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Discussion Starter #1
I have used an old Bonanza beam scale for 40 years or more, and it has served me well. I would lke to get a scale that has magnetic dampening, though, and thought I would see what everyone else uses. Any recommendations?
 

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I have an RCBS 10-10 which I like a lot, it has a micrometer poise for grains and tenths. I used to have the Ohaus version which I used for 40 +/- years. It was always good. Recently,about 5 years ago, I found a good used RCBS/Ohaus 304 Dial-a-Matic balance which I really like. In my mind you can't go wrong with a good used/or new balance. The RCBS 505 is good.
 

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Its pretty hard to beat a RCBS balance beam scale. I have a RCBS 510, same beam as a 10-10 but with a 505 body. I got it with an Ammo Crafter Kit back in the 70s. For a while, I was sold on digital electronic scales but I must say, a balance beam with magnetic dampening is about as good as it gets for reloading, especially for trickling up to a precise charge weight. I still use my digital scales for weighing batches of bullets.
 

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I use a Hornady digital scale. Works great and fast if there are no electronics near buy. Tried to use it once on my desk near my PC and it would jump +/- .3 gr and it drove me crazy until I figured it out. It does require a battery which a balance scale does not.
 

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I am using the Hornady beam scale. Got it back in the early 80s and it still works great. I bought some check weights a couple years ago when I was trying to find a discrepancy in velocity over my chronograph. The scale was still right on which eliminated it as the source. I've never felt the need to try anything else. If it isn't broke, don't try to fix it :) .
 

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I been using a small Frankford Arsenal digital scale, seems to work ok. The price was about $25 when I bought it. I double check it now and then with the metal version of the Lyman 505 balance scale. Always a good idea check it with another scale or a weight.
 

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My RCBS scales have been working for over 40 years now with zero issues.
 

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My 1979 vintage RCBS 5-0-5 beam scale is working like it's still new. Checkweights verify its accuracy.

Don't know if they are still made today like they were in 1979, but it would be hard to improve on that old 5-0-5...

Bayou52
 

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RCBS 5-0-5 , the magnetic dampening and triple beam adjustments (poise's) are the best thing since sliced bread .
For 40 years I used a Redding #1 it had 2 beam poise's and oil damper but was messy to use so mostly it went undampened . It was stolen about 10 years ago.
I didn't realize how God awful that Redding was untill I started useing the RCBS with magnetic dampening .... I wish the Redding had been stolen sooner .

I also have a Lyman Pro - 500 beam scale as a back up , it's a good scale for the price and notice that Dillion sells a nice scale that looks similar to the RCBS . Triple poise and magnetic dampening , that should also be a good one .
Gary
 

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Discussion Starter #11
RCBS seems to carry the day. They no longer make the 505, but I found an Ohaus 505, which is the one they made for RCBS, so looks like I’m good to go. Thanks for all the help.
 

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I’m still using a 50 year old Pacific......it’s dampened. I had/have a Franklin digital, quit using it because I could pull a powder charged pan off, put it back on and have a different reading every time. Turns out it’s consistently a grain high compared my beam scale and that’s after using the provided check weight.

I guess you know what I’m trusting.
 

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I have a 505 that I have gone back to using for some of my calibers. I use an RCBS chargemaster digital scale, but like many have found myself going back to the beam. One thing is that its actually faster. Instead of waiting for the electric dispenser, which can be slow even on small charges cause of the time it takes to dispense the last few tenths of a grain, I have gone to a lee scoop set followed by trickling the last little bit using a RCBS powder trickler.
 

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OP, glad you could find a 505.

RCBS 505 first and only scale I've ever owned. I guess I got lucky. This was in the days before interwebs and online reviews. My uncle said it was a good one and I took his word.
 

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I have had my RCBS 10-10 'forever'. I will admit that most often I use my PACT electronic scale because bench space is limited. I would love to have both on the bench as each has it's strong points. Sorting brass is quicker with the PACT but trickling powder on the RCBS rocks!

Bruce
 

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I have the Redding Model 2 magnetic damped scale and a set of calibration weights.
I bought this because the rest of my rig and dies are Redding.

I have no experience with anything else.
My neighbor has (5) RCBS after his Dad passed...
Maybe I can compare them with mine.
 

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Ohaus is the OEM for nearly all reloading balance beam scales but are labeled with a different brand name. The only exception I know of is the cheapie plastic Lee 100 grain scale.

bgavin mentioned calibration weights. This is very important, especially if your balance beam has seen a lot of use. Years ago I started with a RCBS scale that had a poise "saw tooth" beam in 5 grain increments, rather than the easier to use 10 grain used on more recent models. This scale was calibrated when new and I assumed it was still calibrated after many years of use. I was very surprised to find it was way off, making the powder charge notably heavier that what the sale indicated …. enough to get you in trouble if you load at the high end of the chart. I suspected there was a problem because the scale didn't level like it did when new so I borrowed a set of calibration weights from a friend and got the bad news. I promptly bought my own check weight set (Ohaus set, in grains, not grams). After a close inspection, I found the "saw teeth" on the soft aluminum beam had worn round from dragging the poise weight back and forth. This made the pan end of the beam lighter so more weight was needed to make it zero at a set weight.

I sent the scale back to RCBS but it wasn't repairable and that model had been discontinued. RCBS gave me a "credit slip" for the full cost of the scale that could be applied at any retail store that sold RCBS products. I ended up using the credit to help buy a new RCBS Ammo Crafter Kit, which I still have and use. I test my current RCBS 510 a couple times a year using the check weights in the same range as my intended powder drop …. 5, 10, 20, and 50 grains. This pretty much covers most of the handgun and rifle powder charges that I use.
 
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