Double Alpha Academy Magnetic Powder Check Review
Back when I first started reloading, my first trip to the range with my 9mm reloads, I had a squib load, a muffled poof and I had lodged a bullet about a half inch into the barrel. Fortunately I had the presence of mind to not pull the trigger again as that would have been catastrophic.
That early error caused me to re-examine my single stage batch loading routine, it goes like this.
- • I place my prepped cases mouth up in a reloading tray.
- • As I hand prime the cases they are placed back in the tray primer side up.
- • As I charge the cases they will naturally be mouth up, but when I charge the last case I stand up and scan across each row with a small flashlight verifying the powder levels.
- • All bullets are seated.
- • All bullets are crimped and placed in a packaging tray as they are crimped.
The result is I have not had a squib charge since that time. But now I have purchased a Lee Breechlock Pro progressive press. I started with a single stage rather than a turret on the advice of the guys at The Reloading Podcast, (also here on The Reloaders Network at Reloading Podcast), in one of their Back To Basics episodes. I believe it was Jim Fleming that made that recommendation for a new reloader so that one could learn the basics focusing on each step rather than multiple steps in the process, or something to that effect. I appreciate the advise.
So in remembrance of that squib load and the possibility of double charges, I wanted a powder check system. Dillon has a good powder check system, but it is exclusive to their machines, Hornady and RCBS have a powder cop which is essentially a rod that gives a visual indication of powder level without looking down into the case. Mark 7 has a powder check system, but …… nevermind.
Double Alpha Academy on the other hand has what is basically a universal powder check system that is not press specific. It arrived today and after a little tinkering I had it installed and up and running.
I will continue to do brass prep on the single stage and hand prime with the Frankford Arsenal hand primer, but being limited to 4 stations means I have to seat and crimp the flare on the same station.
So there you have it for your consideration.
I owned a Marlin 60 since 1987, but never really got ‘into’ guns until 2011 when I bought my first 9mm pistol. That was soon followed by a .380 and a 12 guage pump, and I was all in. I had done some 20 guage reloading growing up, and threw myself into 9mm and .223 reloading in 2017, .380 in 2019 and 7.62×39 in 2020. It is so satisfying to go to the range and string together ever improving groups with ammo I loaded myself; it doesn’t hurt that I’m a little OCD about technical things, the tangible/visible rewards are really gratifying.
I have a nagging but as yet unattained ‘want’ for a .358 Yeti unloader, it just looks like a really cool caliber. My next learning curve, space permitting, is casting and coating.