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Hornady Apex 3.1-I Finally Got It Working

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by oleolliedawg, Aug 18, 2013.

  1. oleolliedawg

    oleolliedawg Banned User Banned TS Supporters

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    $35 worth of misc. parts, several excellent mechanics-not including me, hours of hair pulling and bad words and I finally got this plastic thing working. Probably the single most challenging reloader I ever worked on and never hope to work on one again. Actually, it's kinda neat when you iron out the bugs. Anyone else play with one of these?. No, my two Spolars are not for sale!!
    oleolliedawg_2008_03038.jpg
     
  2. grntitan

    grntitan Well-Known Member

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    Nice job. Did you have much hair to pull out?


    When the newness of getting it working wears off and it starts gathering dust, let me know. I need a working example for my Pacific/Hornady loader collection.
     
  3. djcuda

    djcuda Member

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    I have 4 of these all in great working order.The 3.1 was the hardest one for me to fine tune.You are right that they do not compare to a spolar , but they can be bought at a fair price and they do make good shells.Hornady still has most of the parts for 3.1.What are you going to do with this one?
    Dave
     
  4. oleolliedawg

    oleolliedawg Banned User Banned TS Supporters

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    I kinda promised it to my brother-in-law. He inherited the same reloader from his deceased father-in-law but was unable to make it work-me included. The mother-in-law makes him keep it at her house making it tough to work on. If I could only get it here I might consider another challenge. In the meantime I stand in awe of my accomplishment and enjoy looking at it.

    Matt, I was referring to my ear hair which is far more abundant than the few on my head!!
     
  5. Fred Neal

    Fred Neal Member

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    I feel your pain, I picked up one dirt cheep and it took about 2days of cleaning and fine tuning but if i dont have to load a large batch of shells I prefer it over my PW.

    Shoot well and often and BreakEmAll

    Fred
     
  6. oleolliedawg

    oleolliedawg Banned User Banned TS Supporters

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    The darn thing actually spits out shells. Unfortunately, it usually knocks over the reloaded ones standing beside it. This thing is now fun!!
     
  7. SL900LOADER

    SL900LOADER Member

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    I have two of them, they do not like spilled shot! but at the same time i wont sell them because my dillon wont make 7/8 oz loads untill i buy a 20 gauge shot bar, so once in a while when i want a light load i will drag it out, also this machine makes a better crimp then my $1200.00 dillion!
     
  8. shot410ga

    shot410ga Well-Known Member

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    Now that you've got it fixed, hook it up to your boat anchor line.
     
  9. oleolliedawg

    oleolliedawg Banned User Banned TS Supporters

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    shot410ga,

    I'm still in the process of admiring it. It's not often you get a chance to view an original Rembrandt or Picasso!!
     
  10. spitter

    spitter Well-Known Member TS Supporters

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    I own five Apexes (4/12, 1/20). Your particular 3.1 is an earlier version with the 3.0 resizer and depriming station. If you can keep it clean (listen for the anemic primer drop) they will run well. IMO the hull detects were really innovative concepts when you consider Hornady developed/rolled out the Apex concept in the early 90s and is now 20+ years old.

    Makes a really nice shell. Wish it could have been configured to drop the finished shell out the back or off to the side instead of in my lap (lol)... life's a compromise.

    Continue to enjoy your Apex...

    Jay
     
  11. trapshooterjoe7

    trapshooterjoe7 Member

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    I have had 3 , still have 1 as new , they are easy to maintain and can load a lot of shells in an hour. It doesn't compare to my Dillon , but stilla good loader. Joe
     
  12. HSLDS

    HSLDS Well-Known Member

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    Are parts still available for these??

    I have one which I updated many years ago (auto advance, etc.) - I've since moved to P-W loaders.

    I recently loaned mine to a friend, who got it 'out of synch' (his words) - net result is that the plastic arm that swings in and out for the wad feed is broken, and the "tube-spring" that the resizer fits into has been pulled out of round.

    Any help would be appreciated - I would like to get this unit working again, and then get it to someone who will use it.
     
  13. SL900LOADER

    SL900LOADER Member

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    Fix it and keep it, i wont let go of mine because i know someday i will break something on my nice loader and still need a back up for emergency loading.

    Are parts still available for these?? yes and no, there going going, and some gone, i had to make one part, and will go to the machine shop if i have too.
     
  14. oleolliedawg

    oleolliedawg Banned User Banned TS Supporters

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    Call Hornady. Every part I asked for was in stock. Good luck!!
     
  15. wm rike

    wm rike Member

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    I have one, but it has been pushed aside by an 800+. The gas cylinders get tired after a while, but all in all, it is a decent loader. To my mind, reliable primer feed is the key, and in this respect the 3.1 is as good as or better than my Mec Grabber, but not close to the 800+. Gotta' love that it doesn't drop shot or powder at empty stations.
     
  16. pyrdek

    pyrdek Well-Known Member

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    I have been using a 3.0 that came with the 3.1 conversion kit I picked up at the (Vandalia) Grand many, many years ago. I have had very little trouble with it and it loads a nice looking and working shell. I actually prefer it to my 366 (Pacific version). As for the shell drop, I simple put a hole in the bench and built up a little guide to help the shell fall through the hole into a big wooden box. When the box tops out I know I have a few over five hundred loaded.

    About the only issue I have is that one ot two times out a hundred the primer will not fall clean into the hole but I have become attuned to what the sound is when a primer drops normally and can quickly detect when it just doesn't sound right. A quick check and a tap and most often the problem is resolved.
     
  17. oleolliedawg

    oleolliedawg Banned User Banned TS Supporters

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    One thing I've learned is a Spolar is much too boring. The Apex introduces new challenges and makes reloading interesting again!!
     
  18. HSLDS

    HSLDS Well-Known Member

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    Thanks guys,

    Called Hornady and the wad arm is on the way. The tube spring from the base of the sizer tube is no longer available, but I was talked through what 'spec' is for it - off to the garage to twist, bend, and straighten it...
     
  19. oleolliedawg

    oleolliedawg Banned User Banned TS Supporters

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    I just cranked out a bunch of Remington Gun Clubs with that Hornady Apex. I take back everything bad I ever said about it. Actually, it's got some nice features and when properly set up loads a great shell. I'm kinda giving it a two thumbs up for the cheapest progressive reloader available!!
     
  20. spitter

    spitter Well-Known Member TS Supporters

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    Ollie...

    I completely agree. Not for the uninitiated, but once you get used to its "quirks", the Apex 3.0 and/or 3.1 are good platforms... and the shell "detects" help to limit errors.

    Jay
     
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