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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
BLUF: (Bottom Line Up Front) is the MEC 9000 the best “progressive” loader for the price?
I need some advice on a new loader, I am not new to loading/reloading shells – just a little challenged equipment wise. Been using a Lee Loadall II it’s SLOW labor intense process and it’s worn out – leaking powder and now shot. I have been weighing powder/shot for every shell and it’s not good. The whole setup is heading for the dumpster tonight, just couldn’t do it last night.

Options
1. Buy used and save a few bucks over new
2. Buy a new one, not worth getting someone else’s heart ache
3. MEC 9000 isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, get a ____
 

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I will be as BLUF as I can be. I trolled Ebay for a few weeks and by looking at pictures found a used MEC9000 and bought it. Loaded several thousand shells with only 2 problems. Cross bolt broke on handle, very common, R&R bolt making shells in 5 minutes. Wore out wad finger, R&R, no problem. Was having a little problem with collet, cleaned as per manual and applied a little never seize, made lots more shells. Decided it was time to go to next step and bought P/W 800+ and added electric motor, still making lots of shells but sitting down and really being comfortable.
I put my 9000 up on my club board and sold it in a week and checking prices all over and its condition, used it free. Fellow member was very happy and is making lots of shells. BLUF...........9000 is a great loader, fast, efficient, for the money. Hope this helps. Steve
 

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I've always used MEC 9000. You have your little issues here and there but I've never had a big problem and I think it's a great loader.
 

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A lot depends on how many shells a week you shoot.

You really can't go wrong buying a MEC 9000. Without even hurrying, you should be able to put out 300+ shells an hour.

The last one I bought, I added the Auto-Mate. But if you want to start out not costing as much, you can go with a used reloader and not have to worry to much about it. I say that, because there really isn't a whole lot that can go wrong that you can't fix.

If you chose to buy a used, remember that MEC is just a phone call away and they can talk you through anything that might go wrong, or is broken.

Having said that, I can also attest to the fact that they hardly ever break down.

I have had MEC's for over 40 years, and have only sent mine into the company one time and I really could have fixed it myself, but chose not to.

I've been using MEC's since I started, and I highly recommend them.

Hauxfan!
 

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Going from a Lee Loadall to a MEC 9000, it will appear to you that you can now load at supersonic speed. I guess you need to determine IF you need that speed. I reload slowly, don't use the primer feed and check a few of the 9000's stations before pulling down the handle. I'm still getting 225 to 250 shells per hour.

New or used, the 9000 is a very good unit for the money. I bought one in 28 ga. and one in .410, both used from the same seller at a very attractive price. I bought about $50 total in extra parts and did some minor tweaking and then had two great operating machines. New or used, expect to do at least minor adjustments before you're 100% satisfied. Would I buy used again? Yup!

Price-wise, good condition units can be found for half of new price with sub-gauges (28 & .410) slight more than half. YMMV. If buying sight unseen, ask for a fair number of photos. If all is original, shiny, no rust, clean, complete, etc., the units probably in good working condition. As always, take the necessary precautions against being the victim of ever present scammers.

Hope this helps ------
 

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Points to consider.

Regardless of which brand Progressive you choose, you will go through a learning curve.

That learning curve will be revisited over time as this is a mechanical device and things wear and will effect change. All I'm saying is, they don't load shells themselves.
It takes a mechanically inclined set-up mechanic /operator to make them purrrrrr. Don't have to be rocket scientist , but definitely need to have patience and not be afraid to pick up the telephone for help when in need. MEC phone support is Awesome.

The 9000 has been around a long time and you will only need to look within your own local club for some experienced advice. ( ie More 9000's out there in service than any other brand by far .. price point for sure.)

Buying used is cost effective if the machine is in decent shape. Don't be afraid of this option. I have three and none were bought new. Just be prepared, that you will probably have to do a little tuning when buying used, and perhaps a little worn part replacement if needed.

My 1st experience w/loading was with a 9000, and once I got going with some expert hands-on training, I thought to myself " how in the heck does anybody load on a single stage .. cruel and unusual punishment" i.e. take that Lee Load-All to the Range and blast it .. and smile !

Now .. the Best advice .. on the 9000. NEVER EVER Trust that a primer has dropped with out visually seeing it happen. This is not to dissuade you, but only to make you aware that the primer will "skip" when you least expect it ... and Viola ..the Shop-Vac is your friend. hehehehee

Cost Effective - go get one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I loaded shells ALL last Friday and Saturday - ended with almost 2 cases - they lasted about 1 hour between my son and friends shooting Sunday and still had to break out some new shells. I got boxes of hulls but with the Lee Loadall I don't want or have the time to load them or keep up with our consumption of shells.
200-250 shells an hour, what does a guy do with all that free time,,,,,,,,,
 

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Per Bullet Thrower: "Now .. the Best advice .. on the 9000. NEVER EVER Trust that a primer has dropped with out visually seeing it happen. This is not to dissuade you, but only to make you aware that the primer will "skip" when you least expect it ... and Viola ..the Shop-Vac is your friend. hehehehee"

But only one of the reasons I load primers manually and don't use the auto primer feed. Yup, slow ....... but steady. One hand loads a new hull and the other drops in a new primer. As always, YMMV --------
 

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All great advice posted here,

I run 4 - 9000 Mecs, One in each gauge, and they run great.

