1911Forum banner

1 - 13 of 13 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
48 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I have handloaded for about 25 years, but I have never owned a progressive press. I have loaded a bit on a friends Dillon 550. It is a great machine. I realize that there is probably no better machine out there than the Dillon, BUT (and this is not to start an argument)how well does the Lee Pro 1000 work? For those that have used one extensivily, have there been many problems?
Now I know that it is not a Dillon, but if you don't like it please qualify your reasons. Likewise, if you like it, please expound there also. I will probably load 3-4K rounds per year.

Thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22 Posts
I helped a fellow shooter set up his Lee progressive and I can tell you that it is a complete piece of junk. Lots of cheap, flimsy parts. Once we got it set up, it consistently jammed every 5-10 rounds. Save yourself the headaches and disappointment and buy a Dillon (any Dillon). Great machines and more importantly, great customer service (basically, free replacement parts for life). In 13 years of hard use, I've sent my Dillon 550 back to the factory twice for rebuild. It has come back each time better than new and I have never been charged a dime. How can you beat that?
Bill Go
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
913 Posts
Don't buy the Lee! I did. You get what you pay for. Parts are loose, primers get crunched or don't seat. Not a smooth running machine. That said, I can now "crank out" 75-100 ounds an hour, one at a time.....

Wish I'd spent the money on a dillon.

If you are not convinced, I'll sell you my Lee.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
347 Posts
Although I don't own a Lee press,Let me tell you about my Dillon 550-b, I've owned this machine about 1 year, in that year I've loaded about 4-5000 rnds on it, (I'm loading 10 calibers on it) NOTHING on this machine has broke, it seats ALL the primers ALL the time,(large or small) so far none of the moving parts has worn out, or even shown much wear, Sure, they cost more than Lee, but they work the first time every time,they don't break, if they do Dillon will send you the parts to fix it....FREE, This press, (550-b)is probably the last press I'll ever have to buy, it'll load anything I want, short of .50bmg NO lee progressive press made can say that, the 550-b will do 120 diffrent calibers the lee pro 1000 26... I guess you get what you pay for, if you want a cheap press that will need debugged constantly, get the Lee, if you want something that works right first time out of the box get the dillon, even if you have to delay your purchase and save up a little extra, get the dillon!!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
I started out reloading with a Lee single stage press 2 years ago and got REALLY tired of single stage work. It taught me a lot about reloading but when I decided to move up to a progressive i started to get the Lee 1000 and asked about it from others on rec.guns most of the responses were "it's ok" to "it works most of the time" to "it's crap" But everyone who spoke on the Dillon had nothing but good stuff to say.
I found an XL650 used on AuctionArms and got it. It's overkill for speed and accuracy.
It loads faster than I can keep up with and the ammo it produces is far more accurate than I was able to make on the Lee single stage press. the only problems I've had were due to me learning how to work it. I was amazed at how this thing is built, It's like a car engine with the close tolerances and the smoothness with which it operates.
GO DILLON!!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
731 Posts
I've never used a Lee press, but one of my shooting buddies has the Pro 1000. Let me say, it is a complete piece of junk. I wouldn't use it as a boat anchor. He has had sooooooooooo many problems. Parts break constantly. The thing has to be readjusted every 50-75 rounds.

Seriously, spend the extra money and buy a Dillon--you will in the end, anyway.

Billy Ray
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,005 Posts
Well, good grief! I wasn't even in the market right now for a progressive loader, and I'm ready to go buy a Dillon!
You all make it sound nice.

And you make the Lee sound like a real bad buy.

(I just bought some Lee dies. I haven't used them yet. I'm assuming they will work, but you can tell by looking at them that they are not the same quality as my old RCBS dies.)


------------------
If God didn't want us to own guns, why did He make the 1911?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
975 Posts
I have a Dillon 550 a Dillon 650 and a Dillon 1050. but if I only had one press it would be a 650.

The 550 is way too slow and the 1050 takes just shy of forever to change claibers and primer size. So I just use it for .45s

I really like the 650 with the case feeder.

Lee presses are not in the same class at all.
So don't waste your money.
RCBS and Hornady progressives are better made than the Lee press but still the best use for them also is a boat anchor.

mike



------------------
Mike Benedict
Custom Kydex Holsters

Talon Tactical Holsters
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
731 Posts
jpwright,

The Lee Factory Crimp die is the best in the world, bar-none. Everything else Lee makes should be chunked in the circular file.

Billy Ray
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
177 Posts
OK I'll throw in a positive for the Pro 1000. I have been using a Pro 1000 for 3 or 4 months now. So far I have put out approx 2000 rounds with it, and I haven't had any real problems.

