Rifle Barrel?

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    • #3321

      What would you people say would be your max barrel over all lenght on a Bench Gun or a F-Class set up in 308 or 6mm br?Would you see the need for a extra heavy or a lighter weight barrel and what would you say would be your max weight on your complete rifle?

    • #3323
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      I don’t own a .308 but Jimmy does. He recently built one with a 30″ barrel and can’t seem to get any more velocity than he was getting with a 26″ using varget powder. In my opinion another powder should milk a little more out of that 30 inches.

    • #3325
      Al Barr
      Participant

      Surrell, my tube gun barrel in ..308 is a medium Palma 31″. Total rifle weight is 14#; so I could probably use a heavy Palma at the same length and make weight.

      The longer the barrel, the better your “follow through” needs to be.

    • #3336
      Wynne Echols
      Keymaster

      Surrell, most shooting disciplines have a weight limit. I have heard Britt mention several times that when putting different components together, weight quickly becomes a problem. Barrel types and lengths are a variable that can manipulated. Someone might can help me here, but I have also read where after a certain length of barrel, you do not get much benefit. WWE

    • #3338
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Wynne, Sense you mentioned weight and a point of diminishing return when it comes to barrel length, I will take a shot at this one.

      Barrel length has always ( Historically ) had two advantages. One is a longer barrel provided a longer sight radius, and two there is a velocity gain with certain powders as it relates to a longer barrel giving the powder more time to burn, thus providing more FPS. Today we almost all use a scope, so in that instance sight radius is not a concern. As to powder burn there have been hundreds of test done starting with a long barrel and cutting it off an inch at a time and recording the loss in velocity as the barrel got shorter. This is were the point of diminishing returns come in, at what length is the best advantage reached?

      Today there is a very important advantage in barrel weight. It provides weight to a competition gun. The longer the barrel the more it weighs. When a rifle and set-up are in sinc this can aid the tracking of the rifle. You can if you just go crazy make this a negative with to much weight and too heavy of a barrel when used with the wrong set-up. Set-up being rest, and bags etc.

      Then there is also the matter of heat in the barrel. Common thinking says the heavier and thicker a barrel is, the longer it takes to get to temp. or even to hot. There is a lot of truth to this. However once that long barrel reaches that very hot temp it maintains that heat longer, so where is the trade off?

      Heat is a barrel killer, or maybe I should say to much heat is a barrel killer. F-Class with its long strings of fire can play hell with barrel life. The cartridge you are shooting also plays a part here as well. The more powder you burn the more heat you build. So what is right and what is the wrong barrel. figure that one out and someone someplace will pay big money to find that answer.

      The picture below is a 10 shot group I shot at 1,000 yds with a Winchester model 1885 High Wall, chambered in 45/100, it was shoot with 2FG black powder, shooting a custom cast bullet that weighed 650 grns. The barrel was 36″ long and 2 1/4″ in diameter and with Iron Sights no scope, rear sight was a long range Vernier Scale aperture sight, front sight was a Hooded aperture as well and had a level inside the hood. It was not shot from a rest but off of cross sticks and no rear bag allowed. Muzzle velocity was 1180fps but once it got to going that 650 grain bullet just kept on cranking.

      So what length is correct man that is a crap shoot. Me I’m going to shoot just as long a barrel as I can find, if it doesn’t work I will cut it off a little at a time until it does work. Can’t do that with a short barrel as it is just terrible trying to stretch them critters.

      Gunny

      • #3353
        Wynne Echols
        Keymaster

        Gunny, I am very impressed with the examples that you use to validate the topics of which you speak. Good stuff. You mentioned the long strings shot at F-Class matches and the possible heat build up. I did some load development this spring on the .223 that I shoot FTR and seemed to identify two nodes 2 grains of Varget apart. 22.5 grains of Varget @ 2600+ fps and 24.5 grains of Varget @ approx. 2800 fps. I have elected to shoot the slower load at the last three matches with okay results and I am hoping by the November mid-range match that the temperature is a good deal lower so that I can shoot the faster load for some comparison. I would assume that a lighter load that will perform okay is better for barrel life. Would you agree? Thanks, WWE

    • #3350
      Al Barr
      Participant

      Roland, I’ll bet that black powder load set off seismic and smoke alarms in the area.

    • #3354
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Wynne, In theory your lighter load will produce a longer barrel life, or at least should. Now with that said what is the trade off ( there is always a trade off ) the 2 grains difference in these two loads would be insignificant as it pertains to barrel life. The difference could be so small that it makes no difference at all. If the 2 grain difference should not be the reason not to shot the hotter load, that should be based on which shoots better.

      Al, Yea it does raise a smoke cloud alright. The load I shot in that 45/100 was 107 grains of 2fg Swiss brand black Powder and a Winchester large Pistol primer set it off.

      Funny thing is there was a guy there at that shoot shooting a 1878 Borchardt and duplexing his load with Reloader 7. He also was shooting a 45/100 and a 528 grain Postell bullet. He told me that he had 10% of the load in the reloader 7. So that would be 10 grains of smokeless and 90 grains of Black Powder and in his case he was using Goex Cartridge Grade granulation which works out to just a little smaller than 1 FG powder. He laid down on his mat to get his sight settings at a 1,000 yds. When he touched that thing off it moved him straight back by over a foot, I mean he just slid back. The flame that came out of that barrel was at least 10 feet long. Needless to say he didn’t shoot very many bullets and with drew from the competition.

      Gunny

    • #3358
      Al Barr
      Participant

      I would love to see photos of the old smoke poles belching flame!

    • #3367

      Thanks all I do love my heavy long barrel 308 just wait till I break out my 308 bench gun it’s longer and heavy……

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