Customer Reviews

118
4.3 out of 5 stars
Hornady Lock N Load Auto Charge
Price:$224.36 + Free shipping
Your rating(Clear)Rate this item


There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

71 of 71 people found the following review helpful
on September 23, 2012
Verified Purchase
I am a low volume handloader. I more than get by with a Lee Breech Lock hand press kit and the most basic reloading equipment. The one step of the process that irritated me the most was measuring out the charge. I wanted something that didn't need to be excessively fiddled with to measure an exact charge. I already use Lee Dippers for some loads, but I wanted something more precise.

The Hornady Lock N Load Auto charge fit the bill. Oddly enough, its the most expensive piece of reloading kit I own. I consider it money well spent.

I have used it to meter out charges of: 2400, Unique, 231, Titegroup, and Bullseye. The only powder that gave the Hornady Auto Charge issues is Bullseye because its clumpy.

Set up the Auto Charge, calibrate the scale using the included check weights, zero the pan, set a charge weight, load powder into the hopper, and let it do the work. It beeps when it reaches the desired charge weight. As soon as the empty pan touches the scale, it will meter out the next charge. If it throws an over-charge, it will alert three times and lockout operations. I have to deliberately press a key to release the lockout.

Two tips:

First and foremost, let the Auto Charge warm up for at least 15 minutes as directed in the owners manual. All the electronics warm up affecting the scale. Once warmed up you'll see that the scale readout will remain rock steady. That's when you calbrate the scale & zero the pan.

Second, double check the position of the powder drain stop BEFORE depositing powder into the hopper. Trust me.
33 commentsWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
Verified Purchase
After much research I decided to buy the Hornady Lock N Load. Good price here on Amazon and it functions as
advertised. Using ball type powder it cleans up easier then I expected. Will have to try it with
some biger flaked powders. Got good measures with an over charge once in a while. Allow unit to warm up.
22 commentsWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
25 of 29 people found the following review helpful
This was a fine product for me for several years, until the disaster below. It saves a lot of work and is quite accurate. When compared to a beam scale, it is within .1 gn., or less. It is dramatically better, in my opinion, to powder throwers and scales. It is not hard to master and one quickly learns how to use it. I have found some annoying glitches, though:

1. The clear tube and the body of the device inside and out are of a soft plastic. I had the AutoCharge loaded with Alliant Bullseye(tm) powder for 3-4 weeks while reloading a large batch of ammo. When I went to empty the remaining gunpowder back into the original powder jug, I found gunpowder was embedded firmly and permanently into the inside walls of the plastic body cavity and to the clear plastic hopper tube. I scraped some of the gunpowder off gently with a wooden stick, but this was unsuccessful. Gunpowder remains deeply etched or melted into the plastic, leaving a rough, sandpaper like surface, so the device is hard to empty now, although it functions OK. I had the AutoCharge in an air-conditioned room where it is cool and dry all the time and not subject to humidity, even on hot days. I did not have this problem with other Alliant gunpowders, so I made a wrong assumption. I reported this problem to Hornady and they told me that gunpowder should not be left in an AutoCharge longer than three days. I was responsible and they could do nothing for me. I agree that ruining my AutoCharge was my own fault - but I can warn you on how to avoid my disaster.

2. The electronic operation of the device has a number of idiosyncrasies. For example, if the Hornady dispenses an overload of .2 gn. or more, it stops and provides an error message. This is what it should do, but it locks up and cannot be rebooted even by turning it off, so when this happens, you must unplug the power and then re-enter all of your settings again. Not a terrible event, but annoying and time-wasting.

3. As it dispenses the powder, the AutoCharge slows down dramatically when it begins to approach the set amount to avoid over-dispensing. Then, as the AutoCharge dispenses the last .4 gn., one may have to sit and wait several minutes, watching the powder trickle out. There is no way to speed this last measure of gunpowder. The device has low, med. and high speeds, but they all bog down for several min. during the last .4 gn. or so. Yes, you can use a powder trickler and the AutoCharge has it's own trickle function, but either of these is awkward. The AutoCharge should be programmable by the user to avoid excessive slowdown at the end of the process.

4. In summary, I would never go back to a powder thrower by volume nor a beam scale by weight. The AutoCharge is far better. I do not blame Hornady's product for being ruined by the gunpowder that I left in it. That was my fault.

5. Because I am now replacing the AutoCharge, I chose another, more modern dispenser of another brand rather than buying another AutoCharge with it's older design. And you can bet I will not leave gunpowder in the new dispenser for longer than three days!
22 commentsWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
32 of 41 people found the following review helpful
on January 28, 2013
Verified Purchase
When the charger got here, I was all excited. I followed the directions to the letter, set it up and started to play. Problem is it overcharges every load. Some loads by 0.2 grains other loads up to 1.5 grains. Tried different powders with with the same results. Tried slowing down the dispense, but no luck. Weird thing is once it gets to the exact weight, it pauses for a second. Then it overcharges. Other times it will just overcharge on this initial load.
I read a few other remarks similar to the problems I had. To me this is too dangerous. I returned it for a second go. Hopefully the replacement works.
NOT HAPPY WITH AMAZON ON THIS. Normally the pay for full shipping on returns. On this item they paid less than a flat rate shipping box permits....

