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Dillon 550B or 650

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by capvan, Apr 27, 2009.

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  1. capvan

    capvan Active Member

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    Trying to decide which Dillon machine to get. I know I want a Dillon, so that decision has been made. The big thing about the 650, to me, is the powder check system which is not available on the 550B. I've owned a 550B in the past and liked it, but am wondering if I want to kick it up a notch.

    Any advice greatly appreciated...

    Bruce
    kb1iix@arrl.net
     
  2. TOOLMAKER 251

    TOOLMAKER 251 Active Member

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    The 650 is auto index, the 550 is manual index.
     
  3. ccw1911

    ccw1911 Member

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    Go with the 550, it's a much better machine to start out with, you can load a lot of calibers with it easily and with a lot less problems. I don't know any reason you couldn't put the powder check system on the 550 although I've never used one myself even on my 1050. I've owned them all from the very first cast iron Dillons and wasn't impressed with the 650, I use the 550, 1050, and xl900. The square deal is a good little loader for the money but is limited to pistol calibers and is not nearly as well built as the 550, it is a little faster thou.
     
  4. capvan

    capvan Active Member

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    I totally am aware of the specifications of both machines.

    Dillon simply says you can't put the powder check system on the 550. Since they make the machines, I tend to believe them.

    Anyone else? Anyone have a machine for sale?
     
  5. ccw1911

    ccw1911 Member

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    Well goooood for you then. I stand corrected I was thinking of the device that goes into the powder measure that lets you know when your getting low on powder. You are wanting the device that checks the case to see if it has powder in it. The 550 doesn't have the extra hole to mount it so you are correct. I just mount a light so I can see if my cases have powder in them, works for me. I still would skip the 650 and go to the 1050 if you can afford it. Thank me later.
     
  6. capvan

    capvan Active Member

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    The 1050 does NOT come with the same warranty as the other machines. That was made clear by Dillon. Since it's a "commercial grade" machine, they don't treat it the same. More than I want to spend, in any case.

    Bruce
     
  7. plinker61

    plinker61 TS Member

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    capvan,been running my 550for over 100k pistol rounds so far,as far as a powder check i made a small bracket with a mirror attached to press with velcro and works pretty good you do need good light though(i sit on a chair to reload,and my machine is on strong mount with roller handel)and smallest pistol round i load is 9mm. all my long guns i do on a rcbs rock chucker II,better control over finished round,and eayser pull on handel,youll find out what i mean when you load the big pistol rounds(mostly due to resize),mark
     
  8. Shooting Coach

    Shooting Coach Well-Known Member

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    The 650 is a much better machine than the 550. The powder check is a good thing to have when loading dense powders such as Titegroup.

    As far as the 1050, I have ordered a few parts for mine. My machine is not used to commercially load ammo. As long as your company name is not "Shooting Coaches' Custom Ammo", or something, they will take care of you.

    I ordered a switch for the case feeder and was not charged for it. Talk to Tech Support about it.

    Other than pure speed, the 650 is a great machine IF it has the electric case feeder. Also, conversion kits are $$$$$$ for the 1050.
     
  9. Lead Man

    Lead Man TS Member

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    Shot tactical for a long time and used a 550 for 15 yrs, a great machine that has loaded many thousands of rounds. I load .32 to 45 as well as .223 and have no problems at all. I have never had a squibb load yet.
     
  10. jim brown

    jim brown Well-Known Member

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    550 is much more versatile if you want to load lots of calibers including rifle stuff. The 650 is better suited for loading large quantities of ammo for one or two calibers usually handgun stuff. If you are a handgun buff and go through lots of ammo buy the 650. If you are a shooter with lots of guns in many calibers in your safe buy the 550. I have two 550’s that I use quite often.

    jim brown
     
  11. ccw1911

    ccw1911 Member

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    Go to the brian enos forums and do some searching on the 650, guys on there are uspsa and action pistol shooters like I used to be and who go thru many thousands of rounds month after month, you will get some dependable info there concerning the 650.

    Edited to ad to be sure and search about the powder check system, I think there has been some problems with them setting the parameters so you don't get false readings. but I could be wrong..
     
