can I improve a pitted barrel?


B yond
October 24, 2006, 02:01 PM
I've got a Mosin-Nagant M44 with a pitted barrel. It's only pitted from about the center of the bore to about 4 inches from the muzzle. I haven't shot this one yet, but I have 2 questions.

1. Since it's not pitted at the muzzle, and the rifling appears to be in good condition, will the pitting affect accuracy?

2. Is there any good way I can repair the pitting or at least smooth it out a little myself? So far all I've done is run some JB bore paste through it, but I'm thinking about trying toothpaste to smooth it out a little.

I really don't want to rebarrel this rifle as I'd like to keep it stock, but I'd also like it to be as accurate as possible.

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October 24, 2006, 02:07 PM
Other than cleaning with JB, there's not much you can do to help it (in fact, I've found that pitted barrels shoot better when they're a little dirty).

Shoot it first and see what you get before you start to worry. Even moderate pitting usually won't make a huge difference.


October 24, 2006, 02:09 PM
When you clean it, use a carbon/powder fouling only cleaner like Hoppes or Ed's Red. That way, you will fill the pits in the bore with copper. This should aid in accuracy, somewhat.

October 24, 2006, 03:03 PM
Be sure to test the accuracy before you do anything as sometimes, old pitted bores shoot just fine. Yours may very well be one of these especially if the last of the barrel looks good.

Also, it seems that worn old bores often shoot best with heavy and long-for-caliber bullets. Be sure to try some of these before you do anything drastic.

Good luck-I hope it is a shooter anyway.

October 24, 2006, 08:37 PM
might as well shoot with lead bullets and it'll fill up the voids. same with copper jacketed ammo.

October 25, 2006, 10:04 AM
with a ring, actually a circumferential pit, about 8" back from the muzzle. Drives tacks. There's just no telling about pitted bores.

October 25, 2006, 10:12 AM
Many,many old milsurps shoot just fine, even with consdierable pitting. If the muzzle is good (a big if with milsurps---many show alot of cleaning rod wear) and throat is reasonable, it'll probably shoot just fine. I wouldn't even bother worrying about it.

October 25, 2006, 08:28 PM
I CAN'T find the bookmark

BUT a company has come out with a ceramic suspension that you apply to the cleanest bore you can achieve and fire enough ammo thru it to heat it up and apply more while it is hot. The cermic slowly fills in the pits. sounds like snake oil. A fellow on my C & R list is testing it. Price $50

I don't know how to tell you to google for it.


October 25, 2006, 09:10 PM
I would much appreciate it if you could try to get that web site. I have a mauser 98, 1912 rechambered in 1962 for .308 with a badly pitted barrel. It started shooting bad several years back and tried to clean all the copper out of it and start over. I played with it a little and now it sits there, calling my name for the past six months. That just might be the project its looking for.

B yond
October 26, 2006, 02:04 AM
Took it out to the range today and it shot just fine. That rifle is more accurate than I am.:D

After a day of shooting surplus Czech Silvetip I took a look down the bore and I couldn't even tell it was pitted. I guess the copper jackets must've filled in really well.

October 26, 2006, 07:47 AM

October 26, 2006, 03:31 PM
from a user

Joe, I really believe their stuff works. It worked in a Mosin which had a terrible barrel. It did not seem to work in the Garand, but that may be for two reasons. The first is that the Garand started with a very good barrel. The second is that at this time of my life, about 4" at 100 yards with eight rounds is about as good as I can do If I do three rounds, sometimes I can get really great groups, but not consistently enough to matter.

I'm thinking that the Garand began with the capability of getting better than 4" groups. Perhaps the Tallcoat stuff made it even better. But since the shooter is limited to that ability, I cannot prove it.

Perhaps after I get cornea replacements, the Garand can show its stuff. Of course, that means the insurance company agreeing to pay, and you know how that goes.


October 26, 2006, 11:09 PM
Lynn, thanks for that link. I haven't had time to review it yet, maybe tommorrow. thanks vince

October 27, 2006, 10:40 AM
Shoot it first before doing anything.

I have a M1917 Enfield that my dad handed over to me. It's been in the family for 40 years or so. The one gunsmith that looked at it says the barrel looks like "a sewer pipe" and recommended we re-barrel. The barrel is pitted, no doubt. Here's the thing, this gun shoots 1" groups at 100 yds all day long with the Weaver K4 scope on it. If it ain't broke, don't fix it!

That said, it would be a waste of time to rebarrel your M44 when even the best ones were never known for their accuracy. Not to mention you can get arsenal refinished M'44's with good barrels for around $100. Shoot it, and if it doesn't perform like you want, I'd probably try to just get another one with a good bore.

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