WidenersMidSouth Shooters SupplyLee PrecisionRotoMetals2
RepackboxADvertise hereTitan ReloadingInline Fabrication

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 32

Thread: Lee "ZERO Error" Target Reloading Kit Experience ???

  1. #1
    Boolit Buddy PBSmith's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    361

    Lee "ZERO Error" Target Reloading Kit Experience ???

    I've read about these on the web at various forums and have mixed impressions as to whether they're worth the money and time.

    Any members here who have used them?

    Is money better put toward quality 7/8 x14 benchrest dies or the arbor press-hand die way?

    I'm loading for calibers .222 Rem and .220 Swift, jacketed and not cast. The rifles are heavy-barrel varmint equipment (commercial actions and barrels) and not full-blown benchrest machines, so I am not expecting groups any better than 1/4-3/8 MOA, if that.

    Put another way, I am not the Houston Warehouse.

    Look forward to reading your responses.
    Last edited by PBSmith; 02-17-2020 at 10:33 PM.

  2. #2
    Boolit Master


    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    4,056
    I had one in .222 many years ago. It is slow and I was not able to achieve any improvement in accuracy. YMMV
    Don Verna

    NRA Endowment Member

  3. #3
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    South Western NC
    Posts
    2,068
    Don, if you mean what I think you mean, that Lee kit includes a simple but effective inside neck reamer which can help you clean up bad bottle neck cases. No loader, no die, can load straight ammo in bad necks. I don't have one but wish I did.

    I do have a modest (expensive) assortment of neck turners and reamers and they do make a difference (if the rifle is good enough to see it) but at much more effort and cost than Lee's Zero Error reamer. My guess about why it failed in the market is that those who just wanted to make ammo that went BANG weren't interested in neck reaming and those who did bother with necks didn't think such an affordable kit would amount too much. I wish I had half dozen of them. Well, okay, a full dozen! Or more?

  4. #4
    Boolit Buddy PBSmith's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    361
    Quote Originally Posted by 1hole View Post
    Don, if you mean what I think you mean, that Lee kit includes a simple but effective inside neck reamer which can help you clean up bad bottle neck cases. No loader, no die, can load straight ammo in bad necks. I don't have one but wish I did.

    I do have a modest (expensive) assortment of neck turners and reamers and they do make a difference (if the rifle is good enough to see it) but at much more effort and cost than Lee's Zero Error reamer. My guess about why it failed in the market is that those who just wanted to make ammo that went BANG weren't interested in neck reaming and those who did bother with necks didn't think such an affordable kit would amount too much. I wish I had half dozen of them. Well, okay, a full dozen! Or more?
    That's the one I'm talking about. At one point in its brief life, "Zero Error" might not have been part of the kit's name. In any event, this kit had the reamer you're talking about for working the INSIDE of case necks, something that most frown upon today. Possibly those frowning never used the Lee kit. From what little I've read, I gather it's a different approach than what accuracy bugs do today with outside neck reaming..

    Possibly one of the reasons it didn't catch on is that Lee, to my knowledge, was never known as an accuracy-oriented company. Some guys claim the thing was useless, others swear by them. I've never seen targets to substantiate the praise sometimes given.
    Last edited by PBSmith; 02-17-2020 at 10:36 PM.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master
    TNsailorman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Northeast Tennessee Hills
    Posts
    1,529
    At one time I think the National Bench Rifle Record for a group was held by the Lee Zero Error Loader. I have had them in 30-06 and 8x57 for many years now and I like them. In 8x57 one is especially handy if you are re-sizing 30-06 into 8x57. The necks or your re-sized case will have a thicker neck than necessary and using the inside neck reamer does the trick. I have found some WW II 30-06 with too thick necks and inside neck reamed them also back to proper specs.. As far as I am concerned the Zero Loader was the best thing Lee ever put on the market. Too bad they discontinued them. my opinion anyway, james

  6. #6
    Boolit Master gnostic's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Somewhere over the rainbow...
    Posts
    554
    Quote Originally Posted by PBSmith View Post
    I've read about these on the web at various forums and have mixed impressions as to whether they're worth the money and time.

    Any members here who have used them?

    Is money better put toward quality 7/8 x14 benchrest dies or the arbor press-hand die way?

    I'm loading for calibers .222 Rem and .220 Swift, jacketed and not cast. The rifles are heavy-barrel varmint equipment (commercial actions and barrels) and not full-blown benchrest machines, so I am not expecting groups any better than 1/4-3/8 MOA, if that.

