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Bnhpr
12-26-2007, 08:13 PM
Who's the best? Which is a good value?

Stainless or CM?

Krieger
Hart
Douglas
Lothar Walther
Adams and Bennet
Lilja
Shilen
Broughton
Spencer
Lawton
ER Shaw

Charles E
12-26-2007, 08:35 PM
I have a soft spot for William of Occam, so I'll give you an answer.

Some of these makers compete for customers among the best benchrest shooters in the world. If they knew how to eliminate the so-so, the good, and the better-than-average, and offer only "the best," they would do so, advertise & guarantee this, and set a price to match.

While not everyone would want to pay that price, the question as to "best" would be so apparent it would not arise. Since it does, draw the obvious conclusion.

(By the way, you left out Border, Madco & no doubt some others.)

Bnhpr
12-26-2007, 09:04 PM
I have a soft spot for William of Occam, so I'll give you an answer.

Some of these makers compete for customers among the best benchrest shooters in the world. If they knew how to eliminate the so-so, the good, and the better-than-average, and offer only "the best," they would do so, advertise & guarantee this, and set a price to match.

While not everyone would want to pay that price, the question as to "best" would be so apparent it would not arise. Since it does, draw the obvious conclusion.

(By the way, you left out Border, Madco & no doubt some others.)

Plurality should not be posited without necessity... is that better?

There are no real deals any more, I know this to be true. I bought two A&B blanks, thinking that if I screw them up, it's no problem.

It was probably foolish, because I could have just cut back a higher priced barrel also. It's not going to break me by any means.

I should have -reworded my question to "What barrels do you prefer?"

p.s. I did see Border Barrels, but I have a personal grudge against UK machinery,it's my own hang up, so I did not mention them.

wnroscoe
12-26-2007, 09:58 PM
#1 Krieger, My all time favorite flavor and, the only barrel I would own on my personal rifles.

The rest range from Good to Ok to fair, like they say #2 is just the first looser.

vicvanb
12-26-2007, 10:09 PM
After the ruckus over actions I guess I'd better stay out of this one, but...

"I prefer blondes--how could you possibly suggest that redheads are more attractive."

"And by the way--exactly how many beauty contests have you officially judged anyway??"

karls42
12-26-2007, 11:47 PM
The way I see it, if there was a "Best Barrel" every body else would be run out of business pretty quick. Right?

The "best Barrel" can't make up for a bad chamber, a too long throat or a warped action. It still won't win.

Bill De
12-27-2007, 05:59 AM
I use Lilja, but what the heck do I know:p

Bnhpr
12-27-2007, 07:01 AM
After the ruckus over actions I guess I'd better stay out of this one, but...

"I prefer blondes--how could you possibly suggest that redheads are more attractive."

"And by the way--exactly how many beauty contests have you officially judged anyway??"

People should not get offended by other people's opinions. I'm only interested in opinions, since there are no real facts here, just people that believe their opinions are fact.

I'm just interested in what barrels you use on your best shooting rifles, really, your experience is important to me.

Big Al
12-27-2007, 07:08 AM
I see five names on your list that I use and have found all of them to make vary fine barrels. The other names on your list (with the exception of one) I have not used, so I am not in the position to comment.

Most of the barrel makers on your list produce barrels that are better than the average shooter can see the difference, assuming that all the other parts of the puzzle are meant, of course.

If you really want to know which barrels finish first in the hands of top shooters, then look to the match equipment lists for your particular sport.

It all depends on what you will use the barrel for. If you asked which ones are better than factory barrels, most of them on your list, would be better. :D

mwezell
12-27-2007, 07:48 AM
People should not get offended by other people's opinions. I'm only interested in opinions, since there are no real facts here, just people that believe their opinions are fact.

I'm just interested in what barrels you use on your best shooting rifles, really, your experience is important to me.

My opinion is always fact.:D

jackie schmidt
12-27-2007, 08:51 AM
Through the years,I have used several different brands. I guess it was in 1998 I tried Kreigers, and have not used anything since.
I won't give an opinion without giving you my reasons.
From a machinist standpoint, I have always thought that a properly cut rifled barrel is superior to barrels made by other methods. If you order a .237 groove 6mm Krieger, it will be almost identicle in dimensions to one you odered a year ago, or even a year before that.
Most shooters know that I shoot, more or less, the same load in all of my Competition Rifles, with a fair amount of success. I am no "Hall of Fame Shooter", but I have been known to make two bullets touch on occasion. The reason I am able to do this is because all of the different Kriegers I use are so close in their internal dimensions that they all perform almost identicle with that load.
I just recently set back a Unlimited Krieger that is circa 2001. It shoots the same load as the newest ones I have, and does it pretty well. For all general purposes, I could not tell this 7 year old barrel from a new one I just chambered up two weeks ago.
So, you see, it is just not an opinion I am trying to give you. I give you an honest assessment based on what works for me in The Competitive Arena.
Other shooters can give you identicle testimony using another brand of barrels. They have found something that works for them, and see no reason to switch, other than "just wanting to try something different".
I do a lot of that "trying something different" thing, tweeking the combination a tad here, and there, to see if there is something to be gained. But when Match Day comes, I am going to the line with what ever combination I think will give me the best agging capability.
In the past years, part of that combination includes a Krieger Barrel........jackie

ShelleyDavidson
12-27-2007, 09:23 AM
barrels that I've ever had have been Shilens so I tend to shoot them mostly. If Mr. Roscoe is so sure about any one type of barrel I assume that he always wins unless there's a better shooting Kreiger where he's competing.

The absolute, only way, to rate a barrel is to shoot it against a bunch of other brands in competition. I've been beaten by most all brands of barrels.

Shelley

Jay, Idaho
12-27-2007, 09:57 AM
Barrels by these manufacturers have won recent competitions:
Schneider
Bartlein
Half Moon
Lawrence
Rock
We are fortunate to have so many barrelmakers producing top quality products.

Riflemeister
12-27-2007, 10:41 AM
Most replies so far have dealt only with the stainless BR quality barrels. The chrome moly are another thing entirely. Where the stainless nearly all come with a .0001" dimensional guarantee, chrome moly is different. The Kieger is the only one that comes with a .0001" dimensional guarantee in chrome moly. Additionally, it is my belief that on the lighter hunting profiles, the cut rifling will result in less stress in the blank than the button process. My experience has been that hunting rifles barrelled with chrome moly Kriegers have an uncanny ability to place the first shot out of a cold, clean barrel right in the same small group as the rest of the shots. I really do like that, as I don't have to hunt with a fouled bore like I've had to do with some other barrels. They ain't cheap, but if I can get the customer to spring for the cost, I do the job with the knowledge I'll have a happy customer.

Spott3r
12-27-2007, 10:57 AM
Krieger - cut rifled.

:D

wnroscoe
12-27-2007, 05:59 PM
If Mr. Roscoe is so sure about any one type of barrel I assume that he always wins unless there's a better shooting Kreiger where he's competing.

Easy Shelley, I don’t always win. I've had my ass handed to me on more than one occasion :D. One of the barrels on the list I've had two of. The throat moved .020"+ every 15-20 shots on the first one :mad:. That manufacturer replaced the barrel but now, I'm scared of em. Another barrel on that list, I've seen copper so bad it took over an hour to clean it to the point that the accuracy came back, that barrel would be what some would consider one of the top five.

