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Got the PW 800+:should have gone with the Spolar

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by Skeets, Aug 11, 2010.

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  1. Skeets

    Skeets TS Member

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    Just received a new PW 800+ with the shell feeder, was undecided whether or not to go with the Spolar, first impressions with the PW indicate I made a mistake.

    Got the unit out of the box, mostly ready to go, decided to wait until I had some experience with the basic unit before I introduced the shell feeder into the equation.

    Followed the instructions, looked pretty simple and early results, about 20 -25 reloaded shells seemed to indicate I made the correct choice over the more expensive Spolar: the shells were OK, weights accurate on both shot and powder, nice crimps, the machine easy to operate.

    All so a sudden the primers stopped seating flush (no change in any component or adjustments made): readjusted it and seemed OK.

    Then the primers stopped feeding: took all shells out of the unit and cycled the machine, primers fed OK, as soon as I reintroduced the shells the primers stopped feeding. Swept up the powder from my bench. Still struggling with getting this unit to spit out shells reliably without making more adjustments than I think should be necessary.

    Not to bore you but I am disappointed in the PW- the reviews I read on this site were all so positive. I have been reloading both metallics (many different mfgrs but finally all Dillon 650's) and shotshells for years with 4 MEC 9000G's, and also shotshells for a while with the DIllon 900, not new to this hobby.
    Anyone else have problems like this with the PW or am I am going negative too soon, maybe there is a learning curve to get this thing to work reliably?

    Thanks for any comments
    Charlie Mahar
     
  2. WesleyB

    WesleyB Well-Known Member

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    Aug 19, 2007
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    1,473
    My 800+ is 3 years old with only about 25,000 rounds loaded on it. Only adjustment i made was the crimp starter to make my center of the shells close properly on the gray and red AA's and the STS's. I did file the hangnail on the primer feed slide that would hang on the next primer to be loaded causing the slide to hang and therefore never put a primer on the post.

    I have made no other adjustments. I am happy with my purchase and would purchase another in a heart beat.

    WesleyB
     
  3. Didreckson

    Didreckson Active Member

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    I have said many times that the P/W will turn out a great reload. Whiz is 2nd to none for support. But my experience with the 800+, shell feeder, automate and then hydraulic unit with the 800+ was the same as yours. P/W had a poorly cut primer ram in the unit when I got it. I ordered some of Whiz's hardened rams and problem was basically solved. Still, it seemed like it was always something.

    So, I got the Spolar and have never looked back. It is a champ, and adjustments are just a distant memory. Perfect....certainly not, nothing is, but in reloading it is as close as you will find. Support is first class (as is Whiz, can't say the same for the factory however), and while I am a big fan of having all spare parts around I might need, I have not even put a set of wad guide fingers in probably 2+ years now.
     
  4. neofight

    neofight TS Member

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    I recently bought the same machine, my first reloader. I have to say, my experience has been good. I made a couple adjustments and aside from having to tap the primer tray once in awhile, it has been performing flawlessly. I've only loaded about 4,000 shells so far, but i feel i made a good choice.Hope you get it adjusted and working well.
     
  5. skeeljc

    skeeljc Supporting Vendor Supporting Vendor

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    Charlie, the P/W loaders are a bit different from a MEC. When the primer is not seating flush you first need to be sure the hull is FULLY inserted at the first station. If the hull is not inserted all the way in the shell holder at the first station it will be pushed in further by the primer and the primer will not be flush. If you adjust the primer depth and continue to let the primer punch seat the primer AND push the hull further into the shell holder you will eventially bend the primer punch. A bent primer punch will eventially cause cycling problems. You will end up chasing a bunch of other problems when the REAL problem is in the FIRST station (been there, done that!).

    Jim Skeel
     
  6. goose2

    goose2 Well-Known Member

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    I had a Dillon 900 with case feeder. Sold it and got a P/W 800+ that come with auto drive and case feeder and I don't have any reason to own anything else. Mine will loads a box of shells in 90 seconds with out any problems. What little issues I have had are mine and not the loaders. I mite also add that I have loaded thousands and thousands of loads and all is well.
     
  7. JACK

    JACK Well-Known Member Supporting Vendor

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    Skeel is on target. But my first recommendation would be to load some once fired hulls and make sure they are brass based such as Fed GM, STS, or AAs. Steel base hulls can often be oversize and not want to fully seat in the die.
     
  8. Unknown1

    Unknown1 Well-Known Member

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    It's also important to note that the difference in the way the MEC and the P-W each support the hull base when inserting the primer makes a huge difference in how easy it is to seat primers flush.

    The MEC uses the powder drop tube to support the primer tunnel from the inside of the hull. You can force just about any primer into any hull with that design. The P-W supports the hull base only by its rim leaving the center of the base (and the primer tunnel) unsupported so it can flex if the primer is hard to insert and leave the primer not fully seated. And if I remember correctly, the Spolar uses the same design and suffers from the same deficiency.

    The problem isn't major if you are loading brass base hulls (what the P-W was designed for), but some steel base/primer combinations simply won't allow full seating without abusing the press.

    There are some workarounds that can be applied to once-fired hulls to address this matter depending on the hull and primer combination. The hulls can be deprimed/primed on a different machine amd Remington hulls can have extra plastic at the end of the primer tunnel removed with a drill bit.

