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 Post subject: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Wed May 20, 2020 5:10 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2017 6:40 pm
Posts: 15
Where does MEC fall as far as quality goes? On The Lee Loader end or the Dillon end?

I am familiar with the Lee Loadmaster and the Dillon 550B, and I find the Dillon to be much better from the build quality end of things, although my Loadmaster did serve me well. I just got tired of fiddling with the Loadmaster to keep the machine from hiccuping during reloading. I bought the 550B and never looked back

I'm looking to get a single stage press for shotshell reloading, unsure of which way to go. Considering PW but I've heard their customer service is not good, is that accurate?

Thanks
Mike A




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 Post subject: Re: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Wed May 20, 2020 5:36 pm 
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Location: Central CT
MEC quality is in between Lee and Ponsness.

I would never recommend the Lee. I had a Lee Load-All 2, it was OK, but the lack of adjustability was a time waster and I gave it away.

If you buy a single stage MEC, and especially if you are loading hunting ammo, do yourself a favor and buy the Sizemaster and not the 600 Jr. Mark V. The collet resizer and primer tray are worth the extra $$$. You will never wear either MEC out.

I have never heard complaints about Ponsness customer service. I have never heard anything bad about their single stage machines either.

However all machines have their compromises.

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 Post subject: Re: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Wed May 20, 2020 7:54 pm 
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Joined: Fri Feb 12, 2010 9:34 pm
Posts: 498
Location: Boerne, Texas
I have no knowledge of the load all or the Dillion, my 20 gauge is 20 years and works great, my 28 gauge is 18 years, works great, both are hydraulic 9000, I load probably 4000 rounds a year of each gauge. MEC quailty is pretty good.


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 Post subject: Re: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Wed May 20, 2020 8:31 pm 
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MEC is decent and reliable, bit not the best....nor is it even anywhere as poor as something from LEE; its design is dated, some of the aspects are now 40+ years old, and there are enough aftermarket products to bring it into the 20/21st century

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The bitterness of poor quality is remembered long after the sweetness of low price has faded from memory, Aldo Gucci

Never argue with an idiot. They will only bring you down to their level and beat you with experience, George Carlin


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 Post subject: Re: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Wed May 20, 2020 8:58 pm 
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Location: Annapolis, MD
What's your plan? Why do you want to reload shotgun shells? How many shells per month do you shoot or plan to shoot? It's real hard to make any money loading 12 ga., especially at the single stage production rate.

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 Post subject: Re: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 7:22 am 
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Joined: Mon Jan 06, 2020 11:43 am
Posts: 17
The only complaint I have about MEC's Sizemaster is that the resizing collet eventually wears out and the cost of replacement is in the $60.00+ range. It's a 12 gauge model. I also have a 600 Jr. in 20 gauge. I added the auto priming system. I like it at least as well as the Sizemaster. I also have an adjustable shot and powder bar in both of them. These enable me to fine tune my loads to keep the recoil down to where my old shoulder can tolerate shooting a lot. :D


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 Post subject: Re: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 9:24 am 
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Joined: Sun Jun 24, 2018 2:51 pm
Posts: 1367
Location: S.E. Wisconsin
ND Guy wrote:
The only complaint I have about MEC's Sizemaster is that the resizing collet eventually wears out and the cost of replacement is in the $60.00+ range. It's a 12 gauge model.


That will happen,it is a "wear part". It will happen a lot faster if you are trying to size your hulls (especially steel) to factory size by using MEC's GO/NO GO gauge. I have 4 9000's, the 12 gauge being 20 years old and I have not replaced a collet yet. I resize my AA's to fit my gun.


Steve

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I repair MEC presses. PM me.
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 Post subject: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 9:40 am 
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I compare MEC loaders to the Remington 1100 shotgun. Both contain stamped metal parts and both work extremely well. Both far outsell their competition and both have proven reliability. For the money, nothing even comes remotely close to the MEC for value and the quality of the reloaded shell that it produces. You can spend much much more for anodized and finely machined metal that won’t produce a reload any better than a MEC. And, like the 1100, they seem to last forever. It’s your money.

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Last edited by casonet on Thu May 21, 2020 12:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 10:11 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 26, 2015 8:22 pm
Posts: 234
Location: Central Texas
You should be able to find used MEC loaders at very attractive prices. Since you seem to be learning search for a used MEC 600 Jr which often are available for $100. I have had used ones given to me and bought several for $50 in 28, 20 and 12 gauges. Look on Craigslist, ebay or at shooting ranges for a used one.

Buying a used one allows you to learn and you can always sell it if you don't like the loader or want something better. I run 5,000 plus shells a year through a used Grabber I got for $150. Occasionally I need a part but they are inexpensive.


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 Post subject: Re: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 10:13 am 
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Joined: Fri Jan 16, 2015 9:11 am
Posts: 855
This pretty much sums it up. I couldn't have said it better.

casonet wrote:
I compare MEC loafers to the Remington 1100 shotgun. Both contain stamped metal parts and both work extremely well. Both far outsell their competition and both have proven reliability. For the money, nothing even comes remotely close to the MEC for value and the quality of the reloaded shell that it produces. You can spend much much more for anodized and finely machined metal that won’t produce a reload any better than a MEC. And, like the 1100, they seem to last forever. It’s your money.


