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Re: Barrel break in [Re: J.R.] #7750987 02/20/20 02:32 AM
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You need to change your oil every 3,000 miles too or you will ruin your engine.


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Re: Barrel break in [Re: scottfromdallas] #7750994 02/20/20 02:40 AM
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Originally Posted by scottfromdallas

You need to change your oil every 3,000 miles too or you will ruin your engine.


Originally Posted by DStroud
I change my oil in a new vehicle every 3 miles for the first 50-60 miles and they run great. whistle


^^Probably the best analogy, on this subject, I have ever seen.


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Re: Barrel break in [Re: Korean Redneck] #7750997 02/20/20 02:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Korean Redneck
I assume it had more to do with microscopic machining marks in the rifling, which I just can NOT see how that can be deburred by a brass/nylon brush and chemicals.


Yes, and mere fouling takes care of that.


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Re: Barrel break in [Re: FiremanJG] #7751015 02/20/20 02:54 AM
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Originally Posted by FiremanJG
Originally Posted by scottfromdallas

You need to change your oil every 3,000 miles too or you will ruin your engine.


Originally Posted by DStroud
I change my oil in a new vehicle every 3 miles for the first 50-60 miles and they run great. whistle


^^Probably the best analogy, on this subject, I have ever seen.


My dad always told me when I bought a new car, I have to change my oil after the first 500 miles. Probably wise 40 years ago.


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Re: Barrel break in [Re: J.R.] #7751035 02/20/20 03:02 AM
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Trying to be open minded about it, but I haven't read anything from a metallurgy point of view on how the cleaning/break in process can change the barrel to make it better. If anything it would seem to be a negative, as it would remove the benefit of fouling, which does add material to voids.


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Re: Barrel break in [Re: J.R.] #7751048 02/20/20 03:15 AM
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It would appear there are two sides to this discussion - It is what it is and there's no use trying to change it, and what I have can be made better if I put forth more time and effort. I would just add that while there's no question today's factory barrels are the best ever, we're still far from the point where anyone can honestly say they're all pretty much the same.

Here's the link to a good article on what to expect from a new rifle barrel. It's up to the reader to take the information shared and decide if it somehow yields any evidence of the need to break in a new barrel.

"This is part of the frustrating fun of messing with rifles. You really don't know what you have going until you sit down at the bench. Even then you may not know until you've tried a bunch of loads, checked the bedding, switched scopes, perhaps recut the crown, and tried a half-dozen other tricks before you finally sigh with satisfaction--or walk away in disgust."

Link

Last edited by Texas Dan; 02/20/20 03:36 AM.

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Re: Barrel break in [Re: onlysmith&wesson] #7751120 02/20/20 04:36 AM
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Originally Posted by onlysmith&wesson
Trying to be open minded about it, but I haven't read anything from a metallurgy point of view on how the cleaning/break in process can change the barrel to make it better. If anything it would seem to be a negative, as it would remove the benefit of fouling, which does add material to voids.


I'll take a stab at this.

Again, for me it comes down to microscopic imperfections from tooling down to as small as you can imagine before going molecular. For example, while a straight blade is visually straight, the reality is that at this small level literally every knife is a saw with finer and finer teeth. The tooling marks from the rifling process invariably leave marks at that level too. Now you take a typical rifle brush, the bristles are literally designed NOT to scratch the surface of a barrel at this level. Meaning brass is the best compromise between a lower hardness, the metallurgic definition (or I call mechanical properties), to ensure it won't scratch even the softer stainless steel on this level but still has some scrubbing power. Although a bullet's jacket is copper and a lower hardness, you are talking about very high pressure and temperature. There is a a whole dang study within engineering dedicated solely to the mechanical properties of steel and it's behaviors on a molecular level. The short version is that high temp and pressure does extraordinary things. The real advantage of steel vs iron is primarily due to the addition of carbon, and other elements within any special recipe, into the existing iron molecules bonding together as they solidify. That's why how high it goes and how fast it cools down all effect hardness and strength, again I mean these in their technical metallurgical definitions. Now, I know if at high temp, you can embed smaller molecule within the iron molecules at a molecular level, then you can convince me that momentary burst of very high temperature can essentially embedd copper molecules in slightly larger voids. I imagine these tiny imperfections within the barrel inner wall and rifling to be a clear molecular boundary between it and the copper. I imagine these voids are random in shape and the copper molecule just gets lodged into it. (kinda like a ball in cube box that it fit perfectly, while it's flush against the box, it will never fill it). So subsequent firings, the copper may try to deposit itself into these voids but one is there already.

