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Thread: Barrel Lapping

  1. #1
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    Barrel Lapping

    Can someone please tell me what is barrel lapping and how its preformed? If this question has been asked already can some send me the link.
    Thanks
    Bored184

  2. #2
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    Lapping a barrel is usually done by the barrel maker... it is not something a consumer normally would do... in fact not many gunsmiths would do it either...

    It involves pouring a lead lap within the bore and with abrasive paste work from end to end finding "tight" spots and lapping to get a smooth barrel.

    Done properly on a quality barrel and you end up with a very high quality barrel that will foul very little and shoot very well. (Most custom barrel makers do this)

    Done poorly it can make a barrel worse.

  3. #3
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    My father has done some gun smithing work for several years but he has no experience lapping barrels. I would like to know if it is beneficial, are there different ways of doing it and how to go by doing it. My father said he would give me all the help he could.

  4. #4
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    If you try lapping by hand you will probably need to cut the ends of the barrel back when your done.
    Instead you might want to try fire lapping the barrel. That's probably your best chance for success.
    Several companies make bullets coated with different grades of abrasive that you just load and shoot through the barrel.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by bored184 View Post
    My father has done some gun smithing work for several years but he has no experience lapping barrels. I would like to know if it is beneficial, are there different ways of doing it and how to go by doing it. My father said he would give me all the help he could.

    I would have to ask why you think your barrel needs lapping? There are millions of barrels out there that are not lapped..

  6. #6
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    Lightbulb advise

    bored 184, this is not an area to teach ones self gunsmithing as they can change a good barrel to junk incredably fast. instead for the beginner use david tubbs fire lapping bullets if you think it will improve your barrel. Greg Moyer

    as always free advise is always worth the money paid!

  7. #7
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    I've got a Kimber 82G that shoots great but I have read some about re-lapping a barrel. I know this gun has seen a lot of rounds before I received it, so I didn't know if this is something I needed to look into to gain some more accuracy.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by bored184 View Post
    I've got a Kimber 82G that shoots great but I have read some about re-lapping a barrel. I know this gun has seen a lot of rounds before I received it, so I didn't know if this is something I needed to look into to gain some more accuracy.
    Lapping a barrel isn't something I would even consider in trying to achieve better accuracy...

    Having your present rifle cleaned and bedded properly may help...

    Having a quality match grade barrel installed and correctly bedded will boost the accuracy level considerably.

  9. #9
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    Thanks for all the info, I think I will just stay away from barrel lapping all together. haha.

  10. #10
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    I'll give you my definition of barrel lapping. It's where you pour a lead lap in the barrel on the end of a cleaning rod and using lapping compound, turn a barrel that probably ain't a world beater, into one that really sucks.

  11. #11
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    Post Now come on...

    Bored 184,

    What they say is true. However one of the best Rimfire shooters taught himself how to lap a barrel. Eventually he got very good at it. It was only a part of what he did to shoot well. Reading the wind is another part.

    Bill Calfee is undoubtedly a great barrel lapper and this shows in the results of his rifles.

    If you have the ken to follow thru on it. You may well find many better barrels for your service. Patience and diligence will have to go with you for this adventure to be worth your time.

    Slugging the barrel is another term that should interest you.

    Have fun,
    Spot

  12. #12
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    Haha! yeah thats another term Id like to learn, I know it involves pushing a slug down the barrel to find the tight spots but other then that I dont know what you do when you find a tight spot. Ive got access to a few 10/22 barrels that I can practice with but I cant find the stuff I need or some basic instructions to start with.

  13. #13
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    Unlike many others, lapping a barrel is something I will often do. What's more, I have no trouble with lapping a barrel after chambering. For some reason, barrel lapping has come to be regarded as a mysterious operation which is more likely to cause harm than do good.
    There is little doubt that many people should not even consider attempting to lap a barrel. Let's face it, many people should never be allowed to handle anything harder or sharper than a Twinkie! It is possible to screw a barrel up with a lap just as it is possible to wreck a paint job with a buffer. It doesn't mean this is the most likely result however.
    Mostly, lapping is a means of refining the interior surface finish of the barrel. It can also be a means of improving dimensional uniformity or correcting dimensional deficiencies but, generally speaking, these don't usually exist in good quality barrels. If a maker of BR barrels produces a barrel with a noticable tight spot, he will probably not try to correct this with a lap but will cull the barrel.
    In the days when muzzleloaders ruled, lapping was often employed to produce a choked bore as a means of easing loading and, supposedly, improving accuracy. I don't think there are many advocates of the choked bore today so this has fallen out of favor.
    I have found it is entirely possible to do all sorts of things which most say not to do. For instance:
    Don't remove the lap from the barrel. You'll never get it back in place. I do this all the time. In fact, I will index the lap around in an attempt to uniform the land and groove dimensions.
    Don't lap from the muzzle end. I actually find this to perhaps be the best way to lap the throat area.
    You can't lap gain twist barrels. Because I don't appear to know any better, I lap them all the time. Works good.
    I consider firelapping to be a technique for the inept.
    Now, as to bored184's question. He states, "I've got a Kimber 82G that shoots great". This hardly sounds like a candidate for any type of remedial work whether it's lapping or rebedding or anything else. If a rifle "shoots great" I'm usually pretty happy with it. Lapping is something that is done to barrel which has an identifiable deficiency or as part of the manufacturing or the chambering process. It isn't done as part of a barrage of changes and alterations or as an act of desperation. As gunsmiths, we should have some idea of what it is we are trying to do before we do it. Regards, Bill.

  14. #14
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    Thumbs up Good answer - Bill.

    Thanks for taking the time..

  15. #15
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    Thank you guys for taking the time to answer my question

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