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 Post subject: Re: Adventures in learning the Hornady 366
PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 11:58 am 
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I was going to buy one a couple of years ago and decided against it: too much thinking involved, and I didn’t like the extra step of pulling the resized hull off of the die and reinserting it in the machine.



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 Post subject: Re: Adventures in learning the Hornady 366
PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 12:13 pm 
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casonet wrote:
I was going to buy one a couple of years ago and decided against it: too much thinking involved, and I didn’t like the extra step of pulling the resized hull off of the die and reinserting it in the machine.
The 366 receives a lot of criticism for this design. It does not bother me in the least. The alternatives are a press that uses a collet-style resizer, which has it's own drawbacks, or the style of loader, like the PW and the Spolar, that use dies that the hull rides around in throughout the loading process, or are much more complex machines, like the Dillon and the RCBS. No loader is perfect and the trade-off made by the designer of the 366 of putting the resizing die off the shell plate translates into more simplicity for the remainder of the reloader.

PS: Here is a link to the "40 years with the Hornady 366" series of articles:

http://web.archive.org/web/20130816183802/http://bunkershooting.com/366ArticlePart_I.html

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 Post subject: Re: Adventures in learning the Hornady 366
PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 12:28 pm 
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casonet wrote:
I was going to buy one a couple of years ago and decided against it: too much thinking involved, and I didn’t like the extra step of pulling the resized hull off of the die and reinserting it in the machine.


I almost never used that Station 1 sizing die because it just wasn't necessary with AA or STS hulls. If you're going to load the cheapo hulls or dumpster dive for hulls, then it might be necessary, but I would say that 99.9% of the time I never used it and didn't have any trouble loading shells into my O/U's. Sometimes I used my reloads in my semiautos and they usually worked there too, but mostly I shot my reloads in my O/U's and they worked fine without resizing.

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 Post subject: Re: Adventures in learning the Hornady 366
PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 12:47 pm 
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I wound up buying the Grand, and I don’t see how it’s more complex. It seems to me to be about the most simple and straightforward progressives on the market. I really, really like the fact that I can run a single test load through the entire cycle, shut off the primers at will and never have to worry about powder and shot shut offs and never have a spill. I suppose it’s a matter of what you get used to. I enjoyed learning more about the 366, though.

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 Post subject: Re: Adventures in learning the Hornady 366
PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 12:57 pm 
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This is one modification I made to my 366 that enables me to check the powder drop if and when I choose to do so. I use the same size screw to hold down the mod ends that are normally used on the press (10-32 size).

It works great, but, I did not “think” of this mod myself, but read about it on this site or another and ran with.

Ken


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 Post subject: Re: Adventures in learning the Hornady 366
PostPosted: Sat Dec 30, 2017 12:00 pm 
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A few more boxes loaded with the 366, and I'm starting to like it.

The reason to use Remington hulls, is that you really should set the machine for either Remington or AA hulls, and the cheap Sport Load and Gun Club Remington hulls are more plentiful. Also, the Remington is just a wee bit taller, and therefore crimps better and easier. You could set the machine to load AA shells, but it would be a tight fit using AA type Claybuster wads and Unique.

AA HS hulls are shorter than Remingtons, and they have a basewad that seems to be more subject to getting a wrinkle from the wad grabbing it, and the AA HS shells seem to have two or three different heights. The few old compression formed AA 20 gauge hulls I have are wonderful, and load up the same as any Remington, from the cheapest six fold Sport Load to the middle line Gun Club to the top of the line STS brass head hulls. Remington, simply makes a cheaper, more reloader friendly shell than Winchester, in the 12 and 20 gauge lines.

I'm giving my AA hulls to Steve, when I give the machine back to him.

But I have a few more flats of Remington 20 gauge hulls to load on his 366 before I give it back.

This thing is a lot faster than my PW 375, and if you are careful using it, it's a shell making factory, deluxe.

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 Post subject: Re: Adventures in learning the Hornady 366
PostPosted: Sat Dec 30, 2017 12:58 pm 
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casonet wrote:
I wound up buying the Grand, and I don’t see how it’s more complex. It seems to me to be about the most simple and straightforward progressives on the market. I really, really like the fact that I can run a single test load through the entire cycle, shut off the primers at will and never have to worry about powder and shot shut offs and never have a spill. I suppose it’s a matter of what you get used to. I enjoyed learning more about the 366, though.

There is a tremendous amount of that in the reloading equipment world.

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 Post subject: Re: Adventures in learning the Hornady 366
PostPosted: Sat Dec 30, 2017 6:46 pm 
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SuperXOne wrote:

AA HS hulls are shorter than Remingtons, and they have a basewad that seems to be more subject to getting a wrinkle from the wad grabbing it, and the AA HS shells seem to have two or three different heights. The few old compression formed AA 20 gauge hulls I have are wonderful, and load up the same as any Remington, from the cheapest six fold Sport Load to the middle line Gun Club to the top of the line STS brass head hulls. Remington, simply makes a cheaper, more reloader friendly shell than Winchester, in the 12 and 20 gauge lines.

I'm giving my AA hulls to Steve, when I give the machine back to him.
A couple of things. First, hull length variation infects most all hull types, Rems are not immune. And that "wrinkle" is not caused by the wad catching on the AAHS basewad, it's caused by the "blivet" effect. If you were to use a denser powder, such as either 20/28 or WSF, you would not get that wrinkle. The wrinkle is caused by a stack height at the is too tall. Also, the final crimp die on your 366 has a taper to the inside designed for real tapered walled hulls, such as the Rem and the old AACF. The AAHS is a straight walled hull masquerading as a tapered walled hull. You can get a straight walled crimp die body from Hornady that works better on the AAHS hulls.

