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I thought that it might be a good idea to start a thread on the Lee Pro 1000 progressive press. Mostly to share what I have learned over the past couple of years, and hopefully pick up some pointers from other owners.

Dave

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I chose to set my Pro 1000 back into the bench, if you will. I cut a notch 2 3/8" wide by 3" deep. Then I mounted a small plastic container under the bench to catch spent primers.

Dave

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I had two issues with the Pro 1000 bullet feeder, right out of the starting gate.

1) The feeder would start its upward travel, to the seating die, before it had extended all the way under the die. One of two things would then happen. Well, actually both things would happen most of the time! First the bullet would be knocked out of the bullet feeder fingers and / or the bullet feeder fingers would get pinched between the shell plate and the "rim" of the seating die. I do not care to recall how many feeder fingers a crushed! In the first picture you can see the problem.

I decided to try adding a bit of weight to the bullet feeder, in hopes it would not start upward travel until directly under the seating die. After good old trial and error I found that 2.5 ounces did the trick. So, I removed the 8-32 screw that attaches the feeder fingers to the feeder and installed a 3/4" long screw. This screw extends out the bottom of the feeder (as seen in the first photo). I then took a piece of 3/4" steel round stock, 1 1/4" long, and drilled and tapped an 8-32 hole. Having threaded this 2.5 ounce weight onto the protruding screw, I was able to solve the problem. In fact, the bullet feeder is now one of the most trouble-free parts of the press. It has yet to fail!

2) My second problem with the bullet feeder isn't so much a problem with the feeder itself, but with the bullets I am loading. I am using 40 caliber, 180 grain Presision Delta bullets, and as those of you who are familiar know, these bullets have a "depression" in the base. Well, if you stack enough of them on top one another the nose of the bottom bullet is impossible for the feeder fingers to pull out of said depression. I have found that I can only stack 17 bullets in each tube. In fact, I cut the tubes down so I can not over fill.

Dave

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Edited by Reshoot
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I had two issues with the Pro 1000 bullet feeder, right out of the starting gate.

1) The feeder would start its upward travel, to the seating die, before it had extended all the way under the die. One of two things would then happen. Well, actually both things would happen most of the time! First the bullet would be knocked out of the bullet feeder fingers and / or the bullet feeder fingers would get pinched between the shell plate and the "rim" of the seating die. I do not care to recall how many feeder fingers a crushed! In the first picture you can see the problem.

I decided to try adding a bit of weight to the bullet feeder, in hopes it would not start upward travel until directly under the seating die. After good old trial and error I found that 2.5 ounces did the trick. So, I removed the 8-32 screw that attaches the feeder fingers to the feeder and installed a 3/4" long screw. This screw extends out the bottom of the feeder (as seen in the first photo). I then took a piece of 3/4" steel round stock, 1 1/4" long, and drilled and tapped an 8-32 hole. Having threaded this 2.5 ounce weight onto the protruding screw, I was able to solve the problem. In fact, the bullet feeder is now one of the most trouble-free parts of the press. It has yet to fail!

2) My second problem with the bullet feeder isn't so much a problem with the feeder itself, but with the bullets I am loading. I am using 40 caliber, 180 grain Presision Delta bullets, and as those of you who are familiar know, these bullets have a "depression" in the base. Well, if you stack enough of them on top one another the nose of the bottom bullet is impossible for the feeder fingers to pull out of said depression. I have found that I can only stack 17 bullets in each tube. In fact, I cut the tubes down so I can not over fill.

Dave

I have had the same problem with my loadmaster. I am glad to know that the fingers can be replaced. for the weight I used a 45round nose and that was enough for my 40 setup. For the (mm setup it was not enough but a 6"cresent wrench hanging from the back works real good. I do like your setup better I must say!

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Yeah, Brian, the feed fingers are easily replaced. Good thing! Ha! Lee charges $3.00 for either the large or small.

I load 40 caliber only in this particular press, the only one I have right now with a bullet feeder. So, I have yet to discover the different weights needed for other calibers. Glad to hear you have the 9mm's working good.

Dave

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Issues with the priming system? Oh yeah, I've had a couple. One I fixed, and the other I have learned to live with. I have also learned to "feel" every primer seat. This is pretty important!

Once the primer level is half way down the feed tube there is not enough pressure (from the remaining primers) to push a primer over the primer seating pin. If I allow the primer level to get this low, do not pay attention to the feel of a primer seating and then raise the shell plate to accept a powder charge, I have a mess. As in powder trickling out the flash hole and down into the shell plate, primers in the tube and elsewhere. Not fun to clean up! And, if I do not clean all that powder out the priming system it will not work properly.

