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The 5 Best Reloading Scale for the Money – Digital Reloading Scale Reviewed

Powder, bullets, fraction, shells, buckshot on the wooden It’s crucial that you try to get the best reloading scale you can get if you’re committed to reloading your own ammo. Without a gun powder scale, you simply can’t get the job done.

The reloading scale makes sure that you put in the right amount of ammo in your brass. This makes sure that you’re able to optimize the accuracy and consistency of your ammo when you’re done.

While it’s true that there are still some analog reloading scales around, most people in the industry agree that the best scale for reloading these days will offer digital readouts. You just need to plug it a wall outlet, or pit in batteries.

Top 5 Reloading Scale: Comparison Chart

Here’s a quick overview of our recommended reloading scales, with the key features and capacities.

Reloading Scale Grain Capacity Power Scale Design View on Amazon
Frankford Arsenal DS-750 Digital Reloading Scale 750-grain capacity 2 AAA batteries Scale only Check Price
Hornady 050068 Lock-N-Load Auto Charge 1,000-grain capacity 110V with 220v adaptor Scale with dispenser Check Price
RCBS 98923 Chargemaster Combo Scale/Dispenser 1,500-grain capacity 120V AC Scale with dispenser Check Price
Hornady 050108 Electronic Scale 1,500-grain capacity AC adaptor with 220V adaptor Scale only Check Price
Frankford Arsenal Platinum Series Precision Scale 1,500-grain capacity 110V power supply and 220V adaptor, or 4 AAA batteries Scale only Check Price

Best Picks for Reloading Scale

All out picks are electronic, as we deemed this design better for newbies (and for the vast majority of reloaders as well). Manual reloading scales can be just too fussy for most folks.

All of these reloading scales are also accurate to within one-tenth (1/10) of a grain. That works for most reloaders.

Here are our top 5 reloading scale reviews.

Frankford Arsenal DS-750 Digital Reloading Scale

Sale
Features
  • ACCURACY: 750 grain (50 gram) capacity with 0.1 grain (0.01 gram) accuracy, auto calibration and overload protection
  • EASE OF USE: Features an LCD display with blue backlight, an auto shut-off after 60 seconds and is powered by 2 AAA batteries (included)
  • VERSATILITY: Measures in grains, grams, ounces and carats and features a tare function and counting function
  • DURABLE: Features an integrated protective cover
  • INCLUDES: Powder pan, soft carry case and calibration weight

Last update on 2020-10-29 /  Affiliate Links (#ad)  / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

This is the most affordable reloading scale on this list. The next cheapest costs 3 times as much as the DS-750.

But that’s not to say that its quality is cheap, even though it’s tiny and its size is similar to a smartphone. It’s likely the best powder scale for reloading in its price range.

Your purchase includes the needed 2 AAA batteries, along with the calibration weight, powder pan, and the soft carry case.

This small reloading scale has a 750-grain capacity, while its accuracy is within 0.1 grain. There’s an auto-calibration function, along with some overload protection.

This also comes with a counting function and a tare function. The tare function automatically takes off the weight of the powder pan, so you’re left with the actual powder weight showing on the digital readout.

The LCD display is easy enough to read, with its blue backlighting giving you the weight at a glance. The measurements can be shown in various units, so it can be in grains, grams, ounces, or even in carats if you’re using these for gemstones.

Just let it set for about 30 seconds to warm up. That’s enough time to let the components stabilize before you start to calibrate.

The scale display also gives various readings if there are any problems. If it reads “O-Ld”, then it means you’ve exceeded the maximum weight capacity and you have to remove the extra weight right away.

A “Lo” reading means you need to replace the batteries, while the “UNSE” reading indicates that you need a more stable position for the scale.

The reading you don’t want to see is “OUT2”, which means the scale has been permanently damaged and you need a new one. It’s out of commission for good, either because you’ve dropped it from a great height or you severely exceeded the maximum weight capacity.

This can be a very finicky scale, so you need to baby it. keep it from extreme temperatures, moisture, dirt, dust, vibration, and air currents.

But if you take care of this, it should last for years to come.

Pros
  • Extremely affordable
  • Compact
  • Easy to read LCD display
  • Offers different weight units
  • Comes with counting and tare functions
  • Quick and easy to use, even for newbies
  • Auto-shutoff in 60 seconds
Cons
  • Needs a lot of babying
  • May not show slight weight changes

Hornady 050068 Lock-N-Load Auto Charge

Features
  • High-precision powder measure designed for speed and efficiency
  • Large easy-to-read backlit display and easy-to-operate keypad
  • Extreme precision to within 0.1 grains; scale capacity of 1000 grains
  • Automatic and manual dispense options; trickle function
  • Three speed settings; overcharge protection; one year warranty

Last update on 2020-10-29 /  Affiliate Links (#ad)  / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Now this one is a lot more expensive than the Frankford Arsenal DS-750, but that’s because it’s a combo unit with both the scale and dispenser. The hopper capacity is 1,000 grains.