Just a theory, maybe more like a visualization, based on what my university called materials science.

Re: Barrel break in [Re: J.R.] #7751124 02/20/20 04:46 AM
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I think some favtory barrels can benefit from it, high end hand lapped barrels not so much

Re: Barrel break in [Re: J.R.] #7751154 02/20/20 06:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Phil Robertson
Don't let your ears hear what your eyes didn't see, and don't let your mouth say what your heart doesn't feel
Re: Barrel break in [Re: Korean Redneck] #7751260 02/20/20 01:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Korean Redneck
Originally Posted by onlysmith&wesson
Trying to be open minded about it, but I haven't read anything from a metallurgy point of view on how the cleaning/break in process can change the barrel to make it better. If anything it would seem to be a negative, as it would remove the benefit of fouling, which does add material to voids.


I'll take a stab at this.

Again, for me it comes down to microscopic imperfections from tooling down to as small as you can imagine before going molecular. For example, while a straight blade is visually straight, the reality is that at this small level literally every knife is a saw with finer and finer teeth. The tooling marks from the rifling process invariably leave marks at that level too. Now you take a typical rifle brush, the bristles are literally designed NOT to scratch the surface of a barrel at this level. Meaning brass is the best compromise between a lower hardness, the metallurgic definition (or I call mechanical properties), to ensure it won't scratch even the softer stainless steel on this level but still has some scrubbing power. Although a bullet's jacket is copper and a lower hardness, you are talking about very high pressure and temperature. There is a a whole dang study within engineering dedicated solely to the mechanical properties of steel and it's behaviors on a molecular level. The short version is that high temp and pressure does extraordinary things. The real advantage of steel vs iron is primarily due to the addition of carbon, and other elements within any special recipe, into the existing iron molecules bonding together as they solidify. That's why how high it goes and how fast it cools down all effect hardness and strength, again I mean these in their technical metallurgical definitions. Now, I know if at high temp, you can embed smaller molecule within the iron molecules at a molecular level, then you can convince me that momentary burst of very high temperature can essentially embedd copper molecules in slightly larger voids. I imagine these tiny imperfections within the barrel inner wall and rifling to be a clear molecular boundary between it and the copper. I imagine these voids are random in shape and the copper molecule just gets lodged into it. (kinda like a ball in cube box that it fit perfectly, while it's flush against the box, it will never fill it). So subsequent firings, the copper may try to deposit itself into these voids but one is there already.

Just a theory, maybe more like a visualization, based on what my university called materials science.


Good post.

At the end of the day, the decision probably boils down to the effort required for the path taken. It's far easier to leave a barrel fouled so that imperfections are filled until the fouling becomes so heavy that it impacts accuracy. Not sure but perhaps this happens when bullet speed becomes too inconsistent. Breaking in a barrel takes more time and effort but leaves a barrel in a more perfect state that leads to greater accuracy than can be achieved with fouling alone.

Your comments also point to why some have said that copper removal is one of those things were care must be taken to avoid creating a problem when there is none. It's the reason why I have stopped using strong copper removers when cleaning my rifles and now use more traditional solvents that claim to remove both powder residue and copper. Still, I'm sure there will come a time when like fouling, copper buildup can reach the point where a stronger solvent becomes necessary.

Last edited by Texas Dan; 02/20/20 01:54 PM.

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Re: Barrel break in [Re: J.R.] #7751314 02/20/20 02:13 PM
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I've had others who are even less experienced than I am engage in this conversation. Honestly, I usually change the topic to bore guides and cleaning practices. These days, actually about a week ago in the office, I tell people that you might as well break in your barrel lightly but make sure you get a real one piece rod and bore guide because I think more people mess up barrels from improper cleaning than any last affects breaking in while or will not do. It will give some practice on how to clean the barrel properly.

