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Powder Measure for Non-Climate Controlled Reloading

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  • Powder Measure for Non-Climate Controlled Reloading

    The short:
    My outdoor kept powder measure started getting very inaccurate after being stored in an outdoor shed and I think I'll need a new one. Does anyone have suggestions? I'm thinking it'd have to be stainless to be durable.

    The long:
    I keep most of my reloading equipment indoors, but my press and powder measure are mounted outdoors. The coax press looks as good as the day I bought it, but my powder measure was covered in rust on the side and the o-ring on the side was cracking after a year and a half. The measure is hornady's lock n load: https://www.midwayusa.com/product/29...powder-measure

    It's now said to be "steel", but I could have sworn it said stainless when I bought it. I wiped oil on the sides and that somehow (cracked o-rings?) started gumming up the powder. This is no good since I don't want oil soaked powder, rust in my loads instead of perfectly measured powder weights, and inaccuracy from the measure that requires lots of trickling and often dumping off of an over pour to trickle up.

  • #2
    I would clean it up, dry it and replace the O ring. You don't want oil in the powder measure.
    Is there rust inside the measure? If so, clean it out.
    If the measure has a plastic hopper, remove it and completely disassemble the measure.
    Soak it in acetone for a few hours to completely get the oil out.
    If you are going to put any lubricant in it, graphite powder.
    Or you can run a lot of powder through it, the graphite in the powder will lube. It takes a while.
    You might be able to save it.
    You did not say what powder measure you have only it is made out of steel.
    Hope this helps.

    "The United States Marine Corps is a drug and I am a recovering addict."

    "American by birthright… U.S. MARINE by the Grace of GOD!"

    "And on the 8th day God created Marines and like fish, we came from the sea!"

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    • #3
      with those conditions, I'd think either a low end all-plastic measure or bring it in when you bring your powder in.

      I have a Lyman 55 that is 45 years old, mostly kept in garage or work shop, both climate controlled....never done any maintaince or cleaning...no rust. Most of the present day METAL measures seem to be an alloy or aluminum.

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      • #4
        Desert marine, I agree with your approach and it's definitely salvageable, but cleaning it off won't correct the overall problem that it will continue to rust. I was really hoping to find a stainless measure that will survive the conditions.

        Bear,
        Thanks for the reply. I'm starting to think I could make one easily since it's simply volumetric. If I'm going to that trouble then I could make an auto trickler with a microcontroller to to manage it, but my electronic scale (RCBS) is no where near as accurate as their mechanical balance.

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        • #5
          For one thing, oil will destroy rubber o-rings. if you replace them, use neoprene. NAPA auto will have them and a decent hardware store may also. Clean up the metal parts to the very Nth degree and coat it with lacquer. You may need to do that a couple times in the next decade, but as long as the lacquer isn't scratched, it will outlast you.
          -Remote locations are cheap insurance.
          -There are two kinds of ships: Submarines and targets

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          • #6
            Almost every power measure I buy used has some rusting on it somewhere due to storage/use in a garage or storage building with either no or marginal climate control.. I disassemble the measure, and as most rusting is on the cylinder, use 00 or 000 steel wool to remove light surface rust. Then clean the cylinder and stem with acetone, lacquer thinner, or even brake cleaner, and reassemble. Lube with the mentioned dry graphite. If the rusting is heavy enough to cause pitting or roughness, not much you can do aside from replacing the cylinder.
            As for a replacement measure, you will get slammed for using "cheap Lee crap", but the Perfect and the Deluxe Perfect measures are both non steel. The Perfect is "engineered polymer" aka plastic, while the Deluxe Perfect has a cast aluminum body and a brass cylinder. Both are actually quite accurate, in my experience, and work much better with stick powders than the RCBS Unifow. Match grade? Not even close. Accurate enough for almost every other purpose? Yep.
            "The fact that guns can kill another human being is the whole point. That\'s why they are so darn good at deterring violent criminals". Ann Coulter

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            • #7
              Maybe this is what you are looking for. It is made of. Not cheap.
              Look at all their measures and maybe call them and talk about what they are made off.
              These are some of the best in the market.

              http://harrellsprec.com/index.php/pr...culver-measure
              "The United States Marine Corps is a drug and I am a recovering addict."

              "American by birthright… U.S. MARINE by the Grace of GOD!"

              "And on the 8th day God created Marines and like fish, we came from the sea!"

              Comment


              • #8
                This is the measure.

                "The United States Marine Corps is a drug and I am a recovering addict."

                "American by birthright… U.S. MARINE by the Grace of GOD!"

                "And on the 8th day God created Marines and like fish, we came from the sea!"

                Comment


                • #9
                  My Harrells is brass and stainless Both the Harrells and my Lee Classic /Deluxe lives in a climate controlled bedroom. The Classic has a cast iron body and a brass drum or the plastic drums. The Deluxe has a cast zinc body. Of these PMs the Classic/Deluxe are by far the most capable of a wide range of powder types thus the most used and certainly by far the least expensive. If I were you I mount what ever PM you choose to a board that is portable to avoid the elements.
                  Good judgement comes from experience,
                  and a lot of that comes from bad judgement.
                  Mark Twain

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                  • #10
                    I would clean it up and shoot it with Duracoat. I can be laid down very thin with an airbrush so it will not impede the operation and will hold up to the elements.
                    Friends don't let friends shoot factory ammo.

                    Continuous effort - not strength or intelligence - is the key to unlocking our potential.
                    -Winston Churchill

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                    • #11
                      Nice measure there, Desert.

                      Not to pricey if you consider it will last your lifetime. Mine cost mw about a buck a year. Would buy the Harrell today if I thought I could amortise the $ cost to $4 per year.

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                      • #12
                        Bear, I was thinking the same thing.
                        Price is what has kept me from buying a Harrell.
                        "The United States Marine Corps is a drug and I am a recovering addict."

                        "American by birthright… U.S. MARINE by the Grace of GOD!"

                        "And on the 8th day God created Marines and like fish, we came from the sea!"

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          My 55 works good enough. I started with Lee 'wack-a-mole (best thing they ever made). then went with C-H press and Lyman dies After 6 years gave that stuff all away and went with RCBS, never a problem. Ohaus beam balance scale.

                          If I was to start over...sure I'd get the same brands.

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                          • #14
                            I like my 3 55's. learned how to use the correctly and they work great.
                            But they are always indoors.
                            "The United States Marine Corps is a drug and I am a recovering addict."

                            "American by birthright… U.S. MARINE by the Grace of GOD!"

                            "And on the 8th day God created Marines and like fish, we came from the sea!"

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Yep, love my cast iron 55, but no outdoor loading
                              ​​​​​​

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