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How crucial is breaking in barrels?

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How crucial is breaking in barrels?

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Old 08-03-2019, 08:35 PM
  #1  
Typical Buck
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Default How crucial is breaking in barrels?

Despite having received both my MGM 327 and 460 Encore barrels a while ago, I haven't yet had many opportunities to shoot either of them. One thing that's been causing me to put them off has been the issue of breaking in the barrels. With the 460 barrel being one of my dream builds, one I plan on holding onto for a while, I especially want to make sure I do everything properly. MGM recommends a break-in procedure consisting of cleaning thoroughly between every shot for 15 rounds, then every 3-5 shots for every 50 rounds. That's going to be a bit time consuming.

What I've begun to wonder though is, is such a break in procedure necessary? The 460 isn't exactly a benchrest cartridge, and even on paper targets I'll probably only shoot it to 250, maybe 300 yards at most. I don't know, maybe I should just buckle up and get it done, even if it takes a while. What do you guys think?
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Old 08-04-2019, 06:56 AM
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IMO< it comes down to a bunch of things
ONE being the barrel, is it of standards or of match grade tolerances?
next is ammo being sent down the barrel
, hi vel loads, HI pressure loads or< run of the mill factory loads, of softer heads(bullet I mean here)
and then comes down to what the shooters gaols are for the gun itself, if your looking to absolute accuracy, or just happy with run of the mill accuracy!

SO< there are more variables in things than just should you or shouldnl;t you?
and then there are those that DON"T think it matters and some that think it does!

HIGH end barrel makers do more testing than most ALL normal shooters and hunters do , and the makers recommend it/SO>
you can always lap bores to help in break in, over just shooting too!
this again comes down to what one believes in or not maybe too!

On all my custom rifles built to be super accurate I break barrels in a s the barrel maker suggests, too much time and money to take chances, and I don't mind doing so!

NOW on a Hand gun, this might seem silly, but I don't think this is as big a deal, unless your talking a very very long barrel and super fast rifle caliber being used in it.

larger bore pistol calibers make more energy than speed, and its typically the speed that scares barrels or effects erosion them faster, but it can happen at fast or slow speeds I would think, so might be wrong of me to think this way.
I however do think this way, due to the fact I have shot over a 100,000 rounds out of a few pistols and have seen how slow the wear is on pistol rifles over rifle barrels (I have shot off the barrels on Full autos before(done on purpose to see how many rounds it would take to do so)
so, I Just feel that it isn;t as critical in a pistol as a rifle, but then again, MOST folks are happy with rather poor grouping pistols, and what your looking to do is different than what most are happy with !
SO< as they say, better safe than sorry right? LOL
suck it up and clean bore as suggested to and get it done and post some results, seems like a great built gun to me and should show so on paper if you do your part!
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Old 08-07-2019, 04:55 PM
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No break in procedure will add 500 more rounds of barrel life. No break in procedure will shrink 1/2moa groups to 1/10moa groups. Breaking in can help reduce fouling, and improve ease of cleaning. That's really all we're talking about.

In general, barrel break in should have purpose.

For me, the idea of a barrel break in procedure is to 1) fire lap the grain structure at the surface of the bore, then 2) impregnate copper into the remaining pores of the bore. To accomplish this, I clean with a copper solvent after every round for the first 20-25 rounds, then only with a powder solvent until 50-100rnds, starting at every 5, ending every 10. From then on, I only clean the bore with a powder solvent, and never use a copper solvent until groups start to open up.

After that, generally I can clean once every 400-500rnds, which entails 2 passes with a nylon brush, and about 3 cycles of one pass with a wet patch followed by 3 passes with a dry patch - then the patches come out clean.

For a 460 S&W, if I'm honest, I wouldn't bother, I'd simply shoot and be merry.
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Old 08-08-2019, 08:00 AM
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I'm 100% with Nomercy on barrel break in. I do the same thing he does and for the same reasons.
Breaking in a barrel will not make it magically more accurate. What it does is removes the minor imperfections from the machining/rifling process thereby having less areas for fouling to catch and hold on to and much easier to keep clean. Not doing a break in, especially on a rough barrel, is the reason rifles that have been shot a lot begin to loose accuracy. This is usually due to a build up of lead or copper fouling.
Even if I purchase a used rifle the first thing I do before I even shoot it is give it a good cleaning with a copper solvent then lap the bore a minimum of 100 times with J-B compound if necessary, followed by another cleaning. I can usually tell if the barrel was broken in during the initial copper solvent cleaning because there won't be much "blue" on the patch.
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Old 08-09-2019, 06:50 AM
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...Deleted by CalHunter...