Re: Barrel break in [Re: Korean Redneck] #7751364 02/20/20 02:53 PM
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Fortunately I have had the benefit of observing the affects of cleaning and fouling for literally hundreds of rifles, mine and customers. Some things I have seen.

1. More trouble has been experienced with people showing up with spotless barrels, than fouled ones. In the event a customer arrives with a spotless barrel, we will have to foul it in before it tightens up on 100 yard paper. A 3" shooting rifle becomes a sub 1" shooting rifle after an X number of rounds. Never have we stopped mid-day to reclean.

2. You have to learn your round counts on both ends of the cleaning spectrum. You have to learn how many foulers this barrel needs to start to behave itself, and it is repeatable. On the other end, you have to know how many rounds can it take before it needs to be cleaned again. This applies to cut rifled as well as button rifled.

3. Cut rifled barrels typically require less foulers to begin tightening up. I have observed 3 to 9 rounds, very often. Cut rifled barrels typically tolerate a longer round count before requiring cleaning again. My own cut rifled barrels have gone as far as 600 rounds between cleanings. There have been times 600 rounds happended in a week, or happened in a year. It comes down to round count far more than time. Often the opposite is true on both ends for button rifled barrels. They tend to require more foulers to begin to shoot tight. I have seen as many as 20 rounds, with cooling between 3 to 5 shot volleys. And they tend to not tolerate as high of a round count before needing cleaning than do cut rifled. I have one button rifled bolt action left. It cannot tolerate over 50 rounds before it starts shooting poorly. So, I time cleaning and fouling with each 50 round box of ammo I am taking ammo from.

4. Cartridge powder charge increse, often narrows the front and the back end numbers. For example, my 7 Rem Mag is the highest powder charge ammo in my personal collection. 70.2 gr of H-Retumbo is much larger than 24.0 gr in a .223 Ackley Improved. The 7 Rem Mag is a cut rifled barrel made by Rock Creek, and only requires 3 foulers after cleaning, however it will need cleaning again at 100 rounds. It never shoots (what I would call in the broad spectrum of rifles) "poorly" but it shoots worse than it is capable of when it is too fouled.

5. You have to learn your rifle (back to what is it capable of?). And to learn it, you either need to remember or document your round count findings. You also must shoot that rifle a great amount to really learn it. And preferably in all of the temperature swings most of Texas sees. At my range, I have observed, in 6 monts time, a low of 7° and a high of 107°. What does that do to ammo pressure, what does that do to bullet flight, what does that do to a zero that may or may not shift, what does that do to cleaning and fouling procedures?


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Re: Barrel break in [Re: J.R.] #7751399 02/20/20 03:19 PM
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Here is a great quote from a self proclaimed rifle looney, and long time outdoor writer J Barsness, plagiarized from another forum, on the subject of barrel break in......


"I Will also note that I have talked to more than one gunsmith and barrel-maker who made up some sort of break-in technique just to give to customers who insisted that they wanted to break in their barrel "properly." The smiths and barrel makers grew weary of telling such customers that they could just go shoot their rifle, finding it a lot easier to provide a break-in routine. They got more work done, and the customers convinced that break-in was absolutely necessary could waste their time instead."

Re: Barrel break in [Re: J.R.] #7751460 02/20/20 04:19 PM
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For those interested in knowing what three of the top barrel makers have to say on the subject (video).

Link


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Re: Barrel break in [Re: J.R.] #7751614 02/20/20 06:18 PM
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different folks , different strokes . Some guy like fat women , some like thin women. Personally I dont see anything wrong with barrel breaking in . I also like fat and thin women. haha


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Re: Barrel break in [Re: Tin Head] #7751636 02/20/20 06:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Tin Head
different folks , different strokes . Some guy like fat women , some like thin women. Personally I dont see anything wrong with barrel breaking in . I also like fat and thin women. haha


But unlike what a guy once tried to tell me, I CAN tell the difference once the lights go out.

Last edited by Texas Dan; 02/20/20 06:40 PM.

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Re: Barrel break in [Re: Tin Head] #7751647 02/20/20 06:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Tin Head
different folks , different strokes . Some guy like fat women , some like thin women. Personally I dont see anything wrong with barrel breaking in . I also like fat and thin women. haha

I guess until my wife gets fat ill just live with loving my skinny woman and not breaking in rifles and be happy.