- Update from last Review. After returning the first one, Amazon shipped me a second one. On this one, it does work better than the first one. BUT!!! It only works on certain powders... The trickle tube does not go nearly as fast as the first one, which seems to allow it to read the powder and stop the charger in time. On a serious downside to this charger, I was not able to get it to consistently work without overcharging on consistent grain size powders such as Varget, IMR 4320... It still overcharges about 10% of the time, which is a hassle. Now on powders with uneven grain sizes, such as H4831, the machine seems to be incapable of loading these powders without overcharging. Therefore, I do not think it is fair to raise my review to a higher number. If your going to get a powder charger you might as well get one that works with all powder's rather than with only consistent grain powders. Therefore I feel that I must stand by my original review that this product is neither safe or worth the $$$. Using my good old fashion charge station an electronic scale is much faster and more accurate than this piece of junk. I would return the second one, but living in Alaska, for the cost of returning it twice is too much... Happy shooting and good luck!
22 commentsWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
18 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on February 27, 2013
Verified Purchase
It appears that it has gotten some so-so reviews. It IS very sensitive, and accurate to a 10th of a grain. This does the job for me and I have no complaints at all. Some reviewers have complained that it overcharges. I do NOT find that to be the case. I find it totally accurate. It will however continue if you lift the pan up a little then set it back down. After the charge is measured, you need to take the pan right up off the weighing tray, and then empty it into a cartridge, putting it back down on the weighing tray will automatically activate another weighed powder charge.

This instrument comes with good instructions (I followed them) and I have no problems at all. Well worth the money spent!
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on October 17, 2014
Verified Purchase
It over charges on the powders that I use even after trying to adjust the trickel. Not user friendly! But it comes with a DVD that showed you how to set your auto charge to slow down the speed and and the trickel charge by during this you are able to get with in 1 tenth of your charge weight. So be sure to look at the DVD.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Verified Purchase
I did extensive search's for reviews of this unit before purchasing and did so with some trepidation. My concerns were well founded. The unit is straight forward in the function and adjustment's that may be needed or wanted for individual use.

Calibration was straightforward. I did have a concern about how long the unit had to warm up to be accurate so I did a test of just turning it on and calibrating straightaway and then turning unit off and allowing 10 minutes before turning on again and allowing unit to "stabilize". I found no difference in the function or accuracy.

I did find that this unit does throw over charge more frequently than not. I also experienced that the discharge tube would not rotate from time to time when auto dispense was activated. I had to give it a "nudge" to get it to go. I also found that during my sessions the unit would just power down for no reason. This is indicative of bad electronics and/or problems with the unit.

Based on my experience with this unit I cannot give it a good review and would not recommend to others. I use other Hornady products and am satisfied with their function however this unit didn't make the mark.

I used this unit for a full two weeks and hundreds of cycles so I can feel confident in saying the repeated "glitches" were more than just a glitch.

Powder dump was not user friendly (I doubt many are regardless of make/model)
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on March 7, 2013
Verified Purchase
Item is very handy for hand loading individual cartridges. The auto dispense when the pan is returned to the scale is a nice touch. It does over charge extruded type powders with the fast setting selected on a pretty regular basis. On the slow setting I may get an overcharge 1 out of 10, so 10% of the time. The unit does much better with pistol type powder. I haven't had one over charge using pistol type powder.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on February 12, 2013
Verified Purchase
I skipped over this item when I first got into reloading and after 6 months my kit scale crapped out on me so I ponied up the dough on this item. I was skeptical at first bc I wasn't sure it would be worth it especially if I was still having to fine tune every load. After completing my first 100 rounds in less than half my usual time and only having to adjust the auto load for overfilling by .2 grams on 5 or 6 of the 100 rounds, I was sold. I found that it was a bit testy when I first fired it up but as the directions clearly state, it needs a 5-15 min setup period when you first turn it on. This will save me hours at the reloading bench every month. Highly recommmended!!
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on October 27, 2013
Verified Purchase
It's too easy, too fast and too accurate. Never thought a unit like this was worth the money. Wrong! Scales and mechanical powder measures are good but this unit is great. Leaves me more time to concentrate on the loading and not getting the charge to the correct weight. One, two or 100 rounds, this is the way to go!
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Questions? Get fast answers from reviewers

Please make sure that you've entered a valid question. You can edit your question or post anyway.
Please enter a question.
See all 7 answered questions

     
 
Customers who viewed this also viewed


 
     

Send us feedback

How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you?
Let us know here.

Your Recently Viewed Items and Featured Recommendations 
 

After viewing product detail pages, look here to find an easy way to navigate back to pages you are interested in.