Dillon press in the new year....which one?

Dillon press in the new year....which one?

This is a discussion on Dillon press in the new year....which one? within the Reloading forums, part of the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics category; I am considering a progressive press for .40 S&W and have been thinking about the Dillon line. I already have a RCBS single stage and ...

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Thread: Dillon press in the new year....which one?

  1. #1
    Member Array DuknBucks's Avatar
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    Question Dillon press in the new year....which one?

    I am considering a progressive press for .40 S&W and have been thinking about the Dillon line. I already have a RCBS single stage and have been reloading large rifle for years. Now that I started shooting IDPA I have been burning through the factory HG ammo and have been thinking about a progressive.

    I can afford a larger press such as the 550 or 650, but I am a practical guy and not sure if they would be used at full potential??

    The Square Deal looks like a cool little press. I was thinking maybe just set it up for .40 and leave it dedicated for that????


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    Distinguished Member Array brocktice's Avatar
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    I was looking at the higher end Dillon presses, but where does one buy them?

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    Member Array Aquaman's Avatar
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    I own the xl650 and love it, the 550 does not automatically index the cases, you have to manually index them around after each pull of the handle, the square b automatically indexs but i believe it only uses dies that are exclusive to that machine, the others you can use dies from other manufacturers like Lee or RCBS, but i like the way dilons dies can easily be remove to clean and reinstalled without having to readjust them.

    As far as finding them you can order direct from factory or google search for other suppliers.

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    If you're only going to load a single pistol caliber, the Square Deal B is probably close to optimum from a cost basis. But you'll be locked into Dillon dies and give up caliber-changing flexibility. I know guys who have multiple SDBs set up for their competition guns in more than one caliber, because they shoot thousands and thousands of each caliber annually.

    If you want the flexibility of loading rifle as well as pistol calibers, skip the SDB. I never thought I'd really need a progressive for rifle calibers until I got a Garand... once I settled on a good load, the case prep became the long pole in the tent, not the loading. And this year, if bullets become available, I'll start loading 5.56 as well. The big differences between the Dillon 550 and 650 is that the 650 auto-indexes (advances the shell plate with each stroke of the lever) and it has 5 stations vs. 4 on the 550. This may be important if you use a "powder cop" (a 'die' that checks for too little or too much powder) and a separate crimping die. I employ both of these for loading .45 so having 5 stations available became a big plus after the fact.

    A couple of years ago I looked closely at the Dillon 550, and ultimately went with the Hornady LNL AP for about the same price. It has features like the Dillon 650 (5 stations and auto-indexing) and a comparable warranty but it's sale price at Midway was closer to the Dillon 550. My shooting partner has the 550 and we've compared notes; we each had some initial frustrations with our respective presses but those have been sorted out. Dillon has a better case mouth expanding feature than Hornady (allowing you to drop powder at the same station where the case mouth is flared), but I found an aftermarket solution better than Hornady's. I think there are far more Dillon presses in service than Hornady progressives, so the chorus of Dillon supporters will be louder. But I have no regrets about my press.

    BT, there are retailers who sell the Dillon line, but I'd say most of their sales are direct. The Dillon guys will guide you over the phone in selecting what you need, if you can't get your answers here.
    Smitty
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    Member Array Mjr_Fail's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by brocktice View Post
    I was looking at the higher end Dillon presses, but where does one buy them?
    Dillon Precision Reloading on BrianEnos.com
    "Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety." --Benjamin Franklin

    "Ignorance can be treated with education, sadly there is no cure for stupidity."

  6. #6
    Member Array DuknBucks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gasmitty View Post
    If you're only going to load a single pistol caliber, the Square Deal B is probably close to optimum from a cost basis. But you'll be locked into Dillon dies and give up caliber-changing flexibility. I know guys who have multiple SDBs set up for their competition guns in more than one caliber, because they shoot thousands and thousands of each caliber annually.