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Re: Barrel break in [Re: J.R.] #7751671 02/20/20 07:15 PM
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In the end, it's probably the ones who enjoy shooting and cleaning their rifles who are most likely to follow a break-in process. The ones who fire a few shots between seasons "just to check their zero", not so much.

Whatever the route taken, it's hard to buy a new rifle today that doesn't shoot well enough to kill a deer.


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Re: Barrel break in [Re: J.R.] #7751695 02/20/20 07:43 PM
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A lot of people on this forum shoot frequently and only clean when accuracy suffers. It’s not just bubba that checks zero before deer season.


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Re: Barrel break in [Re: scottfromdallas] #7751771 02/20/20 09:05 PM
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Originally Posted by scottfromdallas
A lot of people on this forum shoot frequently and only clean when accuracy suffers. It’s not just bubba that checks zero before deer season.


Point well taken.

The topic could also be one where people take a mixture of findings to arrive at their own conclusion. Based on all that I've seen and read on the subject, custom barrels, meaning any barrel that has seen professional work beyond what you would find with a factory-made barrel, are far less likely to require break-in. After all, isn't increased accuracy the primary reason why someone orders a custom barrel? There are also those who like to tout how firearm manufacturers are now producing factory barrels with exceptional quality and performance. While this may be true, my gut is the space between a custom barrel and a factory barrel still has plenty of room for improvement of factory barrel performance. If it were not so, custom barrel makers would be out of business. So then, it only makes sense that some would run with the belief that factory barrels are now so good that they too cannot see any improvement by going through a break-in process. That in itself equates to saying today's factory barrel is just as accurate as a custom barrel, which is sure to bring additional debate. Combine this with the opinions shown in the video by three leading custom barrel makers and the answer seems obvious. ,

So yes, it would appear that leaving a barrel fouled until accuracy drops off is yet another approach at overcoming the shortcomings of factory barrels. However, the evidence clearly shows a barrel need not be left dirty for the rifle owner to achieve an even greater level of accuracy and performance.

Last edited by Texas Dan; 02/20/20 09:20 PM.

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Re: Barrel break in [Re: J.R.] #7751791 02/20/20 09:25 PM
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Trash Can Dan is out in left field yet again.

Re: Barrel break in [Re: J.R.] #7751798 02/20/20 09:32 PM
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Both trains of thought produced similar/the same results with the same components, that leads me to believe the success is driven by what both are doing and not what they are doing differently. The break in does not occur from cleaning between shots, it comes front shooting and that is why both trains of thought prevail, they are both doing it and both claiming their way is correct. In the end it appears both work, but I don't "enjoy" cleaning a rifle so ill just shoot mine and arrive at the same end.


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Re: Barrel break in [Re: redchevy] #7751821 02/20/20 09:47 PM
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Originally Posted by redchevy
Both trains of thought produced similar/the same results with the same components, that leads me to believe the success is driven by what both are doing and not what they are doing differently. The break in does not occur from cleaning between shots, it comes front shooting and that is why both trains of thought prevail, they are both doing it and both claiming their way is correct. In the end it appears both work, but I don't "enjoy" cleaning a rifle so ill just shoot mine and arrive at the same end.


Amen.

Re: Barrel break in [Re: FiremanJG] #7753106 02/22/20 01:52 AM
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Originally Posted by FiremanJG
Dan, have you ever shot out a rifle barrel? popcorn


02/19/20 12:35 PM

Still no answer, but I knew the answer before I asked the question.


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Re: Barrel break in [Re: J.R.] #7753117 02/22/20 02:03 AM
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I used to "break barrels in"...but then, I "used" to do a lot of things when I was younger that didn't stand the test of time.

As has been stated, if a barrel is gonna shoot...it's gonna shoot.

And it's a pet theory of mine these years that more barrels have been ruined by pedestrian cleaning techniques than were EVER shot out...

Before anyone asks, YES...I killed the bore on a stellar .223 years ago. Beat it to death with solvent and a rod.

Them's the cards I'm holdin', anyway.

Mark


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