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I'm sure this topic has been worn out but I'm going to post it anyway! Am planning to get either a 550 or a 650 and want to get one that is easy to learn on and then will meet my needs down the road. I've been using a Rockchucker for 10 plus years and it's time to move on to a progressive for all the usual reasons. Will be loading 5.56, .380, 9mm, .38, 40, 45 ACP and 45 Colt. As far as how much shooting I will do--if I have rounds loaded, I'll be shooting. If I don't have them loaded then I'll stop and load a batch up. So I shoot as much as I can and would love to be able to knock out a few hundred rounds in a hour or so. Am thinking I will order the press with a set up for 45 ACP, which I shoot the most, get comfortable with that caliber and then get dies, tool heads etc., for other calibers. Any other advice regarding options and add ons for the press would be appreciated. Thanks very much!


Any sane person should be instinctively skeptical when all the smart people agree. Mark Steyn
 
Posts: 158 | Location: WNC | Registered: November 20, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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The 550 has a case feeder option now but last I checked many considered it problematic. I started with a 650 and am still using the same machine twenty three or more years later. My brother has the 550 and has no complaints.(without casefeeeder)

I load in batches and do several different calibers. Food for thought on your caliber conversions...
http://thegunwiki.com/apps/calconversion/

The 650 offers another station for a powder check die which for me is added insurance that I wont get an empty or double charge even though I check every loaded case visually. The powder buzzer for the powder measure isn't needed but I did go with the low primer alert and have been very satisfied with it. I use case lube and clean brass for smoothness of operation.
 
Posts: 841 | Location: hampton roads, va. | Registered: October 03, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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For learning Id recommend the 550. With the manual index capability its a much more forgiving press than the automatic progressive.

Ive loaded on a 550 for 8 years now, and can do both small batch and mass production without any of the add on devices like case feeders.




"The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits." Albert Einstein
 
Posts: 8050 | Location: Phoenix AZ | Registered: May 22, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I have a pair of 550B's that I load on for all my pistol/revolver needs. Like you, I started on a single stage press, and that kept me supplied for over 40 years. After using one of my son's 550B's, I replaced it with one of my own, then bought another so I could keep each permanently set up for Large and Small primers. It's worked out well for me and allows me to load four 50-round boxes an hour at a leisurely pace.

Dillon's customer service is 2nd to none in my opinion. A call to their people and you're talking to an expert reloader who knows the product and how it works. I've never had to pay for any replacement parts either.

Others here may recommend the 650 press, but for me, the 550B does it all. I understand that the "C" press has some upgrades and is a bit more expensive but the "B" has been just fine for my needs. BTW, I shoot every day, cast my own bullets, and my round counts for a year's shooting run up to 10,000 a year.

One indication of just how good Dillon's press is: try to buy one used...in my experience, they just don't come up for sale!

Best of luck and you won't be disappointed no matter which you choose. Rod


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Posts: 522 | Registered: April 04, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I purchased a 650XL a little over a year ago with 9mm and 233 setups....

The auto indexing is a huge help and very easy to set up. I would not hesitate in recommending this to an experienced reloader.

The extra die slot in the tool plate (5th die) available for the 650 is great. I use for a powder cop or a mandrel die.

Definite needs on ordering... auto case feeder, strong mount, roller handle, bullet tray extra primer pickup tubes, pistol carbide dies.

I'd start with your most shot caliber (sounds like 45 ACP and add the necessary caliber conversion for a second caliber. Learn this and then adding will be simple in the future.


Don't bother with carbide dies for rifle. Expensive and you'll be using lube anyhow. Pistol carbide dies are worth the dollars.

Set up and getting started took me about 2hrs total. Very straightforward and easy to understand manuals.


There are some great add-ons that you'll discover as you go forward. LED strip lighting - AWESOME!!!! Uniquetek Powder Baffle and Micrometer Charge Bar - Great for precision!!! Used Primer disposal.


Go for the 650XL and don't look back... You'll be glad you did.

Andrew


Duty is the sublimest word in the English Language - Gen Robert E Lee.
 
Posts: 417 | Registered: May 01, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I loaded on a Lee Classic Turret for about ten years. As I got a little older, I no longer wanted to pull that handle four times to make one round.

Went with a Dillon 650 with case loader, and all the bells and whistles, I could not be happier, it is a fantastic machine.


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Posts: 11283 | Location: MI | Registered: July 10, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Get the 650 with a casefeeder and never look back!!! These are awesome machines. Since you have been a handloader for some time now, you will make the transition over with no problem. You will NOT regret it!!
 
Posts: 4014 | Location: Az | Registered: May 27, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Geaux Tigers
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quote:
Originally posted by GT-40DOC:
Get the 650 with a casefeeder and never look back!!! These are awesome machines. Since you have been a handloader for some time now, you will make the transition over with no problem. You will NOT regret it!!


What he said I'll second!!!


Al______________Capone396



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Posts: 1223 | Location: Down South in Bayou Country | Registered: January 28, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I started with the 550 and within 12 months I sold it and went to the 650.

