Progressive Press: Hornady LnL AP vs. Dillon 550C

Rathmatik

Member
Jun 25, 2019
106
28
Dallas
Let us know how works our. I’m interested in Whidden toolheads but after studying not sure if it would help. Dillon heads float anyway so I’ve heard conflicting reports. John Widden makes his precision ammo on a 650 press. His dies are top notch I understand haven’t personally used them but would if I needed any dies. I am interested in toolheads if you try one let us know results compared to Dillon head
Thanks good luck
Roc1
Will do! Yes, I think the fact that Dillon toolheads float is part of the reason why we would use the non-floating Whidden toolheads. Since my dies are floating and the Dillon toolheads float, it could be too much movement to allow for precise alignment. So from my understanding, it's better to have either floating dies and a non-floating toolhead (eg. more rigid), or non-floating dies and a floating toolhead.
 

Rocky Carey

Member
Jun 14, 2017
67
18
Lubbock
I agree with you to much of a good thing can be bad. Be nice to load as good of rounds on Dillon as my Forster or Redding do. It’s close now but could be little better. Anxious for updates may try it out if successful.
Thanks
Roc1
 

ed308

Well-Known
Dec 31, 2013
1,755
83
DFW
Until recently, I loaded precision 308 and 6.5 CM on a RockChucker and used a 550 for everything else. I have now started loading everything on the 550, and can change calibers in about 3 minutes without any fine tuning or adjusting of the dies. Pull 2 pins, slide tool head out, change shell plate, slide new tool head in, and re-insert 2 pins. As long as you aren’t changing primer sizes, you can do it almost as fast as reading the above steps. I even load 338 Lapua on the 550, and while I’m still dialing my loads in, they’re pretty damn precise. I don’t use the auto powder drop for my precision loads, I use an RCBS powder dropper and powder trickler on the side, weigh each charge separately, and then drop it in the case.
I'm using a similar setup with my 550. I deprime and size the brass on my 550 in separate steps. I then run the case through the 550 for a final step. I use an Autothrow/Autotrickler system to drop and trickle the powder to a A&D Fx120 scale. The powder is dropped through a Area 419 funnel. (For some calibers, I also using the Whidden floating tool heads. But not sure whether they make much of a difference.) With each pull of the handle, I'm priming the brass, dropping the powder, seating the bullet then crimping if a crimp is needed. It's so much faster than pulling the handle an extra 290+ times. And my loads are just as accurate as any single stage press I've used.
 
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ed308

Well-Known
Dec 31, 2013
1,755
83
DFW
If anyone questions the quality of ammo produced on the 550 compared to a single stage press, take a look at the August 2020 Dillon Magazine. There's an article on precision rifle loading on a Dillon 550C. It's part 2 of the series. I'm using the powder trickle system as described in the article. Now to find my July magazine to read part 1. Somehow I missed it.
 
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Rathmatik

Member
Jun 25, 2019
106
28
Dallas
If anyone questions the quality of ammo produced on the 550 compared to a single stage press, take a look at the August 2020 Dillon Magazine. There's an article on precision rifle loading on a Dillon 550C. It's part 2 of the series. I'm using the powder trickle system as described in the article. Now to find my July magazine to read part 1. Somehow I missed it.
Did you get that in the mail or digitally? I don't see an August 2020 edition on their site yet (or even June/July).
 

Rathmatik

Member
Jun 25, 2019
106
28
Dallas
Update: I got everything set up with my 550C for 9mm, and it's working incredibly well! I made a quick 20 rounds and tested those with good success. I've since made about a total of 250 rounds, and it is SO much better and faster than loading on the RC. It actually makes the reloading process a lot more fun. Definitely glad I went with this one.

One thing I have noticed is the low primer detection bar (the plastic stick you put in the detector) doesn't really go down on its own and I have to push it down to get it back on top of the primers to know where I'm at. Does anyone else have this issue and have a good solution?

I'll probably be getting the toolhead, conversion kit, etc. for 6.5 Creedmoor in a few more weeks so I can test with that as well.
 

toddnjoyce

TGT Addict
Sep 27, 2017
8,397
113
Boerne
Update: I got everything set up with my 550C for 9mm, and it's working incredibly well! I made a quick 20 rounds and tested those with good success. I've since made about a total of 250 rounds, and it is SO much better and faster than loading on the RC. It actually makes the reloading process a lot more fun. Definitely glad I went with this one.

One thing I have noticed is the low primer detection bar (the plastic stick you put in the detector) doesn't really go down on its own and I have to push it down to get it back on top of the primers to know where I'm at. Does anyone else have this issue and have a good solution?

I'll probably be getting the toolhead, conversion kit, etc. for 6.5 Creedmoor in a few more weeks so I can test with that as well.
Are you setup like this?

5f99b8a81d755ce800e93dac42e9e128.jpg
 

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