I've owned several Krieger’s and have them on my rifles. Never had a bad one. Several persons I shoot with at various matches have Krieger Barrels on their Rifles, never seen a bad one. FWIW, a six groove Shilen in 6BRM and a Spencer Barreled 6XC have given me fits. Speedy once told me that the six groove Shilens are what put him in the Hall of Fame, he also said that him and Tony B. had several conversations concerning six groove 6mm Barrels (Shilen). They felt that this particular barrel did have the advantage, especially at 200 yards, but hey, I wasn’t there and never heard the conversation??. I think barrels are like everything else, it boils down to the individual sitting behind them.

Roger rodbolt
12-27-2007, 10:34 PM
Who's the best? Which is a good value?

Stainless or CM?

Krieger
Hart
Douglas
Lothar Walther
Adams and Bennet
Lilja
Shilen
Broughton
Spencer
Lawton
ER Shaw

I would highly rate several barrels on your list but would add Bartlein in or at the top.

dennisinaz
12-28-2007, 11:57 PM
I'm certainly no expert, but have bought enough barrels to have an opinion. The worst barrel I have owned is a Shilen. Granted, it wasn't a match barrel, but one of their Lone Star line. Fouled something horrible. Shot decent, but had to be cleaned quite often.

Worst company I have ever dealt with in this arena is Hart. If they were the only ones still making barrels, I would quit shooting. That bad.

Dennis

Butch Lambert
12-29-2007, 10:12 AM
Dennis, The $98 Lone Star grade hasn't been made in many moons.
Butch

ShelleyDavidson
12-29-2007, 10:41 AM
part of the reason is that they've been in business for many years but the fact remains the more BR records have been broken by Shilen Barrels than any other brand. They keep track of that kind of stuff down at the Shilen factory.

I like other brands of barrels also, I'm just saying that bashing Shilen is unfair when they have held more records than any other barrel company. Repeating rumors about any upstanding company is unfair. Heck, I'm kinda down on rumor mongering anyway, I put it in the same category as soap operas.

No matter what brand you choose it really sucks if you bad mouth a barrel company if they don't produce 100% hummers for you. It just doesn't happen!!!

caroby
12-29-2007, 11:44 AM
part of the reason is that they've been in business for many years but the fact remains the more BR records have been broken by Shilen Barrels than any other brand. They keep track of that kind of stuff down at the Shilen factory.

I like other brands of barrels also, I'm just saying that bashing Shilen is unfair when they have held more records than any other barrel company. Repeating rumors about any upstanding company is unfair. Heck, I'm kinda down on rumor mongering anyway, I put it in the same category as soap operas.

No matter what brand you choose it really sucks if you bad mouth a barrel company if they don't produce 100% hummers for you. It just doesn't happen!!!

Yes,
Agree completely Shelley.
The previous post about Hart is a tad unfair.... Might have gotten something
"amiss" with that particular barrel but I don't believe that the Sutton family wouldn't have helped out.... Bill would bend over backwards to ensure that a customer gets what he/she paid for.
The "High-end" barrel market is VERY competitive!
These makers must strive to make every barrel the best they can! Their reputation is on the line with every tube made...


Shelley, look forward to 08 Denton shoots!
Happy New Year all!
cale

John S
12-29-2007, 05:44 PM
but Hart barrels are SUPER and they are great people to deal with.

I shoot Hart, Krieger and Shilen.

Fireball Fred
12-29-2007, 08:03 PM
I have to agree with john. the reason these 3 have been in business for so long is they have maintained quality that long.

Charles E
12-29-2007, 09:42 PM
Gee, it is going to be a long winter.

As long as we're listing, I have used (in alphabetical order), Broughton (North), Hart, Kreiger, Lilja, Pac-Nor, and Shilen. I have a Lawton on the shelf I'll use this winter, & I expect it will shoot as good as the others.

Why? I procrastinate. Then I get in a hurry to finish a project & it is time for "who's got a barrel?" They have all been good, occasionally very good, and the only thing I think I know is that the difference in accuracy is the same within a brand as it is across brands.

JDR
12-30-2007, 09:08 AM
Most replies so far have dealt only with the stainless BR quality barrels. The chrome moly are another thing entirely. Where the stainless nearly all come with a .0001" dimensional guarantee, chrome moly is different. The Kieger is the only one that comes with a .0001" dimensional guarantee in chrome moly. Additionally, it is my belief that on the lighter hunting profiles, the cut rifling will result in less stress in the blank than the button process. My experience has been that hunting rifles barrelled with chrome moly Kriegers have an uncanny ability to place the first shot out of a cold, clean barrel right in the same small group as the rest of the shots. I really do like that, as I don't have to hunt with a fouled bore like I've had to do with some other barrels. They ain't cheap, but if I can get the customer to spring for the cost, I do the job with the knowledge I'll have a happy customer.

Riflemeister: do you think there is any accurcey difference between the two metals if thay are both of high quiltysteel Stainless is used in most bench guns do you think stainless will last longer thanks jerry

Riflemeister
12-30-2007, 11:32 AM
JDR,
The big difference I have noted between chrome moly and stainless is the affinity for copper fouling exhibited by chrome moly. As far as accuracy goes, the only direct comparison I have is two of my 280 AI's. One is a Kreiger chrome moly 9" twist, and the other is a Lilja stainless 10" twist. The chrome moly shades the stainless by maybe 1/16" in accuracy, both shooting the 140 gr Nosler Partition. Does that prove that chrome moly shoots better than stainless? I think the difference is so slight that it could be that I really hit on the right combo for one and the other I'm trying to shoot a less than optimum bullet or powder. We're talking about 3 shot groups in the 5/8" range for both rifles, so I use one when the weather is nice and the other when the weather turns bad.

My general rule is that I use stainless for competition and varmint rifles and chrome moly for hunting rifles, so it would be too easy to just say that stainless is more accurate than chrome moly, simply based on the weight of the barrels and the cartridges they're chambered for. My big consideration for varmint and competition guns is ease of cleaning to go with the accuracy. On hunting rifles, the toughness of chrome moly combine with its greater strength at very low temperatures gives it the nod. On the average hunting trip, if everything goes according to plan, I only fire one or two shots so metal fouling is not an issue.

Overall, I doubt that there is any significant accuracy advantage to equally well made stainless or chrome moly barrels. That said, you'll never find a chrome moly barrel on one of my competition or varmint rifles, but you may find a stainless on one or two of my hunting rifles. I do use a bake on matte black finish for stainless hunting barrels to get rid of that white stick in the woods look.

Bill Leeper
12-30-2007, 12:14 PM
Of course the real reason stainless is used for most match barrels is, it machines so much more easily than chromoly. It is just plain easier to produce a match grade stainless barrel. 4140, though a great material in many respects, just does not finish as nicely as 416 stainless.
I like cut rifled barrels as well but I have to say, it's pretty hard to ctriticize the best buttoned barrels.
The nicest finished barrels and the straightest barrels I have used have been hammer forged barrels from Swiss Arms. Not easy to come by though and appearance aside, don't shoot any better than any others.
I figure all the top few makers make quality barrels to the point that availability determines my barrel choice. Regards, Bill.

dennisinaz
12-31-2007, 12:14 PM
I'm sorry if anyone took what I said for "bashing" Shilen. I only posted what I did as I knew that many top shooter use Shilen and they make some fantastic barrels. I just wanted to point out that there are some lemons out there as well. I sent the barrel back to Shilen and they told me there was nothing wrong with it. Then another barrel showed up in the mail. I called them and asked why they sent me a new barrel. He told me he didn't want any mad customers. I explained that I wasn't mad and if there was nothing wrong with my old barrel, why on earth would I want to replace it with the same exact brand of barrel that may or may not do any better? He said I had a point. I asked him if he wanted his barrel back. He told me no! I gave it away and it turned out to be a real good barrel for this guy.