You can weigh up to 300 grains at a time. This comes with some overcharge protection, but it’s always a good idea to never exceed the charge limits.

This is easy enough to calibrate even if you’re a newbie, with its 10g and 50g calibration weights. Like the other scales on this list, it’s accurate enough to within a tenth of a grain.

The large backlit display is extremely easy to read even at a glance. You also have large buttons with the keypad, along with dedicated function keys for greater efficiency.

These buttons allow you to pick between automatic and manual dispense options. This may be the best automatic reloading scale you can get for your money.

This has a trickler as well, and you can choose from 3 different speed settings for it. You can pick the right trickle speed based on the charge weight, or the size and shape of the powder.

Powder changes are no trouble as well, with a drain on the side for quick cleanups. Just be very certain that you’ve completely emptied the hopper, drain tube, and trickle tube so you don’t end up with a dangerous mix of different powders.

You just need to power this by plugging it onto your wall socket. This needs 110V, but you also have a 220V adapter as part of the purchase.

You do need to wait 15 minutes until the Auto Warmup is done. Only then can you begin calibrating the scale.

That means you can forget about quick measurements. This is meant for dedicated powder weighing sessions when you’re reloading your ammo, and not for fast weight confirmations at any time.

At least afterwards, you’re sure about the consistency of readout accuracy. It’s this consistency that has convinced many people to consider this as their best reloading scale for accuracy.

Pros
  • It’s consistently accurate
  • The 300-grain charge weight capacity comes with overcharge protection
  • The keypads are large and easy to use, with dedicated function keys
  • The backlit digital display is large and easy to read
  • You have automatic and manual dispense options, with 3 speed settings for the trickler
Cons
  • It needs 15 minutes to warm up, before you can even start calibration
  • You should drain this entirely when you’re done weighing

RCBS 98923 Chargemaster Combo Scale/Dispenser

Features
  • Hunting reloading scales
  • Features the ChargeMaster 1500 scale and ChargeMaster Dispenser preassembled to form an unmatched combination of speed and accuracy
  • 1 lb+ capacity powder hopper
  • Use with smokeless powder only

Last update on 2020-10-29 /  Affiliate Links (#ad)  / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Now this one is the most expensive of the lot. But then again, this may be the best reloading scale for pro shooters.

Its many features actually make the Chargemaster a worthwhile investment, and you may want to consider getting this one despite the rather hefty cost. This is what you want to get when weight accuracy is your highest priority.

Just keep in mind that this is only meant for smokeless powder. However, this saves you the time and effort spent having to calibrate the scale when you switch to another type of powder.

The setup here is simple, since the whole thing has been preassembled beforehand. The whole process is quick and easy as well.

All you need to do is to first fill in the hopper with smokeless powder, and you can go up to a pound of it. It’s easy enough to fill the hopper, and you won’t get any spills.

Use the keypad to enter the charge you want, and then press the dispense button and you get the charge you want.

The keypad here comes with memory buttons, so you’re able to quickly enter your most commonly used load recipes. There’s also the trickle button that allows you to put in that last bits of powder into the powder pan.

This does need a bit of warmup, which will take at least 20 minutes. After that, you’ll enjoy consistently accurate weight readings.

If you get an off measure, you’ll get a warning code, which is one of the features that makes this the best reloading scale and dispenser combo for many.

You just need to be very careful when you’re seating your bullets. Place the Chargemaster on a bench that you won’t shake and bump while using it.

When you remove the powder pan from the scale, you have to keep from hitting the charging tube. That may lead to dropping extra grains in your pan.

This is also rather sensitive to extreme temperatures. If it’s too cold, it loses accuracy (according to lots of powder scales for reloading reviews).

Still, it’s rather efficient, and it sure saves you a lot of time. The entire process can shorten what’s normally an hour’s worth of work to less than a quarter of an hour.

If you need the best reloading scale for high hopper capacity for your smokeless powder, this is it.

