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flutes or no flutes

 
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  #1  
Old 01-10-2012, 08:11 PM
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Location: Creswell, Or
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flutes or no flutes

I am trying to decide if I want to have my new barrel fluted. I read on shilens page that they dont recommend fluting. This is what they say I need some advise on this. The barrel will be a 308 in a light palma or varmint contour and 24" long

Fluting is a service we neither offer nor recommend. If you have a Shilen barrel fluted, the warranty is void. Fluting a barrel can induce unrecoverable stresses that will encourage warping when heated and can also swell the bore dimensions, causing loose spots in the bore. A solid (un-fluted) barrel is more rigid than a fluted barrel of equal diameter. A fluted barrel is more rigid than a solid barrel of equal weight. All rifle barrels flex when fired. Accuracy requires that they simply flex the same and return the same each time they are fired, hence the requirement for a pillar bedded action and free floating barrel. The unrecoverable stresses that fluting can induce will cause the barrel to flex differently or not return from the flexing without cooling down a major amount. This is usually longer than a shooter has to wait for the next shot. The claim of the flutes helping to wick heat away faster is true, but the benefit of the flutes is not recognizable in this regard until the barrel is already too hot.
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  #2  
Old 01-10-2012, 08:37 PM
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Re: flutes or no flutes

If it is a straight thick barrel, the the flutes will save some grams.

Do you actually need the flutes? Make the barrel a bit lighter and cooler? It is your choice.
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  #3  
Old 01-10-2012, 08:40 PM
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Re: flutes or no flutes

bead blasting works as well for cooling as fluting without the uneven swelling of a fluted barrel. the notion that fluting makes a barrel stiffer is false
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  #4  
Old 01-10-2012, 10:08 PM
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Re: flutes or no flutes

You'd think Weatherby, Remington, and custom barrel manufacturer's would have stopped fluting ages ago if it couldn't be accomplished without degrading rifle and barrel accuracy. No? After all, who wants to manufacture and sell custom fluted barrels that shoot poorly. Wouldn't that be a self-defeating business model? Since the primary point of purchasing a custom aftermarket barrel is to help improve and ensure rifle accuracy?


I think the answer on fluting is not as simple as Shilen's web site. They prefer not to offer fluting. That doesn't equate to "Therefore fluting destroys accuracy." Or that other manufacturers can't flute their barrel's without harming the accuracy of their aftermarket barrels and factory or custom rifles.
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Old 01-10-2012, 10:14 PM
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Re: Perhaps Shilen needs to begin Fluting?

Based on some rather negative user feedback in this Thread, perhaps Shilen ought to consider fluting some of their barrels. The impression I came away with is that a fair percentage of their barrels - minus flutes - haven't performed up to par with respect to accuracy.

what barrel ?????????
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  #6  
Old 01-10-2012, 10:16 PM
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Re: flutes or no flutes

When I spoke with someone at Krieger just a couple of weeks ago, they said they will NOT flute a barrel once it is off the lathe. I asked if I could send my .277 bbl back to them for fluting.

I have 2 fluted bbls. One is a PacNor and the way the fluting came about was the builder, John Noveske, had already built my 30.06. He later got his fluting machine and said that he would do mine for free if I wanted so he could use the new machine, and that if accuracy changed at all, he'd replace the barrel.

I noticed no change whatsoever in accuracy with already proven loads.

The other is a Lilja barrel fluted by him and sold to Kirby for my 270 AM.

So, if you choose to get a fluted barrel, it is my opinion that the barrel maker should do the fluting because if the finished rifle won't shoot, it's on them. They cannot come back at you later and say that they are not going to help you out with a replacement because someone else fluted the barrel and they have no control over someone else's technique or skill.
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  #7  
Old 01-10-2012, 10:48 PM
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Re: flutes or no flutes

Derek,

I agree that fluting should be done by the barrel maker. I'm not familiar with which step fluting takes place but I seem to understand that fluting happens early on in the barrel making process.

I've been warned by several to not have a finished and installed barrel fluted. Thus I have no experience.

It may be a bit of luck that no change in performance was experienced in either of those two barrels.
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