Dillon Super 1050 installation

I didn’t get a chance to do an “install” review with my 650, so I figured I’d give you a look at what the installation of the new Super 1050 looks like. Like every other Dillon press I’ve installed, it goes pretty smoothly if you actually follow the directions. I managed to do that this time – I promise you, it took all of my self control! It makes for an impressive piece of kit on the bench. Hit the jump to see more…

If you’re a fan of Dillon reloading equipment, the 1050 is the holy grail. Boasting an impressive 1000-1200 rounds per hour, it’s a serious piece of kit. It arrives in a rather large, plain cardboard box, unlike the other Dillon blue emblazoned packing materials the other presses get to travel in. The box really wouldn’t have to be any bigger than a 650 box (which is, admittedly, pretty large), except that nestled inside it is a 650/1050 casefeeder. With a 650, the casefeeder comes separately, so there’s no need for the enlarged box.

The Super 1050 comes with a Dillon die set pre-installed and set to load SAAMI spec ammo from the factory. Dillon includes a loaded dummy round (no powder or primer) and a primed case (no bullet or powder) to demonstrate the factory settings for bullet seating, crimp, and primer depth. With a press as complicated as a 1050, any time savings is appreciated, and this certainly helps. It’s also useful to note that the cost of at least one die set is included in the price of the press. Of course, I’m going to go and futz the whole thing up in order to install my Redding Competition Seat Die, but those are the breaks, I suppose. For now, the Dillon seat die will move to station 6, and will be set to just start the bullet down into the case. Later, it’ll be removed to make room for a bullet feeder die!

The 1050′s cast iron frame feels about as solid as you’d expect from a piece of equipment with that sort of price tag. It’s certainly heavy, anyway, but it does give the press a feel of authority when you first set it on your bench to mark holes to drill. The first goal is to locate the press in such a fashion that the handle will have full travel and not run into the front lip of the bench. You have to keep in mind that the press is actually in the “down” position, unlike what the diagram in the manual shows you in Figure 2 on page 8 of the Super 1050 manual. You have to stuff the handle in to make sure that it can clear the bench, but make sure you also lower it completely – while the press is zip tied in this position, it has some leeway, and may have backed off a taste from the “full down” position. Ok, press placed, ready to mark the holes…

It’s at this point that I realized I really wished Dillon would’ve provided a template for marking the hole locations in the bench top. The holes in the press frame are too small and deep to fit any marking device I own down inside to mark the spot on the bench. See that pen Dillon shows being used in Figure 1 on page 8? Ha! Good luck! I have the same Bic Round Stic pen, and can tell you for certain it isn’t get to fit all the way down to actually be able to mark the bench. Dillon is so good about covering the details, and knowing what works with their equipment, I really find this to be a sub-par job on their part – show us something that actually works, maybe? Sorry, guys, if this is a little harsh – I’m still a Dillon fanboi and all, but this one was a little silly… A marking template would’ve fixed this entirely for us… Or a provided marking device that actually fits all the way down the holes…

I finally managed to mark the holes by using a … (WARNING: what you’re about to read is a really poor, not recommended, jury rigged approach) … small nail set that I tapped several times with a hammer inside each hole. This was imperfect, though, in that the back right corner is not so accessible to that method, and my mark turned out to be off slightly due to the angle the nail set was at… This caused my hole to be off center, which made it a “no-go” situation. Embarrassingly, I had to “wallow” out the hole somewhat in order to allow the mounting kit bolt to drop through. Le sigh… I really dislike doing things the wrong way, and performing sloppy installations, and that probably explains why I’m so perturbed about the whole “marking the mounting hole” situation. Anyhow, moving on…

Holes drilled, press secured tightly with four bolts. Goody. Secure the handle, grab hold, cut the large black zip ties, and raise the handle. Bam, we’re in business! Operating the handle a few times, the press moved very easily, and felt very solid. Excellent. Then you proceed through the rest of the install, just as the instructions suggest.

I had a couple of other minor hangups. Unlike the other presses, Dillon supplies a set of blue tabs that attach to the station locator pins with the 1050. One of these tabs is smaller than all the others, and there’s no indication which station it belongs in. The only one that seemed to make sense to me was station 5 – it’s proximity to the main spring assembly at the back of the press, and the fact that the tab has to basically fit into a cutout in the press frame seems to make sense. Also, view the “Station 5″ picture on page 11 of the manual? Doesn’t the tab there look smaller?

The second hangup was my fault – I missed installing the Bin Support Bracket (part 10991) when I assembled the caseefeed mounting post assembly, so I had to take some things back apart and re-assemble…

Finally, I received a part made out of what appears to be Delrin that was on the Powder Bar Return Rod. It looked quite a bit like the bushings on the 550 and 650 that their respective bars travel through, but there’s no place for it on the 1050 – it doesn’t appear in any of the diagrams, and doesn’t seem to fit into the Return Rod Eyebolt, or anything like that. For the moment, it’s uninstalled. At some point, I’ll call Dillon and ask what the guy is supposed to do…

I also bought the low powder warning sensor and the optional bullet tray, so both of those were installed along the way, as well.

By the way, if you’re looking to buy a Dillon Press or other Dillon accessories, I can’t recommend enough that you buy them through Brian Enos’s online store. Brian’s customer service is extremely excellent, and he’ll both save you on shipping and help you insure that you’re getting the right products for your needs.

About the author


USPSA Grand Master, NRA Instructor, http://re-gun.com/about/

Permanent link to this article: http://re-gun.com/2012/01/dillon-super-1050-installation/

1 comment

1 ping

  1. Lee says:

    Use a 1/4″ brad point drill bit for marking the holes. Just remove it from the drill, place it in each hole and twist it a few times. It will leave a dimple in the work surface. Then chuck it in the drill and the bit will naturally slip into the dimple.

  1. DR Performance says:

    New blog post – Dillon Super 1050 installation review! http://t.co/oNbVti5W

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