Main reasons -
1 - 5th station which allows me to use the powder cop to insure I have a correct charge
2 - case feeder designed for system from the factory
3 - auto index

But I am old and need these extra features...Mark
 
Posts: 2219 | Location: MS | Registered: December 16, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I started with and still use a 550. I have never used a 650 so I don’t have experience with the difference, but I have been very happy with my 550. I can reload up to 500 rounds in a single reloading doing everything manual.




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Posts: 6217 | Location: The Lone Star State | Registered: July 07, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Dean of Law
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I have a 550. Wish I got the 650.


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Posts: 6448 | Location: Georgia | Registered: December 02, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I loaded a little 45 ACP on a friends 550. I liked it well enough. However, when it came time to buy my own for 9mm, I went with a 650. I soon added the case feeder...

Best I could recommend is find someone with one or at least buy the instruction video from Dillon.

I’m actually looking at 550or maybe another 650 to use for smaller runs of 10mm and others and leave my current 650 set for 9mm.




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Posts: 6936 | Location: West | Registered: November 26, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Ok, I’m not a Dillon guy, so forgive this question if the answer is obvious...

The OP only listed straight walled pistol cartridges in his lineup. Why isn’t the Square Deal B ever recommended? Is this press the one that has no reason to exist in the minds of those that love the other Dillon products? Why would you go with a full size 650, when for the same money you could get a compact Square Deal B and three or four conversion kits?



[i]
 
Posts: 5453 | Location: Utah | Registered: December 18, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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^ pretty simple, the SD can’t load 5.56.


I owned several of all the Dillon models before I finall bought a 550. Really go it just to have at least one of everything.

With that list of calibers, it might be a good choice as it it the fastest press to convert priming systems.

If you have money and don’t mind spending it for things worth it, the 650 can run circles around it.
 
Posts: 444 | Location: DFW | Registered: May 03, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Having owned both, you couldn’t pay me to go back to a 550.


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Posts: 5048 | Location: MS | Registered: June 09, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Buy the one you'll wish you bought first, the 650. If you take your time it's plenty easy to set up and learn.
 
Posts: 1596 | Location: God Awful New York | Registered: July 01, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I've got a line on a nearly new Dillon 650 with a case feeder and bullet feeder, all set up for 9mm with one tool head. I can get out the door with it for $850. How much of a deal is that?

One thing I've always liked about the l-n-l was that primer on demand. I seem to recall somebody mentioning an aftermarket primer cut-off for the 650. Anybody recall who makes the primer cut-off?



[i]
 
Posts: 5453 | Location: Utah | Registered: December 18, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by sigcrazy7:
I've got a line on a nearly new Dillon 650 with a case feeder and bullet feeder, all set up for 9mm with one tool head. I can get out the door with it for $850. How much of a deal is that?

One thing I've always liked about the l-n-l was that primer on demand. I seem to recall somebody mentioning an aftermarket primer cut-off for the 650. Anybody recall who makes the primer cut-off?


That's a good deal on a used Dillon.

As far as a primer cut off... simplest way to stop the primer wheel..... Just remove the ramped cam actuator.... It's just a simple allen screw.


Andrew


Duty is the sublimest word in the English Language - Gen Robert E Lee.
 
Posts: 417 | Registered: May 01, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by sigcrazy7:
I've got a line on a nearly new Dillon 650 with a case feeder and bullet feeder, all set up for 9mm with one tool head. I can get out the door with it for $850. How much of a deal is that?

One thing I've always liked about the l-n-l was that primer on demand. I seem to recall somebody mentioning an aftermarket primer cut-off for the 650. Anybody recall who makes the primer cut-off?


most seem to buy one from a guy named shoshoez or something similar on ebay. he's from alaska and his shipping is notoriously slow... but the products are top shelf by all accounts.

If you have a line on a 650 with a case feeder and the bullet feeder for $850, buy it yesterday... that is about half the going rate for a used setup like that. The Bullet feeder and case feeder will set you back that much new.


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Posts: 5048 | Location: MS | Registered: June 09, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by tha1000:
quote:
Originally posted by sigcrazy7:
I've got a line on a nearly new Dillon 650 with a case feeder and bullet feeder, all set up for 9mm with one tool head. I can get out the door with it for $850. How much of a deal is that?

One thing I've always liked about the l-n-l was that primer on demand. I seem to recall somebody mentioning an aftermarket primer cut-off for the 650. Anybody recall who makes the primer cut-off?


most seem to buy one from a guy named shoshoez or something similar on ebay. he's from alaska and his shipping is notoriously slow... but the products are top shelf by all accounts.

If you have a line on a 650 with a case feeder and the bullet feeder for $850, buy it yesterday... that is about half the going rate for a used setup like that. The Bullet feeder and case feeder will set you back that much new.


That's what I was thinking. My brother bought it from a guy he works with, but is unsure if he ever wants to get into loading. He hasn't loaded a single cartridge since we were teenagers back in 1985. He keeps suggesting I could get it from him for what he paid, and I'm pretty sure it was $850. Might have been $650, can't remember.

He lives 1800 miles away, and I'm going for a visit next week. I'll take a look. He did send me some pics when he bought it last year, and it looked brand new. I think the former owner only loaded a hundred rounds or so, and IIRC it still has the original boxes.



[i]
 
Posts: 5453 | Location: Utah | Registered: December 18, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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