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Heavy Barrel

Old 01-22-2008, 07:49 AM
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Default Heavy Barrel

I recently order a NF .204 heavy barrel rifle from one of our local gun shops. What is the purpose of a heavy barrel. Sorry if this is a stupid question, but this is my first rifle.
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Old 01-22-2008, 07:58 AM
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Default RE: Heavy Barrel

They are generally supposed to be more accurate. I believe they also dissipate heat faster, but I dont think with a single shot it would get to hot.
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Old 01-22-2008, 08:21 AM
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Default RE: Heavy Barrel

They are also more stable.
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Old 01-22-2008, 08:50 AM
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Default RE: Heavy Barrel

The main reason for a heavy barrel is the reduction of barrel harmonics. Heavy barrels in general can be more accurate, and should be more accurate. But a thin barrel can be just as accurate if made, and reloaded for properly.

I do not know if a heavy barrel will displaceheat any better. Butit does take more shots to heat the barrel up. Andheat will affect the harmonics of a thin barrel faster than they will affect a heavy barrel. Tom.
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Old 01-22-2008, 10:10 AM
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Default RE: Heavy Barrel

Thanks, very helpful.
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Old 01-22-2008, 09:51 PM
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Default RE: Heavy Barrel

I'm a fourth gunsmith and I can tell you that the other responses are partially true.
Heavy barrels do help with the harmonics but it doesn't dampen them, it is more rigid so there is less harmonics. The heavy barrel also DOES NOT dissapate heat, it does the opposite. DO NOT fire a bunch of shots back to back out of a heavy barrel unless you want to loose accuracy and wind up replacing the barrel in a couple of years, it will distort the barrel, not to mention that it heats up the riflings which makes them softer and they burn out (become smooth) more easily. With a heavy barrel you should allow atleast 3 minutes between shots to allow the barrel to cool a few degrees and you don't ruin a good barrel. The weight of the barrel also helps you steady the rifle for more precise shots. If you want to improve your accuracy with this rifle there are two other things you can do. I suggest taking it to a gunsmith for these things:
#1. Glass bedding
#2. Recessed crowning (that is on the end of the barrel - if it has a scooped out look on the end)
#3. Reloaded ammunition - ask for accuracy loads or efficientcy loads, both are good an 3 times more accurate than factory ammunition.
Hope that helps.
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Old 01-23-2008, 09:28 AM
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Default RE: Heavy Barrel

Thanks fellas! I'll post some pics when it comes in.
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Old 01-23-2008, 12:24 PM
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Default RE: Heavy Barrel


ORIGINAL: HEAD0001

The main reason for a heavy barrel is the reduction of barrel harmonics. Heavy barrels in general can be more accurate, and should be more accurate. But a thin barrel can be just as accurate if made, and reloaded for properly.

I do not know if a heavy barrel will displace heat any better. But it does take more shots to heat the barrel up. And heat will affect the harmonics of a thin barrel faster than they will affect a heavy barrel. Tom.

With more surface area around the heavy barrel it is able to dissipate the heat faster. Fluted barrels are even more efficient at dissipating heat
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Old 01-23-2008, 05:26 PM
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Default RE: Heavy Barrel

Hey, the only reason that you have more surface area out side doen't mean that the heat is immediately dissapated. Because the barrel is thicker there is more metal to absorb more heat, and technically (check your physics - or atleast make a competent statement based on more than just what one book says, try talking to an expert that uses Bull barrels on a daily basis for shooting and has competed with a firearm with a bull barrel) the heat is dissapated at the same rate as the heat has to travel outward (it expands and anyone who argues with that is not worth talking too). As heat passes through the barrel the barrel expands - right? I have studied this a believe me that as far as bullets are concerned there are some pretty tight tollerances on diameter - right? When metal gets hot it expands - right? Then it is conclusive (as well as proven fact) that the bore of the rifle swells as well, and as it swells (because the out side of the barrel is going to be a few degrees cooler than the bore) it makes it tighter for the bullet to travel down the bore of the barrel (thus more friction) which causes more heat to need to be dissapated and the process continues on and on .... If the process is not stopped and time allowed for the barrel to cool - eventually you will burn out your riflings (which with out those you HAVE NO ACCURACY at a range beyond 25 yards) and think hard and actually do you homework on it -if metal gets hot enough, does it not become softer? Softer metal means that there is oportunity for warping (try an experiment on one if you don't believe me - heat it up with as many shots as possible and keep on shooting and see what happens). As for harmonics, they are not totally gone on a bull barrel but I can promise you that a regular barrel (standard hunting barrel) can't even come close to a bull barrel at bench rest shooting. You will notice a HUGE difference in the shot groups. Just float the barrel the thickness of a dollar bill to within 2 inches of the action and then you won't have to worry about harmonics on a bull barrel (it allows the harmonic to pass without effecting your shot) as well as it allows the wood stock to warp and shrink depending on humidity levels. Don't panic its so little that you can't hardly notice it, but it does effect your accuracy. These points can be argued all day long because of some ancient misconceptions born out of ignorance. It all boils down to - if you are the owner of a rifle with a bull barrel, do your homework on it or your new rifle will dissapoint you very quickly. Some guys advice is very liberal, some very conservative, I try to lean down the middle but mostly I lean towards error on the side of caution (the bull barrels are faily expensive). All I'm getting at is would you rather take your chances that I'm wrong and fire shot after shot without cool down time and possibly ruin your accuracy because the barrel gets destroyed and has to be replaced (depending on the rifle some barrels can run about $300). Or would you rather error on the side of caution and try to preserve your accuracy and barrel. I suggest that if you intend on shooting a lot of rounds back to back very quickly, that you go with a cheap barrel so that you can continueto replace it on a regular basis. If anyone still doesn't believe me, go buy a bull barrel, shoot lots of rounds very quickly, and do it for a couple of days a week. Be sure to use paper targets to keep track of your accuracy. Then come back in a couple of months and tell me what happened. I've had it happen to me twice before I researched and figured out what happened.
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Old 01-23-2008, 05:29 PM
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Default RE: Heavy Barrel

By the way, anyone who thinks that they could outshoot me (your thin barrel with "proper" reloading against me and my bull barrel with my reloads) bring it on and you will go home eating crow and crying like a baby. I have won many competitions with my rifle and I take care of it just like I mentioned last night.
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