I need to vent

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by stev32k, Nov 3, 2012.

  1. stev32k

    stev32k Active Member

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    Re: Hornady LNL Progressive Press bad???????

    I'm not discounting his experience at all. My experience is just not the same.

    The two of us on this forum are not the only ones to have issues with the LNL. I talked to one guy that only loads one round at a time and watches it at every stage. He does not put a case in the shell holder until the finished round is in the bin.

    Yet another guy I talked to has modified his primer feed system shown here: http://www.ar15.com/forums/t_6_42/332497_.html. He was having some of the same problems I do.

    P.S. I'm not ready to give up on the press yet. I have not had enough time to really give it a good work out. When the new pawl arrives I'll try to load several hundred rounds and see how it goes. So far I've only loaded about fifty live rounds the rest have been dummies.
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2012
  2. LDBennett

    LDBennett Active Member

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    stev32k:

    Did you not say there was an alignment problem of the table? RAJBCPA said:

    "After the sixth pawl was broken and I explained that the press could not be indexed properly, they gave me a hard time about replacement parts."

    He had table alignment problems too.

    You say another guy only uses the press as a turret press? What a waste.

    It does seem the the press design has problems. I don't know why they have not been more highlighted here if that is the case (??). I most certainly would not keep it and I would push to get my money back while I still might be able to. Then I'd buy the Dillion RL550b as RAJBCPA did. Auto indexing is not worth having if it is this troublesome. I'll admit that the priming station is the Dillion weak point too but most certainly not to the extent of the Hornady, as you and RAJBCPA reported. I may see one problem with it during a reloading session of over 500 rounds but it is easily adjusted or cleared to fix it.

    Well good luck.

    LDBennett
  3. ozo

    ozo Active Member

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    ....nuff said.

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  4. gun-nut

    gun-nut Member

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    I had a few little problems with mine. I asked questions here and i got the answers. Shooter was a big help, along with a few others. So don't get that upset, just ask and they will help ya out. as i use mine it does get better and smoother.
  5. stev32k

    stev32k Active Member

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    I called Hornady on Monday about the broken pawl and it showed up today (Wednesday). That's pretty prompt service. Now that I'm back in business I'll try to load 100 rounds and see how it goes.
  6. stev32k

    stev32k Active Member

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    Here's an update - I loaded 100 rounds of 9mm and 100 rounds of .40 S&W. It was a painful experience and took about 2.5 hours. The problem is the indexing will not stay adjusted. Get it set just right and about 5 or 6 strokes later it's out of adjustment again. That leads to all kind of other problems like missed primers and crushing a case trying to get into the sizing die. It also means I have to stop and unload the shell holder and try adjusting the pawl again. All in all it's a very frustrating operation.

    I'm getting to call Hornady again and see if they have a fix.
  7. LDBennett

    LDBennett Active Member

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    stev32k:

    OK so your press is really screwed up. I say choose one:

    1). Get them to email you a shipper (free shipping ) to send the whole press back to them for a real repair.

    2). Pressure them to give you your money back and go buy a Dillion RL550B.

    I think you are wasting reloading supplies and your time trying to get the press fixed via the telephone. I would have been making the above choice long ago. You gave it a good try but there is a point where retreat is a better option. They could lead you on for months and then refuse the take the press back because it is too "used". Avoid the middle men and talk directly to the service supervisor. Anyway that's my opinion, but I'm biased towards the Dillion press and service.

    LDBennett
  8. stev32k

    stev32k Active Member

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    Yeah, it's going back. They want me to try some new adjustment screws and if they don't work I'm going to pack it up and ship it back.

    I've had PM discussions with two guys on other forums and they both had to ship their LNL back for the same reason - would not hold adjustment.

    Here's what can happen on the up stroke if I don't watch carefully. (sorry about the focus)

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  9. soundguy

    soundguy Well-Known Member

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    wow.. and to think i ALMOST got a LNL setup instead of my rock chucker....
  10. LDBennett

    LDBennett Active Member

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    All of this is the result of a press with auto indexing. I have had three progressive presses with auto indexing (Older Hornady shotgun press, Dillion SQ Deal, and LEE 1000) and each was to some degree of a nightmare when they screwed up. Auto indexing is a waste. I can operate my Dillion RL550B without auto indexing nearly as fast as any of these auto indexing presses.

    Several things happen with the auto indexers. The action is usually abrupt which can throw powder out of a case moving from the powder station to the bullet seating station. The indexing can be less than perfect causing the die to not be in alignment with the case or the primer system to screw up because the case is not in alignment with the primer system. When the table/shell holder is moved by hand you can control it to keep the motion smooth and get it locked into alignment perfectly.

    Then when it does screwup you got powder all over the press and down in the workings of the press (auto indexing mechanism). This requires clearing the press to clean the powder out. Sometimes you have to take the press apart to get all the dumped powder out of it. Now, how does that save time when reloading?

    This thread is the first one I have seen that shows that the Hornady LNL progressive press is not the reliable press that you get with the Dillion RL550B. Funny how others have had similar problems with the Hornady LNL and not mentioned it before(??). Some come here to argue that the Dillion RL550B is over priced and has fewer features than the Hornady LNL progressive press. Well you guys can keep your Hornady press with its auto indexing if this thread is indicative of it. While the Dillion is not perfect it is not this imperfect. Based on this thread the Hornady press design is very suspect (6 broken pawls for the auto indexing before the poster dumped the press entirely!). There is something to be said for the Dillion design which is over 30 years old, has been evolutionarily updated along the way, has an excellent reputation overall, and changed the way service is done across the entire industry. Its continued popularity must say something (??).

