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#5442273 - 11/25/14 09:03 AM Alright gun nuts-Barrel break in question
txtrophy85 Offline
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Registered: 08/12/05
Posts: 22039
How important is it to"break-in" a barrel ?

Every new gun I have bought I have put a scope on it, took it to the ranged and sighted it in, and went hunting. I don't pour shot after shot down a hot barrel, etc. but as far as shooting once, cleaning, shooting again,cleaning repeat, etc I've never done it

Is breaking in a barrel a must do or something the manufactures are touting to CTA in case of a poor shooting gun?
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#5442290 - 11/25/14 09:11 AM Re: Alright gun nuts-Barrel break in question [Re: txtrophy85]
FiremanJG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 17893
Loc: Wolfe City, TX
Here we go again. Been about two months...

My take, clean the dickens out of a brand new barrel, foul it with 20 rounds, and do load work up. Shoot until it stops shooting well. May be 50 rounds, may be 500 rounds.
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#5442293 - 11/25/14 09:13 AM Re: Alright gun nuts-Barrel break in question [Re: FiremanJG]
dee Online   content
Extreme Tracker

Registered: 04/10/10
Posts: 4664
Loc: Red River way
Originally Posted By: FiremanJG
Here we go again. Been about two months...

My take, clean the dickens out of a brand new barrel, foul it with 20 rounds, and do load work up. Shoot until it stops shooting well. May be 50 rounds, may be 500 rounds.


X2

For what it's worth the throat is the only thing that would need "broke in" anyway.
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#5442322 - 11/25/14 09:30 AM Re: Alright gun nuts-Barrel break in question [Re: txtrophy85]
iliketohunt Online   sleepy
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Registered: 09/08/10
Posts: 14448
Loc: Weatherford, TX
I've never done it either. Seems like a waste of my time just for hunting. I'm not a big "shooter" though so I don't care to spend time at a rifle range. I can usually keep a box of shells a couple years unless varmint hunting.
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#5442357 - 11/25/14 09:51 AM Re: Alright gun nuts-Barrel break in question [Re: txtrophy85]
kmon1 Offline
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Registered: 09/27/06
Posts: 20293
Loc: Texas
I have only done the break in on one rifle and their break in was 5 shots, clean, 5 shots, clean for 20 shots. That is one of the most accurate rifles I own and probably would have been no matter what the break in.

Most just get cleaned and shot until accuracy drops off then cleaned and shot more.
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#5442366 - 11/25/14 09:54 AM Re: Alright gun nuts-Barrel break in question [Re: iliketohunt]
crapicat Offline
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Registered: 10/13/13
Posts: 383
Loc: Grandview
Originally Posted By: iliketohunt
I've never done it either. Seems like a waste of my time just for hunting. I'm not a big "shooter" though so I don't care to spend time at a rifle range. I can usually keep a box of shells a couple years unless varmint hunting.


I have bought many used rifles in my life...most have never had the barrel "broke in"...if I like the group from the gun (and the gun), I will break in the barrel and keep it for a shooter. Hope this comment answers your question.

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#5442534 - 11/25/14 11:25 AM Re: Alright gun nuts-Barrel break in question [Re: txtrophy85]
colt45 Offline
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Registered: 08/19/06
Posts: 5390
Loc: bastrop county
this topic need to be blocked hammer
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#5442877 - 11/25/14 02:34 PM Re: Alright gun nuts-Barrel break in question [Re: colt45]
catslayer Offline
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Registered: 12/11/12
Posts: 971
Loc: Straight out of Johnson County
Originally Posted By: colt45
this topic need to be blocked hammer


agreed... that or somebody with a bunch of time and money needs to do a real experiment.

Say build 6 rifles, one don't break in, and then try different "popular methods" on the other 5. Then compare group size at say 200 shot locked down off a sled or something... it wouldn't be "statistically valid" but honestly I would like to see it and would put more weight in this than any other "experiments" I have seen involving break in.
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#5447319 - 11/28/14 02:31 PM Re: Alright gun nuts-Barrel break in question [Re: txtrophy85]
blackcoal Offline
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Registered: 01/19/12
Posts: 7568
Loc: 60 Mi North of DFW
50 different controlled tests by 50 different shooters on 50 different guns would not change the results on this subject. Even if the results of the tests were the same and led to the same final report, there would still be people who would disagree.

Does it really matter to most people ?? NO
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#5448041 - 11/29/14 07:13 AM Re: Alright gun nuts-Barrel break in question [Re: kmon1]
Texas Dan Online   content
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Registered: 07/28/08
Posts: 11256
Originally Posted By: kmon1
I have only done the break in on one rifle and their break in was 5 shots, clean, 5 shots, clean for 20 shots. That is one of the most accurate rifles I own and probably would have been no matter what the break in.

Most just get cleaned and shot until accuracy drops off then cleaned and shot more.



My thoughts as well.

A barrel that has been properly broken in will be far less likely to produce clean bore "flyers" or first shots that go astray. People who don't go through the added effort and just leave their barrels dirty never see a flyer and feel they are somehow better for it. However, ANY powder residue left in a barrel WILL hold moisture that impacts the steel over time. It is the moisture, rather than the residue, that causes the damage.