I had one primer denonate (that'll wake you up!)and one primer was pressed in backwards. That's about it. Like most things in this world, you get what you pay for. It's not built like a tank, and it's not idiot proof. You need to pay attention to what is going on.

I have no doubt that in comparison to a Dillon or a RCBS or most presses for that matter, it's an inferior product. It's not engineered to exacting standards or with the best materials.

Although I haven't had the oppertunity to try another press, I haven't heard anything bad about Dillon ever. Search the archives and my guess is you won't find a single negative comment from a Dillon user. I hope to change to a Dillon later this year myself for that reason.

The Pro 1000 allowed me to get started cranking out 100 rounds an hour with very little investment. I picked up my Pro 1000 on ebay for next to nothing and I'm sure I would get that much for it should I try to sell it. It proably doesn't funtcion as well as a Dillon, but I couldn't justify nor afford the cash for a Dillon when I started reloading. The Pro 1000 was a small investment for me to see how reloading was going to work for me. For me, the Pro 1000 was worth the investment.

If I had to start over again, I probably would go with the turret press. Although not progressive, it seems to be built better than the Pro 1000 and it's probably marginally slower than a progressive.

Just my 2 cents. I know... I know. That's what some folks think the Pro 1000 is worth.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
36 Posts
I have 3 progressive presses right now. 2 RCBS "greenmachines" one set up for .38 wadcutter, and one set up for .357 round nose flat point. The third press is a Lee Loadmaster. I bought it when the guy who was going to sell me his VERY VERY VERY used "star" progressive was taking too darn long. I thought that for the little it costs, if I use it for only a few months, it would be worth it. Mind you, I expected it to be trash, I only wanted to use it while I waited to buy a REALLY goo loader. (I know dillons are good, but compared to a star, just about any press is a toy). Well, I got this Lee, and was rather impressed. Yes, there is a fair amount of "cheap" stuff on it. I did make a few minor mods, the case feed was not what it should be, so I use a plastic "pull tie" for a tensioner, replacing the original short srews with longer 6-42 socket head cap screws. Now the case feed works like a champ. I also added a small "guide rail" to keep brass from falling off prior to being fed into the shell plate. The only other thing I have don is to use a cut plastic pull tie to make sure the last 2 primers feed. I also use silicon spary to lube some of the parts, and armor all to lube the primer trough. This has stopped many problems. I also have loaded well in excess of 15K rounds on this press. I can load 500 rounds per hour VERY easily. (I can go as high as 800, but that is when I seem to get a problem with crunching a primer feed part). I like this press so much, I am getting 2 more, one for 45 colt, and one for 41 mag. And since I shoot 2 45 acp loads, I may get one more for my second acp load, or I may just keep changing bullet depth and powder charge like I do now. If you are not "sensitive" to tools and machines, you may want to get a more "idiot proof" loader. But if you can run equipment well, this press will work well for you.
Tom
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
95 Posts
I, too, feel compelled to defend the Pro 1000. I have 2, one set up exclusively for .40 and another that I switch calibers. Neither press has given me any trouble that I haven't caused, and the .40 press has a multi-tube bullet feeder on it. That press has at least 15-20K rounds through it with a grand total of one broken part which was my own fault, and it has only been completely stripped for cleaning once. The Lee has the option of using a case feeder and bullet feeder, substantially increasing the production capability. The auto-index all but assures no double charges. I probably have less money in my two presses and their accouterments than it would cost for one Dillon 550. My father and brother also use Pro 100s with no problems whatsoever. I have, however, seen some problems with Dillons-squib loads. One guy was shooting his 686 at the range I used to work at-filled the barrel with bullets and didn't realize it until he couldn't open the cylinder-and I witnessed this (don't ask me how he didn't realize that something was terribly wrong!). We pulled the bullets from the remaining rounds in his box-no powder in any of them. Theory at the time was a static electricity charge created a powder bridge and prevented powder from falling. Could it happen with any press ? Probably, especially if the person loading isn't paying attention as this guy obviously wasn't. I've also seen numerous flipped primers from Dillon loaders.

I am not knocking Dillon-two good friends of mine swear by their 550s, and we constantly spar (jokingly, of course!) over which is better. For me, the Lee has been fantastic.

All of you guys out there who want to get rid of your Lee presses I'd be happy to give them all a good home!

Good luck with whatever you decide!

Tom
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
I had a Pro1000 till I had several rounds with no powder. My wife had a squib load with the bullet stuck in the barrel and I ran up to the firing line just as she was about finished with her "tap/rack/bang" procedure. Got there just in time. Several shooters asked if I was using a Lee and when I said yes, they said they had had the same problem. Never used it again. Found a deal from a new dealer on a Dillon 550. Cheap at twice the price!
 
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
Top