  12. Shooting Coach

    Shooting Coach Well-Known Member

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    The powder check is a good add on, but I still look in the case for the level of powder. If you do not sort by headstamp, you may get beeps with some brass.

    I am so obsessive I sort even my 38 practice fodder. The powder check works as intended in this case.

    loading a little in a lot of calibers? The 550 may be for you. Loading mass quantities in a few calibers? the 650 is your best bet.

    Loading truckloads of one or two calibers? The 1050 is the Gold Standard for pure speed with quality.

    I am trying to whittle down to just a few calibers. Not an easy task. :^)
     
  13. johnjohn91387

    johnjohn91387 TS Member

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    Started with 2 Square Deal B, one in each primer size, strictly for handgun cartridges, of course. (9mm; .38; .357; .40; 10mm; and .45ACP; - 10mm and .45ACP use large pistol primers)

    Sold those and bought a 550; again, for handgun calibers.

    Sold that and bought a 650 with complete toolhead setups for same 6 handgun calibers.

    haven't looked back yet. Best Investment I ever made in handgun press. of course, I thought that when I got the two SDB models, then when I got the 550, and the same that I now have the 650.

    If I had to do it all over again, I'd buy TWO of the 650 models, and never change primer feeds again.

    Like most pistol shooters, I've lost count of how many <i>tens of thousands</i> of rounds I have loaded and shot.

    Do yourself a favor, get the 650. You will not regret it. The way Dillon raises their prices, you can sell it in 5 years for the same that you paid for it.
     
  14. claybrdr

    claybrdr Well-Known Member

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    I can't imagine anyone thinking the 550 is "better" than the 650. Amazing what you read on the internet.
     
  15. capvan

    capvan Active Member

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    Looks like the 650 is going to be it. Any further thoughts from anyone?

    Bruce
     
  16. ccw1911

    ccw1911 Member

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    It's a matter of perspective. If you have helped a lot of people set up their loaders over a long period of time and are part of groups of shooters that use a lot of dillons you learn things that others whose experience is more limited do not.

    As an example Primer system problems with some 650's are well known to those with experience, the first time and only time I ever had a primer go off during the loading process was with a 650 and I know of others the same thing happened to. I'm not basing my opinion on a one time use and have owned more than one of them. Based on paper specifications the 650 is a better machine, real life experience has been different for me. Dillon is good about improving as they go along and it is possible they have all the 650 problems behind them, I gave one web site as a resource and there are others, do your research and make your choice.

    I still think a 550 will fill the needs of most reloaders and if you have need for high volume reloading the 1050 is the very best, it may not have the lifetime warranty because it is a comercial graded machine but it also won't need it. One poster on here bragged about getting free parts for his because many of the small parts are interchangeable with the other dillon products. I can't even guess how many rounds I've ran thru one and many of the small commercial reloaders use them around the clock.

    I agree you can read anything on the net, some will tell you a lee is great, you have to know your sources.
     
  17. Zuzax

    Zuzax Member

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    I had a 550 and got a 650, no comparison. Sold the 550 and got another 650. Get the 650!
     
  18. skip

    skip Member

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    650!
     
  19. dverna

    dverna Active Member

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    Actually the powder check is less necessary on the 650 because of the auto index. You really have to try to double charge a round when you have auto indexing.

    I have four Dillon's 2 - 1050's 650 and 550.

    You have not given enough info to make a recommendation.

    Number of rounds per month, calibers to be loaded. All are good depending what your specific needs are. One reason they make different models.

    Don Verna
     
  20. Shooting Coach

    Shooting Coach Well-Known Member

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    In a long relationship with Dillon, I have had good service from them and their machines. I do not know if any parts will interchange between a 1050 and other machines. I have ordered parts for my 1050 using a manual to give part numbers and the model of the machine. If one has the time and the access to compare machines, they will quickly see about the only thing that will interchange is the die set. They are totally different machines.

    If Dillon says no charge, I am not going to argue about it. I also do not have the time or inclination to see what parts, if any, do interchange.

    I would hope some folks are not as shady as they seem to think other people are.
     
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