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Info on Dillon SL900

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by Mr Lewis, Nov 27, 2010.

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  1. Mr Lewis

    Mr Lewis TS Member

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    Feb 18, 2010
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    Im interested in buying the Dillon sl900 and would like any info I can get on them, ya or na and why? Thanks in advance for your thoughts. Mark
     
  2. halfmile

    halfmile Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    15,643
    Location:
    Green Bay Wisconsin
    Nice outfit, support can't be beat. I set one up for my dentist. I personally can't afford one because he got all my nomey.

    HM
     
  3. Pocatello

    Pocatello Active Member

    Joined:
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    1,547
    Do a thread search - there are a lot of posts about it.

    As halfmile said, the support can't be beat. I bought one used from a member of this forum. He did not have the original boxes to ship it in, so called Dillon, and they sent him a set for free. After I got it, I broke a part trying to force something, so called Dillon (on their 800 line), explained that I was not the original owner, and that it was my fault that the part was broken. Their help guy said it didn't matter, asked for my name, address, and phone number so they could get me in their database, and sent me the parts for free, shipping included. Whenever I've needed a part or advice, I call them up, and the advice is usually spot-on, and the parts always free. A little over a year ago I had an issue with the shell feeder that I could not work out, so I boxed it up and sent it back for an overhaul. One item was the shell feeder motor, which ran slow when cold. The press manual clearly states that the motor is not their part, and is covered only for one year. It didn't matter. The press was totally overhauled, the motor replaced, and my only cost was the UPS bill to send it to Arizona. Everything else was covered, return shipping included.

    The charge bars for both powder and shot are completely adjustable, no bushings. If you want 17.8 grains of powder and 1 1/16 ounces of shot, just get your scale and set it that way. The drops are very consistent. The stations are hull activated. If there is no hull, no powder will be dropped. If you forget to put a wad in, no shot will be dropped.

    The loader is very fast. It is no chore to load two flats or more per hour without rushing. You keep your right hand on the handle, and use your left to feed wads. The only screwups, not common, are if a primer fails to drop and you don't notice, leading to powder spilling through the primer hole on station three, or a hull not fully inserting in station one, leading to a shot spill into the shell bin if you don't correct it and complete the stroke. Any shell can be removed from any station at any time.

    Some complain that the primer tray only holds 100 primers, that the powder reservoir is too small, or the hull feeder holds less than 100. My main problem is that I'm always running out of components, not that I'm taking too much time to fill it. Right now I have plenty of hulls, and enough powder, but am out of primers and shot. It does not take much time to run out of something at a rate of 600+ finished shells per hour without breaking a sweat.
     
  4. Mr Lewis

    Mr Lewis TS Member

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    Feb 18, 2010
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    DT10, witch loader did you go to, and why? I'm asking because if I buy another loader I want it to last a long time. Thanks Mark
     
  5. trapshooterjoe7

    trapshooterjoe7 Member

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2007
    Messages:
    551
    The SL 900 is about as good as you can get for the money, once you get the feel of how the primer seats you will have VERY FEW problems if any. I have tried just about all of the loaders on the market,its hard to beat a Dillon and thier service!!Joe
     
  6. warren

    warren Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
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    948
    Location:
    Fernley, Nevada
    I owned a SL 900 and can say it is a very good loader, fast and accurate. My only critisizym is that it's easy to get a double charge. If you start the cycle don't stop if you try to stop or back up be sure and check the charge, I got a big surpisse more than once. Otherwise it's a great loader with great service.

    warren
     
  7. warpspeed

    warpspeed Member

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2007
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    569
    Location:
    Glendora, CA
    I've had mine for about 7 months. I've loaded close to 10K shells on it. My previous loader was a PW. When I went looking for an upgrade, the one thing I really wanted was a shell feeder. I've had other Dillon presses. A 550 & 1050 so I'm very comfortable with a progressive press and liked how the 1050 feeds a shell and all you need to do is but a bullet on and pull the handle.

    Pocatello pointed out some of the reasons I like mine. The powder & shot bars are tough to beat. I really like the shot bin holding 25#. The powder measure holds enough that if you fill every time you add primers, you will not run out. They make a low powder alarm if you are so inclined. You can have 100 primers in it and 100 staged ready to go but it loads components so easy its no necessary.

    Yes, the recommend only to have 70 hulls but it isn't that big of a deal.

    Is the Spolar a better machine ? I'd say yes. Does it make better reloads ? I don't think so but I suppose it could. If money were no object, I'd probably get a Spolar but for now, the SL900 works just fine.
     
  8. trapshooterjoe7

    trapshooterjoe7 Member

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    551
    Waren, i have loaded thousands and never had that problem, and don't understand how you could get a double charge, how can you work the lever and the shells not advance?Joe
     
  9. Ahab

    Ahab Well-Known Member

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    Jan 29, 1998
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    3,650
    TSJoe ... nothing is foolproof!

    That's because when you think you have it foolproof ... along comes a bigger fool!
     
  10. Rastoff

    Rastoff Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2009
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    1,319
    I've only had my SL900 for a short time and I like it a lot. It does take a little time to get it dialed in, but it will stay where you put it. The powder drops are insanely consistent.

