Re-barreling an A-Bolt?


March 1, 2013, 02:55 PM
I bought my first Browning last year an A-bolt II synthetic and getting it to shoot right has given me fits, best I can do is 1.25" average with handloads (by far the worst of my rifles) and all factory fodder loads look like a shotgun pattern, yes I know that is very rare for a Browning. Normally my first instinct would be to sell it and buy something else but I really like the feel of the rifle and the flipdown magazine is my favorite, so rather then continuing to drive myself crazy on the reloading bench and the shooting rest I wanted to look at the possibility of re-barreling the rifle possibly to a different caliber (7mm-08AI, 284win, or 6.5 Creedmore), I know Browning does not have the aftermarket of my Savages but they do have one I am pretty sure. How much should it cost to re-barrel/re-chamber a Browning and are there any really good barrels on the aftermarket anywhere?
I know Browning makes a long range hunter A-Bolt, is there any other reason why I could not make this rifle into a real shooter?
BTW I know about the lok-tight on the barrel threads, it is a pain from what I understand but some gunsmiths can do it I think. Why on earth do they do that anyway?

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March 1, 2013, 10:35 PM
E. R. Shaw will probably fit a new barrel to your A-Bolt but I don't kow of anyone who supplies a pre-threaded barrel. I recently rebarreled an X-Bolt for the same reason, just would not shoot up to expectations. I was surprised to find that the barrel was 32 tpi. Rifle barrels normally run from 12 to 20 tpi. Don't think that has anything to do with the accuracy, just an observation. BTW, Browning is very liberal with the LocTite.

March 1, 2013, 10:37 PM
ER Shaw won't thread them? I thought they did, and you just had to have a gunsmith fit it? What brand barrel did you get on the X-Bolt and did it help? This A-Bolt has been a letdown I had such high hopes for it.

March 2, 2013, 11:31 PM
I know that Shaw will fit a barrel to an A-Bolt, had not checked to see if they sold threaded barrels. I always buy blanks and thread and chamber myself.
I used a Shilen barrel on the X-Bolt I mentioned. After break-in, it is shooting less than an inch consistently.

March 5, 2013, 12:53 PM
I'm not sure, but I think Browning uses the red loctite on their barrels and they have to be heated up quite a bit to get them free. I know of a couple that the receiver threads came out with the barrel.

March 5, 2013, 03:26 PM
IMHO the rifle can be made to shoot without the expense of a rebarrel,rechamber thing.
Bedding IS the BIG issue, once again IMHO.
Glass bedding/Free floating perhaps?
You didn't state the caliber BUT in reality, 1.25" groups aint REALLY that bad in a Big Game rifle.

March 5, 2013, 05:29 PM
Zeke, Brownings are already floated and bedded to some extent. Kachok, if it makes you feel any better. I had an Abolt several years ago in 7mm08 that I could not get it to MOA not matter what I did. Played with it for 2 years rebedded it, new crown, then different stock and finally traded it. Loved the gun though.

March 19, 2013, 10:13 PM
I also have a Browning A Bolt II with a Boss that is...stubborn.

The first shot is always right where I want it. The rest are off quite a bit.

I'm going to give it another year of love...if it doesn't improve it's going to be my short range zombie rifle.

Old Dog Man
April 1, 2013, 12:42 PM
I suggest making a chamber cast with cerrosafe. I had a customer that had the same problem. After making a chamber cast, I could see the rifling just ahead the free-bore was not correct some of the rifling did not come back as far as the others. This was causing the bullet to start in the barrel crooked and effecting accuracy. I could see it with my bore scope also. I instaalled a new barrel, because his waerranty had expired. I was a tack driver afterwards. Yours maybe the same. Al

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