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Free Floating a long barrel

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by DMK, Jan 22, 2004.

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  1. DMK

    DMK Member

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    I've been a little dissapointed with the accuracy of my 1970 M39 Mosin-Nagant. It's good, but not as consistant as my Sk.Y. or B Barrel.

    One thing I noticed is the barrel is free floated all the way up to the muzzle, but right there at the end, both the top and lower handguards clamp very tightly all the way around. I understand how a little upward pressure is sometimes desirable on long barrels such as the M/39's, but I'm thinking that the muzzle should not be held so tightly as that.

    My B Barrel has a completely free floated barrel and on the Sk.Y, the barrel only touches at the bottom, right at the end of the lower handguard.

    Do you guys have any thoughts on this?
     
  2. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

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    The tight clamp leads to the stock putting ever more force on the barrel as the barrel length changes slightly with heating as you shoot. If it wuz me, I'd loosen it a bit.

    Back when the Lord and I were a lot younger, my uncle told me to free float the forearm, but less at the tip than in the rest of the channel. Then, shim the tip with wax paper. About a five-pound pull to separate the barrel and stock enough to insert the thin shim. It definitely worked. Groups tightened considerably.

    I'd assume the same sort of deal with a full military stock...

    :), Art
     
  3. DMK

    DMK Member

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    Well, it's tight even without the end clamp, but perhaps you may be onto something there. If the clamp was overtightened for a length of time, it may have compressed the wood. I'm considering relieving the wood all the way around. I normally keep the clamps on these types of rifles just snug enough to contact the wood, then use locktite to keep the screws from backing out.

    That's what I was thinking also (probably got the idea from you). Thinking out loud, if I relieve the wood at the end to free float it, I can try it with and without a little up pressure at the end. I'll just bring a piece of wax paper with me to the range and see which way groups better.

    Thanks for the help!
     
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