    Check it out:

    <object width="480" height="385"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/LHQjGU0cRkg?fs=1&hl=en_US"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/LHQjGU0cRkg?fs=1&hl=en_US" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="480" height="385"></embed></object>
     
  11. 700X-user

    700X-user Member

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    Feb 13, 2007
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    Location:
    NW PA
    I have a hard time believing that you can raise the turret high enough to drop powder and not have it index when you lower it. I have loaded thousands of rounds on my SL900 with no double charges. I purchased a second SL900 from a disgruntled trapshooter off of this site several years ago. He told me that the primer system was junk and he couldn't sell the press quick enough. When I received the press I found that the original owner had altered the primer chute with a dremel tool. I guess he knew more than the design engineers. I contacted Dillon and tried to buy a replacement part. They wouldn't sell me one. They sent me one for free. It's called the NO BS WARRANTY!

    Ed "proud owner of 4 Dillon presses."
     
  12. amerrycan

    amerrycan TS Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2010
    Messages:
    74
    I reload on a Dillon SL900 my self. I have also used PW800 and 366, Have a friend with a spolar as well. IMOP The dillon is the best press out there. You dont have the noise of a spolar and a dillon in the right hands is WAY faster then a spolar as well you can stop mid stroke if something feels wrong or you made a mistake unlike a sploar. It is faster and smother then a PW800 or a 366 IMOP. I have NEVER doubble charged a shell in mine and think it would be really hard to do if you are watching what you are doing. If you get a dillon a power case feed is a %100 must. I have never broke a primer feeder ever again just watch what u are doing. If you do break one Dillon will replace it free no questions asked. If you need help with set up just call them and they will spend all the time you need. It is a pretty thoughtless reloader. I will never load on anything but a Dillon. I never have to tinker with mine. Just use it and Keep the componets flowing. That is my only gripe before you know it you are refilling something and you just pumped out 250 shells.

    I also bought mine from another member off the fourms that was older and did not shoot enough to warrent reloading anymore and was trying to just recoupe some money. He also owned another dillon and a spolar. He had the same thing to say about a spolar as I do. LOUD, slow, and no stoping mid stroke.

    James
     
  13. Chipmaker

    Chipmaker Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2009
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    464
    Warren did not have the bolt tight enough that goes thru the lever arms on the powder measure! If you dont have them snugged up when you start to drop the table just a little bit it will reset the powder measure, just with the drag of the bushing around the pull rod is enough to re set it. I know it happen to me had two double charges in a 1100 and it lived. We when thru the shells and weighed them on a digital scale and you still wont find them! I cut 150 shell apat and weighed the charges and found two more! Have kept the bolt tight and it is not possible to double charge a shell now.
    I own 3 SL900's and would not have anything else, I also own a XL650 that I do my 45acp and 9mm major rounds on.
     
  14. DTrykow

    DTrykow Active Member

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    Jan 29, 1998
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    1,542
    trapshooterjoe,700X & Chipmaker: I agree. I've loaded 10's of thousands of rounds with never a double charge. I'm even loading the infamous Win AA's with no problems. I'm switching heads loading everything. Great machine. Built like a tank. Dave T.
     
  15. southjblue

    southjblue Active Member

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    I use a Dillon sl900 and a mec 9000H---Love them both---I use the Dillon for 1oz and the mec for 1-1/8---I find them to be everything said above---The H part of the Mec makes loading a little easier---To me,the main thing with both loaders is to get in a habit of watching the primer drop every time---After that both loaders are great---MYSTIC---
     
  16. shot410ga

    shot410ga Well-Known Member

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    Jan 29, 1998
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    7,763
    Great machines. I own two SL 900's. One is for singles STS shells and the other is for Handicap AA shells. I have loaded 100,000's of shells on these machines, with no real issues. Keep them clean and well lubed and they will crank out shells at a rate that's hard to believe.
     
  17. Mr Lewis

    Mr Lewis TS Member

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    Feb 18, 2010
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    17
    shot410ga is it hard to adjust the dillon to diffrent loads say 1oz to 1 1/8 oz ?
     
  18. stokinpls

    stokinpls Well-Known Member

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    Jan 29, 1998
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    6,483
    About the only thing that slows my Dillon down are empties that have been stepped on. ;-)


    Chipmaker:

    Any way you could provide pictures or better yet a video of this happening? Was this happening during a stoppage (like when a wad gets snagged on the mouth) or during normal cycling?
     
  19. markostrunk

    markostrunk Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2007
    Messages:
    74
    Over the past 40 years I've owned all the MECs, several PWs, a pre-Hornady Pacific 366, an RCBS Grand and a Dillon SL900. I loved the Dillon metallic cartridge reloaders and the Dillon service, but felt that the SL900 itself was a PITA. Hull feed, light load shot drop, difficulty with the wad ram squashing a variety of brands of wads and primer feed were the biggest problems.

    I found the machine difficult to set up for light loads. It came set up for 1-1/8 oz Winchester components and did fairly well with those. When I went to other hulls and light loads the problems started to occur. I was glad to get rid of the one I had.
     
  20. southjblue

    southjblue Active Member

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    I use mine for light loads and find no problem adjusting for any load---MYSTIC---
     
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