LNL-AP Validating Powder Charge

In this video, you’ll see how easy it is to work up powder charges (work up or down to the charge weight you want for a particular load) on the Hornady Lock-N-Load AP Progressive reloading press. The unique case retention spring design makes it easy to insert and remove cases from any station on the press.

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14 thoughts on “LNL-AP Validating Powder Charge”

  1. Have you noticed any variations in COAL using the Hornady LNL press when starting and completing a loading session. I noticed a 0.010 low to high varaition. I also noticed that at the end of a session teh COAL is longer with out any other cases on the shell plate except the very last case of the run. Any suggstions to minimize teh variatio? What are teh spects for variation on COAL, I have seen +/- 0.005 is acceptable.

    1. Tim- Yes, I have noticed more of a variation when “running up” and “running down” the stations. If you have everything dialed in properly and are using good dies, then I would suspect you should be able to maintain +/- .005″ variation. Depending on the bullet profile, you’ll need to use a comparator to find out true variation (especially with rifle bullets). What kind of bullets are you seating, and what dies are you using? Are you seating and crimping in one operation? What seating plug are you using?

      Answers to those questions will help me to help you 🙂

  2. Gavin,

    Your videos and great explanations convinced me to buy a LNL and case feeder. I use a Lee Classic Turret and wanted to move to a progressive. I can say that the Hornady wasn’t as plug and play as I would have liked, but once working it does run well. I had a few missing parts but a call to Hornady solved that.

    I know you are not a help line, but I ordered the Powder Funnels expander die (no instructions from them) and while it looks great, it does not work well for me. I’ve only tried it on 38 Special cases and it seems way too tall as you have to just thread the powder measure a few turns. It crunched a few cases for me so I just went back to a separate expander die. I couldn’t imagine it would ever work with a rifle case. I really liked the powder-through capability of the Lee setup and I was hoping to be able to use a powder cop, bullet seater and then crimp die.

    So, my question is do you have any thoughts around how the Powder Funnel worked for you or any videos to that effect? People say the Hornady powder-through expanders do not expand enough so I do not think that is an option.

    Thanks,

    1. Craig-

      Have you ironed out your issues with the Powder Funnel product? I use one with my LNL and have never had any problems.

      Take care!

      John

  3. Are you not afraid that your $20 eBay scale is inaccurate? I recently purchased a $40 MTM Scale from Bass Pro that was horribly inaccurate. At first, I was not sure if it was the scale, or my Hornady LNL powder feeder being wrong. But after weighing the same case repeatedly, I was getting +/- .5 gr and I thought was was not accurate enough to be safe.

  4. I took that MTM scale back and bought the Cabelas brand 1500 scale. Its a pretty nice deal. However, I am now having problems with my LNL Powder Measure giving me accurate powder drops. It varies a .1 on every other stroke. I find myself zeroing out each case, and then taking 2-5 pulls of powder to get the right measure. Not what I expected to get out of a progressive.

  5. Bill- what powder are you using? That can make a BIG difference. Alliant Unique varies a lot in the LNL AP powder measure ( +/- .2 grains ) for me, where Winchester 231 / HP-38 is usually dead-on from charge to charge…

    1. we’ve been using the Cabelas 1500 scale for verification, just make sure to calibrate it occasionally. we noticed the same thing with IMR 700-X(large thin flakes), it would vary +/- .2 grains sometimes, and would occasionally bridge. we finally finished it off and have switched to W-231 for most of our pistol loads. after switching to 231, it’s been dead-on… for rifle loads we tried Hodgdon Varget with no problems to report. for safety we put a small LED light on the press so we could see the volume in most pistol cases that we load… it’s easy to spot a squib or double charge if you just look before putting the bullet in. having some sort of list of which powders work well in a progressive would be great

  6. I talked to Hornady yesterday (excellent customer service) and he said that a +/- 01 was within specifications for that type of powder. He said for the most accurate loads, I should be using a quality dispenser and a powder trickle.

    I suppose, being a noob, expected tolerances to be a bit tighter and I learned that the progressives are GREAT at churning out hundreds of bullets an hour so long as you are not loading match grade ammo.

  7. I recently got my Lock and Load AP and love it! I loaded 500 40sw with no problems and have switched to 223. I am having problems with the primer not wanting to seat ( I guess I need to use something other than the RCBS primer pocket swager). But what I am really interested in is setting up another powder measurer for the AP. Does anyone sell just the body and case activated peices as I have both the large and small rotors and both metering inserts?
    Thanks for putting together a great site! Also how many rounds do you load in a year? Must be in the tens of thousands!
    Chris

  8. My experience with variations in OAL with my Hornady LNL press:

    The LNL shellplate design is at fault. Until it is fully loaded down with a case in each position, the plate is susceptible to tipping, causing the bullet seating die to produce varying OAL results.

    The first 3 rounds of a less-than-fully loaded down shellplate have consistently 0.002 shorter OAL than the rest (for .45 ACP, less for 9mm). After the shellplate gets filled with a case in every position, the OAL stabilizes until the end of the run when you stop putting brass in and they run through each position of the press. At the end of the run the last 2-3 rounds are off yet again (tho I forget now whether they’re long or short).

    I know my bullet seating die is not at fault – I use Redding micrometer seating dies that hold their settings very well.

    Because you just have to monitor OAL very carefully at the start and the end of every run, I’ve started lengthening my reloading runs from 50 to 200 to minimize this effect. I fill 2 primer tubes and 4 bullet feed tubes (50 bullets in each tube, gravity fed to the bullet feed die). Once I get past the first 3 rounds I get consistent OALs until the last 3 rounds.

    It doesn’t seem to matter how firmly tightened down the shellplate bolt is. The differential weight on an unfilled shellplate affects seating depth. As long as you’re aware of it, its a minor issue. The difference seems larger on .45 ACP than with 9mm, perhaps because of the increased case/powder/primer weight.

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