Take the added time, effort, and expense to break in the barrel, and you will have an accurate shooter, clean bore or not.
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#5448078 - 11/29/14 07:40 AM Re: Alright gun nuts-Barrel break in question [Re: txtrophy85]
charlesb Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 04/07/10
Posts: 1408
Loc: West Texas mountains
I've heard lots of expert opinions about the benefits of a dirty bore.

Nonetheless, I clean my rifles thoroughly between trips to the range or the field and when new, they are broken in properly.

I get really great accuracy. Most rifles will shoot well out of a clean barrel, after being broken in properly. - That's the only ones that I keep. If a rifle will not group well out of a cold, clean barrel but must have a coating of carbon and smears of copper inside to perform, then it's not for me.

- But that's just me... If you are happiest shooting a dirty rifle, then that's what is best for you.

Personal confidence in your weapon makes a big difference when hunting. Whatever gives you that sense of confidence is what you should use.
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#5448263 - 11/29/14 09:27 AM Re: Alright gun nuts-Barrel break in question [Re: txtrophy85]
DStroud Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 11/02/11
Posts: 1156
Loc: Waco
The ritual of "break-in that some recommend is what I have trouble with. There is no magic ritual that will ensure a good barrel. If you do not have a bore scope you are just guessing on what you are accomplishing anyway. The folks that say they "cleaned" their barrels may have or may not have a clean barrel and without a bore scope you will really never know.
I have access to one and while almost all my guns had nice clean barrels when I cleaned as I normally do (3) of them were NOT clean. The three all had something in common... factory barrels. You have not seen ugly until you check out a Savage barrel thru a Bore Scope(mine looked like beavers had chewed the hole in the barrel) and the amazing thing is that it shoots fantastic... so much for the break-in ritual. Two of them had streaks of copper that was relatively easy to remove once I finally went thru about 2-4 so-called copper removers that I will not say do not work BUT Not fast enough for my impatience.
The other had HARD carbon buildup and man it was tough to remove. I will also note I never shot this gun more than 15-20 times without cleaning good or so I thought. None of the so called carbon removers fazed it. JB's bore paste took it out quick though and all was good.

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#5448282 - 11/29/14 10:02 AM Re: Alright gun nuts-Barrel break in question [Re: Texas Dan]
iliketohunt Online   sleepy
THF Celebrity

Registered: 09/08/10
Posts: 14448
Loc: Weatherford, TX
Originally Posted By: Texas Dan
Originally Posted By: kmon1
I have only done the break in on one rifle and their break in was 5 shots, clean, 5 shots, clean for 20 shots. That is one of the most accurate rifles I own and probably would have been no matter what the break in.

Most just get cleaned and shot until accuracy drops off then cleaned and shot more.



My thoughts as well.

A barrel that has been properly broken in will be far less likely to produce clean bore "flyers" or first shots that go astray. People who don't go through the added effort and just leave their barrels dirty never see a flyer and feel they are somehow better for it. However, ANY powder residue left in a barrel WILL hold moisture that impacts the steel over time. It is the moisture, rather than the residue, that causes the damage.

Take the added time, effort, and expense to break in the barrel, and you will have an accurate shooter, clean bore or not.


And the millions of regular hunters that have accurate rifles without break in?
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#5448576 - 11/29/14 02:19 PM Re: Alright gun nuts-Barrel break in question [Re: txtrophy85]
charlesb Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 04/07/10
Posts: 1408
Loc: West Texas mountains
Accurate is a relative term. Hunters with "accurate" dirty rifles that were never broken in properly have no way of knowing how much more accurate that same rifle could have been, if treated properly. Also: For many hunters, a 2-3" group at 100 yards is 'accurate', and in most cases it really is plenty accurate enough.

If one assumes though, that 'accurate' rifles would not have been more accurate if treated properly, then they are making a mighty big assumption, there.

I use my bore-scope to keep track of the condition of my rifle's barrels. Owning a bore-scope has allowed me to watch the process of barrel break-in proceed with a few of my guns, and to monitor the progression of throat erosion and heat-cracking on some of the magnums.

If you don't keep the gun clean though, all you get to see is carbon build-up, and copper smears.

Unfortunately the bore-scope is not portable enough to carry with me to the gun shop or a gun show, so there have been a number of occasions when the bore scope could only tell me too late that I had made an unwise investment in a used firearm that I had brought home. - Most particularly one time with a beautiful, scratch-free Parker-Hale in .243 Winchester that had its throat totally barbequed by somebody playing "Rifleman", shooting it rapidly without letting it cool between shots.

It was no longer accurate, which explains why I got it for such a 'good' price I suppose.

After a few experiences like that, I no longer buy used guns in magnum chamberings, or in over-bore chamberings like the .243 Winchester. If I want one of those now I buy it new, ignoring stories about the 7mm Rem mag that was only shot twice a year by a little old church lady who needs the money for an operation. The one exception is the Savage bolt action rifle, which is cheap and easy to re-barrel.

That's a chance that we all take... The bore-scope though saves me the frustration of trying to get a damaged gun to "shoot good" that isn't going to, by trying one load after another in it, to no effect.

I have found that most of not all of the 'experts' who poo-pooh the idea of barrel break-in and proper cleaning have never actually seen the inside of a rifle barrel with a bore-scope. Lacking that, imagination must substitute for observation, and once again we run across an accuracy problem.

cool


Edited by charlesb (11/29/14 02:23 PM)
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