Press Monitor Available...

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by alank2, Feb 21, 2010.

  1. alank2

    alank2

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    Hi Everyone,

    If you are interested in a press monitor or just want to check out my idea turned into a product please see:

    www.pressmonitordevice.com

    I've tried to think of everything I could to put into it. It monitors the users press actions and will let you know if any action is incorrect - such as forgetting to rotate the shellplate on a 550 for example, or not fully cycling the press as well.

    It also has many statistics including rounds loaded, rounds per hour, etc.

    Thanks,

    Alan
     
  2. WiskyT

    WiskyT Malcontent

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    Hardware solution to a software problem? It reminds me of the back-up warnings on minivans. People will rely on a sensor to tell them it's safe to back-up. That's great until they backover their own kid because they were relying on a sensor to think for them.
     

  3. alank2

    alank2

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    Hi WiskyT,

    It isn't a replacement for good reloading practices and attention; it is an extra set of eyes (sensors) to watch the actions.

    I agree with you that the user needs to do their job and watch what is going on, but the achilles heel of the 550 is "I forgot to rotate the shellplate and doubled charged a round". It has happened to newbies and guys you have been loading for 20 years.

    Is it absolutely necessary? No. Does it give me more confidence when I am loading that I didn't do something wrong? Yes.

    It won't be for everyone. I just want to make people aware that it exists in case they want a solution like this.

    Thanks,

    Alan
     
  4. pdog1517

    pdog1517

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    Not a bad idea. Need a beta tester?
     
  5. alank2

    alank2

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    Hi pdog1517,

    What type of press do you have? My current model handles most any press, but I am currently working on a lower priced model ($99) that will be for the Dillon 550 only. It will not have a LCD display, but instead use 3 LED's to indicate the monitoring. It will implement the press action monitoring feature of the unit I currently have for sale.

    Thanks,

    Alan
     
  6. tlafrance

    tlafrance Missing AZ

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    Alan, great idea, I wish you luck with sales.

    The "Forgot to rotate shellplate" issue is easily solved via powder selection that has greater than 50% load density. In this case a double charged round is impossible because the powder obviously overflows and causes a mess.

    Tom
     
  7. alank2

    alank2

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    Hi Tom,

    Thanks; I appreciate it.

    I agree, best practice is to use a powder/load/cartridge combination that has a high level of powder such that a double charge would be impossible to miss. Easy to do in cartridges like 9mm and 40s&w, but can be harder to accomplish in case with lots of case capacity like 38 special for example. Always a good idea to do this if you can.

    Thanks again,

    Alan
     
  8. WiskyT

    WiskyT Malcontent

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    I don't fault you for coming up with it, and assuming it works as advertised it is definately a clever piece of equipment. I just don't like the idea of equipment that takes the thinking out of dangerous business. This is particularly true with cars. Technology is relatively cheap and easy to adapt to just about everything, so everything has a camera on it and a sensor that is intended to be a back-up to prevent human error. In reality, people consider it a way to let them ignore what they should be doing. The cars now have backing sensors, lane change sensors and sensors to slam the breaks on if you don't bother to stop before you run into the car in front of you. All of this will result in the driver texting in the back seat with a blindfold on because the nitwits this country is raising figure the sensors will take care of everything.

    I don't even rely on mirrors when I drive a car. I turn my head and LOOK. My JHS principal backed over and killed his grandson when he was looking in the rearview mirror.
     
  9. alank2

    alank2

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    Hi WiskyT,

    I am with you. Technology stinks compared to using your head. I agree, I turn my head and look too - you just can't count on a mirror since it has a blind spot. Page 1 of my manual has a disclaimer for exactly this reason - my product doesn't replace good reloading practices. It just provides an extra bit of protection.

    I think I've actually had customers buy it as much for the statistics and other features as the press monitoring feature.

    Thanks for the feedback; I do appreciate it.

    Alan
     
  10. pdog1517

    pdog1517

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    Dillon 550, but its a pre "B" model.
     
  11. GioaJack

    GioaJack Conifer Jack

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    I actually think the thing is pretty spiffy... but then again I like toys and electronic gadgets.... HEY!... I think I just saw something shiny! Oops, sorry.

    Your price seems to be very reasonable, especially sine I couldn't build one even if I was given a budget equal to the national debt.

    I would be interested in seeing a video that shows not only the display area of the machine but how it is connected to various areas or the press and how it actually monitors each action.