As for Hart- well I have never dealt with a more arrogant bunch than that; basically, if there is a problem with one of their barrels- then it's the gunsmith's fault! You would think they are all angels reincarnated! I switched to Krieger and have been more than happy.

I feel that for a lightweight sporter barrel, it is easier to get a good cut rifled barrel than a button rifled tube. In BR contours, I feel like this is not an issue.

YMMV

Pete Wass
01-01-2008, 10:42 AM
It has been my observation that much of the quality outcome of a barrel depends on the steel lot it came out of. No matter how close the tollerances of the machining, if the lot of steel is poor, the resultant barrel is likely to be not so good.

I just replaced a Kreiger that had two seasons on it. It coppered from shot one to the last one I shot through it. It, however, shot well enought that I shot it for two seasons. Looking at it with a borescope it looked like a Moonscape inside. This condition was not the fault of Kreiger but the steel it is made of.

A problem for people who depend on gunsmiths to fit barrels is the cost of that function in the event of a bad barrel. Simply replacing the barrel still leaves the person who bought it out quite a lot of money. Perhaps replacing a bad one with two might be a more fair way to proceed for barrel makers. I don't think they replace that many and the cost to them to make a barrel can't be more than 50% of their retail, I wouldn't think.

I would agree that we are indeed fortunate to have so many great barrels to choose from. The two best barrels I have owned to date are 1. A Shilen that coppered the entire time I owned it "BAD COPPERED" and 2. A Pac Nor that never copperd after shot 3. Both of them were superb; I sold both on the rifles they were fitted to simply because I wanted to change Port location on the rifle. Dumb thing to do. :o

craigyboy
01-01-2008, 11:31 AM
Pete I agree with you on the Pac-nor, I have a 3 groove one at the minute on a varmint rifle and it is the easiet barrel to clean by far, cooper fouling is non exsistant and carbon is gone after 4 patches, run in was a breeze and, it is superbly accurate, the most accurate rifle I own by a fair margin.

ShelleyDavidson
01-02-2008, 07:51 AM
We all know how a so called hummer performs. But, what constitutes a "bad barrel"? I suspect that bad means something different to different people.

Do you consider anything except a hummer a bad barrel? Or does it take some mechanical defect to qualify a barrel as "bad"? If you have a barrel that'll agg in the .1s but coppers, is it bad and would Pete require two replacements to mollify him? If a barrel has a squirmy bore but shoots well, is it bad? If a barrel is mechanically perfect but will only agg in the .240s", is it a bad barrel?

I think this may be like the politician who said " I may not be able to define pornography but I know it when I see it."

Shelley

Bnhpr
01-02-2008, 11:25 AM
We all know how a so called hummer performs. But, what constitutes a "bad barrel"? I suspect that bad means something different to different people.

Do you consider anything except a hummer a bad barrel? Or does it take some mechanical defect to qualify a barrel as "bad"? If you have a barrel that'll agg in the .1s but coppers, is it bad and would Pete require two replacements to mollify him? If a barrel has a squirmy bore but shoots well, is it bad? If a barrel is mechanically perfect but will only agg in the .240s", is it a bad barrel?

I think this may be like the politician who said " I may not be able to define pornography but I know it when I see it."

Shelley

Shelley,

I saw your "Tinker Toy" with a 17 twist .308 Shilen.

Very Innovative. That's obviously a good barrel. Is there anything you'd do differently there?

Ben

dennisinaz
01-02-2008, 04:13 PM
I think some barrels are better than others- that doesn't mean the other is "bad", there are, however, "bad" barrels out there. They either foul so bad they can't function well or they plain won't shoot worth a hoot. I have had a couple of those. One was a Hart! One was a Ruger!! In both cases, replacements made all the difference in the world.

I have had a couple of barrels that I wish I had never worn out.

wnroscoe
01-02-2008, 05:03 PM
Check the equipment list sometimes from somewhere like Williamsport, PA. Here's a link for the 2007 World Open results in Heavy Gun, check the list and the barrels on it.
http://www.pa1000yard.com/wo/woresults.php?year=2007&cls=Heavy+Gun&day=1&sortby=Group&tops=No&topct=10&send=Submit

Bnhpr
01-02-2008, 05:52 PM
Check the equipment list sometimes from somewhere like Williamsport, PA. Here's a link for the 2007 World Open results in Heavy Gun, check the list and the barrels on it.
http://www.pa1000yard.com/wo/woresults.php?year=2007&cls=Heavy+Gun&day=1&sortby=Group&tops=No&topct=10&send=Submit

Kreiger cleaned it up, Broughton second, and several others after that. Also, interesting to see 300 mag do so well. 6mm dasher was up there too.

wnroscoe
01-02-2008, 06:12 PM
Kreiger cleaned it up

Certainly, there are fine barrels produced by all but, it is hard to dispute results.

J. Valentine
01-02-2008, 10:05 PM
There is some very good points in these threads but one thing is not covered.
If I ordered a barrel in my name I would get a different barrel than if I got
for example , Toney Boyer to order it for me.
Lynn the service you have recieved is a disgrace. Can he only drill and ream a straight hole ?? nothing else??
This thread does however give me confidense in continuing to move forward on making my own barrels one day.
I could do a better job of machining than that right now.
Really glad I read this post as a mate of mine is about to order two Rimfire barrels from Lilja.

Butch Lambert
01-02-2008, 11:01 PM
J. Valentine, You are dead wrong!
Butch

J. Valentine
01-02-2008, 11:27 PM
I think the customers complaints speak for themselves.

Bnhpr
01-03-2008, 10:19 AM
Question:

Can you send a drawing to a barrel manufacturer and they build you a barrel to the dimensions and tolerances, listed on the drawing?

Is this typically done? Or do you just tell someone on the phone, that it needs to be 1.750 od and xx inches long/claiber/twist/material?

In my profession, when I send a drawing to a machine shop, I specify dimensions, tolerances (distance, diameter and concentricity), flatness (if applicable), material, hardness etc. etc. depending on application.

Do Gunsmiths do the same?

ShelleyDavidson
01-03-2008, 11:02 AM
you can send a drawing to Shilen and they'll, for extra money, contour the barrel to your dimensions. I'd highly recommend a drawing to prevent mis-communications.

If a smith has the time, they'll usually do "one off" jobs at an hourly rate. But to expect a smith to do a lot of extras for standard money may not work too well.

