• January 29, 2020

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Best Powder Scales For Reloading-Ultimate Buying Guide With Reviews

Best Powder Scales

Four Best Powder Scales For Reloading

7 Known Things You Must Read Before Buy Best Powder Scales For Reloading

Many can agree with me when I say that a weekend hobby for some is spending time at the range. Of these individuals that spend time there, quite a few will be in favor of using a digital powder scale. This is because one can be more accurate with their shooting when the ammo they are using is the correct measurement and weight. Your shooting can be fine-tuned once you find the best powder scale for reloading.

It can be quite a challenge to find the best digital powder scale as there are so many on the market.  The process is often a long one, as each scale has its own pros and cons.  It is often overwhelming to sift through so much information to make an educated guess on which one is right for you and your needs.



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Factors To Consider Before Purchasing A Powder Scale

There are a few key pieces to consider before purchasing a reloading scale. The process of purchasing a powder scale can be very tedious; however if you know what to look for, the process becomes quite a bit easier.  Here are some factors to consider so you get the most bang for your buck when you purchase a reloading scale.

  • Ease of use: Some scales will have auto calibration, which makes it very easy to use. However, if this is not the case, you will want to ensure that it is easy to calibrate it.  After it is calibrated, you will need to fill load the powder tray, measuring it.  These measurements will be displayed on an LCD screen.  Make sure that the LCD screen is easy to read.  It should also display not only the weight, but also the unit (gram, grain, ounce, or carat).  In many scales, this is something that can be changed by the user according to the preference of unit used.
  • Weight: The best powder scales for reloading will have a decent weight that will make them portable. This goes without saying that not all scales that are lightweight are the best.  Some of the heavier models will be an excellent choice for some individuals.  It is just a matter of how easy it is for you to transport and carry around.  If you can manage to find a method to lug around a heavier powder scale, it could be more beneficial to you as sometimes larger scales have additional features that may interest you.
  • Accuracy: The best digital powder scale will be very accurate. The measurement should be within 0.1 gram of the actual measurement.
  • Price: Price is a factor that often weighs heavily on which reloading scale to purchase. Some of the higher priced models have the best features, although the best inexpensive digital powder scale may still come with extra features that will fit into your hobby just fine.
  • Durability: The best digital powder scale will be very durable. It will be made with the highest quality materials, so it lasts for years to come.
  • Extra Features: Many of the best affordable digital powder scales on the market today will have extra features that really appeal to customers. These could range from measuring bowls and pots that are removable to coming with dust covers to protect from dust, grease, and dirt.
  • Speed: How fast a powder scale is can be crucial for those that are in a hurry to get loaded and be done. Some models that are on the inexpensive side may take longer to give data that is accurate.  It can be aggravating waiting for the data to be displayed on the screen, watching the numbers jump until it has been settled.

The Four Best Powder Scales For Reloading

There is plenty of reloading scales available today that feature different prices, sizes and weights, and quality.  Here are four of the best inexpensive digital powder scales on the market today.

Frankford Arsenal DS-750 Digital Reloading Scale

This griddle makes the best outdoor gas griddle list as it is portable. Measuring 17 inches, this griddle heats up fast. It has a stainless steel “H” burner which as a 12,000 BTU heat output.  The tabletop griddle is great for camping trips, picnics, and trips to the beach.  It is small enough to leave in the camper, yet large enough to cook a meal. I appreciate that it is very easy to clean up. A quick swipe of a paper towel is all the griddle needs once cooking has ceased. The griddle has a black powder coating with stainless steel construction and a cold-rolled steel cooking surface.  Another reason this is one of the best gas outdoor griddles because you can take this to the ball field with you.  My sister would love this griddle to use after baseball tournaments to grill up some hot dogs to serve to the kids.  After games, they are famished and need a good meal, and this would be suitable for hot dogs for a quick bite to eat.

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What We Like

  • Lightweight and easy to transport
  • Measures in gram, ounce, carat, and grain
  • Comes with 2 tools
  • Basic and simple option
  • Very efficient
  • Easy to read with a large backlit display
  • Comes from a trusted company
  • Has an automatic shut off feature if there are 60 seconds of inactivity

What We Did Not Like

  • No way to protect the loose powder
  • Not intended for massive scale work
  • Bag it comes with is not the best at protecting the scale
  • Scale has a tendency to drift

Hornady 050108 Electronic Scale

This scale is featured on the 4 best powder scales for reloading as it has a 1500 grain capacity. Anyone can appreciate this capacity as it holds a lot of powder. It uses the same precision load cell as some of their higher priced models. It includes two calibration weights. This electronic scale only weighs 2.2 pounds. The scale comes with an AC adapter, a metal powder pan, and a 220V adapter. The LCD screen is large enough to read, which makes it quite handy for those that have trouble with smaller screens. I know that my uncle really appreciates this feature as his eyesight has taken a turn for the worse the past few years. Hornady also offers a one year warranty on this scale

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What We Like

  • Lightweight
  • Has a large LCD screen
  • Has a solid feel to it
  • Great quality
  • Easy to set up
  • Makes a great addition to your loading bench
  • Can also weigh cases, bullets, cartridges, and more
  • Only has 4 buttons to navigate (on/off, zero, calibration, and the unit button)
  • Has a finish on it that does not easily get marred?

