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Hornady Powder Scale?

Uncle FesterUncle Fester Senior MemberPosts: 1,451 Senior Member
I didn’t really like the electronic scale that came with my reloading kit.  As a result, I bought a M500 balance scale which is accurate enough for me (but slow).

Problem: zero scale with empty pan, drop charge, confirm weight, drop charge into case through funnel.  

In that time, my scale is off zero by 2 tenths.  

Hornady Tech: that is normal.  You need to zero your scale after every charge.

Is he right?

Replies

  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 25,154 Senior Member
    That’s stupid. 
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • ilove22silove22s Senior Member Posts: 1,452 Senior Member
    edited October 2020 #3
    I didn’t really like the electronic scale that came with my reloading kit.  As a result, I bought a M500 balance scale which is accurate enough for me (but slow).

    Problem: zero scale with empty pan, drop charge, confirm weight, drop charge into case through funnel.  

    In that time, my scale is off zero by 2 tenths.  

    Hornady Tech: that is normal.  You need to zero your scale after every charge.

    Is he right?
    To me something is fishy...

    I have a RCBS 10-10 and its repeatable for what it does and is.

    what you may want to do is to toss in a charge, weigh it, remove it from the pan, and put the charge back into the pan.  Then re-read the weight.  maybe do this several times.   If you are weighing the same charge, it should be the same.

    you could look at the beams axle? and see if there is any burrs/debris, also check that the beam is free to move.

    i would also make sure you are reading it from the same angle everytime too.  The indicator mark on the beam looks much narrower than the notch in the frame on Midways website of that product.

    and for S&G you may want to maybe, once you zero it, place 1 grain at a time onto the pan and see how many grains it takes to move the needle that 0.2....



    have fun


    The ears never lie.

    - Don Burt
  • SpkSpk Senior Member Posts: 4,394 Senior Member
    I agree with ilove22s. Check the beam at the balance point and make sure it's clean and free of any grease, debris, dust and that it's allowed to move freely. Also, be sure you're not being thrown off by an AC draft. Beam scales are sensitive and can be moved around by the littlest things but the whole rezeroing after every charge sounds wrong to me.

    Jmho
    Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience -- Mark Twain
    How easy it is to make people believe a lie, and [how] hard it is to undo that work again! -- Mark Twain

  • LinefinderLinefinder Moderator Posts: 7,410 Senior Member
    Don't know what you didn't like about your original electronic scale, but a Dillon D-Terminator is both accurate and affordable. If I had to go back to using a balance-beam scale, I'd quit handloading entirely.

    Mike
    "Walking away seems to be a lost art form."
    N454casull
  • ilove22silove22s Senior Member Posts: 1,452 Senior Member
    edited October 2020 #6
    also, fwiw,

    you may want to look at teh various loads you are using.  depending on the load, +/- 0.02 gr, may not make a difference.

    but it will also depend on your endgame.

    side note....

     > not sure what your endgame is and how you do things.  but.....

     > my way to reload is for economy.  So more bang for the buck  meaning not so uber fast loads...mostly for killing paper.

     > what i do is to use the averages.  I also believe in what Dillon states - consistency.  

     > so what i do is reload in batches using trays.  50/100 round usually.

     > i set my dropper for whatever load im shooting for.  I will drop a few , then i will drop 10 charges into the pan if i can hold that much.  Then i will weight and divide by 10 to get an "average".   Most of the times, the "average" is on the low side of my target.  If its not to far off, i may leave it and note it in my reloading log.  If i want to get closer, i may adjust the thrower to toss more.  I will throw a few and then do it the 10 again.  I may do this until im happy with the "average".  Its not a hard set rule on what i do either.  Again, shooting at paper.  

     > i also drop 1 and measure to see if im +/-.   Its just for my curiosity.  Then most of the times its on the + side when i make that adjustment.  


    good luck
    The ears never lie.

    - Don Burt
  • Uncle FesterUncle Fester Senior Member Posts: 1,451 Senior Member
    edited October 2020 #7
    ilove22s said:
    I didn’t really like the electronic scale that came with my reloading kit.  As a result, I bought a M500 balance scale which is accurate enough for me (but slow).

    Problem: zero scale with empty pan, drop charge, confirm weight, drop charge into case through funnel.  

    In that time, my scale is off zero by 2 tenths.  

    Hornady Tech: that is normal.  You need to zero your scale after every charge.

    Is he right?
    To me something is fishy...

    I have a RCBS 10-10 and its repeatable for what it does and is.

    what you may want to do is to toss in a charge, weigh it, remove it from the pan, and put the charge back into the pan.  Then re-read the weight.  maybe do this several times.   If you are weighing the same charge, it should be the same.

    you could look at the beams axle? and see if there is any burrs/debris, also check that the beam is free to move.

    i would also make sure you are reading it from the same angle everytime too.  The indicator mark on the beam looks much narrower than the notch in the frame on Midways website of that product.

    and for S&G you may want to maybe, once you zero it, place 1 grain at a time onto the pan and see how many grains it takes to move the needle that 0.2....



    have fun


    I am sorry about the confusion.  I was complaining about the Hornady electronic scale.  I don’t think it should lose zero from shot to shot.   He argued that one must zero an electronic scale after every shot. I am not doing precision reloading (mostly 300 BO and 9mm), but I don’t want to build in inconsistency in my loads.  Mostly, I am checking to stay under max loads.