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 Post subject: Re: Adventures in learning the Hornady 366
PostPosted: Sun Dec 31, 2017 11:51 am 
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Further fiddling with Steve's 366 has produced an adjustment, that will load the shortest AA HS hull perfectly, and then load all the taller hulls very well, and still keep the Remington hulls loaded with a swirled crimp.

The learning curve on any press, is the most important thing about using it.

Even a 366 can be set up to be dead nuts reliable.

But it's a process, getting there, it surely is.:)

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 Post subject: Re: Adventures in learning the Hornady 366
PostPosted: Thu Jan 04, 2018 10:04 am 
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Yesterday, the $25 worth of parts to rebuild Steve's 366 arrived, and I put them on yesterday evening.

I wish I'd waited to troubleshoot this press, until I had a new advance hook and new powder and shot gaskets and metal cut offs. It works a whole lot slicker, now.

The old powder and shot gaskets were worn out almost entirely. They look like garden hose washers, but may be made of some special material. Now the press doesn't dribble tiny flecks Unique and occasionally a few pieces of shot behind the press where the charge bar runs to the back.

The new metal slides for the powder and shot make the press very easy to cut off powder and shot. No more grunting and cussing, my wife says. Steve had straightened and filed and bent the old ones where they worked, but the old worn out parts don't even come close to working as slick as the brand new parts. Now, the press cuts off powder and shot easily, without using a pair of pliers, and you can run one shell around and cut off the powder and shot easily.

The biggest change in operation was the new advance platen and spring. I'd bent the old one, and stretched the spring, so that it worked, but it doesn't work anything as well as new parts. If the advance hook and spring are brand new, the press advances and locks in place with a positive click, and it's far more enjoyable to run.

I considered replacing the plastic tab on the primer drop, the wad guide, and the spring under the primer seat, but the old parts work so well, I left them in a plastic bag with the old parts, and marked the bag with a Sharpie to tell a future owner what the parts are for.

I had about 1,250 20 gauge hulls, the overwhelming majority of which were Remingtons. I'm not reloading any more Winchester AA's. They'll work, but they are shorter and not as consistent in height as the Remington hulls, and 15.3 grains of Unique and a Winchester clone wad is a very tight fit for the new Winchester AA HS hulls.

Steve says he found a 20 gauge progressive Texan press in his garage that needs fine tuning, and he'll be over sometime to fetch his 366 and we'll see if we can help the Texan work better.

He needs to bring more hulls. I bought another bag of wads, a thousand more primers, and I guess we'll see how Texan made a progressive press.

I can't be much different than the Pacific 366, except there aren't any spare parts for the Texan, I suppose.

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 Post subject: Re: Adventures in learning the Hornady 366
PostPosted: Thu Jan 04, 2018 10:42 am 
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Good luck on the Texan, SuperXOne.

Ken

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 Post subject: Re: Adventures in learning the Hornady 366
PostPosted: Thu Jan 04, 2018 10:55 am 
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Parts are no longer made for Texan. Although you may be able to use some MEC parts. Good luck finding a wad guide!

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 Post subject: Re: Adventures in learning the Hornady 366
PostPosted: Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:37 pm 
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SuperXOne wrote:
Yesterday, the $25 worth of parts to rebuild Steve's 366 arrived, and I put them on yesterday evening.

I wish I'd waited to troubleshoot this press, until I had a new advance hook and new powder and shot gaskets and metal cut offs. It works a whole lot slicker, now.

The old powder and shot gaskets were worn out almost entirely. They look like garden hose washers, but may be made of some special material. Now the press doesn't dribble tiny flecks Unique and occasionally a few pieces of shot behind the press where the charge bar runs to the back.

The new metal slides for the powder and shot make the press very easy to cut off powder and shot. No more grunting and cussing, my wife says. Steve had straightened and filed and bent the old ones where they worked, but the old worn out parts don't even come close to working as slick as the brand new parts. Now, the press cuts off powder and shot easily, without using a pair of pliers, and you can run one shell around and cut off the powder and shot easily.

The biggest change in operation was the new advance platen and spring. I'd bent the old one, and stretched the spring, so that it worked, but it doesn't work anything as well as new parts. If the advance hook and spring are brand new, the press advances and locks in place with a positive click, and it's far more enjoyable to run.

I considered replacing the plastic tab on the primer drop, the wad guide, and the spring under the primer seat, but the old parts work so well, I left them in a plastic bag with the old parts, and marked the bag with a Sharpie to tell a future owner what the parts are for.

I had about 1,250 20 gauge hulls, the overwhelming majority of which were Remingtons. I'm not reloading any more Winchester AA's. They'll work, but they are shorter and not as consistent in height as the Remington hulls, and 15.3 grains of Unique and a Winchester clone wad is a very tight fit for the new Winchester AA HS hulls.

Steve says he found a 20 gauge progressive Texan press in his garage that needs fine tuning, and he'll be over sometime to fetch his 366 and we'll see if we can help the Texan work better.

He needs to bring more hulls. I bought another bag of wads, a thousand more primers, and I guess we'll see how Texan made a progressive press.

I can't be much different than the Pacific 366, except there aren't any spare parts for the Texan, I suppose.


I am somewhat familiar with Texan loaders and they were very well made but unfortunately without a ready source for parts; I am not sure what else would interchange. Good luck!




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