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Old 08-07-2017, 06:38 PM
jkmo jkmo is offline
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Default Dillon 550 B problem

Hi all,

My Dillon 550 B is sending the spent primers everywhere but the little bin to catch them. Not a huge probem... but. Probably have reloaded 6000+ on it so far.

Amyone see this before? any solution?

Thanks for the help
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Old 08-07-2017, 07:07 PM
Johnrh Johnrh is offline
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Yup and it's because the tray to catch them isn't opening up on the down stroke. That can be caused by two things. The moving tray is too tight and binding so open that up some. Or the tray isn't moving because the pin holding the tray to the non moving piece is stopping it from opening. Try taking that pin out and put a smaller pin of anything, I've use a small nail and bent it slightly to keep in in place. It can be a pain sometimes.

Now if the tray is opening up I have no idea. Maybe the tray isn't falling against the piston?
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Old 08-08-2017, 05:47 AM
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Clean out the hole in the shell plate / ram base plate where the spent primer is ejected through. I have to clean that hole and the primer feed mechanism about every 2,000 rounds on my two Dillon 450 / 550 presses.

I suppose this wouldn't be a problem if I had surgically clean brass, but 2 hours in the tumbler with corn cob media, and the brass is ready to reload.
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Old 08-08-2017, 07:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnrh View Post
Yup and it's because the tray to catch them isn't opening up on the down stroke. That can be caused by two things. The moving tray is too tight and binding so open that up some. Or the tray isn't moving because the pin holding the tray to the non moving piece is stopping it from opening. Try taking that pin out and put a smaller pin of anything, I've use a small nail and bent it slightly to keep in in place. It can be a pain sometimes.

Now if the tray is opening up I have no idea. Maybe the tray isn't falling against the piston?
This ^^^^^^^^^

I replaced the stock OEM pin with a pin I cut from a baby's diaper pin.
A baby's diaper pin is the perfect diameter and length.
Cut off the straight part, put it in and bend the ends over so it can't fall out. Works perfectly.

Plus, go to Walmart and buy a small 1/2 inch little round magnet and put it on the side of the little primer chute that opens and closes as you work the ram.

That magnet will add weight to that little chute and basically ensure that it opens properly to catch the spent primers.

When I added that little magnet, it stopped my primer problem.


.

Last edited by JBnTx; 08-08-2017 at 07:48 AM.
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Old 08-08-2017, 08:25 AM
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In your Dillon tool kit.

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Old 08-08-2017, 09:24 AM
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The primer chute on my 550 is currently fastened with a small cotter pin. That was the orignal configuration. I have intermittent issues with spent primers on the floor. I am going to try the two basic actions recommended here:
- replace cotter pin with nail or diaper pin
- add magnet to chute

I'm glad that I saw this thread.

Last edited by andyo5; 08-08-2017 at 09:25 AM.
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Old 08-08-2017, 10:49 AM
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I've replaced my original container with primer chute from ebay. Attached clear tubing (one that came with chute was useless - too short) and now I have all spent primers going into soda bottle. Haven't had to chase a single spent primer since.
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Old 08-08-2017, 12:01 PM
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I've replaced the cotter pin with a short piece of 1/16" brass rod threaded 0-80 on each end with a nut and washer on each end. Been there for years and working.
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Old 08-08-2017, 03:06 PM
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For future reference, the other two Dillon 550B primer issues that show up with higher round counts are:

1) Primers not fully seating.

When this happens it usually means one of the two small hex head screws that hold the shell feed and primer chute assembly to the bottom of the plate on the ram have come loose and backed out. The plate then stops it's downward motion too soon to allow the primer to fully seat.

That one drove me nuts until I figured out what was going on. Blue Locktite is your friend with that one.

2) Primers not being pushed all the way out of the case.

With Dillon presses and dedicated tool heads, you can often load tens of thousands of rounds without ever removing dies from the tool head, which means you miss little things that are otherwise obvious - like the end of the de-capping pin slowly unscrewing until it just starts to bottom out on the base of the case.

