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Very accurate digi- scale- .02grain

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/01/2012 at 06:47
Alan Robertson View Drop Down
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I found a very accurate jeweler's scale on an auction site, claiming .001gram, or .02 grain precision- the Horizon HA-30.

The HA-30 has 30 gram (460+grains) capacity, comes with both battery (4xAAA) and AC power,  calibration weight and scale pan, all for $25.99, shipped to my door from a vendor in PA.
I am a Scotsman by ancestry and inclination, so in light of prices for many electronic scales aimed at hand loaders, such a deal could not be passed up.

I weighed bullets in several short sessions over three days, sorting no less than six boxes into .1gr groups. I even sorted a few boxes of "blemished" bullets which were destined to be plinkers- couldn't help myself- had to give the scale a workout.
Surprisingly, my plinker bullets fell into only 4 groups at .1gr apart- excellent for 10 cent bullets!
With precision of 20/1000ths of a grain, a guy could weigh and sort  primers... not this guy, but a guy could.

After running 20 or so bullets, the "tare" would change, perhaps .1 grain, so I'd hit the tare button and all would be well again.
Just guessing-  the electronics must warm up a bit and then the readings change.
Maybe the air pressure changed- who knows. I only ran the tests with AC power and the machine may have been more stable on battery power.

In use, this scale doesn't get to a point and then "lock in" a reading as some scales do, but will instead display as it resolves (typically 2-3 seconds), finally reaching the correct weight. Blow on it and the reading changes, then returns quickly to the correct reading. While the machine is stable in operation- no glitchy wild swings- it is nevertheless sensitive to heavy fingers on the scale- "over load".

The little machine shuts itself off after 60 seconds, which was no problem in actual use. It did not require re- calibration after a restart, but I did calibrate each day. I also re-weighed a small number of bullets on successive days and each read the same weight as before. That works for me.

The HA 30 comes with a 1 yr limited warranty from the vendor and a list of operating caveats- level surface, no rough treatment, no environmental disasters, over capacity, etc; all to be expected.
One quirk- the cal. wt. does not fit the storage hole provided in the body of the instrument, so it's apparent that some sort of design change happened after production began. There is also no storage case at this price.
Never mind how I hate to let go of $25, with the HA-30, I am a happy camper.


This Hornady .224 55 gr. spire point with cannelure weighs 54.98 gr- close enough.
Good job, Hornady.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/01/2012 at 08:42
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Awesome.  I need to get one of those...
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/05/2012 at 12:45
Alan Robertson View Drop Down
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I re-tested the HA-30 and this time, ran it on batteries.
As suspected, it did not experience any "tare" drift on batteries, and self- tared after each weight tested. The HA-30 did need to be re- tared every few minutes due to line voltage drift, while using AC power. The tare drift wasn't a problem, as the machine clearly indicated when it needed re- tare on 120 VAC.

I re- tested some of the .224 bullets sorted earlier and the results agreed across the samples, so no accuracy issues/differences were noted between battery and AC power, even with the AC tare issue.

I re- weighed some 150 gr. "blem" bullets which had previously been weighed on my RCBS 5-10 beam scale. The groups sorted on the RCBS were generally still in the same weight categories, but about 15% needed moved up or down .1 grain to another group. When you consider that  .1 gr is about 7/10's of a percent of a 150 gr bullet, then the old RCBS has been a great scale all these years, considering it is old technology.

The HA- 30 is actually less expensive than some other digi- scales offering only .2 grain precision. Is this level of precision really needed? Certainly not for hunting ammo, but at this price, I might as well take advantage of it.

Considering how the dollar has been downsized since I bought the old 5-10 in '78, this would have been about 1/4 the price of the RCBS at the time. I'm sure the old beam scale will win the longevity race, though.

Maybe some day we will begin to advance our wisdom and understanding at the same rate we advance our technology.




Edited by Alan Robertson - September/05/2012 at 17:11
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/05/2012 at 13:25
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Let me get this straight. You are saying that the scale is accurate to .02 grain, and not 0.2 grain?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/05/2012 at 13:38
Alan Robertson View Drop Down
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Roger that.
Precision =.001 gram ( 1 milligram) ~ .02 grain (.01543 grain)... see the first pic- 54.98 grains indicated.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/05/2012 at 13:40
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And you'd recommend it, as a $30 purchase?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/05/2012 at 13:50
Alan Robertson View Drop Down
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Well, I paid $25.99 and I'm pleased with it. (price included shipping)
There seems to be no equivalent for the price, in the "reloading scale" market.

This scale is much more accurate and consistent in it's readings than either my old RCBS 5-10, or my little Frankford Arsenal .2 gr scale.