    I could see a scale wandering a little over time, but every single shot?

    The RCBS M500 beam scale is very consistent.  My main issue with it is takes forever to check the balance.  I plan to use it more when I start loading for my 6.5CM rifle.
  • Six-GunSix-Gun Senior Member Posts: 8,155 Senior Member
    edited October 2020 #8
    Also: check to see if any stay powder granules have made their way into the pan support holes. That will generate inconsistency.  You definitely shouldn’t have to re-zero from charge to charge.
    Accuracy: because white space between bullet holes drives me insane.
  • gunner81gunner81 Member Posts: 507 Senior Member
    I've had my Hornaday electronic scale do that and when it does I put new batteries in it Problem Solved
  • ilove22silove22s Senior Member Posts: 1,452 Senior Member
    ilove22s said:
    I didn’t really like the electronic scale that came with my reloading kit.  As a result, I bought a M500 balance scale which is accurate enough for me (but slow).

    Problem: zero scale with empty pan, drop charge, confirm weight, drop charge into case through funnel.  

    In that time, my scale is off zero by 2 tenths.  

    Hornady Tech: that is normal.  You need to zero your scale after every charge.

    Is he right?
    To me something is fishy...

    I have a RCBS 10-10 and its repeatable for what it does and is.

    what you may want to do is to toss in a charge, weigh it, remove it from the pan, and put the charge back into the pan.  Then re-read the weight.  maybe do this several times.   If you are weighing the same charge, it should be the same.

    you could look at the beams axle? and see if there is any burrs/debris, also check that the beam is free to move.

    i would also make sure you are reading it from the same angle everytime too.  The indicator mark on the beam looks much narrower than the notch in the frame on Midways website of that product.

    and for S&G you may want to maybe, once you zero it, place 1 grain at a time onto the pan and see how many grains it takes to move the needle that 0.2....



    have fun


    I am sorry about the confusion.  I was complaining about the Hornady electronic scale.  I don’t think it should lose zero from shot to shot.   He argued that one must zero an electronic scale after every shot. I am not doing precision reloading (mostly 300 BO and 9mm), but I don’t want to build in inconsistency in my loads.  Mostly, I am checking to stay under max loads.

    I could see a scale wandering a little over time, but every single shot?

    The RCBS M500 beam scale is very consistent.  My main issue with it is takes forever to check the balance.  I plan to use it more when I start loading for my 6.5CM rifle.
    no confusion...

    i was just pointing out how "I" use my scale.

    good luck
    The ears never lie.

    - Don Burt
  • pjames777pjames777 Senior Member Posts: 1,421 Senior Member
    Used my Rockchucker 1500 for the first time this week.  Very consistent with the charge but for reloading handgun bullets much slower then using my beam scale and powder drop.  However, I think I'm pleasantly satisfied that each and every charge is spot on.   

    I can see that when I start reloading rifle rounds that having a consistent drop will more then compensate for the additional time spent.  The 1500 is easy to use, store charges in memory and allows changes and even trickle drops.

    Ran 200 9mm yesterday and am priming 250 40 SW at the dinner table tonight.  Have probable 1100 45 ACP that I need to run thru the process too, clean, deprime, prime, and reload.  Got the scale on sale about 10 months ago for $269
  • JayJay Senior Member Posts: 3,960 Senior Member
    I'm not familiar with the Hornady digital scale, as I've only used RCBS scales. Both of my RCBS scales need some time to "warm up" before I start using them. Try turning the scale on and leaving it on for at least 30 minutes before calibrating and zeroing it and see if it still does that.
  • PegasusPegasus Senior Member Posts: 2,789 Senior Member
    There are two main types of electronic scales:  strain guage and magnetic force restauration.   The strain types are cheaper and much more common; that's what the Hornady and all the other handloading brand name scales are.  This type of scale measures the force (strain) being exerted on it by object on the platen.  While some can be quite good, they all suffer from drift.  It's the nature of that beast.

    The other type of scale is much more sophisticated (meaning more $$$) and does not suffer from drift.  This magnetic force restauration is simply that the scale produces a magnetic field and the measures how much power it has to put out to keep the platen in a certain spot.  By measuring the power, it knows how much the platen and whatever is on it weighs.  This type of scale is more of a laboratory scale and they don't drift.

    I have a ChargeMaster 1500 (strain guage) and an A&D FX-120i (MFR).  The CM as an entire unit was $300.  The A&D, just the scale (or balance) was double that and that was on sale.  When the A&D is powered on, you can feel the power coursing through it by just touching the top of it.

    I run marathon powder loading sessions on my A&D with the Autotrickler and Autothrow devices and will consistently produce ammo with the powder charge measured to the kernel of powder.  I never have to reset or calibrate or reset 0.

    Now all scales are subject to interference, especially from air currents.  I set up baffles around my area when I load.  Also, make sure to turn off all fluorescent lights if they are on the same circuit as the scale.

    I used to worry about phones, WiFi and so on, but since the Autotrickler is controlled via Bluetooth, that worry is ancient history.

    Resetting to 0 frequently is definitely a feature of a strain guage.  

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