    I have trouble getting Winchester primers to fully seat in once-fired Gun Club hulls. My workaround is to use an old Lee Load-All II to deprime and then primer several 5 gallon buckets full of hulls at a time. Then when I need them I remove the primer punch from the P-W and just cycle the primed hulls through the loader skipping the priming step. Once the hulls have been fired once with WW primers, things go more smoothly the rest of the time.

    MK
     
  9. Skeets

    Skeets TS Member

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    Mar 13, 2010
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    Helpful feedback, the primer set up on the PW is interesting, I will keep the way it works in mind as I try to work out the kinks. Thank God I didn't try to jump in with the hull feeder right off the bat.

    I'm only using OF STS or AA hulls.

    Thanks to all.

    Charlie
     
  10. phirel

    phirel TS Member

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    It is necessary to have a PW adjusted properly to load proper shells. I only use primers that are specifically designed for the hull I am loading.

    Pat Ireland
     
  11. Bob M

    Bob M Member

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    Pat, you gotta be careful suggesting logic like that. It is crazy though. It almost seems like the primers, hulls, and wads were somehow designed to work together as an assembly!

    I have several friends who happily use the Fed 209A primer in STS hulls. It is a great primer. It allows them to save a little on powder too. I tried to use them with the STS cases and the shells had 'the wobbles' unless I really leaned on the primers with the primer seating station. This bothered me a bit and I went back to Remington primers very quickly. They make the 7625 smoke a little more than the Fed 209As, but it keeps the bugs away.

    My PW 800B is very old. I am the third owner. I bought it from the frustrated second owner for $50. Best $50 I ever spent. He threw in 1500 STS hulls too with the loader. Is there any way of dating the older PWs?
     
  12. zzt

    zzt Well-Known Member

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    Bob, if you are looking for a little hotter primer than an STS209 to use in Remington hulls, try the Winchester 209. Remington primers are about .010" shorter than all the Win, Fed, Fio, etc., so Winchester puts a reduced diameter step in the top of their primers so it will work flawlessly in Remington hulls.
     
  13. Bob M

    Bob M Member

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    Thanks for the info zzt, but I am happy with the Remington primers. I will use the WW 209s if I can't get the Remingtons.
     
  14. shark1

    shark1 Member

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    I was the same way of "which machine"? My friend said buy the Spolar and I did. Problem one it takes 60-90 days for delivery. Reloading problems, I will let you know when I get my first problem. 7,000 on it so far. It is very simple with no learning curve, I mean none. It meters perfect, it reloads cheap and expensive hulls well. Simple! Perfect for a guy like me, (lol). Mike Sharkey, DC
     
  15. whiz white

    whiz white Strong Supporter of Trapshooting Banned

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    Hey, rather than complain about it on a national forum, call the factory.

    You probably aren't familiar with it enough to make it run smoothly. I've used BOTH the P/W and Spolar and each has it own idiocryansies.

    I'd bet they'd take it back and refund you your money.

    WW
     
  16. 1brucem

    1brucem TS Member

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    Whiz, this is a national forum to discuss things just like this. Like Whiz says, You probably aren't familiar with it yet. I've been using the 900 series for over 20 years now and am still learning about the machine. I have bought downrange wads that were designed for either 1 ounce or 1 1/8 ounce of shot in straight wall hulls from guys who could not get them to work in their reloaders. With the proper adjustments they work great. The point is, If you don't know how to make them work, your opinion is that they are crap. They aren't crap, you just don't know how to make them work yet. I have to ask you to adjust your expectations. No reloader is mindless, and it take time and effort to understand how they work, how they adjust and what components work with each other. Because of this thread, hopefully there will be a new appreciation for that fact with the newbies who rely on this forum for insight and information.
     
  17. Mark425

    Mark425 TS Member

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    Come on Whiz..... you COULD offer some suggestions instead of just driving away business.
     
  18. KEYBEAR

    KEYBEAR Active Member

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    Skeets
    I bet if you did call PW or send it back it would cost you .
    The post you see from a PW-dealer would be one more reason not to mess with PW . I have never seen anyone from Spolar give a customer an answer like that . Just makes you run out and buy one don,t it .

    Save yourself time and money send it back if you can .
     
  19. blazer1

    blazer1 TS Member

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    Yo, the primer feed into the arm is controlled by the rubber wheel. If you can manually pull back the primer arm then you need to adjust it. You adjust it in the following manner. The black metal arm that rides between the well is connected by two hex head screws. Un-loosen them and slide behind them a shim so that the metal arm now pushes the primer arm further back. This will solve your feeding problem.
     
  20. whiz white

    whiz white Strong Supporter of Trapshooting Banned

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    1. I did offer a recommendation - send it back. Can't get any better than that. Also, if the primer ram is malfunctioning, then you have probably bent it's hook. These machines work great right out of the box.

    2. I am reminded of two old addages: (1) "You can please some on the people all of the time, all of the people some of the time, but never all the people all the time.", (2) the idea that all people can operate mechanical equipment, much like the computer tech who said "send it back," does have some merit, believe me!

    3. I guess if that hurts some or you fella's feelings, I am truly sorry, but that's life.

    I also know that P/W has one meny occasions, sent call tags, so you may not have to "pay" to have it returned. Particularly if you paid via credit card, they must refund all.

    Finally, if a customer wants the hydro or electric drive and shell feeder when he buys a new reloader, I always tell him to run the reloader a couple thousand rounds BEFORE installing EACH add-on. They don't always listen, but at least I have exxplained it to them.
     
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