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thinking of buying a Dillon SL 900 -opinions?

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by Jerry944t, Dec 25, 2009.

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  1. Jerry944t

    Jerry944t Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
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    Location:
    PA
    I have had one for many years. The case feeder capacity is over 100 no matter what Dillon says.

    When i bought mine they were under $600 with the feeder, purchased at The Grand. Regardless of the price increase I really like mine and it has well over 100,000 rounds through it.

    It's a bit daunting at first because it seems so complex, and in fact I initially thought I'd made a mistake, but once you become familiar with it there isn't much not to love. It's fast, efficient and hard to make a mistake.

    I easily can crank out 100 perfect shells in 7 minutes. That is not rushing, just cruising speed.
     
  2. shooter99

    shooter99 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    1,403
    Location:
    Blue River, Wisconsin
    I have had mine for a number of years and it has worked very well. The only time I have problems with it has been my own fault, using hulls that are past there prime. I need to sort my hulls and then I would not have problems.

    Buy it. It is one of the best.

    Ken Cerney

    Wisconsin
     
  3. Bridger

    Bridger Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    712
    I've had mine for several years and like it a lot. There is a learning curve but overall it does a really good job. I've never really gotten the case feeder to work as good as it should. I never overfill it but periodically it will flip an empty hull over the edge of the feeder. I also have problems periodically with hulls getting caught as they dropping from the case feeder into the tube. Dillon couldn't help me with either problem. Not a huge issue, just kind of annoying. Pay close attention to the owners manual, make sure you complete every stroke. If something is binding, try to figure out what it is or you will break a part. Dillon is very good at customer service and will send out anything you need to keep it running. There are two parts prone to breakage if you try to force anything, the primer transfer tray and the shell plate index ring. Dillon even sends an extra primer tray as almost everyone breaks one while learning to use the machine. The index ring is a PIA to change but Dillon can give you help on how to do it that is not in the owners manual. No loader is perfect but the Dillon does do a good job and I would buy one again.
     
  4. OldPshtr

    OldPshtr Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    447
    Have a Dillon SL 900 - used for years. Was using 366 and PW 800.
    Sold the 366 and 800 collecting dust. Dillon best company to do
    business with U will ever experience. True 900 does have few quirks
    but what loader doesn't.

    Doyal Duncan
     
  5. Ruck

    Ruck Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    2,044
    Been using one for 12 ga. exclusively since 2001.....never broken a part, never had problem that reading the manual and making simple adjustments didn't fix. Loads perfect shells and does it in a hurry. Learn to watch the primer drop and develop a smooth, even pace and keep lots of components on hand....you'll need 'em!!!

    Ken Rucker
     
  6. straightshooter1

    straightshooter1 Well-Known Member TS Supporters

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2007
    Messages:
    1,933
    I ONLY sold both of mine because I was getting tendonitis and there was no Hydraulic or electric unit for the Dillon.

    Very good machine, slight learning curve, but not bad.

    Very fast, faster than my Spolar hydraulic.

    Bob
     
  7. stokinpls

    stokinpls Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    6,479
    With that array of loaders you ought to be looking for someone to run them for you instead of a new one. :)

    Definitely a right-handers reloader.

    The case feeder is absolutely necessary. Without it, you'll wear yourself out. The beauty of a Dillon is that you "never" let go of the handle with your right hand, you just feed wads with your left. The adjustable powder and shot measures are light years ahead of using bushings. Had a 9000G before the Dillon. Once I got the Dillon I used to have nightmares about the number of times I'd have to grab and let go my old G when I was running it. ;-)

    Dillon tip: Learn to do what I call the "Dillon Double Bump". At the end of the upstroke and the downstroke, bottom out the handle twice. It fills and empties the powder measures consistently and seems to help the primer feed operation as well. You don't have to move it much, just enough to be able to give it another "clunk".

    Also, substituting a 20 gauge shot drop tube is a good idea to help preventing it catching the petals on the wads on the way down. Really helps if you use Claybuster wads. Does not affect operation, if you order your 900 from the factory I'd bet they'd switch it out at no cost.

