Mark 7 Auto-drive

Got home last night to find that UPS finally learned how to deliver a package to my house.  I immediately changed clothes and grabbed the package and headed into the mancave.  I had already prepped the 1050 and removed it from my bench and redid the cable routing of the casefeeder and Mr. Bulletfeeder to avoid electrical interference issues.  So I cut open the box and started removing parts.  Only issue was the ziplock baggie containing the hardware wasn’t secured shut and some bolts and things fell into the main box, including a 3/8″ nut that I later had to dig through the box to locate.

I took the base of the Mark 7 to my bench and removed the rubber feet from the plate as I decided before hand that I was going to bolt it down to my overbuilt bench.  I squared it up and ensured it was level.  I marked my holes and drilled through the bench.  I used 1/4-20 bolts that had previously been holding the press to the bench and locked it down.  I grabbed the 1050 and mounted it to the base, and installed the pulley which is when I discovered I didn’t have the 3/8″ nut.  I finally found it in the bottom of the large box it shipped in. Once the pulley was installed I lowered the ram and installed the belt and tightened it and locked it down.  I reinstalled the casefeeder and the Mr. Bulletfeeder putting the EMI filters on the cables and at the switch. I mounted the tablet, and plugged everything in, and powered it up.  Everything looked good so I did a calibration which worked well, and turned on the Mr. Bulletfeeder and casefeeder and hit run with no brass to see if there was any electrical interference with the tablet.  All good.

I loaded up the powder measure, some brass, bullets and loaded all 10 of my primer tubes.  I started the press up and had to adjust the clutch to 2 to get it to run through the sizing die.  After it dropped powder, I verified that my charge weight was correct and adjusted the belling of the case a bit.  Off to the races.

I started at the 900 rounds an hour setting and after the first 100 passed the Hundo gauge and I confirmed everything was working right, I took it to 1200 rounds an hour.  That worked great so I pushed it to 1500 rounds an hour and it ran that speed for the entire run.

Only issue I had was my well used Dillon powder measure adjustment bolt started to move on me and I noticed that my powder charge started going from 3.8 grains to 3.5 grains.  As it was practice ammo I wasn’t concerned and later removed the measure and pulled the charge bar and cleaned it up and loctited the bolt and let it dry over night.  If it doesn’t hold, I have a spare charge bar I will install.

Near the end of the run, I started to get a squeak from the press as it is do for a strip down for cleaning and lubrication as it has loaded over 10k.  I will do that tonight, but I have to stop and get a grease gun for the zerk.  I did have 2 .380 cases go through the press, both decapped, reprimed, and got powder charges, but no bullet as it didn’t activate the Mr. Bulletfeeder.  So a little powder spillage when the brass fell into the bin, but it didn’t lock anything up as they ran through the shell plate with no issues.

Final thoughts:

This thing is tits!  I am so happy with the purchase, and I hope that it runs this well throughout my lifetime.  I will pickup the PRIMERSense for it so it will stop itself when the Dillon primer alarm sounds so I don’t have to monitor it as close as I did last night.  I was able to clean up my mancave while the press was doing its thing, so I didn’t stand there watching it like a hawk.  I do have complete confidence in it though.  I do have previous manufacturing press setup experience though so it made it really easy for me to get running off the bat, that and I had the 1050 running beautifully before I mounted the Mark 7.


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