There is a familiar proverb in carpentry; measure twice and cut once. The phrase denotes the idea of checking one’s measurements accurately before cutting a piece of wood or material.
When you are thinking about reloading equipment, however, the phrase should most probably be – measure twice and load once.
If you do not want to manually weigh and then administer the powder for every single round that you reload, then you should think about investing in the best powder measure.
But what is best really? Well, we think it is a matter of perspective. However, that does not mean that we will not help you make your purchasing decision.
Top 5 Best Reloading Powder Measure Reviews
Powder, Reload. Boom! And it will be as easy as that for you to choose your powder measure with our review. So, let us get started.
1. Lee Precision Perfect Powder Measure
When deer season arrives, you should focus more on how to take the perfect shot against the hoofed ruminant mammals. That perfect shot requires a good reload.
For that good reload, you are looking for a highly accurate ammunition, which you can achieve when you get precise results repeatedly. Lee Precision gives that consistency you require.
This powder measure is perfect for reloading rifle cases and certain types of pistol cases. We recommend it for the rifle ones though, unless you are Jason Bourne in the streets of Turkey.
All you have to do is load the hopper with the powder and then dispense the powder using a lever. You can either load it into a funnel or directly into a case mouth. We have had great success in filling up the load without much spillage, as testimony to Lee Precision’s quality.
You can determine the powder’s weight by adjusting a rotating meter. We discovered that we had to fine-tune the adjustment for a while before we could reach the powder weight that we wanted. However, once we nailed the right measurement, we did not have to touch the powder measurer again.
Through this consistency, you can greatly increase the number of rounds you load per hour.
The device is also easy to utilize and gives you a degree of convenience. You have the option of clamping it to a table or screwing it to a surface. Either way, you can use the powder measure in a manner that suits you best.
We recommend Lee Precision for anyone who is out to get started on powder measures. It is easy to use and provides consistency, both of which you will require for the perfect reload.
- Convenient setup
- Great value for the price
- Suits beginners really well
- Takes time to calibrate
- Not fast enough for professional requirements
2. Hornady Lock-N-Load Powder Measure
Our first suggestion to you folks – before you begin using the Lock-N-Load – is to make sure you clean and degrease the device thoroughly. We realized that the device works best after the pre-setup maintenance.
With that handy tip, let us move on to the features.
One noticeable advantage of the Hornady is that it prevents many leakages. With other powder measures, you will find leakages when using fine powder. The Lock-N-Load has zero leaking and when coupled with the pistol rotor, provides accurate charges.
The Lock-N-Load has impressive quality. Its construction is solid and looks pleasing. It also comes with an optional stand, which we were eager to try out. When we mounted the device on the stand, we were in for another pleasant surprise.
The powder measure catches on to the stand like a vice. The arrangement is solid, and the operation is smooth. It almost feels like something out of the Transformers movie. In fact, we might just call the Hornady Lock-N-Load “Optimus Prime”.
When it comes to accuracy, the Hornady is impressive. We tried it with the Winchester 650 ball powder, and we got precise measurements. Next, we used an unconventional product – sugar!
That is right. Sugar has an almost similar consistency to gunpowder. Our measurements were off a few times, but with minor adjustments, we started getting results that are more accurate. However, we did find this to be a rather tedious process.
The powder measure comes equipped with case tubes. Compared to a funnel, this is a better alternative. Using the tubes, we were able to fit most cases for reloading.
Hornady is a time-saver and an impressive tool for the powder measure.
- Easy to use
- A beautiful design that you cannot take your eyes off
- Lengthy setup process
- Not beginner friendly
3. RCBS Uniflow Powder Measure
Are we ready to unveil the best powder measure for reloading? Not quite. All of the products on this list have their own advantages and disadvantages.
With the RCBS, we were able to load large caliber rounds (such as the .308) quickly and accurately. When we switched to pistol calibers, we found that we could repeat the results.
What sets it apart from the other powder measures on this list? For one thing, it was relatively easier to make small corrections to the measurements.
The Uniflow dispenses powder consistently and evenly. When we switched to small powders, there was no leaking. This is important when you are looking to switch between different powders and have the same consistency.
You will also be able to change from charge to charge without having to empty the powder hopper. That means you get to spend more time getting the measurements you want and spend less time on minute adjustments.
However, we still recommend using a high-quality powder scale. This will be particularly useful when you have to set the original charge and then check the charge occasionally when running the Uniflow.
We do have to admit that the RCBS does not impress us in the look department. While we are not complaining about aesthetics (especially when we are paying attention to our loads), it would still be a bonus to have a good-looking setup.
Overall, we were impressed with the Uniflow. It functions superbly. It comes with a stand plate so that you can mount it on a table or bench, and it is capable of measuring all three major powder types – cylindrical, ball, and flake.
- Works well with different powder types
- Fast and accurate measurements
- Not visually appealing
- Throat might be pitted sometimes
- Requires proper cleaning before use
4. Hornady Lock-N-Load Auto Charge
It seems that it is getting quite challenging to pick the best reloading powder measure. But worry not, we have a buying guide for you later in this article.
We are bringing back another Hornady item to this list. This time, it is the Auto Charge, a fine example of both design and functionality.
What makes the Auto Charge different from the regular Hornady powder measure is that it combines the functions of a powder trickler with an electric scale. This allows for an almost perfect powder charge every time.
You might think that this setup complicates the device. On the contrary, it just adds to the Auto Charge’s finesse.
Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication, and Hornady has designed a machine that does the job well without sending you through complex processes. The Auto Charge is not that big (which we like), and comes with a simple instruction manual. In fact, it even comes with an easy-to-read display and a keypad that is simple to operate.
