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HORNADY Lock & load Progressive Ammo factory

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by mjbskwim, Apr 5, 2012.

  1. mjbskwim

    mjbskwim Salmon,Idaho Well-Known Member

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    OK Back a while,I bought a RCBS Rock Chucker.Loaded 223 single stage and ,other than the dies sucking,it loaded them fairly fast.
    Size,deprime,prime by hand,leave upside down till I load 100 with powder,then seat those with bullets.
    Worked good.
    Then I had some extra money and bought the Hornady kit.Then I bought the case feed.And all the plates for the calibers I will load for.
    First run,the $450 case feeder didn't efficiently feed cases or push the 223 case into the plate.Most fell over.
    Redding size-de-prime die worked perfect.
    Then the auto primer:banghead::banghead::banghead:
    I cleaned that thing out about 20 times the first run.Lost about 100 primers on the floor,taking it apart to clean.Had the powder charge at the next station so I couldn't check to make sure the case was,in fact primed.
    Had powder and primers everywhere.Great combo!

    So a couple days ago,I cleaned it up again.Made sure everything was adjusted correctly.The guide wires were out far enough to slide the primer slide.Primer tube was clean in side also.
    Then today I moved the powder measure over one station so I could check the cases for primers.

    About every 15 missed a primer.More powder on the floor.
    Primer slide gets jammed.More live primers on the floor.

    Oh,the Redding seating die worked as well as the machine let it.There was no consistency on the OAL.Some bullets seated deeper than others.
    The die was tight into the turret,so it had to be the machine not the die.

    Well this was better than last time.I was trying for the 1000 rounds an hour and got 200 in about 4.
    Today I did 200+- in about 3 hours.
    But the machine is clean and tidy!

    I was going to send a nasty e mail to Hornady,but I just decided to send a link to this thread.That way they can read my complaints and see that they were voiced on the internet,on a reloading forum.

    I wasn't real happy having problems with my $40 RCBS dies,you can imagine how I feel after around $1000 in this POS
  2. 19 Adam

    19 Adam rural Clackamas County, Oregon Active Member

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    Thanks for the info.

    I am looking to buy a progressive press and this first hand info helps narrow my search. It shows you can not trust the slick brochures that the manufacturers put out.
  3. mjbskwim

    mjbskwim Salmon,Idaho Well-Known Member

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    I spent a lot of time trying to see what I was doing wrong.I wish I had a Hornady owner around here to take a look,cause I can see that unless they gave me my money back,this will sit here until I sell it at a loss.

    I'll go Dillon,like I should have
  4. Dunerunner

    Dunerunner You'll Never Know Well-Known Member

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    I too have been considering a Progressive press and it looks now like the Dillon will get my money! Thanks for saving me the time, money and frustration of fighting a machine that obviously has problems.
  5. blitz

    blitz beaverton Active Member 2015 Volunteer

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    i have the hornady lnl press and have not had the best of luck with it as well.
    drive hub cracked.
    pawls snap 3 times
    case retainer spring kink up countless times
    primer slide spring wear out once
    and so on

    i have only ran about 2-3k rounds through it so that seems a little excessive. it also came without the whole assembly for small primers (slide, tube and pickup rod) the good thing is that hornady always sent out my parts immediately without any questions asked and i would receive them about 5 days after sending them the email.
    i always prime the cases without any dies in the press so i can check them all before i load them up, every time i tried to do it how it is "supposed" to be done the primer slide would stick due to powder getting in it and not just every once in a while but it seemed like every other round.
    i have had better luck with hornady dies than any other so now i only own hornady dies (besides crimp dies) so that is a plus for there product i guess.

    whenever i decide to get a new press i will definately be going with something else
  6. BANE

    BANE Battle Ground WA. Well-Known Member

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    That's why i bought a Dillon XL650. i've loaded countless rds. 9mm, 40s&w, 44mag, 45acp, 223/556, 308, and 300wm. and others with no problems.. i have a case feed to with no issue's..
  7. chowser2

    chowser2 seaside Member

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    I have a hornady lock n load press and when I first started I had some of the same problems. after a little use and tweaking it runs almost perfectly. If you take a little more time and don't rush you can feel if the primer seats or not. at the top of the up stroke slow down if you feel no resistance there is no primer.