    If you want the flexibility of loading rifle as well as pistol calibers, skip the SDB. I never thought I'd really need a progressive for rifle calibers until I got a Garand... once I settled on a good load, the case prep became the long pole in the tent, not the loading. And this year, if bullets become available, I'll start loading 5.56 as well. The big differences between the Dillon 550 and 650 is that the 650 auto-indexes (advances the shell plate with each stroke of the lever) and it has 5 stations vs. 4 on the 550. This may be important if you use a "powder cop" (a 'die' that checks for too little or too much powder) and a separate crimping die. I employ both of these for loading .45 so having 5 stations available became a big plus after the fact.

    A couple of years ago I looked closely at the Dillon 550, and ultimately went with the Hornady LNL AP for about the same price. It has features like the Dillon 650 (5 stations and auto-indexing) and a comparable warranty but it's sale price at Midway was closer to the Dillon 550. My shooting partner has the 550 and we've compared notes; we each had some initial frustrations with our respective presses but those have been sorted out. Dillon has a better case mouth expanding feature than Hornady (allowing you to drop powder at the same station where the case mouth is flared), but I found an aftermarket solution better than Hornady's. I think there are far more Dillon presses in service than Hornady progressives, so the chorus of Dillon supporters will be louder. But I have no regrets about my press.

    BT, there are retailers who sell the Dillon line, but I'd say most of their sales are direct. The Dillon guys will guide you over the phone in selecting what you need, if you can't get your answers here.
    thanks for the good post....I appreciate the input. I know the SQD B will do exactly what I need with some limitations.....my buddy has the 650 in .45 so that would cover both of my high consumption needs. As for rifle I will continue to use the Rock Chucker with great results. I would probably go with the 650 but I really don't need another hobby.

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    Member Array DuknBucks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mjr_Fail View Post
    this is a great resource...my buddy used before he decided on the 650...

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    VIP Member Array shadowwalker's Avatar
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    I had the Square D and loved and Dillon has a great web site the are in Prescott AZ

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    Quote Originally Posted by shadowwalker View Post
    I had the Square D and loved and Dillon has a great web site the are in Prescott AZ
    Actually, they're in Scottsdale. I drop into their store every now and then if I'm in the neighborhood. The store isn't particularly impressive, however on one visit last summer one of their Blue Press models was there behind the counter - I think she's a regular employee.
    Smitty
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    Member Array jack76590's Avatar
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    Dillon has some DVDs for sale on how to set up and operate their presses. You might consider buying the DVD before you decide on a press. I have three dillons. Two 550s and a 450 I upgraded with an automatic primer feed. I like them, but can't say they are the best. But they are good and when I got additional presses I stuck with what I knew. Good luck.
    flintlock62 likes this.

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    Distinguished Member Array dangerranger's Avatar
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    I have used the Square Deal B, for one cal loading of lots of ammo its hard to beat! I owned a 650RL also. they were both great machines that once adjusted turned out tons of ammo without any fuss! I have owned three other makers progressives and would not suggest any of them . They all had to be constantly adjusted, monitored, and dinked with to keep them running. DR

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    Senior Member Array flintlock62's Avatar
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    I suggest the same thing. The selection of the press may depend on how much you reload. I have the RL 550B, and love it.

    Quote Originally Posted by jack76590 View Post
    Dillon has some DVDs for sale on how to set up and operate their presses. You might consider buying the DVD before you decide on a press. I have three dillons. Two 550s and a 450 I upgraded with an automatic primer feed. I like them, but can't say they are the best. But they are good and when I got additional presses I stuck with what I knew. Good luck.
    marcclarke likes this.

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    VIP Member Array PAcanis's Avatar
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    I love my 550.
    And I think someone here had one for sale a week or two ago. Pretty good deal if I remember.

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    Distinguished Member Array brocktice's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mjr_Fail View Post
    Wow that is what I need! I got so confused trying to figure out all of the parts/accessories I needed to reload.

  15. #15
    Member Array Tzed250's Avatar
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    I have the Hornady AP set up for .40. Hornady does have a powder through expander for loading .40S&W and on my press it works great. Right now my press is: station 1 size/decap, station 2 empty, station 3 expand/powder drop, station 4 bullet feeder, station 5 seat/crimp.

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