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P/w 800 plus Vs Spolar. Advice needed

5407 Views 64 Replies 34 Participants Last post by  Nebs
I have two boys that shoot SCTP/AIM singles, doubles and caps. They shoot about 20K or more rounds a year between the two to them. If they don't shoot into college I still have at least eight years with one kid shooting. Currently I am loading on a RCBS Grand but would like a reloader with hydraulic or electric drive.

If I'm reading the website correctly I can buy a Ponsness/Warren 800 plus with electric drive for $1900. The Spolar Gold with hydraulic drive is $4645.

I have never loaded on either machine but it seems that the better buy would be the P/W loader.

Is the Spolar worth the extra $2745?

Thanks
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I have no experience with the Spolar, but I do have a PW800+. Several years ago, I upgraded from a MEC9000 because I was getting older and I had to use 2 hands to pull the handle. The 800+ had a definite learning curve, but I got the bugs worked out and I have the shell feeder and the electric automate. I know the prices for PW have gone up and they are several months backordered. I have had no problems with the 800+ machine, but I load Federal Top Guns 99% of the time and found the machine works better if I run the hulls through the MEC Supersizer. There have been several machines both Spolar and PW for sale that you cloud look for also.
 

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Both will get you from point A to point B & make a lot of great shells rather quickly. A lot has to do with personal preference. The PW operates right to left & the Spolar left to right & I know of a veteran PW loader that was practically given a Spolar & chose the PW for just that reason. As with any tool some can make the job easier than others & some are more pleasurable to use. Used Spolars usually sell close to what youll pay for one new, I cant speak to the PW. I'd recommend a used loader & prefer the Spolars because the only come in one model are new feature up gradable, fairly indestructible & should you ever decide against reloading their easy to sell. PW's come in good better & best models. I know of a few that have been passed along for next to nothing
 

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I have had a fair amount of P/W loaders in my day and have loaded lots of shells on them.I went to Spolar about 18 years ago and have also run many barrel's full of shell through them.The Spolar has new style dies which eliminate the need ,for a Mec supersizer.Also there are new upgrades with the Spolar,that you will get with a brand new unit.The Spolar hydro stops at every 180 degree cycle and gives you an audible cycle sound when doing so,the P/W auto drive does not,you have to keep watch on what you are doing.For what your sons are shooting I would go with the Spolar,the cycle rate is about 5.5-6 seconds up and down?There is pretty much a wait for certain loaders these days,but the money choice is of course a consideration?
 

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I have both the P.W 800 plus and the Spolar and a P.W. Patriot, the Patriot is by far the best machine due to the fact
that it is case activated, in both brands of machines I do use the Mec Supersizer and it does make seating a lot easier
To me it all has to do with what you are accustomed to. I have used the P/W machines since the 70.s. I have had 2 Spolars and the one I have now is in the 2500 range. To me either of these machines are the best available but I do believe that one should try one from a friend to decide. That Patriot with the electric drive is what I am going to try next.
I just enjoy reloading and have been doing it since the late 60's. Try both machines before you purchase.

Mac
 

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I have had both . I am down to the spolar . Better customer service . But maybe the guy that didn't want to answer questions at Ponswarren is no longer there .
That must have a while back. They have two people that answer questions now. People would prefer the government give them free cash. I know the people there very well
Steve
 

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I would go with the Spolar press. A friend has a PW 800 and while he likes the press he complains about periodic adjustment issues. I have a Spolar with a PW electric drive. My friend has a Spolar with the hydro drive. Both run great and you can't go wrong with either drive system. You can also save money by using the PW elec motor with no loss in performance.
 

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Much like the others, I ran both machines for a while. Both make great shells. However, I always migrated to the Spolar. It just worked better for me and similar in function to my other brand presses. Plus, I disliked the weak primer system/slide on the PW. I have since sold the PW after breaking my last primer slide.

If you are patient and diligent in your hunt, you can pick up a used Spolar and save some cash to go toward components.
 

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Since this topic came up (Spolar vs PW), I have some questions about the Spolar and PW 800 plus and maybe the PW Patriot. There are features on the MEC9000 that I appreciate and am wondering if the Spolar or either of the PM machines have them or something similar.

The features are:
1. Hull controlled drop for powder and shot
2. The bottle tip back feature for changing powder or shot

I don't see Hull controlled drop mentioned on the website for the Spolar. I do see it mentioned for the Patriot but not the 800 Plus. I read some of the 800 plus manual and it talks about a manual on off feature that you have to sequence at the right time during startup and shut down. Hull controlled drop seems like a good idea so wondering if the Spolar has it and why it isn't on the 800 plus.

Same for the bottle tip back. This seems like a good idea. If PW's and Spolar don't have it, how do you change powder or shot bottles without dumping material or leaving a charge in the bushings?
 

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The P/W 800+ will do everything the Spolar will do at a significant price differential. If you are a responsible money manager of your hard earned dollars, invest the difference at, say, 7% and see what you will have over a 15-20 year period. If that doesn't have any appeal to you, then just blow the bucks and get a Spolar for the warm fuzzy feeling they all provide. Good luck with your decision.
 

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Since this topic came up (Spolar vs PW), I have some questions about the Spolar and PW 800 plus and maybe the PW Patriot. There are features on the MEC9000 that I appreciate and am wondering if the Spolar or either of the PM machines have them or something similar.

The features are:
1. Hull controlled drop for powder and shot
2. The bottle tip back feature for changing powder or shot

I don't see Hull controlled drop mentioned on the website for the Spolar. I do see it mentioned for the Patriot but not the 800 Plus. I read some of the 800 plus manual and it talks about a manual on off feature that you have to sequence at the right time during startup and shut down. Hull controlled drop seems like a good idea so wondering if the Spolar has it and why it isn't on the 800 plus.

Same for the bottle tip back. This seems like a good idea. If PW's and Spolar don't have it, how do you change powder or shot bottles without dumping material or leaving a charge in the bushings?
With the Spolar you need to cycle the powder and shot bottles on and off as you begin and end your reloading session. That was hard for me to get used to and still gets me on occasion. With the bottles in the off position you have access to both the shot and powder bushings simply by cycling the machine. To empty the bottles there is a third position you move the bottle to that puts it over a drain tube. Here too you need to cycle the machine so as you move the bottle over the bar when the bushing is not under the bottle otherwise you will fill it up.
It isn't hard at all to put shot and powder on the reloading bench with a Spolar. The more I use it the less frequent that becomes. As with anything new there is a learning curve until it becomes automatic.
 
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