Greg Fowl
01-03-2008, 05:31 PM
I'd like to add adifferent twist, perhaps. I have a douglas, a pac-nor, and kreigers, the latest being put on a custom gun at Gordy Gritters. The best shooting barrel I've ever owned is a K& P cut by Ken Johnson in Raton NM. I don't know if he's still in the business or not, but look at Hawks Ridge results and you'll see a few. But, as for a different twist. I had a nice conversation years ago with Mr Krieger and he told me two things to be true by my experience: Savage makes the best production barrels, and no two pieces of steel are the same and the best barrel maker can't make bad steel good!!!!!! Problem is you don't know till it just won't shoot, no matter what you do. Have a great 2008, shooters. Be careful who you vote for! V/R Greg

J. Valentine
01-03-2008, 06:58 PM
I'd like to add adifferent twist, perhaps. I have a douglas, a pac-nor, and kreigers, the latest being put on a custom gun at Gordy Gritters. The best shooting barrel I've ever owned is a K& P cut by Ken Johnson in Raton NM. I don't know if he's still in the business or not, but look at Hawks Ridge results and you'll see a few. But, as for a different twist. I had a nice conversation years ago with Mr Krieger and he told me two things to be true by my experience: Savage makes the best production barrels, and no two pieces of steel are the same and the best barrel maker can't make bad steel good!!!!!! Problem is you don't know till it just won't shoot, no matter what you do. Have a great 2008, shooters. Be careful who you vote for! V/R Greg

True ! They cant make bad steel good. However , they can put aside the bad batch of steel for lower grade barrels and use a better batch of steel for the high grade barrels and so it goes on through the whole process.
The notion that an experienced barrel maker can not tell a good barrel from a bad one without shooting it is only partially true.
They know their own process and they can predict the process to follow that will produce good barrels.
As with any process you have failures and units that are OK but not your best work.
When it comes to predicting how well a single barrel will shoot that is selected from the previously selected batch of the best barrels then that is when it is very hard to pick a Hummer from a very good barrel without shooting it in your action.

That is why a barrel maker would give their sponsored top shooter a stack of barrels to try out that have already been identified as a batch of the best.
Just a simple thing like :-- Did the deephole drill exit exactly in the center of the blank ? If not it means that profiling will remove an eccentric ammount of steel from around the bore. After profiling it looks the same as anyother barrel but uneven stresses can lurk in the barrel and dimention changes can happen even after stress relief .

Butch Lambert
01-03-2008, 08:41 PM
Mr. Valentine, where did you get all this information?
Butch

Big Al
01-03-2008, 09:05 PM
Can you imagine a barrel maker that buys a melt of steel from Crucible steel, calling them up and saying something like the following. "Analyses, I really don't care I'll buy whatever fifty tons you might have on hand today and I don't care about the impurities, so I not going to pay you for a strick analyses".

If the foundry does not give the buyer what he pays for, do you really think the buyer just takes it in the shorts?

Lets get back to the real world for a moment, shall we.

J. Valentine
01-03-2008, 11:16 PM
Sure you would send back a batch of bad steel if it was not what you ordered
and could not produce a good product.
Although it can be difficult to prove the steel is not exactly what you wanted without specialised help unless it is obvious impurities leaving voids in the finish or noticable unsatisfactory machining properties .
Sometimes you can get caught with a load that is not quite right but still produces a reasonable product .
Sometimes people try to make bigger profits by buying cheap steels from China !

Pete Wass
01-04-2008, 06:13 AM
Krieger
Hart
Broughton
Spencer
Lawton
Douglas
Lothar Walther
E.R.Shaw
Adams and Bennett
Shilen
Lilja

Shelley I rate Lilja as the worst because when you mark a barrel as 1.750 Straight and the largest point on that barrel is 1.660 and it has a large amount of taper too it something is wrong.When you then call and talk to Dan and you get this.I started out with 1.750 stock not the 1-7/8 like I used to but the hole is straight.You have to wonder what he is thinking about.I asked Dan how was this barrel going to fit in my $400 barrel block and why does it have a barber stripe down its entire length instead of the 320 grit finish I paid for.He replied due to the taper it wouldn't grind right on his centerless grinder.I told him I wanted 1.750 straight and that is what it came marked as.He replied again that the bore was straight.
I asked him why my 1.250 straight cylinder barrel was actually 1.200 even though it came marked 1.250 straight
and atleast he didn't tell me the bore was straight again.
He never offered to replace or fix HIS mistakes at all.
Lynn

With this maker. He had a way to blame me for every problem the barrel had. The barrel does not shoot competatively and he had an excuse for at all. I haven't bought any more there nor will I.

Not many months ago there was an article in PS about Kreiger barrels. Mr. Kreiger stated that if a barrel didn't shoot, he would replace it. I think there is a lot of mileage in that statement. If we are to pay what we do to buy a new barrel which is suppose to be made to BR standards and after we pay to have it fitted to our rifles and it won't perform, the maker SHOULD replace it with TWO barrels to cover the cost of the fitting.One of the Newish makers did exactly that for a friend of mine recently; it's only fair.

They are the ones claiming to be producing Quality. They are in the business of Quality, why do we allow them to skate out of their poor Quality?

J. Valentine
01-04-2008, 06:38 AM
Results So far :--
Lilja is poor ,
Krieger is poor
Ed Shilen good ( did the right thing and sent a new barrel ).

Good stuff , Please keep posting your complaints about barrel makers.

Spott3r
01-04-2008, 07:28 AM
Gotta go into bat for Dan and Mr Krieger. Although I must admit the previous post also made me chortle.

I have the privilege of owning a Lilja barreled Turbo that was put together by Butch Hongisto. I am told the rifle may well be 10 years old. When the right ammo is shot through it - that thing shots. I marvel at its ability.

I read an article on 6mmbr that there was this older Gentleman over Sacremento way named Harvey who has been around a while. He prefers Krieger cut rifled barrels.

Now, I know I am a naive newcomer but somedays maybe poor and some good.

If I was a barrelmaker I'd work my darndest to make the best barrels and not poor ones.

:)

Frank Green
01-04-2008, 07:55 AM
Spott3R, Yes Stu prefers cut rifled barrels but you should check your information out for the most part Stu has not been really using Kriegers for about the last year or so now.

Frank @ Bartlein Barrels

J. Valentine
01-04-2008, 02:39 PM
Thanks for your input, but we know that people like Butch Hongisto and other professionals can get good barrels .
Its the ordinary shooter that is sometimes getting bad service and poor quality not the pros.
Do we hear a single complaint about a bad barrel sold to any professional gunsmith. No ! because they get better treatment .
Not trying to pick on gunsmiths they are just doing the best for their business and customers.
This thread is about why some barrel makers treat the average shooter badly , discriminate.

J. Valentine
01-04-2008, 04:17 PM
Does not matter how well it might shoot if it is not what you ordered and cant use it . This whole sport is based on precision fit of just about everything.

ArtinNC
01-04-2008, 07:49 PM
Can I put my 2 cents in here?? I'll not say how many barrels maker I have had barrels from . But I stick with The three that I'v had the best luck with and all three I'm very happy with . Shilen, Broughton(North), and, Hart . Not in any order.
Art

jackie schmidt
01-04-2008, 08:57 PM
Back when I first started shooting Benchrest, I was lucky to score a couple of decent barrels. They did not foul, and allowed me to hit the ground running.
I asked the Gunsmith who was doing my work, (before I did my own), to order me a new spare, from the same manufacturer, (a very well known one) and chamber it up. He did. The barrel fouled badly, and just would not shoot. Since I was still fairly new to the game, I had another very well known 'smith look at it.
He informed me that the barrel was a piece of crap, and probably would remain that way. he showed me on a video borescope where the problem was. I contacted the manufacturer, and told him the problems I was having, and he informed me that there was probably nothing wrong with the barrel, and I probably just needed to put a few more rounds through it.
I did. And it never got any better. I called the manufacturer back, and said I wanted to send the barrel to him so he could take a look. He told me to not waste my time, and he was confident that there was nothing wrong with the barrel.
I just said "OK", and decided that I would just never buy another barrel from that company.
Gosh knows how many barrels I have purchaced since then. But never from them. I do hope that the money that they saved by not wasting time on me has made up for the lost sales that they might have recieved over the years.
Of course, back then, I was just a struggling new comer, trying to make two bullets touch. Now that I am a seasoned veteran, (still trying to make two bullets touch), maybe I would garner a little more respect.
But that company will never get that chance..........jackie

Spott3r
01-05-2008, 01:16 AM
Sounds like you guys have a big bone to chew.

