Lee Auto Drum Powder Measure Users - What is your experience?

The #1 community for Gun Owners in Indiana

Member Benefits:

  • Fewer Ads!
  • Discuss all aspects of firearm ownership
  • Discuss anti-gun legislation
  • Buy, sell, and trade in the classified section
  • Chat with Local gun shops, ranges, trainers & other businesses
  • Discover free outdoor shooting areas
  • View up to date on firearm-related events
  • Share photos & video with other members
  • ...and so much more!
  • Bill2905

    Master
    Site Supporter
    Rating - 100%
    3   0   0
    Feb 1, 2021
    1,780
    113
    Lake County
    I have been using a Lee Pro Auto Disk powder measure my Lee turret press for a long, long time and it has served me well. It has a few shortcomings and I have been looking at the Lee Auto Drum measure as a possible upgrade. For those of you who use one, what are your thoughts, pros and cons?
     
    Last edited:

    t-squared

    Master
    Site Supporter
    Rating - 100%
    7   0   0
    May 9, 2012
    1,573
    83
    Crown Point
    I started reloading for handguns a few years ago and that's what I started with. I've now got 5 of them and they've all been trouble free so far.
    I use the red powder hopper that came with the earlier ones since I use a powder baffle in it.
    I "seasoned" mine by coating the body and the drum with powdered graphite before running any powder through them...seems to help it get consistent drops from the beginning.
    I'm able to drop everything from 2.7gr of Bullseye to 22gr of 2400 using the small drum.
    BTW, you don't have to use their riser on a turret press. Simply remove the outer part of the slider/drop part at the notch with a dremel cut-off wheel. It will them fit in between the upper parts of the dies.
     

    Jeepster48439

    Master
    Site Supporter
    Rating - 100%
    7   0   0
    Jan 12, 2012
    1,841
    113
    Marion County
    I recently got into reloading for 9mm. I have the Auto Drum. I weighed every 10th drop and visually inspected every case before seating the bullet. Visually the loads appeared consistent and upon weighing they were within 1/10th of a grain. Measuring 4.7gr of HP38.
     

    Chewie

    Old, Tired, Grumpy, Skeptical
    Site Supporter
    Rating - 100%
    4   0   0
    Dec 28, 2012
    2,071
    113
    Martinsville
    I use the auto drum for unique, blue dot, cfe pistol without issue and pretty consistent (old red hopper with baffle).Accurate #7 leaks out if the drum a lot more than I am comfortable with so I have quit using that. I reload 9, 40, 45 on my lee load master.
     

    DadSmith

    Grandmaster
    Rating - 100%
    1   0   0
    Oct 21, 2018
    10,877
    113
    Ripley county
    I have been using a Lee Pro Auto Disk powder measure my Lee turret press for a long, long time and it has served me well. It has a few shortcomings and I have been looking at the Lee Auto Drum measure as a possible upgrade. For those of you who use one, what are your thoughts, pros and cons?
    I started with the auto disk years ago and switched to the auto drum. It's much more versatile. Think of the perfect powder measure adjustment on top of your turret that automatically drops your powder. It throws most powder pretty close to the charge you are aiming for. I've found it to throw right on most of the time. Now if you are using 800x just set it lower and trickle in the rest. 800x is a pain to use but has outstanding performance.

    I have a habit of testing my powder charge every 10rds just to be sure its within the charge range I want. If not it gets another adjustment.
     

    2in1evtime

    Master
    Site Supporter
    Rating - 100%
    59   0   0
    Oct 30, 2011
    3,114
    113
    retired-midwest
    If you ever have trouble with it no dropping or returning correctly, check where the body connects to the threaded part that screws into the die body, i had couple issues where i had to squeeze mine back in tighter to make it operate properly, you tube has videos on this supposedly lee fixed this issue on later models i got both of mine when they first came out.
     

    DadSmith

    Grandmaster
    Rating - 100%
    1   0   0
    Oct 21, 2018
    10,877
    113
    Ripley county
    If you ever have trouble with it no dropping or returning correctly, check where the body connects to the threaded part that screws into the die body, i had couple issues where i had to squeeze mine back in tighter to make it operate properly, you tube has videos on this supposedly lee fixed this issue on later models i got both of mine when they first came out.
    Can you link to the video? It could be very helpful to many other people.