    I always figured the MECs (Grabbers, 9000s) were the best for the money (my G cost me $195 at the time), but I'd never give up my Dillon.
     
  8. Big Dog Dad

    Big Dog Dad Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    366
    Location:
    SW Pa
    Merry Christmas! (I know, politically incorrect, but *&^@#*&) I just picked up a used SL900 from a true gentleman from Ohio. I was using a MEC 9000 before that. I basically wore out the 9000 and decided to give the SL900 a try. One thing I did do when I got it home was totally tear it down to each individual nut, bolt, screw, etc. and clean and grease everything. It truly was a learning experience, but it did give me a good understanding how each part works and interacts with the other sections of the press. I would recommend this press to anyone. Dillon customer service is great! Have a great holiday and good shooting!

    Mike
     
  9. shot410ga

    shot410ga Well-Known Member

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    Jan 29, 1998
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    7,755
    Ditto on most of the above. I have two SL9000's. Once you get past the learning curve (I've had one machine since the came on the market) they are smooth as silk. My first machine has well over 100k rounds through it. A friend bought a new Spolar. It still uses bushings, and the powder and shot drops still drop those items when there is no shell underneath the tubes. For such a costly reloader, you would thing they would resdesign those flaws.
     
  10. Mo Bill

    Mo Bill Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    46
    A few posters have mentioned a "learning curve"..any specifics?
    What dealers offer best prices?

    Tnx

    Mo Bill
     
  11. Shootrman

    Shootrman Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    766
    I've had one for years, easily 100,000 rounds and counting. I would definintely get another. The customer service is second to none. Life time warranty. You call they ship....No questions asked. You have a problem, call and they give you the answer...GREAT COMPANY
     
  12. capvan

    capvan Active Member

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    1,032
    No dealers. Factory direct (or ebay) is about the only way to get one. Unless you can find one that you can pry the cold, dead, fingers from.

    I use a LOT of Dillon stuff. You just can't beat them...

    Bruce
     
  13. WoodsonEnt

    WoodsonEnt Active Member

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    May 20, 2008
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    I can get you one! Reloader w/o case feeder is $799.95, case feeder is $204.95, total is $1004.90 plus shipping.

    Matt Woodson
     
  14. WoodsonEnt

    WoodsonEnt Active Member

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    trapshooterjoe,

    I really know nothing about the Dillon. I sell MEC's and load on MEC's and Hornady's, but one of my suppliers carries the Dillon line.

    Matt Woodson
     
  15. threedeuces

    threedeuces TS Member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2008
    Messages:
    638
    My first progressive loader was a Dillon. For the most part I liked it and loaded several thousand rounds with it. The case feeder is a must and did work great. My Dillon did have a couple of quirks I did not like or could not adjust out so I sold it and purchased a P/W 800+ and have never looked back. I personally feel the P/W is a more heavy duty built machine. You will spill powder and shot all over hell if you do not have a case in those spots. That in it's self drove me over the edge. The one thing you cant beat the Dillon with is there customer service. I had a friend who had his burn to pieces in a fire and sent back to Dillon to be fixed thinking he would have to pay for all the parts and it showed up to his house a brand new machine free of charge. Pretty hard to beat that.
     
  16. Tony Fortino

    Tony Fortino Member

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2009
    Messages:
    351
    Mine was a pain in the hind end but once you get all the quirks worked out it can be considered to be one of the best.

    Tony Fortino
     
  17. stokinpls

    stokinpls Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    About the only time you get a shot spill is when a bad hull gets through and snags the wad on the way into the case. Usually it just hangs up with the cup full of shot and you have to figure out how to get it off the loader without spilling it. It can be done but is tedious.

    Up until this week, I had never had a powder spill. I was working my way through a bunch of once fired STSs and had about 12 of them pull the brass heads off leaving the now unprimed plastic hull stuck on the powder funnel and leaking Green Dot. The wasn't the loaders fault, but sure was messy. I was on the tail end of a 7000 shell loading session (over a couple weeks) and I had never seen it happen before. Hope it never does it again either.
     
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