They sound like genuine beefs.

Why would Lilja or Krieger produce bad products and offer less service?

:confused:

Spott3r
01-05-2008, 04:09 PM
Good point. Sad but..:(

And Thanks.

Al Nyhus
01-05-2008, 09:01 PM
Results So far :--
Lilja is poor ,
Krieger is poor
Ed Shilen good ( did the right thing and sent a new barrel ).

Good stuff , Please keep posting your complaints about barrel makers.

Lilja barrels have helped me win many yardages, Grand Aggs., a couple of State Championships and a National Championship (2003 IBS Score Nationals). How could I have been so stupid as to use a barrel maker whose products are..... "poor"?

'Ya gotta wonder.....

Chris Luke
01-05-2008, 09:44 PM
Have any of you found that a barrel (Hart or Lilja or Kreiger) from Midway or Brownelles is of less quality that if you got it from the manufacturer?

Thanks

J. Valentine
01-05-2008, 10:07 PM
Al being a custom bullet maker I have great respect for you , but you are missing the point completely.
You are well know and an accomplished competition shooter and you would have no trouble getting a good product!
You would have used a well know and respected gunsmith to get your first barrels . He would have no trouble getting a good barrel or its replacement.

Its the UNKNOWN SHOOTER , THE ORDINARY GUY ON THE STREET that is getting it in the neck from some barrel makers worldwide .

Its not a difficult concept to understand.
If you went to a top hotel in New York would get the same service as Bill Gates ? I think not.
Its the same for buying a barrel , if they have never heard of you and think you are a mug they palm off the second quality crap.

However Lilja came undone when he misstook Lynn for a nobody.
NO ONE IS SAYING THAT THEY CANT MAKE A GOOD BARREL!
WHAT I AM SAYING IS THAT SOME MAKERS TAKE ADVANTAGE OF ORDINARY FOLKS AND SELL THEM LESSER QUALITY THAN THEY HAVE PAYED FOR . IT HAPPENS IN MANY INDUSTRIES.

I dont think you have read all the posts from the start my previous post is an overal comment on service , attitude , warranty , product quality supplied . Nobody intentionaly wants to say a bad word about our industry but if you read them all you will see I am not the only one.
Even Jackie Schmidt admits he has been caught with a dud barrel " WHEN HE WAS JUST STARTING OUT "
Lets stop treating our barrel makers like they are gods ! because thats what helped this situation to happen . When there is injustice to gun owners we should talk about it or this forum could become a waste of time.

CYanchycki
01-05-2008, 10:21 PM
NO ONE IS SAYING THAT THEY CANT MAKE A GOOD BARREL!
WHAT I AM SAYING IS THAT SOME MAKERS TAKE ADVANTAGE OF ORDINARY FOLKS AND SELL THEM LESSER QUALITY THAN THEY HAVE PAYED FOR . IT HAPPENS IN MANY INDUSTRIES.

You guys are going to have to forgive me here but what has been quoted is what scares me about having to order barrels from the makers in the US.

You know all the red tape we have to go thru to get a barrel up to Canada? Thank God at least our dollar is worth something right now.

If we get one, two or ten sent up and a few are crap, it is a royal pain in the KEESTER to resolve. We are a small market up here and I am really skeptical sometimes of what the quality may be. I would like to think that since we are a small group of people who are actually interested in Benchrest that we could be treated as equals. That skepticism unfortunately will never leave me.

Just my opinion.

Calvin

Hal
01-05-2008, 11:49 PM
If MONEY is all the "BARREL" makers are after why don't the sell the "HUMMERS" for a $1000.00 or put them on EBAY (to bring top $$$$).

And sell the "lesser barrels" for the amount according to what match they can win.(Do you think the "BARREL SORTERS" have a Black Market thing going? :) )

Are the Bullet Makers, Powder People, and the rest of the industry in on this also?

Inquiring minds want to know???

Hal

S.G
01-06-2008, 12:51 AM
Lynn, it's nice to see someone not sugar coat the truth.

LRCampos
01-06-2008, 06:50 AM
Have any of you found that a barrel (Hart or Lilja or Kreiger) from Midway or Brownelles is of less quality that if you got it from the manufacturer?

Thanks

I bought two Shilen and one Douglas, all Match Grade, from Brownells about 8 years ago. And every one of them disapointed me.

I asked a representative of Shilen and he assured me that the barrels they sell to Brownells were exactly the same barrel they sell directly to the customer.

So, the result is that I dont trust Shilen or Douglas barrels to shoot anymore...

Al Nyhus
01-06-2008, 08:02 AM
....you are missing the point completely.
You are well know and an accomplished competition shooter and you would have no trouble getting a good product!
You would have used a well know and respected gunsmith to get your first barrels . He would have no trouble getting a good barrel or its replacement.

Its the UNKNOWN SHOOTER , THE ORDINARY GUY ON THE STREET that is getting it in the neck from some barrel makers worldwide .

'Morning. I'll probably regret posting this. I know I regret my original post. Threads like this should die a quick death and I've probably only succeeded in prolonging the inevitable. :( But now that I've opened my yap, I suppose I better finish what I started. Not that it will make any difference, but here goes:

Just to clarify things a bit, I went down and checked my records on my Lilja barrel purchases. Not one of the 8 Lilja barrels I've used were ordered directly from Lilja by me:
- 4 were ordered by my 'smith. 3 of those 4 were used to 'fill out' an order to get to the next discount level. Lilja Barrels certainly never knew who these 'filler' barrels were going to.
- 2 were purchased by me from pals that happened to have one or two left over from their '5 or more' orders. Lilja Barrels certainly never knew who the end user of these was going to be.
- 2 were ordered directly from Lilja on a one-at-a-time basis by my 'smith for me. On the first of these, it was the first time my 'smith had ever ordered a barrel from Lilja. At that time, my 'smith was unknown among BR shooters....hardly a candidate for getting a 'hand picked' barrel. :rolleyes:

But my real point here isn't the defense of a company that I feel makes a quality product, as it is a cautionary message about being too quick to judge a company based on a few isolated instances and then to post these 'findings' on the Internet as 'fact'.

Interestingly, I don't have a Lilja on any of my BR guns at this time, so it's not like I have some sort of vested interest here. I just think that posting these sorts of inflamatory things about situations that we don't know all the facts about has the potential to cause great harm to a company. We don't know all the facts. Yet we sit back and judge and pontificate about a company (any company) based on heresay and the classic 'he said/she said' scenario? Doesn't seem quite kosher to me.

In defense of this, I'm going to point out the case of one poster on BRC that used to badmouth one of the biggest barrelmakers over barrels that were, in his opinion, junk. He would lament long and loudly over this..all the while assuring everyone that tried to help him that eveything else was fine with his setup...it was the barrels that were junk. Well, lo and behold..it turned out that the freebore diameter in his chamber was too small. It was a reamer problem. Not a barrel problem. But it was the barrelmaker that took the slamming. And did some people make purchase decisions based off his erroneous postings? Probably.

Some people seem to have issues with every component they buy: actions, barrels, stocks, triggers, rests, scopes...you name it, they have problems with it. The common demominator seems to be the person, not the product, in some of these cases. None of this is directed at any individual here. Just an observation.