Auto Charge is also nice and consistent when it comes to a complete reload. There are times when you might receive an overcharge, but that is something you should expect from practically every powder measure.
You can choose the speed at which you want to dispense the powder. If you are aiming to load in as many charges as possible within the hour, then you should go ahead and pick the fast setting. Do note, however, that this could lead to an overcharge. For other purposes (and to get more accurate results), you should select the normal or slow setting.
- An efficient and practical design
- Easy-to-use features
- Dispenses powder accurately
- Speed settings are a welcome addition
- The price point might throw off some people
- Over pours powder at times
- A lengthy startup process
5. Rcbs Chargemaster Combo Scale/Dispenser : Best Electronic Powder Measure
We really enjoyed using Hornady’s electronic dispenser (the Auto Charge). But is it the best electronic powder measure?
We have to admit that it is not. That is because that title goes to the RCBS Chargemaster Scale and Dispenser Combo. There is a lot to say about this device so let us get started right away.
The Chargemaster is an advanced machine for measuring gunpowder. It not only supplies you with an accurate powder measure tool but also includes other awesome features such as the memory function.
RCBS wants to assist its customers as much as possible. To achieve that, they have included an instruction manual that is simple to understand (even for people who are not tech savvy).
You will also find a weight included that you can use to check the Chargemaster’s scales for accuracy. This is important if you are a match shooter as getting the exact charge each time will assist with your shooting.
When it comes to changing powder, we found out that it was a several step process. You will find out that the powder trickle tube will have powder residue in it, so it is best to clean it thoroughly.
However, the machine dispenses the powder accurately. It also maintains consistency when it dispenses the powder. We also discovered that the machine makes the work less tedious, which provides you with more loads per hour than other automatic powder measures.
The Chargemaster is rather temperature sensitive. This is a minor complaint that we have in an otherwise wonderful piece of machinery. We would wish that RCBS had paid more attention to this minor, though noticeable, fault.
- Easy to clean
- Calibration is easy
- Stores different loads
- Scale is accurate
- Pretty slow in our opinion
- Over pours the powder sometimes
- Temperature sensitive
What to Look For Before Buying a Powder Measure
Here are a few factors to consider before heading over to purchase your powder measure. After all, your charges should not be having trouble during your shooting sessions!
Manual vs Automatic
A lot of you might think that there is no need to make a choice. The automatic is easier to use and therefore, there is no point even considering the manual options of powder measures.
However, an automatic machine involves a lot more maintenance. If you are comfortable spending extra time cleaning and maintaining your powder measure, then you can easily choose the automatic devices. You will receive a lot more features to work within the process.
While a lot of powder measures guarantee quality – and in many cases – additional features, there is no point in getting your machine if it does not consistently pour the right measurements.
There will always be a change in the pour with a tenth of the amount. That is something you should expect with nearly all dispensers. It is a problem if the change occurs more frequently than is required.
Features and Adjustability
You definitely do not want to land yourself in a situation where your powder measure works well with large charges but loses accuracy with smaller charges.
Many powder measures allow you to adjust settings for a variety of charges. In fact, we think that this feature is an indicator of a good powder measure.
Other features that you can consider are universal stands, extra hoppers, or other gadgets to make your job easier. Or you might even be looking for a machine that is best for extruded powder. Whatever your requirement, check the features of the powder measure before purchasing it.
We know that many of the powder measures are of good quality. Therefore, it is only natural to expect them to remain in good quality for a long time.
You do not want to experience a breakdown in the machine during a crucial time like the hunting season for example.
That is why checking the durability of the machine through retailers, suppliers, or through articles such as ours, should give you the ammunition (no pun intended) to make a sound purchasing decision.
When in doubt, we always recommend that you conduct a thorough research before finalizing your decision.
Yes, that powder measure you saw online sure looks good. It will also affect really good on your wallet.
Try not to look for features such as the design of the product if you are on a tight budget. Rather, understand what you want to get out of the powder measure. Think about the charges per hour you would like to prepare. Now carefully compare your requirements to the features of the product.
- Does it perform the job to your satisfaction?
- Do you really need all the additional features?
- Are you a beginner or an expert sharpshooter?
If you can answer those questions, you can make a well-informed decision and save a lot of buck in the process.
The connection between the consumer and the manufacturer does not simply end upon the purchase of the product. Many companies are putting a lot of effort into their after-sale practices.
To you, this should be important as well. Once you have made the purchase, you might experience some bumps along the way. Even the best brands have their own technical glitches.
The problem now is not that they have these hindrances. You can always bear the minor drawbacks of your purchase. The problem occurs when the manufacturer is irresponsive or barely attentive to your complaints and communication.
You do not want that. You have made an investment in the product, and you should always look for good customer support.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is it important to pay attention to how you mount the powder measure?
Yes, it is. If the device is wiggling around, it will not yield consistent results no matter how many adjustments you make.
How to test the consistency of the machine?
After you have filled the hopper, make at least 10 to 15 dummy charges as a test. This will give you an indication of the machine’s consistency.
Should I tap on the side of the hopper in order to level the powder?
We recommend that you do not tap on the side of the hopper to level the powder. You do not need to do this at all.
What do I do if the powder clings to the hopper?
To solve this problem, simply empty the hopper first, wash it, and then dip it in a soapy water solution. Let it dry before putting it back on again.
Should I maintain the powder funnel?
It is important to maintain the funnel by ensuring that you clean it regularly.
So, there you have it fellow shooters and gun enthusiasts. We hope you got an idea on how to choose the best powder measure. Go through our buying guide and FAQs as well for more inspiration.
Joseph Fox is a 45 years old blogger & passionate hunter from United states. He is also a firearm enthusiastic & likes to share his experience with you. He has a teaching background & now works as an author of Gunloading.com.