D5 made by Ohaus that Scott Parker tuned up and it will show beam deflection on a half a kernel of RL15. If you want the electronic thing a ma jig you can go to dandy products and get one of these for you balance beam. Dandy Products Omega Auto Powder Trickler

Here is a writeup on Accurateshooter about his scales.

Tuning Balance Beam Scales for Precision and Repeatability Daily Bulletin

Hope this helps
"Amazing things can happen when preparation meet opportunity" Richard Schatz

"The will to win, compares little with the will to prepare to win" Donovan Moran
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Unread 02-01-2013, 08:27 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Michigan
Posts: 1,125
Re: Powder Scale

I had a cheap electronic scale that I knew would measure the same thing differently over the course of an hour or two. I started doing resesrch on high quality digital scales and pretty much found that quality = $$$. I bought a 505 as an interim and slowly stopped looking at digital scale info. Like you, I do not load volumes where the auto charge has that much value - I keep my old crappy digital on the bench to weight source brass and to spot-check loads occasionally for safety. For me, an old fashioned beam does the trick.
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Unread 02-02-2013, 07:39 AM
Junior Member
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 12
Re: Powder Scale

I have used a cheap MTM scale for a year and it works just fine.

If you need more than +- .1 or .2 grain accuracy you may not want to use one.

My question is who needs that much accuracy?

Can you see the difference in your groups.

I think not.............
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