I haven't been in the sport a real long time, but long enough to see people have issues with almost every brand of barrel out there. And I agree that customer service after a problem crops up is where a company can really shine for the customer. And I also know that at times the customer service of all companies (not just in this sport) falls short of what the customer needs to have done to satisfy him or here. It happens...I've let it happen to me in my 'day job', just like most of us have done.

Good shootin'. :) -Al

Bnhpr
01-06-2008, 08:26 AM
The best information I've taken from this so far is match score results.

Does anyone have any more of this information?
What barrels are winning?

I'm sure everyone puts out their friday afternoon barrels, but I figure that's a chance everyone takes.

So who's winning with what barrels?

Jay, Idaho
01-06-2008, 09:02 AM
Lilja makes every barrel to fill an order, except the rimfire, pre-fit barrels. Each barrel is lapped and checked with the rigid, fixed bore scope system in the shop. There are no bins, boxes or racks for barrels of different quality levels. There don't seem to be any "special runs" of barrels for particular people or customers.
I know this because I have visited his old location and his new shop on several occasions, talked to everybody in the shop and observed the operations. On occasion, Dan was absent so I could observe the steps without concern of being a bother to anyone or taking people's time.
I have only used Broughton, Hart, Kreiger, Lawrence, Lawton, Lilja, Pacnor and Shilen barrels (in alpha order) and all were fine for their intended use. I would use any of them again. Many of them did very well at 1000 yard BR but the owner/shooter is usually the key factor.

An in-depth discussion on triggers would be real interesting. Where posters could say whatever they wanted without offending the trigger makers but it isn't going to happen for several reasons. Not all trigger systems are loved by all shooters and for good reasons. So we talk about it offline.

I'm outa here,

Al Nyhus
01-06-2008, 09:30 AM
Here's somethng else to consider..a parting shot, if you will. ;)

Would any of us be anxious to have 'smiths and mfgs. post a thread with the heading:

Rate These Customers :eek:

For consideration. ;) -Al

Hal
01-06-2008, 10:01 AM
Lynn

First off let me say I agree with you on the Lilja barrel thing. If someone orders a 1.750" diameter barrel that what they should get. Dan should admit his mistake and make it right.

The reason I thought SHILEN sold different grades barrels was to fill the demand for people with different needs.

The difference in the price of the different grade barrels reflects the increased labor cost to make a better grade barrel.

The biggest cost of a product is usually labor cost, not material cost.

Some people don't feel they need a select match grade barrel to replace the barrel on their deer rifle, that was ruined when it was fired with a chunk of mud in it.

Maybe the prairie dog hunter wants to replace the barrel on his trusty varmint rifle that has the throat shot out from to many 300-500 round days at the dog towns.

He doesn't require a barrel that groups in the .2's. He fires at one target at a time, if he misses, no big deal just move to the next dog.

By making several different grades of barrels SHILEN can target( :) ) different niche markets, GOOD ECONOMICS.

I don't know about all barrel makers but some will only let the best they can make go out the door.
I have out in my shop the start of a SS barrel blank that has a .22 hole in it but no rifling it failed inspection and was rejected. You can make lot of washer out of one barrel blank.:)

Hal

Big Al
01-06-2008, 10:34 AM
I've kept quiet so far about this issue with Lilja, because I like Dan personally.

To be honest, I have two barrel blanks from him that I ordered from him, talked to him on the phone to order. Both blanks to be .980 dia, one blank a .224 in one in eight twist and the other to be a .224 in a one in seven twist. Both for AR-15's for my Son. The barrels came marked as seven and eight.

Trouble was, they are .223 barrels. Now I don't know anybody that uses a seven or eight twist for .22 rimfire. The chamber end of one barrel is clearly marked .223, the other is not stamped at all.

All of this would have been OK if I had anything that would work for that dia to thread to at that time.

When I called Dan and told him about this he offered no explanation or offer to replace them. I've bought a lot of barrel since then, but no more Lilja's.

I wish it never happened, and this is the only time I've said anything publicly about it.:confused:

Bnhpr
01-06-2008, 10:54 AM
I've kept quiet so far about this issue with Lilja, because I like Dan personally.

To be honest, I have two barrel blanks from him that I ordered from him, talked to him on the phone to order. Both blanks to be .980 dia, one blank a .224 in one in eight twist and the other to be a .224 in a one in seven twist. Both for AR-15's for my Son. The barrels came marked as seven and eight.

Trouble was, they are .223 barrels. Now I don't know anybody that uses a seven or eight twist for .22 rimfire. The chamber end of one barrel is clearly marked .223, the other is not stamped at all.

All of this would have been OK if I had anything that would work for that dia to thread to at that time.

When I called Dan and told him about this he offered no explanation or offer to replace them. I've bought a lot of barrel since then, but no more Lilja's.

I wish it never happened, and this is the only time I've said anything publicly about it.:confused:

God bless you Big Al,
You, are in fact, humble.

I'd have shipped them back, with a letter, asking for my money back, cc'd to the better business bureau.

It's one thing crying about group size, but when you order a .224 and get .223, that's a whole different kettle of fish.

The only question you have to ask, is to yourself, and did you say .224, and if your certain you did, you should pursue this.

But, as you mention, who to heck would order an 8 twist .223 barrel. You'd think someone in the shop would question that.

Ben

chris/a
01-08-2008, 06:09 AM
JUST one question is there any chance of a unknown shooter receiving a top class barrel. thank you :(

Dusty Stevens
01-08-2008, 06:53 AM
why not just let the gunsmith get it for you? they don't have any headaches with the mfr. right?

Butch Lambert
01-08-2008, 09:49 AM
Chris,
When I first started I was lucky enough to get a real good barrel from Hart, Kreiger, and Shilen. Unfortunately I didn't know what I had. I would shoot a .150 and follow it with a .350. I was the Barrel Man for a few years and sold several thousand barrels. Yes, Tony Boyer and some of the other great shooters got some of them. He had no way of knowing what he was getting as I might ship Dwight 50 barrels. Some of those were Tony's and some just went to Dwight's customers.
Chris, nobody yet has posted that they or anybody can inspect a barrel and say it is a hummer. You can see flaws with a borescope and do some measuring. If it ain't right, send it back.
So many things have been posted as fact on the forums by people that heard somebody say something and they take it as fact. If you know anybody that can select a hummer before chambering it, I will pay him $100 per barrel for his expertise.
Butch

Dave Short
01-08-2008, 06:15 PM
Chris,
When I first started I was lucky enough to get a real good barrel from Hart, Kreiger, and Shilen. Unfortunately I didn't know what I had. I would shoot a .150 and follow it with a .350. I was the Barrel Man for a few years and sold several thousand barrels. Yes, Tony Boyer and some of the other great shooters got some of them. He had no way of knowing what he was getting as I might ship Dwight 50 barrels. Some of those were Tony's and some just went to Dwight's customers.
Chris, nobody yet has posted that they or anybody can inspect a barrel and say it is a hummer. You can see flaws with a borescope and do some measuring. If it ain't right, send it back.
So many things have been posted as fact on the forums by people that heard somebody say something and they take it as fact. If you know anybody that can select a hummer before chambering it, I will pay him $100 per barrel for his expertise.
Butch



I'll give you a healthy 43% markup if you'll have him select a small pile of 'em for me....

Seriously, the best barrel I've had in a long time was bought from Sinclair by a friend of mine (unknown to the Benchrest crowd) a while back. He told me that they said they had three in stock, and they just pulled one off the shelf and sent it to him.