    My auto drum is about 4 yo now. Is that the newer model?
     

    2in1evtime

    Master
    Site Supporter
    Rating - 100%
    59   0   0
    Oct 30, 2011
    3,114
    113
    retired-midwest

    this is where the issue is and yes i think you may have the earlier versions was told lee did something to fix this but i don't have a new one to compare as i use my dillons for all pistol now
     

    Chewie

    Old, Tired, Grumpy, Skeptical
    Site Supporter
    Rating - 100%
    4   0   0
    Dec 28, 2012
    2,071
    113
    Martinsville
    I have the older version (I believe) and used a worm gear hose clamp to lock it back in place. I noticed that when charging a case with powder the whole dispenser would tilt. Happened on 1 of 3 dispensers, need to get 2 more hose clamps for the other 2 (call it a design improvement). An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure (or preventing a squib).
     

    2in1evtime

    Master
    Site Supporter
    Rating - 100%
    59   0   0
    Oct 30, 2011
    3,114
    113
    retired-midwest
    I may have a newer model. I just tighten it down to adjust until the plastic block runs all the way up for a full stroke.
    I have actually had to use channel locks to squeeze the pot metal back in to lock on the knurled thread part, after doing so it worked fine my 2 were from when they first came out, they work fine after i did what i said i did. i very seldom use them any more but did do 300 rounds of 45lc couple weeks ago
     

    DadSmith

    Grandmaster
    Rating - 100%
    1   0   0
    Oct 21, 2018
    10,877
    113
    Ripley county
    I have actually had to use channel locks to squeeze the pot metal back in to lock on the knurled thread part, after doing so it worked fine my 2 were from when they first came out, they work fine after i did what i said i did. i very seldom use them any more but did do 300 rounds of 45lc couple weeks ago
    No I don't just read the new model came out in 2020.
     

    42253

    Plinker
    Rating - 0%
    0   0   0
    Jan 25, 2019
    114
    28
    Portage
    I use auto disk on all of my pistol calibers. I have 3 and all work fine. I just bought 3 new auto drums for my rifle calibers still need to set them up
     

    sugarcreekbrass

    Expert
    Advertiser
    Rating - 100%
    26   0   0
    Mar 29, 2015
    938
    43
    West central
    I use the auto drum with TiteGroup and LilGun. The only thing that I had to get figured out was tightening the plastic powder drop. If you go too tight it won't return completely. If you go too loose, you lose some powder. I still do lose a little bit of TiteGroup, but like others said, it meters very consistently with the powders I use in it.
     

    Bill2905

    Master
    Site Supporter
    Rating - 100%
    3   0   0
    Feb 1, 2021
    1,780
    113
    Lake County
    As the OP, the responses to my original post were overwhelmingly positive so I dropped a hint to my wife. Predictably, a new Lee Auto Drum measure showed up under the Christmas tree Saturday morning. After an easy set up, I tinkered with it a little and then loaded 100 rounds of 9mm with it yesterday. My initial impression is that it is a nice improvement over the Auto Disk. I have a few extra drums on order so I can set them up for my favorite charges. Appreciate all of the responses to my inquiry.
     

    Bill2905

    Master
    Site Supporter
    Rating - 100%
    3   0   0
    Feb 1, 2021
    1,780
    113
    Lake County
    Been using one for about three years. It handles flake and stick powder well but a fine ball like win296 leaks everywhere.
    I tested my new Auto Drum with W296 the other night and it leaked all over the place. I couldn't get the finger nut any tighter with hand tightening so I gently gripped it with a pair of pliers and tightened it up a little more, a quarter turn or less. Problem solved, at least in my limited testing of it.
     

    Fixer

    Expert
    Rating - 95.8%
    23   1   0
    Nov 22, 2009
    1,050
    48
    Fort Wayne Area
    I have a couple that I have been using for a year or so. I have minimal leakage from the fine ball powders. It has thrown really consistent charges on my turret press. I just finished up the last of my 5.7x28 that I needed to load. Checking on the beam scale about every 10th round, I didn't see hardly any deviation from start to finish. I didn't get an exact measure on some that were just under or over the line after the first couple. Most were within +-.1 grain. I usually don't load to max with any auto powder drop so a small deviation like that is acceptable.
     
    Top Bottom