    I have also broken a few parts on my press, however all I have ever had to do was send hornady an email or call them and they send me a new part. no questions ask. I didn't even need to send in the broken pieces.

    I think you should call them and at least give them a chance to make it right, before you give up on them. They have tech people to walk you through each step to make sure everything is working the way it should.

    I am 100% Satisfied with there customer service.

    I have had some problems with the shell plates, some of the station holes don't seem to want to eject the cases and get stuck from time to time. (I have not yet called hornady on this problem)
  8. motoman98

    motoman98 Gresham, OR Active Member

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    I have Dillon, and have used their live help more than once. They will walk you thru all the steps till you got it right. No BS
  9. MarkAd

    MarkAd Port Orchard Well-Known Member

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  10. deadshot2

    deadshot2 NW Quadrant WA State Well-Known Member

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    I too passed on the "newcomers" and bought a tried and true Dillon XL650. My press is over the 100k mark and have had one spring break as well as the discharge chute which I flubbered up myself. Had a spare spring in my "kit" and some J-B weld fixed my boo-boo. The next time I called Dillon for some more items I told them of my failures, not as a complaint but as praise for the durability. They sent me free replacements and wouldn't even accept my offer to pay for the part I broke myself.
  11. IheartGUNS

    IheartGUNS WaCo Well-Known Member

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    I have the hornady lnl and love it. I can load about 2-300 rounds of 45acp in an hour and that's without a case feeder or bullet feeder. I don't know if that's good or bad but I'm happy with that. Sorry that you have problems with your lnl but you should give hornady a call so they can make it right.
  12. speedtriple

    speedtriple Vancouver, Washington, United States Member

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    I have the Hornady. I have fantastic results with it, but it did take some time to figure out what adjustments are needed to make it sing. I have never run a Dillon, but I imagine they are as wonderful as everyone says they are. The reason I bought the Hornady is that I came across an in store special of $340 for the progressive press, and just could not pass it up. I was making .45 ACP two hours later.

    If you are having problems with the pawls that turn the shell plate... I find that cap screw that holds the shell plate down should be a heavy finger tight. Using a wrench seems to increase the force to rotate it quite a lot. Every 50 rounds or so, I reach in and make sure it is snug. Make sure you are not pushing the handle back to seat a primer when checking the cap screw, as that puts pressure up on the shell plate and it will seem tight. I also use a drop or two of light oil on the bottom side of the shell plate so the sliding surfaces that are metal to metal don't get pissed at each other. Don't over do that.

    Auto prime. Yes, you want to make sure it is clean. But it is worth taking a few moments to clean up the part that feeds the primer towards the die plate. With a fine file, knock off any burrs or high spots. I lube it with the Hornady dry lube, and make sure it has dried before putting into operation. That helps a lot. If you did have a earlier problem with the drive pawls, the rotation of the plate might be off just enough to hang up the primer hole centering over the spud that pushes the primer up. There are adjusters to make sure the rotation is "just right" and this is worth checking every 5K rounds or so. You will also learn to feel the primer going into the case. I know EVERY time a primer does not feed because there is no resistance at the end of the down/back stroke.

    Keep a can of canned air on your bench. If you get a little powder starting to build up on the moving parts of the press, blow it off. Most of the powder that ends up on the shell plate is stuff the jumps out of the shells one little grain at a time as the shell plate rotates then snaps into position.

    I you ever get down to the Vancouver (Vantucky as people from Portland call us) , I would be happy to show you my tips and tricks. Or if you decide to go Dillon, make me a offer on your Hornady I can't refuse. I would love to have one set up for small primers and one set up for large on the bench.

    As for cases on wanting to eject, I find a soft touch with the handle helps. When nearing the end of the stroke, back off on the speed and force with the handle. As that case hits the raised piece of metal that pushes it out into the tray, it likes a gentle nudge to jump. It you hit the case hard against that metal piece, sometimes it jams against it. You will find the movement of the handle becomes second nature, and you will "feel" the press running normally, as well as "feel" when something is not right

  13. mjbskwim

    mjbskwim Salmon,Idaho Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the responses and the video link.I'll take a look in a bit.
    I'm gunna work with it some more before giving up ,but after spending all the money on all the equipment,I got a little pissed
    10 years ago O would have posted pics after a sledge hammer,lol.That used to get expensive.

