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I am going to start loading shells again and I am looking at buying a new loader and scales. I know this has probably been hashed out before, but what are your thoughts on decent digital scales? I'll probably buy a Mec 9000 also since I had always used Mecs before.
Thanks in advance.
 

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A "decent" digital scale will cost more than most reloaders would consider spending on a scale. A complete $150 digital loading scale costs half as much as just the load cell in a "decent" digital scale. A totally reliable beam balance can be had for under $100. The people I know who use electronic scales keep a beam balance handy to crosscheck the electronic scale. Does that tell you something? Consumer-grade digital scales are a perfect example of technology in search of a use.

Unless you're under 40 and can't tolerate waiting the 5-or-so seconds it takes for the beam to settle on a weight, you'll find the beam balance completely reliable and far more durable enough for a lifetime of reloading.

MK
 

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I use a RCBS 1500 digital scale. I had a beam scale and still do, but it seats on the shelf. The digital scale are the way to go. Not cheap but worth it.
 

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PACT makes great scales in the USA. (http://www.midwayusa.com/viewproduct/?productnumber=883267&utm_source=froogle&utm_medium=free&utm_campaign=9315)

You can buy cheaper ones through Cabelas and the like (http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/templates/links/link.jsp;jsessionid=GTQFXUKAFDIOTLAQBBJCCN3MCAEFAIWE?id=0041184216238a&type=product&cm_mmc=CRR-_-RLP-_-216238-_-productname_link&cmCat=CRR&_requestid=69710), but the PACT ones have served me well over the years.
 

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I use this one from Gamaliel. Its no high dollar digital scale but when checked against my RCBS beam scale it is suprisingly accurate. Its certainly better than not weigh checking loads at all. Its cost was easy on the pocket book and cpmes with a calibration weight. It has a tare button as well as weighing in Grains, Ounces, Grams and Carats. Tough to beat in my eyes for a casual loader.---Matt
 

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I bought a good digital..... then I sold it and bought a good beam scale like I owned for years.... for me.. I will take my RCBS beam over a digital any day.... But I like to keep things simple too :)
 

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Midway sells a small Frankford Arsenal digital scale, that for shotshell reloading, is all you need.
 

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The only negative I've found with the digital scale is they tend to be easily fooled with the slightest breeze. Frustrating to see the readout moving up and down by simply walking by or up to the scale. I've had to close doors, windows, no heating/cooling fans nearby to get a solid reading. The balance beams are considerably less expensive but their worst drawback is that moving the scale from one spot to another, perhaps inches on a work bench, can require a re-setting of the zero. That can also be frustrating. I prefer my Dillon digital but if there's any doubt the balance beam is checked and/or I'll weigh a rifle bullet for a confirmation......breakemall.....Bob Dodd
 

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<blockquote><I>"Harabor Freight sells a digital scale at a very reasonable price."</i></blockquote>

HARBOR Freight does indeed sell a digital scale for only $19.99.

Harbor Freight's digital scale also reads out in only pounds, ounces and GRAMS.

MK
 

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I purchased mine from cabellas. Made by pact. Comes with checking weights. Very accurate and easy to calibrate. About 50.00 plus shipping. Good Luck.
 

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I picked up a jeweler's scale from Ebay that measures in 1/10th of a grain and it is perfect for my reloading needs. I also have beam scales and the inexpensive digital is right on. You don't have to pay a fortune for a decent tool.
 

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I have both, the small inexpensive Frankford Arsenal electronic and my old ever ready Hornady beam scale. The electronic is quick and when calibrated works great. Like Bob Dodd says when moved need to be re zeroed. My solution, is when I use it I always put it in the same place on the bench. So take some thin sticky back foam cut the outline of the scale and stick it where you use the scale. The scale can be moved out of the way. The foam remains and is not a problem. Replace the scale and test it. Mine has never been far off. Paul in Nebraska
 

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<blockquote><I>"The balance beams are considerably less expensive but their worst drawback is that moving the scale from one spot to another, perhaps inches on a work bench, can require a re-setting of the zero."</I></blockquote>

I don't know how you do it, but rechecking the zero on a beam balance can be done a lot faster than a digital scale can be recalibrated.

MK
 

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Unknown1, I've never had to "re-calibrate" my Dillon. Any time I want to check the accuracy of the digital, I use the included test weights and/or a bullet of a known weight. And, yes, "checking" the zero on balance beam is easy but I've witnessed and read a great number of users that plop their balance beam out on the desk, zero it once, then move it to a handy spot or multiple spots, and never consider it well might read different from location to location; it is, after all, based on the surface being level or at least the same from spot to spot......Bob Dodd
 

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<blockquote><I>"... but I've witnessed and read a great number of users that plop their balance beam out on the desk, zero it once, then move it to a handy spot or multiple spots, and never consider it well might read different from location to location;..."</I></blockquote>

It's complete and utter nonsense to say that the tool is at fault for the ignorance of its users!

Once manufactured, balances require virtually no maintenance and will continue to operate accurately without any additional resources for as long as they exist.

MK
 

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My balance beam scales are accurate but slow. My PACT scale is accurate and fast. I once has a MEC 600 Jr. that loaded very good shells but it was slow. I now have a PW hydraulic machine and it loads very good shells and is fast. I prefer using my PACT scale and my PW press.

At my age, I need to conserve every minute I can. Adding one day to your life to enjoy the things you like to do might not seem very important unless it is you last day.

Pat Ireland
 

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...and if it is your last day, by the next day you won't remember one darned thing about what you did the day before!

MK
 

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A plenty good digita is within 1/10 of a grain. That is way more accurate then you would ever need for shotgun shells. I havwe scales that cost more then most reloading set ups and I sedom use them reloading shotgun shells. I use them for reloading rifle shells that are shot from 600 to 1000 yards where 1/10 of a grain can make a 4 inch diffrence in impact.

Even then it is debateable if weighing powder down to the 1/4 of a KERNEL of powder makes any diffrence at all.

a balance is simple and affective but a cheap digital scale is less money when bought new then a 505 balance is. It is also just as accurate and you do not have to mess with zeroing a charge.

One is not "Better" then the other. They are diffrent, and at diffrent price points each is "Better" then the other.

I know guys who weigh shotgun powder charges one at a time. They do not shoot any better then you or I do. It's in their head but just because it's only in your head doesn't mean that it isn't important.

The mind is another powerful tool. If you think accurate charges to the 1/10 are needed then buy a good scale and load them one at a time. I own such scales and use the bushings on my mecs and confirm they are close once in a while. When I miss there is always a reason but it isn't because the powder charge wasn't withing 1/10 of a grain. Jeff
 
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