-Dave-:)

dennisinaz
01-12-2008, 08:44 PM
My best barrel to date is a Krieger 1:11 30 cal. I made a call and checked on wait times. He told me to hold on and came back on the line and said he had one! I had it in a week. I don't know if it was an extra, a stock item or if someone canceled an order- I really don't care:D

Chisolm
01-12-2008, 09:49 PM
Bartlien barrels isnít on the list but after some of the comments (especially Lynnís relating to another barrel supplyer)I have some things to say about Bartlien and Frank Green (a member and contributor of this forum).
First if you arenít going to read my entire post please stop here or you might get the wrong idea of my post.
This fall I ordered a barrel from Bartlien, their website said that they were taking orders but had no delivery dates or something to that effect. So I called and talked to Frank to order a 7mm barrel for a 1000yd light gun, and asked when I might expect it, he said I should have it by Christmas. I thought thatís not bad and placed the order.
I received the barrel around the 2nd week of Dec. When I pulled it from the package (packed very well) I did some measuring and found the shank was 1.20x, I had ordered a 1.250 shank. I called Frank and explained the problem and he said he didnít know how that could have happened. He said they were on 7mm barrels at the time and would get one with the correct contour out to me right away. In less than a week I received the correct barrel and still before Christmas.
I got around to chambering the barrel this week(7mm SAUM) and started break-in and load development today. All I can say is I am very impressed.
I loaded 5 rounds for break-in.
The first shot I had quite a bit of copper fouling, the second much less, the third very little and the fourth none, so I didnít use the fifth round for break-in.
I shot 43 rounds for load development 3 for sighting in and the rest a duplicated ladder test. The barrel shot very well on the first 20 but really started to settle in on the last 20. After all the shooting I cleaned again. I ran 3 wet patches of CR-10 through to get rid of the powder fouling and let the last one set. I then ran a dry patch through and got a little blue from one land. I ran another wet patch through and let it set about 20 minutes and got no copper with the following dry patch.
So far I am very impressed with this barrel, looks like it's a keeper.:cool:
And as far as preferential treatment on who gets the good barrels, I'm a nobody.:D
Keep up the good work Frank
James

4Mesh
01-13-2008, 09:27 PM
JUST one question is there any chance of a unknown shooter receiving a top class barrel. thank you :(

Yes there absolutely is.

Now my question:

Is there a good chance that the Unknown shooter perhaps has little experience in shooting and regardless of what barrel they receive, may well remain unknown?

I've seen ho-hum barrels get re-chambered to a different cartridge and become great barrels. I've seen them get no change other than a new owner and become great barrels. I've seen really great barrels get treated poorly by their owner (me) and become really not so great barrels.

Shilen:

Some here seem to think they make two grades of barrels and it's because they screw up some. It's not a matter of making a mistake, so much as going through inspection after manufacture, and being graded by dimension. Shilen has a specification for what consitutes a select match and if a barrel is lapped a few ten thousanths more, in order to clean up the tool marks in it, then it is no longer a select match. They are looking for an interior finish that is of a known quality. One barrel may need more lapping to get to that point than another, so that one becomes another grade. It does not mean one bit that it is a worse barrel. Very possibly they may work better for all we know. Maybe it will work better if you've got slightly fat bullets or may work with a different load. There's millions of combinations in this game and the barrel is only one piced of the pie. Albeit, a big piece.

I have only once ever sent a barrel back to a manufacturer. I now after more experience, am not convinced that anything was their fault. There may have been nothing wrong with the barrel. I was very early in my shooting days then and I am sure that manufacturer did not know me other than being on the customer list. They were extremely fair about the replacement. They are on the list at the top of the thread. I would buy from them again. Others here evidently would not.

[paragraph deleted] cause I don't even want to respond to the one idea posted around page 4 that is so ridiculous I'm speechless.

While equipment lists are a great source of finding out what wins, they are also a great source for finding what is the flavor of the month too. Ask your gunsmith for a recommendation for the cartridge you want. In some cases, a gunsmith may use one brand for one caliber and another for a different one, just because from experience, they have a feeling about one working better than another.

zeke mccune
01-14-2008, 04:15 PM
Hi Gang:

I have had good barrels and some real stinkers. Tradition has it that one gets bad news first, so here goes.

The worst barrel that I ever had was a Hart. I sent them my action M70 and a rifle blank and asked them to make a rifle for me. The rifle that they sent me would shoot 1.375" groups. I returned the rifle where they checked and sent me targets that agged .280", this was a heavy .220 Swift. I could get .750" out of the the gun that I had stripped the action form for this project.
I took the gun to another benchrest who said," his child could have done a better job."

The story is much longer but I was out of a wad of money and had a POS! No more HART barrels fo me!

The good news is that I had a 6PPC that would not shoot well. I talked to the gunsmith who built it and he said that he would try it to see what was the problem. He did and called me and said that I was I correct, this barrel will not shoot! He called Shilen and Shilen said that they would replace the barrel. The new Shilen shot great.

Speedy built me a 30X47 with a Lilja barrel and it shoots fantastic.

Oh yes, I have a 25-06 Herters barrel that will outshoot the Hart barrel! LOL

Zeke

wnroscoe
01-14-2008, 08:03 PM
Wow, 7 pages, whodathunkit. :confused: :confused: :confused:

wnroscoe
01-14-2008, 09:10 PM
Bad shooters make good barrels look bad.

Stephen Perry
Angeles BR

And good/great barrels will never make bad shooters shoot good, tis the way it is.

If a person with a "Bad Barrel" spent less time complaining about it and more time studying BR/loading/shooting maybe the number of bad barrels they had/have would decrease?!?

wnroscoe
01-14-2008, 10:16 PM
I'm content using the Kreigers although half price does sound fair. I'll be planting tomatos in a few weeks, I'll need stakes for that :) ;)

4Mesh
01-14-2008, 10:36 PM
Phil thanks for confirming that Shilen doesn't set out to make two different grades of barrels.Now tell us how Hart,Lilja,Broughton,Krieger,Bartlein,K-P,Lawton and a couple others only make one grade?
Lynn

Lynn,
I think it comes down to several things. Either the manufacturing process, marketing policy, or even just their opinion of what constitutes a match barrel. These differ from one barrel maker to the next, especially when talking about the three different methods of rifling.

Basically, all barrel makers have a target number for the eventual diameter of the hole, and the interior finish. All methods(cut, button, forged) will have variation in the final product. Each website of any of these manufacturers will usually specify the dimensions that they are attempting to hit. Notice I say "attempting to hit". It's a fact of manufacturing that holding a size is difficult to do when you are drilling 30" holes and trying to maintain 10ths with a 16micro finish on a featured interior. Much more so than measuring it when it's done. Shilen could just as easily open up the tolerance they specify and now all barrels will fit in the "Select match" category. They make a concious choice not to do that. THEY believe that there could be a difference, an advantage, to having the one that is closer to the mean. Thus, they market it as such and charge a higher price. This follows right along with what Charles E Said quite a lot earlier in the thread about them knowing the diff from one barrel to the next. Other barrel makers evidently do not feel that dimensional difference constitutes a change in grade. Which is correct is for the customer to decide.

Ok, fine. Now, does the variation in internal diameter make even a lick of difference? I say no. Do I buy Select Match barrels? Absolutely yes. Why? I have no idea! I guess I have $100 I don't know what else to do with so I buy the one that says select on it. Same reason everyone else does what they do. Cause they think it might work better. Does it? Who knows! As I said before, that lower grade barrel might just work better for all I know. Sadly, I have to say I've never tried one. Is it Shilens fault I'm a sucker and pay the extra $100? Well, no, but, you also don't see me here complaining about the price, or their barrels or saying that because they make up about one percent of the equipment list at Williamsport that a person should not get one of them for 1K use.