Pros
  • Very efficient and cuts down on usage time
  • Comes with memory functions for load charges
  • Easy-to-read weight display
  • No more calibration needed
  • Simple setup
Cons
  • Works only for smokeless powder
  • Not cheap at all
  • You need 20 minutes for warmup

Hornady 050108 Electronic Scale

Features
  • Perfect addition to your reloading bench for precision measurement
  • Scale capacity of 1500 grains
  • Scale will weigh powder bullets cases cartridges and more
  • Large LCD display is easy to read
  • Weighs powder precisely to a tenth of a grain

Last update on 2020-10-29 /  Affiliate Links (#ad)  / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

This is a scale-only design, as it’s basically the scale component of the Hornady Lock-N-Load Auto Charge. Your purchase does include 2 calibration weights, a metal powder pan, an AC adaptor, and the 220V adaptor.

This is a bit larger than the tiny Frankford Arsenal DS-750, as it measures 4.8 by 9 by 7.1 inches. It only weighs 2 pounds, though, so which makes it a lightweight reloading scale.

The scale can handle up to 1,500 grains, and the expected accuracy is within the usual one-tenth of a grain. You can use this to weigh not just powder, but bullets and cases as well.

To calibrate this, turn it on and then press the calibration button. You’ll then hear it beep.

That means you can now put on the 10g calibration weight, and then you press that same calibration button again. Repeat the same procedure, but for the 50g calibration weight.

Once you’re done with the calibration, you’ll get the Pass signal on the display. Now you can place the powder pan on the scale, press the “zero” button”, and you can start.

The large size of the scale also gives you a large display, so even a quick glance is enough to tell you the weight.

You also don’t get weight drifts, which means the readings will be consistently accurate. You do need to confirm this every now and then (after about every 10th time you weigh).

The utter consistency of the accuracy saves you from a lot of worry that you’re not getting the right weight for your powder recipes. At the same time, you can weigh your bullets and powder a lot more efficiently.

This should last a long while, with its solid construction and nice finish. Just use the plastic cover that comes with the purchase, to protect it from dust.

This can be the best reloading scale for long range shooting, with its scale capacity and consistent accuracy.

Pros
  • Consistently accurate
  • It’s easy to switch to another weight unit
  • Easy calibration and zeroing
  • Large digital screen
  • Lightweight despite its size
  • The finish resists dirt and grease
Cons
  • It’s not exactly pocket-size like the Frankford Arsenal DS-750
  • The light weight makes it very susceptible to the slightest vibrations

Frankford Arsenal Platinum Series Precision Scale

Sale
Features
  • ACCURACY: 2 calibration weights for 3-point calibration and measures in grains, grams, ounces and carats and features a stability indicator with a 1500 grain (100 gram) capacity and is accurate to 0.1 grain (0.01 gram)
  • EASE OF USE: Runs off 110V, 220V or 4 AAA batteries (included) with an auto shut-off after 180 seconds and a large easy to read back lit display and simple controls
  • VERSATILITY: Features podium indentations to easily index arrow shafts and can measure in tare function
  • DURABLE: Molded plastic storage case
  • INCLUDES: Scale, calibration weights, metal powder pan, clear protective cover, storage case, 110V power supply and 220V adaptor

Last update on 2020-10-29 /  Affiliate Links (#ad)  / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

This is one of the more affordable scales you can get, but many say that this is the best powder scale for the money.

Your purchase includes the scale and other accessories, and you have everything with a molded plastic storage case that lets you bring this along to other places.

Your purchase includes the 110V power supply and 220V adaptor, so you’re ready to plug it in wherever you may be in the world. This can even use 4 AAA batteries, and these batteries are also part of the purchase.

You also get 2 calibration weights, a metal powder pan, and a clear protective cover for the scale itself.

To use this, it’s best if you spend a few minutes to let it warm up first. This offers a 1,500-grain capacity, along with the usual accuracy of within a tenth of a grain.

You have the tare function, and you’re not limited to weighing powder and bullets either. The special indentations here allow you to index your arrow shafts.

The design shape also makes this eminently suitable to work with the Frankford Arsenal Powder Trickler. If you’re getting a trickler from another brand, make sure it can work with a pan that measures 2.5 inches from the side to the center of the pan.

It’s easy enough to read the weight display, with the large display with its backlighting and high contrast. The controls also allow you to change weight units without too much fuss.

The accuracy is terrific and consistent, as long as you’re careful where you put this scale when you use it. Just make sure its location doesn’t have aby vibrations or strange electromagnetic interference, and it should be kept from the heating or air conditioner.

When you’re done, you don’t have to worry about forgetting to turn it off. This will automatically shut itself off after 3 minutes of non-use.