    Put another way, I am not the Houston Warehouse.

    Look forward to reading your responses.
    Your experience might be different, I've never shot, or seen a 1/4'' group....

  7. #7
    Boolit Buddy PBSmith's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    361
    Quote Originally Posted by TNsailorman View Post
    At one time I think the National Bench Rifle Record for a group was held by the Lee Zero Error Loader. I have had them in 30-06 and 8x57 for many years now and I like them. In 8x57 one is especially handy if you are re-sizing 30-06 into 8x57. The necks or your re-sized case will have a thicker neck than necessary and using the inside neck reamer does the trick. I have found some WW II 30-06 with too thick necks and inside neck reamed them also back to proper specs.. As far as I am concerned the Zero Loader was the best thing Lee ever put on the market. Too bad they discontinued them. my opinion anyway, james
    Thanks for that report. Do I understand correctly that the inside of the neck is reamed while the case is still held in the outside neck sizer? And is the reamed neck a taper affair?

    Looking at all the parts in those kits, it's easy to see where production costs could have gotten out of hand.
    Last edited by PBSmith; 02-18-2020 at 10:19 AM.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master



    skeettx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Amarillo, Texas
    Posts
    3,357
    I Like them and they will produce wonderfully small groups,
    I have a number of them, they are slow but do work.

    Rem 40-X in 222 Mag will shoot 10 shot .25 inch groups with my set.

    Mike
    Last edited by skeettx; 02-18-2020 at 04:33 PM.

  9. #9
    Boolit Buddy PBSmith's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    361
    Quote Originally Posted by skeettx View Post
    I Like them and they will produce wonderfully small groups,
    I have a number of them, they are slow but do work.

    Rem 40-X in 222 Mag will shoot 10 shot .25 inch groups with my set.

    Mike
    Am I correct in thinking you didn't get groups like that with traditional reloading dies?

  10. #10
    Boolit Master


    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    4,056
    The one I owned had the neck reamer. I was shooting a .222 M700 Varmint HB with Weaver K12 scope and was getting 5/8-3/4" groups using the 50 gr Blitzking bullets. It was my first CF rifle...50 years ago...and the Lee made my first reloads. I was shooting small bore so I thought I was a decent shot but maybe if I had been a better reloader I could have done better...never got below 1/2". But back then (heck 50 years ago) anything under 1 MOA was better than good so I was happy.

    Now, I have a $225 T/C Compass that will stay under 1" with loads made using standard dies on a Co-Ax. It will not shoot sub 1/2" so my expectations are less than most.

    I was very pleased with the loads made on the Lee but was able to do as well with the Co-Ax. Likely due to my abilities and not the tool. When I sold mine on eBay I was shocked at how much I got for it, so there are folks out there that think highly of them...so they must work well.
    Don Verna

    NRA Endowment Member

  11. #11
    Boolit Master



    skeettx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Amarillo, Texas
    Posts
    3,357
    PBSmith
    Only if I used the special $200 bench rest dies and a floating shell holder
    Mike
    NRA Benefactor 2004 USAF RET 1971-95

  12. #12
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Central VA
    Posts
    3,230
    I've never shot fixed ammo for that kind of accuracy in a rifle (I breech seat in Schuetzen bench) but I've heard some pretty impressive results described by those who have.

    OP, look for an incoming PM from a good friend of mine that may be of some interest.

    The only experience I have had is with the set's great priming tool which IMHO is the best one Lee ever made! That one item suggests to me that the rest of the set ought to be a pretty good thing.

    Froggie
    "It aint easy being green!"

  13. #13
    Boolit Grand Master



    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Southwestern Ohio
    Posts
    8,310
    PBSMITH;
    I just sent you a PM ( this forum). Looking forward to hearing from you.

    Dale53

  14. #14
    Vendor Sponsor

    W.R.Buchanan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Ojai CA
    Posts
    7,929
    All the Lee Tools are, are inexpensive versions of Wilson Hand Dies. If you run them with a Small Arbor Press or your Drill Press used like an arbor press you will get nearly the same results.

    If you beat on them with a hammer, maybe not as good results, but usually still acceptable.

    If you are thinking you are going to get 1/4" groups at 100 yards then one must take into consideration one's ability to actually shoot that good.

    Usually this is where we find ourselves lacking.