I now watch my primer tray very closely, and when I can see the last primer in the tube I refill the primer tray. Problem solved! When I do my part the system does a good job. I have loaded thousands of rounds in this Pro 1000, over the past 2 ~ 3 years and only once seated a primer crooked. Well, sideways actually :o

The second issue I had with the priming system was primers "bridging" across the primer tray exit. You know, a jamb that kept primers from falling down into the primer tube. The pin in the primer tube that rubs against the ribed post, to shake the primer tray, was not enough to keep this from happening. However, there is a very easy fix for this! CAREFULLY cut the corners off the primer tray exit, creating a funnel, and the primers will never jamb again. I have attached pics to make this more clear.

Dave

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Edited by Reshoot
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The second issue I had with the priming system was primers "bridging" across the primer tray exit. You know, a jamb that kept primers from falling down into the primer tube. The pin in the primer tube that rubs against the ribed post, to shake the primer tray, was not enough to keep this from happening. However, there is a very easy fix for this! CAREFULLY cut the corners off the primer tray exit, creating a funnel, and the primers will never jamb again. I have attached pics to make this more clear.

I modified my primer tray to match the picture but am not getting the improvement I had hoped for. I am going to work on it again and try to ensure that the funneling starts when the the width is that of exactly three primers, letting the middle one fall. I am using a very sharp, small chisel in an attempt to disturb the area as little as possible. Any tips?

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I used to have one of these presses. Biggest issue for me was the priming system.

I ended up decapping and sizing on a single stage, hand priming, then using the Pro1000 for the final 2 stages. I guess that makes it a Pro666.

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I used to have one of these presses. Biggest issue for me was the priming system.

I ended up decapping and sizing on a single stage, hand priming, then using the Pro1000 for the final 2 stages. I guess that makes it a Pro666.

Actually, you could still do sizing on the Pro1000. Just remove the decapping pin and feed primed cases. There is a universal decapping die that is faster without the sizing.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I used to have one of these presses. Biggest issue for me was the priming system.

I ended up decapping and sizing on a single stage, hand priming, then using the Pro1000 for the final 2 stages. I guess that makes it a Pro666.

I dunno why you had such a problem. I ran 250 (40 caliber) through a Pro 1000 last night. The priming system worked flawless - 250 perfectly seated primers.

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Speaking of last night, it was the first time my case feeder has been empty for a while. So, I took the opportunity to snap some pics, to explain how I fixed the problem of 40 caliber brass jambing. All too often when a 40 caliber brass falls at the bottom of the case feeder the one on top of it will fall in such a way that its rim is partially in the case mouth of the one below. Thus, the feeder will jamb.

The large tubes that come with the Lee case feeder are prefect for 45 ACP, and the small insert tubes do a fine job on 9mm. But, when it comes to 40 brass the large tube is too big. In the attached pics you will see how 40 brass stacks, or rather fails to stack.

I fixed this problem by taking excess tube for a bullet feeder and inserting it into the bottom of the case feed tubes. First, I cut the heavy-walled bullet feed tube into 1 1/2" lengths (4 of them). Them I cut these length-wise twice, to remove about 1/16" of material. I filed and sanded this "slot" until I could compress the tube to a point it would snugly fit into the bottom of the case feeder tubes. But, before inserting them I used my Dremel tool to cut a chamfer on the top end. This is necessary to prevent a case rim from catching as it feeds down the tube. I did not glue these inserts in, but rather made the fit snug enough that they will not work out.

The final inside diameter, of the last 1 1/2" of the case feed tubes, is now .450". I should also point out that 40S&W is all that I load in this particular Pro 1000. Therefore, I do not take these inserts out.

I hope that I was able to make this understandable, and the pics help. Oh, the pic with three tubes is showing (left to right) 9mm, 45ACP and 40S&W.

Dave

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  • 1 month later...

I think the Lee shell feeder is the best thing since progressive presses when loading 9mm or 45acp. With 40, it was not nearly as smooth. Shell pusher kept knocking over the shell or shell being pushed got caught on the next shell's base.

Comparing the setup for 9mm or 45 with the 40, I realized that it was because the feeder and pusher was designed for a variety of shell dimensions and the small pusher optimum for 9 and the large optimum for 45. That got me thinking how I could change that. Since I use multiple loaders, each setup for a single caliber, I decided to modify a pusher and a shell feeder for 40.

I first had a bushing made out of aluminum to the 40's dimension kind of the way the bushing is on the shell feeder for small shells and how it fits a 9mm shell. It did not allow the shells to cant or tilt in the feeder. Also added some strips of lexan to the top of the pusher until it was the same height as the 40 shell. If you sit a 9 shell next to the small pusher, it is even with the top or if you set a 45acp shell next to the large pusher, it again is even with the top. So add sheets of hard/flat material like lexan to the top of a shell pusher until it is the same height as the 40's shell.

I now have hardly any situations where the pusher jams or knocked over shells...

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  • 1 month later...

This is a great thread.

I just picked up a Pro 1k from a buddy of mine because he "upgraded" to a Hornady LNL progressive

he did a few modifications to it also.

I will take pics soon to show what he did to make loading more reliable and fun.

I will also try some of the mods listed above.