Pros
  • It comes with a molded plastic case, with slots for every component inside
  • You get 2 adaptors plus the batteries you need
  • You can easily switch between measurement units like grams, ounces, and even carats for gems
  • The backlit display is easy to read due to the backlighting, large size, and high contrast
  • It’s not all that expensive
Cons
  • Some tricklers may not work with the size of the pan
  • It’s best to warm it up first for a few minutes
  • It can be a bit fussy with extreme temperatures (best for room temperature only)

 

What is the Best Reloading Scale?

Digital Reloading Scale with LCD Display for Reloading

For most people, the best reloading scale has to be electronic. The best mechanical reloading scale models simply aren’t as popular these days.

Sure, the mechanical scales don’t need electricity, but it’s too fussy to work with and the work can progress too slowly.

You’re also not able to get the accuracy that the digital display can offer.

It’s up to you to pick between a scale-only design or a scale-with-dispenser combo. The scale-dispenser design is much more convenient and efficient, but it does increase the cost dramatically.

Just make sure that what you get is easy to work with, and that you consistently get accurate readings. The best reloading digital scale also should be robust enough to last for years.

How Does A Reloading Scale Work?

How a reloading scale works depends on the type of reloading scale you have. However, the basic design is simple.

The reloading scale has extremely sensitive sensors that can weigh even a single grain of powder. In fact, in the reloading scales we’ve included in our recommended list, they’re all accurate to within a tenth of a grain!

You do need to “warm up” the scales first even before you calibrate it.

That means the sensors need to stabilize first. It may also need to acclimatize to the temperature in the room you’re working in.

You can put the item you want to weight (whether it’s the bullet case or the powder in a pan) on the scale, and the weight displays on the LCD display.

In many of these scales, you have simple controls to let you pick the weight unit you want to use (grain, grams, or ounces).

These simpler scales can work with a separate dispenser or trickler.

However, some of the scale models have a combo design which mixes both the scale and dispenser together. The dispenser can offer trickle options with different speeds.

Things to Consider Before Buying Reloading Scale

While the cost is important, you need to consider the following factors as well to make sure you get the best reloading scale.

Accuracy

Your scale should be accurate enough to get the weight right within 1/10 of a grain.

The most accurate reloading scale you need doesn’t have to be more accurate than this. That lets you make sure that you’re putting in exactly the amount of powder you need in your ammo.

What you really want is a scale that’s consistently accurate for best results. Even if you work the whole day, your weight readings should be within a tenth of a grain.

Grain Capacity

The minimum here is at least a charge capacity of 300 grains. You need greater capacity so that you can also weigh bullet casings and loaded rounds.

Power Options

You can go with a scale that uses an electrical cord. The adaptor should match your home’s electrical voltage, but it’s best if you have both 110V or 220V adaptors so you can use the scale anywhere.

For true portability, you can go with a unit that can be powered by batteries. It’s more convenient if your purchase already includes the batteries you need.

Many of the best reloading scales offer both electrical cord and battery options.

Easy-to-Read Digital Display

The LCD display should be large, and it also should have backlighting. It’s great if you also get high contrast so a quick glance tells you the weight right away.

Time for Setup and Use

Plenty of scales do need some time for “warming up”. It’s great if this is only a few minutes, though some may need 15 or even 20 minutes for everything to settle and acclimatize.

In some cases, you may want to acclimatize the device for an hour or more beforehand.

Ease of Use

The controls must be simple and easy to use. It’s more convenient if you can just press a single button for various specialized functions.

Read the reloading scale review articles for each model, so you’ll have an idea of how easy it is to use.

Different Weight Units

Many of the best reloading scales offer units such as grains, grams, and ounces. Some also offer a carat weight unit, which is great for weighing gemstones.

Durability

Many of these devices are not designed for careless use. That’s why you have to be very careful with each one of them.

The best-case scenario is that you have a tough case in which you can put the scale away safely. It’s also better if your purchase comes with a dust cover for a large scale (especially the scale-dispenser designs).

Types of Reloading Scale

There are 3 main types of reloading scales.

Mechanical Scale

Some mechanical scales are quite simple in its design, but others can be much more complicated. However, these things generally feature a graduated scale and mass slider.

You’ll want more beams with the mechanical graduation, since more beams give you greater accuracy. The best beam reloading scale will offer at least a 0.01 graduation for mechanical scales.

The main advantage of these mechanical scales is that you don’t need electricity to power it. You can even use this when you’re out hunting.

However, this isn’t as simple to use, especially if you’re a newbie to reloading. The mechanical reloading scale for vets may be too complicated for newbies.

Digital Scales

You don’t even need the best digital reloading scale to realize the many benefits of this type of reloading scale. These are often quite accurate, using calibrators to confirm its accuracy.