    LDBennett
  11. RandyP

    RandyP Member

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    My Lee Classic turret also auto-indexes and honestly simply works each time, every time, thousands of rounds later and I still am using the original plastic ratchet. I know and respect that some folks have a much different experience and that gives them a negative bias.

    I have NO idea how many of the problems this thread expounds are machine design/manufacturing QA failure induced or are a result of understandable pilot error from a newcomer to reloading starting out complex. There IS a lot going on at once with a progressive and each step must be aligned correctly.

    I agree that if Hornady can't make it right, then perhaps the OP needs to try a different machine? Reloading is 'supposed' to be a fun, relaxing and rewarding hobby, and for most of us it is. Here's hoping things get straightened out in a satisfactory manner for stev32k.
  12. crockett007

    crockett007 New Member

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    Dillon...Dillon...Dillon
  13. al45lc

    al45lc New Member

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    Dillon's are great, but I don't own one.
    I have the Lee's (two of them) and they work fine for me.
    My advise is that if one is NOT mechanically inclined, avoid the LEE, it can be a challange.
    I am mechanically inclined, and I can make a Lee progressive sing.
    But it can be a hassle.
    I personnaly feel ALL progresives need a thoughtful, patient appoach.
    Read the manual, then read it again.
  14. soundguy

    soundguy Well-Known Member

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    and to think i'm missing all this excitement with my SS presses.. :)
  15. 312shooter

    312shooter Active Member

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    :yeahthat:

    Well said, and there is certainly valueable lessons learned when a reloaders first experience is with single stage reloading. The overwhelming positve feedback the LNL AP has generated in the reloading community leads me to think that the negatives are typically generated by inexperienced reloaders. BTW did anyone recieve the lates flyer from Grafs? The Dillon 550B is on sale for LESS than the LNL AP, looks like Dillon is throwing the next marketing punch, I'd love to get a 550B right next to the LNL AP.
  16. LDBennett

    LDBennett Active Member

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    It still could be user error but both stev32 and RAJBCPA appear to be mechanically inclined. Look again at the list of problem RAJBCPA had before dumping the hornady LNL progressive press:


    1. Ez-eject system locks up and often throws completed cases high to the right....
    2. primer system is horrible, constantly jamming
    3. Sliding primer bar fails to pick up primers
    4. primer guide rod pulls out of the retaining cup at the bottom of press
    5. the holes drilled in the press are mis-aligned....none of the 4 calipers I load aligned cases correctly in Station 1. You needed to use your hand to position the case under the sizing die. locking down the die with a case in the die in Station 1 is no help.
    6. the indexing pawls cannot be adjusted to advance the shell plate correctly
    7. there is no way to reliably replace broken indexing pawls; they don't come out of the press.
    8. the lock-n-load bushings need vice grips to remove and replace dies
    9. the L-N-L bushings release on their own during operation of the powder measure station
    10 The case retaining spring tears up and breaks

    He broke 6 pawls used in the auto advance mechanism. stev32k is also having problems with those advancing pawls.

    Has Hornady let down its quality control guard? Is the design bad and people have just been putting up with the press because they have so much invested in it?

    I don't applaud anyone having trouble with any reloading equipment and I hope stev32k gets his fixed but if he doesn't then it is money back time and move on (perhaps to the Dillion RL550B??).

    LDBennett
  17. soundguy

    soundguy Well-Known Member

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    just got the graffs flyer today.. havn't even looked it over yet.

    what I'd like to get is one of those lee hand presses.. so on lon trips when the wife is driving I can be usefull.. ;) and not be bored to tears listening to her audiobooks on cd...
  18. Jazzman

    Jazzman New Member

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    My LNL setup and operated correctly first time out. This may be because I resize on a single stage press first. I have always hand primed and don't mind spending the time to do it. This is a hobby for me and I find it enjoyable. The only trouble I had was when I decided to drop powder and expand the case in the same station. I ordered the powderfunnels expander but could not get it set up properly. I then went to Hornadys ptx expander and finally got it working right. Now I can use my powder cop and bullet feeder and the only thing I have to do is watch the powder cop and place cases in the press. I have only loaded a couple hundred rounds so far but have not had any trouble with indexing, etc. Again, this maybe because I eliminate the primer feed and hand prime all my cases. I am happy with my setup, but I may get a Dillon down the road just to see what they have to offer. I can afford to do this so why not.

    Jim
  19. LDBennett

    LDBennett Active Member

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    When you have to short circuit any part of the reloading process to use a progressive press to get acceptable result, there is something wrong with the tool. I reload totally and fully progressive on my Dillion. I don't have a bullet feeder or case feeder or even auto indexing and I think that the key to a reliable progressive reloading machine in the price class of the HORNADY Progressive LNL and the Dillion RL550B presses.

    But we all get to choose our frustration level.

    LDBennett
  20. stev32k

    stev32k Active Member

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    Mine is boxed up and on it's way back to Hornady. Even with all the problems I've had I'm not ready to give up. There are too many LNLs out there that are problem free and working well. Something is just not right with mine and I believe (hope) Hornady can fix the problem.

    When mine works it works well. It's fast and accurate, but it just won't hold alignment. After alignment about 10 cases will cycle before they start hitting the side of the sizing die and primers won't feed

    One thing that I am really impressed with is the powder measure. It is dead on every time. I've measured and tracked the variation between charges and it maintains the charge +/- .02 grains for an average error of less than 0.1% that is pretty darn good.

    I've had very good service from Hornady. When I've called them the parts usually arrive in two days and there has never been any hassle at all. The press and dies came with coupons good for 700 bullets. It said to allow 6 - 8 weeks for delivery, but they showed up on my doorstep in 9 days.
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