Loadmaster press is better it seems

Questions and discussions and troubleshooting Lee Load Master presses

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Horseman
Posts: 419
Joined: Sun Jan 18, 2009 4:50 pm

Loadmaster press is better it seems

Postby Horseman » Fri Aug 17, 2018 9:51 pm

I haven't been around here much for a year or so mainly because I sold the last two LM's I had. Well, it would seem the LM is an "addiction" I can't seem to shake. Bought another one a couple months ago, new in box, for a very good price (main reason for purchase). I've owned several over the years, mostly used that needed a little to a lot of TLC from former owners. I've always been able to get them back to "proper" working order although the last two I had I enlisted the aid of Magic Mike for one of them as I just couldn't seem to get it "right". After completing each to where they would operate as intended with very few issues, if any, I always seem to sell them off. This last one I purchased, as I said NIB, doesn't seem to have any problems at all. That includes the priming system (at least to this point). When I first unboxed the press I did smooth the primer adjusting bolt and "smooth" the rocker arm but that's about it. When I first bolted it to the bench the ram wouldn't operate due to the carrier being adjusted to tight to the frame and the indexing rod "shoe" was to far out to index. Through experience with these presses that was easy to spot and "fix". After set up and adjusting everything, and after a couple hundred rounds this press has not had one problem, that includes both primer sizes. I know, a small sample, but encouraging none the less. So actually this "topic" is mainly a question, is this the new "normal" for the Load Master press or did I just get a Wednesday "special" this time around? From the looks of the activity around here it seems it may have become the norm. Or no ones using them anymore and I doubt that. I'd like to hear about other's experiences as of late. Breathe some life into this fine site that has been such a help to myself and others over the years. What say?

magic mike
Posts: 690
Joined: Tue Dec 06, 2011 10:33 am
Location: TX

Re: Loadmaster press is better it seems

Postby magic mike » Mon Aug 20, 2018 11:52 am

My guess is that you're probably right Horseman as concerns the new "normal". For what it's worth, I think that if Lee would harden the indexing rod so that it wouldn't wear as bad along its sides and come up with a more secure, or less fragile way of locking the carrier in position it would go a long way toward building a happier customer base. Just as a note, I have found that one can grind duplicate angles on the remaining three sides of the index rod tip and therefore gain the ability to adjust the indexing to a finer degree. One quarter turn at a time instead of one full turn. I still sell a bunch of Turret Stabilizer plates and Billet Turrets and the feedback I get from my customers is very positive in regard to those two items. I do think the latest design of the primer system is better and frankly I believe it's as good as it will ever be from Lee. Again, the key to making it work as reliably as possible is to have the press mounted as solidly as humanly possible and to make sure the primer pin is dead flush with the trough floor so the primers don't trip over it and flip.
Although past experience with the press is a huge advantage, getting a Wednesday "special" sure can't hurt anything. My press was definitely a Monday or Friday unit as it suffered from every LM problem known to man. The good news is that it only took me five years to get it working like it should have worked the day I got it! I'm proud to say that my reloading buddy and I used it the other day to prime 2,000 .223 cases for stock and it never missed a beat. Can't complain about that! YMMV

Happy loading All,
Mike

Horseman
Posts: 419
Joined: Sun Jan 18, 2009 4:50 pm

Re: Loadmaster press is better it seems

Postby Horseman » Wed Sep 19, 2018 12:10 pm

A bit late on a response Mike. By the way, thanks for yours. I really liked your stabilizer plates and if I decide to keep this one I'll contact you for some more of them. I noticed on your site you don't show the priming parts you used to offer, is this something you no longer do? Just curious. On the index rod I do the very thing you mention, I use a fine file and carefully break the edges (a little bit more) and find it also "smooths" the action of the press as well. I totally agree on the trough to pin adjustment being of extreme importance and think it was one of your better ideas on "fixing" priming problems. Great work. One other thing (I got this from Ranch Dog on his site) that seems to really help (eliminate) priming issues is to ream or uniform all primer pockets before running through the machine. According to him it has cured all his problems. I have always done this (uniforming) on my rifle brass but am now doing on all brass for all my presses. My LM is a dedicated machine for 9mm only and I've run into some really tight pockets with a couple different brands.

magic mike
Posts: 690
Joined: Tue Dec 06, 2011 10:33 am
Location: TX

Re: Loadmaster press is better it seems

Postby magic mike » Fri Sep 21, 2018 12:49 pm

I stopped doing the primer mods several months ago Horseman as I just don't have the time to devote to doing them since I brought my annealer to market. I did take the time to put together a guide detailing the entire mod which is available for purchase on my website to anyone who wants it. I do stock the sliders for the ARS system for those who had me do the mod to their press or for those who purchase the guide and want to do the conversion themselves.
I totally agree that prepping primer pockets could go a long way toward reducing the possibility of primer problems. In my view, anything one can do to smooth up the operation is a good thing. In other words, practicing your tap dancing moves while walking through a mine field probably ain't a good idea!
9mm brass consistency from one manufacturer to another seems to be all over the place. I ran some 9's the other day and actually had a few cases where the seated bullet almost fell out of the case after applying the taper crimp! I was able to pull the bullets out of the cases with my fingers and they showed no indication of having been crimped and measured 0.355" in diameter! VooDoo is at play here folks.

The beat goes on......
Mike


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