    My .02

    Randy.
    "It's not how well you do what you know how to do,,,It's how well you do what you DON'T know how to do!"
    www.buchananprecisionmachine.com

  15. #15
    Boolit Buddy
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Back among the Sunflowers!!!
    Posts
    217
    I have 3 sets I acquired in a grab bag purchase several years ago. I always tell myself I’m gonna try them when I see these threads. I shot with a guy years ago that swore by them. He produced 1/3 moa 243 loads consistently. It was in a custom rifle though, so not super impressive when I look back now. I need to dig mine out and do some testing vs my traditional loaded ammo. I can see this being a good lesson for my son that’s just learning and pop as well.

  16. #16
    Boolit Master
    TNsailorman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Northeast Tennessee Hills
    Posts
    1,529
    Quote Originally Posted by PBSmith View Post
    Thanks for that report. Do I understand correctly that the inside of the neck is reamed while the case is still held in the outside neck sizer? And is the reamed neck a taper affair?

    Looking at all the parts in those kits, it's easy to see where production costs could have gotten out of hand.
    Yes, the case is pushed/driven into the die and while the case is still in the die, you put the neck reamer into the top of the case and ream the neck. james

  17. #17
    Boolit Bub GWS's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2019
    Location
    New Mexico
    Posts
    39
    Don't know if the following is the tool you mean, but I've never heard them called Zero Error.
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_0907.jpg 
Views:	18 
Size:	61.1 KB 
ID:	257118
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Lee Target Loader.jpg 
Views:	15 
Size:	62.5 KB 
ID:	257119
    This one is in .243 Win. and I used it once......it was my first attempt at reloading.

    I took the resulting box of 20 reloads out in the hills and set up a target about 100 yards away. I shot the first round and hit the target.....as my brother reported....he using field glasses. So I shot another and he said "missed". I shot two more and each time he said missed. So I gave up and walked to the target. There was one hole alright, but it was obvious that it was bigger than one bullet's worth......all four went in the same hole pretty much.

    I was a kid, maybe 21, and my brother was 4 years younger..... I had such an un-fun time loading the stupid things.....that I never loaded another round until I bought a Rock Chucker. Kids don't have much patience do they......I sure didn't. Never used it again......I think the tool cost $25.

    I still remember the components.....Winchester 760....Winchester primers and brass....Sierra 100 grain bullets....hollow points.....long time ago. Gun? A Remington 600 Mohawk I bought for $105 new. The Winchester brass I used was once shot out of the same gun before I reloaded it. Still have the 600:

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_0904 (2).jpg 
Views:	8 
Size:	95.7 KB 
ID:	257120
    Last edited by GWS; 02-19-2020 at 10:34 PM.

  18. #18
    Boolit Buddy PBSmith's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    361
    GW, thanks for that great report. Yes, that's the rig. I don't know where the "Zero Error" came from, if that was a Lee label or if another party tagged it??

    Your success story reminds me of my early casting effort with .45-70 trapdoors at age 16. Didn't know what I was doing. Threw my FFg down the tube and stuck that 405 Lyman slug into the end of the case. Tried one off a tire to see if the gun blew up. It didn't, Shot next three into a golf ball sized group and watched the Mauser guys scratch their heads.

    Sixty years later, with hundreds $$ invested in equipment, I sometimes can;t do that well with modern cartridges.
    Last edited by PBSmith; 02-19-2020 at 10:17 AM.

  19. #19
    Boolit Buddy PBSmith's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    361
    Quote Originally Posted by Gofaaast View Post
    I have 3 sets I acquired in a grab bag purchase several years ago. I always tell myself I’m gonna try them when I see these threads. I shot with a guy years ago that swore by them. He produced 1/3 moa 243 loads consistently. It was in a custom rifle though, so not super impressive when I look back now. I need to dig mine out and do some testing vs my traditional loaded ammo. I can see this being a good lesson for my son that’s just learning and pop as well.
    Go,
    Sounds like a worthwhile project. Please do report if you follow through.

  20. #20
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Eastern WY
    Posts
    940
    Much of the success for shooting small groups is found in cartridge straightness along with bullet quality. Cartridge fit in the chamber also plays a role. Sometimes 'thick' necks help with bullet alignment. Uniform bullet pull, based on brass quality, anneal, and sizing also plays a part. Bullet quality today is far different than 20-30 years ago. The quality of cartridge brass, the uniformity of case necks have come a long way also. Starting with modern new quality brass can avoid much fussing. Using a tubing micrometer, check your brass neck consistency, maybe neck turning will help, maybe not. While expensive, Lapua and some others save much brass prep AND povide better/smaller groups. I have all the'neat' stuff, but still find cartridge straightness key.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check