One way to set up a P1k

For discussion, question and answers regarding Pro 1000 presses

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UnderDawgAl
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One way to set up a P1k

Postby UnderDawgAl » Fri Feb 15, 2008 10:30 pm

From many accounts, the main drawbacks of the Pro-1000 are the priming system and the lack of space for a LEE Factory Crimp Die. Thanks to darwin-t for posting a solution for this on another forum (either THR or TFL, I can't recall), although its use cancels out the all-at-one-sitting aspect of a progressive press.

I'm using it with great satisfaction, as follows:
--Run all fired brass through the resize/decapping die mounted on my old aluminum-base LEE Turret Press. At the same time, use the Safety Prime System to reprime.
--On the P1K, remove the priming system completely. Install expander die (with attached Auto-Disk) in stage one, seating die in stage two, and LEE FCD in stage three.
--Run all primed brass through the P1K, pumping out a complete round with each pull of the handle.

TIP--Use a little dentist's mirror (available at Wal-mart in the toothbrush section) to inspect each round in stage two for powder, just prior to setting a bullet in the case mouth.

While this setup slows down the output that a progressive press is supposed to provide, I find it advantageous for a couple of reasons.
(1) I thoroughly enjoy the process, so I like the additional steps because I don't want to finish it too quickly. :D
(2) It gives me a chance to inspect every case for cracks, dents, correct primer-seating depth, etc., prior to starting the progressive stages.
(3) I have more time to reload than I have time to shoot. See (1) above.
(4) It allows me to take advantage of two pieces of equipment. Although I currently only load for .38 Spl, I plan to add other handgun rounds. My plan is to just put the resizing dies in one turret for the old turret press and then swap shell plates and turrets (with the remaining 3 dies) for the P1K.

UnderDawgAl

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darwin
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Postby darwin » Sun Feb 17, 2008 6:05 pm

The top of the press that holds the turret is square, IIRC. The corner in the left front doesn't have a vertical strut attached there. I took the thing to my grinder and ground away on that to round it off. It made seeing what was going on a lot easier.

I resized in my turret press with the indexing rod removed and primed while watching TV with the hand primer (the safety prime hadn't been marketed yet)

You bring up a drawback with progressive presses. There is virtually no chance to check for cracked necks, or check or clean primer pockets. I, like most progressive press owners take that tradeoff for speed and fewer motions per round.

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darwin
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Postby darwin » Mon Feb 18, 2008 10:29 am

Here's a photo of my "mod"

Image

I did it so I could see the case better. I THINK the bullet seating was done there and I couldn't see the powder well before I did this.

wrenchbender
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Postby wrenchbender » Fri Mar 07, 2008 12:38 am

OK, so I am not crazy.

Lately have been thinking of setting up a P1K to "finish" my .223's (and 9mm and 38SPL and 44mag etc etc) and was wondering how well it would work...

Been reloading for a looooong time with a Challenger (?!)-that I just recently replaced with a Classic Cast-and the original 3-hole non-auto-index turret.

Image

Have always done all the case prep steps single-stage, primed by hand, and used the turret press for final assembly.

Now for the obligatory stoopid questions...

Can I use all my existing Lee dies (expander/powder charge, seater, and factory crimp) that are currently screwed into their own dedicated 3hole turret inserts in this "stripped down" P1K?

Would it be cheaper to purchase a bare P1K and add only the parts I need for this type of setup?

I guess I'm not sure what comes with the bare press, and what I would need to add...

Boy, you really can find ANYTHING on the internet!!

WB

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darwin
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Postby darwin » Fri Mar 07, 2008 7:58 am

There is a good photo of a P1ooo turret right above your most recent message. Di they look the same?
i'm guessing they won't work. I think the P1000 turret is stationary.

wrenchbender
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Postby wrenchbender » Fri Mar 07, 2008 9:07 am

darwin wrote:There is a good photo of a P1ooo turret right above your most recent message. Di they look the same?
i'm guessing they won't work. I think the P1000 turret is stationary.


Yes, they look the same except for the little hole in the one in the picture.

Reasonably certain that the last 3-hole turret I ordered was listed as being for a P1000. You turn it about 1/6 of a turn to pop it out the top. It indexes with a spring loaded ball.

Am thinking my top plate looks just like yours (without the corner ground off).

WB

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Postby wcbuyer » Sat Mar 08, 2008 12:41 am

The 3 hole turret for the 3 Hole Turret Press and the 3 hole turret which fits the P1000 are one in the same. Lee #90497 fits either.

UnderDawgAl
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Postby UnderDawgAl » Sun Mar 09, 2008 10:41 am

wrenchbender,

If I understand you correctly, you will use the P1K to do the final three stages (expand/add powder, seat bullet, crimp bullet), right?

If so, then I think you'll find it much preferable to your current loading situation (case prep and reprime single-stage, then everything else on the turret press). Why? Because you'll be able to fly through the rest of the process after you've resized and reprimed.