Yes the learning curve will be sizeable going from the Load-All to a 9000, But man with your new found free time it will be worth it.

DGH
 

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I have one set up for lead and one for steel. Love em. When there's trouble just ask here.
 

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Going from a Lee to MEC 9000gn progressive as other's have cited there's a learning curve and if your mechanically inclinded and handy the learning curve will be short. Suggest starting off loading in the single stage mode for a couple of boxes until you start feeling and hearing when everything is in sync. You'll save yourself aggravation and the chances of dropped shot will decrease. However, have a shop vac handy because you will drop shot until get your routine down. Other suggestions, securely fasten the loader to your bench with either bolts or clamps and putting the loader in a deep baking pan helps corral shot drops. Really, all the reloading brands are good. MEC customer support is very good. Good Luck!
 

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Contrary to what everyone has said, you will not save money. You will not have extra time. Buying a MEC 9000 you will get an excellent loader that will put out a lot of shells quickly. Assuming you can still tie your shoes the MEC is easy to operate and maintain. Cheap enough that you may even recoup your initial cost if your son, his friends, and yourself take advantage of the new found free time. Hope you can afford the larger amount of components you will need.
Just remember with any progressive machine, Slow and steady wins the race.
 

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Going from a Lee to MEC 9000gn progressive as other's have cited there's a learning curve and if your mechanically inclinded and handy the learning curve will be short. Suggest starting off loading in the single stage mode for a couple of boxes until you start feeling and hearing when everything is in sync. You'll save yourself aggravation and the chances of dropped shot will decrease. However, have a shop vac handy because you will drop shot until get your routine down. Other suggestions, securely fasten the loader to your bench with either bolts or clamps and putting the loader in a deep baking pan helps corral shot drops. Really, all the reloading brands are good. MEC customer support is very good. Good Luck!
This reminds me of what I did with my three MECs. Went to a cabinet shop and got the cutouts from where they had cut the Formica covered wood for a sink. Bolted the MEC to that, put rubber feet on the bottom; they don't move around at all and are easy to move off the bench if necessary.
 

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All the people with MECs will tell you MEC is best because generally that is all they know. It's the same with pretty much every reloader, people will recommend what they have. I have a Hornady 366, 2 of them in fact, and a separate die head for 28 ga. They have served me reliably for many years, seem to be built like a tank and take very little adjustment. What I recommend you do is look at all the progressives and see what you like. Models to consider include the MEC 9000, the Hornady 366, the Dillon 900 and the P/W 800. I also encourage you to keep your eye on eBay where used examples of all these models routinely come up for sale at good prices. If you get one and you have any question, just ask here, there are gurus on each model who will happily chime in with advice that comes with experience from using them. Good luck with your quest.
 

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I have loaded on a 9000G since they first came out. Thousands of shells with no issues so far. I can`t attest to the other manufactures because I only load on Mec`s. And there the only presses I`ll ever use.
 

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I have loaded on, sold, and serviced about every press out there. MEC 9000 hands down. I easily load a flat in around 22 minutes. Take a few minutes and make sure the primer feed is set up correctly, and it is a good idea to watch them go in the hole.
 

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I can load 400 shells an hour on a MEC 650 so a 9000 would have a little more production than that with the auto advance and shell eject. Watching the primer drop is part of the process for me.
 

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I was debating on whether or not to reply to this but what the hell....What Nebs said is correct...people will recommend what they have and know. I also agree with him in saying look at a lot of different ones. I am new to reloading shotgun shells and when I started asking around I got all of the same responses...MEC MEC MEC...PW PW PW...SPOLAR! (beautiful by the way but $$$$). In the end I ended up with a RCBS GRAND (that never gets mentioned) that I got brand spanking new in the box never touched for half price. I set it up according to the directions....which was almost perfect from factory....I reloaded 25 shells that looked perfect and went out and shot my first 25 straight with them ( I GOT LUCKY ). I liked a lot of the features that are on this loader that others didn't have, it is built like a tank and the price was perfect for me....not to mention the lifetime warranty on any part even if you screw up and break it...no questions asked! Their customer service is phenomenal! (yes I used it).

Point is a lot of different loaders out there....look a lot before you buy. If you have someone who has one near you that you can go see I recommend doing so. If you buy top quality it will be the last loader you will need!

Wish you the best of luck and if you want to inquire about the Grand Ill help all I can just like all of the other great folks here!

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