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Discussion Starter #1
I have recently came upon 6 mec bars. below is the information from the end of each bar. Can someone help me out with the specs for each ? Thanks in advance.

12 GA either 8G or 86 and there is a 3/8-16 threaded hole in the end of the bar as well, then a thru hole from the threads all the way to the powder hole.
302 100
12 GA 2
12 GA OH
12 GA O

I think they are single stage bars but I'm not sure, the only exception might be the 12 GA 8G - 86 ?

Thanks,
Skip Dillin
 

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Skip, do they not have numbers on the end like 302space 100 or 502space 100? The first three digits indicate single stage or progressive and the next indicates the shot weight, 100 being one oz. Some of the really old ones were fixed powder drops as well and had different numbers. Are their any other number on them, normally on the end? Jackie B.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Jack,

The only thing stamped on the end of the bars is 12 Ga on all then the O or OH or 2 or 86. One has 302 100 which made me think all of them might be single stage, but I'm not real sure.
 

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The 302 100 is probably a more recent 1oz bar for a single stage press. The O, OH, etc, sound like the older fixed bars. You can usually tell just by looking at the spacing of the holes in the bar. If they are closer together like the "302" bar, then they are single stage bars. If they are further apart, then they are probably for a progressive press. A quick call to Mec would identify them more reliably and they can also give you an idea of what they might be the equivalent of, regarding powder bushing size, and what amount of shot they are supposed to drop. I sort of remember the loading data for the O and OH bars, but I'd hesitate to post it since most of the components used would not be available these days. They were for Target loads in the 12ga.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks to everyone for your help. I'll give Mec a call and get the latest info from them. I'm sure that the AL-5 and 450 LS are going to be real hard to find now a days. ( that kind of gives you an idea of how long it has been since I loaded, shot was $ 4.95 a bag and we used air wedge wads with a 3/8 filler in mark 5 papers ).

Skip Dillin
 

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http://www.mayvl.com is the Mec website. There you can find just about anything you would want to know about Mec loaders and parts. Did not look to see if they still catalog the really old stuff. 302 is bars for single stage and 502 is bars for progressives.Bill
 

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They are single stage. They are fixed bars except for the 302 100 that should be the newer 1 oz bar. To be sure simply look to see if there is the recess on the powder side for the bushing.
 

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Dillin 4...the bars with the letters on them were made for the single stage MEC loaders. You will note the powder drop hole is a non bushing deal. In the old days MEC made specific bars for both powder and shot. The number 2 bar was designed for Reddot and GreenDot. That bar was supposed to throw 23 grains of Reddot (standard 1200 fps target load with paper hulls and paper and fiber wads)The OH and O bars came later when the air wedges and plastic wads were introduced and threw less than 23 grains. In between was the number 1 bar which threw about 21 grains.Cant remember what an 8G bar was for. I loaded a jillion shells with these old bars on a MEC 400 model which at the time was the best you could buy. I had bars for AL5, AL7, Unique, Herco and other powders.When MEC began to make bars for bushngs I wound up with maybe 12 of the fixed powder bars. Still have them and if aluminum gets to be valuable someday I will be in good shape. I have often wondered why MEC does not make bars with bushings for different shot weights (if the bars are wide enough for shot bushings). Somewhere I still have a MEC chart that shows which bars were made for a certain powder. Those were the old "slow days" of reloading but I never had a bad shell loaded on the MEC 400. I can well remember a nuber 2 twenty guage bar was for 16 grains of Reddot.(standard 20 guage target load). Your post has brought back some old and fun memories. Your best bet is to put these bushings away and remember that time of reloading. Sincerely...Fred
 
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