I will load 9mm exclusively in it. I noticed talk about case feeder inserts. I dont have them, are they cheap?

lets keep this thread alive. He put 10k rounds through this press last year so i know it CAN work well.

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What caliber was the previous owner loading? For 9mm you will need to insert the small case feeder tubes into the large tubes.

Dave

he was loading 9mm also.

i do not have the smaller tube inserts. he never ran them but didnt have problems either.

he said when he bought it, it was a 9mm kit. perhaps the tubes are in there and i cant see them?

i havent loaded on it yet, i need to pick up a scale. (my other buddy is giving me his dillon balance scale this week)

i promise i will take pics soon

i did notice that the OP's press has an EXTRA piece below the case feeder. im not sure what that is as mine doesn't have it.

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i did notice that the OP's press has an EXTRA piece below the case feeder. im not sure what that is as mine doesn't have it.

That means yours is the large case feeder, ideally for .45 ACP. I have both sizes, so I know what I am saying.

after looking at the OPs pics i see that the EXTRA piece is a round counter. LOL. no wonder why i dont have it.

i will order the "small" inserts for the case feeder tubes, but it does have the small case pusher that loads the cases onto the shellplate.

I tried to post pics of my mods but this board will not allow shutterfly pics to be posted i guess.

Edited by Jeremy
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  • 6 months later...

Great thread, I am slowly getting my Pro 1000 into shape. I didn't realize that the metal rod sticking through the primer trough was supposed to rub on the support rail! I will have to readjust mine and see how much of a difference it makes.

Craig

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Great thread, I am slowly getting my Pro 1000 into shape. I didn't realize that the metal rod sticking through the primer trough was supposed to rub on the support rail! I will have to readjust mine and see how much of a difference it makes.

Craig

Yeah, the pin rubs against that grooved back post and acts as a shaker for the primer tray / trough. Also, I suggest never putting more than 100 primers in the tray at one time (I do not even put that many in). The more weight, the bigger chance of a jamb where the primers enter the trough.

I fill the primer tray, case feeder and bullet feeder with the same number of conponents. Why? Well, when I see the bullet feeder grab the last bullet I know it is time to fill everything up, and check powder level. This prevents me from running out of primers, and that is the last thing you want to happen.

Some feel the priming system, on this press, is flawed / unreliable. I contend that to simply not true. If one allows the primer level to get half way down the trough the system will fail. At that point there is not enough weight to push a primer onto the priming pin. This, in my opinion, is operator error not system faliure. I have loaded as many as 500 rounds without a single priming system faliure.

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having had a 9mm and a 45 pro 1k, the 45 is heads above the 9mm version. Just watch the primers and bolt it to a STURDY bench and it should all work. One of the problems I have had is that some 45, the rim is thicker and won't slide into the shell plate.

Other than that,its been GTG

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  • 1 month later...

Hi Guys

I am new to reloading, and i bought the Pro 1000 in .40 S&W

i have reloaded about 600 rounds so far, but with plenty of frustration #@*%*@^%

and i am having problems with the primer feeder...

i have used graphite powder, i keep it full, but still every 10 or so times

the primer doesn't feed a primer and i have powder through the flash hole...

I use a blower to blow the powder out, is that enough or do i have to lift the

turret off and unscrew the shell plate holder and clean everything? i have tried

both ways but still having a mess every so often, other times i will go through 50-70 rd.

no problem....

so basically, what else can i do about the primer feeder

Thanks

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Hi Guys

I am new to reloading, and i bought the Pro 1000 in .40 S&W

i have reloaded about 600 rounds so far, but with plenty of frustration #@*%*@^%

and i am having problems with the primer feeder...

i have used graphite powder, i keep it full, but still every 10 or so times

the primer doesn't feed a primer and i have powder through the flash hole...

I use a blower to blow the powder out, is that enough or do i have to lift the

turret off and unscrew the shell plate holder and clean everything? i have tried

both ways but still having a mess every so often, other times i will go through 50-70 rd.

no problem....

so basically, what else can i do about the primer feeder

Thanks

Never put more than 100 primers in the primer tray.

Cycle the press and watch the primer tray for visable shaking. If it does not shake noticeably, there is a problem with those two pins that travel up and down the right rear post.

Make certain the primer seating plunger moves up and down freely by pushing it up with your finger from underneath. You will feel the resistance of the spring that returns it to the bottom of its stroke.

With primers in the system, and no brass in the shell plate, cycle the press up about 1/3 stroke. Now, trip the plunger latch with your finger while watching the primer as it is pushed (by the other primers) onto the top of the plunger. (you should hear the plunger "snap" down when you trip the latch) The primers should move smoothly. You can move the ram back down and remove the primer from the top of the plunger with a pair of tweezers. Continue doing this and see if you can get the system to malfunction. Hopefully it will become apparent why the primer does not smoothly slide onto the top of the plunger.

I never use any type of lube in the primer trough. I do occasionally empty it and wipe it out with q tips.

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