By: Mary and Dr. Jim Clary
Frankford Arsenal's Platinum Series Powder Measure
Back in the “dark ages” before digital scales, we patiently weighed out several charges on balance beam scales, poured them into powder tubes and adjusted the screw-plunger on the bottom to raise the powder to the top. We then put the tube under our powder-thrower and pulled the handle. After much trial and error, we got the adjustments correct and began to “throw” powder charges volumetrically. To be cautious, most reloaders would check every 10th charge on the balance beam scales to verify our accuracy. It worked quite well for the casual shooter and hunter. However, competition target shooters weighed each and every charge to obtain the highest possible accuracy, and they still do today.
Volumetric powder measures have been around ever since reloading started, even getting completely “idiot-proof” with the Lee Dippers. There are a lot of them on the market and virtually every multi-stage press has the capability of mounting one. Why then is the Frankford Arsenal one superior to so many others on the market? The answer is design and construction.
With respect to its construction, the Frankford measure is machined to extremely tight tolerances, well in excess of what is required to consistently produce accurate charges. But, the real feature that sets this unit above all others on the market is the universal meter with its reference marks that makes it possible to deliver precise charges from 0.8 grains to 120 grains. This meter tube works with ball, flake, cylinder or extruded powder with equal accuracy.
We used it to meter Hodgdon's TiteGroup and Hodgdon's H110 powders in loading over 2,000 rounds of .38 Spl and .357 Magnum rounds for testing in the new Henry Big Boy rifle. We checked every 20th charge on our RCBS digital Chargemaster and found no deviation from our settings. That is saying a lot, as our older powder measurers (not Frankford) were commonly off plus/minus a tenth of a grain after a few dozen rounds. THAT was not a problem with this unit.
For the record: The reference marks do not represent powder charges in grains.... they are reference marks that allow you to adjust the meter tube for precise charges and record the setting for future use.
The specs for the Frankford powder measure are:
7/8-14 threads for mounting to a press
2 different mounting stands included (high clearance bench top or mount version)
Quick disconnect to pour unused powder back into factory cannister
Once again: Works with ball, flake, cylinder and extruded powders
Metal universal meter tube with precise reference marks
(eliminates the need for multiple metering units/tubes)
We like this unit and given its construction and precision of operation, the 2018 MSRP of $119.99 is not unreasonable.