    I'm going to try some pistol rounds and see how that goes.Then I'll be on the phone with Hornady

    Thanks again
  14. coyoteman5

    coyoteman5 North south east west Active Member

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    When I reload I resize deprime then use a lee hand primer in a short a mount of time I can prime a hundred rds it's fast and accurate don't have to touch the primers either. Then I throw some powder and bullet in them done. Now I'm not loading 500-1000 rounds more like 100-250 at a time for my .308 or .243.
    Just throwing it out there.
    mjbskwim and (deleted member) like this.
  15. unklekippy

    unklekippy In The Mountains Near Sprague River Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for this thread. In my reloading time, I have found that all manufacturers have issues. Some isolated, others widespread. I have found progressive's to be better for straight walled pistol cses and a single stage for rifle reloading. That doesn't mean that you should cut Hornady any slack on their faulty product, only that they do have a reputation for a fine product and good customer service. If I went through 10,000 .223's a year, I would probably buy a Dillon. As it is, I go though 10,000 .357's and .45ACP's a year and load very little in the realm of rifle rounds. So little, in fact that a single stage covers all of my needs(at this point). I know that my post doesn't give you any help or answers, but it is good to share our experiences with each other, good or bad. In the end, whether you get through the issues with Hornady or go another route, good luck. I can appreciate the headaches of getting these things dialed in. Fortunately, once(or, in a worst-case-scenario, if) they are dialed in you do in fact have an ammo plant that produces quite fast. Again, best of luck and please let us know how it turns out. Kip.
  16. tkdguy

    tkdguy Portland, Oregon Silver Supporter Silver Supporter

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    I have the Dillon 650 xl. In the very beginning, during the assembly period; I was fustrated with it, but the live help from Dillion was excellant. I did get it runnning very well, but it does have an occassion fluk which I have learned to remedy quickly. I do not rush any speed races with it and have slowly put out about 3-4k rounds with very little trouble. I suspect that the hornady lnl will be just as good with fine tuning, but if not, I'd go with the dillion--which is more expensive.
  17. bmgm37

    bmgm37 Coos Bay Active Member

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    First off, to expect 1000 rounds in a hour on the LNL you would have to really be moving on that machine. I can do that on a Dillon 1050 and that is even a push. Every progressive loader has its quirks, there are Dillon forums loaded with problems from users just like there is with the LNL. I went with Dillon cause I got started reloading back when they were the only affordable progressive around. Dillon has pretty much perfected their presses over many years and if I were to start today, I would still got with Dillon.

    I hope you can work out your problems, nothing is more frustrating than getting something new like that and have all kinds of problems.
  18. evltwn

    evltwn Gold Hill Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Dillon. Period.
    mjbskwim and (deleted member) like this.
  19. mjbskwim

    mjbskwim Salmon,Idaho Well-Known Member

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    OK so one of the problems was the Remington primers.They just didn't work as well as the Winchesters.They didn't fall down the tube and seemed to be dirtier
    And I'm seeing that after a 100,maybe 200 rounds,it's time to clean the press.
    They say to assemble the primer feed and forget it.You'll never have to take it apart again.
    I don't know who's world that is in,but not mine.I sprayed it with their cleaner/lube and ,man was it dirty.To look at it it didn't seem dirty,but when I sprayed the assembly,the cleaner turned black,coming out.

    So I did get through a pound of powder today.And a couple hundred bullets.I think I was below 200.300?.I threw the Rem.primers away,kinda lost track of how many I went through.
    I want to keep up the pace but see that I need to stop and clean once in a while.I just thought it would be over 1000 rounds.

    Then the powder charger started scraping against itself
    WTF??? Perfectly machined pieces and the start to jam.(some pieces are not perfectly machined on this press,FYI)
    So even without any vibrations,you need to stop and tighten everything.

    Moral is,when you start your session,clean the press first.Then at 200 rounds,clean again,then again as necessary.
    Didn't try the case feed today.I'll try it when I do handgun calibers.
  20. rumblebee1967

    rumblebee1967 Bellingham Active Member

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    Also be sure to use case lube when doing resizing. I have broken 2 hubs and both times were resizing 9mm with no lube. It takes very little pressure and it happens on the up stroke after the resize is done when you are pulling the casing back out of the resizing die.