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 Post subject: Re: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 10:36 am 
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Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2011 6:37 pm
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Location: Eastern Oregon
The objective in reloading is a quality shell... My 9000H machines produce a shell no different in appearance, performance and dependability than new... When set correctly many machines will do the same. I have replaced parts.. all have been cause I screwed up, not because of welds, materials, design's or paint schemes..... As with any tool the operator needs to understand the construction, limitations and operation of that tool...... much of the "quality" in any machine is based on the performance of the operator......... Larry


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 Post subject: Re: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 10:37 am 
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Joined: Sun Jun 24, 2018 2:51 pm
Posts: 1367
Location: S.E. Wisconsin
casonet wrote:
I compare MEC loafers to the Remington 1100 shotgun. Both contain stamped metal parts and both work extremely well. Both far outsell their competition and both have proven reliability. For the money, nothing even comes remotely close to the MEC for value and the quality of the reloaded shell that it produces. You can spend much much more for anodized and finely machined metal that won’t produce a reload any better than a MEC. And, like the 1100, they seem to last forever. It’s your money.



Another way to look at it, reloaders are a lot like trucks. You can buy a Chevy, GMC or a Cadillac, how much do you want to pay to get your 1100 to the range.


Steve

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I repair MEC presses. PM me.
Used to be Steve Y


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 Post subject: Re: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 1:52 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2005 11:25 pm
Posts: 2150
Location: Attica, Mi
I take my guns to the range in a DODGE - only the best will do :D . I take the apposite approach. I like the 600 over a Sizemaster because it's almost impossible to screw up a sizing ring compared to a collet with fingers. They both do the same thing, except one can break and you'll have something to buy. I always thought it would be nice if it were possible to use a ring on my Grabbers or 9000s. As a general rule, just about nothing ever breaks so I'd rate them as a excellent buy. Because so many guys use one, there's always someone who can help if you're having troubles. The only items I've had to buy are the plastic start crimps and a collet once because the fingers were sprung. Get a smooth start crimp - it'll start crimp 6 or 8 point, or Federal papers. You won't have to change the die.

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 Post subject: Re: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 3:16 pm 
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I haven't ever replaced a collet on either a Sizemaster or a 9000 series reloader. The newest machine I own was made in 1996. I resize 0.002" to 0.003" over SAAMI Minimum Cartridge on both my 16 and 12 gauge machines. 4 machines in total.

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 Post subject: Re: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 4:10 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jun 24, 2018 2:51 pm
Posts: 1367
Location: S.E. Wisconsin
bladesmith wrote:
I take my guns to the range in a DODGE - only the best will do :D



I only choose those 3 because they are all GM products and the only thing that makes them different is the "bling" they come with. I dont drive anyone of the 4.

Steve

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The More Times You Pull The Trigger The More Fun You Are Having.
I repair MEC presses. PM me.
Used to be Steve Y


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 Post subject: Re: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 5:51 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2017 6:40 pm
Posts: 15
Nebs wrote:
What's your plan? Why do you want to reload shotgun shells? How many shells per month do you shoot or plan to shoot? It's real hard to make any money loading 12 ga., especially at the single stage production rate.

I'm looking at it as a hobby that will also keep me in 12 gauge buckshot regardless of any ammo frenzy, or bullshit laws that may pop up. I see myself as basically just blasting away with a little buckshot, learning what loads my gun like, etc. No real volume to speak of.

I do reload handgun ammo, and while I don't shoot my handguns much, I do get a lot of satisfaction out of knowing I can reload whatever I want, regardless of ammo shortages, or other horseshit.

I do shoot sporting clays (150-200, rounds a week), but I don't plan on loading any target shells, I've heard you don't save any money going that route.


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 Post subject: Re: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 9:12 pm 
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The notion that you can’t save money by reloading 12 ga holds only with target loads. Have you checked the price on heavy field loads and Annie Oakley loads, not to mention your buckshot loads? $25-$30 per box for some loads that I’ve seen in Cabelas. I’ll guarantee you will save money by stuffing your own with these loads. Go for it!

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 Post subject: Re: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 9:28 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jan 08, 2008 6:20 pm
Posts: 21981
I disagree. Basic GC target loads now run $6-$7/box at retail outlets; I can reload for $3.50 $4.35/box all depending on payload

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The bitterness of poor quality is remembered long after the sweetness of low price has faded from memory, Aldo Gucci

Never argue with an idiot. They will only bring you down to their level and beat you with experience, George Carlin


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 Post subject: Re: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Fri May 22, 2020 7:12 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2005 11:25 pm
Posts: 2150
Location: Attica, Mi
STS just went on sale for 5 something a box - pretty cheap. But even at that price if you don't mind shooting 3/4 or 7/8oz 12ga loads which is all I do, then it is still cheaper to reload for target shooting.

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 Post subject: Re: MEC Quality?
PostPosted: Fri May 22, 2020 7:19 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2005 11:25 pm
Posts: 2150
Location: Attica, Mi
Forgot, my new 600 in 410 just came yesterday. I have a problem with it and gonna have to call Mec. The pin on the deprime punch is only .170 and pushes against the center of the primer and pushes it out leaving the ring around it still in the shell. Now the shell wants to stick to the pin. I measured the pins on my other Mecs and they measure .190. I don't know why Mec thought the pin had to be smaller because it was a 410, or if it was just a screw up. The primer size didn't change.



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