I've no idea of the precision of the digital "reloading" scales, which all seem to be $80 and up.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/05/2012 at 14:05
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Originally posted by Kickboxer Kickboxer wrote:

Awesome.  I need to get one of those...
 Me too.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/05/2012 at 14:07
Alan Robertson View Drop Down
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The same outfit also makes a 20 gram and a 50 gram model, respectively 300+ gr. and 770+ gr.
Seems like I  remember that the 20 gram model was smaller, battery only and also gave readings in dwt. (pennyweights) for the gold bug crowd.

One other note on accuracy: if the bullets were placed in about a 1/2" circle in center of the scale, then readings were consistent. Moving the bullets out to the corners, or edges gave readings +/-.
No biggie.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/05/2012 at 14:11
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I need to look into this. cause my beam scale is nice but slow.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/05/2012 at 14:15
Alan Robertson View Drop Down
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Originally posted by Steelbenz Steelbenz wrote:

I need to look into this. cause my beam scale is nice but slow.
That's exactly why I got this... speed. I was happy with the RCBS, but it was slow (not near as accurate/precise as I thought, either). The Frankford digi was fast, but inconsistent.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/05/2012 at 14:20
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That setup would be great with a trickle measure and the Lee scoops.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/05/2012 at 14:38
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Use a digital scale and you'll never use a balance beam scales again. I've been using a Pact since they first came out. Great product.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/05/2012 at 14:46
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I'd like to use it when my Lyman trickler/scale starts acting up.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/05/2012 at 18:21
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Thats the same scale I bought about 2 years ago and my findings were the same as Alan's.  Same artifact with the zero too!  I found the auto off a little annoying myself... Price sounds about right too...might be able to find same one on eBay a little cheaper.
 
You can measure and see the weight change of adding a single kernal of most powders with it!!!  Can't get much better than that!
 
I now use it to verify my Lyman 1200 autodispenser also sort casings and bullets by weight.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/05/2012 at 18:33
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budperm-

Do you really think you're gonna find it any cheaper than a wily old Scotsman named Alan Robertson did?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/05/2012 at 18:50
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Well.... I did... afterall I'm 30% MacGregor....YES! Wink
 
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/05/2012 at 19:52
Alan Robertson View Drop Down
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Well, Laddie- 2 years ago, when you bought your unit, bacon wasn't over $3/lb as it is now, nor had milk and eggs and all other things been subjected to the rampant inflation we've seen since Obama decided that all he had to do to get more money was to print it.

That price quoted is the lowest on eBay, for units shipped from US vendor. You can find it for ~$22 if you want to wait for it to be shipped from Shanghai, China.

 MacGregor are ye?
Thàinig Clann Dhonnchaidh
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/07/2012 at 05:50
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Originally posted by Alan Robertson Alan Robertson wrote:

I re-tested the HA-30 and this time, ran it on batteries.
As suspected, it did not experience any "tare" drift on batteries, and self- tared after each weight tested. The HA-30 did need to be re- tared every few minutes due to line voltage drift, while using AC power. The tare drift wasn't a problem, as the machine clearly indicated when it needed re- tare on 120 VAC.

I re- tested some of the .224 bullets sorted earlier and the results agreed across the samples, so no accuracy issues/differences were noted between battery and AC power, even with the AC tare issue.
Plugged into a UPS, it ought to be OK, no?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/07/2012 at 06:17
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Originally posted by Alan Robertson Alan Robertson wrote:

Well, Laddie- 2 years ago, when you bought your unit, bacon wasn't over $3/lb as it is now, nor had milk and eggs and all other things been subjected to the rampant inflation we've seen since Obama decided that all he had to do to get more money was to print it.

That price quoted is the lowest on eBay, for units shipped from US vendor. You can find it for ~$22 if you want to wait for it to be shipped from Shanghai, China.

 MacGregor are ye?
Thàinig Clann Dhonnchaidh
Yeah your probably right.... it was two years ago and alot of poop has gone down the pipe since then.  Can't remember if i bought from us vendor or importer.  I usually am very leary about importers as a whole.
 
S'rioghal Mo Dhream
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/07/2012 at 07:07
Alan Robertson View Drop Down
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Opus Dei asked:
"Plugged into a UPS, it ought to be OK, no?"

Interesting question... first off, the tare thing isn't much of a problem. Second, UPSs have been known to cause problems for delicate electronics, as their output is often closer to a square wave, than a sine wave. I've had all kinds of doodads plugged into UPSs w/out issues; suppose it depends on the UPS.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: October/06/2012 at 15:13
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Just ordered one from amazon for 23.95 with free shipping ..... Frugal maybe even tightwad.    Yeah, that would be me.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: October/06/2012 at 19:59
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Great now i need one. Bucky
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: October/11/2012 at 20:01
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Okay to add more fuel to the fire.  it's dead nuts!






Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: October/11/2012 at 21:24
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Oh that's it... ordering one as soon as I find one as cheap as Steelbenz.
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