The issue you'll have to consider is whether you want to justify the expense of the various shell plates you'll need for the various calibers. The other good folks here can probably add more insight into that--I only use it for 38 Spl., so I don't know if any one particular shell plate is good for a range of calibers. Wait a minute...here's the link to P1K instructions---http://www.leeprecision.com/cgi-data/instruct/TR2441.pdf. For the calibers you mentioned, you would need 4 different shell plates, according to the last page of the instructions. A quick call to Lee would help you immensely.

Again, I love using my P1K as described above. I like to do the case prep, resizing, and repriming beforehand so that I can inspect every case; I really like being able to progressively do the rest of the process, at an EASY, methodical pace of 200 per hour.

Hope this helps.
UnderDawgAl

UnderDawgAl
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Postby UnderDawgAl » Sun Mar 09, 2008 10:46 am

Thanks for the photo, darwin. I will consider that, if I get a grinder (or get access to one). Right now, I've gotten into such a smooth rhythm using the dental mirror to inspect cases for powder at the back right corner (stage two) that I find it convenient.

Jeff
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Postby Jeff » Tue Mar 11, 2008 12:37 am

Obligatory first post so I can post a pic of my Pro1000 setup and explantion about not using a FCD.

Jeff

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Postby Jeff » Tue Mar 11, 2008 12:37 am

I've been using a Pro1000 for over twenty years with very few, infrequent hiccups. I've also gone that entire time without needing a FCD, although all I load on the Pro1000 is small caliber handgun (38 Special, 9mm, .380 ACP).

Suppose if I was hellbent on using a FCD on every round I loaded, I'd consider the Classic Turret with its four-holer. But from Day One to the present, the three-banger set-up has worked absolutely fine for me.

Image

I load large caliber handgun and all large caliber long gun on the single stage. It's been years since I've loaded .223 and the Russian .308--but I'm starting to get back into them. For now, I'm loading them on the Lee single stage, but when I get a load down that I really like, I'll probably unbox the 550B and use it for those two calibers.

I thought about doing the decapping on a different press, then reconfiguring the three hole turret for a FCDE--but again, in over twenty years of loading with this Pro1000 and using Lee dies, I've simply never had the need to use the FCD.

Jeff

wrenchbender
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Postby wrenchbender » Tue Mar 11, 2008 8:39 pm

UnderDawgAl wrote:wrenchbender,

If I understand you correctly, you will use the P1K to do the final three stages (expand/add powder, seat bullet, crimp bullet), right?

If so, then I think you'll find it much preferable to your current loading situation (case prep and reprime single-stage, then everything else on the turret press). Why? Because you'll be able to fly through the rest of the process after you've resized and reprimed.

The issue you'll have to consider is whether you want to justify the expense of the various shell plates you'll need for the various calibers. The other good folks here can probably add more insight into that--I only use it for 38 Spl., so I don't know if any one particular shell plate is good for a range of calibers. Wait a minute...here's the link to P1K instructions---http://www.leeprecision.com/cgi-data/instruct/TR2441.pdf. For the calibers you mentioned, you would need 4 different shell plates, according to the last page of the instructions. A quick call to Lee would help you immensely.

Again, I love using my P1K as described above. I like to do the case prep, resizing, and repriming beforehand so that I can inspect every case; I really like being able to progressively do the rest of the process, at an EASY, methodical pace of 200 per hour.

Hope this helps.
UnderDawgAl


I was pretty sure that this was how you were using the press-which really surprised me-as I was really just bopping around on the internet looking for generic information on whether or not it would be possible/practical to use a P1000 this way.

I use (and re-use and re-use) "old" brass, and am just not comfortable without inspecting it thoroughly. Hand priming for me is the last inspection step, I really don't know another way to check for loose primer pockets.

Have thought about going progressive for many many years, but loading in quite a few different calibers makes getting setup much more expensive than just buying a press.

As you have indicated, I was thinking that the only other investment I would have using this/your method would be shell plates. My understanding is that the P1000 is too short for anything much longer than .223, but would be fine for .223 and all my pistol cartridges.

Thank you very much for the information, I've got to head down to the basement and use my turret to finish up some .223 blasting ammo...

ForneyRider
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Postby ForneyRider » Mon Mar 24, 2008 1:11 pm

I decap 45ACP on the Breech Lock press with universal decapper.

Clean the brass in tumbler, debur, chamfer, etc. Lyman tumbler and Lee brass prep tools.

I hand prime with Lee.

I then run the capped brass through the Pro 1000. Just push up the decap pin so it doesn't affect the primer.

I then run the loaded rounds through the FCD on the Breech Lock.

Too much maintenance and downtime to prime on Pro 1000 for me.

I do powder check (W231) when the case comes around to bullet seater die.

I can go pretty fast this way. Not so much the speed that bothers me but the downtime.

2 additional stations would be nice. One for a separate decapping step, and one for a powder measure check using some of the dies on the market. Dillon and Hornady, I think, makes them.

I'm going to try and wax the primer feed to see if that helps. It is a smoother if the press is nice and clean.


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