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Ar-15 Barrels

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Old Glory, Dec 1, 2008.

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  1. Old Glory

    Old Glory Member

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    Have been a Hand gunner for a while. Looking to put together my first AR-15.

    What type of barrel do you recommend and what twist? Seem like 1-9 is standard. Some recommend 1-12 or 1-13. Will use the rifle for target shooting/plinking. No formal matches but my buddies and I are pretty competitive.

    Thanks!
     
  2. nbkky71

    nbkky71 Member

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    Personally, I'd go with the 1-7 twist rate as it gives you the most flexibility on bullet weights.

    I've had good luck with Wilson heavy barrels. They're relatively inexpensive and shoot well. My competition AR15 is on it's third one.
     
  3. lencac

    lencac Member

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    You might consider a barrel from Noveske. That is if you can get just a barrel now. With over 800 new orders for complete rifles in the last few weeks he may be a bit strapped.
    Definitely a 1/7 twist as it allows the use of heavy projectiles for accuracy sake.
     
  4. Swampy

    Swampy Member

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    OG,

    If you never plan to shoot past 300 yards I'd say the standard 1-9" twist will do you fine. That will let you shoot any bullet up to 69 grains with no stability problems. The 69 grain bullets will handle most wind out to about 300 before they get pushed around too badly. Some 1-9 tubes will shoot 75 grainers well.... some won't.

    If you plan at some point to do a lot of shooting beyond 300 yards, then wind will start playing a major factor and you are going to want to shoot heavier, higher BC bullets. In that case you definitely will need a 1-8" or better to stabilize the 75 to 80 grain, high BC bullets.

    Best regards,
    Swampy

    Garands forever
     
  5. mljdeckard

    mljdeckard Member

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    Ok, how about this one?

    I'm trying to put together/buy a varmint/predator upper, not particularly wanting to do it twice. Looking at the Bushmaster site, I see the predator upper with a 1/8 barrel, and the varminter with a 1/9 barrel. I think I would prefer the shorter predator barrel, but I don't know about using 1/8 for 55 or 62 grain bullets. Will they work well too?
     
  6. Swampy

    Swampy Member

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    They should be fine.

    Best,
    Swampy

    Garands forever
     
  7. Crunker1337

    Crunker1337 Member

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    How exactly does the twist rate of a barrel affect stability and accuracy for bullets of different weights and velocities? When would a 1:13 twist rate barrel be useful? I've never heard of anyone actually using one.
     
  8. Guns and more

    Guns and more member

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    The 1:7 twist was a military spec. Many believe it had to do with bullet weight. Actually, the military wanted to use the 1:7 because of the longer tracer rounds were more stable. Colt still has the 1:7, most others have gone to the 1:9.
     
  9. Swampy

    Swampy Member

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    Crunker,

    Twist and stability are related to the length of the bullet vs. caliber. In .22 caliber at the velocities common to the .223 cartridge, a 13" twist is good for the smaller bullets in the 40 to 50 grain range.

    The 1-7 was overkill for the military. They probably would have been fine with a 1-8 or 1-9.

    The 1-8 and 1-7's are popular today with Highpower and Long Range target shooters who want-need to shoot the longer & heavier high BC bullets.

    Best,
    Swampy

    Garands forever
     
  10. agd1953

    agd1953 Member

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    mljdeckard, I have a bushmaster varminter and I love it. With my reloads I can put 3 shots at 100 yds and easily cover it with a dime. By the way I live in the holy city of Roy. Have a great day
     
  11. mljdeckard

    mljdeckard Member

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    I'm honestly thinking 1/9 should be perfect for most of my shooting. I'm going to use 55 gr Barnes varmint grenades pretty much exclusively. If I feel i need to try the heavier bullets later, I'll try them first in the 1/9 barrel, and if it isn't more accurate than I am, then I'll build another upper with a 1/7 or 1/8.
     
  12. P-32

    P-32 Member

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    Yeah, but the 7 will shoot those 55's just fine. I've shot 53 gr SMK's out of a 6 1/2 without problems and they shot well.
     
  13. cracked butt

    cracked butt Member

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    From my limited experience, I would skip the 1:9 barrel and get a 1:8 or 1:7.


    The 1:9 barrels, especially the chrome lined ones, seem to be cheaply mass produced. The Barrels with the tighter twists are probably made with a lot more care as they are likely to be used for competitive precision shooting (this doesn't necessarily apply to carbine barrels).
    I was not impressed with the way the 1:9 barrel that came on my Bushmaster Target rifle shot- I thought there was something wrong with me, my scope mounts, or my scope, until I switched to a better barrel. The rifle went from a 2moa to a sub 1/2moa rifle with a simple barrel change.

    The 1:9 also limits the length of bullets that it will stabilize, where the 1:8 or better barrels will give you a lot more bullet choices with no downside.
     
  14. mljdeckard

    mljdeckard Member

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    I might have to think hard about this and do some real life research.
     
  15. H2O MAN

    H2O MAN member

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    I went with a Noveske mid length with a 1:7 ROT.
     