What We Did Not Like

  • Is not always the most accurate
  • There is a limited viewing angle for the screen
  • Tends to be finicky
  • There is no place for a battery
  • Buttons feel on the cheap side
  • The cover is made from plastic

RCBS Combo 110V-AC Chargemaster

This makes the 4 best digital powder scale list as it is made from high quality materials.  This scale is very accurate, and the speed is phenomenal.  It has a 1500 grain capacity.  This combo also comes with an electronic powder trickier.  The combo can be operated manually or on auto.  It comes pre-assembled, which makes it very precise with great speed.

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What We Like

  • High hopper capacity
  • Can store up to 30 loads in memory
  • Has a powder drain
  • Features a front to back layout
  • Well built
  • Very easy to clean

What We Did Not Like

  • Can not be used with black powder (smokeless powder only)
  • Dispensing can be untimely
  • Scale had a hard time holding at zero
  • Numbers down the middle do not work properly after some time (a company is aware of the issue, but were not willing to fix unless customer paid for a new one to be sent out)
  • The combo is not as fast as it could be

American Weigh Scales GEMINI-20 Portable Milligram Scale

This scale rounds out the 4 best digital powder scale list. It is powered by 3 AAA batteries. It weighs up to 20 grams in .001 gram increments. A carrying case is included with the purchase, as is a pair of tweezers, a tray, and the calibration weight. It features a flip down shield that protects the delicate weighing surface. I really appreciate the 10-year warranty. It has separate on and off buttons and has an easy four key operation, complete with a user’s guide. It allows six different measurements of weight (gram, ounce, carat, troy ounce, pennyweights, and giganewtons).

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What We Like

  • Portable
  • Very low price
  • Flip down shield
  • Has a 10-year warranty
  • Easy four key operation
  • Allows six different measurements

What We Did Not Like

  • Has a low capacity
  • Does not have any ac power
  • May not be accurate depending on where it is placed

Why Powder Scales For Reloading Are Essential

To those that have never used a digital powder scale for reloading, they may think they are not needed.  This is the furthest thing from the truth.  Once you have used a powder scale, you will never want to not use one.

  • You must use a good reloading scale each time you reload. When you reload and use a scale, it will ensure that you will be able to get the maximum potential out of rounds shot!
  • Ammo is very expensive. Investing in a high-quality digital reloading scale can save you money in the long run.

Types Of Powder Scales

When in the market for a reloading scale, you will be faced with the choice of purchasing either a manual reloading scale or a digital reloading scale.   This is often a hard decision for many to think about, as both digital and mechanical both have pros and cons associated with them.

Digital Reloading scale

 Digital reloading scales are very popular right now. They have a faster-operating speed and can calculate the weight of the powder within a short amount of time.  They often have extra features, such as built-in memory.

Mechanical Reloading Scale

A mechanical reloading scale is often much cheaper than the digital version. This type of scale is usually very durable and still uses a dampening system to measure with.  With a mechanical reloading scale, one will physically have to adjust the scale to achieve the desired weight of the powder.  This can be a very timely practice.  A mechanical reloading scale needs no electricity for it to work. Thus there is no possibility of having an electronic malfunction.

Tips For Using Digital Powder Scales

Many underestimate the power of a good digital scale.  They do not only have to be used for weighing out your powder! You can put this scale to good use in your home as well.  Use your scale to weigh the precious gems that you may collect.  It can weigh jewelry as well.  Or if you are uncertain how much postage to place on an envelope, you can weigh the envelope to figure out the correct postage!

If your digital scale does not come with a  protective cover, this is a wise investment.  This will keep grease and dirt from collecting on it, which will make it last longer.  Clean the scale on a regular basis.  You can use a gentle puff of air or a soft paintbrush for this.  It does not take much time to clean and will keep the scale performing it’s best.

While on the subject of cleaning, you will notice that your powder pan will build up a residue after continued use.  The simplest way to clean this is with a mild detergent and water.  Never use anything that is harsh and will scratch it.  Should this pan become scratched, it could the powder to cling onto the pans.  And speaking of pans, metallic ones may be more beneficial to use than plastic ones.  A metallic pan will not hold static, does not need to be cleaned as frequently as plastic pans do, and powder grains easily slide off of them.

When using your digital powder scale, you must remember to keep it on a surface that is steady and stable.  While weighing the powder, it is best to keep the surface in use for only this task.  Vibrations from other tasks could make the scale inaccurate.  You will also want to allow the powder scale to warm up before using it, especially if it is in a cold area, to begin with.  If you use the scale when it is cold, an inaccurate reading could possibly be given.

Batteries also matter when it comes to scales.  It is best to place a fresh battery in your scale every 5 or 6 months.  Batteries that are on their way to becoming dead can give readings that are not on the accurate side.  It is also advised to use a good battery.  Sure, we have all seen batteries that come from the dollar store, but this is not the place to use one of those batteries.

Do not be afraid to use the zero button, which can also be referred to as the tare button.  If you want the absolute best measurement, use it before each and every measurement.  This will ensure that the scale is giving its best.  Always remember to center the load each time as well.  This will prevent errors, as an off-center load gives bindings of the load cell.

You will also want to make sure when loading the scale that no air is going across it.  If the powder scale is subject to having a breeze blow across it, you may desire to find a new place to reload, or you might wish to look into using a cover on it to protect it from the moving air.  If there is air blowing across it, you may not receive an accurate reading.

Final Verdict

This list of the four best digital powder scales is very helpful in finding the loading scale that is right for you.  There are many different scales on the market today that make it a very hard choice in finding the right one for your needs.  Using the criteria listed above can help anyone make an informed decision when the time comes to purchase the best powder scale for reloading.

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