Featured How long does it usually take a barrel to break in

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by revturbo9967, Jul 7, 2017.

  1. revturbo9967

    revturbo9967 Well-Known Member

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    Just like the title says, how long does it take a custom barrel to break in and even out?

    I've been shooting my new 28 nosler, and have been having some funny grouping . Only seems to shoot well when freshly cleaned . Getting .4 groups with Berger 195s at 100 yards ( that's good shooting for me) with 82.3 gr of rl33 .020 off lands .

    Have about 60 rounds down the tube , cleaned it 3 times now. Groups well after cleaning then opens up. Tonight I went out to 200 yards , got some funky 4 shot groups . 2 shots touching at point of aim, 2 shots about 2 inches to the right. On 3 targets I had similar groups, all flyers to the right. Coppered up again? Is it safe to assume The barrel isn't ready to even out yet or am i loosing my mind
     
  2. Bullet bumper

    Bullet bumper Well-Known Member

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    Moving out to 200 you might be getting caught by some wind left to right .
    How many shots break in a barrel is very hard to say as they all differ and it depends on how smooth it was to stat with.
    If you only cleaned it 3 times in the first 60 shots you did not run it in properly .
    Not unusual for a barrel to shoot it's best after a good clean and a fouling shot or two .
    Clean it very well after about 25 shots . Fire two fouling shots as wind sighters and see where they go and reference the wind flags . Then settle down to fire three shot groups . Letting the barrel cool between groups.
    When you can fire three shot in a nice clover leaf consistently , branch out to five shot groups but give more time between shots for barrel cooling .
    Don't leave a round in the hot chamber while waiting for wind changes . Have the bolt back and the round exposed and just close the bolt when you see a good condition coming .
    Your cleaning regime may not be getting the majority of the copper out . It's amazing how many shooters I see that have not been taught how to clean effectively .
    I would try to get the bullet closer to the lands if possible .
     

  3. dok7mm

    dok7mm Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like something isn't tight --- bases, rings or action. Or it could be the scope. If you have access to a good borescope, check out throat and barrel for burrs, copper and carbon buildup after you clean it. Plenty of things it could be, including the load, the recoil, the shooter, etc. Take your pick. More detail about your setup will help figure it out.
     
  4. Bullet bumper

    Bullet bumper Well-Known Member

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    He said , " Getting .4 groups with Berger 195s at 100 yards ".
    I don't think there is anything wrong with the gun or shooter so much .
     
  5. dok7mm

    dok7mm Well-Known Member

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    He also stated he was getting shots that were two inches apart at 200. The OP thinks something is wrong. I too think that something is causing the fliers @ 200.
     
  6. Gene

    Gene Well-Known Member

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    Are you confident of your reloads? Especially brass prep? You don't mention brand of barrel. A properly factory polished barrel which removes any roughness should clean up and shoot well within a couple dozen rounds - if cleaned thoroughly every 5 or 10 rounds. I still shoot one, clean and shoot another, clean, etc. for 20 rounds, and in mot cases it works well.
     
  7. revturbo9967

    revturbo9967 Well-Known Member

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    More information on my set up. Stiller tac 300 action . K&p barrel 1-8 27.5 finished length. Work done by long rifles inc. rings are seekins precision with vortex amg on top.

    I'm not confident in my reloading. I've only been doing it for a few years and still don't know if I'm right or wrong.

    When shooting I let at least 5 minutes between shots once it gets warm, so 4 shots from cold the wait 5 minutes after that. I don't leave the bullet in the chamber heating up last night , as I read this recently.

    Cleaning , i run 2-3 wet patches off butches bore shine down the tube, scrub 10 strokes with brass brush, follow with a few wet patches of hoppes then dry patches till clean. Then 1-2 lightly oiled patches. It's been getting clean pretty quickly .


    One target not finished but this is what It was doing last night .
     

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  8. Switchback2

    Switchback2 Well-Known Member

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    You may also try playing with your powder charge as that pretty low for the 195s,, most seem to like the 85 - 89 gr range. Just another idea
     
  9. revturbo9967

    revturbo9967 Well-Known Member

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    I don't have the throats for that . Groups opened up after cleaning and higher powder charge
     
  10. Laelkhunter

    Laelkhunter Well-Known Member

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    In post #7 you say you are using Butch's Bore Shine and brass brushes? Not sure if you are getting the bore really clean, the Butch's is probably dissolving the brass brush. Are you cleaning until you get a patch with no blue on it? Also, I would not use Butch's then follow up with Hoppes until you get the Butch's out first. Mixing the solvents might not be good. You are using 2 lightly oiled patches as the last step, make sure you push a dry patch down the barrel before you shoot the first shot, the oil in the bore could be changing your point of aim too.

    I was having trouble with my.340 acting similar, putting two shots together, then another two shots elsewhere usually vertical stringing. Turned out to be the powder I was using, R22. I switched to R19, and am now getting constant tight groups well under minute of angle.
     
  11. Greyfox

    Greyfox Well-Known Member

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    I think of two aspects when it comes to break-in. The first is the initial fire-clean routine that seems to get rid of the carbon/copper accumulating rough areas of the barrel that makes for easier cleaning down the road. The second aspect has to do with the stabilization of velocity and can vary based on the specific barrel. With barrels ranging from custom through factory, many of seem to settle in around the 200 round mark with velocities of 20-50FPS higher and tighter ES then the original values. I have rarely seen much of a difference in inherent precision measured at 100-200 yards between a new barrel and one which has seen +200 rounds given an optimized load has been used in both cases. For that is reason I usually hold off establishing serious long range ballistic data until I'm comfortable the barrel has settled in. Not saying this is gospel, but it been my experience over the years.
     
  12. revturbo9967

    revturbo9967 Well-Known Member

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    I'm using a bronze brush, and nylon. I push all of the butchs out first clean before I went to hoppes. Cleaning it as we speak. Patches went clean and I was skeptical, so I ran the brush down again with more shine and patches went blue again . Copper is still in there. So I'm repeating untill fully clean
     
  13. Laelkhunter

    Laelkhunter Well-Known Member

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    Make sure your nylon brush has no brass on it. Some are made with a brass core, and others are made of aluminum or an alloy that won't react to copper solvents.

    I no longer use Butch's or Hoppes, I now use Bore Tech Eliminator. After break-in, my barrel cleans with two or three patches.
     
  14. revturbo9967

    revturbo9967 Well-Known Member

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    At range now with fresh clean. 200 yards , first shot point of aim, second 2 inches to the right