  16. Seafarer12

    Seafarer12 Member

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    I would just stick with a 1-9 unless you are planning on shooting long range single loaded heavy bullets. Sure you can shoot a 90 grainer with a 1-7 but you will have to load them one at a time. A 1-9 will work for a 69 and up to a 75 on some guns. Unless you reload the main bullet weight would probably be in the 55 grain range.
     
  17. jaholder1971

    jaholder1971 Member

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    IMHO:

    80 percent of the AR's out there sport a 1:9 barrel and that means 80 percent of the AR's out there are incredibly handicapped.

    A 1:9 will reliably shoot a bullet up to 69 grains without keyholing. The way of AR's is with heavier bullets, not lighter. You're not seeing 30, 25 or 20 grain .224 bullets from Sierra, Hornady, Berger of JLK.

    Every AR I own gets either a 1:8 or 1:7 barrel.
     
  18. RP88

    RP88 Member

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    1:7 has great stability, plus it allows you to shoot whatever the hell you want through it without worrying about keyholing or ripping apart right after leaving the barrel.

    Kind of like wanting a 5.56 chamber even though you'll almost always be shooting .223. it's just nice to know you could do it if you want.
     
  19. CSestp

    CSestp Member

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    I'm in a similar boat as Old Glory. I'm looking to get a new barrel that is chrome lined (my mind is made up so lets not start the how much of a waist or how it affects accuracy debate here). Who makes a good quality chrome lined barrel with a 1:7 twist?
     
  20. innerpiece

    innerpiece Member

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    I just took a shot out at 250yds last weekend..
    with a DPMS Sportical.. 1/9 twist 16 inch barrel.
    Ive got a 30mm red dot mounted on it, now zeroed to group about 2 inches at 100yds.

    so I shot one off at a pile of dirt, as I said, bout 250... nailed it, couple inches to the right..

    could I tell if the bullet had "keyholed"? nope... but it was on target all things considerd..

    now I cant wait to put a 3x9 x 40mm scope on it and see what cam be done out past 300..

    its kinda funny, Ive read alot.. but then when I actually got to 'doing', I realized how much of what I read was underestimated, inaccurate, and misjudged.
    sometimes folks read things, and consider that "rule"... it happens alot.
    Im no pro on twist rate vrs bullet weight... but I know what happens when I do it.

    so better than reading opposing opinions, you should try it for yerself, then report with pics.. there is little argument left for "theory" at that point, in yer own mind... as you just did it...

    Im curious as to what other people will 'think' will work best in my rifles.... but Ill actually know, because Ill try them, and find one.

    ip.

    PS, I was using XM193....
     
  21. Beren

    Beren Moderator Emeritus

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    If it's a plinker, there's no need to go high-end, right? I'd look for a 16" lightweight profile barrel chambered for 5.56mm and a 1/9 or 1/7 twist. The "ideal" barrel for me to meet those specs is the one used on a Colt 6520, but that's spendy if you can find one.

    For plinking purposes, consider one of these for the price:

    http://model1sales.com/item-detail....ge=bar16lw.gif&CFID=44363882&CFTOKEN=71715687

    Again, I don't recommend them for anything more than a plinking barrel. I think you'll find most places are back ordered, anyway.

    You can also look at the EE on AR15.com, you'll often see barrels for sale there.
     
  22. popeyespappy

    popeyespappy Member

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    RP88
    I’m kind of partial to Rock River’s Wylde chamber. It is tighter than standard 223 for better accuracy but still able to handle 5.56 NATO pressures without worries.
     
  23. Old Glory

    Old Glory Member

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    Wow thanks for all the replies!

    I am in full panic buy mode:rolleyes: Really just an excuse to buy an AR15

    I ended up ordering a UBR from Fulton Armory. Spoke to Clint and he was very nice and very patient answering all my stupid questions. I am in MA and can't have a suppressor or threaded barrel. FA was able to put together a MA compliant rifle for me similar to this with A1 Stock (No collapsible stocks allowed in MA):

    UBR02-600.jpg


    Two stage Match Trigger
    Fixed Front Sight
    Criterion by Krieger Barrel 1x9 twist
    Slick Side Side Cock

    "The Look" Criterion by Krieger Barrel 1x9 twist
    From Fulton Armory: "The Fulton Armory "Post-Ban" barrel includes "The Look" muzzle device, which looks like a suppressor but is completely post-ban legal everywhere. Most importantly, "The Look" is pinned on just as the front sight base is pinned on. Why is this important? You can remove it, which is the only way to get the front sight base off, allowing the installation of float tubes as well as any needed maintenance." It is mostly cosmetic but will serve to protect the muzzle crown.
    MuzzleDeviceBW.jpg


    Slick Side Side Cock:
    The Side Cocking Option allows bolt cycling without breaking position and makes bolt charging effortless even with optics.
    556SideCockingCloseup-300.jpg

    Delivery is 6-10 weeks
     
  24. cracked butt

    cracked butt Member

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    XM193 has a 55 gr bullet which is well within the stabilization capabiliies of a 1:9 barrel. Try some77 or 80 gr bullets and report back if the 'rules' are correct or not;)
     
  25. innerpiece

    innerpiece Member

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    Gladly!
    more reasons for me to buy ammo and shoot my gun!

    Butt I think you missed the entire point of my post cracked butt...

    ip.
     
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