Homegrown powder checker

Questions and discussions and troubleshooting Lee Load Master presses

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llangston1
Posts: 134
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2014 10:01 pm

Homegrown powder checker

Postby llangston1 » Thu Jan 25, 2018 11:15 pm

Has anyone in the group ever developed their own power cop/load checker for use with a LLM? I have had a few squib rounds in my last 9MM batch using the auto drum and I am thinking I need a more positive method of checking the powder level in each case. I normally look into each case prior to seating a bullet and eyeball the powder level but that method has apparently failed. I was thinking about some sort of device modeled after a Q-tip or a small cylinder that you sit inside the case after stage 3 and look to see how high it sticks out of the case. I don't want to compress the powder like a ram but just set it down on top of the powder and visually see how high it sticks out of the case. The q-tip's handle or the cylinder would be calibrated off press with verified powder loads. I am not looking for a .1 of a grain accuracy but perhaps .5 or at least 1 grain differences. I am loading with Titegroup at 4.1 to 4.2 grains and a 115 grain copper plated RN projectile. I assume any load above 3 grains would definitely push the bullet out of the barrel.

I tried weighing each round after its made but I am not sure that the variation in bullet and case weights would mask any powder load variations. I have found several cases that were 2.3 grains heavier than most of the range brass I used. I use XTreme Bullets and they all seem to be within a few tenths of a grain from 115.

I am reloading these rounds are for my wife so I need to be extra careful with them. I never had a squib round using the auto disk dropper. I know I could use a real powder cop die but I prefer to keep my die set up as is with powder in 3, bullet seat in 4 and crimp in 5.

Any suggestions, recommendations? Would this concept work or just cause more problems?

john127
Posts: 120
Joined: Fri Feb 15, 2008 3:44 am

Re: Homegrown powder checker

Postby john127 » Fri Feb 16, 2018 4:36 pm

That's interesting. Would've thought that the Auto Drum would be more fool proof than that. Did this happen using a powder that would be more prone to this? Anyway, thanks for the 'heads up'.

llangston1
Posts: 134
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2014 10:01 pm

Re: Homegrown powder checker

Postby llangston1 » Sat Feb 17, 2018 4:39 pm

I am not sure when the errors occurred in my large batch loading. it might have happened when I still had the chain attached and was getting some failures to engage the drum. I then removed the chain and eliminated that issue but still might have had some low or no powder rounds. A friend suggested using a length of a 3/8" wooden dowel and just sand it down until it fits inside the case. I am gonna try that when the weather clears and warms up down here in Tx.

llangston1
Posts: 134
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2014 10:01 pm

Re: Homegrown powder checker

Postby llangston1 » Sat Feb 17, 2018 9:37 pm

Oh and for powder I was using Titegroup and loading 9mm when I had the squib/low loads.


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