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best media separator?


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#1 Trey A

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Posted 29 December 2011 - 10:30 PM

I need a good, mess free separator. Who makes the best and why? What's the differences or are they all about the same?

#2 JaeOne3345

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Posted 29 December 2011 - 10:33 PM

I spent 30 bucks on the Cabela's unit and I couldn't be happier. 5 spins and all the corn/walnut media is out.

I wouldn't spend more.

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#3 cworks

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Posted 29 December 2011 - 11:07 PM

Personally I think the separators are pretty much the same. I am partial to me Dillion because it has a nice big tub to catch all the media that slings out. It will also work well when I upgrade to a stainless tumbler.

#4 jluther820

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Posted 04 January 2012 - 10:17 AM

Plus one for the cabelas model. Its cheap, holds a lot, and has the cover so you can keep your reloading area clean.

#5 1911pilot

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Posted 05 January 2012 - 02:13 AM

I like my old Midway separator. I'm probably going to change to using the new style Franford arsenal basket with the old bucket though.

#6 j0n

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Posted 05 January 2012 - 02:22 AM

Another vote for the Cabelas unit. I ordered most of my reloading stuff from Cabelas when I got started so it was an easy choice.

#7 codemonkey001

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 12:51 PM

my gf picked this up for me over the weekend. another re-labled Berry's unit. goes great w/ my Cabela's/Berry's tumbler. it's great for the money, i think the RCBS version is $15 more. i passed on the Dillon one b/c it didn't have a cover. i didn't know if it would send media flying once i got that thing spinning.

#8 Simon

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 09:50 PM

I do like the dillon even though it flings media when cranked too fast.

#9 noylj

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Posted 20 January 2012 - 06:43 AM

I like the RCBS. It has a lid to keep the dust from blowing all over.
There really isn't much to say for one over another, other than the big Dillon (I have never tried the smaller Dillon) has a lock pin to keep the drum open when you empty it, but it gets in the way, for me at least, when rotating the drum.
What is needed is a design that lets you easily empty to drum, rather than picking up the cases by hand. That gets tedious real fast.

#10 codemonkey001

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Posted 20 January 2012 - 04:04 PM

I like the RCBS. It has a lid to keep the dust from blowing all over.
There really isn't much to say for one over another, other than the big Dillon (I have never tried the smaller Dillon) has a lock pin to keep the drum open when you empty it, but it gets in the way, for me at least, when rotating the drum.
What is needed is a design that lets you easily empty to drum, rather than picking up the cases by hand. That gets tedious real fast.


i just open the clamshell drum a bit and then let the cases spill into a small box.

#11 Jonathan Taliani

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Posted 20 January 2012 - 04:13 PM

I've only used my large Dillon separator, but I have absolutely no complaints about it.

#12 KyroWebs

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Posted 20 January 2012 - 04:21 PM

I like the RCBS. It has a lid to keep the dust from blowing all over.


That's the reason I went with the RCBS. It's nice not cleaning media up off the floor anymore. It also helps with the dust and lead residue in the air if you wait a few minutes before removing the lid and emptying the brass. Especially helpful if you are trying to reduce your exposure to lead.
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#13 pcmunson

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Posted 24 January 2012 - 06:58 AM

A cheap plastic colander over an plastic ice cream bucket has always worked well. I dump the media in a 5 gallon pail.

#14 warpspeed

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Posted 27 January 2012 - 06:16 PM

If you do any serious volume, the big Dillon is hard to beat.

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#15 BMartens

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Posted 27 January 2012 - 07:15 PM

Can't beat the Cabela's.
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#16 diversmith

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Posted 27 January 2012 - 08:31 PM

another vote for the Cabelas model. I like the closed top...I also take mine out the back door of the garage and do the empty/fill routine outside in order to keep the dust down inside my garage. I also put fresh, once-used dryer sheets in the batch when separating. This also helps to combat any dust and then I dump them on an old bath-size towel and roll them around....really keeps the brass dust-free. I then put those sheets in the tumbler for the next batch. Repeat as necessary :D

#17 Chris Keen

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 08:36 PM

If you do any serious volume, the big Dillon is hard to beat.


I do large volume reloading for pistol, and even the SMALL Dillon separator is hard to beat!!! Best $35 I ever spent! :)

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#18 Sarge

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 09:02 PM

Same here. I have no complaints about my small Dillon.

Couple of things though.

I use it in the garage so I just blow the floor clean once in awhile.

It does not spill much media unless you are spinning way to fast for it to be effective in the first place.

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#19 RammerJammer

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Posted 01 February 2012 - 08:14 AM

I bought the frankfort Arsenal set for really cheap. With walnut it was perfect, it comes with a lid and little spill walls you can put on the sides while seperating. I just bought a huge bag of corncob and about 20% goes in the vacuum cleaner no matter how careful I am. It just flings it everywhere.
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#20 sidnal

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Posted 01 February 2012 - 09:20 AM

A cheap plastic colander over an plastic ice cream bucket has always worked well. I dump the media in a 5 gallon pail.


+1 but it isn't mess-free. Not an issue for me b/c clean brass in the garage. I use a large colander over a 5-gal bucket.
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#21 Linear Thinker

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 11:41 AM

I've used the Midway tub-and-screen, the Lyman vibra-tumbler with the media spout on the side, the Lyman slotted bowl-screen, and the Dillon rotating hexagon.
The Dillon is the best by far.
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#22 Foxbat

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 01:36 PM

I do pretty good volume, and I HATE mess and dust, so I do several things to reduce it. One - I do it under the exhaust hood that I built on top of a 48" plastic cart.

Second - a lot of spill occurs as you dump stuff from the tumblers and into the separator. For this reason I put spouts on my tumblers. It is easy, and it cuts the spillage great deal.

Third - I modified the RCBS separator. I bolted it to the top surface, and cut a 5" hole in its bottom. There is a flanged piece of 5" duct below, sending the media straight into the bucket.

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Edited by Foxbat, 10 February 2012 - 01:37 PM.


#23 Poppa Bear

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Posted 24 July 2012 - 07:15 AM

I also use the RCBS that has been modified. I cut the bottom off so that it is one giant hole. That base fits inside a 5 gallon bucket so as I rotate the drum all the media falls into the bucket. I then scoop up my next batch of brass, drop it in the bucket and then pour the entire contents into the tumbler for my next run.

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#24 Bamboo

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Posted 25 July 2012 - 07:17 PM

This is a heck of a deal for $16, looks to be the same as the Cabela's I have except it's red. (BTW - I really like the cabelas separator, works great on pistol and rifle, hardly even have to touch the media, and it doesn't make a mess at all...usually!)

http://www.midsouths...sku=00038502023

I've ordered from Midsouth a couple of times and they do good.

#25 GrumpyOne

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 07:03 AM


A cheap plastic colander over an plastic ice cream bucket has always worked well. I dump the media in a 5 gallon pail.


+1 but it isn't mess-free. Not an issue for me b/c clean brass in the garage. I use a large colander over a 5-gal bucket.

I have a deep colander that sits perfectly inside a 5 gallon bucket. Dump brass and media in, shake bucket around 10-15 times, pour out brass. The colander has some pretty big holes, so the media goes through pretty fast.
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