    Fun little toys are getting harder and harder to find. Progress sucks, there's less and less to look forward to.

    Jack
     
  12. alank2

    alank2

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    Hi,

    pdog1517: How does the pre B model differ? Shouldn't be an issue though.

    GioajacK: I am working on some new videos. The one's on my site are quite old, back from the prototype days. I plan to setup a shot where you can see the press and monitor at the same time...

    Thanks,

    Alan
     
  13. D. Manley

    D. Manley

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    Congratulations Alan...well thought-out design and a polished end result. IMHO, would be a terrific addition to a Dillon 550 from a safety standpoint alone.
     
  14. alank2

    alank2

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    Hi D. Manley,

    Thanks; I appreciate it. It has been about a year of development, design, testing, and hard work.

    Thanks,

    Alan
     
  15. yammerschooner

    yammerschooner Won't rent pigs

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    It has been fun watching you develop this Alan. It is pretty cool how far you have come since when you were just fiddling with parts to see if you could do it.

    I wish you continued success with this.
     
  16. Mystic Knight

    Mystic Knight Mystic Knight

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    I think it's an admirable idea that will sell. However, I think you should make the less expensive model for the Lee and similar presses. People who can affoard a 550 can affoard an expensive monitor, and will be offended if you offer them a cheap one. :shocked:
     
  17. Jumper

    Jumper

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    Looks like it works pretty good. I think it would be a handy device especially for the round count. I assume you are using magnetic contacts at the top and bottom of the stroke, maybe another one for the low powder sensor(?) for your inputs.

    I think your best market is for Dillon 550 users and maybe the Lee turrets. The auto-indexing press's probably not. But good job nonetheless! Did you have any type of process control engineering experience to draw on?
     
  18. alank2

    alank2

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    Hi,

    It uses two or three microswitches. If you have a auto-indexing press then one microswitch for the press handle up and one microswitch for the press handle down. Manual indexing presses need an additional sensor to detect when the shellplate is rotated.

    I've used hall effect magnetic sensors and they fine enough, so someone could go that route if they prefer non-contact sensing. Honestly, the microswitches have been working so great that I've just been using them. I don't know how to sense shellplate rotation with a magnetic sensor.

    It has statistics galore. It has round counter (which you can adjust on the fly as necessary using the + or - buttons), a time loaded counter that is smart enough to automatically stop and restart if you walk away from the press for a little bit, a round per hour counter for the last 3-15 rounds (your current RPM rate), and a round per hour counter total for your entire loading session (rounds loaded / time loaded). If you tell it how many rounds you plan to load, it can even count them down and also tell you how long you have to go in hours and minutes based on your total RPH. It also keeps a long term count of rounds loaded, hours loaded, and overall RPH. It also keeps track of when the press needs maintenance by hours or by rounds, your choice. I tried to add a lot of cool stuff if I thought of it.

    I am primarily a software developer, but I got into programming microcontrollers and electronics last year. It has been a great learning experience. The programming was the easier part; the manufacturing has been tougher to work out all the methods to build something professionally and quickly.

    Thanks,

    Alan
     
  19. alank2

    alank2

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    Hi,

    Oh, yes, it has no sensor for the powder measure. It keeps track based on what you tell it using this:

    You can (1) weigh your powder container, enter that weight, (2) dump as much powder as you like into the measure, (3) weigh your powder contain again, enter that weight. It will then calculate how much powder you added to the measure and if you enter the charge weight of the round, it will automatically deduct that from what it thinks is in the measure. It can alert you when the measure falls below a set value like 1500 grains for example.

    It also has an analysis where you repeat that in reverse. Weight your container, dump the powder measure back into it, weight it again. The monitor will calculate how many grains were used based on the actual weights and since it knows how many rounds were loaded and what the charge weight was, it will analyze it and tell you how many grains ahead or short you are and what the thinks the charge weight actually was based on the actual powder used.

    Thanks,

    Alan
     
  20. WiskyT

    WiskyT Malcontent

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    Based on all of the functions it has, it is definately an interesting peace of equipment. Lot's of people like stuff like that, my father included. It reminds me of the trip computers in cars that tell you how many miles you have left based on your fuel usage, overall average speed etc. My father is an electrical engineer and would constantly tinker with the trip computer on trips, even if the trip was to the supermarket. Now he constantly recalculates his trip with his gps even though he is going to someplace he has been a dozen times.