January 5th, 2014

ChargeMaster Hacks — How to Optimize Your Green Machine

If you own an RCBS ChargeMaster 1500 electronic powder scale/dispenser, or are thinking about purchasing one, here are a few tips that can cut your loading times and eliminate some petty annoyances.

Mute That Annoying Beep
Some ChargeMaster users complain about the loud beep at the end of each cycle. There’s a simple way to silence the beep — and you don’t have to cut any wires or permanently disable the speaker. To mute the beep, simply hold down the Zero button until “beep off” displays. Repeat this procedure to restore the beep function.

Activating the Auto-Dispense Mode
You can set the ChargeMaster to automatically dispense your pre-programmed charge as soon as you put the pan back on the scale. Simply press and hold the “Enter” button. The code “Auto” should then appear on the display. At this point, push “Disp” to dispense the first charge. When you replace the pan, the unit will automatically dispense the same charge. For some people this is an added convenience. You can always go back to the default manual dispense method by changing the dispense mode using the “Enter” button again.

Use a McDonald’s Straw to Reduce Over-Throws
Jaco Brink provided another useful tip to avoid “over-throws” (excess charge weight): “The RCBS employee advised me to take a McDonald’s straw (because it is thicker than a normal straw), cut off about a half inch piece and put it into the tube where the powder exits. This caused the last part of an extruded powder to cluster less, and reduced the amount of overthrows dramatically.”

Instructional Video
The video below shows how to set up and calibrate a Chargemaster 1500. Be sure to level the unit carefully, both left to right and front to back. Starting at the 1:44 mark in the video you can see the unit dispense a 50-grain charge in 30 seconds. The slow, final trickle stage takes about half of the total time.

How to Shorten Dispensing Times
The last tip is for advanced users only. You can alter the programming settings to speed up powder dispensing dramatically. One user reported that, by re-programming his machine, his cut his dispensing time for a 30-grain load from 22 to 13 seconds “with no overthrows”. WARNING: once you change the parameters, there is no “restore” command to set everything back to the defaults. So proceed carefully. The speed enhancement procedure is described on the pages linked below:

Basic ChargeMaster Speed Enhancement | Advanced ChargeMaster Programming Tips

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June 11th, 2009

Money-Saving 12-volt to 1.5-volt Battery Trick

12 volt battery 1.5 voltThese days, shooters use all sorts of battery-powered accessories: chronographs, electronic ear-muffs, wind meters, timers, laser-rangefinders, even pulse-monitors. While AA or AAA batteries are easy to find and relatively inexpensive, many modern digital gadgets use smaller (yet more expensive) 1.5-volt batteries.

Here’s a simple “hack” that gives you eight (8) 1.5-volt button batteries for the price of a single A23 Energizer 12-volt battery (about $2.00 per pair). If you use the 1.5-volt batteries, this could save you quite a bit of cash. Just peel open the Energizer A23 with a screwdriver and you’ll find eight 1.5-volt batteries inside.

Note — this trick is known to work only with the Energizer A23, 12-volt battery. If you use another brand of A23, you might just end up with a ruined A23 and nothing else.

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For more interesting, money-saving projects, visit KipKay Videos.

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