I am not saying that Shilen's policy is better or worse. Not saying that other makers are lying that they only make one grade. All barrels can shoot well.


Another Option
Maybe we could sell our bad barrels to you guys and you could use them to win some Hall Of Fame Points?
Half price sounds fair.
I have seen this happen as well. It was very funny to watch.


Al being a custom bullet maker I have great respect for you , but you are missing the point completely.
You are well know and an accomplished competition shooter and you would have no trouble getting a good product!
You would have used a well know and respected gunsmith to get your first barrels . He would have no trouble getting a good barrel or its replacement.

Its the UNKNOWN SHOOTER , THE ORDINARY GUY ON THE STREET that is getting it in the neck from some barrel makers worldwide .

NO ONE IS SAYING THAT THEY CANT MAKE A GOOD BARREL!
WHAT I AM SAYING IS THAT SOME MAKERS TAKE ADVANTAGE OF ORDINARY FOLKS AND SELL THEM LESSER QUALITY THAN THEY HAVE PAYED FOR . IT HAPPENS IN MANY INDUSTRIES.

I would be willing to bet that if you buy a barrel from vendor X and it is a X caliber of X twist and X taper, then some "well known shooter" buys the same barrel exactly, that most, if not all of the "well known shooters" will trade you barrels on the spot, then procede to turn that barrel into what you consider a "hummer" and you may well turn the one they gave you into a "bummer". Those of you who believe this stuff either do not compete enough, or not in the right places. After a while you will find that the folks who get all the hummer barrels are consistant, hard working shooters who do thier homework and bring their best stuff on match day.

Big Al
01-15-2008, 12:06 AM
I've only had one bad barrel in my shooting life made by a major barrel maker, that barrel was made just before the makers death in 1967. When I say bad, it was terrible.

If you get a .250" barrel that won't get under a .250", then I suppose that I've had my share of them. But I sure as heck never thought of them as bad barrels. You have one you know it ain't going to get you far up the latter towards a win.

When I see the top barrel makers shoot BR matches and don't see them in the top of the list. I don't figure they are using the worst barrels they make.

Further up on the same list you find the winners using the same make barrel as the barrel maker, I think something else is going on. :confused:

ShelleyDavidson
01-15-2008, 07:27 AM
Three times in the last two years, I've chambered barrels that failed to live up to the standards needed to win so I took them off. Later, I re-worked these barrels to fit another rifle or changed to a different chamber and these three barrels came to life and I've won with them. There's a lot of shooters that consider a barrel bad if it requires a different tune than what they consider their standard load. Can we hold a barrel maker responsible for the barrel steels harmonics even when hummers and bummers come from the exact same shipment of steel? In my opinion, the barrel maker is responsible for using good materials and making a product with proper dimensions.

A friend of mine has a habit of buying, for a deep discount, other peoples failures. He'll then work with that barrel till he finds out what it likes and come kick your butt with it. This doesn't always work out for him, but it seems to work more often than not.

There are undoubtedly some bad barrels that get shipped but, it ain't always just the barrels fault, just sometimes it's mine.

Shelley

Frank Green
01-15-2008, 09:06 AM
To all! Please go and look at my response to the thread the number of grooves under 1000 yard benchrest if you haven't already. I would link it to this but don't know how to do that! Sorry!

A lot of you have made really good comments here.

There are a ton of variables. Not just the barrel or steel, but gunsmithing, stock work and bedding, the chamber reamer weather it is conducive to accuracy and also if it was made correctly and even the sights weather they be match open or scopes and are the holding zero or tracking properly and the last variable is the human factor.

Later, Frank @ Bartlein

PPP MMM
01-15-2008, 09:21 AM
Three times in the last two years, I've chambered barrels that failed to live up to the standards needed to win so I took them off. Later, I re-worked these barrels to fit another rifle or changed to a different chamber and these three barrels came to life and I've won with them. There's a lot of shooters that consider a barrel bad if it requires a different tune than what they consider their standard load. Can we hold a barrel maker responsible for the barrel steels harmonics even when hummers and bummers come from the exact same shipment of steel? In my opinion, the barrel maker is responsible for using good materials and making a product with proper dimensions.

A friend of mine has a habit of buying, for a deep discount, other peoples failures. He'll then work with that barrel till he finds out what it likes and come kick your butt with it. This doesn't always work out for him, but it seems to work more often than not.

There are undoubtedly some bad barrels that get shipped but, it ain't always just the barrels fault, just sometimes it's mine.

Shelley

,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,BUT not everybody wants to wast hundreds of rounds to find the right load that may not even exist. It's obvious that not every barrel can be a winner, but if someone who's experienced and is used to shoot small groups can't find the right load after 80-100 rounds there is something else to be improved on. I don't see many of those who want to waste 900 rounds to find the right load and to have 100 accurate shots left before they reach the lifetime of the barrel.

Shoot well

Peter

Butch Lambert
01-15-2008, 09:54 AM
Here you go Frank. http://benchrest.com/forums/showthread.php?t=48323
Butch

zeke mccune
01-15-2008, 09:54 AM
Hi Lynn:

All of the work was done by Hart Rifle Barrles in New York. The person who cussed me out and hung upon me was a guy who was P.J. He was a real charmer!
Oh yes, all of the diagnostic work that Hart did for me,in a futile attempt to get this rifle to shoot, I payed for.! Several boxes of Norma Swift ammo and a very hefty per hour charge for labour was also payed by me!

If you have any other questions about this situation, kindly feel free to ask.

Good shooting,

Zeke

Frank Green
01-15-2008, 10:59 AM
Peter, I understand where you are coming from with out wanting to waste a 1000 rounds of ammo down the barrel to try and figure out what is wrong with it/the gun.

Give you an example. Early last year we had a customer who had one of our 6mm's on a short range bench gun (6ppc). He had about 300 rounds on it and really couldn't get it to shoot (averaged in the .3's). He sent it back to us and we couldn't find anything wrong with it (we didn't have the whole gun to look at.). Long story short someone else had heard about that barrel and called to tell me about what he thought was wrong with it (he thought the wrong style throated reamer was used) and was wondering if I still had it. I said yes. This guy is a top smith and wins matches. So I sent it to him. He found out when it was fitted up to the action the bolt was hitting the breech cone on the barrel. This as we all know causes a binding situation and this effects accuracy. All the guy did was give the breech cone more clearance. Guess what? Barrel now averages mid 1's.

When you have a problem and you didn't build the gun my first suggestion is to take it back to the smith to look the whole gun over (I know this isn't always the easiest thing to do). If the smith can't find anything wrong call the barrel maker and ask them they're suggestions/ideas. Have another shooter shoot the gun also. These are ideas and suggestions. Each person has to make up they're own mind as to how much they put into it etc....looking at they're components, ammo, the whole picture.

Sometimes there is no short answer or any answer at all. Each one has to ask that question themselves and with the help of others if possible.

How much time and money do you put into it? That you have to answer yourself. I don't like it myself when I don't have something working for me or even a customer. I like to try and find an answer the best way I can.

Hope this made some sense.

Later, Frank

PPP MMM
01-15-2008, 02:52 PM
That was well said, nobody knows everything and we all learn from those experiences of others.

Shoot well
Peter