Since it feels funny operating the press, you'll catch it and you'll adjust the pin assembly upwards, and duly note that the de-capping pin now has the proper projection below the die.

It'll work great to de-cap about 95% of the cases, but the other 5% won't drop free. The pin protrusion still looks good and you'll miss the problem unless you press up on it with your finger and note that it rises an 1/8" or so.

You'll only have to do that once before the light bulb comes on.
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Old 08-08-2017, 04:38 PM
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Ran a brush up the spent primer chute, a few tumbled out and all is right again.

Thanks!
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Old 08-09-2017, 06:38 AM
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About 6 years ago, I had the same problem with my 1984 450 Dillon. Turns out the little flap on the primer shoot had an elongated hole for the cotter key. I had loaded over 300,000 rounds! As usual, Dillon sent a replacement for free!

Ivan
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Old 08-09-2017, 07:09 PM
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My catch chute would (will) bind up after a while, from filth and eventually from the pin bending and causing it to bind up.

Straighten the pin or replacing with a thin nail. Keep it clean. What I found helped most was to attach a small and powerful magnet to the side of it to be attracted to the primer holder on the down stroke to pull it down. I used a small piece of a broken hard drive magnet.

Now mine "rarely" fails to open (maybe once every hundred rounds).
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Old 08-10-2017, 11:56 AM
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An inherent problem with a Dillon? Say it ain't so...
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Old 08-10-2017, 12:25 PM
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Quote:
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An inherent problem with a Dillon? Say it ain't so...
Yeah...let's talk about problems with other systems with far lower round counts before I switched to a Dillon.
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Old 08-11-2017, 02:37 PM
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I had the same problem with my Dillon 550 (predecessor to the 550B) which I've had since sometime in the 80's. I have done everything as noted above by previous posters and still it would spit primers all over. I read some where about a product called the BobChute (it replaces the original catch tray) and thought I'd give it a try and I'm glad I did. Problem solved! I still get an occasional primer that pops out, maybe one or two out of a thousand and for some reason it always seems to fly up out of the press and out. This little item has sure made a difference when I'm reloading. It comes with a long piece of hose that you can route to a jar or wherever. I have mine dump into the trash can because the recycling centers around here won't accept spent primers.



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Old 08-11-2017, 04:17 PM
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In looking at the above photos, the Bob chute replaces the cup (and takes care of flying primers) but you still use the pivoting part so the hinge is a problem at some point. Like I said earlier mine went out around 300,000, that was about 20,000 ago (7 years, I slowed down after the stroke). My press was 28-30 years old at that point and they sent a new part. RCBS has that kind of customer service also, but they usually don't have parts for anything that old! The 450/550/550b is a very proven design! (Just try getting parts for a 07 or 007 Projector Hornady press. Heck, they were out for and early L-N-L AP, 4 years ago!)

Ivan
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Old 08-11-2017, 05:04 PM
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I only have about 200,000 rounds reloaded on mine and the pivot holes on the chute are still good. I did experience a new problem with primer seating about a year ago when it wouldn't seat a primer. I looked for all the usual suspects and then I noticed the handle was going too far forward. The cast piece that the handle, link arms and ram attach to was cracked. Dillon sent a new one that day and I was back up and running later that week. The new part was built with heavier reinforcements and sides. Maybe that and the lubrication holes for the shafts was the difference between a 550 and a 550B. You have to love their "No BS Warranty".

Last edited by BARgunner; 08-11-2017 at 06:23 PM.
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Old 08-11-2017, 05:29 PM
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I guess I've go something to look forward to, my 550B only has about 120,000 rounds thru it, but that took 28 years come Christmas. at my age I may never get to 300,000 for the failure unless I quit doing everything except shooting and reloading.
I see in the latest Blue Press that they now have a RL 550C, I noticed a different arrangement on the powder measure, are there other changes?
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