I finally was able to clean my "new" rifle today. I admit it was made in 1946 and has seen some use and abuse. More to the abuse side of things i guess. I got it a month ago and it was dirty.
Any, after 2 passes with a bore brush, and some time with patches, and patched brush, i got the barrel nice and shiney.
-the muzzle crown is PERFECT, not even a scratch to the blueing.
-the final 3 inches of the barrel is immaculate
-the barrel has spots of pitting in the grooves. They are not huge, but once clean the naked eye can see them fine with a flashlight shining into the open breech.
I know that the pits SHOULD affect acuracy, but how much?
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November 6, 2007, 11:32 PM
It's somewhat counterintuitive, but pitting is not necessarily bad for accuracy.
I've seen a number of rifles that shot great groups with a mildly pitted bore.
I knew one Match shooter who's bore was pitted and he continued winning matches with it until he retired.
Shoot it and see what it'll do, you might be surprised.
November 6, 2007, 11:43 PM
I had a rifle with a pretty bad bore once, bought at a yard sale so dirty you could not see down the bore. It would shoot a fairly good group for several rounds then became terrible. No way MOA but good enough to hunt with for several shots. So see how it does clean and dirty.
November 6, 2007, 11:59 PM
I have a few guns with pitted bores. Most shoot just fine.
An M38 Russian with a worn pitted bore, plus counter-bored at the muzzle shoots just about as good as a post-war M44 I have with a mint bore. Maybe counter-boring ain't so bad. The M38 bore looks pretty bad! Performs pretty decent.
A Rock Island 1903 rifle has some healthy pitting that don't seem to effect it at all. Shoots great.
A P08 German Luger that has a horrid looking bore is actually one of my best shooting pistols.
Otther guns in my collection too with less than perfect bores shoot just fine.
Then you have my M48 Yugo Mauser. Bore is bad, rifling fades towards the muzzle. Fails the "bullet test", swallows an 8mm bullet to the brass neck and then some! Shoots terrible, keyholes bullets sometimes, patterns shots instead of grouping them. It's got a beautiful action though, so someday I'll use it for something.
I suppose a common denominator in the guns with so-so bores that shoot good would be the fact that the rifling makes it to the muzzle, and the crowns are OK. The M48 Yugo barrel's rifling justs fades away at the muzzle. While the crown is ok, the bore is way big at the muzzle. It's a piece of junk good only for parts!
The Luger barrel is worn and pitted, rifling at the crown ain't that good, but for some reason still shoots great, an anomaly I suppose? Shoots as good or better than a Mauser made P08 Luger with a mint bore I own.
A few pits in the barrel don't scare me too much. But by all means clean the grease out of milsurp barrel before you buy it if possible. Might prevent you from getting a turkey like my M48!
November 7, 2007, 12:12 AM
mild pitting is not a big problem at all. The pits may, and i stress may cause the bullets to fly differently than they would with if the gun were new, however, the pits will effect the bullets fired in the same way each time, therefore you can sight the rifle in with the pitted barrel. Long story short, make sure to keep it clean or the pitting will cause a "wandering zero". You may also suffer long distance accuracy problems...but who knows.
November 7, 2007, 12:14 AM
A good barrel with some pitting not at the muzzle will usually shoot with very good accuracy.
A bad barrel (even if it "looks" good) will shoot with poor accuracy from day one.
The key is the muzzle. If its badly pitted at the muzzle, accuracy will be affected.