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Scales.....balance beam or electronic?

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  • Scales.....balance beam or electronic?

    Am I missing out by not having an electronic scale for weighing my loads?
    Are they easier, faster, or more accurate?

    Opinions, experiences?

    Open to all.
    At your earliest convenience.

    Thanks, JWB

  • #2
    Yes, yes, and maybe.

    I use them in my work and love them. But at home I'm still using the balance beam scales I bought 30+ years ago. Go figure. The BB scales work just fine, and I've never been moved to buy the electronic, even though I know for a fact I would like them better.

    If you can afford the electronic, go for them.
    "Lay in the weeds and wait, and when you get your chance to say something, say something good."
    Merle Haggard


    • #3
      This is one I'll keep an eye on too, as I'm about to either buy the Lyman 1200DPS scale or not.

      Anyone with experience with that particular scale? I don't really want to waste money if it doesnt perform well.

      Thanks for any info/experiences ect...


      • #4
        One thing I do like about a balance beam scale is how you can see the swing start as you trickle the powder closer and closer to your target weight. I have never gone over....
        I have gone over with electronic scales...

        Now I hear the voices telling me I need both.....
        Float-CFI, Photo Guide, Fishing Guide, Remote Kayaking
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        • #5
          I'll add an important point. The decision to buy electronic or BB depends on what kind of things you do with it. For measuring powder charges only, there's not that much difference in my book.

          But when you start weighing a lot of things for comparisons- such as bullets- there's no question that you need the electronic. I weigh all the bullets I cast, simply to help me spot any with voids and light weight. I certainly don't use my balance beam for that. It would take forever!

          Since I have access to the electronics at work, I bring one home for weighing large numbers of bullets. Dirt easy. If I couldn't borrow, I would have bought one years ago. Doing the same job with a BB is painful.
          "Lay in the weeds and wait, and when you get your chance to say something, say something good."
          Merle Haggard


          • #6
            I've heard about folks having problems with the electronic scales, and hence have shied away from them. The problems have been due to their sensitivity, and folks occasionally getting weird readings due to power supply problems.

            Given, I use a balance beam only to check max charges on my powder thrower, and throw all my charges.
            Those that are successful in Alaska are those who are flexible, and allow the reality of life in Alaska to shape their dreams, vs. trying to force their dreams on the reality of Alaska.

            If you have a tenuous grasp of reality, Alaska is not for you.


            • #7
              RCBS Eletronic

              I have a RCBS Eletronic Powder thrower and dig scale........never go back to manual scales.


              • #8
                Lyman 1200 DPS

                I have the Lyman 1200 DPS and I think it's great. Plug it in let it warm up for the 30 Min and then calibrate the unit. Add powder set the charge and hit enter. I weight bullets and other things as well , I'm very confident with it's quality. The scale has allot of features that I don't use but it's there if you want them, Memory, Lap top interface, ect.



                • #9
                  I have a PACT electronic scale. It is faster than using a beam but it does have a tendency to "drift" and you must rezero it occassionly. If you are aware of there shortcomings they can speed up your reloading process.


                  • #10
                    I have one of the lyman scales also. Dont expect it to use it as a powder thrower if speed is something you desire. It is slow to crank out the powder. I like it for throwing charges that I want to be precise. I actually use it as a powder trickler. It is nice to be able to just weigh a charge without having to screw around with the powder thrower and balance beem scale. Especially when you are just making small batches of test rounds.


                    • #11
                      The only thing I have found is that some electronic scales don't constantly monitor the weight, they cycle. I have a Dillon that does but a friend had one of the earlier RCBS scales that didn't. That made life a pain when trying to trickle charges. I am still using my father's old O Haus scale he bought in the sixties, still works great and don't cost a thing. Electronic scales are nice if you use a progressive as they are a lot quicker but using a single stage the BB scales work fine.


                      • #12
                        Many replys - good info - question?

                        I've seen several good replys, to which I say, thank you.

                        From the feedback I've seen, I'm beginning to think a good route to go may be to purchase a quality balance beam scale and an electronic dispenser. Use the bb scale as a quick check and trickle to "tweek"
                        if required.

                        What's the opinions? Do you think I'd be able to enjoy the best of both worlds this way.

                        The floor is open again.



                        • #13
                          Ballance Beam or digital

                          I have used both with excellent results. It all comes down to what you want to use them for. I have a Lee balance beam and love the accuracy. I use my digital scale to measure out several loads (each in their own container) gn. I then move the load over to the balance beam scale to trickle in the last little bit. I have found this to be a big time saver and it allows me the best of worlds, speed and accuracy. I have also found the RCBS powder meter / digital scale combo to be very reliable, although this also requires a little more green stuff. If you have any friend, who reloads, ask to see their reloading benches and try their equipment to get the best feel for what works for you. My wife always asks me why I need more tools for reloading and all I tell her is that it is for safety. She is usually fine with it after that because she loves to shoot and like the economy of me rolling my own.
                          Good luck and let the lead fly.
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