The defining feature here is the LCD display, which then gives you an exact reading of the weight. You also often have function keys and a keypad for extra functions.

You can use an electrical cord to power these devices, or you can go with batteries. many of the best reloading scales offer both options.

Digital Scales with Dispensers

While the regular digital scales can work with a separate dispenser or trickler, you can opt for a design that combines both scale and dispenser components into a single model.

This can offer even more advanced features, and you should read the digital reloading scale reviews find out about these features. Some may offer automatic dispense functions, which can then dispense a specific amount of powder to match whatever weight you want for your load recipes.

Which One is Perfect for You?

Electronic Powder Scale 1500 Grain CapacityThe perfect reloading scale for you is the one that meets all your requirements. For most people, the “perfect” reloading scale is an electronic device with a digital display.

  • It should cost within your allotted budget. The price ranges from about $30 to almost $400, depending on the features you’re offered.
  • It has to be accurate. The minimum accuracy level you can use is 0.1 grains.
  • You should find it easy to use. That means its grain capacity matches your powder needs, the reading display has to be easy to read at a glance, and you can make adjustments without wasting too much time and effort.
  • It should be able to last for years. Of course, you have to take care of these precision instruments properly, but it should have a protective case for easier maintenance and storage.

With the perfect reloading scale, reloading your own ammo becomes a more efficient process. You can make sure of the weights so that you can optimize your accuracy, and at the same time you’re saving money in the long run.

How to Use a Reloading Scale?

Each model of reloading scale in the market will have its own rules regarding how to use it properly. It’s essential that you read the manual for the reloading scale carefully, so that you can use it safely and get the results you need.

Here are some of the general rules:

  • Place the scale in a level and stable surface. Don’t let it near anything that might vibrate (such as your reloading press).
  • Plug it in or put in the batteries.
  • Warm it up first, to stabilize and acclimatize the components.
  • Calibrate the scale using the calibration weights. The process may differ depending on the model, but in the end the display should show the exact weight of the calibration weight.
  • Be very careful when you place any weight on the scale. Also, you shouldn’t leave any weight on the scale for too long .
  • When you remove the weight, the display should read zero.
  • Place the powder pan on the scale, and then press the “zero” button to set the weight to zero (disregarding the weight of the powder pan).
  • Use the controls to pick the weight unit you want the display to show.
  • Use your dispenser or trickler to put the powder on the pan.
  • Make sure you maintain proper calibration by pressing the zero button every 10 times you weigh your powder.
  • When you’re done, turn the device off. Put it in its storage case or place a dust cover over it.

Top Reloading Scale Brands

It’s best that you limit your options to the more well-known brands in the reloading equipment industry, if you want to make sure that you’re getting a good reloading scale.

These brands have spent years earning well-deserved reputations for quality and innovation. You can expect these reloading scales to be built with stringent quality control standards, while you’re able to expect the brand to honor its warranty obligations.

The brands you should check out include the following:

Hornady

This is one of the more famous brands in the industry, as it’s been around since 1949. They’ve been building reloading tools for 70 years, and they sure know what they’re doing.

Frank Arsenal

This is the go-to brand you should check out for simpler, more affordable scales without an attached dispenser. It’s one of the more famous brands in the reloading industry.

Their products are precision machines that are able to match the accuracy of more expensive scales. They specialize in easy-to-use scales that newbies will really appreciate.

RCBS

This is also another old brand, as its history in the reloading industry spans more than 60 years. They also offer other terrific reloading equipment, especially reloading presses.

In fact, you can get everything you need for reloading from just this single brand. They also offer entire kits with all the tools you need for reloading.

Who Makes the Best Reloading Scale?

If you base the answer on popularity, then the answer has to be Frank Arsenal. The typical Frankford Arsenal scale tends to offer high praise, whether the review was written by a newbie or an expert.

Their reloading scales aren’t expensive, but they’re perennial contenders for the best reloading scale for the money. If you need something simple to use without busting your budget, with the accuracy you absolute need, then Frank Arsenal can provide you with a reloading scale you can use.

Final Verdict

While we included scale-dispenser designs on our list, for many the best digital scale for reloading here is the comparatively affordable Frankford Arsenal Platinum Series Precision Scale. You then can just pick the dispenser you want to work with it.

This works with 110V, 220V, or batteries. It’s extremely reliable and accurate as well.

The hard-plastic case protects it in storage, while you’re also able to bring the scale anywhere. It’s simple to use, and with proper care it can last for years.

Of course, for you the best reloading scale may combine the scale with the dispenser component. In the end, the best reloading scale is whatever works for your situation!

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