Last edited by CalHunter; 08-10-2019 at 07:31 AM. Reason: More advertising
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Old 08-09-2019, 01:07 PM
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I sent an email to Begara about this because I ordered a B-14HMR. Unfortunately I deleted the email but what they said is that they hone all their barrels and a break in is not necessary. But if I should decide to they said clean the bore every shot for the first 15-20 shots then every 5-10 shots for the next 150 shots.
That is what I normally do anyway for a new rifle.
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Old 08-10-2019, 07:01 AM
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When i get a new Rifle, or a used but New to me. My method is to COMPLETELY Clean the Barrel down to Bare Steel, I use a Good quality Copper Remover, 2 of my VERY favorites are Pro Shot iv, and Boretech Eliminator. I have used About everything out there at one time or another, the Harsher stuff like Barnes CR10, and Hoppes Sweets do a fine job, But they do NOT do any better than the 2 i just mentioned, and the 2 i mention actually smell pleasant, instead of Take your Breath away! Check the Reviews on both products i just mentioned, They Work STELLAR! http://www.proshotproducts.com/Coppe...-oz_p_611.html
https://www.boretech.com/products/el...r-bore-cleaner

Once i get the Barrel THOROUGHLY Clean i start shooting it for Groups, I keep from over heating the Gun, Just stick to 3-5 Shot groups, with 3-5 Minutes rest period between shots. With my Handloads i am usually able to find a Good Shooting Load fairly quick. I like to clean like the Above mentioned about every 40-50 Rounds, BUT i let the Rifle tell me. For example, my .308 will NOT Shoot at it’s best on a FULLY DEEP Clean, i have to get 10-12 Rounds through it before it Settles in. So this particular rifle I don’t Like to Clean, I would say about every 100 Rounds i Take it ALL the way Back down to Bare Steel Clean, Then go out and Get my 12 Shots through it.

Many years ago i had a New Custom Rifle Built by an outfit called Arnold Arms, with my New Rifle came a “Break in” Sheet. They wanted me to fire 10 Shots, and THROUGHLY Clean after each individual shot, Once i got through the 10 Shots i could move to 3 Shot Groups, after 3 Shots they wanted me to COMPLETELY Strip clean, this went on for 10 or so 3 Shot Groups, then i could move to 5 Shot Groups, In the end they Wanted me to COMPLETELY STRIP Down clean after 10 Shots, and NEVER shoot more than 20 Shots without DEEP Cleaning.

I followed the above procedure to the T, i had about 2,500 bucks in that Rifle so I decided to listen to them. YES the Rifle Shot VERY GOOD, BUT truth is i have had MANY MANY factory Rifles over the years that have Shot EVERY bit as good, Some even Better, and i did NOTHING like the Procedure Arnold Arms asked of me. I cleaned like I mentioned above, and Started shooting them!

On average, I thoroughly clean my Rifles after 2, maybe 3 Boxes of Shells, 40-60 Rounds

Last edited by Idaholewis; 08-10-2019 at 07:08 AM.
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Old 08-22-2019, 04:27 PM
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Originally Posted by bronko22000 View Post
I sent an email to Begara about this because I ordered a B-14HMR. Unfortunately I deleted the email but what they said is that they hone all their barrels and a break in is not necessary. But if I should decide to they said clean the bore every shot for the first 15-20 shots then every 5-10 shots for the next 150 shots.
That is what I normally do anyway for a new rifle.
Custom barrel makers offer hand-lapped barrels, and still recognize a break in process will help appropriately coke the bore with copper. Bergara wouldnt be my first source.

I didnt break in my current Bartlein on my match rifle. I have about 700 rounds on it right now. I cleaned every round for 10 rounds on the first day with it, did load development with 25 rounds on the 2nd day, confirmed zero with 5 rounds, and shot a match on the third day. I cleaned it today for a match tomorrow, which took 5 strokes with a brush, 2 oil patch strokes, and a dozen dry patch strokes to come out clean. I dont push out copper, only use a carbon solvent. Only the second time it has been cleaned ever, and its been 400 rounds since last cleaning. Installed a new scope for a night match this morning, took 5, rounds to zero at 100. Fouled 10 more rounds on 2 other targets, and chronographed 10 rounds. In total, I shot 4 groups, all under 1/2.

What would have it done if I had done a more extensive break-in?
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Old 08-22-2019, 05:55 PM
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Nomercy - I didn't mention it and I deleted the email I received from them. But they did say that they hone their barrels but gave me the break in process to use should I desire to do so.
I figure I may as well. I've done it several times before and it always seemed to benefit me. The ones that I've bought new that I did a barrel break in on are the easiest rifles I own to clean.
Normally no more than 6 - 10 patches to come out as white as they went in.
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Old 08-23-2019, 12:40 PM
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My break-in procedure is to clean barrel real good before shooting it.
Doesn't matter if its new or just new to me.
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